Monica Howland with her horse after being shown how to lay him down

Horsemanship Clinic - March 26-27, 2011

Our horsemanship clinic went well with all participants receiving intensive training from Paul and Carolyn Murphy. Great to see horses and riders benefitting from the tuition and support. Always amazing to watch the positive transformation from one day to the next and the genuine pleasure riders getting from the response of their horses

As ever, it's lovely to meet really nice people who add to the evenings' "round the campfire" conversations with their life experiences that entertain and keep us enthralled.

Our next horsemanship clinic will be in June - dates to be advised.

Joe Lawrence receiving tuition from Carolyn Murphy

Group picture of participants with coaches Paul and Carolyn (far right)

Newcastle Regional Show - March 18, 2011

Joe on his gelding Silverthorn Seeker after the ASH novice hack

Australian Stock Horses (ASH) and Australian National Saddle Horses (ANSA) are judged on the first day of a three day show at Newcastle. We found ourselves in some very good company here and had to work hard for ribbons won under judge Mr Terry Ryan of Chinchilla, Qld.

We had a successful day with the following results:

  • Silverthorn Son of a Gun, won the yearling ASH colt class.

  • With April, Silverthorn My Girl placed 2nd in her led ASH mare class, 4th in the ANSA led mare; 2nd in ASH hack mare or filly; and a 4th with Joe in the ASH working mare.

  • Whiteash Tobin, placed 1st in led ASH gelding 2 & 3 years; 1st in led ANSA gelding 3 years and under; and with Brittany in the saddle, 2nd in the ASH hack, 3yrs and under; 2nd in the ASH hack gelding; and reserve champion ASH hack.

  • Joe had a good day with his gelding Silverthorn Seeker starting with a first place from 18 entries in the ASH hack novice horse; 4th in the ASH hack 3 years and under; and 2nd in the working junior horse 3 years and under.

April on Silverthorn My Girl in the ridden ANSA mare/filly

Brittany on Whiteash Tobin in the ANSA ridden gelding

It is so pleasing to watch April, Brittany and Joe, who all work so hard to have these horses working well for them, and reap the rewards they so justly deserve. We are so lucky to have these dedicated young people sharing our interest in this fine breed of horses, not only in the show ring but home at grass roots level where they take a great interest in our breeding, breaking-in and training programme.

Yearling Silverthorn Son of a Gun

Camden Haven Show - March 12, 2011

Yearling Son of a Gun, Supreme Led ASH Exhibit

Once onto the Pacific Highway at Nabiac and travelling north we made good time after a very early start from home and arriving just as dawn was breaking across the showground. Even at this early hour we were lucky to find a suitable parking spot - such a lot of exhibitors.

The Camden Haven Show is suituated on a lovely safe ground with huge shady trees, good amenities, and with an excellent show committee, ran very smoothly and on time.

Our Australian Stock Horse judge was M/s Narelle Toole who efficiently worked her way through a very big programme that was the feature ring of the show.

Brittany riding Toby

Our team consisted of Julie, Paul, Brittany and Joe. With us we had the stallion Knights Jugaby, yearling Silverthorn Son of a Gun, mare Silverthorn My Girl, gelding Whiteash Tobin, and Joe's gelding Silverthorn Seeker.

The ring proceedings commenced with the junior judging in which Joe placed second and Brittany third. A nice start to what proved to be an excellent day.

Paul on Jugaby in the first phase of the stallion hack

Jugaby had a good day with a first in his stallion led class followed by reserve champion stallion; first in the stalliion hack; and a first in the stallion working.

My Girl then placed first in a large led mare class and ultimately was sashed champion mare; second in the mare hack with Brittany; joined by Son of A Gun took out the breeders group of 2 that saw six groups competing; third in the working horse ridden by a junior, and a second in the open station horse both with Joe.

Son of a Gun certainly drew many admiring looks with his flashy looks when he won led yearling colt, champion yearling or foal, and ultimately the Supreme ASH Led Exhibit. Son of a Gun partnered My Girl to win the breeders group of two.

