Saturday 27 April saw the West Midlands Region Adult Gymkhana take place at the Rodbaston campus of South Staffs College, near Penkridge, Staffordshire.
The Victorious Red Devils
The West Midlands annual event was devised and created as a memorial and tribute to Heather Lucas, the West Midlands regional committee chair, whose sudden and untimely death occurred in October 2009.
Teams consist of five members, four on horseback and one on foot, who compete in a series of different relay races to try and win the annual 'Clueso Cup', which is named after Heather’s horse.
The twelve teams taking part in the event were the Somerford GGGr, Worcestershire Blue Belles, ESRC Fine Fillies, Red Devils, TRAC Red Dragons, Wrekin Raiders, Black Treccies, South Staffs Stars, Bradley Dale Pink Panthers, Bradley Dale Purple Ponies, Bradley Dale Daffodils and finally Mercia Treccies, the defending champions who had won the last two competitions.
The rather colourful names were accompanied by even more innovative team dress, Bradley Dale Pink Panthers being particularly striking!
Battle commenced over seven different relay races, consisting of a bending race, two mug shuffle, stepping stones, quoits and cone, sock and bucket, tyre race and finally the flag race. Each race had three heats with the top three teams from the heats going into a points scoring final.
Previous gymkhanas had seen fierce competition and this year was no exception. The chill wind and the rain outside did not deter the efforts of the teams as adrenaline and enthusiasm kicked in.
After some 3 or more hours of stiff and close fought competition, the Red Devils from Worcestershire emerged victorious to lift the Cluseo Cup.
Final placing’s were 1st Red Devils, 2nd Mercia Treccies, 3rd Worcestershire Blue Belles, 4th Bradley Dale Pink Panthers, 5th South Staffs Stars, 6th Black Treccies, 7th TRAC Red Dragons, 8th Somerford GGGr, 9th Wrekin Raiders, 10th ESRC Fine Fillies. Bradley Dales Daffodils and Purple Ponies teams retired from the competition.
That said, all teams were definitely winners. Despite a few spills and minor injuries everyone enjoyed themselves, helping to make the event a big success and a tremendous memorial to Heather.
The West Midlands Committee would like to thank everyone involved in organising and running the games. In particular a big thank you must go to Dee from Wrekin First Responders, helping those sustaining minor knocks and injuries.
We look forward to next years competition!
The Pink Panthers, South Staffs Stars and the Blue Belles neck and neck in the mug race
The Fine Fillies going for a slick hand over