Dressage success

Helena and Oops all smiles

Purebred Morgan Stallion Killara Lodge Oops has worked his way into the ranks of the Top Ten ponies in Australia competing at Preliminary Dressage! This exciting young stallion with extravagant movement is owned and competed by Helena Shanal. Oops competes under the EA name of Double S Eclipse and is a consistent performer at high level competition.  According to Helena he can handle any atmosphere, and with his performance, looks and movement he has the making of a top competition horse.

Oops and Helena also made the cut for the Young Pony Aussie Champs in Werribee Vic at the national finals at Dressage & Jumping With the Stars. They only had one weekend to qualify as Helena had not really considered entering him and had only really just got him going under saddle. He got over 65% in both tests on the one weekend on the coast near Brisbane which he had to do in an indoor arena, giving them the two Young Horse scores they needed as a minimum to apply for the finals. On the day although he was still very immature he behaved perfectly and came 10th overall for 4yo ponies in the country.

It is Helena’s dream that he make the top 3 as either a 5yo or 6yo and gets ridden by the German guest rider to assess his training. She believes that once they ride him they will have a hard time not putting him up into first place.

Since then he has started at his first ODE, first Stockman’s challenge and was Helena’s mount for her Working Equitation trainer and judge’s exam in NSW. Oops was also featured at the Queensland Festival of Dressage and he was in the pony dressage showcase quadrille with 3 other horses, 2 of which were mares. It was a lovely large crowd and an indoor venue, all of which was just fine by him.

So confident is she with this young stallion that Helena can put child riders on to feel certain movements and work. He has been successfully ridden by 9yo riders in lessons on the flat to help them with their half halts and transitions.

Their best dressage result to date was at the recent Futurity Championships at Nambour, where you have to nominate your horse in March having never ridden a certain level before and then turn up in October and ride a test for the level you nominated that you would be training for all year to be able to ride. It was Eclipse’s first Novice test ever and he WON out of a field of WBs and TBs and other full sized horses. He was the only pony in it and beat all those large well moving professionally trained horses to waltz away with the jackpot prize!

Recently, Oops was selected to participate as the only pony in the recent Young Horse judge’s clinic which Helena was thrilled about because the more the judges learn about the Morgan horses and see them performing, the more they will accept them in the competition arena. Oops has also recently run a qualifying score for next year’s Dressage and Jumping With the Stars and was the winner of the 5yo pony qualifying event, the only pony to actually produce a qualifying score on the day. He came fourth when scores were compared with the 5yo young HORSES, beating several warmbloods at their own game!

Oops and Helena have an exciting future ahead of them. Helena is already looking ahead and not only planning to take her little stallion eventing against much bigger horses, but take him up the ranks to FEI  level dressage. We will be watching this combination very closely and no doubt be cheering them on well into the future.

Morgan Pony Stallion
Morgan Pony Stallion
Morgan pony stallion
Morgan pony stallion

2 Responses to “Dressage success”

  1. Fiona Swain

    Brilliant job Helena! All your hard work and dedication is paying off. Can’t wait to see you competing Grand Prix Dressage on a pure Morgan :)….I know it will happen!
    P.S. Uncle Cheo sends his love & best wishes to Oscar the super star part bred Morgan for his win at DWTS this year!

  2. Clarie Chappell

    Helena, you are truly an inspiration to all, as you & Killara Lodge Oops Aka Double S Eclipse continue on your journey together. Oops might be tiny but with your guidance & his natural Morgan trainability, you continue to amaze judges in competition against larger horse breeds, Well Done & best of luck with all future challenges.

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