Steffi Whittaker’s late entry aboard On the Point Eve in the Equissage Horse Grand Prix at Equidays paid big dividends for the 18-year-old South Islander.
Steffi and the mare were one of just two clears from the 12 starters in the opening round and their double clear sealed the win. “I was so excited,” said Whittaker, who hails from Christchurch but is spending three weeks in the north at shows. “It was our first grand prix start together.”
Steffi has only had the 13-year-old for just over a month after falling in love with her while working at Katie Laurie’s Australian base over the winter. “Mum looked at Eve’s breeding and we thought she would be a good foundation mare to breed with Eros K.”
The rest is history. However, Steffi was a little unsure about starting in the indoor arena for the grand prix at Equidays. “I haven’t competed in an indoor since I was on my pony at Manfeild and we don’t have many at home.”
However, she needn’t have worried. “The track was really nice, and it was a tight arena with lots of people, so it was exciting to be in there.”
Steffi is full of love for her new horse. “She is so cool, and I just love riding her.” She and Eve were also second by .48 of a second in the FMG Young Rider class. The plan is to head home after Masterton and take some embryos.
Logan Massie (Dannevirke) and Intellect were the only other combination to come through to the jump-off, but he had a stop early in the course before retiring. The remainder of the top six were all on four faults apiece.
In the Country TV Pony Grand Prix it was double clears for the top three with the solid partnership of Emma Watson (Morrinsville) and Maddox Fun House the quickest home to take the honours. Emma and the former Pony of the Year stopped the clock at 33.63 seconds, with runner-up Parys Marshall (New Plymouth) aboard Spot You Later home in 35.4 and Brooke Hawthorne (Cambridge) on East As a smidgen later in 35.41.
Equissage Horse Grand Prix Series: Steffi Whittaker (Christchurch) On the Point Eve 1, Logan Massie (Dannevirke) Intellect 2, Tom Tarver (Kawerau) Popeye 3, Harry Feast (West Melton) Double J Bouncer 4, Amanda Wilson (Hikurangi) Showtym Cassanova 5, Clarke Johnstone (Matangi) Quainton Labyrinth 6.
Country TV Pony Grand Prix Series: Emma Watson (Morrinsville) Maddox Fun House 1, Parys Marshall (New Plymouth) Spot You Later 2, Brooke Hawthorne (Cambridge) Easy As 3, Tyla Hackett (Waiuku) The Dreamer 4, Rylee Sheehan (Te Aroha) Tony the Pony 5, Karis Spurway (New Plymouth) Kabo Cappesh 6.
FMG Young Rider Series: Sharnaye Lammers (Hikurangi) Shakespear NZPH 1, Steffi Whittaker (Christchurch) On the Point Eve 2, Olivia Dalton (Karaka) Cil Dara Bonaparte 3, Tyla Hackett (Waiuku) Gin 4, Laura Hilhorst (Hamilton) LC Underberg 5, Anneke van Rooyen (Taumarunui) Old King Cole 6
Dunstan Horsefeeds and EquiFibre Pro-Am Rider Series: Elle Phillips (Hamilton) Aria GNZ 1, Christine Cornege (Cambridge) Varekai SL 2, Emma Gaze (Ohaupo) Kowhai Bug 3, Rosie Commons (Auckland) Athena GNZ 4, Emma Gaze (Ohaupo) Firebug 5, Lizzie Green (Hamilton) Rubix RE 6.
Hinterland Amateur Rider Series: Paxton Condor (Hamilton) La Fonteyn 1, Kelsey Leahy (Cambridge) Showcause 2, Fleur Butler (Katikati) Amarula MVNZ 3, Scott Borland (Te Awamutu) SB Attitude 4, Loran Mathis (Putaruru) Out Done 5, Charlotte McGregor (Cambridge) LC Lin D’or 6.
Dunstan Horsefeeds and EquiFibre Junior Rider Series: Jessica Collinson (Auckland) Bunny Hop 1, Emma Watson (Morrinsville) Maddox Kiwi Silverkee 2, Olivia Newson (Tauranga) Caretino Jewel 3, Samantha Carrington (Takapau) Double J Breeze On 4, Ciel Butler (Katikati) Kiwi Ridge 5, Parys Marshall (New Plymouth) Kiwi Jet 6.
East Coast Performance Horses Five-Year-Old Series: Vicki Prendergast (Matamata) Shawnee ECPH 1, Rose Alfeld (Christchurch) Eye Catcher NZPH 2.
Mitavite Speedi-Beet Six-Year-Old Series: Amanda Wilson (Hikurangi) Quintesse Z TWS, Parys Marshall (New Plymouth) Whata Balou, Logan Massie (Dannevirke) Double J Kelvin, Jeremy Whale (Cambridge) Dolce NZPH, Melody Matheson (Hastings) Enya MH, Oliver Croucher (Cambridge) Scotsmans Valley and Vicki Wilson (Hawke’s Bay) Daminos TWS =1.
Matthews Hanoverians Seven-Year-Old Series: Samantha Peters (Whangarei) Cadillac NZPH 1, Rose Alfeld (Leeston) Cadenza NZPH 2, Lizzie Green (Hamilton) Charcoal Xtreme 3, Jesse Linton (Hastings) Caption NZPH 4, Lucy Olphert (Tauranga) Little Houdini 5, Rachel Malcolm (Cambridge) Mont Carlo MVNZ 6
Premier Derby 1.35m: Sam Felton (Matangi) Ricker Ridge Divine Right 1, Sam Felton (Matangi) Ricker Ridge Rui 2, Amanda Illston (Auckland) Verdelho 3, Nick Brooks (Cambridge) Versace C 4, Catherine Cleghorn (Cambridge) My Distraction 5, Elle Phillips (Hamilton) Railbeart Bruis 6.
FEI World Challenge Category A: Christine Cornege (Cambridge) Varekai SL 1, Amanda Wilson (Hikurangi) Showtym Burrow 2, Emma Gaze (Ohaupo) Woodland Bug 3, Laura Hilhorst (Hamilton) LC Underbug 4, Mikayla Herbert (Rotorua) Snow Storm 5, Colleen Crous (Auckland) Orames Girl VDL 6, Amanda Illston (Auckland) Verdelho 7.
October 15, 2018
By Diana Dobson