Top showjumpers race to city for state titles
SHOWJUMPING fans will be in awe today when Queensland's best jumpers gather at the Gympie Showgrounds to contest the state title.
With more than $23,000 up for grabs in 15 different events, the 125th annual show is set to be a memorable one.
From miniature ponies to Olympic jumpers, there will be no shortage of action for keen spectators.
Competing in the EFAW State Championships, Morayfield rider Nicky Meredith was practising yesterday ahead of today's competition.
The former Australian Amateur Showjumping champion said she loved her sport and first got on a horse aged just 16 months old.
"I fell in love with horses at a young age and now at 29 I'm still riding," she said.
"Unfortunately I'm not a professional jumper like most of the people here today but I try my best to keep up."
Training every day in anticipation for the event, Meredith said she was excited to compete.
"Gympie has always hosted great competitions, I remember winning my first state title in 1990 at the Gympie Showgrounds," she said.
Competing on Dutch Kellina, Meredith said after the Gympie Show she would travel south to the Caboolture and Maleny shows.
Chief ring steward John Warren said the great courses and attractive prize money would ensure Gympie's reputation as one of the best showjumping grounds in Queensland.
Big name riders competing in Friday's competition will be Gympie's World Cup winner Brett Warren along with Gatton's Clem Smith.
"The event should be as good as you'll see at a show," Mr Warren said.
"It is our show that brings the top riders here."
The action starts today at 8am when the miniature horses take to the ring.