Over the weekend of 9 and 10 July a number of Area 5 members took part in the Tetrathlon Competition at Warwick. For the Open, Intermediate and Junior classes these were the qualifiers for the Championships and I’m delighted to say that Area 5 will now be well represented at the Champs. Those qualifying were:
- Open – Ben Read
- Intermediate – Toby Johnson and Russell Wingfield
- Junior – Freddie Ashworth, Hamish Peffers, Orla Stott, Keeva Stott, Annabel James and Ella Booth.
A big well done to all of them and I hope they are all looking forward to competing at Bishop Burton in August.
Warwick once again put on fantastic courses for our younger members so that minis, tadpoles and tiddlers all had their own competitions. A further fifteen Area 5 members took part in these classes, with some excellent results. A special mention should go to Beatrice Taylor who beat 19 other mini girls to win her class.
As well as a thoroughly enjoyable competition many of the riders camped on the Saturday night and joined in the Area 5 (and friends) barbecue. Thanks to all those who provided the facilities for this – gas barbecue, fire pit, tables and chairs as well as the food, drink and company; what more could we want?
Congratulations to the Wales and Borders team which came 2nd in the recent Tetrathlon at Royal Windsor, and especially to Freddie Ashworth of Cheshire Hunt South who was second individually and won the run.
The standard was very high with barely any faults in the show jumping, which took place in front of a much bigger crowd than we usually have for tetrathlon events.
The NFU Mutual Winter Triathlon Championships were held on Sunday 13th March at Stantonbury Leisure Centre, Milton Keynes. 260 competitors from around the UK took part in the Minimus, Junior and Open competition. Area 5 had 17 competitors that had successfully achieved a place to compete at this event, all of whom performed extremely well on the day!
We had a number of highly placed competitors that deserve a special mention.
Harrison Aspinall (Cheshire Hunt South) – 1st place – Minimus Boys
Harrison had a fantastic day achieving 1st place in a class of 49 boys. He received a medal for the best swim in his class.
Freddie Ashworth (Cheshire Hunt South) – 3rd place – Junior Boy
Freddie achieved 3rd place in a large class of 42 boys. He received a medal for the best run, running 1500m in 4 minutes and 55 seconds!!
All of our Senior Boys came in the top 20 places with Russell Wingfield (Aberconwy) achieving 7th place and Toby Johnson (East Cheshire) coming a very close 8th by only 6 points.
We also had great success within the team competition with our team of Freddie Ashworth, Harrison Aspinall, Beatrice Taylor (Cheshire Hunt South) and Neisha Roberts (Flint and Denbigh) coming 4th out of the 54 teams that were entered.
A really big congratulations to all of our Area 5 competitors who qualified to achieve a place to compete in the competition and were great ambassadors for the Area.
Quiz sponsored by The NFU
Penny Read has sent a brilliant report and pictures from the Junior Regional Tetrathlon at Milton Keynes, thank you Penny!
With the horsebox only just unpacked from Windsor, we loaded up again on Friday 30th May for the trip to Milton Keynes and the Junior Regional Tetrathlon. This is the main regional competition of the year with the usual format of a boys team and girls team (and a few individuals) representing Wales & Borders. From Area 5, Ben (Boys Team) & Russell Wingfield (Aberconwy PC – Individual) were to join up with other boys from Areas 10 & 18. We were warned that conditions were less than ideal and on arrival the mud was already ankle deep on the parking field! Despite this, about 150 competitors & horses arrived from all corners of England, Ireland, Scotland& Wales over the course of Friday evening and spirits were high in the regional camps. There were 10 boys teams altogether and with Scotland and Ireland (2 teams) bringing competitors & horses such a long way (and their training & selection process so well developed), we knew these were the main teams to keep an eye on!
On Saturday morning, shooting was first and the W&B team all controlled their nerves to put in solid performances – Ben had a great score of 920 (out of 1000). Then it was off to swimming which is Ben’s weakest event, but joining Ruthin Swimming Club in the last few months really paid off as he added 14m to his personal best of just two weeks ago. The other boys swam really well and the W&B team were 5th at the end of two events. On return from the swim we set out to walk the XC course – with no more rain & warm breezes the mud levels were easing and the going looked remarkably good. The course looked challenging but fair- several jumps stood out as potential problems with combinations, tight turns, lots of flowers and the one everyone was talking about – the jump into water (a), jump in the water (b) then tight turn to a skinny (c). The dilemma was whether to attempt the tricky combination but risk 60 penalties for a stop/run out (and then probably take the ’L’ option to be safe with another 70 penalties), or take the ‘L’ option straight away,which only involved riding through the water (no jumps)
As is tradition, each team had to provide some entertainment at the evening party (pirate theme) and, as is tradition, all the teams except W&B had actually rehearsed and practiced a dance / song etc.! Despite this everyone had a good time and the boys were packed off to bed by 11ish as they were riding at 9am. Sunday brought hot sunny weather (hurrah!) and the team looked great in their red XC colours. The XC proved to be the challenge it promised with only 19 (out of 63) boys going clear – including two of the W&B team. Ben had one stop and the other two just a few more penalties but the Team did well enough to rise to 4th with just the run to go. The run was around undulating fields of long grass and sticky mud but times were still amazingly fast, particularly for the Irish. The boys retained their 4th place overall with Scotland winning and the two Irish teams in 2nd & 3rd. Huge thanks must go to the organisers and land owners for letting the competition go ahead given the ground conditions leading up to the event and we will take away lots of good memories of a really friendly & exciting competition.
Penny & Ben Read