Rylee Sheehan and Bandito NZPH en route to win the ESNZ Horse Grand Prix at the Ray Burmester Memorial Show 27-28 March.
Photo Credit: Hanah Comrie

Rylee Sheehan knew he had to do well today in the ESNZ Horse Grand Prix at the Ray Burmester Memorial Grand Prix Show at Woodhill Sands as he tussles for valuable points in the series.

He and 10-year-old Bandito NZPH are only in their first year at Grand Prix level but already have four victories to their credit and are sitting very handy for the series final.

“Every point counts at this stage,” says the 15-year-old from Te Arora. “It would be pretty cool to win a series.”

Everything went to plan for him today in the Giltrap Audi -sponsored class. “It was a kind track and the first round was really nice.”

He was last to go in the jump-off, following Samantha McIntosh (Cambridge) aboard Takapoto Alaid de Chez Nous and knowing all three head of him had gone clear. “I started (the jump-off) a little slow and then got to one of the last lines and just let him go. I think that is where we made up the time. I like to watch others go in the jump-off so I know what I have to do to win.”

Fifteen started the class with four coming back for the jump-off where Rylee’s 37.54 second effort edged out Samantha who stopped the clock at 40.43, with third place going to Tegan Fitzsimon (West Melton) aboard Windermere Cappuccino with their 42.04 second time.

Rylee and Bandito have been together just two seasons and have really clicked this season. “I think I have just grown up a bit and my riding is improving.”

Rylee Sheehan and Bandito NZPH watching on before their jump off in the ESNZ Horse Grand Prix at the Ray Burmester Memorial Show 27-28 March.
Photo Credit: Hanah Comrie

The combination were also second in the FMG Young Rider Series class yesterday, with Rylee also picking up third place with Tony the Pony in the Country TV Pony Grand Prix (sponsored by GJ Gardner Homes).

Fourteen started the Pony Grand Prix with just Keira Page (Mystery Creek) aboard the very in-form Redcliffs Colour Me In and Liv Teixeira (Kerikeri) on EB Esperanza going head-to-head in the jump-off.

Both kept their slates clean but Keira flew through the flags in 39.19 seconds, with Liv stopping the clock at 41.02.

The Ray Burmester Memorial Derby was won by Kate Hewlett (Kerikeri) and Capatino GNZ, backing up their victory in a similar class at Takapoto Estate Show Jumping last month. They headed home a 25-strong field and were one of just two clear rounds. Emily Watson (Cambridge) and Eye Opener were second.

Danielle Watts designed the courses in ring one, with Edward Bullock in ring two and Christine Bullock tasked with ring three.

The two-day show was run in memory of Ray Burmester, who died suddenly in February 2019. A master jeweller whose stunning handcrafted pieces are worn by many a person, Ray and his wife Jane have been major supporters of equestrian over many years. They have supported riders competing both on and offshore, sponsored classes and donated much sought-after prizes. Not long before Ray’s passing he volunteered his time and skills to build the toilet steps at Woodhill Sands.

Show Jumping Waitemata committee member Emma Buckingham says the group is very grateful to have had the Burmester’s support for so many years. “It continues today, with Jane an active member of the committee and an ongoing sponsor,” she said. “The entire team are incredibly proud to run this weekend’s event in loving memory of Ray who while never rode, loved the sport and horses.”


Results –

ESNZ Horse Grand Prix (sponsored by Giltrap Audi): Rylee Sheehan (Te Aroha) Bandito NZPH 1, Samantha McIntosh (Cambridge) Takapoto Alaid de Chez Nous 2, Tegan Fitzsimon (West Melton) Windermere Cappuccino 3, Paula Mussen (Pukekohe) Déjà vu NZPH 4, Georgia Bouzaid (Cambridge) AP Ninja 5, Oliver Croucher (Cambridge) Waitangi Surf 6.


Country TV Pony Grand Prix (sponsored by GJ Gardner Homes): Keira Page (Mystery Creek) Redcliffs Colour Me In 1, Liv Teixeira (Kerikeri) EB Esperanza 2, Rylee Sheehan (Te Aroha) Tony the Pony 3, Crystal Hackett (Waiuku) The Dreamer 4, Samantha-Lee Wakeling (Warkworth) BMW Renegade 5, Holly Richardson (Warkworth) Pacific Dream 6.


Dunstan Horsefeeds Amateur Rider Series: Kelly Chapman (Albany) Eye See Ruby 1, Shelley Bridgeman (Auckland) Oaks Vendetta 2, Carolyn Hooton (Matamata) Waitangi Chrome 3, Jeremy Clark (Cambridge) Dynavyte Cancion HSH 4, Jessica Trow (Auckland) Kiwi Sunup 5, Ashley Johnston (Whangarei) Miss Vee NZPH 6.


Mainland Coachwork Junior Rider Series (sponsored by Burnetts Transport): Sophia Blackbourn (Cambridge) Octavia MVNZ 1, Mikayla Trott (Auckland) Redcliffs Armani RF 2, Aleisha Bradly (Manawahe) Caprio 3, Sophia Maud (Okura) Soho 4, Chloe Leggott (Whangarei) Paint me a Picture 5, Rose Windross (Auckland) Double J Kelvin 6.


FMG Young Rider Series (sponsored by Vodanovich Law): Georgia Milner (Auckland) Oaks Chifley 1, Rylee Sheehan (Te Aroha) Bandito NZPH 2, Colleen Crous (Auckland) Orames Girl VDL 3, Jordyn Appleton (Kumeu) Scotsman’s Valley 4, Sarah West (Te Aroha) Oaks Centurian 5, Natalia Lammers (Whangarei) Absolute NZPH 6.


Harrison Lane Pro-Amateur Rider Series (sponsored by Skeates Contractors): Michelle Wakeling (Warkworth) BMW Chaccolilli 1, Rosanna Dickson (Cambridge) DSE Exuberance 2, India Causebrook (Pukekohe) LC Telepathy 3, Olivia Forster (Cambridge) Cassino du Domaine 4, Georgia Lawrie (Kumeu) Cartello GNZ 5, Joanna Bullock (Ahuroa) Weiti Chevrolet 6.


Ray Burmester Memorial Derby: Kate Hewlett (Kerikeri) Capatino GNZ 1, Emily Watson (Cambridge) Eye Opener 2, Isabelle Jameson (Northland) Pacific All Class 3, Natalia Lammers (Whangarei) Absolute NZPH 4, Sally Steiner (Tauranga) Lord Rendition WS 5, Emma Buckingham (Waitemata) Piccadilly Circus 6.


Horse Grand Prix Super Series Final: Georgia Bouzaid (Cambridge) AP Ninja 1, Samantha McIntosh (Cambridge) Takapoto Malarkey 2, Glen Beal (Pukekohe) All Expenses of Renton 3, Paula Mussen (Pukekohe) Déjà vu NZPH 4, Tegan Fitzsimon (West Melton) Windermere Cappuccino 5, Emily Hayward (Te Awamutu) Centino 6.


Pony Grand Prix Super Series Final: Isabelle Hawkins (Auckland) Te Urewera Magic 1, Maya Hegh (Auckland) Triple Star One of a Kind 2, Holly Richardson (Warkworth) Pacific Dream 3, Zara Preece-Twose (Auckland) Weiti Be Unique 4, Samantha-Lee Wakeling (Warkworth) BMW Sharpshooter 5, James Steiner (Tauranga) Uba 6.


For full results, head to www.main-events.com


By Diana Dobson
29 March 2021