Mt Gambier
Friday, 1st March 2013

Sponsored by ~
Training Ship Gambier


The Navy Cadets came out in force on Friday evening for the running of the inaugural Navy Cadets Harness Pony Cup Race which will become an annual event in the future.

With 2 pony races on the card the cadets paraded in uniform in front of the crowd to award trophies & a pony rug to the fortunate winners.

Also on the night was a free Pony Cup sweep for the children with goods donated by Toffee & Treats of Penola & an admission voucher for a family to the Penola Fantasy Model Railway & Rose’s Tea Rooms which was won by a delighted Kimberly Opperman.


Race 1: Navy Cadets Disc. Handicap

All 8 ponies set off at the sound of the whistle with front runner, Run Jemma Run and Jacob Opperman, taking the lead at a steady pace by 80m to Willow (Abbey Gull) who was approaching quickly from behind.

Further back Zena (Jhett Perry) and Blaze (Stacey Barker) were running side by side, both ponies fighting to dominate the other, while Pablo (Emma Shepherd) was powering forward to catch them at the turn.

Jackim (Joshua Micallef) maintained his ground to the home straight chasing the front-runners with determined effort as Pablo & Minty (Matthew Shepherd) in a burst of speed passed him in the run to the line.

Backmarker Pumpkin (Emma Greenfield) struggled to make ground to the home straight where she found some energy to catch the main group of runners but left her run too late.

In the closing stages of the race it was an impressive Pablo who dominated the field with a superb drive by Emma Shepherd who drove her pony over the line 12m ahead of the 2nd placed Minty. Following on were Zena, Blaze, Jackim, Pumpkin, Willow & Run Jemma Run.


Pablo and Emma Shepherd



Race 2: Mt Gambier Navy Cadets Pony Cup

The Pony Cup race was set up by the handicapper as a marathon event with ponies spread out from the 480m mark to the 800m mark. The added excitement of a longer event was felt by both the competitors & the crowd, with children & families cheering on the ponies that had been drawn for them in the pony sweep.

With nerves running high the bigger ponies raced around the first turn, Minty looking strong & advancing quickly to Pablo (Jessica Shepherd) & Jackim (Jacob Opperman).

Backmarker Pumpkin gathered momentum from behind & lessened the gap with each stride but had what seemed to be an impossible task ahead.

Midfield, Zena & Blaze fought for position with Zena pulling away in the chase to catch Run Jemma Run (Joshua Micallef) who was finding the marathon too challenging.

As they entered the home straight out in front by the best part of 30m was Willow with the main field battling for position behind.

Blistering home down the straight in an amazing effort, Pumpkin flew down the outside of the track and stole the lead from Willow 20m from the line. Emma Greenfield was all smiles as she & her pony took out their second win for the season ahead of an unlucky Willow & a fast finishing Minty. They were followed by Zena, Blaze, Pablo, Jackim & Run Jemma Run.


Pumpkin and Emma Greenfield at presentation after winning the Mt Gambier Navy Cadets Pony Cup

~Future Events~

Pony racing returns on Sunday 17th March with the running of the Naracoorte Cup sponsored by the Scholefield Racing Stables.

With only 2 more meetings before the South Australian Pony Harness Racing Championships at Globe Derby & the completion of the season all the drivers are fiercely fighting for Pony of the Year points which will be decided on our final night of racing.


x - Absent from Meeting
r - Did Not Finish Event