New Zealand has held its third place position after the CCIO4* Nations Cup dressage and showjumping at Le Grand Complet in France. Faults from the leading teams France and The Netherlands has seen the Kiwis edge to just 6.3 penalty points from the front of the field.
Tim Price aboard Happy Boy, who sit in second place individually, added nothing to their tally to stay on 25.2. Jonelle Price and Grappa Nera added only .4 of a time fault for 34.8 to move up the leaderboard, with Tayla Mason and Centennial taking an unfortunate rail and time for her 38.8 penalty point score. Hollie Swain and Solo picked up both time and jump faults.
Tim had plenty of praise for the four-strong team. “We as a little nation are very lucky to have four riders here at Haras,” he said. “It has been good camaraderie between the four of us, walking courses. I am happy with my young horse (Happy Boy) – he has jumped a good round today after a good dressage test to sit in second. Jonelle has had some good jumping as well. Hollie does a very good job with Solo and ever-improving Tayla was great. The time was very tight today. It is a hotly contested class – 70 in it so no gimmie.”
The course looked strong for tomorrow’s cross country and the team are looking forward to pushing hard. “All to play for and we will give it a good nudge.”
Jonelle and Killbunny Andy, who are competing as individuals, had a rail and time for their 32.3 score.
ESNZ high performance eventing manager Graeme Thom praised the efforts of the team. “I think they will put their foot down a bit tomorrow and try to bring one home.”
In the CCI2*-L it is still the slimmest of margins between leader Josephine Schnaufer-Volkel (GER) aboard Cinnamon Red and Tim Price on Jarillo. Just .1 of a penalty point separates the two after the dressage and cross country tests, with the showjumping to come. “He is a lovely young horse and I am very excited about him,” said Tim. “I am looking forward to some good jumping with him tomorrow.”
By Diana Dobson – HP Media Liaison
Photos by Libby Law/ESNZ