Riding school struts its stuff

An amazing turnout from both competitors and supporters contributed to yet another fun filled day when Cayman Riding School recently hosted a Gymkhana and Fancy Dress competition as part of their ongoing programme with the British Pony Club.

Located on Hirst Road in Savannah Newlands, the riding school has been affiliated to the British Pony Club – an international youth organization for young people interested in horses and riding organization – for almost five years.

The British club is represented in no less than 27 countries with a worldwide membership exceeding 110,000; making it the largest association of young riders in the world.

Offering training programmes from the very beginner up to instructor level – the British club is an excellent way of keeping current with the rest of the ‘horsey’ world and has been the starting point for the majority of British equestrian Olympic team members and medal winners.

Having recently returned from their annual trip to the UK where 13 young riders received training from British National trainer Sally O’Neill and got to meet Olympic Gold medal winners Peter Charles and Ben Mayer, the riding school is now working with other pony club centres in the region to establish an inter-Caribbean league and exchange programme.

Whilst the Gymkhana and Fancy Dress Horse Show last Saturday was a long way from Olympic standards, the children had such a fun time with races such as the sack race, apple bobbing and, for the more experienced children, ‘Chase Me Charlie’ which involves the riders taking their horses over a single jump. Each time the competitor successfully negotiates the jump, the height is increased and it’s very exciting to watch; if not a little nerve wracking.

Chloe Fowler on her pony ‘Shirley Temple’ won this class – easily clearing 3ft 5in with her sister Hannah coming second on Honeycomb and Eva Muspratt coming third on Mad Max – the smallest pony at the riding school which cleared an impressive 2ft 6in. In fourth place came Dane Muspratt riding Shadow.

The last event of the day was the Fancy Dress competition and the turnout was amazing with so much time and effort put into the costumes it was extremely difficult for the three judges to decide on a winner.

Having to choose from 17 entries including Unicorns, Harry Potter, Witches, Clowns and mummified ponies, eventually the judges announced the winner as Laney Bodden with her horse ‘Danny’ dressed as a bee keeper. The costume was just amazing and had taken Laney and her mum Karyn Bodden hours to create.

In second place was Grace Bostock and Diamond dressed as ‘Little Bo Peep’, third place was Chloe Fowler as Cat-Woman and the Bat Mobile and fourth place was Hannah Fowler, who had dressed both her horse and dog as a 
Bumble Bee.

Fifth place was awarded to Megan Fowler, who had dressed her miniature pony as Ratatouille and sixth place was awarded to Lea Rado, who had dressed her pony as a Flower Princess.

All competitors received rosettes and their day ended much later than anticipated as they ate ice creams in the dark.

Cayman Riding School would like to thank all the volunteers and helpers who made the day possible, with a special mention to the Bodden family for their ongoing support.

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