State School Hosts Dressage Competition

29 Apr 2013

There can’t be many state comprehensive schools that host dressage competitions for the British Horse Society, the foremost equestrian organisation in the UK, but that’s just what happened last weekend at the Royal Alexandra and Albert School.

Competitors came from around Surrey to demonstrate their riding skills. There were three classes, the ‘Walk and Trot’, the ‘Prelim’ and the ‘Novice’ with a total of 37 competitors entered, and 10 of these coming from the School itself.

The ‘Walk and Trot’ class was won by Royal Alexandra and Albert School pupil, Ceandice Davison (17) riding Jammie Dodger, the ‘Prelim’ class was won by Romi Cospantini on Shamrock and the ‘Novice’ class was won by Julie Hawkins on Foggy. Rosettes were awarded to other RAAS pupils; Frida Magnussen (16) and Ella Davis (14) were placed 5th and 6th in the ‘Walk and Trot’ class. The School’s Stable Apprentice, Tarryn Poole, came second in the ‘Prelim’ class.

Jammie Dodger, the horse ridden by Ceandice Davison, is one of the horses recently acquired by the school. He came from Rapykyns Irish Horses which is based in West Sussex and is one of many that Rapkyns have supplied to the school.

Stables Manager, Irini Economou said “This competition has given our pupils, and other children from Surrey, the opportunity to practice their riding skills. They now have a better understanding of what is required when competing and can relate this to the skills they have learned in their riding lessons. Staff and pupils have worked hard to prepare the horses, riding school and themselves, for this important event. The newly-built stables and outdoor riding school have really come into their own and visitors have commented on the excellent facilities that we have here.”

The School will be hosting another dressage event for the British Horse Society on 13th October 2013. The British Horse Society (BHS) organises these events to give riders experience of riding competitively and also to raise funds for its charitable work.

The School completed construction of its new riding stables (based on the American Barn – style) late in 2012. The new stable block includes stables for 20 horses, tack rooms, a changing room for pupils and an office. There is also a new outdoor riding school and both new developments sit alongside the indoor riding school that was built some years earlier.