Tony and Shelly Mawhinney and Tracey and Alan Petersen will be at Gunalda’s annual campdraft this weekend.
Tony and Shelly Mawhinney and Tracey and Alan Petersen will be at Gunalda’s annual campdraft this weekend. Renee Pilcher

Riders gear up for campdraft

THE Gunalda and District Campdraft Association is gearing up for its annual campdraft this weekend.

With over 450 entries for seven events, the two-day campdraft is the biggest event on the association's calendar.

Association president Tony Mawhinney said the weekend will kick-off early with a Friday night barbecue, guests asked to donate a gold coin.

The events start early Saturday morning with the Jim Mawhinney Memorial Maiden Campdraft, which will be followed by the junior, juvenile and minidrafts.

Mawhinney said while the campdraft gets a lot of adults involved, the junior, juvenile and minidrafts were good ways of giving kids a chance to be part of the action and learn valuable skills.

"Being a parent myself, I enjoy seeing the little kids getting out there and having fun," he said.

The Jim Paterson Memorial Novice event will be held Saturday afternoon and will be followed by a calcutta and live entertainment on Saturday night.

Another early start Sunday will see the ladies draft, which will be followed by the Ken and Marg Atkinson Memorial Open and the announcement of the fastest run of the weekend.

Mawhinney said the key to success for campdrafters is good stockmanship skills, a good horse/rider combination and all-round ability.

He said the association is hoping for a dry event after last weekend's wet weather, especially considering it was close to postponing the event.

The campdraft will offer a fully-stocked bar and canteen, as well as pancakes, ice cream and snow cones to keep kids of all ages happy.

Mawhinney said support from local businesses and families has been excellent, as has the generosity of local graziers who have supplied around 660 head of cattle for the event.

Events start from 6.30am this Saturday and Sunday at the Gunalda and District Sport and Recreation Grounds, King St.

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