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Six wild Walers to showcase Australian breed

Australian light horsemen riding waler horses. The soldiers are of the original contingent of the Australian Imperial Force and the photo was taken prior to their departure from Australia in November 1914. The soldier on the right is Trooper William Harry Rankin Woods, 1st Light Horse Regiment, who died of wounds on 15 May 1915, one of the first light horsemen to die during the Battle of Gallipoli."

Australian light horsemen riding waler horses. The soldiers are of the original contingent of the Australian Imperial Force and the photo was taken before their departure from Australia in November 1914. The soldier on the right is Trooper William Harry Rankin Woods, 1st Light Horse Regiment, who died of wounds on 15 May 1915, one of the first light horsemen to die during the Battle of Gallipoli.

The legendary versatility of Australia’s Waler horses will be on show at next year’s Equitana expo.

Six horses have been pulled from the wilds of central Australia and each has been given to a different trainer to be educated.

The horses will appear at Equitana in November, 2013, to show just how far they have come, and highlight the intrinsic value of the wild Walers if people are prepared to put in the effort to train them.

Equitana has partnered with the Waler Horse Society of Australia for the venture, and also has the backing of Mitavite and Diamond Boots Australia.

The Waler horse has a prestigious history and stories of their bravery and the numerous times these amazing equines saved their rider’s lives have been documented in many publications.

Today, Walers run free in Central Australia. They are rounded up on a regular basis and sent for processing as pet food.

When their plight was brought to the attention of Equitana Australia, organisers contacted the Waler Horse Society with an idea.

Elizabeth Jennings, from the society, saw how working with Equitana could create a lot of awareness and hopefully encourage people to look at the Waler as a potential riding partner.

The project will see six wild Walers housed with trainers of very different disciplines for 12 months.

Michelle O'Neill and Digger.

Michelle O’Neill and Digger.

The trainers and their Walers will then come to Equitana in Sydney in 2013 to showcase just how far they have come in one year.

Finding the horses and getting them out of their wild habitat was not an easy task.

Equitana sent Sandi Simons, Jennings and a film crew to meet Don Childs, the man responsible for capturing and bringing the wild Walers out from the remote cattle stations on which they live.

After choosing the best six types for the purpose, the Walers were all delivered safely to their assigned trainers.

The trainers taking part in the project are:

  • CHRISTY CONNOR from CC’s Equine Training in Taralga, New South Wales. Sheis going to train BILL in trick riding.
  • DAVID SIMONS from David Simons Training in Drysdale, Victoria. He will train GUNNER as a reining horse.
  • ANNIE KESTERTON from Jindivick, Victoria. She will educate CORONATION to be a dressage horse.
  • DAMIAN JUDD from Moore Creek, New South Wales. He has RUPERT to train up as a Show Horse.
  • MICHELLE O’NEILL from Cherry Tree Equine in Cooma, New South wales. She will train DIGGER as a barrel racing horse.
  • WAYNE ARMSTRONG from Team of Four in Bambra, Victoria. He will present Trooper as a carriage horse.

 

The progress of the horses can be followed at www.equitana.com.au.

 

 

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