‘This is ho w shows should be’ s ays UK judg e of Royal show
AN equestrian judge has flown in from the United King dom t o judg e some of the equestrian e vents at this y ear’s R oyal Show.
Lesley Whitehall set foot in South Africa for the first time last Thursday evening as a judge of the Royal Show’s equestrian showing clas s division.
Whitehall said she was approached last September while at a show in the UK and asked if she w anted to be a judg e at the Royal Show. “It w as cold, it w as raining and when I was asked, I said I absolutely would,” said W hitehall.
Whitehall has been a judge twice at the Horse of the Year show in the UK and seven times at the Royal International Horse show.
She said she had been a judegfor “nearly every major c ounty show” in the UK as well as the Grand Nationals in Australia.
Whitehall has been impr essed with South Africa. She said she had alr eady made a “w hole ne w f amily” within the country’s eque strian cir cle. “It is so r efreshing to judge here in South Africa. “Everyone loves their horses,” she said. She said in the UK, hor ses make a fair amount of money and are therefore produced for riding but the riders do not ride every day as South African rider s do.
She said this is because most people in the UK are unable to stable them privately and see them whenever they like. “It has been a fabulous competition and I’ve thoroughly enjo yed it. T his is ho w sho ws should be.”
Whitehall said she would be flying back to the UK tonight, but intends to return soon and to bring her f amily along with her. Speaking on behalf of the shwo’s organiser, D arryn M cIntosh, sho w dir ector Leanne Jamieson said it was a privilege to have “such a capable, experienced and delightfully ent ertaining judg e all the w ay from the UK ”.
“Her enthusiasm has been soerfreshing and we look f orward to having her o ver again ne xt y ear f or a big ger and bet ter show,” said J amieson.
“We also look forward to showing Lesley more of our beautiful c ountry.”
“It is so refreshing t o judge her e in South A frica. Everyone lo ves their hor ses.”
UKbased eque strian sho w judg e L esley Whit ehall (l eft) with the eque strian show dir ector L eanne Jamie son at the R oyal Sho wgrounds y esterday. Whit ehall flew fr om the UK t o p articipate as a judg e in this y ear’s sho w.