Sponsored by Horseland
PCAT WEB SITE – www.pcat.org.au
PCA WEB SITE – www.ponyclubaustralia.com.au.
We live horses too!
Editor – Ann Graves, agraves@tassie.net.au
President: Judy Pitt – jlpitt@bigpond.com
Secretary: Jill Viney – jviney@activ8.net.au
What a year it has been! EI has wrecked havoc with many horse people’s lives, not to mention our PC members.
Emails have been flying around the airwaves – I had 93 relating to it in my inbox! – but hopefully things are getting
more or less back to normal now with a lot of the protocols eased. However, remember whenever you take your
horse out in public you must fill in, and hand in at the gate, one of those tracing forms. This is just in case we have
an outbreak, then it will be easy to trace a horse’s movements.
Rallies, events and shows have been cancelled, so opportunities have been lost for members to qualify. Because of
this, the PCAT has decided that the Dressage and Jumping Champs will revert to their previous time slot so will
be held on the 12th & 13th April, 2008, to give riders more time to qualify. These will be held at the Burnie Show
grounds. Watch the PCAT website for more news on these.
The new qualifying time slot therefore, is from the last champs to these, and not back to the 1/1/07 as was
originally stated with the proposed change to January. It is for this year only and it is planned they will be held in
January next year. If members have a real difficulty in qualifying due to the cancellation of events they should
communicate with their DC, who will advise whether they should apply for an exemption, but they should make
every effort to attend the events scheduled in the next four months. Dismounted rallies count for rider
qualifications, but not for the horses, of course, and riders remember that you do have to have at least one round at
a show or gymkhana to qualify for the jumping champs and 55% for two dressage tests.
PCAT STATE TRIALS 2008 will be at Huntingfield over the March Long weekend. A different time table is being
tried this year, with the dressage on Sat., XC on Sunday followed by the dinner that evening. The Jumping will
take place on Monday morning, allowing riders the afternoon in which to travel home.
We are sorry to be losing two of our long time executive officials this year. Beatrice Hayne has retired as the
Treasurer and Insurance officer after nine years in the position. We thank her most sincerely for her untiring work
on our behalf and wish her well in her retirement. She is being replaced by Sue deKaste from Burnie.
Carol Hobson is also retiring as the Chief Instructor state representative, but is continuing as a NZ CI. Carol has
also worked untiringly for the state and we thank her for her efforts. She has indicated that she wishes to take a
lower profile in PC, but we hope that we will not be losing too many of her services.
Have you looked at our new web site lately? You really should visit it once a week at least to make sure that you
are not missing out on any important news. Anything that is urgent will be posted on the Home (opening) page.
The calendar at the bottom of this page mostly has details of the listings attached, so just click on it to get these up.
I will continue to circulate to the clubs my little single page of dates so you have a quick reference as to what is on
in each zone, when but it has no contact details etc. Please let Judy and me know of any new fixtures or changes of
dates. I know there have been many of these this year due to all the EI cancellations.
Judy Pitt is busy getting it up and running through the BelleVue system, though the EI outbreak has held her up due
to all the time taken in sending correspondence about it. Now that is easing she hopes to get back to getting all the
details in. Every club has now been allocated their own site so she urges clubs to look at their site and familiarise
themselves with it, then develop and manage it as they wish.
Each club received a notice of the service from Judy back in October. Clubs are also urged to put up all their
members details etc, and their own calendar of events which will automatically be transferred to the state calendar.
A book has been compiled to assist clubs with the system and Judy has offered to go to each zone to help them set
it up and give advice on how the system works, so if you would like her to visit you please let her know.
Once all is entered, the PCAT will be able to contact every member by the click of a mouse button with urgent
news that might affect them, or of specific groups, such as the games squad. It will make communications between
the state body, clubs and members a lot quicker and easier when everyone is on board.
When all is up and running she will also be our new web maid.
In fact she is a real glutton for punishment because she has put her hand up to be the new PCA minute secretary!
We wish her luck with her application. Judy’s annual report is available on the web site. Read it.
