On Thursday, July 22nd we held a Para Equestrian Boot Camp which was funded by DWA and the EWA Sports fund. Five riders - Rosa-Lee Principe, Fleur Litster, Andrew Forbes, Chelsea Dejonge and Suzin Wells took part.
It was called a Boot Camp and although the riders and horses didn’t have to do hours of exercise it was a day of intensive learning, riding and discussing. Originally it was planned to have Virginia Creed head up the Team of herself, Lisa Baker and Elaine Greene as she was also coming to work with members of the Perth Dressage Club but, as was the case last year, COVID got in the way and Virginia couldn’t come to WA.
Thank goodness for Gill Botten who willingly stepped up to fill the Judging and Coaching role, at very short notice. Thank you Gill – you did such an amazing job.
The day began with each of the five participants riding a PE Test of their choice, which was judged by Lisa Baker an FEI 3* PE Judge and Gill Botten an EA Level A Judge and videoed by Sara Botten. During Morning Tea which followed the Test Riding, each rider met with the two Judges and Elaine Greene, who was assisting with the coaching, to discuss their videoed tests and receive suggestions on how marks could be improved.
Lunch followed for the riders, their helpers and the Judges and Coaches. During lunch Gill Botten spoke on how riders could develop and record a Training Plan for their horses and Suzin Wells, one of our PE Riders and the proprietor of FIRST BIT EQUINE, spoke on bit fitting and the importance of having the correct bit.
This was followed by general discussion and in particular the COMPETITIVE EDGE programme. Some riders reported that they were not receiving notification of up-coming ZOOM meetings. This has been followed up and hopefully resolved.
The afternoon was devoted to riders being coached by Gill and Elaine and working on suggestions from the judges in their Video discussions and particular movements of the riders’ choice.
The riders also had a visit from Jilly Hancock from Heiniger Equine. Heiniger sponsors our Para Equestrians with their Heiniger Equine products and Jilly was able to give them their Heiniger Jackets and Caps. Which look extremely smart.
The day concluded at 4.45pm with riders, Judges and Coaches unanimously voting it successful, satisfying and a great idea to be able to get together and talk to each other.
Some comments from the riders –
“I am really grateful for the day and had an excellent lesson with Gill Botten – I would really like to learn more from her.”
“Fantastic Day, well organised.”
“I could not have asked for a better day and outcome. It was an amazing day.”
“I had a fantastic day and learnt so much. Loved watching my test back on the big screen with the amazing judges Lisa Baker and Gill Botten and really enjoyed my lesson with Gill. Great to catch up with fellow Para Equestrians.”
My thanks to the whole Team – Lisa, Gill, Elaine and Sara and Nerissa and her Team at the SEC.