The Field of Dreams - Calling All Thoroughbreds to Stonewall!

Tara Madgwick - Monday January 24

The picturesque Stonewall Equestrian Centre at Mangrove Mountain hosted the Inglis sponsored TSHA jumping show on the weekend and when we arrived my daughter Jasmine was quick to remark, “I’ve never seen so many ridden thoroughbreds in the one place that is not a racetrack!”

The evolution of the Thoroughbred Sport Horse Association has been a privilege to be involved with and the staging of this latest round of classes at Krissy and Heath Harris’s purpose built equestrian facility, designed and built by horse people for horse people, takes this facet of the sport to a new level.

Taking any horse to a show requires a certain level of commitment and as anybody who pursues equestrian knows all too well, not all showgrounds and venues are created equal.

Stonewall Equestrian is the 'Field of Dreams'!

Stonewall ticks every box to make it an enjoyable venue for horses and their riders, so for anybody that has every considered chasing the TSHA dream and stepping into the jumping arena with their off the track thoroughbred, this place truly is the field of dreams!

And so to the classes on Sunday four wonderful AM5 events (clear round and jump off) over heights of 90cm (Slipper), 1m (Group 3), 1.10m (Group 2) and 1.20 (Group I) all sponsored by Inglis to the tune of nearly $3,000 in cash plus stunning rugs for the winners.

With over 90 entries there was a real mix of up and coming young thoroughbreds learning the ropes, older veterans enjoying the outing and some seasoned campaigners trained to the minute.

Bridie Sparkes was front and centre to watch Strawberry Hill Stud’s Moon Landing ridden by Nikita Moore compete and the unraced five year-old son of More Than Ready (USA) did not disappoint.

Injured as a foal, the three-quarter brother-in-blood to leading Queensland sire Better Than Ready showed loads of potential with a big powerful scopey jump and while he didn’t place on this occasion will be one to follow out of the show.

Slipper Class

Terrific class with 32 starters and 10 going clear to make for an exciting jump off with Jasmine Haynes winning on Kiwi bred Pins gelding Daybreak Del Pietro aka Piazza San Pietro.



Jas Haynes on Daybreak Del Pietro!

Jasmine has left us at Daybreak Farm to take up a job with Chris Waller Racing strapping and riding work, but given Sunday was her day off I saw an opportunity for her to have a bit of fun away from the track and give Pie a whirl around.

Her brother Jack and I have kept Pie up to the mark and Jasmine gave him a great ride to score a thrilling win with less than half a second between first and second.

Pie came to us straight off the track from the late Bede Murray when Jasmine was 12 and he’s been a part of our team ever since ridden by all of us and at age 14 he’s the gift that keeps on giving!

Group 3

Another super competitive class with 37 starters and 11 clears with Charly Robinson-Smith taking the win on her bonny mare Pure Obsession (Denon (USA), who is also 14 and has a swag of wins behind her.

Charly Robinson-Smith is interviewed by Caroline Searcy at the Inglis media wall!

Pure Obsession took Charly up through the jumping ranks and she now regularly competes in the big open junior classes at major shows on other members of her team, while this little mare known at home as Portia is always hard to beat in the TSHA classes!

Group 1 and 2

The Group I and 2 classes were both won by Cooma visitor John Flower, who is one of the most successful amateur showjumpers in the south of the state and a regular at South Coast ag shows where he is invariably in the mix.

John Flower and Major Look were on fire at Stonewall!

While Jeff Penza and his wonderful jumper Fireball (Bite the Bullet (USA) were entitled to be the favourites for these classes on paper, they had no answer to John Flower’s 10 year-old Shaft gelding Major Look.

Major Look was unnamed as a racehorse, so never raced or trialled and when John got him he thought he was a cute little horse with a sweet nature that might make a nice hack.

He took him to his local jump club for an outing and the rest is history! Major Look loves jumping and has now won or placed at most of the major jumping shows including the NSW State Titles.

Caroline Searcy’s Thoroughbreds are Go will have a feature on this Stonewall TSHA show when it returns in 2022 with sponsors now being sought to for this great show bringing the stories and achievements of off the track thoroughbreds to our screens.



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