Australia have completed the double taking out the Oceania Teams’ senior crown at the New Zealand Three Day Event Championships in Taupo this afternoon. Australia Gold won the clash, 118.2 penalty points ahead of New Zealand Black, with New Zealand Silver in third and Australia Green fourth.

A huge factor in the biennial clash was the testing of the new Olympic format which saw New Zealand pick up a 200 point penalty when Samantha Lissington (Matangi) and Ricker Ridge Rui fell on the cross country and an additional 20 penalties when the team had to bring in reserve Bundy Philpott (Cambridge) and Tresca NZPH.

“When you read the rules around the new format it makes sense regarding penalties but you don’t understand the impact until you go through the process,” said Jock Paget, chef d’equipe for the New Zealand Black team. “It brought a couple of key things to the surface, you just need to work it out. Having a chance to do it here has been so valuable. If the competition had been run under the usual criteria, we would have won both the young rider and senior.”

Jock had plenty of praise for his riders saying every opportunity he gets to work with them in high pressure situations strengthens the group. “I am proud of all for how they have done the job.”

The stand-outs for him were Madison Crowe (Matangi) aboard Waitangi Pinterest who had ridden off with the DVS Home Ventilation CCI4*-L National Championship title with defending champ Amanda Pottinger (Havelock) and Just Kidding in second on countback to the optimum cross country time. “They are good for each other and I look forward to many more clashes between them.”

Australian chef d’equipe Stuart Tinney also heaped praise on his riders and support crews. “The logistics of flying 12 horses here is huge,” said Stuart. “It was wonderful for everyone to trial the Olympic format – that’s been a huge success. It’s about everyone getting their heads around how it will all work.

“We had two very good teams and I thought both would be competitive – it’s good to win.”

New Zealand Silver chef d’equipe Penny Castle also reiterated there would be plenty of learning to come from the Olympic format test. “It’s been a good competition and individually some excellent results,” said Penny. “Some were quite phenomenal. There will be a lot to be talked about and studying of the information gleaned from the Olympic format test and how we will use it moving forward.”

She’s already looking forward to the next Oceania clash which will be held in Australia in 2021.

Results –

Oceania Teams’ Senior Competition: Australia Gold (Shane Rose/Ultimate Velocity 60.2, Sonja Johnson/Misty Isle Valentino 53.4, Emma Bishop/CP Issey Miyake 93.7 and Jessica Rae/Rascal reserve) 207.3 penalty points 1, New Zealand Black (Madison Crowe/Waitangi Pinterest 34, Amanda Pottinger/Just Kidding32.8, Samantha Lissington/Ricker Ridge Rui 234.7 – substituted, and Bundy Philpott/Tresca NZPH reserve 24) 325.5 penalty points 2, New Zealand Silver (Abigail Long/Enzo 243.8, Renee Faulkner/Rubinstar HH 64.7, Monica Oakley/Acrobat 56.2 and Jackson Bovill/Visionnaire reserve) 364.7 penalty points 3, Australia Green (Emma Mason/Warrego Marco Polo 235.4, Jade Findlay/Oaks Cordelia 147.7, Amanda Ross/Dicavalli Diesel 328.3 and Madeline Wilson/I’M Bruce reserve) 711.4 penalty points 4.