IT is reining hard at the AELEC this week as the 2016 Reining Australia Gold Buckle Futurity and National Championships officially jumped on Wednesday.
Australia’s largest reining event has grown even more this year as a record 460 runs have been entered in the five day event, with the Open Gold Buckle Futurity and Open Non-Pro Futurity the feature events in a huge program.
Reining Australia president Paul Sharp said that this years championships has attracted competitors and judges from all over the world, with so much interest that they were forced to start a day earlier than planned to fit it all in after the Green Rider program got underway on Tuesday.
“We have got riders from all over Australia as well as a few from New Zealand, France and the USA,” Sharp said.
“We have got riders from all over Australia as well as a few from New Zealand, France and the USA,
This year two international judges in Italy’s Phillips Maso and the USA’s Ann Salmon-Anderman will be presiding over all events this year, and with a top drawer field will have their work cut out for them.
Reining is a western competition that sees a rider put their horse through a pattern of circles, spins and stops.
“I am very happy with the field we have drawn this year,” Sharp said. “Some of the riders have recently returned from the World Series in the States last year and I was very pleased with how they finished over there.”
This year the Gold Buckle Futurity has been moved to Friday evening, with the Non-Pro and Derby’s to finish up the program on Saturday.
“We have moved the Gold Buckle to Friday so we can have two main nights,” Sharp said.
“We would like to see a good crowd come out and have a look.”
Entry is free for spectators with competition starting at 7am and finishing at 7pm every day.