JACK Mobberley remembers watching his hero Zeb Pearce from Merriwa win a buckle at the Junior Stockman’s Challenge in Murrurundi and thought he’d never be able to do it, but this weekend he did!
“In 2014 I saw a friend win a buckle, it inspired me to get a buckle and I never thought I’d be able to do it, but it turns out I did!” said Jack.
“Yeah, it feels pretty good and to get the overall point scores, I reckon it’s even better,” smiled Jack.
Jack first got on a horse when he was three or four years of age and began competing in 2013.
He comes from a campdrafting family and made the finals in Tamworth in January, he said he loves nothing more than camping with his family and riding on weekends.
A junior stockman’s challenge has many different events, which is why he likes it.
“There are a heap of different things and you never know what you will have to do there, they have all different sorts of stuff and you go there and have fun,” said Jack.
“The first day we did the whip crack, pack saddle, cattle handling, shoeing and bare back and the second day we did the cross country and then the finals,” he said.
“My favourite event this year was the cross country, we went over all the jumps and we cracked the whip and it was pretty fun,” said Jack.
Following closely in Jac’s footsteps is his sister Makayla Mobberley, who won the under 13’s on her horse Style – a horse from Zeb Pearce.
The siblings have competed in the Murrurundi Pony Club’s Junior Stockman’s Challenge for the past five years and in the last four years they’ve both been champion three times and a runner up.
As the mum of two children into horse sports, Jodie Mobberley, does a lot of wrangling, but said she loves to see her children inspired and ‘be amongst it’.
“Zeb inspired my kids and when he went to America to do saddle bronc riding, they got his old horse,’ said Jodie.
“It’s a good thing for the kids, a good atmosphere, my favourite is watching the kids doing the all round things and I love hearing them galloping up around the side of the mountain and hearing the whip crack and them jumping the jumps, it’s pretty cool to be amongst it,” she said.
“The kids are onto it, every morning before school they make sure their horses are fed and they take their dogs for a run, so they do look after their own animals,” she said.
“It does get busy, but you get used to it,” Jodie Mobberley said.
The Junior Challenge is an event which leads into the King of the Ranges (KOR) Stockman’s Challenge held in February in Murrurundi.
Jack was too young to be eligible for this year’s prize of free entry into the KOR, but was pleased for this mate Duty Hagon from Manilla who will be going to the ‘big one’ next year.
“I’m not old enough to go yet, but Dusty got it and that will be pretty good for him,” said Jack.
“I reckon it would be pretty good to go into the big one and have a go and see how I go,” Jack Mobberley said.
Jack wanted to thank his mum, dad and sister for their help and made special mention of his horses, he had to stop riding Waylon a few years ago, but now rides Koshi, Waylon’s half-brother.
Scone Equine Group came in for an extra thank you, because they saved Koshi’s life this year following a leg infection.