There’s a new event in Auckland! Well done to Jaime Campbell and Travis Morgan for organising the Harrison Lane Jumping Spectacular at the Van den Brink family’s beautiful Karaka property, Willow Park, right next to the Manukau Habour.
Some generous sponsors came on board too, and Roger Laplanche built the courses. The weather was appalling on Friday night but came to the party in the weekend. Great entertainment was provided, with a jumping / jockey challenge which was won by Olivia Dalton and Samantha Spratt.
Big winners included Natasha Brooks on Kapattack in the Manfredi Horse Grand Prix, with Samantha Morrison runner up, and Olivia Dalton on Simply Samantha winning the Maxlife Pony GP from Charlotte Wear on Hawaii Haka. The feedback from those at the event was outstandingly positive.
Further down the country, it was a good win for Lucy Akers on Letitbe GNZ in the GP at the Central Districts SJ Group Foxton Fundraiser. Maurie Beatson was second on Mandalay Cove with Oliver Edgecombe and Ultra Blue NZPH third. Georgia Percy on Suprise Illusion won the Country TV Pony GP. Georgia Massey on Larinium won the Canterbury Equestrian Young Rider Series class, with Matthew Irvine winning the Telford Junior Rider series class on Oscar Star.
Hard decision to sell
Lots of riders are confronted by this dilemma at some stage. Which horse should they sell? Katie Laurie has faced the decision plenty of times, but that doesn’t make it any easier when it comes to one of her all-time favourites, Dunstan Springfield (aka Bart). “He is such a kind horse, so laid-back but I can’t ride as many next year, I’ll have two kids and I’ve got a lot of young horses to bring on.”
The 11-year-old by Indoctro has proved himself as a top jumper, and Katie has won many titles on him, from Lady Rider of the Year at this year’s HOY through to World Cup rounds and, of course, the Olympic Cup in 2014. There are still plenty of competition years ahead of the lovely chestnut gelding.
“The time has come when he can do what he did for me for someone else. He could suit a really competitive young rider, and it would be so nice if he could stay in New Zealand.” However, Bart is being advertised internationally, so who knows where he may end up. Let’s hope that wherever it is, it will be a great home for this kind and talented horse.
ESNZ has also announced their team to compete in the FEI Children’s International Classics which will be held as part of the Glistening Waters Series Final at Masterton this weekend. Good luck to:
- Brayden Aarts (13), riding George Jetson, from Pukekawa
- Emma Watson (12), riding Fun House, from Morrinsville
- Ruby Mason (13), riding Mr Acho, from Napier
- Georgia Percy (14), riding Surprise Illusion, from Masterton.
Reserve is Sarah West (14), riding Showtym Cruiser, from Matamata. Team Manager is Jeff McVean, so the kids will have a great time and no doubt learn a lot.
The FEI World Children’s Challenge showcases the sport’s stars of the future. Run over four rounds – two each day – jumping heights of up to 1.20m and spreads of 1.30m, a field of 11 of the country’s top pony combinations aged 12-14 years will do battle for a spot in the final, while the scores of the team will count towards the World Teams Challenge. It will conclude on Sunday.
Talking of teams, there has also been a team named for a Korean trip from May 22-24 where they will ride borrowed horses at the Hongcheon CSIP. Well done to Briar Burnett-Grant, Ally Carson and Emma Watson. The reserve is Leeshelle Small, and Kaye Williams will be their team manager.
Kiwis winning overseas
One special Kiwi doing well overseas is the horse Kiwi Ludo. Ridden by 16-year-old Conor McMahon, he won the Connolly’s Red Mills two-star international GP at Millstreet, Ireland. Kiwi Ludo was ridden earlier in his career by Logan Massey, both here and in Europe. Emily Short then rode him until August, with Conor taking over the ride recently.
Ben Maher and Sarena won the CSI5* US$500,000 Rolex Grand Prix at the last event in the Winter Equestrian Festival in Florida after a seven-horse jump-off. McLain Ward on HH Azur was second, Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum on Fibonacci 17 third. Ben has only had the mare for a year and has taken all of that time to get to know her. “This is the first class she has won, but she picked the right time and I hope there will be many more. I decided to play it safe and leave the jumps up. That is not my nature normally, but I think I played a smart game tonight and put the pressure on Todd [Minikus]. Fortunately for me, it worked out. It could have gone either way.”
The jumping fans’ eyes now turn to the Global Championship Tour at Miami Beach from April 7-10 where there is a quality field jumping in an amazing setting. Check out the article on those competing at this event and check out the beautiful photos at the end of this post.
The latest world rankings are out as at the end of March. No change from the leader: it is still Frenchman Simon Delestre. Christian Ahlmann (GER) jumps up to second from sixth, then it is Scott Brash (GBR), Penelope Leprevost (FRA), McLain Ward (USA), Kent Farrington (USA), Gregory Wathelet (BEL), Bertram Allen (IRL), Kevin Staut (FRA) and Beezie Madden (USA).
New Zealand’s highest ranked athlete is Sharn Wordley who is now 76th. Bruce Goodin is 147th and Katie Laurie 375th, while Samantha McIntosh is 686th.
Last NZ show jumping event this weekend
The Solway Showgrounds, Masterton, Wairarapa will be the stage for the season’s final event, the Copthorne Glistening Waters Show Jumping Championship this weekend. Good luck to the 330 horses entered.
A total of 18 titles will be up for grabs on the first two days of the three-day show, 11 show jumping and seven show hunter, followed by a special awards dinner to honour the champions on Saturday night.
Riders from across New Zealand compete in more than 50 shows throughout the season, earning points in this winner-takes-all event. While wins for Helen McNaught-McFarlane (Taupo) and Carnutelabryere in the Equitak Excel Premier League, Ellie Carson (Putauru) aboard Tony the Pony in the Country TV Pony Grand Prix, Amanda Roy (Gore) on Rumours NZPH in the Let’s Bale Pro Am, and Emily Hayward-Morgan in both the Canterbury Equestrian Young Rider and Telford Junior Rider are foregone conclusions, the rest of the series are wide open with everything resting on the finals with maximum points on offer.
Of particular interest will be the Equissage Horse Grand Prix which is currently led by Invercargill’s Nicole White aboard Cricklewood Ace. Nicole is not attending the final, leaving it open for Simon Wilson (Waipukurau), Emily Hayward-Morgan (Te Awamutu), Maurice Beatson (Dannevirke) or Tegan Fitzsimon (Christchurch) to take the honours.
Current Caledonian Amateur leader Candice Kingsbury (Ashburton) is also not making the trip up from the South Island to compete, so it too is up for the taking, as are the age group series which are all very tight.
The show hunter series finals also finish for the season at this show. And new for New Zealand are the inaugural Glistening Waters derby classes which run on Sunday and have been modelled on the UK’s hugely popular working hunter derbies.
Organising spokesperson Jenny Booth said they had been thrilled at the response to this year’s show. It was a huge undertaking for a small committee and they were indebted to some fantastic local support. While numbers are still not what they wanted, they are up on last year and promise quality, rather than quantity.
The show will be live-streamed by Country TV with results available through www.main-events.com
Thanks to Annie Studholme for the preview of this show.