Dressed to impress at Horse Riding Clubs of Victoria event

By Cobram Courier

Cobram-Barooga Equestrian Club has beaten away stiff competition to win the Top Teams Trophy for Dressage at the 2019 Horse Riding Clubs of Victoria event.

Held at Benalla and District Adult Riding Club from November 15 to 17, more than 430 competitors representing 107 teams took part.

The Top Teams Trophy for Dressage is the most popular date on the HRCAV calendar, taking three days to get all the riders through their tests with Cobram-Barooga team `MSSH coming out on top.

Cobram-Barooga Equestrian Club had a second team competing, which was also placed, well up the ladder in 13th, making it the only club to have two teams in the top 15.

The winning team was made up of Holly Arthur riding Millington Gordon, Samantha Arthur riding Wyann Guns and Roses, Sally Marsden riding Warrendi Royalist and Merran Socha riding Rosewood Park Summer Belle.

“All members of this team train their own horses with both Sam (Arthur) and Merran (Socha) having their horses from a very young age and doing the breaking in themselves a well,” club president Stacey Ware said.

“To do dressage well at this level, all riders put in hours of work each week, so I know there are a lot of early mornings for these ladies before they head off to work and of course Holly (Arthur) is a full-time student at nine years of age.”

HRCAV dressage is graded with level five being the starting point and level one and advanced being the highest competition levels. Team members all rode at their own level to create the finishing score of 14.95, ahead of second-placed Mansfield on 12.31.

Holly Arthur has only recently stepped up to level four, while Sam Arthur and Marsden rode at level three and Socha at level two. After the weekend Socha and Summer Belle will now compete at level one.

“It was wonderful to have a mother daughter combination as part of the team,” club representative, Sheilah Keamy said.

“Holly (Arthur) has only been a club member for 12 months, however Sally (Arthur), Sam (Marsden) and Merran (Socha) are long-time members with Sally being a life member.”

“Cobram-Barooga Equestrian Club is a small club by HRCAV standards, but we have a very strong competitive record around dressage, show jumping and showing.”