I have just explored the website and found some very useful information in a segment under the Articles drop down
menu – PCAV Fact Sheets. These could be very useful for our upcoming test candidates, especially.
PCAT Newsletter 44
December 2007
There is a lot coming on under the Games banner.
New Zealand has invited a team to go to Hawkes Bay for a competition on 5th April, 2008. Tasmania can have
one rider, who must be under 21 on 5th April, 2008. There is no funding at this stage as it is an unofficial event.
Riders will fly into Hastings on Wed. 2nd April and return on Mon. 7th April.
NZ is taking no chances of EI getting in to their country, so has insisted that riders must be isolated from contact
with any horses for 76 hours before. They also will provide them with a new Helmet and boots for the competition.
International Prince Philip Mounted Games
Under the new format, riders have to attend a National selection camp which will be held in Katherine, Northern
Territory from 12th -13th April. Each state is allowed to send two riders to it, who must be under 16 on 1st Jan 08,
and the best five will be selected to go to the IPPMG.
Though this is only a selection camp, and not a competition, the state has agreed to pay $200 towards their
expenses – the flight to Darwin, then get to Katherine, and return of course. Riders and selectors will be hosted by
PCNT and if a night’s accommodations is necessary because of biosecurity reasons, PCA will pay. I do not know
how you get, or who pays for the transport from Darwin to Katherine. Check the website later.
It will be quite an expensive exercise, and even more so if you are selected to represent the country in the IPPMG,
as this is only the start of it! However, the next IPPMG are being held in WA, not abroad, from 11th-26th July 2008
– school time for us!
The PCAT is not in favour of this way of selection, as it seems it will become a trip for those that can afford it, and
not necessarily the best, but we were out voted. The new format came about because, the bigger states, NSW in
particular, think it is unfair that Tassie with only 1,000 members should have equal opportunities as they do with
Nominations to be in to the state secretary by 30th December, 2007 – for riders for both of these teams on form
11.6.2, which must be accompanied by 11.6.7. We are also looking for a Selector/chaperone for this trip which
will be fully funded. Nominations on form 11.6.6.
Selection of our riders for both will be sometime in Jan or Feb, to be decided after liaison with selectors. Watch the
calendar for the date, but nominees will be informed. Remember, ambassadorial skills are important too.
PCA is seeking expressions of interest for the positions of Coaches and Managers/Chaperones for both the NZ
team, at their own expense, and for the IMPPG in WA. These positions for Perth will receive the usual subsides of
accommodation, insurance and their share of the $5,000 which is allocated by PCA to this team which should cover
the air fare cost. If you are interested, the PCA Nomination form, Selection Criteria and Guidelines of duties, have
been sent around or are available from the secretary and need to be into her by 31st December, 2007
National Prince Philip Mounted Games Both the Junior & Senior will be held at Gawler in SA from 1st-2nd
November, 2008. It will include the selection of riders to compete in the following Trans Tasman Games in April
2009. Selection for the State team will be on Sat. 31st May 2008 at the Deloraine Show Ground.
Nominations on forms as above close with the state secretary on 17th May 2008, but before this to the Zone Games
coordinator so they can arrange for a zone selection if necessary. Each zone will announce its own date. Watch the
state calendar on the website.
Barry Harper, who has been appointed the state games coach for the next two years, is visiting all parts of the state
to take coaching clinics. He has already conducted two in the North at which 7 and 10 riders attended which was
very pleasing, and one last weekend in the NW with 7 riders. Unfortunately the southern day had to be cancelled
due to the lack of numbers. That is really disappointing. He is hoping to take a really strong team to the NPPG this
This was conducted, initially at the Exton Indoor School, on 25-26th August by Di Keach, who has accepted the
position of National Coach for two years. It was the most successful clinic yet. The numbers were the best we
have ever had with 50 on Saturday and 43 on Sunday, of which 36 were attended both days.
