March, 2006 - Updated 06/04/06
Congratulations to Nellie Evans who made top 5 in her Rider class at the Grand National. Unfortunately Lindy Walker Johnson injured her back and was unable to ride so our Show Hunter entry, Marena Fanfare, had to be scratched.
News of our horses
A recent e-mail from Narelle Knapp:
Well I've been sitting up here in Kingaroy, wishing we could have attended your sale - really thought Sun Folly was lovely, good luck to the people who bought her.
The little mare Marena Amber Breeze that we brought from you almost 10 years ago is such a great little mare who has produced lovely foals. All Amber Breezes foals have won at royal level either ridden or led and now she has her first colt, Y.P. Standing Ovation, who I'm sure will do well too. Breeze's foal she had not long after her Y.P. Sunrise was kept as a brood mare as she was injured and her foal Y.P. Miss Nova will be out this season - looks so much like Marena Starflower, I'll send you a photo , and is so quiet.
Thank you Maureen for selling us Amber Breeze, she is a great little mare and we would never part with her, and have a great retirement.
Wayne & Narelle Knapp
Thank you Jane Hinchley from up north, who sent this note about Marena Brave Dance:
Photo of Brave first show appearance ridden by his new 73 year old owner Jill Kellock near Shepparton Victoria. He's obviously gone to a loving home and caring owner.
Sincerely - Jane Hinchley
The photo on the left is Brave Dance as a 3 yo when he won Champion Gelding at Sydney Royal. The Jakins family of Armidale purchased him as a yearling from us and he was very successful for them, winning many Champions and Supremes over the years for the Jakins girls.
It is great to hear news of our horses and how they give pleasure to their owners over many years.
Congratulations to Jill Kellock (at right) for riding so actively at her age - lucky Brave Dance
Our Show Team set off for Canberra Royal again this year. Gary, Andrea, Nell & Will Evans with their horses Marena Memories and Thompsons Destiny. On our truck was Marena Fanfare, Marena Heartbeat (in her first season of showing and for her first Royal Show), Marena Sweet Kiss - that perennial pony for Ellie Nichols to ride and our newest exhibit, Kath Jones' Warmblood gelding, Apptrak Lord Nelson on his first big outing. The "Team" at the show included Lindy, Maureen, Bruce, Luke & Keeley, Anna Scanlon, Kath Jones, Gittan Ingles, Kristie & Ellie Nichols, Jared Ashbrooke and Nikki Melross. Imagine the logistics involved in simply feeding this crew!
Nelson competed on the first day and thrilled us as his "star quality" shone brightly from ring centre. He was green and a bit bewildered by the "big time" but held fast to win 3rd in the Sport Horse Gelding for his handler, Lindy.
Jared Ashbrooke & Nikki Melross rode in their riding classes. Jared was second in his ridding class but poor Nikki, all dressed up ready to go was caught on the sidelines without a horse as Jared was held in the ring for Reserve Champion and they both ride Fanfare. It was extremely bad luck for Nikki but she took it with a smile and said "Well that's the way things go sometimes."
The star of the show was Marena Fanfare who, with his usual pizzazz and impeccable manners, won Champion Show Hunter Galloway. Fanfare is ridden by all our pupils, faithfully performing for them at whatever level they are able to ride. He is sparklingly white and attractive to the eye with wonderful movement. Fanfare wins in all types of classes but he has not been beaten in Show Hunters classes at an Agricultural show since he started 12 months ago.
Ellie Nichols, the pocket rocket, had her first ride at a Royal Show in the 7 & under 9 years Girls Riding class. It was a big class of 43 and she ended up in the final ten. Well done Ellie!
The Evans family, who have had a fantastic run of success at shows in the last 12 months, took home several placings. Will who finished his HSC last year is enjoying his riding and the shows. He also graduated to the Gentleman Rider class. H had his first attempt at Junior Judging in the ASH competition and came fourth. Nell won third in her riding class.
Nell was Runner-up Rider of the Year in NSW so will soon be competing at the Grand National Championship. Lindy and Marena Fanfare will also be competing there.
