Having just returned home from being a part of my 13th EV State Interschool Championships, it was occurred to me that the riders attending their final State Championships would have been in Prep 13 years ago. I have loved watching the transition from cute happy smiles with little plaits and bows to mature and very capable riders who now amaze me with their ability.
Last week saw over 650 riders and their families camping at WPNEC and the weather was on our side for all but a couple of hours. Next year we will move it back to the Easter holidays and will also include a horse trials at the end of the week, making it a massive week of competition for young riders of all ages and disciplines. Thank you to Lisa Hocking for running yet another fantastic event. Lisa very capably over saw the 2014 State and National Interschool Events which were so successful that other states wondered if she could cross the borders for theirs.
This year has seen the running of many wonderful EV hosted events and the Board and I would like to thank the very dedicated event directors and their hard working teams for the huge amount of time and effort which has gone into these events. We salute the amazing volunteers who are the backbone of not only Equestrian Victoria but also all sport in Australia. Without you all we could not run our events .
We have arrived at the end of the financial year, and it seems like yesterday but in fact it was January that the new Board spent a day developing a strategic plan for Equestrian Victoria. The number one priority was Financial Security, an area which I am sure needs no introduction. Mark Reid spent many long hours over many weeks starting the overhaul of the finances and procedures; unfortunately for us his amazing talent was recognised at his day job and he received an offer he couldn't refuse by way of promotion. Mark had to step down from the EV Board due to his new job commitments. His role has been recently taken up by Mark Griffiths who is in the final stages of preparation of the budgets in consultation with the discipline chairs, CEO Greg Pratt and Sarah our new bookkeeper. We are currently seeking people with experience to help us on a financial Sub-Committee. This Committee
would work with Mark to ensure our financial goals are achieved from which every member will benefit .
Janet Houghton has overseen the resurrection of the EV newsletter albeit with the twist of it now being on line. Janet needs no introduction to the eventing Community as besides being the mover and shaker behind the highly successful Eventing squads she has just overseen the Melbourne International 3 Day Event, now back under EV's direct control after a year in private enterprise.
The winter also sees the resumption of Young Rider Jumping Squads under the experienced guidance of Paul Williams and Annie White. Mitch Fox and his Show Committee have introduced the Amateur Show and Show Horse Clinics .Young Rider Dressage Squad had their launch last week. The recent training day of the top ten Young Riders from each discipline was a tribute to the past winners who ran the day.
Entry level participation and youth development across all disciplines is something which is dear to my heart and we are working towards progressing this. The change to the horse registration for eventing and jumping horses is an example of this. Michael Bragge the Chair of Dressage has explored many options and Dressage will promote the Amateur Owner Rider for which EV provide the ribbons and Dolly Joyce has organised the sponsorship and will also run the leader board. Don't forget to tick the AOR box on your dressage entry forms.
David Shavin has spent many hours away from his 'day job' steering us down the correct legal path and along with Derek Oleary has been a great sounding board. Both David and Derek contribute enormous hours to the many varied areas behind the scenes and we have benefitted greatly from their sage advice. We have also significantly advanced the communication between the other States and also the Equestrian Australia Board.
The Lease negotiations for WPNEC has been steady however there has been some changes recently at Parks and as a result we are having more frequent beneficial meetings.
I would like to thank all the members of the Board for their enormous dedication and commitment to the successful operation of Equestrian Victoria.
We are asking members to think about the people in their discipline that have contributed to our wonderful sport - be they administrators, volunteers, Officials, athletes or pioneers and nominate them for an award. These people make our sport happen and deserve all accolades and recognition. To nominate click here
The winners will be announced at the Awards Night on August 1. You can purchase tickets Here
I look forward to seeing you there.
Cheers from Ingrid