Mount Mascal Stables
Horsemanship for all
Remembering serious difficulties posed by wet weather last year, Mount Mascal Stables relished the forecast for the 2013 May Day Bank Holiday weekend – fine and dry for Bexley. And it did, indeed, turn out to be glorious with clear blue sunny skies from dawn to dusk drawing a fantastic turnout of competitors and spectators. Fifteen classes ran in three rings with something on offer for every rider, as well as refreshments – including ice cream, which sold especially well – and Tony’s Tack for shopping opportunities.
In Ring One, Adam Heitman was judge throughout for the Showjumping classes. Adam currently competes on the circuit with his own horse Belle Caretino – including recently at Royal Windsor – and is our Assistant Chief Instructor. Adam reported an excellent day with riders and horses generally behaving well and producing ‘the goods’. The Class 4 Teams entries were a record breaking 18 and there were very high numbers in the Minimus class. Some competitors did query why this class was not split. Secretary, Carley-Ann Hartigan explains ‘On the day entries more than doubled the advance entry numbers for this class. We would like to encourage everyone to enter in advance to benefit from discounted fees. And, this would help us to make decisions ahead of the day with regard to amending rules – for example splitting a class.’
In Ring Two, Alison Window, Proprietor judged the Working Hunter Classes. Competitors benefitted from Alison’s expert eye and experience hunting with her family since her childhood with the Ashford Valley. A first-time competitor was particularly relieved to have such friendly guidance and thoughtfully passed her appreciation to the judge via the Secretary. Alison reported that, while riders and horses jumped well, she did have some suggestions for improvement. Here is her advice. ‘Displays need to be planned to demonstrate capability to ride over open country and practiced to perfection at home for confidence and fluency in the ring. Try good sized figures of eight in walk, trot and canter, with gallop along the length of the field. Small circles round the judge really don’t do you justice. And remember, in the hunting field you need to be practical. You may need to get on and off your horse, as well as manage gates and get out of the way quickly. So, mounting from the ground, rein back and perhaps a turn on the forehand could be included. And, make sure your turnout is correct and immaculate. This will be expected on the hunting field as a matter of courtesy and respect. With loose long hair and bare hands you will simply look un-dressed. If you are not sure, ask someone who hunts or do some research. In today’s online world, the information is very accessible and not at all exclusive or just for those already in the know.’ With Alison expecting her first baby in September, the Riding Classes were judged by Hilary Grant and our thanks go to her.
In Ring Three, the In Hand Classes offered opportunities for the very young and novice horse and/or rider to gain experience. As well as the more formal Lead Rein, Young Handler and In Hand, competitors enjoyed fun no restrictions chances with Handsome Gelding and Prettiest Mare. We would like to sincerely thank our neighbour and visiting local judge, Tina Craske for taking time out her yard, ‘Greenacres’ to spend the day with us.
During the show and since, especially on our Facebook page, we have had very positive feedback. The show was well-organised and run with competitors enjoying the on-hand immediate support of a highly experienced team who are always happy to help with any eventuality. Thank you to everyone who attended. We hope you enjoyed your day and we look forward to seeing you again soon.
For full results and information about our up-coming events, services and facilities visit www.mountmascalstables.co.uk https://www.facebook.com/mountmascal.stables