SAFETY FIRST: Technical delegates Carl Parkin and Paula Barlow inspect the Bank Drop Jump prior to this weekend's three-star competition at Morgan Park.
SAFETY FIRST: Technical delegates Carl Parkin and Paula Barlow inspect the Bank Drop Jump prior to this weekend's three-star competition at Morgan Park. Gerard Walsh

Safety and fun at top of wish list for eventing weekend

EVENTING: Safety and fun are the buzz words for technical delegate Carl Parkin who was at Morgan Park yesterday to walk the course for this weekend's DRB Floats Warwick International Three Star event being put on by the Warwick Horse Trials Club.

There are 220 nominations across all classes.

Parkin is the president of Equestrian Victoria and hails from Whittlesea after originally competing in his home country England.

He was inspecting and measuring the cross country course along with Yeppoon official Paula Barlow.

They are two of the four technical delegates who will be in Warwick this weekend.

"We need to make sure the event is safe, fun and within the rules,” he said.

"There are challenging jumps for two-star horses and even more challenging jumps for the third-star horses.

"Every course is different and this one is in bushland, Morgan Park is a super cross country course.

"It is an international event so the course will be designed and built to the same standard anywhere in the world.”

With southeast Queensland eyeing off a possible Olympic bid in 2032, Parkin said Morgan Park could be used for a World Cup qualifier or for events in the lead-up to an Olympics being held in Queensland.

"Events in Warwick could be used as qualifiers for the Adelaide International, one of only seven five-star events in the world,” he said.

"The Olympics is not necessarily harder than the seven five-star events.”

Barlow was introduced to the sport when three daughters became involved in eventing.

"One of my daughters competed at the Adelaide International,” Barlow said.

"As is the case in many horse sports, there are more women taking up the sport than men,” Barlow said.

"There are a lot of riders from the outskirts of the capital cities.”

Barlow said the cross country course had been aerated to soften the surface.

"The aerating has done a good job in the dry weather,” she said.

"I am hoping for some rain at Morgan Park before the weekend.

"The main thing is there is water to cool down the horses after they finish the cross country.”

One of the regular riders in Warwick is 2004 Olympian Rebel Morrow but she has not nominated for this weekend.

Madison Simpson and her horse Adloo Galina will start favourite in the three-star.

Dressage action will start at 8am Saturday and the cross country at 8am Sunday.

High class showjumping will be Saturday with the lower classes competing on Sunday.

Warwick Horse Trials Club president Tracey Sexton said at least 50 volunteers would help run the event.

Spectator entry is free and there is grandstand seating on the edge of the dressage and showjumping arenas.

Grandstands are also on the cross-country course with the most seating at the water jump near the work shed at the Warwick Horse Trials facility.



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