Only Friday and already great results!

James Avery rides Vitali into the lead of the CCI2*7YO at the Mondial du Lion FEI WBFSH World Breeding Eventing Championship for Young Horses. (Image: Libby Law Photography)

A great start to the Mondial du Lion Young Horse Championship in France on the first day of competition, with James Avery and Vitali hitting the lead in the seven-year-old class. James, originally from Canterbury where he worked mainly as a farrier, has certainly been impressing with his dressage on this lovely young horse.

Kisses from Jess for Vitali (Image: Libby Law Photography)

James and Vitali were the last combination for the day. His score of 42 puts him ahead of legendary Mary King on King Robert (by Chilli Morning who Mary used to ride!). The pair are second on 44.3.  Still to come in that class tomorrow for NZ are Andrew Nicholson on Yacabo BK and Dan Jocelyn on Fjury.

Andrew Nicholson and As Is (Image: Libby Law Photography)

In the six-year-old class, Dan competed on Lissyegan Rory in the dressage phase, scoring 50.9.  Andrew also As Is in that competition and the pair are currently in sixth place on 45.8.  The class is being led by Izzy Taylor, on Monkeying Around who scored 37.6.  Still to come (tomorrow) in that class is Jesse Campbell with I Spye.

Dan Jocelyn and Lissyegan Rory (Image: Libby Law Photography)

Meanwhile, back in New Zealand, Katie Laurie made a welcome return to compete in the first round of the NZ World Cup Series on Breeze, who has been prepared here by her parents and Tash Brooks.

Kate was over the moon with the win. She and Breeze headed home a quality 17-strong field in the Bayleys Real Estate New Zealand League World Cup jumping qualifier at the Hawke’s Bay Royal A&P Show over a challenging Roger Laplanche-designed course.

I am the most excited I have ever been to win a World Cup,” said Katie, who is now based in Australia. “It has been such an amazing effort by so many to get Breeze here. She was such a good girl out there. She tried her little heart out”

And as gutsy as today’s win was, Katie announced the retirement of the 12-year-old bay mare, who has been competing in World Cups since late 2014.

We have been talking about it and decided this would be her last start, regardless of what she did,” she said. She breeds good babies.”

The combination had an unlucky rail in the first round, leaving Katie to nurse her around the second, but still going fast enough to push the front of the pack.

The opening round of the class saw clears from Lucy Fell aboard her 19-year-old former racehorse Tinapai, and Rose Alfeld on My Super Nova.

Five combinations sat on four faults – Katie and Breeze, Brooke Edgecombe and LT Holst Andrea, Clarke Johnstone and Quainton Labyrinth, Samantha Morrison and Biarritz and Lily Tootill with Ulysses NZPH.

Eleven combinations – those with eight faults and less – came back for the second round, where clears came from Katie and Brooke Edgecombe.

Lily, Clarke and Rose each added four to their tallies, with the final placings decided on time.

Katie and Breeze took the win, with Rose, unlucky to drop the very last fence, finishing second, Brooke Edgecombe third, Sam Morrison fourth, Lily Tootill fifth andClarke Johnstone, on début at World Cup show jumping level, sixth.

It was a great all-round show for the McVean-Laurie truck. Katie’s niece Lucy Browne was ecstatic to win her first show jumping class, the pony 85cm, aboard Awhero Awatea Idaho.

In the Country TV Pony Grand Prix, Emma Watson and Maddox Fun House jumped the only double clear to take the win.

Ruby Mason, who finished third in the Pony Grand Prix with Mr Acho, took the honours in the FEI World Jumping Challenge Category A on Peggy Blue.

Ally Carson and Sir Gandolf won the Category B Challenge, and Ally was also sixth in the Pony Grand Prix aboard Tony the Pony.

Results –

Bayleys Real Estate Hawke’s Bay Championship – FEI World Cup Qualifier: Katie Laurie (Mystery Creek) Breeze 1, Rose Alfeld (Leeston) My Super Nova 2, Brooke Edgecombe (Waipukurau) LT Holst Andrea 3, Samantha Morrison (Tauranga) Biarritz 4, Lily Tootill (Karaka) Ulysses NZPH 5, Clarke Johnstone (Matangi) Quainton Labyrinth 6.

