It was a busy time for eventers throughout the world this Easter.
As already reported on our Facebook page, it was great to see Andrew Nicholson’s A+ team doing well at Greater Witchingham on Thursday. He finished first and second in the Advanced Intermediate class on Avebury and Nereo. Avebury led after dressage on a score of 27.9 and added 9.6pen cross-country. Nereo added just 7.2pen to his dressage score of 30.6.
Andrew also had Qwanza in an Open Intermediate but was eliminated after he jumped a novice fence instead of the one he should have. See, it does (sometimes) happen to the best!
Jesse Campbell’s season got off to a good start at this event too, with a win in the Intermediate Section A on Amsterdam II on a score of 37.4. He was also ninth on Cleveland and 12th on Kaapachino in the Open Intermediate. Another Kiwi, Hannah Norvill, was fifth on In the Darco in the CIC*.
Gatcombe has always been a good hunting ground for New Zealand eventers. Dan Jocelyn had a good outing with his team, coming eighth on Blackthorn Cruise in an Intermediate class and 10th on Dasset Cool Touch in an Open Intermediate. He had a novice out for a good run: Southfork, who finished 10th in his class. Dan was also competing with his Badminton mount Beaucatcher and had a good run for fourth in another Open Intermediate class. Beaucatcher is currently on the wait-list for Badminton, so fingers crossed he gets a run! Tim Rusbridge (Wise Flight) was seventh in an Intermediate.
Sir Mark Todd had his Badminton horses there too, as part of their build-up. On NZB Campino he finished 10th in the Advanced Intermediate, after posting a good dressage (28.1) but having two showjumping rails and time faults. On Leonidas II, his dressage score was 28.4 but 14 faults in the show jumping and 18 time faults dropped him down to 20th.
Jock Paget had a good win on his novice horse Zazu, scoring a 15.5 dressage score! Adding ten time faults to that, he still finished over five marks ahead of the second placegetter. Lizzie Brown was also in that class, finishing ninth on Havanna Van Castanaehof.
Jonelle Price was 11th on Ascona in an Intermediate class, with husband Tim doing the same in another class on Obos Cooley.
The event was eventually abandoned due to the very wet conditions, so there were a few horses in the Intermediate Novice (including a number of Jock’s team) who will be looking for another start.
Blyth Tait elected to go to Burgham where he was second on Dasset Courage in the CIC**, just pipped by Polly Stockton on Imperial Trump. Darius was 14th in the same class. Blyth took Xanthus III out for a run in the CIC3*, finishing well down the leaderboard after clocking up a few time faults on the cross-country. This horse is aimed at the Rolex Kentucky four-star event in late April. Blyth also had another reason to attend Burgham – he was the course builder for some of the lower classes! There is no end to that man’s talents…
Lucy Jackson had her Badminton hopeful, Bosun, in the CIC3* and finished 10th with a good fast cross-country round. Oliver Townend won the class on Dromgurrihy Blue which is one of the three horses he has nominated for Badminton. Tiana Coudray (USA) was second on the lovely grey Ringwood Magister, also aimed at Badminton.
Joe Meyer was competing in the United States at Poplar Place Farm CIC3* and was first to go on his Rolex Kentucky entry, Clip Clop. He and ‘Clippy’ added 11.2 time faults to their dressage score (ninth after dressage) to move up to second overall, so a good bit of preparation for the pair’s first four-star soon. Joe has been very patient with this Irish sporthorse gelding – who has been a bit of a challenge – and has developed a very good relationship with him now. The competition’s winner was Brazilian Nilson Moreira da Silva riding Muggle. Nilson is trained by Sir Mark Todd and is also aiming at Kentucky. If you would like to read more about this event, head over to Eventing Nation’s article. You can also view Joe’s cross-country round at Red Hills event on this link.
Over in France, Michael Jung extended his awesomeness by taking the win in the Nations Cup competition and also getting second! Our friends at Equi-ratings produced this wonderful graphic showing just how dominant Michi Jung is.
Germany were clear winners in the Nations Cup teams competition, with Michi winning the individual placings on La Biosthetique Sam, second on Fisherrocana FST. Sandra Auffarth (current World Champion) was third on Opgun Louvou with the only round without time faults; German domination!
France finished second in the teams and the Irish team did well to finish third. Clear show jumping rounds from Cathal Daniels with Rioghan Rua and Claire Abott riding Euro Prince, along with four-fault scores from Jonty Evans aboard Cooley Rorke’s Drift and Austin O’Connor riding Kilpatrick Knight, saw Ireland hold off a strong challenge from Australia, who had to settle for fourth.