Old favourite resumes fine form

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Bob GarnantCountryman
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The 2010–11 campdraft season resumed at the weekend at Capel as both riders and horses hit their straps after a seven-week break.

As the town’s pony club grounds filled up with an instant city of floats, 570 competitive entrants were anxious to saddle up for a true grit performance.

There was no stopping Henry Clifton, of Boyanup, who scored the draft’s highest 92-point ride to win the restricted open on Saturday.

Riding his 2010 Quilty winner, Haycliff Sambo, the pair is setting new standards as they continue their successful run into the New Year.

“It seems I only have to just hang on as my stallion, who is in brilliant form, just keeps getting better, ” the 71-year-old said.

“Cattle selection was somewhat easier at Coolup as was the quality throughout.”

Earlier in the day, Allister Butcher, of Dalwallinu, riding Outspan True Blue, won the novice event against a field of 205 entries.

It was the 31-year-old shire worker’s first campdraft win on a horse bred and trained by his father, Lance.

In the encouragement draft, Judy Gale scored well on Coy Boy to win against 46 others.

Also going well on Saturday was juvenile drafter Brendon Wood, 16, who scored a personal best 91-point ride on Daddy’s Stylish Kat to win on the day.

Sunday’s maiden event also recorded another high 91-point ride when John Ritson, of Boyup Brook, was victorious in the final.

Ritson rode Black Tie, a horse owned by Jo Melville, who also competed at Capel.

“The horse responded well in the cut-out, ” Ritson said.

It took a tie-breaker between three competitors before Dan Steers was judged most consistent in the cut-out, riding Talawahl Double Image.

One of the highlights of the weekend came in the open draft where there were 87 entries.

In his first year of open competition, Scott Rogers, of Albany, was sensational riding Fernvale Centennial, a Stockhorse owned by John and Ann Edgley.

The 17-year-old, just out of school, is keen to become a career horse trainer and now has a goal of developing a stable of top drafting stayers.

“I was inspired by all the help along the way from so many of WA’s respected campdrafters, ” Scott said.

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