Looking for a different diversion on your trip? Why not consider volunteering at one of our many Equestrian Eventing events held around NSW and Australia for a weekend getaway? Eventing (for short) is the Olympic discipline combining Dressage, Show-jumping and Cross-Country spread over 2 days (sometimes 3 depending on the event). Coming from a Military Drill background, the modern sport has the Riders and horses compete together as a team to achieve the lowest score (based on time and penalties) over a set dressage test, with show-jumping the quickest clear round and the most exciting part, the cross-country element, where they compete over a set course of natural logs, natural terrain with water jumps and manufactured fences at a set height. All of the riders choose what grade they compete in according to their ability and qualification. We run heights from 45cm to 120cm. At 120cm high they also have to jump 270cm across. (Imagine your average picnic table is only 90cm x 180cm!) By the way, Australia is a strong Eventing Nation, recently attaining Silver with our Aussie Team at the recent Tokyo 2020 Olympics!
What could you be asked to do? Firstly, let me assure you that we do not expect our Volunteers to be “horsey people”, we just require a desire to help an event run smoothly and safely. Many Event committees are small with people busy in their own lives, who are passionate about the sport and love to run events for riders to attend, but there are never enough bodies on the competition day to cover all the jobs. There are a large number of Volunteering jobs that you could help us with, such as:
*Marshalling riders into the arenas for Dressage or Show-Jumping (ticking names off a pre-determined list).
*Picking up rails in the Show-jumping arena.
*Pencilling for our lovely judges (writing down the scores in dressage and show-jumping as dictated to you by the judge).
*Jump-judging on the Cross-Country course, ensuring competitors go over the correct jump and ticking them off a list as they ride past, with some time keeping roles as well. This task comes with a UHF radio, clipboard and stopwatch AND a briefing prior to the start as well as continual contact throughout the duration of this phase with our Officials. You may need to be available for up to 4 hours in this phase, but we keep you fed and watered.
*As well as being able to help out anywhere you might be required.
All this might sound overwhelming, but I can assure you it doesn’t come without instruction or assistance. We want you to come back! Most of our current crop of helpers come from the sport itself, riders or their hangers-on who understand that events don’t just happen. The age range of these helpers are 8 to 80………you are never too young or old to Volunteer.
Camping and facilities: Our events are usually held on Showgrounds, private properties or purpose- built venues like the Sydney Olympic Equestrian Venue (SIEC as Horsley Park). We can offer you at most venues free camping facilities. We would prefer to have you on-site for logistics purposes, as Events generally start around 9am and are usually wrapped up around 3:30-4pm. We don’t mind if you want to arrive a few days earlier to see the local sights or leave a few days later to recover…. Eventers are generally a social bunch, and are not unfamiliar with the term “happy hour”!
Pets as a rule are welcome, (Eventers LOVE dogs) but they must be on a lead at all times, cleaned up after them and we would prefer that Fido or Fifi doesn’t come with you to your Volunteering role. Organising Committees have the final say regarding these things, so please ask if your pets are welcome at a particular event so as to avoid any potential issues.
Where and when: Events are run all over NSW from the North Coast at Nana Glen to Camden and Sydney, right down to the South at Albury whilst inland from the Great Divide at Wagga Wagga, Narrandera, Coonabarabran and many, many more! Our calendar usually starts from February with Events kicking off right through to December. Please see our attached DRAFT CALENDAR for 2022.
Finally, there is a big movement in Europe and the UK of like-minded folk like yourselves that follow events around and use it as a catch up. This is something we as an organisation would love to get going in Australia. As an example, Committees usually need around 30-40 Volunteers at an event. If this sounds like something you and a group of mates would like to do, please don’t hesitate to contact myself or our State Body, Eventing NSW for more details.
Oh, and don’t forget, these Events are run all over Australia, so if you catch the bug, we might even see you in Tassie or WA!
Happy travels and hopefully we might see you soon at an event.
Phone: 0427 473 887
Looking for a different diversion on your trip? Why not consider volunteering at one of our many Equestrian Eventing events held around NSW and Australia for a weekend getaway?