Topics:  horses, murwillumbah showground, tweed valley equestrian group

Dressage champs gallop into town

Supreme Champion Led winner Omaru Comeroso with owner Amanda Bartyn from Dulguigan.
Supreme Champion Led winner Omaru Comeroso with owner Amanda Bartyn from Dulguigan. Contributed

THE Tweed Valley Equestrian Group (TVEG) will hold its official dressage championships this weekend at the Murwillumbah Showgrounds.

"This is the biggest dressage event to be held on the group's calendar for 2012," said spokeswoman for the group Judith Cartwright.

Tweed Equestrian Murwillumbah Saddlery is sponsoring the event.

With $500 in prize money for the Prix St George National Championship Qualifier the event attracts not only local dressage riders but high level riders such as Tor Van den berge, Sally Evans and Sheriden Ashwood.

Prize money and prizes are on offer for all winners and placegetters making the event the largest for the Tweed Valley Equestrian Group.

The event will be held over the two days, this Saturday starting at 8.30am with the Preliminary Test. Novice, Elementary, Medium, Advanced, Pre St George levels will continuing throughout the day.

Mid afternoon will see the freestyle to music and then Inter 2 will commence.

"This is quite a site to see," Ms Cartwright said.

"The horse and rider perform a dressage test to music.

"The music is chosen by the rider and much hard work goes into arranging the routine.

"It also keeps within the movements specified for the test level of dressage ridden.

"The music can range from classical through to rock and roll, with the horses' paces keeping in time with the beat of the music.

"This is always a crowd pleaser with much encouragement for horse and rider."

Sunday will commence at 9am with tests being ridden through until about 3pm.

This year for the first time four arenas will be sand dressed.

Two top level Queensland riders, Connie Bookless and Alexandra Burns are riding at the Grande Prix level.

This is the level ridden at the Olympics.

"To get to this level, both horse and rider would have been preparing for a number of years, always starting out with the lower level tests and working their way through to be able to perform these difficult movements," Ms Cartwright said.

"Dressage, the natural movement of the horse, is the basis for all disciplines of horse riding, including sporting horses, jumping and even some rodeo events."

Tweed Equestrian Murwillumbah will have a trade store operating all weekend with a VIP area including the veranda to view the weekend's dressage event.

TVEG will also have the canteen operating throughout the weekend.

This event is free for all spectators.

For more information see the website tveg.org.au



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