JAMES Hetherington was a little disappointed with his results at the North and North West Showjumping Club’s Indoor Show Jumping Championships in Tamworth’s AELEC on the weekend and hopes to improve on that in Canberra this weekend and then at the Sydney Royal Easter Show.
The 19-year-old equestrian competed in various classes including the feature Peel River Produce Grand Prix.
Sydney Olympian Ron Easy won that Grand Prix on his niece’s horse, Made You Look, blitzing the second round going fast and clear after Queenslanders Clem Smith, David Goodwin and Lachlan Manuel had all gone clear.
The Queenslanders had dominated day one of the competition. Clem Smith, from Gatton in South East QLD, won theAvro Glass 1.30m class on Friday afternoon with a second round time of 29.95 seconds riding Guru. Lachlan Manuel on Renmarno was second, David Goodwin on Warrego Jetson third and Shane Davidson on Fairbanks Lulu fourth. Nic Carraro from the Central Coast was the only rider from NSW to make the places.
Course designer Warren Priestly from Nowra NSW, was impressed with the standard of horses at the show.
“These horses all look great and the Queenslanders are keen to jump after all the rain they have had. It’s been a great competition.”
Other important events on the program included the Forty Winks Future Stars Class won by Ron Easy and Made You Look. The NSW Amateur Series Class was won by Nathan Carswell and Cool Customer. The Ray White Garvin & Cousins Junior Championship was won by Brooke Langbecker and He’s Henry, and the Healthy Inspirations Young Rider Championship was won by Natalie McNeill and Vasandra. The Peter Hoffman Memorial Cup 1.25m Grand Prix was won by Jess Brown and Yirkalla Elrado.
For James Hetherington there were slim pickings but he was happy enough with the way his 10-year-old gelding, Masterclass, and 11yo warmblood Jay Bee Caribus fared.
“Masterclass finished eighth and the other one (Jay Bee Caribus) was having his first start in a Grand Prix. He knocked two down.”
Masterclass, James said, is “going to the Sydney Royal” and will also go to Canberra Show this weekend.
“He’s a good up and coming horse,” James said.
A graduate from Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School he has been working casually preparing horses for their Sydney owners.
At one stage he was also riding a bit of work for Barry Lockwood in Tamworth before Lockwood moved to Queensland.
“That was good fun,” James said also pointing to the fact Lockwood has trained a number of winners in Brisbane recently including winning three in a row with Tokamak.
However it’s not all about showjumping and riding for James.
In July he’s off to uni.
“I’ll be studying journalism,” he said with a little grin.
He’s had some auctioneering experience and worked for the Magic Millions during their big Gold Coast sales and would like nothing better than to become involved in that side of the racing game.
However that all depends on how his showjumping develops.