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Local riders take part in arena event at Halkirk


By Jean Gunn

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Six-year-old Rachel MacGregor and Dandy looking great in their 'matchy matchy' gear, winners of the first class of the day.
Six-year-old Rachel MacGregor and Dandy looking great in their 'matchy matchy' gear, winners of the first class of the day.

Riders aged from six to 60 took part in an arena event organised by Caithness Pony Club at the weekend.

A testing track was build in the outdoor arena at the indoor school, Halkirk, on Saturday by course builder Colin Hexley from Golspie. The arena event, which was open to all, included a number of show jumps followed by non-fixed cross country style fences and competitors were timed.

Although it was a cold day, conditions stayed dry throughout the competition which included qualifiers for the Pony Club's Spring Festival to be held at Morris Equestrian Centre, near Kilmarnock, next year on February 2-3.

Some of the prize winners in the 90cm arena event. From left: Rowan Lee and Pedro, sixth, Erin Hewitson riding Rio Bravo, fourth, Alysha Holmes and Rory, second, and Lauren Oag who was first with Trendy Lexus and third with Candy Reign.
Some of the prize winners in the 90cm arena event. From left: Rowan Lee and Pedro, sixth, Erin Hewitson riding Rio Bravo, fourth, Alysha Holmes and Rory, second, and Lauren Oag who was first with Trendy Lexus and third with Candy Reign.

The event proved exciting with riders trying to achieve the optimum time of 1.41 minutes, however some ended up going a little too quick incurring time penalties. In the 80cm class four riders went clear, all faster than the time required, with the final winner being declared as Alysha Holmes on Rory, who handed her qualifying ticket down to Rowan Lee, riding Durran Pedro – Alysha was campaigning for the chance to take part in the 90cm finals which she secured by coming second in that class.

Qualifying in the 70cm was Halkirk rider Leoni Kennedy on Derry after this new combination won their first class. Lauren Oag had a good outing on both her horses, she picked up tickets to the Spring Festival in both the 80cm and 90cm with Trendy Lexus while Candy Reign has qualified for the 1m class.

Only Pony Club members could qualify for the Scottish finals at Morris Equestrian Centre.

Leoni Kennedy on Derry (left) and Morven Mackenzie on Cilla.
Leoni Kennedy on Derry (left) and Morven Mackenzie on Cilla.

Results

Lead rein/assisted: Rachel MacGregor. 50cm: 1 Ellie Bain, Tiger Lily; 2 Erica Pottinger, BB; 3 Isla Miller, Silver; 4 Ava Bain, Ollie. 60cm; 1 E Bain; 2 E Pottinger; 3 I Miller. 70cm: 1 Leoni Kennedy, Derry; 2 Morven Mackenzie, Cilla. 80cm: 1 Alysha Holmes, Rory; 2 Rowan Lee, Pedro; 3 Cat MacGregor, Bea; 4 Lauren Oag, Trendy Lexus; 5 L Kennedy; 6 Ruth Alexander, Harry. 90cm: 1 L Oag, Trendy Lexus; 2 A Holmes; 3 L Oag, Candy Reign; 4 Erin Hewitson, Rio Bravo; 5 Emma Coghill, King; 6 R Lee. 1m: 1 Mary Miller, Poppy; 2 Lauren Oag, Candy Reign; 3 Frances Sutherland, Cosmos; 4 E Hewitson. 1.10m: F Sutherland.

Leoni Kennedy and Derry, the winners of the 70cm class.
Leoni Kennedy and Derry, the winners of the 70cm class.

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