A rider competes in the Chase Me Charlie Class at the Sooke Saddle Club Spring Games Show. (Contributed)

Fun and games on horseback

Sooke Saddle Club hosts spring games in Luxton

Sooke Saddle Club hosted its spring games show for English and Western riders on June 8 at the Luxton Arena.

Thirteen horses and 17 driders participated, with the youngest rider two years old.

The big surprise for organizers was the number of adult riders – almost as many adults as kids – and requests for another games show by the adults.

Games included trail class, which prepares horse and rider for obstacles they might encounter when riding fields and trails. Flag race – a timed race teaching the horse to accept a flapping flag which the rider picks up and carries between two buckets. Pole bending-a timed race weaving through six poles. Barrel racing-again a timed event around three barrels.

There were also crazy games like carrying an egg on a spoon and apple juice in a small container, while changing gaits and direction as ordered by the judge. Chase Me Charlie – a jumping competition. Musical standards – a variation of musical chairs where the riders circle jump standards and scoot to the nearest one when the music stops; rider without a standard is out, and one standard is removed each time until last rider remains.

The last game was a bareback class. Riders place a playing card against the horse under their thigh and again follow the judge’s directions. This tests riders’ balance and skill. Riders are eliminated when they lose the card or can’t follow the judge’s orders, until last rider still having the card in place is the winner.

The next event for the Sooke Saddle Club is the Dressage Show and Tell on Saturday, Aug. 17th at the Metchosin Arena.

Contact person for entries is Eila Zylak. She can be reached by email at eilazylak@shaw.ca. Entries and information can also be downloaded from the club’s website at www.sookesaddleclub.org. Members and non-member of the Sooke Saddle Club are welcome, as are spectators.


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