Di was an inspiration and was extremely popular with the instructors and the riders alike. She explained everything
so clearly, was always willing to answer questions at any time and listen to other people’s points of view. She
clearly demonstrated that one should have a practical reason for doing something, not take what we are told for
granted, so should explain to the children why we tell them to do it this way. In PC in particular we are instructors,
telling the kids how and why we do things, correcting them at the same time. An instructor is slightly different to a
coach – though this has become the in-word – in that the coach is usually more of a one-on-one approach dealing
with an individual’s personal problems, where as in PC we instruct groups, and though we help each individual, we
cannot concentrate on one to the exclusion of the rest of the class for any length of time.
PCAT Newsletter 44
December 2007
After the introduction and initial overview the clinic began with a segment on teaching the very young rider
which was very well received, as this is an area that is often overlooked. She even showed us how we instructors
could help them to get their sluggish woolly ponies a little more responsive to their rider’s wee legs. Then we had
two groups of four riders, the first at D/D star followed by pre-Cs, in which most of the work of the syllabus for
both standards was covered. Jumping was conducted for these two groups in the afternoon.
She made it quite clear that we should not expect too much from the younger riders, but to teach the right thing at
the right time. She particularly emphasised, as I have always expounded, we teach horses by applying our Aids in
the manner of the REs – Request, Remind, Insist, Response, Reward, and Repeat. Do not reward by ceasing your
request until you get some response in the right direction, however slight.
On Saturday evening a few of us had dinner at the Carrick Hotel where Di was happy to discuss various points that
anyone brought up.
Sunday was sent into disarray with the first announcement of Equine Influenza, however it was a very informative
day, even if we could not have our original K and C* riders. The morning began with discussion on these tests,
followed by coaches practising the School figures on foot, then four groups of them presenting scenarios dealing
with safety and risk management. This was an enlightening exercise and I would suggest that all the clubs try this
exercise to see how they would react.
In the afternoon, we moved out to our president’s property where Di instructed Erin (A standard) and Michaela
Van Rooye (B). These riders gave us an excellent opportunity to work with riders at the higher level in Pony Club
and discuss coaching appropriate to these riders. The relevance of the coaching from the previous day was also
emphasized, re-enforcing the importance of a balanced, still rider with soft hands and ‘feel’.
She supplied us with notes which are available for anyone who would like them, and some useful jumping
exercises, not many of which we were able to view in practice due to the cancellation of the Sunday’s riders. I
have copies of all these and her scenario subjects on disk. If anyone wants them, they can email me.
We are hoping she will return on either the 30th-31st Aug or 6th-7th Sep 2008 at the same venue. So everyone, watch
the calendar and keep that weekend free. Clubs, please don’t schedule other things on those dates.
These are a couple of comments I received after it from participants:
NWZ Instructor – The girls really enjoyed the clinic, so did all our zone. I was very happy with Di. She had a
very good approach to both riders and coaches. She made everybody feel important.
Rider’s mother – Thank you so much for the opportunity for Alice to attend the clinic. To be a part of this
wonderful learning experience. She did thoroughly enjoy herself on the day, and she said she got a lot from it.
Alice welcomed all the comments ... most things she is regularly told!! and would love to be involved in helping at
other clinics if needed.
We are also welcoming David Quick who will conduct a Jumping Equitation Clinic on 2nd-3rd August, at the
Westbury Showground. David was one of the original proponents of JE in Australia. He came here to conduct a
couple of clinics in the NW in the early days of JE. He is a highly qualified instructor and received the Victorian
‘Coach of the Year’ (of all sports) award in 2005. The state is hoping that this will explain all aspects of JE and
rekindle some interest in it as well as putting everyone on the right path. All coaches, especially jumping coaches,
are invited to attend. Riders are also invited to participate to improve their and their horse’s jumping. There will
be lots in it for both.
The rider’s position and control are the basis of jumping horses, whether over SJ or XC fences courses, that is why
PC is committed to continuing with this class as part of its Jumping Championships. Pony Club has been where
most of our Olympic and International riders started their riding careers, so it is essential that we as an organisation
concentrate on those most important parts.
