Spectacular weather, and spectacular jumping on cross-country day at the South Island Three Day Event at McLeans Island, Christchurch today.
It’s a tight tussle in the Mitavite FEI CIC3* with just 0.1 penalties separating Giles Gormack (Amberley) on Lucero and Kate Fleming (Pauatahanui) on Mendelssohn after the phase.
Giles had held a small advantage after his dressage performance yesterday and jumped a smart clear round over the John Carmichael-designed track today although incurred eight time penalties. He was supposed to go first, but on the second-to-last warm-up fence, Lucero pulled a shoe so Giles had to race back to his truck and put it back on! Man of many skills, this Giles. Kate therefore set off first, and did a cracking round, which turned out faster than Giles’ so she has given him no room for error in tomorrow’s final phase.
Giles said that Lucero “felt bloody good, bloody good!” He deliberately set out a bit slower, with the aim of establishing more control. The horse is a bold jumper and put in some great leaps, taking strides out here and there, but looked good and obviously enjoyed his day.
Kate also had shoe problems, with her horse pulling a shoe early in the course, but she kept going. “I had a fairly conservative ride after he pulled that shoe. He was very brave. I love this course, you can open them up a bit more than other courses.” Mendelssohn was born in Christchurch and Kate believes that he likes coming back here.
Te Puke’s Abby Lawrence has maintained the lead in the Ultimate Design & Renovation Ltd FEI CCI2* but not on the horse she led on after dressage! Her dressage leader, Indy RE, struck some issues early in the course and Abby elected to retire. She said it was completely a rider error. “We ended up over-jumping and ran out of room. She had nowhere to go. There was no point in running on any further, so I decided to save her for another day.” However, Abby hasn’t relinquished the lead, as she put in a great performance on Song. “She was really, really good! She towed me the whole way home. She loved it.” This was the first trip Abby has made to this event, although she has tried to come down before. Last year she was thwarted by the Cook Strait ferries not sailing due to the weather. She came down this year to get a qualification, so was delighted with how well Song had come home. “It was a very nice course. It rode as it walked. I was a little bit cautious, especially going into that mushroom fence. The course suited this horse, being nice and open.”
The class was not without its drama, however. Brent Jury on SE Hedging was eliminated for missing a fence towards the end of the course. Emily Cammock had a nasty fall with Ngahiwi Frosty. We understand Emily has nothing broken, but was advised not to compete on her other horses. Current Three-Day Event junior champion Lucy Turner now lies second on Carbon on a score of 58.1pen with Corey Wood from Wyndham on Pick Up Line third on 59pen. Corey was buzzing when he came back from his round. “He scorched around it. It was the best round we have ever done. Prior to the start he was pulling my arms out, so I was a bit worried, I thought I would have problems holding him, but he listened to me. I let him go a bit more out the back and we came home well within the time.”
Holly Morrell has come down from Taupo with her lovely Pampero and they have held on to their lead in the ESNZ Eventing Canterbury FEI CCI1* after putting in a stunning round, finishing comfortably inside the time. “He started really quietly, and I had to rark him up! It seemed a really long course, but the flat ground makes such a difference. Not having to twist and turn works for him, being a warmblood.”
Jessie Fitzsjohn from Christchurch and What’s the Buzz also put in a stellar performance to hold their second position after dressage. Dayna Fox, another North Islander (from Otorohanga) had no problems on course to lie third on LV Little Chief. It will all hinge on the show jumping though, as there is only one rail separating the top six contenders.
Two other northerners who are thoroughly enjoying their trip down south are Sharon Cann and Frank Phillips. Sharon was full of praise for the course. “We both thought it was an excellent course. Richard Crowe did a super job, there was plenty to do, and it was a very horse-friendly track. We came down here six years ago and are astounded by how much work has gone in here. The going was really, really good, and a lot of other people from the North Island would love this course.”
Frank, who turns 60 in 15 days, was rapt with his round on his very nice horse, I Told You So. “No, he is not for sale. He is in his forever home!” Frank was determined to make the trip down south before his significant birthday and now has an invite to go mustering in the high country so will be back again soon! “You have to enjoy life, you will spend too long looking at a coffin lid” he wisely said. Frank is currently in fourth place, with Sharon in eighth.
