Showing’s big guns

It was the saddle hunters’ time to shine in the main ring at the Land Rover Horse of the Year showing arena yesterday.

Harriet Redmond and Ngahiwi Frostie, Saddle Hunter of the Year (Annie Studholme)

Former eventer Ngahiwi Frostie, in the hands of Ashburton’s Harriet Redmond, went one better than his reserve place last year, securing the Saddle Hunter of the Year title class.

Harriet, a registered nurse, has been riding the gorgeous 11-year-old stationbred gelding by Grey Indoctro for just two seasons. The horse had previously evented to Intermediate level with Emily Cammock. “I can’t believe it. I wasn’t expecting it. I just wanted him to go out there and go well,” Harriet says.

Rebecca Aplin was reserve on Sherlock.

Sophia Donnelly and Limitless won the Paced & Mannered Saddle Hunter Horse of the Year, while honours in the Rising Star section went to Christchurch’s Taylor Burnett on the super-impressive Questionable, who will certainly be one to watch out for in future years in the open title class.

Sophia Donnelly and Limitless, P&M Saddle Hunter of the Year (Annie Studholme)
Sophia Donnelly and Limitless (Annie Studholme)

Saddle hunter ponies

The ultra-consistent Nanteos Autumn Guardsman defended his title in the Small Saddle Hunter Pony of the Year, with Brooke Cadwallader again in the saddle, and also won the Paced & Mannered Small Saddle Hunter. Reserve in the title class was Lillie Wallace and Pied Piper Top Shelf.

Brooke Cadwallader and Small Saddle Hunter Pony of the Year winner Nanteos Autumn Guardsman (Annie Studholme)

The Medium Saddle Hunter Pony of the Year title and the inaugural Pip Taylor Memorial Trophy went to a “very surprised” Ruby Norton-Collins (11), aboard the lovely Ashbrooke Bracken, with reserve to Sophie Pickens and Up The Tempo.

Ruby Norton-Collins and Medium Saddle Hunter Pony of the Year, Ashbrooke Bracken (Annie Studholme)

There were tears of joy for Auckland’s Paris Masterton (15), who put in a fantastic work-out to seal the Large Saddle Pony of the Year title class on KS Rose D’Or, capping off an incredible season for the pair. “She’s been placed every year we have entered, so to win it is such a thrill,” says Paris.

Paris Masterton and KS Rose D’Or, Large Saddle Hunter Pony of the Year (Annie Studholme)

Reserve went to Noah Murphy and Windermere In Memory.

Lead-rein and First Ridden

With an magnificent line-up of 16 combinations, the judges in the lead-rein section certainly had their work cut out. After much deliberation, they awarded the Lead Rein Pony of the Year title to Alexia Thomas (8), riding the outstanding seven-year-old Springdale Bee Mine Tonight.

Lead-rein Pony of the Year winner Springdale Bee Mine Tonight with Alexia Thomas (Annie Studholme)

The cute combination also finished runner-up in the Paced & Mannered Lead Rein title, behind Olive Cronin – all the way from Temuka – riding Cedar Park Regal Man.

The Lead Rein Pony Rider of the Year was won by Lucy Jackson on Ridgevale Oyster Bay.

Lucy Jackson won the Lead-rein Pony Rider of the Year (Annie Studholme)

Continuing their family’s astonishing record in the pony showing section, Mia Cadwallader added to Team Caddy’s title haul taking out both the First Ridden Pony Rider of the Year and First Ridden Pony of the Year on the super palomino gelding, Leeara Park First Edition.

First Ridden Pony of the Year Leeara Park First Edition, with Mia Cadwallader (Annie Studholme)

Zaria Johnston and Merivale Park Opening Night took out the First Ridden Paced & Mannered Pony of the Year title.