A tough day at Taupo

Wet, wet, wet but still some great performances.

Amanda Pottinger, Just Kidding, retained their lead after cross country in the NRM CCI3*

The weather and the course took its toll at Taupo today in the NRM CCI3* class but dressage leaders, Amanda Pottinger and Just Kidding have kept their lead after doing a cracking round over the Chris Ross designed course.

Amanda was clear and recorded the fastest time, incurring just 3.2 time faults and was buzzing for some time afterwards. “He was phenomenal, he knew his job everywhere and knew exactly what I was asking, he listened, he went when I said go, and he waited when I asked,” she said. “I did have a little life way out the back at that angled brush off the sunken road. I went straight through. He added another stride at the last minute but it was just because he didn’t actually understand the questions to start with but I got him over it and he was great.”

The weather had held out for most of the morning but by the time the three-star class started, it was chucking it down. Amanda found the ground tough going to start with. “The main arena (early in the course) was probably the most awful ground, they really felt like they were clambering. I was very nervous that the whole track would feel like that but luckily the middle third was great, it was good ground.”

Amanda Pottinger, Just Kidding on a mission

Amanda wasn’t too worried about incurring a few time faults. “I was too excited to look at my watch as I went through the flags. I was on my first three minutes which was a first for me, and that was a big one for me.  I lost a bit of time at the water, but he jumped in super. I got a bit behind time but then made up time at the end, but in these conditions, I am absolutely rapt.”

Nick Brooks was positively beaming as he went through the finish flags on For Fame, and is in second place as a result of such a good round, with just 6.4 time faults on the pair’s first ever CCI3*.

Nick Brooks, For Fame – Nick was rapt with his round

Nick couldn’t talk highly enough of his horse afterwards. “He’s amazing. He is such an athlete, he blows my mind. So scopey, he never ever questions anything ever and he just makes it feel as if he has walked the course himself. I took the long route at the end, as at those angled brushes, I would have just been so outraged if I had of had a 20 that close to home when there was an option. It didn’t waste too much time. Through some of those tough combinations, I was conservative on giving myself enough time to set up so I probably lost a bit of time there. I couldn’t be happier.”

Nick Brooks, For Fame flying over one of the early combinations

Jessica Woods also looked really good on course on her scopey mare, Just de Manzana and the pair are now sitting in third, having added 13.2 time penalties to their dressage score. “I was so stoked, she jumped like a machine. She was still full of opinions at the end. I took a circle at the splash, she kind of left a leg but was all OK.”

Andrew Scott, Jessica’s jumping trainer was on hand to congratulate his pupil at the finish line. He said that he had given her a bit of advice pre-start of what he thought was a really good three-star – perhaps even harder than a couple of four-star courses that he has seen in the past. “We talked a lot about keeping the horse balanced on the turns because horses don’t mind slipping going straight ahead but they hate slipping sideways. So I told her to keep focused and concentrate the whole way round.”

Jessica Woods, Just de Manzana jumping well in the heavy rain

One who definitely concentrated all the way around was Matthew Grayling, riding like he was in his twenties still on Winkey Foley’s relatively inexperienced grey horse, NRM Trudeau. The pair are in fifth place after cross country. “We were a little slower than I originally planned but I took an option down at the ditch to the angled hedge. We were quite slow there by the time we had circled around and got going again, but being a new horse to me and green, I just didn’t want to take the risk. He had a bad jump two jumps previously where he stumbled down onto his face, but full credit to him, he just picked up and went again.”

Matthew took the direct and fastest route through the difficult angled brush combination towards the end of the course. “He nailed them beautifully, he just couldn’t have been more perfect. He went down the hill beautifully down to the two skinnies, and jumped into the splash pond well, and perhaps it was a bit of a bold jump into the first water, a bit wild. I just have to learn to go a bit quicker now.”

NRM Trudeau lost three shoes on course, so did well to stay on his feet in these conditions. “I can’t complain because I shod him, as my farrier was in Australia,” Matthew confessed.

Matthew Grayling, NRM Trudeau with his shoe still on at that point!

Bundy Philpott and Tresca NZPH are in fourth place and looked very good on course. She was another one very pleased with her horse’s performance. “He jumped amazing, he tried his heart out. He looked for the flags everywhere. Chris struck the tone right, it was a really big ask for us today but some really good horses have stepped up and jumped clear rounds. I did’t push him for the time too much, down to the ground and also finding out way through a few new combinations.”

Bundy Philpott, Tresca NZPH – impressive scope!

Kate Fleming and Mendelsshon have risen up to seventh place after a good showing on course today. She was sporting a gash on her nose which she incurred at the water jump. “I almost fell off at the water, but he just stopped and let me climb back on and then we kept going. I was slow but he jumped really well.”

Kate was another one to lose a shoe on course. “He lost a front shoe early on in the course so slipped a bit but he was amazing. He loved it. I loved it too. It was the biggest course we have ever done, well and truly. He is an amazing boy.”

Kate Fleming and Mendelsshon missing one front shoe already at Fence 5!

Corey Wood was well pleased with his round on Pick Up Line. “He was so good, he tried. He just didn’t lock on to that second corner at Fence 7, but then he realised and he wanted to have a go! Let me at it, but no, no, it was too late. He tried his heart out, it was a tricky course, everything came up so quickly. The ground was pretty slippery and we had a couple of moments, he is just so brave and genuine. After the run out, I did just cruise a bit but I completed and that was all I wanted to do.”