Joe had a good day with his own gelding Seeker on their first day out with us, placing second in his led gelding class; second in hack ridden by a junior; second in the three year old snaffle bit event.

Toby was our most successful exhibit who took out the Hi Point ASH on the day and received a beautiful trophy rug. Our thanks go to Liz Hayward Imperial Floats for her sponsorship. Toby started with a first in his led gelding class followed by champion gelding, and with Brittany in the saddle he placed first in the maiden hack; first in the gelding hack and ultimately reserve champion ASH hack; Paul rode him for a first in the three year old snaffle bit class; and Brittany then rode him in the junior rider ASHLA class where she placed second.

Brittany on Toby, Hi Point ASH of the show

Joe riding Seeker

It was lovely to see a very proud Brittany on a sashed-up Toby in the grand parade in the company of all the other breeds of horses and ponies alongside the alpacas, cattle and other livestock, to be highlighed and capped off with the announcement and presentation to Toby of the Hi Point ASH of the show. We feel that Toby and Brittany are forming a nice partnership and look forward to witnessing the future, as it unfolds for these two.

Brittany on My Girl

Brittany on Toby, Hi Point ASH of the show

Yearling Son of a Gun, Supreme Led ASH Exhibit

Brittany on Toby

Paul on Knights Jugaby

Joe on My Girl

2011 Canberra Royal Show
Judge Ms Karen Nicholl

With Canberra Royal 2011 behind us, and Sydney Royal Show approaching rapidly, and of course, a few local shows in between, we could say that we are in show-mode.

Canberra, such a long way to go, but a big pleasant country style of show, is one we like to attend. Probably. from our point of view, one of our highlights are evenings around the camp swapping news and tales and catching up with friends and associates we haven't seen in a while.

We had some measure of success with Whiteash Tobin (Knights Jugaby x Rosebrook Mona) winning his led ASH 3 year old gelding class - a nice win for a young horse we think a lot of.

Next came the ridden events with Toby in the ASH hack any sex, under 4 years with Brittany in the saddle competing at her first royal show, for a fifth placing.

Then Joe's turn came with a ride on Silverthorn My Girl in the ASH youth hack for a fifth place; and immediately following that event was the ASH junior judging competition in which Joe placed a creditable third. A nice result for Joe at his first royal show.

With Paul in the saddle Knights Jugaby placed a creditable fourth in the working stallion event.

Joe is happy with his 3rd in the judging!

Horsemanship Clinic Report

We were really fortunate that we had two not-so-hot days for our highly successful horsemanship clinic held here at Silverthorn over last weekend. We had people from as far afield as Camden, Sydney, Central Coast, and with our more local riders settled in for two days of intensive motivation and demonstration of new skills with great enthusiasm and a willingness to take on board Paul's approach to preparation and training techniques. They were introduced to starting young horses; learning to prepare their horse for turns, roll-backs, and flying and simple changes.

We were asked on numerous occasions over the two days from younger members of our group about the ASHS junior judging, so April Spriggs took these young people aside and went through the requirements of a junior judging class. April was State Champion Junior Judge, Nationals Finalist at Sydney Royal, and Champion Junior Judge at Adelaide Royal. April covered areas such as conduct, attire, general rules, judging procedures, conformation, and scoring. We are always happy to encourage young people to step up and have a try at this event as we feel this is an important part of their personal preparation for the show ring.

During the weekend we set up the mechanical cow which is a great system for training the horse to work a cow, stop straight, improve roll backs and maintain proper position. Those who participated in this unique training technique enjoyed the experience and certainly benefited when it came to the real thing.

In the latter part of both days we brought a small group of cattle in for everyone to have the opportunity to work with and this proved to be a very popular note to finish on.

Our group of riders were a delight with their enthusiasm and keenness to take on board the skills demonstrated. It was obvious to all that these two days were well spent and everyone had plenty of new exercises to take home to work on.

