Showing off the Standardbred

26 Feb

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Categories: Feb 2016

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Showing Off the Standardbred

Standardbreds are back at HOY and they’re attracting plenty of attention.

Entries have been solid for the section, and a joint sponsorship venture between the New Zealand Standardbred Association and NRM means winners and place-getters will get a little extra for their efforts.

There are 14 classes in the standardbred section with some attracting 10 and more entries, some of whom are travelling from Christchurch for the show.

standardbred ridden

Standardbred Gotham Bromac. Photo by Christina Bird Photography

The titles being tussled for are the Inhand Standardbred of the Year and the Ridden Standardbred of the Year.

HOY first hosted standardbred classes in 2012 where they had just two classes. Section coordinator Claire Madden said plenty had gone in to bringing an entire section to the show.

“It has been a huge collaboration between the North Islands Standardbred Association and the Standardbred Breeders Association.

“The SBA affiliated the breed to the Royal Agricultural Society for us and we have been working closely with them to get classes at HOY . . . it has finally paid off,” said Madden, who is also the secretary of the North Island Standardbred Association.

“We have a great group of people who are very passionate about the breed, promoting them as a sport horse and showing what they can really do.”

Madden is very much, one of those people. She got involved with standardbreds when living in Christchurch. She worked for Nevel R Stud before moving to Bromac Lodge where she prepared yearlings for the sales, and then to harness racing trainer Ken Barron.

However, it wasn’t until she moved to Auckland six years ago that she got a standardbred for a riding horse. For a woman who had competed for most of her life, it was quite a change.

“My partner is a harness racing trainer and driver, as well as a farrier.”

They breed a few mares, race two and Madden now has three standardbreds in the competition arena. She juggles that with her duties with the NISA, the Kumeu Trotting Club where she is also secretary, and as a committee member for the Auckland Trotting Owners Association.

“You could say I am quite deep in standardbreds!”

Gotham Bromac is her main horse. Ironically, she first met him as a yearling she prepared for the sales when working for Bromac Lodge.

“He was bought by my partner’s father as a two-year-old, and just last year had his first season under saddle. He’s gone from strength to strength, clearing maidens and taking many champions.”

He also took all the ridden showing awards at the NISA prize-giving, and was novice champion at the North Island Side Saddle Champs – in his first outing in side saddle. He’ll be at HOY along with Major Ouch, who was given to her by Lincoln Farms after finished his racing career.

Madden and her partner got him back to racing where he won the Taranaki Cup. That sits proudly alongside his prizes as an in hand and ridden show horse, and a 30-kilometre endurance horse.

Standardbreds at HOY will be judged on a variety of things, including best senior mare and gelding, manners, movement, showmanship and a raft of ridden classes too.

The classes are all held at the Polo Grounds on Friday (March 4), starting at 10am.

A standardbred horse is one that is bred to race as a trotter or pacer.



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