There is evidence that riders do not really realise that JE is a type of ‘Best rider technique over jumps’ competition,
not a horse one. It is based on the position of the rider over the jumps, with the leg position of most importance as
it gives strength and security to the rider. Just look at the score sheet and see how the marks are awarded. If there
is equality of marks between riders, they are separated by the rider with the higher marks for the first item on the
sheet – Legs. If still equal, then the second – Eye Contact, and so on. You will see that the first five are all relating
to the rider. Those awarded to the horse are all rider related, i.e. they reflect the rider’s ability to train and control
Again this has been a great result for clubs and the association with each receiving over $3,000.
Results are as follows, each receiving a Horseland Gift Voucher:
1st Jodie Gardam , Burnie, 2nd Angie Clark, Riverside, 3rd Frances Kube, Hobart, 4th Sue deKaste, Stowport, 5th
Sandra Pitt, Hamilon, 6th Debbie Thompson, Powranna. Book sellers prize – Tanya Bowman, Tas.
We do thank Horseland for their ongoing support of our organisation, and hope that when you purchase items you
tell them you are a member of the Pony Club.
PCAT Newsletter 44
December 2007
SAFETY ISSUES – Peacock irons
It was stated during Di Keach’s clinic that the rubber band should be on the outside. In fact one coach said the
manufacturers recommended it be that way. As a strong advocate of having them on the inside for safety reasons, I
contacted the distributors, Zilco, who informed me that neither the manufacturers nor they make any
recommendations regarding which way they are put on the saddle. Our state ruling states it is optional, because of
the safety concern.
I have used Peacock Irons for the last 70 years and have always ridden with the rubber band on the inside, because
that is the way I was taught at the age of 4. Many years ago now I heard of a very bad accident to a friend of mine
when the rings were on the outside which tells me they no longer safety stirrups in all senses of the word. In fact, it
can cause extra dangers to those of an ordinary solid-sided stirrup, yet by having them on the inside it does not
compromise the safety issue of releasing the foot in the case of a fall – if the foot twists in the stirrup it will come
off wherever it is placed.
The accident occurred when he was trying to open a gate which was one of those wire mesh covered ones. The
hook caught in it and the horse went berserk. Because it backed off, the stirrup bar never had a chance to release
the leather so the horse panicked and was badly injured, the rider was thrown off suffering a broken leg, not to
mention the gate being wrecked. Ever afterwards that rider used them the other way around, and recommended
that everyone else did so. At the clinic another person told us of someone getting the hook caught in a fence as she
rode alongside it.
These are unnecessary dangers we can well do without so I recommend that anyone using them puts the ring on the
inside, but if you wish to use them on the outside that is up to you. I believe there should be a reason for
everything, but no one can give me a good one for that. Can you? They even look better on the inside!
Worksheets and directions for each of the higher tests are now available. These must be given to all prospective
candidates when they first contemplate taking the test so they know what is required. All CTCOs should have
copies. If not, I have them on disk and can forward via email.
B Test Are clubs making members aware that B test can be taken in two sections now, i.e. Horse Care and Riding?
Though a candidate could previously take the Horsemastership alone, and then follow it up with the Riding later,
none did. There was not a separate certificate for this, but now there is a brown one for Horse Care which can be
taken at an earlier age – 15 yrs – if they have the necessary knowledge and wish to do it then. This might prompt
some to take it in separate years, which splits the work load for them while doing their school exams, as many A
candidates do by taking H first. If they do it separately they must do it in that order – Horse Care then Riding. If
they take the two parts in different years, the paragraph below does not apply.
So, CTOs, please explain all the options to your likely candidates, and make sure that they understand them.
This year, we set and marked the written paper in two sections, so if candidates passed one they did not have to
resit that, but then any extra good marks did not help the member passing the other section if they did not get 65%
for that. Though the CIP agreed to this, it has created some controversy. This will be brought up at the PCA
Instructors meeting for discussion. The CIP members are divided on this and we need to know which way to go so
we really want the members’ opinions to guide us.
There are three options as illustrated in the examples below 1) split into two sections regardless as it was this year,
each of which is adjudicated separately; 2) combined as it was in the past, so they don’t get a credit for one section
only, whichever it is, but if both parts add up to 65% the whole paper is passed, and if it adds to less than 65% they
sit the whole paper again; or 3) members have a choice of applying for one way or the other. This is applicable to
both the paper and the practical segments of the test, and, of course, only if they sit both sections of the test in the
one year. In order to go forward to the practical, they must have passed that segment of the paper, either the
original or the supp.
