2013 had EQUITANA return to NSW once again. Held at the Sydney Olympic Park at the wonderful facilities offered at the Showground precinct, the event saw an action packed schedule of competition, exhibition, education and demonstrations turn the venue in the mecca of all things equine.
The Competition program saw a mix of traditional competition in with some innovative and exciting now introductions to the EQUITANA portfolio; with a welcome to the Western Breeds Halter Classic and the Man from Snowy River Legend’s Challenge, which was judged on a cumulative score from Pack Horse and Shoeing, Stock Handling, Cross Country, Bareback Obstacle, Whip Crack, Time Trial, and Buckjumping challenges, and also the new indoor concept for Exhibition Eventing.
Notable results include:
- Australia beating Great Britain by 2 goals in the exciting Horseball match
- Well accoladed Aussie, and three time EQUITANA Reining Champion Warren Backhouse taking out the open Reining championships on Anita Ganzer’s “Rocin On The Ranch”
- Sam Lyle on Carson Hill take out the Be The Influence Equestrian Grand Final in Exhibition Eventing
- Victorian Tim Clarke on the talented Caltango claim victory in the Be the Influence Equestrian Grand Final World Cup Jumping
- Olympian Heath Ryan on the spectacular stallion Regardez Moi claimed his hat trick in the Be The Influence Equestrian Grand Final Dressage Freestyle
- Brother David and John Mitchell take home the winnings in the inaugural Man From Snowy River Legend’s Challenge
- NSW’s own Leslie Moore blitz the hotly contested 2013 EQUITANA Australian Open Barrel Racing Championships
With hundreds of retailers from all over the country as well as overseas , the exhibition once again offered a retail respite for all enthusiastic equestrians. With traders offering everything from fashion to fodder, shoes to supplements, spectators were treated to their usual mix of bargains together with exposure to some terrific products new to the market and exclusively launched at EQUITANA.
Once again the education sector exposed audiences to presenters of the highest calibre. Man of the moment Carl Hester together with Nicky Barrett joined us from the UK enthusiastically encouraging of Australia, and appreciative of the interactivity with the crowd.
US Master Horseman Al Dunning was not only delightful to work with, but the bursting arena also proved he was most popular with spectators.Long time EQUITANA Mates Pat and Linda Parelli proved as popular as ever, delivering their informative process of developing partnerships with your horses.
Special events were again a much revered feature of EQUITANA, this year we were pleased to see the Inaugural Mitavite Walers Legacy. Australian War Waler horses were a tough and hardy breed and only one returned back to Australia from the war campaigns.
Today thousands of Walers still run free in Central Australia and are being regularly culled. When their plight was brought to the attention of EQUITANA Australia a new project was created to profile the wonderful Waler horse at EQUITANA Sydney 2013.
"The Mitavite Waler Legacy" showcased the beauty and versatility of these horses that are part of our Australian Heritage and how we can still value them today. Six Waler horses were selected from Central Australia and matched to six trainers from different disciplines for late 2013. These 6 horses were named after famous Waler or term associated with the military, with their stories a reminder of the contribution these horses made to Australian troops during the war. Following remarkable transformations from wild horses to beautifully educated companions, it is hoped this legacy continues to bring awareness to the breed.
In addition, an extensive program of daily demonstrations saw spectators treated to an array of over 200 informative sessions ranging from saddle fitting, to training for cowboy dressage, liberty work, even legal advice for equestrians.
The Double Dans did not fail to entertain crowds each day - entertainment, education and training is what the boys are all about and they certainly raised the bar. The crowds enjoyed spectacular opening to the Reining night that included great riding with fire whips and pyrotechnics; daily entertainment segments with specials guest such as Brett Parbery, Paul Tapner and Clayton Fredericks were great success.
EQUITANA once again delivered the unique concept that it is renowned for; an all-encompassing, holistic showcase of all things that celebrate the horse. Containing to drive innovation in competition, exposure to educators, and the ultimate in horsey retail therapy, we could not be more thrilled with the event.
Sincere thanks to the visitors, exhibitors, presenters, volunteers and the sponsors.