Applications Now Open – 2023 Inter-Pacific Exchange
Each participant must:
- Be a current financial member of Pony Club WA
- Be 17 to 25 years of age as of January 1,2023
- Must hold a full B Certificate or higher by close of entries (1st August 2022)
- Demonstrated acceptable level of behaviour, citizenship and horsemastership.
- Attendance at a minimum of three rallies in accordance to the Working Rally Document
The idea of an Interpacific Pony Club Exchange originated from a visit in 1960 of Victorian and New South Wales pony Club members to the Pebble Beach Pony Club in California.
This first “exchange” was such a success that the Pony Club Association of Victoria issued an invitation to the United States of America, Canada, New Zealand and all Australian States, to participate in an “exchange” in Victoria in 1961. The USA was always a member of this exchange until their last attendance in 1975. They re-joined the Interpacific Exchange Rally in 1999, when they were hosts.
During this visit the first Interpacific Committee was formed. It was agreed that exchanges should take place every second year.
The Exchange consists of a minimum of two weeks, and a maximum of three weeks during which the participants will tour the host country, visiting various areas and various Pony Clubs. The teams also participate in three competitions and spend many hours in training for the competitions.
One competition is the Horse Trials, a three-phase combined event, consisting of Dressage, Cross Country Jumping and Show Jumping. The teams for this event are scrambled, that is teams are made up of one member from each country. They compete for the “Kangaroo Trophy”.
Another competition is a Teams Show Jumping Event for the “Goodwill Trophy”. The teams from each country compete against each other under Nations Cup Rules.
A third competition is held which is selected by the host country. Events which have been held have included a polocrosse competition, a Tetrathlon and a ride and drive event.
The purpose of this Exchange is summed up in the words of one of the Exchange Founders from the USA.
“The purpose of these Exchanges is to enable children of different countries, bonded together by their common interest, to visit each other, to live, play and work together with the idea of becoming friends, to learn about each other’s countries and customs and exchange ideas especially about horses and the various methods of riding, training and caring for them.”
At present the Interpacific Exchange Rally is open to teams of Pony Club riders aged 17 to 21 years (inclusive) representing the countries of Canada, Hong Kong, Australia, Great Britain, Japan, the United States of America and New Zealand. Essentially it is a youth exchange scheme aimed at furthering cordial relationships between the youth of the competing countries. A team usually consists of six riders.
The minimum pre-requisite for selection is the B Efficiency Certificate with proven experience in eventing and show jumping. Nominees for selection will need to have experience on a variety of mounts at top Pony Club level in both fields. The competition, on strange horses, is strong and the selected riders need to be the best available in their field.
Selection to represent Australia in the Interpacific is the ultimate honour available to Pony Club members. Nominees therefore should display additional talents to their proven horsemanship.
They should be enthusiastic and operative at club level to earn nomination. They will have a proven record of regular attendance at Pony Club Working Rallies.
As representatives of Australian youth, courtesy, deportment and grooming are important.
They will need to be a good ambassador for their State and Country and should be able to speak on behalf of the team (sometimes at short notice).
They should have current knowledge of Pony Club aims and objects and what Pony Club is all about. Candidates should also be expected to have a reasonable knowledge of their own State and Australia, and of the country hosting the Interpacific Exchange Rally.
Riders must have their B certificate and can be aged up to and including 25 years as of the 1st January.
The State Coaching Panel select the WA team member through either the submission of written applications, a ridden selection day or both.