Each year we have three rings of Horse and Pony Classes running, both ridden classes and in-hand, to suit many different breeds and all ages of horses and rider. As we are hunting county with the Bedale, West of Yore and Zetland all local to us, we hold popular working and show hunter classes and with Middleham, the northern home of racing, on the doorstep the re-trained racehorses are well supported in terms of competition, enthusiasm and kind local sponsorship.
We are dedicated to the idea that Wensleydale show should still be about equestrian sport being accessible to all and anyone being able to bring their equine and ‘have a go’. We encourage local and homegrown talent by retaining some classes unaffiliated to give everyone a chance and varying the classes a little year to year so that there is something for everyone.
This year is no exception- we’ve got a one-time-only donkey class, fancy dress for adults and children alike and have designed classes for family horses and ‘rising stars’ that are not necessarily show animals but have a lot to give. The aim is to offer a chance to equines and riders hidden away at home that wouldn’t normally be able to come to the live show – so we’re hoping that people respond to this and submit entries from all horses great and small, fluffy and all!
We are fortunate to have some cracking local talent in terms of Judges- Rosie Fitz-George draws on years of teaching and riding experience, Lynne Thornton runs a successful local livery yard and her passion for donkey’s knows no bounds and the Berry family are intrinsic to equestrian life locally and devoted to the work of the Injured Jockeys’ Fund.
I am very grateful to our judges and sponsors and do hope to see lots of entries, from our dedicated regulars and new faces both equine and human!
CHAMPION OF SECTION is awarded to EQ5-2 – Best Family Horse
Congratulations to Etty Bratley, The Bratley family and Candy!
“There have been some interesting entries for this year’s show and some worthy winners and
runners up. All entrants have made a special effort to enter what has been a unique event.
I have tried to choose a horse/pony that can fit every requirement of what a truly exceptional
year this has been for all the wrong reasons, and it seemed to me that the Family Horse has
emulated the kind of versatility that we have all had to show this year. This Connemara
mare is a ‘Mare for all Seasons’. The family seem to derive enormous pleasure from her,
and she is an integral part of the family, serving three generations of family. She is kind and
well-mannered and fits into the hand of a very well fitted glove with the family that she is
owned by and is well looked after much loved.” (Judge Rosie Fitz-George)
Our Judges comments:
Video of an individual show of your choice, to include: a square halt sideways on to camera, walk and trot on both reins and a canter with feathers flying! Max 4 mins
All requested elements should be shown as they are featured for a reason- the halt sideways on is to assess him being a good stamp of a horse- in good condition, shiny coat, optimum body condition in terms of weight and well-muscled for riding. On the walk and trot on both reins they should be sound (show no lameness) and steady, biddable and listening to the rider’s aids. They should move off, change speed and stop on cue and look a comfortable, responsive ride. At least a short spell of canter will show off their feathering to best effect and show that they can be forward going and move powerfully to be a pleasurable ride yet keep calm and under control and stop safely.
We have put this class on in memory of Alan Hutchinson who as well as being a key committee member and organiser for the show, stewarded the Heavy Horse Section for several years. He enjoyed the spectacle and understood the historic importance of heavy horses at the show and did his utmost to encourage entries in a climate where keeping, breeding and decorating heavy horses is a dying art. He had considered starting a ridden class as it would open up opportunities for people who owned heavy horses purely for the pleasure of riding them. Sadly, he never got to see this come to fruition. We hope that it will be well supported as a fitting tribute to Alan, whom we all miss for his calm, kind presence and dedication.
Concours d’elegance- any horse, any vehicle (still photograph taken since last show)
Concours d’elegance is always about the overall picture being pleasing on the eye. The horse and vehicle should be a good match and the driver and groom’s dress appropriate for the style and age of the turnout. Harness leather, reins etc should match and fit the horse well. Grooming, harness work and vehicle should be immaculate and any equipment such as whips, aprons, lamps etc correct and in-keeping and in terms of the photograph, it should be posed well with horses attentive as if they would take you out for a pleasant afternoon drive!
Donkeys photographed stood for a show or in their natural home environment are considered equally
Donkey to be in condition fit to photograph, CUTE and local as defined in rule 13:
(Local classes are confined to entrants residing within a ten-mile radius of Leyburn Market Place or within the remaining catchment area of the River Ure to the west)
(still, side-on photograph)
Judged on conformation, condition and star appeal. Any breed, sex, colour or type as they will be judged on their own merit as a horse that has not yet taken a turn in showing but would be a good prospect.
Freestyle with safety in mind- could include: obstacle course, trick, opening a gate/ a change of rider
The world is your oyster! Horse should be friendly, safe and biddable for all the family – show us what they can do!
(Still photograph, mounted or with horse in hand)
Adults the more hilarious the better
(Still photograph, mounted or with horse in hand)
children the more imaginative the better!
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We’re pleased to be supporting our local community in the Wensleydale Show for the 7th year on the trot and we’re especially delighted to be involved in the first online version. Wishing the best of luck to the show organisers and competitors!
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We are hoping for some tough competition in the horse section this year and who better qualified to judge this year’s talent but a very talented equestrienne herself, Rosie Fitz-George.
Rosie has been a riding instructor for 34 years and an equine specialist throughout her professional career. She has worked as an international event groom and with grade A showjumpers and for the past 20 years as a senior equine university & college lecturer and head of department, so she loves encouraging young riders and has spent a lifetime promoting the sport.
She has extensive experience in a wide range of disciplines, from intermediate eventing to playing polo and being a keen endurance rider, she has competed in the Golden series on her own homebred horses and organised the Golden Horse Shoe qualifier for over a decade. Closer to home Rosie spent 10 years as County Bridleways Officer for North Yorkshire.
These achievements have led to great opportunities in recent years including being an international inspector for the BHS and timekeeper for the London Olympics in 2012.
I live in the lovely market town of Bedale, where I farm Springfield Farm, a small mixed farm of fattening cattle and arable crops, with my son. We diversified in the 90’s into livery, originally to help ends meet, but it grew beyond our expectation and we are now the proud owners of a successful and busy yard with extensive equestrian facilities and 18 boxes for DIY livery.
Donkeys first came to Springfield in 1991 when we got a seaside donkey for winter for our children, this lovely lady never went back to the beach as she turned out to be in foal. Several others have followed over the years and have played their parts in school nativities and Palm Sunday parades. I have a strong passion for these lovely animals and look forward to seeing your entries.