Larina Dolman and Kiwi Lansing are back in the title-winning circle of HOY with a decisive victory in the Harrison Lane Pro-Amateur Rider of the Year class.
Riders made light work of the opening round of the Werner Deeg-designed course with 14 of the 29 starters coming through to the jump-off where clears were far more scarce. The first clear came seven combinations in when Paula Mussen (Pukekohe) and Déjà Vu NZPH opted for the steady option, stopping the clock at 61.03 seconds. It opened the door with a flurry of clean slates – first was Kirsten Worker (Clevedon) riding Melanie’s Choice who fairly flew into the last fence to finish clear in 49.39 seconds.
Then came Larina (Gisborne) and Kiwi Lansing, a combination who are known for their speed and ability, and they didn’t disappoint, slicing corners and galloping flat out into the last to take the lead in 47.37 seconds. Paxton Conder (Whatawhata) and La Fonteyn looked on track to snatch the win but had the last two down in her 43.94-second effort. The final clear of the jump-off came from Vicki Prendergast (Matamata) aboard Selena C who came home in 52.21 seconds.
But the day belonged to Larina, who does crop monitoring for PGG Wrightson. “It was challenging out there,” said the 22-year-old. “There were a lot of very good riders in front and behind me. We were all on our toes. I didn’t think this season he would step up to Pro-Amateur but he has proved everyone wrong and annihilated it out there.”
Her plan was to “got for it and hope for the best” “I knew he could do it if I didn’t muck it up.”
Larina bought the 15.1hh horse as a four-year-old and brought him carefully through the grades with a blinder in their seven-year-old year winning both the series and HOY crown. However, she took a break from jumping and her younger sister Sinead took the ride for two seasons. “It did me well to take that break,” she said.
Larina took back the ride at the end of last season, and she and Reggie, as he is known at home, headed back into the competition arena with vigour. “He is just one in a million horse,” she says. “I wish everyone could have a horse like him.”
The combination have already tied up the Pro-Amateur Series and have travelled the country chasing the points. She plans to keep him at Pro-Amateur level and continue to produce young horses. “I couldn’t ever sell him,” says Larina. “He is part of the family. I really couldn’t have asked for a better first hack.”
Harrison Lane Pro-Amateur Rider of the Year (part of the Harrison Lane Pro-Amateur Rider Series): Larina Dolman (Gisborne) Kiwi Lansing 1, Kirsten Worker (Clevedon) Melanie’s Choice 2, Vicki Prendergast (Matamata) Selena C 3, Paula Mussen (Pukekohe) Déjà Vu NZPH 4, Ash Hart (Hastings) Kiwi Showtime 5, Kim Best (Hastings) LT Holst Teacher’s Pet 6.
By Diana Dobson
March 12, 2020