Saddle up for young riders event

Emma King, of Gidgegannup, riding Em and M Russell.        Picture: David Baylis d451488
Emma King, of Gidgegannup, riding Em and M Russell.        Picture: David Baylis d451488

The WA Young Event Riders’ (WAYER) Olga Reveler Memorial competition begins on Friday evening at Brigadoon’s State Equestrian Centre.

WAYER committee chairwoman Polly-Ann Huntington urged people to watch and support local sport.

“Spectators can expect to see an exciting display in the cross country event,” Ms Huntington said.

“They will also see the devotion all of the riders display good horsemanship and attention to detail.”

WAYER gives young ambitious riders top class education from top local, interstate and overseas riders.

This weekend’s event provides WA riders the opportunity to qualify towards competing in international events, such as the Sydney International horse trials later this month.

Success in Sydney would see riders become eligible for the Rio Olympics.

“Competitors in the WAYER event include Beijing Olympian (and silver medallist) Sonja Johnson,” Ms Hungtington said.

“Other local riders such as Belinda Isbister and Tegan Lush are also vying for Rio.”

The three-day event will see about 250 riders of different levels compete in dressage, show jumping and cross country events.

Emma Pearson, who is also on the WAYER Committee, said the aim was to accrue the least amount of points.

“Riders compete in all three of the events,” Ms Pearson said.

“The rider with the lowest score in each class is the winner.”

Ms Huntington, who is also one of the judges, said officials from the UK, New Zealand, Sweden and India had flown in for the event.

“We are lucky to have judges from many countries around the world,” she said.

“And one of the top course designers, John Nicholson from New Zealand, is in charge of the course.”

Prizes include up to $1500 cash, as well as gifts from Lancaster winery.

“We just want to support the Swan Valley,” Ms Huntington said.

“And we hope it supports us.

“It would be lovely to see a big crowd.”