The Walton High Equestrian Team had their first outing recently. They competed in the NSEA Eventers Challenge run by Beachborough School, which consisted of a combination of Show jumping and Cross Country courses.
The destination was Aston-Le-Walls Event Centre near Brackley, meaning an extremely early start for our #waltonjumphigh team! Our riders Jasmin, Grace, Tegan and Lola were at Bryerley Springs by 5.30am to fetch their horses from the fields and get them ready for the journey. By the time they left the girls were as soggy as the horses but excited about the day ahead. With their Walton High hat silks, saddle pads and hoodies (kindly prepared by Jenny Cruickshank) they looked fabulous representing the school.
Horses, riders and parents were on the road by 6.30am and after the hour long journey the horses were unloaded. The riders made sure that horses Roxy, Knockawuddy Buddy, Beechwood and Four Socks were protected from the weather with some hay to nibble on, whilst getting soaking wet (again) themselves.
First to ride the challenging course were Grace and Jasmin, who both showed great determination in attempting a course this demanding. Judging was strict; both riders found the course tricky and so did the horses. With two knock downs in the Show jumping but a clear round in Cross Country and with a time of 2.49 (just one second off the optimum time) Jasmin secured 17th place in a class of 33.
Grace’s clear round in Show jumping and just 20 faults in Cross Country earned her a very respectable 19th out of 32.
Tegan and Lola both rode the 40cm course, which was held entirely on grass. This was the first time the girls had even seen a course this large and open, with the wet ground conditions adding an extra challenge. They had both only competed once before and so we are extremely proud that they completed the course and truly earned their ribbons!
This was an excellent confidence building day for all our riders, they knew the competition would be tough, however all four showed great perseverance, kept cheerful and put in an amazing effort all day, despite the constant rain. Way to go Team Walton High!