Arena event rounds off season

Holly Sproat in action at the arena event.
Holly Sproat in action at the arena event.

Stranraer and District Riding Club held its last competition at Castlefields for this season on Sunday.

The sunny day helped mark a lovely end to what has been a busy and successful season.

The event was arena eventing, which consists of a course of fences built using both traditional showjumps and more taxing cross country fences. The course was expertly designed and built by Mhairi Ross and a fabulous team of helpers and gave a stiff but enjoyable challenge to all levels of competitors.

Four ponies came forward for the first class of the day, with Saskia Brown and Rocky giving us a lovely clear round to take first place. In the horse section, Julie McKnight’s young mount, Cute Lucy, gathered all her courage to take first place.

In Class 2, the pony section was won by Abbey Kelly and the incredibly well-behaved Archie with a lovely clear in 2mins 15.88secs which just pipped Caitlin McClorey and Fizz, who were also clear in 2mins 17.25 secs. The horse section was won by Mhairi Ross and the handsome Wally with a clear round in 2mins 10.12 secs.

We then had the excitement of a pairs class and Rachel Hesford on Murphy and Mhairi Ross on Wally had a lovely joint clear round in 5mins 0.06secs to pip Becky McKinstry on Fern and Abbey Kelly on Archie who just had one fence down for four faults.

As we moved on to the bigger fences in Classes 3 and 4, the pony sections were both a battle between Carolyn Fisher on Lewis and Rachel Baillie on Connie. Rachel took first place in Class 3 with a very fast clear round in 1min 8.44 secs. But the honours were reversed in Class 4 when Rachel went first but had one fence down and Carolyn managed to hold her nerve and have a clear round in 1min 23.32 secs.

There were two trophies to challenge for in the horse sections of Classes 3 and 4 and this attracted a large entry. There was brave and accomplished riding on show and after some close competition Class 3 was won by Shirley Panter and her lovely young horse VDL Cavalier. Class 4 was equally closely fought over with Tracey Carnegie and Wonka showing everyone how it should be done with a clear round in 1min 31.12 secs to pick up the trophy.

Both these beautiful trophies were being issued for the first time and were presented in memory of Katy Cumming. Katy was a very experienced and expert competition rider who was an enthusiastic and influential member of Stranraer and District Riding Club. Sadly, Katy died earlier this year following a short illness and her enthusiasm and sense of fun has been greatly missed by all her friends and colleagues at the club this season.

The club dedicated the the Stranraer & Distict Riding Club Quaich in memory of Katy Cumming for Class 3. The Katy Cumming Memorial Trophy was very generously donated by Katy’s husband, Peter, and was presented for Class 4. Katy’s mum, Mavis Paterson, kindly came along to present the trophies to the winners on Sunday and this was greatly appreciated by all involved.

These trophies will be perpetual trophies and will go a little way to keeping Katy’s memory alive among current and future members of the club.

The next events will be Trish Harvey lessons at Castlefields on Saturday, September 28, and showjumping and cross country at Terally on Sunday, October 6.


Class 1 – Ponies: 1. Saskia Brown and Rocky, 2. Caitlin McClorey and Fizz, 3. Caitlin McKie and Dapper. Class 2 – Ponies: 1. Abbey Kelly and Archie, 2. Caitlin McClorey and Fizz, 3. Becky McKinstry and Fern. Horses: 1. Mhairi Ross and Wally, 2. Holly Sproat and Tiler’s Boy, 3. Rachel Hesford and Murphy. Class 2A – Pairs: 1. Rachel Hesford and Murphy and Mhairi Ross and Wally, 2. Becky McKinstry and Fern and Abbey Kelly and Archie. Class 3 – Ponies: 1. Rachel Baillie and Connie, 2. Carolyn Fisher and Lewis. Horses: 1. Shirley Panter and VDL Cavalier, 2. Tracey Carnegie and Wonka, 3. Julie McKnight and Criuse, 4. Leah Kelly and Ritchie, 5. Holly Sproat and Tiler’s Boy, 6. Joyce Lafferty and Reilly. Class 4 – Ponies: 1. Carolyn Fisher and Lewis, 2. Rachel Baillie and Connie. Horses: 1: Tracey Carnegie and Wonka, 2. Julie McKnight and Cruise, 3. Leah Kelly and Ritchie, 4. Shirley Panter and VDL Cavalier, 5. Joyce Lafferty and Reilly.