There’s nothing like horsing around together

TRADITIONAL horsemanship skills were celebrated last weekend at the Tasmanian Mountain Cattlemen’s Association’s annual Get Together. Hundreds of people gathered at the Brown family’s property Harveydale near Westbury for the event, which has now been running for 34 years. Many camped for the weekend at the Get Together, which is one of the state’s most popular horse events.

Tanya Bowman, who lives at Bracknell, has attended every Get Together except the very first one and was introduced to the event by her father. “Dad and I started to go. He loved it so that’s how I got started too,” she said. Mrs Bowman said the Get Together was a highlight for her every year. “It’s just such a great event and the atmosphere is really good,” she said. “I just love it and my girls did when they were younger and used to come to. We just love coming along and having a nice relaxing weekend.”

A large program of competitive events gave the horse enthusiasts plenty to keep them busy. This year the hotly contested TMCA championships attracted 28 competitors from across the state.

The championship is divided into three sections, catering for riders of all ages, with the youngest taking part in the Striplings Championship while slightly older competitors contested the junior championship and the remaining riders were in the running for the senior championship title.

Competitors were required to take part in four different competition sections through the day, testing the skills of both themselves and their horses. These included a handy stock horse obstacle course, whipcracking and cattle handling. The top horse and rider combinations in each section then took part in a time trial in the main arena to determine the final placings.

In the Striplings Championship, sisters Gemma and Marli King proved the ones to beat. Gemma came first on Riverdale Mocha, while Marli placed second riding LaMore Eclipse. Third went to Erin Kelly and Tow Gums Romeo.

In the Junior Championship, Ruby Hirst and Butterscotch Brittle came first. Second went to Sharna Dolby and GI Joe and in third place was Shannon Kelly and Two Gums Wynesk.

Competition in the senior championship was fierce but this year first place went to previous winner Tom Steele and his Australian Stock Horse Rosebrook Resolute. In second place was Tayah Scott and her Australian Stock Horse Secretheart Rivoli Flame and third place went to Sarah Woodruff and Eurella Appollo.