On 28 November White Horse TREC Group held a successful Arena TREC competition at Milton Equestrian Centre. Event secretary Fiona Thurnell reports:

The weather couldn’t dampen the spirits of all the happy riders at the first Arena TREC competition this winter for White Horse TREC Group at Milton Equestrian, Worksop on 28 November. After a bright and breezy start the rain lashed down outside, but there were plenty of sparkling performances inside the arena.

Phillipa Thornton showcased a potential star in four-year-old Delores Del Rio, scoring a comfortable victory in the TREC GB Newcomers class. The partnership demonstrated trust and harmony braving the ‘zebra crossing’ obstacle. Pip said “I was amazed with how well she tackled the obstacles and coped so well with the weather… I think Dulcie has decided she does want to be a TREC horse!”

Alex Sales and her veteran Thoroughbred Toffee had a great day at the Masterton Method sponsored event, with three wins. Alex’s ‘take your own line’ round capitalised on the mare’s obedient in-hand work to cash in on points for led obstacles including the footbridge, S-bend and narrow corridor of poles. Teaming up with regular TREC partner Rachael Wilmot (Henry) the 2015 British Champions were again unbeatable in the Pairs class, and the TREC GB Open class completed the treble.

Alex Wells & Toffee

Photo: Alex Wells and Toffee

12-year-old Erin Scott from Wakefield was all smiles when winning the starter class with Evie O’Keeffe’s part Welsh Cob Sooti. Second-placed Emma Daniel from Sheffield gave a stylish display with her Arab performance horse Aly’s Estrella de Rock. Rocky was unphased by the innovative Tiger Trap obstacle, neatly stepping over the raised poles.

Marie Spillane and former racehorse Prince of Love have quickly got back to winning ways at only their second outing following the birth of Marie’s daughter in the summer, taking the in-hand class and two second placings in the ridden classes. Youngest horse of the day, Amanda Renshaw’s 20-month old traditional piebald Clowne Jester won fans and a ribbon at his first show with his polite and confident display.

Loyal White Horse TREC Group member Simon Haydock from Rolleston, near Newark, took the TREC GB Newcomers Elite on Rommel, with his wife Kate in third place on Humphrey. The couple were split by Sarah Appleby and Kernow Sasparilla who described it as “a great day in crazy weather!”

Dawn Phythian and Norwegian Fjord Thor headed the Intermediate with one of the fastest walk scores of the day from Charlotte Sanderson on Maisie.

Erin Scott on Sooti

Photo: Erin Scott and Sooti

TREC rewards all-round performance with horse and rider tackling simulated trail riding obstacles and control of paces through walk and canter, with the navigating phase added outdoors in summer – making the most of the countryside. This was a first venture into online entries for White Horse TREC Group and the Equo Events system proved popular with riders, with classes full well before the closing date.

Organiser Sarah Thurnell said “huge thanks are due to all the judges who gave up their Saturday to help, and the riders who set up the course and cleared it away afterwards. It was a fantastic day and lovely to be involved. Our next event in the Masterton Method TREC GB Winter series is 23 January at Askham Bryan near York. We are expecting this to be just as popular but have booked better weather!”

Emma Daniel & Rocky

Photo: Emma Daniel and Rocky. All photos credited to Ruth O’Keeffee.

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