New friends were made and it was lovely to catch up with old acquaintances. Many of our guests were pleasantly surprised as friends they didn't realise were coming for the clinic rolled through the gates. Our morning and afternoon tea breaks were well earned and welcome and the Saturday night get-together over dinner was pleasant and relaxing.

Next Horsemanship Clinic

For those interested we plan to hold another clinic on March 26-27th. Paul will be covering much of the same as this past weekend and Mrs Carolyn Murphy, our very popular dressage instructor & accredited EA Coach, will be instructing as well. A great opportunity to set your horses up for the coming show season. Contact us if you wish to secure a place.

February 11th, 2011

There are a couple of things that may be of interest you - firstly, that Newcastle Regional Show are requiring pre-entries for their annual show and secondly that Canberra Royal Show timetable has changed slightly for the ASH and ANSA classes. You should check their individual websites for details.

Equitana will be coming to Sydney Showground for the first time this year - 10th to 13th November. If this is anything like the Melbourne experience, it shouldn't be missed.

Backpacker Kath from Wales spent two weeks with us recently and we all benefited by her very pleasant outlook to life, and cheerful approach to hard work. Kath is a graduate in Town Planning and has taken a year out to travel. She has a rural background and has a Welsh cob back home who she shows in Mountain and Moorland classes, she loves cross-country, show jumping, dressage, and hunting. We were able to introduce her to a cattle muster that she enjoyed hugely and told us that this was one of the highlights of her trip.

Pictured here is Paul on Easy Acres, Joe on My Girl, and Kath on Barsham Cattle Echo, setting out for a morning of cattle work - refer to Echo on our sale page.

Congratulations to young Laura Strelitz for her win at Uralla Show taking out Open Galloway Champion on the mare Silverthorn Elliette (Six S Stud Charity x Montcalm Luke). Elliette has turned out to be a great asset for the Strelitz family who use her for both show and campdraft. Elliette is full sister to Silverthorn My Girl.

Brittany and My Girl working out in the Junior Hack 13-18 years

Elizabeth McKelvey on two year old gelding Silverthorn Gideon

Paul with judge Jillian McGregor after having won Supreme Ridden ASH on Shotgun

Morisset Lake Macquarie Agricultural Show - 29th January, 2001

After heat wave conditions during the week and a sweltering Australia Day we were dreading the thought of showing in the heat at Morisset Show at week's end.

Thankfully, the day dawned nice and cool with some cloud cover, then a nice cool breeze came up making conditions much more pleasant than anticipated. Competition was strong with top quality horses and very large classes overall.

We had a good show with the four horses we had with us - the two-year-old colt Silverthorn Easy Acres and three-year-old gelding Whiteash Tobin for the three years and under classes and the stallion Silverthorn Shotgun and mare Silverthorn My Girl for the open classes.

Easy won his class and was later sashed reserve champion ASH stallion to Mick Allen's typey black yearling colt Silverthorn Spiderwick (St Ronan Abdul Smoke x Silverthorn Invergordon). Toby placed third in his led gelding class and was ridden by our new young rider Joe Lawrence in junior rider, three and under, and gelding classes.

We saw Elizabeth McKelvey there with her young two year old bay gelding Silverthorn Gideon (St Ronan Abdul Smoke x Barsham Sunaround) and were very pleased with the way she has him going so softly.

My Girl placed third in a long line-up of top quality mares. With Brittany Hetherington in the saddle she received four second placings (including junior ASHLA), three thirds. and ultimately reserve champion junior hack. An excellent result considering there were 22 competitors in Brittany's junior classes.

Shotgun was the star of the team when he placed 2nd in his led class, 2nd in the stallion hack, 1st in the stallion working followed by champion working. The final event of the day was the Supreme Ridden ASH and with the quality of finalists in the line-up, he certainly had his work cut out for him. He treated us all to an impressive combined hack/working peformance which ultimately saw him take out the title of Supreme Ridden ASH. After reading this you might like to refer to Shotgun's page and read "Shotgun's Story" to appreciate what monumental milestones have been achieved by this little horse to reach this point.

