NEWS > Para-Equestrian
Posted by Equestrian Australia on 12/09/2013.

Para-equestrian State Champs integrated into NSW State Dressage Champs

Jan Geary - Victoria Davis Para Grade II Champion 
Photograph:Toni Venhaus
Jan Geary Technical Delegate & EA

The NSW State Dressage Championship included for the first time the NSW State Para Equestrian Championships.

 Although entries were small this year, this was the opportunity to signal to Para Dressage riders that they will be integrated with Dressage competitions for the future.

This was a great way to trial the integration of the Dressage Championships with the Para Equestrian Championships at a state level ahead of the integration of the competition at the Australian Dressage Championships which will also be held at SIEC, Horsley Park in October.

This Championships was used to demonstrate to the Para Riders and to the Dressage community how easy it is to include the Para Equestrian sport.  This weekend confirmed for everyone that this will be a success.

In line with Dressage the riders were offered an Arena Familiarisation time in Arena 2B on Thursday before the start of Competition the next day, and in brilliant sunshine the riders enjoyed working on the very special Arenas at SIEC.

Equestrian Australia's National Performance Director for Dressage and Para Equestrian, Julia Battams, said the Organising Committee did a wonderful job integrating the PE classes into the NSW State Championships and itappeared completely seamless.

"It is great to finally be a part of these national events and feel now the wider acceptance of PE as part of dressage," said Julia.

The first day of Competition was the Team Competition and the FEI Team Tests for each of the 3 Grades competing.

Victoria Davies on her expressive stallion, yes a stallion, Andaluka Elegido, represented Grade II.

Sui Watts and Bologamy Accession represented Grade III, and newcomer Jemima Cruise on Kendlestone Park Cruise competed for the Champions ribbon.

Hannah Dodd and Grand Sam represented Grade IV with Tracey Crittenden and Rock Legend Competed for the Champions ribbon.

Day Two – The FEI Championship Test for each of the Grades is a very difficult Test and Victoria Davies and Andaluka Elegido settled to provide  a very professional Grade II Test – scores for the Team and Championship Test deliver the Champion for each Grade. Victoria Davies was awarded Grade II Champion.

Grade III featured Sui Watts and Jemima Bartlett and Kendlestone Park Cruise riding for the  Champion ribbon.   Sui Watts won the Grade III Champion’s ribbon and prizes with Jemima taking Reserve Champion.

Grade IV Hannah Dodd and Tracey Crittenden competed to be Grade IV Champion, with Hannah taking the top spot and Tracey the Reserve Champion.

Freestyle Day – Sunday

Para Equestrian moved to the large Olympic Arena 1a, quite exciting and quite scary but all horses and riders coped with the venue really well.

Grade I I– Victoria Davies gave a very polished performance  and clearly enjoyed riding to music.

Grade III – Sui Watts Freestyle was very bright and bouncy.

Grade IV – Hannah and Tracey competed to be the Freestyle winner of the State Championships with Hannah taking out the first place.  Hannah competed in London so has a wealth experience in international events.  Grand Sam is her new horse and the partnership is now developing into a real force in Para Dressage.

Judges for the event  were Jan Geary FEI 5*;  Sue Cunningham FEI 4*, Kylie Bullock FEI 3* and Carolyn Lieutenant Retd FEI 4*/National Para Judge.

Our thanks must go to Sue Baker Event Director of the Dressage State Championships and to Judy Fasher, Chair of EANSW who provided Writers and assistance for the Competition.  Kathy Shelley dealt with the Arena size change swiftly and quickly.

Thanks to AKA Quality for sponsoring the Para Equestrian Competition -  the ribbons and saddle cloths were outstanding.

Thanks also to Coty Australia for three very glamorous Philosophy Skincare prizes, which were greeted with great glee by the three Champions, who had clearly never received such a wealth of products before.

Now, to the National Championships – with everyone involved in the States volunteering to help again the Nationals look set to provide a good competition with entries expected from Victoria and Queensland as well as more riders from NSW.

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