It is an experienced team of New Zealand showjumpers who have headed to Prague this week for the FEI Nations Cup.
Lining up for the Kiwis against 14 other countries will be Tom Tarver aboard Fiber Fresh Popeye, Daniel Meech with Cinca 3, Richard Gardner on Calisto 5 and Bruce Goodin with Backatorps Danny V.
It’s going to be a tough field on Friday (Czech time) where they will be up against teams from Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Lithuania, Germany, The Netherlands, Slovakia and Sweden, as well as hosts the Czech Republic. Eight of the teams – including New Zealand – have already qualified for the Tokyo Olympic Games.
The CSIO3* courses will be designed by Santiago Vaarela Ullastres (SPA) who will also be designing in Tokyo with organisers calling the event a final rehearsal for those heading to the Olympic Games. New Zealand’s combinations all have Nations Cup experience under their belts, with all four having at some stage been on a winning team.
Tom and his 11-year-old grey Fiber Fresh Popeye have done three and were in the victorious team at the Abu Dhabi Nations Cup in 2020, where they were also second individual behind teammate Daniel.
He and 12-year-old Cinca have competed in two Nations Cups for New Zealand and continue to grow as a partnership with each outing. Just recently they placed third in a 2* Grand Prix in Kronenberg (NED).
Richard and 13-year-old Calisto have done four Nations Cups, including as part of the two winning teams in Abu Dhabi.
Bruce and Backatorps Danny are the most experienced of the team with six Nations Cups caps and again were part of the two victories in Abu Dhabi. The WEG representatives also won a CSI5*-W at Sharjah in February last year.
The Nations Cup is on Friday with the first round set to go at 12.30pm (Czech time), followed by the second at 3.10pm (Czech time). The Grand Prix will be contested on Sunday. Gilbert Boekmann is the chef d’equipe.
Each of the New Zealand riders are also competing on other horses during the show, which is being held without spectators.
The horse details:
Fiber Fresh Popeye – owned by Tom Tarver and Lucia Voss
Cinca 3 – owned by Johnson Horses GmbH and Daniel Meech
Calisto 5 – owned by Gestut Jennissen, Gut Nechen Agar GmbH and Richard Gardner
Backatorps Danny V – owned by Backatorp Ryder AB and Bruce and Ulrika Goodin
By Diana Dobson – HP Media Liaison