In a chilly but beautifully sunny day, Amanda Pottinger flew around the cross-country at the Taupo National Equestrian Centre. She could not be happier with her 10-year-old horse Just Kidding after retaining the lead in the NRM CCI3* adding just 8.4 time faults to their dressage score. “The ground was so much better. I did lose a bit of time in the trees as I had to take it easy there. The waters; he was great! He ballooned over the brush into the first one and was foot-perfect in the second one. I couldn’t have asked for any better.”
Ticking off another big goal today was also a relief to Amanda. “He has never got under 10 time faults in a three-star. He doesn’t have a big gallop so always struggles.”
Amanda admitted that she would be definitely nervous tomorrow before the show jumping. “Especially with Donna right on my tail on Mr Hokey Pokey!”
Samantha Felton had a busy and good day. Ricker Ridge Divine Right had an unlucky stop and 12 time faults. “That last water, she just launched off and I couldn’t make the turn. She was amazing everywhere else.”
Donna Edwards-Smith had two clear rounds on her two horses, and now holds second place with DSE Mr Hokey Pokey and fourth with DSE Tangalooma. On DSE Mr Hokey Pokey she incurred 5.2 time faults. “He was incredible. For my earlier horses the footing was a bit holding so I started a bit quieter than I wanted, but then I put my leg on coming out of the woods and he just went. He did everything I know he can do. He is such a star.”
It was great to see DSE Tangalooma storming around, back to the form he showed prior to his injury. Donna says her vet was here but hid behind the car. “It has been a long two years recovery! Bones was incredible. He just loves it.”
Emily Cammock was given 50 penalties for supposedly jumping outside a flag early in the course at fence five, the angled brushes, on Shaw Lee, but these were taken away after photographic evidence made it clear she was inside the flag. Emily was delighted with her horse afterwards. “He is such an amazing horse. He’s a machine. Normally he goes cross-country like a show hunter, but I was pushing for time.” The pair are now in third place.
Emily was also amazed at how well the grounds had recovered today. “The ground was good but we did slip a few times. Anywhere else in New Zealand you wouldn’t have been able to hold it after all that rain yesterday. There were some good changes to the course from last year, which definitely improved it.”
Ashleigh McKinstry sits in fifth place on Pioneer Brass Monkey after jumping clear with 21.2 time faults. “He was as bold as always. I did a few circles and things out the back to try to slow him down! I really missed at fence four, but he is a scopey jumper and just dealt with it. We also stumbled in the water, and I had really long reins but he latched on to the next element and went for it.”
Campbell Draper and Mr Mancini are sixth after jumping clear with 25.2 time faults. “I skipped the trees this time,” he said, after having an altercation with a tree last year. “He put in a couple of short ones, but overall it wasn’t too bad for an old shearer from Pongaroa!”
Heelan Tompkins completed with a bunch of time penalties and 20 jumping faults. She was still really pleased with her round on her young horse Snow Leopard, although said they did have a few hairy moments. “He was amazing but I made a silly mistake down the bottom end and got 20. It was totally my fault. He was super, and I had so wanted to do a Michael Jung but just couldn’t do it. I backed off after the 20, and took it slowly.”
Chloe Phillips-Harris had a great round on Cor Jet, jumping clear with 34 time faults. “I love him so much. He always feels like he loves the cross-country so much. This year I felt like it was an even partnership, we helped each other.” The pair sit in seventh place.
Bates Saddles CCI2*
Keeping hold of her lead after a fabulous cross-country with Waitangi Pinterest meant we had a very happy Maddie Crowe, who couldn’t stop smiling. “She tried her little heart out. She jumped in so big to the water, so I had to do the option.” The pair did incur 3.2 time faults.
Stephanie Vervoort is in third place with X Factor after a cracking round but with 7.2 time faults. “He was really strong, but it was a huge improvement. I took my time at some of the combinations.”
Matthew Grayling and NRM Trudeau did a great job and had one of the few clear rounds within the time. “I went as fast as an old fellow could go,” Matthew said afterwards, delighted at his lovely grey who has only been eventing for a little over a year.
Elle White on Tui Teka had a great clear round incurring 16 time faults to be in tenth place. “It was our first CCI,” Elle said afterwards. “I took the option at the water, and he was really good coming out. He was super over the palisade – but favourite jump? None of them and all of them!”
