Equestrian rides out right on time

Ovens & Murray Advertiser - - FRONT PAGE - BYCORAL COOKSLEY

A SKIL­FUL win for 14-year-old Al­lans Flat rider Ti­ahn Barnard in a ‘Ride to time’ horse event se­ries landed the young equestrian a place in the Vic­to­rian fi­nals last month.

The com­pe­ti­tion fol­lowed the young horse­woman’s 119.99 split-sec­ond win in the North East zone where her top two re­sults in four events were used to de­ter­mine se­lec­tion for the state fi­nals.

These per­for­mances, which have an ideal com­ple­tion time of 120 sec­onds, took place on a 1000-me­tre cross-coun­try course aimed at teach­ing pony club com­peti­tors the skill of rid­ing to a given pace.

Ti­ahn part­nered Cavallo Co-Pi­lot, her 12 year-old un­raced thor­ough­bred, in the com­pe­ti­tion.

The Ker­gun­yah Pony Club and Beech­worth Sec­ondary Col­lege equestrian team mem­ber came fifth on her mount, with a time of 118.88 sec­onds, in the state fi­nal – a joint ini­tia­tive of Racing Vic­to­ria (RV) and Pony Club As­so­ci­a­tion of Vic­to­ria.

“Ti­ahn was one of the youngest com­peti­tors among 19 fi­nal­ists from pony clubs around Vic­to­ria with some of the com­peti­tors in their twen­ties,” said Lau­reen Barnard, her mother.

The fi­nals were held on a Moonee Val­ley race day.

“I was re­ally ac­cu­rate with my times at Be­nalla in the heats and the zone fi­nal, but in the state fi­nal I just lost a bit of con­cen­tra­tion with the crowd and ex­cite­ment,” Ti­ahn said.

“I would love a chance to do it all again and do a sub-one sec­ond time at Moonee Val­ley.”

As a Vic­to­rian fi­nal­ist Ti­ahn was of­fered a track work po­si­tion and coach­ing when old enough with the Vic­to­ria Racing Acad­emy.

But Lau­reen said Ti­ahn en­tered the se­ries just to im­prove her cross-coun­try pac­ing skills.

The Beech­worth Sec­ondary Col­lege Montes­sori-stream stu­dent trav­els Vic­to­ria and in­ter­state most week­ends for pony club events.

PHOTO: Issie Hill

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