Here are three different scenarios that could occur for three candidates who sit the whole B paper:
X receives 57% for riding and 65% for HC so passes that but has to sit a supp for riding. If both are combined,
she would have to sit the whole paper again because her overall score is only 61%. If the riding supp is not
passed, X can go forward to the Horse Care part of the practical test, and if that is passed, is able to receive a
brown certificate denoting that. If she passes the Riding supp paper she can do both sections of the practical.
Y gets 62% for Riding and 70% for HC, so has to do the same supp as X but had they been combined would
pass the paper, so not have any supp to do. This is what used to happen before B was divided.
Z, on the other hand, passes the riding section of her paper, but not the HC. The syllabus says that the HC must
be gained before the Riding. She would not be able to do her Riding practical test this time unless she passes the
HC supp, but the Riding paper would be held in credit. If the HC supp is failed, she would only have to take the
HC paper again the following year.
PCAT Newsletter 44
December 2007
Paper Dates
The dates that written papers were done was changed this year to September, with the idea of making them closer
to the practical test, but does this really matter? Some of the examiners found it very difficult to get the marking
and return of the papers back to the candidates in time to give them much time to revise before sitting the supp.
There is only 10 weeks between the two. It sounds plenty, but in reality, we only got the B papers back to the
candidates three weeks before the supps were due. Though they did know the overall result a lot sooner they did
not know the specific questions they had failed.
Examiner do this on a voluntary basis so have to fit it in with their usual work. As two examiners have to mark
them it does not take long if the answers are good, but when they are not so good, more time is needed.
It has been suggested that we go back to the previous date, then if there is a hold up with the marking, as has
happened in the past, the candidates get plenty of time for revision. Please let the CIP know what you think?
Email to all of them so we all get your thoughts.
I have a number of notes and booklets on disk from past National Instructor clinics that we have had in the state
that I could distribute to anyone that would like them, including all Di Keach’s from the latest clinic. “Feeding the
Riding Horse” by Zoë Harrison is one that could be of great help to the higher test candidates. It contains the
properties of many regular feeds that are not available in other publications.
One of the biggest issues highlighted at the recent PCA meeting was the fact that older riders do not like the name
‘Pony Club’. The same issue was discussed at the International meeting so it seems to be universal. What do you
riders think? Perhaps Pony and Riding Club would be appropriate. It would be a shame to lose the Pony out of it
as it has been in existence for over 80 years now and is basically a world-wide youth organisation. Let us have
your opinions.
Congratulations to Mandy Loone on receiving this award. Mandy has been a very long time member of the Mersey
Valley Pony Club and stayed as a member after turning 21. She was the only nomination this year.
As well as changes to the state officers which were decided at the AGM, there are a few others to the last office
bearer’s list. These are highlighted in yellow, so if you have printed it out, make sure that you change these. It has
been suggested that we include mobile numbers in stead of fax numbers, so if you would like yours included,
please let me know.
It has been agreed to allow Financial Adult riders to ride at PC competitions (not championships) at the discretion
of each PC organising committee. In the case of ODEs, they may ride in grades 4& 5 only as a separate class.
Section 9 Games rules changes effective 1st August 2007
1. page 9.2 (revised November 2005 August 2007, supersedes and overrules any prior rules or memoranda
2. page 9.4, after e) Equipment stewards ADD to check that the equipment in their lane is correct and in
place for each game
3. page 9.6, para 2 will now read “ the 4 hoofs of the next riders pony must be behind the line until….
