Equestrian girls riding high at pony club camp

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A highlight in the Arran riding Club calendar is undoubtedly the much anticipated pony club camp which, this year, saw 11 children enjoying an entire weekend of equestrian activities at Balgowan Farm.

Leaving little time for boredom it was an action packed weekend with all the riders brushing up their skills with encouraging tuition from Jen McNeish. Under Jen’s patient guidance all of the young riders made significant progress in their abilities and many learned new skills that they can now practise.

On Saturday the girls all ran off some steam before dinner by trying out the jumps sans horses. Later they all experienced driving a pony thanks to Janis Murchie who kindly brought Woody along. Everyone loved having a turn guiding him around the cones, and leaning out as the back step – a crucial job in keeping the carriage level. Later the children had the opportunity to try their hand at some TREC obstacles and that evening there was a mass hack up the hill.

On Sunday all had a warm-up lesson and spent time plaiting their ponies in the morning. Then all the ponies came out together to enjoy some gymnkhana races. This gave the riders a chance to test out their accuracy of steering and stopping, and for some, a chance to practice their newfound speed.

Finally the parents arrived and everyone gathered round to watch each combination perform a dressage test and a round of jumps.  Fancy manes and tails were the order of the day, and it was plain to see how much all the riders had learned over the weekend.

The Arran Riding Club committee organise, with the assistance of club members, a number of events throughout the year, a showjumping competition, a showing show, training days, lectures and demonstrations and they also assist with the running of the annual Farmers’ Society Show.

                                                                                                                 Elanor McNamara 

Raffles and Jenny Currie tackle the low branches in style during their TREC session. No_B22pony01

Everyone enjoyed a hack up the hill. No_B22pony02

Rosie McNamara and Kizzy fly round the jumping. No_B22pony03

Janis Murchie brought Woody and his carriage along and everyone had a turn driving and being back step. No_B22pony04

Niamh Gosman and Harriet Lucas fly over the traditional unmounted ‘chase me charlie’. No_B22pony05

Harriet Lucas and Prince enjoy the jumping. No_B22pony06

Rosie Wilkinson and Milo enjoy a gallop together. No_B22pony07

Fancy manes and tails were order of the day. Lucy Blair and Carney. No_B22pony08

Sophie Smythe on Cocoa perform their dressage test. No_B22pony09

All the young riders and their horses. Left to right: Niamh Gosman and Fred, Rosie Wilkinson and Milo, Lisa Henderson and Teddy, Grace Popplewell and Fudge, Rosie McNamara and Kizzy, Eva McCrae and Lily Currie’s Missy, Harriet Lucas and Hollie Adamson’s Prince, Jenny Currie and Janis Murchie’s Raffles, Chloe McNeil and Bonnie, Lucy Blair and Emma Popplewell’s Carney, Sophie Smythe and Emma Popplewell’s Cocoa. No_B22pony10