Saturday 15th March was the last hunt of the 2013/2014 season for The Route hunt with the proceeds of the meet, organised by Jazz Horses, going to RDA Coleraine.
Hunt members and friends gathered at Ballylagan Equestrian Centre in glorious sunshine and enjoyed refreshments provided by Martin and Frances Mellet of Jazz Horses.
Before setting off a cheque for £1,000 some of which was donations on the day was presented by hunt host Martin Mellet and hunt masters Ian Holmes and Philip White to Mr Rex Humphries President of RDA Coleraine.
Mr Humphries expressed his thanks and appreciation for the generous donation which would help fund the worthwhile work of RDA Coleraine.
At 12.30pm the hunt left the yard at Ballylagan and headed for the jumps on the forest path, the gallops and the outdoor arena .
After this there were a couple of jumps before a surprise drop hedge.
The hunt then hacked along Ballylagan Lane and onto the Coolyvenny Road to Mr Humphries’ farm. Here there were numerous fences, bales, ditches, hedges and laneways.
Several riders parted company with their horses and for Rachel Kelly and Jill Hughes it was a trip to A&E while hunt master Ian Holmes used the expertise of GP Mark Quinn to sort a dislocated finger rather than visit A&E. After three hours and over 70 jumps horses and riders were happy to return to Ballylagan where all appreciated the refreshments provided.
Organisers wish to thank the Jazz Horses team for another great hunt which had taken many hours of hard work to set up. Thanks also to Rex Humphries for the use of his farm and to the many farmers and landowners who allow the hunt the use of their land throughout the year and to the hunt organisers who set up the hunts throughout the year.
The next Route Hunt event will be hunter trials held at Maddybenny equestrian centre on Sunday 13th April 2014.
75cm optimum time: 1st, £50; 2nd, £30; 3rd, £20
85cm optimum time: 1st, £50; 2nd, £30; 3rd, £20
95cm fastest time: 1st, £75; 2nd, £50; 3rd, £25
75cm pairs - fastest time: 1st, 2x bags of horse feed & 2 x luxury Easter eggs; 2nd, 2 x Easter Eggs; 3rd, Cream eggs
The course will be used by Eventing Ireland on Saturday 12th April so as well as being a great training ground with lots of prizes and rosettes up for grabs it should also be a fun day for all.
For further details on this or about joining the Route Hunt please contact the Hunt secretary Julie Smyth on 07793 209 899.