SWDRC’s 2014 Quadrille ‘The Seven Dwarfs’ won the Quadrille qualifier at Bury Farm and are now headed to Olympia for the final in December.
Having only started seriously practicing at the beginning of September the team revisited their formerly unsuccessful theme from 7 years ago only this year the Dwarfs were on ponies and rode without Snow White. Unbeknownst to most people watching the riders were all heavily handicapped by very limited vision through their masks but after only 4 full practices they performed well at Bury Farm against 14 other teams to earn their place in the final.
It seems to be a bit of a tradition now to almost always leave Saffron Walden until last when they announce the teams going forward to Olympia and this year was no exception – very nerve-wracking. The team were absolutely thrilled to hear their name finally called out and even more so when they realised that they actually went through in 1st place!
Three of the team’s ponies are in their 20s, Jim and Taffy are games ponies, Gunner a field companion / happy hacker while Mena is only 5 years old but all took to carrying the additional 3 dwarfs with no hesitation at all and behaved brilliantly throughout the routine despite all the crowd’s clapping.
For anyone wishing to get tickets for Olympia to watch the team in action the final is on the morning of Sunday 21 December (afternoon tickets are almost sold out already so hurry if you want one – but morning only tickets readily available).
The team were: Sophie Haylock on Gunner, Suzannah Engelmann on Jim, Claire Engelmann on Taffy and Jane Hood on Mena.
Many thanks to Leah Brown & Sarah Rook for grooming and to Dave, Charlotte, Keith and Jess for the extra last minute and much appreciated help with getting ready.