Anna Scanlon's mare, Wesswood Seduction (pictured at left) has been sold to Tamara Lee of Victoria. Seduction was placed in every class she contested. Latest news from south of the border is that at her first show for Tamara they won Champion Galloway and Champion Girl Rider.
We all thoroughly enjoyed Canberra Royal, as usual. It has shaped up to be the most competitor friendly Royal in Australia, which is testified to by the increasing numbers of competitors converging on it each year.
Because of the spacious grounds, competitors and horses can stay there together and experience the great feeling of the bygone days - of competitors enjoying each others' company after the day's judging pervades this happy, but very big, Royal Show.
"Thank you" to all the officials for their organisation and willing assistance to competitors.
At Blacktown Show, Kath Jones' Lord Nelson had a very successful time winning Champion Warmblood against a strong turn-up of Warmbloods and was also first in the ANSA Gelding. Kath was over the moon having sold her consistent Warmblood Vashti so that she could devote two years to support her daughter Rochelle towards her HSC. Roie successfully completed her HSC and is off overseas for 12 months in June. Kath is back on the show scene and loving it especially with a youngster that looks like being a superstar.
Kath spent many happy hours in days gone by riding Nelson's mother Ellie who was owned by Suzie Cogar of Apptrak Stud. The two ladies decided to send Elle to Victoria to have two ovum transfers by Falklands Victory. One foal was a filly that Suzie kept and Kath kept the gelding. He has been here at Marena Stud having his preparation for showing and is now stepping out with lots of hopes riding on him.
The Marena team is looking forward to attending Sydney Royal again in 2006. It is the one time of the year when we see most of our horsey friends, enjoy their companionship, and are privileged to feel the throb of heartbeat that is exclusively Sydney Royal. Pictured at right is Vince Corvi and Lindy Walker at the first Sydney Royal held at Homebush Bay in 1999.
Lindy will keep 11 month old Keeley with her at the Show. Bruce and I will look after 2 year old Luke until we leave for overseas on 11th April for a month, then he will join Lindy for the rest of the show.
This will be the first time I have not attended Sydney Royal for 45 years.
We have a marvellous trip planned. We are travelling with Rob and Pauline Fredericks to visit their son, Clayton, who now lives in England. Clayton was a top show competitor both in the west and over here, he attended many Royal Shows with us. Clayton is a Three-day Eventer so we will be attending some trials to watch him, including the Badminton Horse Trials. Clay is releasing a new saddle and we are travelling to Kentucky to a 5 star event in Lexington to promote the saddle. Surely this trip is a horseman's dream!
Clay is pictured at left with Lindy in the Grand Parade, Sydney 1986. Here Lindy is wearing the Champion Lady Rider and Open Turn-out sashes. The next day Clayton won Reserve Champion Gentleman Rider.
Yes, the End of an Era has come for Bruce and I, but a new exciting one is beginning for Lindy Walker Johnson and her children, Luke who will be 3 years in June and Keeley who has her first birthday on 27/4/06.
Lindy will carry on the Marena tradition. We will breed less horses, about 6 per year, and do much less showing until the children are older.
The Marena Riding Academy will run at full operational strength with lessons , both group and private, schools and clinics.
Both Lindy and I will be available to conduct lectures, Clinics and Schools.
Agistment of all categories will still be available.
We will be standing our current Stallions at Stud. Spring 2006 may see the introduction to the public of our Warmblood stallion, Marena Gala Salute.
We are preparing to sell 30 acres of the best land in the Yarramalong Valley as part of our retirement plan. This land, previously used to raise our young horses, is prime agricultural land and situated well above the surrounding land. The property fronts to both the permanent Wyong Creek and Yarramalong Road.
Good luck in the wonderful sport you have chosen.
Quote of the Month
- Watching the Commonwealth Games over the last few days I noted:-
Contact - Maureen, Bruce or Lindy
HB & M Walker
336 Yarramalong Road, Wyong NSW 2259
Phone/Fax: +61 (0)2 4352 1707