Our sincere thanks go to Lakes Rural Produce, sponsors of reserve champion stallion/colt; Lynken ASH Stud, sponsors of reserve junior; Chariot Horse Floats for champion working; and Specsavers-Morisset Square for the supreme ridden.

Young ASH riders watching with great concentration in the Junior Hack 13-18 years (Brittany's in the middle)

We came across a pile of old "Hoofs and Horns" magazines recently and on browsing through the October 1993 issue found this picture of Colin Litzon (above left) winning the Stockman's turnout class at the Brisbane Royal Show 1993.

How things have changed since then!

This is how a stockman should look when he's going out for a day's work. Remember the first time the Stockman's Turnout Class was held at Sydney Royal? It was a lot of fun - the real stockmen there turned up with cow bells, plaid shirts, work hats, sensible working gear. Others turned out as if they were doing a proper turnout class, horses and gear all polished so brightly and with spotless attire. Everything went well for the polished ones during the gear and conformation checks but many soon came to grief when asked to crack a whip, or do the workout pattern which involved some turns or flying changes.

For those sitting in the grandstands watching the event it was a real shame to see those who did really wonderful workouts and were deserving of placings, sent to the back row to see the competitors who, admittedly, had gone to a lot of trouble in their appearance, take out the major placings.

The pity of it all is that 160 points are allocated for type and conformation, saddlery, gear, costume, and general appearance. Only 40 points are allocated for manners and paces. Wouldn't it be more important for a stockman to have a horse that can capably do the job?

Perhaps the name of the event should not contain the word "turnout" - just call it a stockman's class for example.

We enter this event at Sydney because when we go to Sydney Royal we go to compete in every class we may be eligible for - unfortunate for the genuine stockmen because gold coloured dog chains, gold bits, and mobile phones are not on their list of priorities.

I wonder if we will ever get a judge who would have the temerity to ask all those lined up in the event to dismount, hobble the horse with the hobbles they are carrying, and walk around the horse, untethered, cracking a whip. Not likely.

Pictured (above right) is Paul on Jugaby at Sydney Royal 2010 - needless to say, this is not how he looks when he sets out to do a day's cattlework around the property.

ASHS Coach

In late 2010, after a hiatus of some years, the ASHS once again invited suitably experienced Stock Horse trainers to apply to undergo an evaluation process for the purposes of qualifying as accredited ASHS Coaches. We are pleased to announce that as a result Paul, having successfully passed the examination and accreditation process, is now an Australian Stock Horse Society Level 1 Accredited Coach.

The accreditation process included both theoretical and practical components and Paul was examined on his confidence and competence in horsemanship and his coaching ability and he was required to demonstrate the use of safe, effective and correct techniques for training horses and riders.

Achieving this award means that Paul is affiliated with the Australian Sports Commission's National Coaches Accreditation Scheme (NCAS). The NCAS is the registering body for Australia’s best Equestrian Coaches and its Coaches are recognised nationally and endorsed not only by the Sports Industry, but also by the Equine Industry and the Federal Government.

Although Paul has been successfully training and coaching for many years, we are proud that the ASHS has honoured him with this highly regarded formal qualification. Paul would like to thank all who supported him and offered encouragement in his endeavour to reach his goal of becoming a qualified coach.

Happy smiles all round with April on Girl having just won champion ASH hack and Brittany on Toby with the reserve champion ASH hack

January 23, 2011 - Hunter Regional Show Horse Association Annual Hack Show - Morisset

We thought we'd give our youngsters a day out at this hack show and get a feel for how they are going away from home. On board the truck we had the two year old colt Easy Acres, two year old filly Journey, three year old gelding Toby and our mature mare My Girl. Our team consisted of Paul and Julie, 17 year old Brittany Hetherington, 16 year old Joe Lawrence, and April Spriggs. Lovely to catch up with like-minded friends with their young horses out for the day.

It was a great day out and a very successful one as well. Morisset showgrounds, can be hot at times, but on the day we had a nice cool breeze for most of the day.

