The nation’s best onshore based eventers head to Taupo this week for the much-anticipated New Zealand Three Day Event Championships, this time incorporating the biennial Oceania Team’s Championship.
Australia is sending their largest contingent to New Zealand for the Oceania Champs with their sights set on not only winning the clash but also testing the new Olympic format.
The last time New Zealand and Australia went head-to-head in the Oceania Championships was in Melbourne in 2017 where the Kiwis came home with the spoils. However, both countries have named very strong teams, so the competition is wide open for the taking.
New Zealand’s senior riders – Amanda Pottinger (Havelock North) aboard Just Kidding, Samantha Lissington (Matangi) aboard either Ricker Ridge Rui or Ricker Ridge Escada, Jackson Bovill (Cambridge) on Visionnaire, Abigail Long (Levin) with Enzo, Renee Faulkner (Papakura) on Rubinstar HH, Bundy Philpott (Cambridge) on Tresca NZPH, Monica Oakley (Karaka) on Acrobat and Madison Crowe (Matangi) on Waitangi Pinterest – will be split into two teams which will be named after Thursday morning’s first horse inspection.
Amanda will be chasing back-to-back wins in the DVS Home Ventilation CCI4*-L championship while Samantha, the current national One Day Champion will be looking to add the Wills Trophy to her? cabinet before heading to the UK. Olympian Jock Paget (Taupo), who captained the previous Oceania team, is chef d’equipe for one team with dressage specialist coach Penny Castle charged with the second senior crew.
The Australian senior teams include Olympic team silver medalist and multi Australian Event Rider of the Year, Sonja Johnson on Misty Isle Valentino, along with her silver medal-winning teammate Shane Rose on Ultimate Velocity. Shane also won a team bronze at the 2016 Olympic Games, is a two-time winner of the CCI5*-L at Adelaide and five-time winner of the Best and Fairest Australian Eventing Rider Award.
At Taupo, the CCI4*-L class has attracted 23 entries, including the four Oceania senior teams. The young rider clash is being run as part of the NRM CCI3*-L class which has 40 on the card, including the two teams.
The New Zealand Young Rider team has been named and comprises Vicky Browne-Cole (Waiuku) on Cutting Edge, Beth Wilson (Papakura) on Alto et Audax and Lucy Turner (Christchurch) aboard Astek Victor, with Katrina Butler-Gallie (Hunua) on Tarndale Endeavour the alternate/substitute. Anne-Marie Styles is the chef d’equipe.
The Fiber Fresh CCI2*-L is another big class, with 47 entries, while the Wairakei Resort CCN1*-L has 28 entered. The Stirling Collection CCN2*-L Open and Taupo Veterinary Centre CCN105-L Open have both attracted healthy fields. Riders are coming from all over New Zealand to compete at the most prestigious three day championship event, which is being held at the National Equestrian Centre.
Competition gets underway on Wednesday with the Southern Lakes Tartan National Young Horse Championship with the first horse inspection for the three day championship classes on Thursday morning. Dressage will follow through Thursday and Friday with the cross country on Saturday and culminating with the showjumping on Sunday.
Parts of the champs will be livestreamed on www.equestrianlive.co.nz. The CCI4*-L dressage will stream on Friday, cross country from the CCI2*-L, CCI3*-L, and CCI4*-L on Saturday and the CCI3*-L and CCI4*-L showjumping on Sunday.
The event is also the grand finale of the six season-long ESNZ Eventing Series. While some have already been won, others are a tightly-fought tussle to the end, especially with extra points on the line at the champs.
WHAT: New Zealand Three Day Event Championships incorporating the Oceania Teams’ Championship
WHEN: May 9-12, 2019
WHERE: National Equestrian Centre, 114 Rapids Road, Taupo
INFO: https://www.nzequestrian.org.nz/disciplines/eventing/national-three-day-event-championships/ or follow us on Facebook at ESNZ Eventing