Country TV Pony Grand Prix: Emma Watson (Morrinsville) Maddox Fun House 1, Phoebe Burns (Hastings) Galaxy Masterpiece 2, Ruby Mason (Napier) Mr Acho 3, Brett Horsburgh (Cambridge) Showtym Endeavour 4, Tyla Hackett (Waiuku) The Dreamer 5, Ally Carson (Putaruru) Tony the Pony 6.

FEI World Jumping Challenge – category A: Ruby Mason (Napier) Peggy Blue 1, Tyla Hackett (Waiuku) Gin 2, Leeshelle Small (Auckland) AMS Ajaccio NZPH 3, Olivia Dalton (Coatsville) Bling du Rouet 4, Vicki Ridley (Auckland) Mosaic II 5, Sarah West (Matamata) Erl Grey 6.

FEI World Jumping Challenge – category B: Ally Carson (Putaruru) Sir Gandolf 1, Molly Prenter (Havelock North) Wenrose Vertigo 2, Deanna Horsburgh (Cambridge) Smoken Up 3, Matilda Shotter-Davies (Auckland) CentaRoc 4, Rebecca Porter (Hastings) Mr Harrison 5, Danielle Maurer (Auckland) Henton Exchequer 6.

FMG Young Rider Series: Briar Burnett-Grant (Taupo) Fiber Fresh Veroana 1, Emily Hayward (Te Awamutu) Yandoo Lady Gold 2, Oliver Croucher (Rotorua) Waitangi Surf 3, Leeshelle Small (Auckland) AMS Ajaccio NZPH 4, Leeshelle Small (Auckland) Pasir Ris 88 5, Elise Stables (Morrinsville) SE Rumour Has It 6.

Dunstan Horsefeeds and Equifibre Pro Amateur Rider: Karen Riddle (Rotorua) LC Talent 1, Tracy Mason (Napier) WP Stella 2, Siobhan Ryan (Wainuiomata) Rosco 3, Kathryn Alabaster (Pahiatua) Cricklewood Bano 4, Sally Clark (Dannevirke) Argio 5, Kathryn Alabaster (Pahiatua) La Luna Rossa 6.

Caledonian Holdings Amateur Rider Series: Jacqui Symes (Waipukurau) Double J Recall 1, Lisa Walker (Gisborne) Miss Serendipity 2, Graeme Isaacson (Waipukurau) Fareal 3, Emma Deadman (Taupo) Avichii AF 4, Sophie Williams (Havelock North) Benedict 5, Kelly Stevens (Auckland) DiCaprio Blue 6.

Dunstan Horsefeeds and Equifibre Junior Rider Series: Sinead Dolman (Gisborne) Kiwi Lansing 1, Emma Watson (Morrinsville) Maddox Kiwi Silverkee 2, Sarah West (Matamata) Erl Grey 3, Emelia Forsyth (Clevedon) Joia Hara 4, Ally Carson (Putaruru) Letano 5, Sarah McKinnon (Wairoa) Matilda II 6.

Purepine Shavings Seven-Year-Old Series: Lucy Fell (Longburn) Faratona STS 1, Robert Steele (Dannevirke) Delta Blue 2, Duncan McFarlane (Taupo) Be Mine NZPH 3, Leeshelle Small (Auckland) AMS Mr Muscles, Rose Alfeld (Leeston) KBS The Irishman 5, Julie Davey (Hastings) JD Ruby 6.

Mitavite Six-Year-Old Series: Rose Alfeld (Leeston) Cadenza NZPH, Samantha Peters (Whangarei) Cadillac NZPH, Heloise Tolo (Wellington) Can’t Touch This NZPH, Jesse Linton (Hastings) Caption NZPH, Katie Laurie (Mystery Creek) McCaw MVNZ, Simon Wilson (Waipukurau) McMillans Whimsical WDS and Robert Steele (Dannevirke) Two Eye See =1.

East Coast Performance Horses Five-Year-Old Series: Sarah McKinnon (Wairoa) Dakota II, Logan Massie (Dannevirke) Double J Kelvin and Kim Best (Maraekakaho) LT Holst Teacher’s Pet =1.