Central Plateau, North Island

Central Plateau, North Island
View from a friend's farm

Sunday, 5 October 2014

A Day at Foxton with about 500 Horses



Manawatu Pony Club National Showhunter Championship

Warning, this is photo heavy

Friday was  practice day at the Foxton Racecourse for the above event. I cannot say how many riders there were, maybe 500, equal number of horses, parents helping, volunteers on the gates, at each ring, judges sitting and carefully evaluating each rider in turn.

Our granddaughter Danielle was in this, the first really big event for her.

I decided to take the smaller  18-55mm lens, no tripod, as I had no idea how far we night have to walk, how large the crowds would be and if I would be close enough to use a tripod. Well, lesson learnt, the tripod would have been a breeze, and the telephoto lens, lots of railings to rest on, everywhere.  Even so , I still have 200 photos to sort out, discard and edit. There was hardly any sunshine, dull clouds, too much wind, and I struggled to get enough lighting in any photo.

This is the first instalment of a wonderful day   Mouse over each photo for the title.

There were covered stalls, and open ones. Danielle’s  stall for her horse Fire was somewhere near the horse with the red cover.

Horse yards #2Some of the horse yards

Horse trucks came in all sizes, from a single float, to a home on wheels, generators going, drivers having a snooze, and more.

Foxton #22, one of the larger horse transporters


Foxton #23 maybe the largest one here today

I was repeatedly warned “ Mum, keep away from the back legs!! Don’t stand  there, the horses walk down here!! Walk the other way, the horses are waiting for their turn!! You and Dad, sit in those chairs and don’t get lost!!”

But even so,I managed some close-ups.

Foxton #20 close up straight from the horse's mouth

This wee girl was from the Wairarapa, the youngest rider of the weekend.I think she is 8 years old, a real sport as she agreed for me to take her photo. Thanks so very much.


Foxton #27, the youngest rider today,  from the Wairarapa


Yes,that is me, aka the rounder than taller girl, in winter clobber.Note those gumboots, I did try to wash and clean them, but on the day, everyone had well worn, sort of clean, dirty, or totally filthy ones, so I didn’t feel ashamed at all!!!

It was very easy to see those who are often at these events,clothes to fit the day.

Foxton, the youngest rider, and Jean in winter gear

This young man was from  Waitara?? I had hoped to see him in the hack ring, but all events were running behind time, and I had to be at the first ring by 11.40, for Danielle’s next ride. Sorry Jack? # 459?? Hope you did well.

The young man from Hawera

Girls and coats of  blue, some more of the Rotorua team

Foxton #26

Foxton #25

Even the Rotorua Team Mascot has a blue coat, and why not, it was cold, very windy, and  he needed it.

Foxton #2

Foxton #21

Saddles of polished leather, sheepskin underlays?? and another liner sometimes?? As  you can see, I am not up with the technical terms!!!

Foxton #3

Danielle, finishing her second round. It was so very windy, gale force the night before, and with her next round, one of the rails was blown off, horse shied, and the judges allowed her to repeat.

Dani #1

And, after all, this would not be right if I didn’t have lots of Danielle and Fire, to finish  off.


Dani at Foxton #21Dani at Foxton #22


Dani #13


Dani #12

Foxton #30 Fire's Eye

We had a great day, and I could say there would be as many grandparents there as parents and riders, but so cold. Fleece tights, fleece pants, thick socks, gumboots, heavy weight merino top, thick fleece jacket, Gore-Tex raincoat, merino hat, and I needed every layer. I could say I was more round than tall!!!

Quotation of the day, by Amber Senti

The horse, with beauty unsurpassed,

strength immeasurable and grace unlike

any other,

still remains humble enough to carry a man upon his back.

Greetings from Jean


Leeanne said...

Looks like you did the proud grandmother job well! So much fun watching the kids. A few more events and I'm sure you will have all the correct terminology sorted! It reminded me of my pony club days, so much fun!

FlowerLady Lorraine said...

When I get to heaven I definitely want a horse of my own. I think they are such magnificent creatures and I've never really been around them. You took some great photos.

It sounds like winter has come to you already. It is 5:27 EST and is 68 with the real feel temp of 65. That is WONDERFUL. I have windows open to let in some fresh air.

Have a lovely day today and a great week.

Love and hugs ~ FlowerLady

eileeninmd said...

Wonderful post and a great event to attend.. I am sure granddaughter enjoyed showing off her riding skills and her beautiful horse. Great photos. Have a happy day and week ahead!

TexWisGirl said...

how awesome for her to have you there to watch her compete! lucky girl and beautiful horse. :)

Carol Mattingly said...

She is absolutely gorgeous and it sounds like you had a fantastic time. Her blues are gorgeous as is her steed. Hope you will put some more up on a post. Carol

Lori Skoog said...

Jean....I love this post! Big surprise right? Danielle and Fire look like a great team. Sorry it was so cold, but very glad you were there for support and to take these pictures.

Jenny said...

Looks like a great day, just a pity about the weather.

Barb said...

Jean, I'm wondering how old Danielle is? Our Amanda is 11 and has been riding since she was 5, jumping since she was about 7. She is crazy about horses and riding. I love the spotless white tights of Rotorua! I'll show Amanda your pics next time she visits.

KB Bear said...

Your granddaughter and her horse look like an incredible team. Such power and grace... I'm so glad that you were there to see it and take all of these wonderful photos!

Susan Heather said...

Looks like a great event. It must be really cold down there as the wind here feels as though it has ice in it.

Julie Fukuda said...

Looks like a great event in spite of the weather. Horses and youngsters all working together is harmony in motion.

Jennifer A. Jilks said...

This is so sweet! I love the horse shows. They dress up, have good rules of decorum to follow. Wonderful time had by all, I bet!