4. same para The incoming rider ONLY (and leading his pony if dismounted) can……
5. page 9.6 para 3. Under the line about Pony Club Race ADD “Canadian Race: the rider must be mounted
when hitting the ball with the hockey stick” ALSO add to the end of directions for Canadian Race on page
9.9 “The rider must be mounted when hitting the ball with the hockey stick”
6. Page 9.18, Pyramid race. ADD after “will be placed four plastic cartons” “lid upwards” and under
directions after “….with all four cartons stacked one on top of the other ADD, “ lid upwards”
7. Page 9.20, Sack race whose No 4 is the first across the finish line, on his feet only, with both feet in the
sack and leading his pony
8. Page 9.4, Judges duties c) conducting a briefing of coaches before the start of the competition to clear up
any potential rule interpretations. d) becomes briefing and supervising the line stewards
Delete ‘with PCAT amendment to the speed’ after the reference to the corresponding EFA
standard in Grades 1 & 2.
Grade 1: (EFA Pre Novice standard with PCAT amendment to the speed)
Grade 2: (EFA Preliminary standard with PCAT amendment to the speed)
PCAT Newsletter 44
December 2007
Handbook amendment to page 0.7
Add an s to Midlands Pony Club Inc.
Here is an amusing piece that I copied from somewhere.
They now have a name for the disease, more serious than bird flu. Living with O.C.E.A.N. Syndrome
Just recently, after years of research, I have finally been able to give a name to what I have been living with for
years. It's an affliction, for sure, which when undiagnosed and misunderstood can devastate and literally tear a
family apart. Very little is known about O.C.E.A.N. Syndrome. But it is my hope this article will generate interest
from researchers involved in the equine and psychological sciences. You will, no doubt, begin to identify similar
symptoms in your own family and hopefully now be able to cope.
Obsessive Compulsive Equine Attachment Neurosis Syndrome (O.C.E.A.N.S) is usually found in the female and
can manifest itself anytime from birth to the golden years. Symptoms may appear any time and may even go
dormant in the late teens, but the syndrome frequently re-emerges in later years. Symptoms vary widely in both
number and degree of severity.
Allow me to share some examples which are most prominent in your home.
The afflicted individual:
1. Can smell mouldy hay at ten paces, but can't tell whether milk has gone bad until it turns chunky.
2. Finds the occasional Buck and Toot session hugely entertaining, but severely chastises her husband for similar
3. Will spend hours cleaning and conditioning her tack, but wants to eat on paper plates so there are no dishes.
4. Considers equine sweat a fragrance.
5. Enjoys mucking out four stalls twice a day, but insists on having a housekeeper mop the kitchen floor once a
6. Will spend an hour combing and trimming an equine mane, but wears a baseball cap so she doesn't waste time
brushing her own hair.
7. Will dig through manure piles daily looking for worms, but does not fish.
8. By memory can mix eight different supplements in the correct proportions, but can't make macaroni and cheese
that isn't soupy.
9. Twice a week will spend an hour scrubbing algae from the water tanks, but has a problem cleaning lasagne out
of the casserole dish.
10. Will pick a horse's nose, and call it cleaning, but becomes verbally violent when her husband picks his.
11. Can sit through a four-hour session of a ground work clinic, but unable to make it through a half-hour episode
of Oprah.
The spouse of an afflicted victim:
1. Must come to terms with the fact there is no cure, and only slightly effective treatments. The syndrome may be
genetic or caused by the inhaling of manure particles which, I propose, have an adverse effect on female
2. Must adjust the family budget to include equine items - hay, veterinarian services, farrier services, riding boots
and clothes, supplements, tack, equine masseuse and acupuncturist - as well as the (mandatory) equine spiritual
guide, etc. Once you have identified a monthly figure, never look at it again. Doing so will cause tightness in
your chest, nausea and occasional diarrhoea.
3. Must realize that your spouse has no control over this affliction. More often than not, she will deny a problem
even exists. Denial is common.
4. Must form a support group. You need to know you're not alone – and there's no shame in admitting your wife
has a problem. My support group, for instance, involves men who truly enjoy Harley Davidson's, four-day
weekends and lots of scotch. Most times, she is unaware that I am even gone, until the precise moment she
needs help getting a 50-pound bag of grain out of the truck.
Now you can better see how O.C.E.A.N.S. affects countless households in this country and abroad. It knows no
racial, ethnic or religious boundaries.
It is a syndrome that will be difficult to treat because those most affected are in denial and therefore, not interested
in a cure.
PCAT Newsletter 44
December 2007