Horse breaker and trainer Pat Randall of Casino with his three-year-old clydesdale Bart.
Horse breaker and trainer Pat Randall of Casino with his three-year-old clydesdale Bart. David Nielsen

Horses drafted to give Beef Week extra pull

DOLLY, Princess, Blossom and Bart may not be able to enter the Miss or Mr Beef Week competitions, but this week all four Clydesdales have had their nails cut and manes groomed for Sunday's Casino Beef Week Draught Horse Competition.

The horses' Casino trainer, Pat Randall, said it would be rewarding to compete with his 'big gentle giants' on Sunday, considering that he had broken in all four horses.

The event will include a led class competition, where the Clydesdales will be judged on their grooming; a four-wheel wagon presentation, where the horses will pull vintage carts; and a time trial slide and log obstacle course.

"I reckon Princess will be the fastest of the four at the log snigging (pulling)," Mr Randall said.

Mr Randall's son, Shane, who has been helping his dad prepare the horses this week, said he found training Clydesdale was a lot easier than thoroughbreds because they were more sensible and gentle.

He said he learnt everything he knew about breaking and training horses from his father, who he called the 'master.'

While Shane said he always got a thrill from buying an unbroken horse and working with them to see 'what they could do', it wasn't a job everyone could do.

"You're either born with the feel or you're not," he said.

Beef Week president Col Sullivan said the draught horse competition was a great example of the diversity of events on offer during Beef Week.

"There is a strong contingent of people in our district who break and breed horses, and to have a day where they can meet and see what they do is great," he said.

Some of the wagons to be used on Sunday have been modelled on those from decades ago, and Mr Sullivan said this would allow people to see what it would have been like in Casino when horse-drawn wagons were the main source of transportation.

The Draught Horse Competition and Field Day will take place on Sunday as part of Beef Week Family Day. The event starts at 9am at the Casino Showground. Tickets for the day costs $5 for adults and $12 for a family.


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