Sarah & Olive Cronin - The NZ Covid Edition
19TH Jun, 2020
Catch up with Sarah and Olive Cronin, from over the ditch in New Zealand, and find out what they've been up to during Covid.
Sarah tells us:
"Our last show of the season seems like forever ago! We competed at NZ Horse Of The Year in Hastings in March. We were stuck in our very own bubble at HOY, unaware of what was going on around the country. It wasn't till later in the week that we realised the seriousness of things and hurried to pack up and start our long journey back to Methven in the South Island.
It was a great time away and a very successful week, with Olive finishing off her time in Lead rein so perfectly. Unfortunately in our lead rein title class her pony decided to have one of many pit stops and never really got his rhythm back, as little ponies do!!
But she came away with Runner Up lead rein rider of the year and Runner Up paced and mannered lead rein pony of the year, as well as winning the best rider on a welsh pony in a class of 28! So a fun and exciting week all round.
We also purchased a new, 3 year old welsh section B at HOY (he won the Welsh Young Stock POY), so that was pretty neat and we picked him up on our return home just as lock down began.
With the ponies turned out for a few months with no shows in site we decided to make a start on our new welsh purchase Colin - he became our lock down project.
He was so easy to start, taking everything in his stride by ride 3. Olive (age 8) even had a sit on him! He is definitely becoming our very own unicorn, he just loves his work and we can't wait to see Olive out with him next year.
Olive was really disappointed to miss out on the Autumn shows as she was looking forward to getting a few starts in first year ridden before the spring shows, but Covid put a stop to our plans (along with everyone else's!)
We have just dropped to Covid Level 1 in New Zealand, which means everything is back to normal other than our border remaining closed, so all the show planning is underway and we are counting down for September/October when we can get the horses out and about again.
Some of our biggest South Island shows have cancelled for this year as the sponsorship won't be there and they just can't risk running at a loss, so that is hugely disappointing but I think there is talk of some to run on a smaller scale, so we have our fingers crossed.
We have already donated a few garlands back to some local shows to help, and plan on offering some sponsorship to others - anything to give back to a sport that we would be lost without!
We have a few dressage days planned with Colin over the next 2 months to get him some miles before the busy season with HOY in site for 2021 for him, if this goes ahead. It's looking promising, with dates having been set already.
The other ponies have until August off, then it's all systems go - they will be back into work and we're hopefully aiming to qualify 3 to bring to the North Island next time.
We are so lucky at times like these to have our horses and live in the country - no place I'd rather be!"