Twelve members from Manestream Vaulters in Central Saanich are home from Chilliwack with their bags a little heavier then when they left.
The team members were competing in the equestrian vaulting (often described as gymnastics or dance on horseback) provincials Sept. 14 to 16 and they brought home nine medals.
“It was really fun, we competed with about 12 different teams from all over, even from Alberta and the U.S., and we just did really well,” said Charlotte Galbraith, one of the team members from the Peninsula who nabbed gold.
Galbraith’s mother, Carol, added the competition was more interesting than usual because of unforeseen circumstances with the team’s four-legged friends.
“We had huge challenges this year because our club horse, Island Queen, was lame so we couldn’t take her with us,” she said. “We have a new pony, Savaard, a 21 yr old Fjord, who we debuted at the Saanich Fair so we took him and he carried all our walk and trot competitors, but the rest of the club members had to compete on leased horses.
“It is a challenge because they don’t have any time to practice with the horse,” she explained, adding the team did extremely well, all things considered.
Galbraith received the gold medal in the Canter D category as well as the Provincial Zone 6 Reserve Champion Trophy.
Manestream’s walk teams won first and third for their walk routines and two other team members, Rowan Belanger and Courtney Cook came second and fifth, respectively, in the Canter D category.
Both Galbraith and Cook hail from the Peninsula, along with their teammates, Madison Paquette and Kara Wick. Other team members included Vanessa Krause from Sooke, Rowan Belanger from the Highlands and Katrina Brooke from Victoria.
The vaulters’ season continues through the winter, which sees the athletes train indoors with their horses in a sand ring. They will ramp up in the spring for their next competition which is scheduled for June 2013.