Samantha Felton mainly had a good day, emerging the leader of both the Bates CC12* championship and also the Fiber Fresh CCI1* class, then having a fall with Ricker Ridge Divine right in the three-star, followed by 20 penalties plus time on Ricker Ridge Rui, but finished the class with a superb round on Ricker Ridge Escada to be in 6th place.

She was the last competitor in the three-star to go through the finish flags, and even though she had ridden all those horses she was still helping her team attend to Escada.

“I was really really happy with him. I did take one option at the coffin complex. Earlier I tried it straight through on my mare and she didn’t read it. I was nervous that even on my best horse it didn’t present in a way that was obvious to the horse so I decided to just play it safe there.”

Asked if she was exhausted after such a busy day, she said she will be. “I am high on adrenaline right now, and then I will be dead but will rise again tomorrow.”

Samantha Felton, Ricker RIdge Escada over the last – the Barbara Thompson Camera jump

Emily Cammock elected to withdraw Shaw Lee prior to the cross country. The horse had been kicked a couple of weeks ago and was battling to stay sound as a result. She is aiming to take him to Adelaide later in the year. “It would have been great to have a run over such a good course, but it is just not worth risking him when he isn’t 100%.”

Donna Edwards-Smith had no luck in the three-star, having a fall on DSE Cluny and then pulling DSE Tangolooma up with the horse obviously not feeling right for Donna. She also had a fall in the two-star class on Astek Guardsman. She is 7th in the CCN105 Championship on DSE Presley.

Other results are below, along with our extensive gallery of the other championship classes, photos thanks to Jane Thompson, Pegasus Communications.

NRM CCI3* Championship
1 Amanda ‘Muzi’ Pottinger Just Kidding 32.4
2 Nick Brooks For Fame 37.9
3 Jessica Woods Just de Manzana 49.8
4 Bundy Philpott Tresca NZPH 54.3
5 Matthew Grayling NRM Trudeau 57.8
6 Samantha Felton Ricker Ridge Escada 70.4
7 Kate Fleming Mendelsshon 98
8 Corey Wood Pick Up Line 98.1
9 Samantha Felton Ricker Ridge Rui 100.7
10 Diane Gilder Your Attorney 269.8
Bates CCI2* Championship 2*
1 Samantha Felton Ricker Ridge Sooty GNZ 28.1
2 Angela Lloyd Lyrical 30.2
3 Bryce Newman Bates Game Keeper 32.7
4 Lucy Turner Carbon 34.8
5 Beth Wilson Alto et Audax 36.4
6 Elise Power Arctic Cielo 36.9
7 Abbey Thompson Rockin It 41.5
8 Rachel Cave Figurato 43.2
9 Abby Lawrence Anonymous 54.4
10 Samuel Amon Trojan Warrior 57.6
Fiber Fresh CCI1* Championship
1 Samantha Felton Ricker Ridge Riley 30
2 Christen Lane Henton Armada 31.5
3 Courtney Davis Dunrobin Gancanagh 32
4 Samantha Mynott CHS Ripleys Dream 32.8
5 Jeffrey Amon JA Take a Shot 33.5
6 Ashleigh Mckinstry Pioneer Canny Lad 33.9
7 Bundy Philpott Shillings 34.3
8 Ashleigh Mckinstry Ngahiwi Makem 34.4
8 Amanda Illston Verdelho 34.4
10 Molli Thacker Happy Go Lucky 34.9
Wairakei Resort CCN105 Championship
1 Angela Lloyd Raucous 26.9
2 Kirsty Guilfoyle Ash Haven Diva 29.2
3 Lizzie Green Comanche II 30.2
4 Bryar Kirkeby HNS Chrialka Gienah 30.8
5 Jessica Woods Kings Soleil 31.4
6 Emily Cammock Antara 31.6
7 Donna Edwards-Smith DSE Presley 32.1
8 Georgie Dickson Tigerherz 32.8
9 Eliza Raven Forbes PSH 33.5
10 Sylvie Maclean RM Let It Be 33.8

AMS Saddlery CCI 1* Open

1 Megan Finlayson Greensleeves 34.7
2 Clay Harris All In Time 42.1
3 Denise Rushbrook Astek Gadzuks 42.9
4 Francesca Silver-Carter Case in Point 46.3
5 Niamh Rayne My Hallucination 48.6
6 Denise Rushbrook Wassup Gee 49.4
7 Fiona Fraser Xanthus III 50
8 Erica Alderton Orion Star 53.6
9 Holly Rose Pampero 57.2
10 Leasa Williamson Villaggio 59.7

Taupo Veterinary Centre CCN105 Open

1 LV Encostalot Jessica Woods 21
2 Noble Value Eden Doull 28.1
3 Telestory Caroline Howell 32
4 Oranoa Tobasco Graham Fox 32.8
5 Private Benjamin Louise Leonard 33.6
6 Illustrious Mitty Forsyth 35.9
7 Boogie Nights Emma Broughton-Watts 38
8 Lion Rock Abby Lawrence 38.8
9 Private Addition Glenda Thomson 39.5
10 Wild Card Laken Rose 40.7