Putting Bouldercombe's best 'hoof' forward
NAOMI Goody is transforming the face of horse riding in Bouldercombe.
Treasurer of the Bouldercombe Pony Club, Ms Goody has built the organisation from the ground up with the help of co-founder, Kim Smith.
When the pair decided to establish the group in 2015, they did not have any equipment for the grounds.
They have since continued to work towards creating a space where their members can compete in rallies and clinics.
Ms Goody grew up in the town, where her passion for riding horses grew - and so she knows the needs of fellow riders.
In November 2015, the co-founders devised a plan to host a community meeting to find out if there was a hunger in the town for a pony club where riders could hone in on their horsemanship skills.
The Bouldercombe community gave a positive response to the idea, which prompted the club to move forward.
And it was full steam ahead - the group became an incorporation and part of Pony Club Association Queensland with help and encouragement from the late Carole Flintham.
In January 2016, the Bouldercombe Pony Club was officially launched and people began to sign up for memberships.
The pony club was off to a good start, having received a grant for items to get them started such as a shipping container and some jumps.
Now 12 children and about 24 adults (riders and social members) attend the club to learn the tricks of the trade.
"We've been very lucky, the clubs in our area have helped us out,” Ms Goody said.
Looking to the future of the Bouldercombe Pony Club, Ms Goody has submitted another grant application - and she could hear a result by the end of the month.
They have big plans and would utilise the funds to purchase more panels to build an arena to host bigger events such as gymkhanas and clinics.
The Bouldercombe Pony Club grounds once served as the town's speedway track.
Ms Goody recalled the speedway had come to a close when she was a young child - and her mother had previously been involved in setting up the course in the 1970s.
About 10 to 12 years ago, a large fire ripped through the track, which later became a vacant piece of land.
Once the pony club had been established, it was decided their group be based from the grounds where the speedway had once been held - which meant a transformation was in order.
"We did a burn to clean it all up and tried to do some earthworks where they dug out the track,” Ms Goody, also a member of the town's rural fire brigade said.
The group aims to get their hands on more equipment to allow the club to grow.
After starting off with a bare field, they've proven they can host a successful event, with their recent gymkhana raking in a couple thousands of dollars.
Ms Goody, a mother of two children has rode horses most of her life and enjoys the novelty of being able to travel to the club on horseback.
"The big push for me was I have two daughters and they're horse-crazy, my husband's an ex-jockey,” Ms Goody said.
"There's a lot of people who get around Bouldercombe riding horses but not a lot of them have floats - to be able to join a club where you can just ride to was our big driver.”
With a couple of instructors, and other members undergoing an instructor's course - it appears the club will be well-equipped to train fellow riders for some time.
They would love to see people from outside their area join the club and host more clinics for the children in a fun-filled environment.
"When we started it, we wanted our kids to go back and make sure they learn their basic horsemanship, because everything else with horses will follow - jumping, dressage, it all falls into place,” she said.
"And if they don't have fun, they won't want to continue.”
If you wish to become a member, or for more information on the Bouldercombe Pony Club, contact 0427 381 725.
Bouldercombe Pony Club
Located on the Burnett Highway, Bouldercombe - 22km south of Rockhampton;
Officially launched in 2016;
The club is awaiting the results of a grant application.