The Bates NZ National Dressage Championships got off to a strong start at NEC Taupo today, with the first competitors trotting up their respective centrelines at 8am sharp. Competition included the Eye Opener and Super 5 League classes for L1, 2 and 3, along with Round One of the Webb Equestrian Para Equestrian Champs.  

The Elite Equine Nutrition Young Dressage Horse classes were also held today, with one test each for 4-, 5- and 6-year old horses. Rochelle Speirs took out the 4-yr-old on her brown gelding Feuer Tanz (by HP Fresco, bred by Gillian Booth). The 5-yr-old went to Susan Tomlin, riding Dance Hit SW, bred by Sterling Warmbloods and by the outstanding Hanoverian stallion Danciano. The judges awarded him 85.2% for his test.

Four horses lined up for the 6-yr-old title: Vanessa Way and the stunning NSC Furst Rock DW led the way, very nearly cracking into the nineties with a whopping 89.4 score, and winning with a margin of over 13%. Furst Rock is by Furst Romancier OLD, and bred by David Woolley.

Full results Thurs 19 Nov

Tomorrow sees the Amateur and Open competitions begin, along with the Custom Logistics Services Prix St Georges, Andrea Raves FEI Inter B, and the Superior Rubber Surfaces FEI Grand Prix.