Local riders take to the saddle for Grassroots competition

'The East Aberdeenshire Shooting Stars' (Rachel Wilson, Danielle Barrick, Alyssa Neumann and Megan Mills)
'The East Aberdeenshire Shooting Stars' (Rachel Wilson, Danielle Barrick, Alyssa Neumann and Megan Mills)

East Aberdeenshire Pony club hosted the annual Combined Training and Grassroots competition for Area 1 North in the beautiful setting of Philorth Estate.

Blue skies and warm temperatures attracted a large turnout of competitors from far and near.

This year saw 46 competitors from six different pony clubs; East Aberdeenshire (Peterhead, Fraserburgh, Mintlaw, Newburgh, Potterton,) Aberdeenshire, Deveron, Deeside, Bennachie (Inverurie area) and Moray and Nairn.

Competitors have to perform a dressage test following by a round of show jumps either as part of a team or as an individual.

Combined Training teams consist of four pony club members from the same branch but of differing levels of ability. The competition is divided into four ability levels with one member from each team competing in each level. This starts off with show jumps at a maximum of 60cm, the next class is 65-70cm, then 75-80cm and the highest level jump 85-90cm.

The Grassroots competition is for the younger riders who are mostly on lead rein. They also compete in teams of four but of matched ability.

Teams get marked on the turnout of themselves, their pony and their tack. They then have to complete a dressage test as a group followed by a handy pony obstacle course.

Winners this year were ’The East Aberdeenshire Shooting Stars’ in the Combined Training collecting the ‘Caroline Cup’ with four local riders:

85-90cm Alyssa Neumann from Stuartfield riding Silver

75-80cm Rachel Wilson from Potterton riding Grace

65-70cm Megan Mills from Peterhead riding Jimmy

55-60cm Daniellle Barrick from Peterhead riding Tiny

Indiviual Combined Training results were as follows:

85-90cm Abby Cowie riding Kizmet from Devron Pony Club.

75-80cm Findlay Lawson riding Lila from Deeside Pony Club.

65-70cm Rachel Davidson riding Spring Croft Calypso from Devron Pony Club.

55-60cm Sway Moggach riding Black Magic from Devron Pony Club.

Cross poles Darcie Booth riding Poppy from East Aberdeenshire Pony Club.

The assisted Grassroots winning team were the Deeside Dynamos (Romy Bryce on Galaxy, Kara Smith on Silver, Marcy Bryce on Wendy and Millie Lawson on Dakota).

The unassisted Grassroots winning team were Bennachie (Katie Bremner on Bluey, Evie Craigie on Peggy, Scarlett Allan on Sascha and Kirsten Wilkie on Spirit).