HomeTechnologyMan From Snowy River legend 'cracks' on as Excessive Nation celebrates tumultuous...

Man From Snowy River legend ‘cracks’ on as Excessive Nation celebrates tumultuous yr

What began as an concept to draw vacationers to Victoria’s Excessive Nation has became a ardour to protect Australia’s bush heritage.

This weekend’s Man From Snowy River Bush Pageant at Corryong had crowds capped at 5,000, however in its 25 years it has expanded from a one-race occasion that took opponents up and again a mountain to the present five-day format.

Pageant board member Peter Hunt stated a complete of seven occasions now showcased the horsemanship of stockmen and ladies.

The competition had develop into not solely a nod to Jack Riley, the unique Excessive Nation legend, but additionally a means of preserving bush abilities, he stated.

A man smiles while leaning on a fence post.
Peter Hunt says the competition helps to protect the area’s pure and cultural heritage.(ABC Goulburn Murray: Greg Ryan)

“I’ve acquired an eight-year-old grandson who can plait his personal whip — his father taught him — that makes me very proud.

“Whip-cracking is on show right here for individuals who have by no means seen it.

“If we do not try this, it will likely be misplaced eternally.”

Whipping up love for a dying talent

Wagga Wagga-based whip-maker Anthony Rennick began within the commerce when his father went to an RM Williams plaiting faculty and made a whip and a belt 28 years in the past.

Mr Rennick is a member of the Australian Whip-crackers and Plaiters Affiliation — one in every of a handful making it a full-time occupation.  

He has bought his whips throughout the globe and was at this yr’s competition displaying his commerce and repairing many a crack.

“There’s a large curiosity in whip-cracking and all of the younger children operating round right here, it is prefer it’s joined to their arms.

“It is good to see.”

A man stands over a whip and works to repair it
Anthony Rennick repairing a baby’s whip.(ABC Goulburn Murray: Greg Ryan)

Lucy Adams from Wakool gained the competition’s girls whip-cracking championships at simply 14 years of age.

Runner-up Kerry Toyer of Batemans Bay stated it was enjoyable to interrupt the sound barrier with simply the flick of a wrist.

Ms Toyer began the game greater than 20 years in the past when she was travelling with a bullock group displaying Australia’s pioneering and transport historical past.

She has watched the passion for whip-cracking develop.

Three women with cowboy hats stand with ribbons across their chests, holding trophies and holding a whip.
Whip-cracking champions (from left) Lucy Adams, Kerry Toyer and Pyper Tucker.(ABC Goulburn Murray: Greg Ryan)

Ms Toyer stated the championships had been getting larger yearly, however doing properly was not as straightforward because it seemed.

“It is all in regards to the method; you can’t power a crack out of the whip, you have to get it rolling on itself.”

Common upkeep and dressing of the whip helped to maintain it in form, she stated.

A close up picture of a man holing a plaited leather whip
Kerry Toyer’s handmade whip helps maintain an Australian custom alive.(ABC Goulburn Murray: Greg Ryan)

Historic abilities for in the present day

Worldwide horseman Man McLean has been an everyday on the competition since 2000.

The official Australian inventory horse ambassador shows his horses, recites poetry, and is a poster boy for the nation’s bush heritage.

“Once I first got here right here it was primarily the opponents; everybody dressed like me with a inventory hat,” he stated.

“Now, you see lots of people in shorts and fancy metropolis garments.”

A man on horse at Corryong
Man McLean and Dreamer are all the time a crowd favorite.(ABC Goulburn Murray: Greg Ryan)

Mr McLean stated horsemanship was nonetheless on the coronary heart of the competition, however it had grown to maintain the heritage and the legends of the previous alive.

“It is the actual deal — the one who wins this might make a life on the land and possibly run these brumbies down the mountain similar to Jim [Jack Riley] did.

“To place ourselves to a check, to rise to it, and to know the horse will all the time have our again — there may be nothing prefer it.”

This yr’s Man From Snowy River Problem, which checks probably the most gifted and expert horse and rider groups, was gained by Morgan Webb.

Excessive Nation restoration

The competition was postponed final yr because of the pandemic.

It was a serious blow for the neighborhood, with Corryong severely impacted by the 2019-20 bushfires and determined for tourism {dollars}.

Crowd numbers had been diminished to nearly half this yr on account of COVID-19 restrictions, however it was nonetheless a fine addition for the financial system, with tons of of households tenting and hundreds attending.

The competition board estimates the competition can generate as much as $5 million for the Higher Murray neighborhood.

Crowds of people, many with cowboy hats, look on at an arena
People, hooves and hats gathered on the Corryong Recreation Reserve.(ABC Goulburn Murray: Greg Ryan )

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