Monday 3rd April saw pupils from Enniskillen Royal Grammar School take to the Indoor Arena @ Ecclesville in Fintona. On this occasion, we had five Individual entries across the heights and two team entries over two heights.
Unexpectedly, Tess Wallace was the first to go in Class 1 when she was asked to ride a pony for a friend at the last minute. Classes 1 + 2 are decided on a draw from a hat for all those who went clear (as the beginner heights aren’t timed). To her surprise, Tess was drawn first! Well done ????
Sophie McCann and Penny were the first (official) Individuals to go from ERGS. Sophie was really hoping to go clear here today after the last event. This she did with ease. The pair flew round the course without a care in the world. Super riding from this duo for a clear round.
In the next class, the course was timed in the 2nd phase. Emma McCaldin and Katman were the first ERGS pair to attempt the course. Unfortunately, there were a few shaky jumps, so Emma decided to pull her out after Katman took a hard knock into a fence. No doubt the pair will be back at full strength soon.
Oliwia Muras and Rambo were next. These two jumped very well, completing the course with just a pole down in each phase.
A last-minute entry was Jasmine Greaves on Speedy. Well…..Speedy by name and by nature! This pair really flew from the start, taking the jumps in their stride. Unfortunately, Speedy was a little too skittish after having only a short warm-up, and he got away from Jasmine’s control for a second, resulting in a fall. Fortunately, nothing was hurt and with a wry smile on her face, Jasmine returned to the gate. A future horsewoman in the making for us to look out for.
Finally, after a one hour delay (a huge number of Individual Entries in the beginner events), the Intermediate teams got under way. ERGS was the first team to go with Tori Lilly on William being our first pair. We couldn’t have asked for a better start! These two sailed round the course as if they’d never been away from it. Double clear, a great start. Next were Ruby Moore and Pippa. These two are well used to riding at Ecclesville and their confidence certainly showed today. Another seemingly effortless round. Double clear number 2. Hot on their hooves were Lily Moore and Izzy. Again, another duo in their comfort zone with confident jumping coming easily. Double clear number 3. Finally, Tess Wallace and Rusty entered the arena. The pressure was off as we had 3 clears already, so these two could relax and enjoy the round. Well – 5th gear was engaged and these two zoomed round the course in a great time. Double clear number 4 and a combined time of 91 secs (3 fastest times). This ensured that the Team secured 2nd place overall – a superb effort by them all.
The 1m Balmoral Qualifiers was in as soon as the previous classes Individuals were completed. This was approx. 5pm. We had only three girls in the team, so they all had to score for the team to qualify for Balmoral. First in was Emily Black on Bear. It has been a while since these two have been able to complete for the school in these events, so it was lovely to see them back. The two looked quite comfortable the whole way round – one pole down in the first phase with a clear timed phase. A strong round. Next in was Tess Wallace on Rusty – a timely jump up in height for Tess, as otherwise we wouldn’t have had a team! There was a bit of nerves going on as after a few jumps, Rusty began to have a few doubts about some of the fences. However, with Tess’s guidance and control, he got through and will live to jump another day. Finally, we had Rebecca-Jane Woods on Billy. The pair were looking quite comfortable as they jumped the fences and continued to do so as they progressed round the course. Unfortunately, a few ‘lazy hooves’ cost some fences, resulting in the team not scoring well enough to go to Balmoral. Ah well, there’s always next year ????
Finally – just so we could say that ERGS had competed in every class today, Rebecca-Jane and Henry entered the 1m10 event. A formidable height and one to which Henry is accustomed to jumping. Today however, he had decided it wasn’t for him, much to the frustration of his young rider. Hopefully next time he will be in better form.
And that concludes the day’s eventing! A great day for all our riders from Year 8 to Year 11. We look forward to the next event when we will no doubt have these riders and hopefully a few more competing for ERGS.
Thanks as always to the parents for their unfailing support of their children and of the ERGS Showjumping Team.
(Report by R. McIntosh)