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Young eventers star at Melbourne

LOCAL riders Adeline Collins and Molly Barry have recently returned from the Melbourne International Horse Trials with fantastic results.
It is one of the biggest events on the Australian eventing calendar and was held at Werribee Park Equestrian Centre on June 7 to 9.
Both girls competed in the CCIJ* competition. It was Adeline’s first time riding in the MIHT, and Molly was competing in the event for the second time.
Adeline, a 17 year old from Fish Creek came 20th in the event, while 16 year old Molly from Kardella came home in fifth place.
Adeline took her thoroughbred RPC The Third Wise Man, or Harry to the event, while Molly competed on her six year old home bred quarter horse cross, Just Joshen.
Adeline said at the start of the year she had to qualify for the MIHT by attending at least two events at one star level.
“I was successful and got through that and obtained the qualification and then I had to enter and be accepted,” she said.
“I then had to prepare my horse for a really big week.”
Adeline said Harry’s training consisted of a lot of skills work to make sure everything was up to scratch before the event.
“Competitors come from all over Australia for the trials, so we had to train a lot more jumping up to height,” she said.
“We also had to work on the horse’s fitness, because we had to gallop 4.5 kilometres in eight minutes over a pretty gruelling cross country course.”
For Adeline’s first time at such a huge event, she was really pleased with her results.
“We were sitting 22nd after dressage and then we put together a really super cross country round, to bring us up to 18th at the end of day two,” she said.
“On the third day, Harry was a bit stiff and we had a fairly bad show jumping round which put us back to 20th place.
“I am really happy with how it went, really happy. A lot of first of time riders don’t even finish all three phases.”
Adeline’s horse is an off the track thoroughbred who raced his last race in 1998.
“He is rising 20 this year and was the oldest horse in the field at the event. Molly’s horse at six years old was the youngest,” she said.
“He is a great old horse. I have had him for two years now and he has taught me a lot. I am currently starting to think about getting some young ones to bring up.
“We do have two rising three year old fillies in the paddock we are hoping to break in this year.”
The next goal for Adeline and Harry is the Victorian Eventing Fundraiser event in July, and then hopefully back to Lakes and Craters three day event in December.
“My ultimate dream would be competing overseas for Australia at four star level (eventing’s highest level),” she said.
“I would love to keep riding and eventing long term no matter what and hopefully one day breed my own horses to event.”
Molly said coming fifth is such a prestigious event was very exciting, and was delighted her young horse performed so well.
“Last year I finished mid field on a more experienced horse, who was less cooperative in the dressage phase,” she said.
After dressage, Molly was sitting in fourth on the leader board.
“Josh doesn’t usually do such a good dressage test, but this time he decided to be a good boy and improved his scores by about 10 percent, which is a lot,” she said.
“Cross country is usually his strongest phase, and he jumped clear to leave us third after the end of day two.”
Going into the final day, Just Joshen showed his greenness and took down two rails in the showjumping course which set the combination back from third to fifth.
“The field was very tight, usually two rails wouldn’t have set us back quite so far,” Molly said.
“It was still a pretty impressive result.”
Molly is keen to take her horse Just Joshen to the top level of eventing if he will go there.
“So far so good,” she said.
“Hopefully, we will do a few more one star events until he is confident at that level then we will look at going up to two star possible early next year, as long as everything goes well.”

Jumping Josh: Molly Barry and her horse Just Joshen tackle a cross country fence during the Melbourne International Horse Trials in Werribee recently.

Jumping Josh: Molly Barry and her horse Just Joshen tackle a cross country fence during the Melbourne International Horse Trials in Werribee recently.

Short URL: http://thestar.com.au/?p=11316

Posted by on Jun 24 2014. Filed under Sport. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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