Wednesday’s first competition in the Land Rover Premier Arena was the AHD Six-Year-Old class, which is part of the Mitavite Six-Year-Old Breeding Series. It was a big field of about 50 horses and 18 jumped clear, so the jump-off was an exciting one. Plenty went clear in this too, and the win called for an extra effort, with speed really vital.
While he didn’t want to watch those ahead of him in the jump-off, Matt Irvine knew what he had to do on his fast-moving La Perla.
“My goal was to go out and go fast and clear. I knew I could open her up and trust her.” He certainly did, and 38.33 seconds was just enough to take the win from Kirsten Worker who had scorched around on Melanie’s Choice in 38.8 seconds.
Matt took on the ride on La Perla about half way through her five-year-old season. She was bred and produced by Maurice Beatson, and Matt now has a half share in her. He’s had some experience in winning Horse of the Year titles, having won the Pony of the Year, but has a few more in his sights. He lines up in the Dunstan Nutrition Young Rider of the Year on Friday with Wall Street III.
AHD Ltd Six-Year-Old of the Year (part of the Mitavite Breeding Series):
- Matthew Irvine (Takapau) La Perla
- Kirsten Worker (Auckland) Melanie’s Choice
- Duncan McFarlane (Taupo) Be Mine NZPH
- Tegan Fitzsimon (Canterbury) Windermere Cappuccino
- Vicki Wilson (Hikurangi) LC Showtym Cassinii
- Julie Davey (Hastings) JD Ruby
Here’s our gallery of other jumping photos from Wednesday.