Yalambi a world-class event

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Bob GarnantCountryman
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While Melbourne, Pirelli and Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel were holding their grip on Grand Prix dollars, a South West family was using real horsepower to raise the bar.

The Hovell family, of Wilyabrup in the Margaret River wine region, hosted their second annual Yalambi Jumping Classic on the weekend.

“Other than our continued interest in breeding and training world-class horses, we have a vision to make the Yalambi Festival one of Australia’s leading equestrian events and, ultimately, host international jumping competitions,” Rory Hovell said.

No expense was spared in the 2011 Classic to realise those dreams, as some of WA’s best horses and riders performed brilliantly among the beautiful grounds of the Yalambi Farm Stud.

“After many years in the planning, the grounds are ready for a world class event,” Mr Hovell said.

Pascale Young, of Mosman Park — who jumped for the first time at the Classic — said she was thrilled to win the 1.40m AM5 riding her experienced horse, Pico Bella.

The Curtin University student has competed well in the Australian Championships Young Rider Qualifiers in Canberra, placing the highest (third) of any rider from WA.

In the jump-off of the 1.25m Future Stars AM5 were Alison Rowland, of Wilyabrup, and Matt Godwin.

With both riders going clear for two rounds, Rowland was declared the winner after completing the course in the fastest time.

The Yalambi horse trainer said she was thrilled to win the event that Rory Hovell won in 2010.

Young rider Lauren Brewer, of Wanneroo, repeated her victory of last year in the 14B event on her new Arabian pony.

When she’s not at school, the ambitious 13-year-old said she divided her time between riding her three horses and hip-hop dancing.

“My pony was grooving to a good beat this weekend,” Brewer said.

The Hovell family will be hosting the WA A&B Young Rider Championships on September 24–25.

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