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Sunny South Australian State Championships

Wayville showgrounds in Adelaide © Suzannah Willis

Wayville showgrounds in Adelaide.

© Suzannah Willis


By Suzannah Willis

There are few venues in Australia that are as beautiful as Adelaide Showgrounds in Wayville, and it was the perfect setting for the South Australian State Championships. Not only was the arena green-perfection but during the three days of competition not a cloud was seen.

The show attracted riders from Western Australia, New South Wales and Victoria and did not disappoint! The show was set on the main grounds with large marquees splitting the two arenas. The marquees were filled with shopping and the charming Rider’s Lounge which supplied the perfect area for watching classes and included free drinks and snacks for the riders each day. Graeme Watts built challenging courses in ring one over the weekend, asking many technical questions of the horses and riders.


Riders lounge © Suzannah Willis

The riders lounge.

© Suzannah Willis

The first two classes of the Junior, Young Rider and Senior championships incorporated the team’s competition. Victoria and South Australia each nominated three riders for the contest and the faults from each rider were summed each day with the other team members. This meant the fewer faults each team had, the better. After the two rounds of competition, Victoria took the win in all three categories and it was a huge highlight for Chef D’equipe John Pierce.

The weather was unseasonably warm on Sunday but it didn’t seem to hinder any of the major classes from producing many great clear rounds. First up in the Pryde’s Easifeed ring was the Stars of the Future 125-130cm class. Watts built a demanding track including the infamous Australian flag planks and many related lines. There were 10 combinations taken back for the second round who were either on 0 or 4 faults. Three combinations managed to produce double clears, with Paul Brent and Kablesse Kavita the fastest to take the win. In second was James Harvey and Patanga’s Casino followed by Nicole Bruggemann on her new mount Diamond B Centurian. Next the Mini Prix had 17 starters and took 10 back for the second round, however this time around there were only two double clears; Jess Barton and Volador taking the win followed by Anthony Thomas and Allegretto. Briony Temby took third being the quickest four faulter. The Young Rider State Championship had 12 starters but Connor Reed on Clasique Dorien proved too fast for Jasmine Denison who was the only other double clear on Carita Gratia.


Mini Prix winner Jess Barton © Suzannah Willis

Mini Prix winner Jess Barton.

© Suzannah Willis


The Senior Championship on Sunday saw 11 combinations attempt the 145-150cm track. Yet only one combination could keep all the rails up over the two rounds – Paul Brent and Cavalli Park Aliyah. South Australian local Kristy Bruhn took her two rides Jack and Kay Em Bambalou to second and third place behind Brent. This meant that Paul Brent from the Yarra Valley had won both the Future Stars class and the Senior Championship, not to mention that his other ride - Fontaine Blue VDL - placed 4th in the Senior as well, making it a great day for the Cavalli Park Team!


Futurity Winner Paul Brent © Suzannah Willis

Future Stars class and the Senior Championship winner, Paul Brent.

© Suzannah Willis

The final class on Sunday was the Junior State Championship for those under 18 years old. With 10 combinations in the second round, Victorian riders Chloe Dennison and Bronte Hutchison were once again the only two to jump double clear however, Chloe finished the jump off in a super quick time of 45.40 to take the win from Bronte.

Whilst all these events were going on, over in the IRT arena the final classes for the 110cm, 120cm, 100cm and 90cm were going. Victorian Robyn Todd took out the 110cm with less than 25 points on her beautiful Fifth Avenue LC, whilst Hannah Hardy and City of the Moon won the open section. James Harvey and Patanga’s Hiccup won the 120cm Open and Troy Woollard and Prayer Academy won the 100cm on less than 10 points. Last, but not least Jill Ramsey and Statford Nori won the 90cm series final.


110cm class winner Robyn Todd © Suzannah Willis

110cm class winner Robyn Todd.

© Suzannah Willis


Once again, there are few shows in Australia that are as inviting as South Australian State Championships. The grounds, atmosphere and courses were all first class and proved why the show was short listed for Equestrian Australia’s “Event on the year”!





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