Buckley trots to holiday crown

Cayman Riding School once again hosted its annual Christmas Horse Show, with a record number of entries and riders taking part. 

More than 70 children competed throughout the day, highlighted by lots of fun and some extremely competitive riding. Cayman Riding School, on Hirst Road in Savannah Newlands, is affiliated with the British Pony Club, and the local riding instructors are fully approved and qualified by the British Horse Society. 

Competitions and events associated with The British Pony Club are held on a monthly basis, but the special Christmas Horse Show features riders of all levels competing on the same day. The results from the day showcased a number of great riders. 

In the Handy Pony class, horse and rider must negotiate an obstacle course as fast as possible, and the rider who completes the course without incurring any penalties is the winner. In group A of the intermediate division, Skye Buckley placed first, ahead of Jenel Rankin and Zahra Dinspel-Powell. Rounding out the top finishers were Olivia Barnett, Jorden Butler and Hilary Cahill. In group B, Sevenja McCoy was first, Jenna Boucher, second, Mya Heiss, third, Grace Bostock, fourth, Melody Allinger, fifth, and Lea Rado, sixth. 

In the advanced segment, Jenna Boucher was first, Amara Thompson, second, Hannah Fowler, third, Chloe Fowler, fourth, and Eva Muspratt fifth.  

A novice category was offered for those children who were not quite so experienced and negotiated the course at a more sedate pace. Riders who participated in this class include: Arabella Bullmore, Hugo Barnett, Kate Young, Freya Timms, Anabella and Meri Hayden, Charlie Dowell, Kathryn Lambert, Jessica Drysdale, Sienna Jack and Jade Hare. 

Riders also tackled jumps, split into several groups. In Intermediate Jumping, Mya Heiss won group A ahead of Sunday Groves, Sage VanderBol-Costa, Elana Sinclair, Eva Hepburn and Melody Allinger. Skye Buckley won group B over Joshua Daykin, Grace Bostock, Jenna Boucher, Svenja McCoy and Lea Rado. The open division winner was Eva Muspratt, ahead of Juliet Forrester, Jenna Boucher, Amara Thompson, Hannah Fowler and Chloe Fowler. 

Creative costumes were another highlight of the fancy dress competition. The effort put forth in this class was so great that the judges found it almost impossible to decide on the winner. After much deliberation, joint first place was awarded to Olivia and Hugo Barnett, who dressed their pony Lollypop as a woolly mammoth, and Grace Bostock, who dressed her pony Diamond as a camel. 

The riding school now heads into the holiday break before resuming in the New Year.  

An after-school program that starts at 3 p.m. each day will continue in 2014, and instruction will be offered for children from the age of 5. For more details, call 926-7669. 

The special Christmas Horse Show features riders of all levels competing on the same day.  

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Sunday Groves and Eva Hepburn got into the spirit.

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Skye Buckley was the overall show champion.

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