Katherine is “friendliest” show on the circuit

LOCAL WOMAN: Debbie Young lives in Katherine but is camping at the showgrounds for the experience.
LOCAL WOMAN: Debbie Young lives in Katherine but is camping at the showgrounds for the experience.

Katherine is known on the horse circuit as the show to compete in.

Darwin woman Angela Stringer has travelled down to Katherine with her horse Belle Eve to compete in the show.

“I have always been told that the Katherine Show is the best one to come to,” Ms Stringer said. 

“There is a really friendly atmosphere and everyone gets involved, it is a real community here.”

Katherine local Debbie Young will also be competing at the show this week on her ex police horse Bounce. 

“The Katherine Show would have to be one of the friendliest shows, a lot of people come all the way here just for the friendly atmosphere,” Ms Young said. 

“Everyone talks to each other and encourages one another, it does not matter if you are a winner or a loser. 

“Sometimes at shows people can be a bit stand-offish if they do not know you and they are more interested in winning than having fun,” she said.

“For me this show is all about socialising Bounce and giving him an experience, it is a learning process for both of us.

Ms Young  said she did not care about winning ribbons but about sharing a fun experience with her horse.

“I actually live in Katherine but I am camping here at the showgrounds because I love the whole experience, you can sit down and talk about horse stuff with people who have the same passions as you,” she said. 

“I love The Katherine Show, every year I wonder why I do it, you get up at five or six in the morning to get your horse ready and you are just thinking to yourself ‘why am I doing this?’ but at the end of the day it is worth it.”

Ms Young was born in Darwin but has lived in Katherine since 1975. 

“I used to compete in the Katherine Show every year as a child, right up until I was 20 then I changed disciplines and started playing polocrosse,” Ms Young said. 

“You will see it being played this weekend at the show, it is like lacrosse on horseback and it is the most adrenaline driven sports I have ever played.”

Ms Young said she is not nervous to be competing at the Katherine Show again this year. 

“This is my first year back doing show work and I have a new horse Bounce, who is actually an ex-police horse.

“I have done dressage and hack in the past, so it is just about starting new with a new horse, it takes time, dedication and persistence,” she said. 

Ms Young said some competitors head to The Alice Springs Show in preparation for Katherine’s show. 

“You can also join the Katherine Horse and Pony Club as an adult and you can practice and learn how to do all the show riding, they teach you how to prepare your horse, do dressage, hacking and anything to do with riding.”