The start of the cross country event at the Dallarnil Sports Day.
The start of the cross country event at the Dallarnil Sports Day. Darryn Smith

Off and running at Dallarnil

SAMUEL Tobin and his horse Knight wait in anticipation for the Dallarnil Sports Day every year, just as sports fanatics like him have done for 89 Queen's Birthday holidays.

The talented horseman has attended the annual event, staged between Childers and Biggenden, for the past three years, and was lucky enough to share his success in the flag race with his three sisters this year.

“I always love coming here, it's exciting and I love riding my horse, we will be coming back every year, it's not about winning, it's just about competing,” Samuel said.

Despite admitting he does not get too much time to practise the flags event, being able to help his dad and sisters muster cattle on the family farm three times a week certainly contributed to his medal haul.

The youngster was among a huge crowd to attend another thriving event, which Dallarnil Sports Club president Max Pearce estimated had grown in recent years.

“It's been up and down for a while, but this year is certainly bigger and we have drawn interest from Roma to Rockhampton and Brisbane,” the president said.

According to Mr Pearce who celebrated his 20th year at the helm of the operation, record numbers in the riding and children's horse events, as well as the athletics, had ensured the action did not stop.

The president said it was the only carnival of its kind still operating in Australia, combining unusual sports with craftwork, stalls and a sideshow alley.

“You talk to people from far and wide, and this is the main event on the calendar in these parts,” Mr Pearce said.

“I think the bull riding is the highlight... it's high quality and good prize money, but we have also had the mower racing for the second year in a row, wood chopping, rough riding, jumping and cross country, plus all the stalls were sold out.”



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