We showed in both ASHS and ANSA classes under judge Mrs Alex Jones.

Silverthorn Easy Acres started well with a first in his led colt ASHS class followed with reserve champion Australian Stock Horse. He then placed 3rd in the ASHS hack under 4 years and 2nd in the ASHS working under 4 years.

Silverthorn Journey had a good day with a first in her led ASHS filly class; and then, although out of the ridden class ribbons, worked pleasingly for Joe on her first day out under saddle.

Silverthorn My Girl didn't have time for the led ring today as she and April were concentrating on the ridden rings in which they won their ASHS mare hack and then took out champion ASH hack; and then 2nd in the mare working which led to reserve champion working ASH. They also won their ANSA mare hack class.

Whiteash Tobin had a brilliant day. First out in the led classes with Joe leading for a first in his gelding under 4 years and on to taking out champion ASH; and first in the ANSA gelding under 4 years and junior champion ANSA horse. Under saddle with Brittany he was 1st in the ASH hack under 4 years, followed up with reserve champion ASH hack; 3rd in the ASH working under 4 years, and 3rd in his ANSA gelding class.

Paul on Easy in the ASH under 4 years hack

Brittany on Toby also in the ASH under 4 years hack

Joe on Journey in the ASH under 4 years hack

Lined up for the ASH hack under 4 years class are from right, Joe on Journey, Paul on Easy, and Brittany on Toby.

19th January, 2011

Pictured is Paul with April on My Girl, Elizabeth on Journey, Joe on Junior, and Brittany on Toby. April, Elizabeth and Brittany all represent us in the showring and we are looking forward to Joe joining their ranks as a Silverthorn rider this coming show season.

18th January, 2011

It's always nice to hear from owners of Silverthorn horses - Jaymee Hyland and her family regularly keep us posted with news of Jaymee and her gelding Silverthorn Sportsman (Knights Jugaby x Silverthorn Madalyn). Jaymee is pictured here on Sport on a winning run at Cumnock Campdraft last week. A great effort for such a young rider.

Mick Allen has sent this photo of his very successful yearling colt Silverthorn Spiderwick (St Ronan Abdul Smoke x Silverthorn Invergordon) at a recent show. Congratulations Mick, you're doing a great job.

We enjoy promoting and encouraging young people to "test the water" with Australian Stock Horses, and 10 year old Georgia Laurie from "Knowla", Moppy, is no exception as she is pictured here during the school summer holidays on one of our sale horses Barsham Cattle Echo. Refer to our sale page for details on this filly.

Introducing Joe Lawrence

Joe has recently joined Silverthorn to work and undertake a traineeship with us.

We met Joe last year when he purchased Silverthorn Seeker, and later when he returned for coaching during school holidays. We recognised in Joe a potential that not everyone is blessed with and that is his true passion for horses and his keen desire to learn and absorb.

His hometown is Barmedman, NSW where he has grown up on a cropping/sheep raising property.

Joe's ambition is to ultimately become a respected horseman and trainer. Joe will be accompanying us on the show circuit as a youth rider and we are looking forward to nurture this young man and help him realise his dream.

January 4th, 2011

The new year has begun and we are now turning our thoughts to the preparation of our show team for the coming show season.

Besides having Joe here on a permanent basis, we have Brittany Hetherington spending her school holidays to hone her horsemanship skills and to brighten our days.

Pictured here is Brittany riding Easy Acres, our two year old Acres Destiny colt,
who is being educated for the ridden ASH youngstock classes.

This started as a nice line-up of three people on their horses posing for a photo ... until one of them challenges the others to stand up on the saddle ... . Joe is on Girl, Paul's on Toby, and Brittany is on Easy.

1st January, 2011

We managed to take pictures of some outside mares' foals by Shotgun before they return home to their owners and share these with you below.
As you will see Shotgun has stamped most of these youngsters with his distinctive flashy markings.

Phone: 02 65583152

Mail: 1806 Gloucester Tops Rd
Gloucester 2422

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