Abby Lawrence didn’t have the round she’d hoped for with Indy RE. “She was very, very good and was going super until she stumbled at between fences 20B and C and we ended up on top of the fence, so got 20. It was a tough course.”
Nick Brooks and For Fame had a fast round, especially as they had a run out at fence seven. They incurred just four time faults. “He is such an athlete,” Nick says. “I am very excited about him.”
Jock Paget said that Angus Blue was a bit rusty but he still holds on to a good lead in the NRM CIC3* after recording the fastest round. “He was good especially as he hasn’t done much in the last nine months.”
Andy Daines sits in second place on Spring Panorama after incurring 18 time faults and having a bit of a life on course. “He was really good, I didn’t take my watch as I wasn’t worried about the time.”
Renee Faulkner was the second-fastest round of the day in this class, incurring 11.2 time faults. “He was great, but very keen. He needed to do the other half of Kihikihi as he just took me around.”
Jessica Woods was another who was very happy with her relatively new horse Just de Manzana, jumping clear but with 14.4 time faults. “She was awesome, I am so happy. I am still finding all the buttons.”
Samantha Felton had two good rounds in the class on Ricker Ridge Pico Boo and also Ricker Ridge Escada. While both horses incurred time faults, this didn’t worry Sam at all, who did not plan to go for time. She now has to make the decision as to which horse she will take to Melbourne. “I’m probably going to take Pico Boo, but will see how they pull up after this.”
Clarke Johnstone elected not to start his superstar Balmoral Sensation, but is still aiming to take him to Melbourne for the three-day event in June.
Fiber Fresh CCI 1* Championship
Clarke Johnstone has hit the lead in the Fiber Fresh one-star competition, moving up from third after dressage. It’s a narrow lead, though, with less than five marks separating the top five. Samantha Felton on Ricker Ridge Sooty NZ is in second, with Chanel Campbell also right up there on Astek Guardsman.
Wairakei CCN105 Championship
Dannie Lodder has held her lead in the Wairakei CCN105 Championship on Overnight Success, after having a difficult day in the other classes, including having a big dip in the water jump. There were a number of clear rounds in this class, with some great jumping from many of the young horses.
The trot-up is on first thing in the morning and the show jumping will be a nerve-wracking time for many of the riders, with very slender leads in most classes.
|1||Just Kidding||Amanda ‘Muzi’ Pottinger||53.9|
|2||DSE Mr Hokey Pokey||Donna Edwards-Smith||57.2|
|3||Shaw Lee||Emily Cammock||58.3|
|4||DSE Tangolooma||Donna Edwards-Smith||60.6|
|5||Pioneer Brass Monkey||Ashleigh McKinstry||72.3|
|Bates Saddles CCI2*|
|1||Waitangi Pinterest||Madison Crowe||43.9|
|2||DSE Cluny||Donna Edwards-Smith||44.5|
|3||X Factor||Stephanie Vervoort||50.2|
|4||NRM Trudeau||Matthew Grayling||51.4|
|5||Freddy Dash||Brooke Campbell||53.7|
|Fiber Fresh CCI 1* Championship|
|1||In Disguise||Clarke Johnstone||43.4|
|2||Ricker Ridge Sooty GNZ||Samantha Felton||44|
|3||Astek Guardsman||Chanel Campbell||44.8|
|5||Gina VT Bloemenhof||Alex Anderson||47|
|Wairakei CCN105 Championship|
|1||Overnight Success||Dannie Lodder||27.1|
|2||HNS Chrialka Gienah||Bryar Kirkeby||31.2|
|3||DSE Sunset Pass||Donna Edwards-Smith||31.5|
|5||Good Timing||Amanda ‘Muzi’ Pottinger||32.6|
|1||Angus Blue||Jonathan Paget||42.5|
|2||Spring Panorama||Andrew Daines||60.4|
|3||Ricker Ridge Pico Boo||Samantha Felton||65.4|
|4||Just de Manzana||Jessica Woods||65.5|
|5||Rubinstar HH||Renee Faulkner||65.8|
|AMS Saddlery CCI 1* Open|
|1||Meersbrook Viva La Vida||Jordie Watson||42.1|
|5||Arctic Cielo||Elise Power||49.4|
|Equissage CCN105 Open|
- Shevchenko – Eloise King – 25.1
- RM Limbo – Jeffrey Amon – 25.6
- My Silver Lining – Jeffrey Amon – 28.9
- Diamond Trade – Amanda Wards – 30.2
- Valkyrie II – Anna Robertson – 30.4