Horse Driving Trials - Scottish Grass
17 April 2005
Sun, sand, and sea. Are we in the Bahamas? No, amazingly enough, this was Lunan Bay on Sunday, April 17. Those who attended the lovely Sleet Storm event here 2 years ago will, I trust, now stop making those comments about Antarctica and Husky dog teams !
Our dressage judge, Carol Boswell, got through the excellent entry of 24 competitors in good time, and we were never more than a few minutes behind. (Later, we were treated to a showing of her new tandem driving round the event fields.)
The best dressage of the day was driven by Sue Hendry with her pony Tomahawk, on a very respectable score of 35, but Pat White with her team of Shetlands came a close second on 38. Heather Reid from the newcomer’s class was not far behind on 42.
Hew’s usual testing cones course resulted in only one double clear, achieved by Lyndsey Brown with her horse Otto, in the fastest time of the day. The only others to go clear on time were James Lockhart, Ruth Skinner and Sue Hendry. Unfortunately, Jane Anderson’s carriage wheels measured at 125 cms so we could not count her cones score in the final results.
This year, we followed the same format for the obstacles as in 2004. Competitors drove the four hazards once, then about an hour later had another chance to drive them again. Only the best score of the two was used for scoring. Ten drivers chose not to take this second opportunity, resulting in several eliminations for wrong course.
Hazards 1, 2 and 4 were the scenes of some unconventional decisions, whether on the part of horse or driver history does not relate. Susan Don, Jane Williams, Heather Gow, Helen Hunter, and Alison Birkett all managed to go ‘somewhere else’ in the tractor tyres and Jane Williams had a further newcomer moment in Wood-henge, while Campbell Bosanquet, James Lockhart and Alan Munroe thought they would drive a more creative route through the sleepers (sleepers not being the obstacle judges, I hasten to add!)
The three fastest times through the 4 obstacles all came from the single pony class. Sue Hendry put up some very fast times, and won the Best Obstacles rosette on a score of 24.3. Second was Peter Bowie on 27.6, and Audrey Barron came third on 29.7. James Simpson from the Newcomers class showed his promise with an excellent score of 31.4, with James Lockhart and Alan Steven hard behind. Helen Hunter led the single horses on 31.5, and Pat White put up some good times with her Shetland team, finishing on 43.5.
Champion: Sue Hendry
Thanks must go to our TD and cones judge, Ian Thornton-Kemsley, to our dressage judge, Carol Boswell, and to all the other helpers and obstacle stewards, without whom this event definitely would not have taken place.
Report by Karen Blair Imrie