March 30, 2023
The South Burnett Working Equitation club (SBWE) hosted more than 70 horse and rider combinations earlier this month in a two-day competition at the Nanango Showgrounds.
Competitors came from across south-east Queensland and as far north as Agnes Waters for the first official Australian National Working Equitation Queensland event for 2023.
Some rain over the weekend may have dampened the grounds but not the competitors’ spirits.
There were representatives from six of the seven affiliated Queensland clubs in attendance.
The South Burnett club fielded entries from Introductory right through to the Consagrados I level.
SBWE was able to offer members the opportunity to compete in the 4th Phase of Working Equitation, ie Team Cattle Penning.
Five teams of riders took to the arena with each member of the team attempting to safely and successfully pen their allocated beast within the three-minute allowed time-frame.
Of the 20 rider and horse combinations, 18 penned their beast, which was an outstanding result.
Cattle donor Gordon Ward supplied very docile jersey heifers for the event.
“Without the support of people like Mr Ward, we could not have offered this additional phase to our competitors,” SBWE president Julie Brown said.
“We were honoured to have Mr Andrew Mulligan, the Chair of Australian National Working Equitation Ltd, and his daughter Bridie, once again travel from Mudgee to officiate over the weekend.
“The standard of competition over the two days was very high.
“Working Equitation is a vibrant, technical discipline comprising three compulsory phases which are the Dressage test, Ease of Handling (which is Dressage around obstacles), a timed Speed event around obstacles, and the optional Team Cattle Penning Phase.
“Originating in European countries, the sport has developed a solid following in Australia with affiliated clubs in four States and now in the Northern Territory.
“Competitors are awarded points for placing in each phase with the points accumulating and the highest points combination being declared the winner.
“All competitors receive feedback in the form of results sheets showing the allocated marks along with comments from the judge.
“The sport is open to all ages and genders, riding all breeds of horses in riders’ choice of tack.”
The SBWE club was formed in 2019.
“Anybody wanting more information is welcome to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org,” Julie said.