Another good performance was from Brodie Roberts who is due to compete at the Pony Club Eventing Championships next weekend in North Canterbury. The 18-year-old was another praising her horse, SR Livingstone, to the max. “He was like a bullet! He really enjoyed himself out there.”
In the lower classes, courses jumped well with little changes at the top of the order meaning tomorrow’s show jumping will be the decider for many.
Show jumping gets under way in the main arena at 10am following the final trot-up which starts at 7.30am.
Mitavite FEI CIC3*: Giles Gormack (Amberley) Lucero 71.5, 1; Kate Fleming (Pauatahanui) Mendelsshon 71.6, 2.
Ultimate Design & renovation Limited FEI CCI2*: Abby Lawrence (Te Puke) Song 53.8, 1; Lucy Turner (Broadfields) Carbon 58.1, 2; Corey Wood (Wyndham) Pick Up Line, 59, 3; Kirsty Sharapoff(Christchurch) Shoot The Breeze 82, 4.
ESNZ Eventing Canterbury FEI CCI1*: Holly Morrell (Taupo) Pampero 50.5, 1; Jessie Fitzsjohn(Christchurch) What’s The Buzz 50.8, 2; Dayna Fox (Otorohanga) LV Little Chief 51.5, 3; Frank Phillips (Te Awamutu) I Told You So, 51.7, 4; Courtney Davis (Waipara) By Hoki 52.2, 5=; Sophie Griffith (Kaiapoi) Noir Et Blanc 52.2, 5=.
Hei Hei Pharmacy CCN105: Megan Taylor (Kaiapoi) Killur 34.5, 1; Amalia Rowley (Timaru) Mexico 37, 2; Emily Wingham (Ashburton) Queen of Jazz 37.6, 3; Emma Simpson (Oamaru) Metsaluna 38, 4; Mikayla Green (Rangiora) Stars Ransom 38.2, 5; Nicole Chapman (Amberley) PaintTheTownRed 38.4, 6.
Rangiora Veterinary Centre CNC105: Eve Hawes (Reefton) Spookee Possum 34.7 1; Emma Van Vianen (Christchurch) Ka Pai Kiwi 35.9, 2; Jordan Kruger (Christchurch) Bamboozle 37.1, 3; MaddyTait (Christchurch) Island Road 38.2, 4; Hollie Kooman (Outram) Loretta 48.5, 5; Zara Power (Rangiora) Radiradirah 48.7, 6.
Eventing Canterbury CCN95: Georgie Dickson (Wanaka) Deja Vu28.6, 1; Jamie Atkinson (Prebbleton) Ahuriri Dusk 31, 2; Benjamin Rowley (Timaru) Innocent Eyes 32.2, 3; Abriele Morse (Timaru) Wembleybrook O’Driscoll 32.5, 4; Tarryn Jones (Christchurch) Tenshi 33.5, 5; Zoe Haylock(Greenpark) Artwork 34.6, 6.
Canterbury Equine Clinic CCN95 (4, 5 & 6 Year Olds): Courtney Davis (Waipara) GemTime 28.5, 1; Rebecca Smithey (Rangiora) SD Amourosi 31.8, 2; Rebecca Smithey (Rangiora) Willy-Bay-Go 35, 4; Lauryn McCutcheon (Dunedin) Worth The Wait 39, 4; Nicola Barringer (Leeston) Northern Star 40.4, 5; Kate Fleming (Pauatahanui) Tux 40.8, 6.
Rangiora Equestrian Supplies CCN80 A: Luca Swale (Queenstown) Holmslee Black Beauty 29.3, 1; Colleen Marrett (Temuka) Attenborough 29.8, 2; Bridgette Mackay (Prebbleton) Westwood DalmarRicochet 30, 3; Annabel Adams (Christchurch) What’s News 32.2, 4; Millie Chamberlain (Cust) Cool Change 33.5, 5=; Abbie Baker (Christchurch) Retail Therapy 33.5, 5=.
Eventing Canterbury CCN80 B: Shane Maley (Darfield) Rainier 29, 1; Petra Green (Rangiora) Tiger Woods LS 32.9, 2; Anna Schroder (Rolleston) Waipuna Jack 33.1, 3; Jessie Fraser (Wanaka) Apepe36.2, 4; Mark Cowie (Christchurch) Hillcroft Flaunt It 37.2, 5; Alison Lunn (Amberley) Sidney 37.8, 6.