NEWS > Dressage
Posted by Heather Stewart on 13/12/2018.

Bert Gibson reports from the Australian Dressage Championships 2018

Philippa Cassidy, Peter Gibson and myself with Neverfelde Raphael and Voltaire set sail on the Spirit of Tasmania on Tuesday 4th October bound for Victoria to attend the Australian Dressage Championships.

One might think the horses are seasoned travellers across the Strait with Raf having been across 11 times and Hugo around 8 times, but I can assure you all, it never gets any easier and one is very happy to arrive and unload at their temporary home. 

We had organized horse accommodation at Bittern which is around half an hours drive north of Boneo. This worked well as the property had lovely facilities and made it easy to do daily training and nice paddock rest time and stabling at night. We had organized some training sessions with Peter Fischer so we were set for a productive time, or so we thought. The horses had other ideas. They seemed settled but both were a bit off their game. So for all our good planning things didn’t quite progress how we might have wished.  

All good though and we kept to plan, got some help, kept managing the horses and headed into Boneo for the Championships on Monday 15th October. Linda had already arrived and was well settled ably helped by Judy Atkinson and Mandy who arrived the next day. Sharni and KT caught up with us on Tuesday and helped with any questions and difficulties. 

Philippa and I rode in the Prix St George on Thursday. I was a little disappointed with my effort, not our best but Raf was starting to feel back to his old self.  Hugo on the other hand did a great test with Philippa finishing as top Amateur Rider in the Prix St George.

Friday was my turn to see if Raf and I could do better in the Inter I. I had a great ride. Really happy and finished in 10th place. 

Mandy had already competed in her Para classes and did an awesome job and was well placed, I think won a class and second several times.

Linda competed at Novice and Elementary on Thursday and Saturday and she did a great job, especially as it was the mare's first trip away.

Sharni and KT were very supportive and made certain we were where we should be and took photos and video of our tests. It was also nice to see other Tasmanian faces supporting us. It really makes for a feel good event when everyone bands together and offers help and encouragement.

I was asked to judge and was able to take that opportunity when I had finished competing. I very much enjoyed Judging the Medium 4.3. Some very nice combinations.

The Tassie team again showed great camaraderie and the results show we are competitive.

On a personal note I would like to thank Peter and Ann Katrin Fischer,  Sharni and KT Radford,  Philippa Cassidy, Dressage Tas and of course my Husband, Peter who is so supportive and helpful.

Bert Gibson

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