DRAFT SET: Riders’ renewed confidence with first gig locked in
GRANITE Belt campdrafters have been given a reason to get back in the saddle, following confirmation the 2021 Showdraft will go ahead.
The one-day draft on January 31 will be the first in the region in more than a year, after COVID-19 regulations forced the cancellation of other drafts throughout 2020.
Campdraft committee chair Clint McErvale said he was eager to get the sport up and running in the region again.
"Everyone is sitting on the fence waiting to get their horses back into work," Mr McErvale said.
"Providing the show goes ahead, we'll run the draft."
About 280 competitors are expected to compete in the annual event, however nominations will be restricted by cattle availability.
Mr McErvale said COVID restrictions would play a large part in how the event would be run.
"We draw a lot of competitors from over the border, so it's going to be up to the ruling of COVID restrictions whether they can come," he said.
"There's been a few drafts running around in the western districts where restrictions are more relaxed, so we're banking on them easing more by then."
For competitor Ray Whitmore, the January draft will be the first time he's competed in 18 months.
The opportunity to compete against the top riders was one that motivated him to get back in the saddle.
"All the riders are very competitive but it's a very levelling sport - you can be king one day and at the bottom the next," Mr Whitmore said.
"There's three things to take into consideration; the rider, the horse, and the best - it's all got to fall into place and then it goes quite well," he said.
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