An economical start and excellent second half of the track proved just the ticket for Nicole White and LC Samson who won the EvoEvents Horse Grand Prix at the Show Jumping Canterbury Labour Weekend Jumping Carnival.
The show, held at the Dunstan Fiber Fresh NEC in Christchurch attracted a record 574-odd horses, much to the delight of organisers who had to put in plenty of extra hours due to COVID restrictions.
But the day belonged to the Invercargill sports massage therapist and her 15-year-old gelding. “We actually had a stop in the second and demolished a fence, so they had to rebuild that and I knew I had six seconds on my time to make up,” said the 27-year-old. It was their first outing for the season but at a favourite show. “It is always beautiful and so well run. They did so well under COVID to make it happen.”
Course designer Lex Peddie – assisted by Alex Coleman – had tested the small field both technically and with the size of the jumps.
Nicole, who is trained by Jill Ullrich, was the only clear in the opening round, but added four in the second in 50.55 seconds. Runner-up Lucinda Askin (Ashburton) and Flying Dutchman DHU had four in the opener but clear in the second to finish on four in 50.76 seconds. Third-placed Angus Taylor (Canterbury) and Sea Coral had two rails in the first round but were clear in the second to finish on eight in 48.17 seconds, with Olivia Robertson (Queenstown) and Grandaire having rails in both rounds to finish in fourth.
Nicole plans to get as many Grand Prix starts under their belt as possible and is cautiously looking to come north after Christmas. “We will just see how things are going. With the uncertainty of COVID, I don’t want to get stuck up there doing nothing.”
She has had Samson since he was 10. He arrived still a stallion and was cut soon after but has held on to a few stallion-like traits. “He is as arrogant as all hell and not an easy ride but I do love that he has such character,” she says of the horse who in 2018 won the National Grand Prix title.
Today’s win topped off a good show – Samson also won the 1.3m-1.4m class while nine-year-old Blythburn Cuban Rose had her first mini prix start and “jumped out of her skin” while five-year-old Double J Wolverine had debuted in the 1.1m and done well.
In the Country TV Pony Grand Prix the top four were all double clear with Molly Moffatt (Christchurch) and Te Ngaio Raggamuffin super speedy with their 35.61-second effort for the win. Second was Emma Gillies (Oamaru) aboard Benrose Playtime who stopped the clock at 38.91 with her sister Samantha Gillies and Doctor Jones crossing the flags in 39.45 seconds.
Secretary Gail Power said she and the committee had been strict with their restrictions for riders, but felt happy it had gone well. She admitted there hadn’t been too much sleep in the nights leading into the show, but it was worth it in the end given how things had rolled out. The weather had been beautiful and the grounds spectacular. “People were very appreciative,” she says. “Most are just grateful to be out, and it was excellent to see a lot of first-time competitors here.”
Showjumping, EvoEvents Horse Grand Prix Series (in conjunction with Kinloch Farms): Nicole White (Invercargill) LC Samson 1, Lucinda Askin (Ashburton) Flying Dutchman DHU 2, Angus Taylor (Canterbury) Sea Coral 3, Olivia Robertson (Queenstown) Grandaire 4.
Country TV Pony Grand Prix (in conjunction with Saddlery Barn): Molly Moffatt (Christchurch) Te Ngaio Raggamuffin 1, Emma Gillies (Oamaru) Benrose Playtime 2, Samantha Gillies (Oamaru) Doctor Jones 3, Johanna Wylaars (Christchurch) Larabelle 4, Emma Gillies (Oamaru) Benrose Eclipse 5, Harriet Laing (Canterbury) Springvale Tama 6.
FMG Young Rider Series (in conjunction with BetaVet): Anna Nalder (North Canterbury) Letano 1, Grace Manera (Christchurch) Cazette HSH 2, Gabrielle Thomas (Canterbury) Gothenburg I 3, Molly Moffatt (Christchurch) Glenmark 4, Samantha Gillies (Oamaru) Socrates De La Ve Z 5, Margot Curtis (Amberley) Ngahiwi Stone 6.
Harrison Lane Pro-Amateur Rider Series (in conjunction with Hussey Paint & Panel): Jess Land (Christchurch) Emilio MSH 1, Angus Taylor (Canterbury) Sea Monster 2, Tessa Silcock (Nelson) Cracker Xtreme 3, Molly Buist-Brown (Christchurch) Vali 4, Victoria Brown (Otago) Renamour APH 5, Grace Percy (Glenorchy) Fohn Friday 6.
Mainland Coachwork Junior Rider Series: Anna Nalder (North Canterbury) Ice Breaker II 1, Sam Moffatt (Christchurch) Starlight Daytona 2, Meg Bisset (Blenheim) Bewitched NZPH 3, Emma Gillies (Oamaru) Chic Xtreme 4, Johanna Wylaars (Christchurch) Sioda 5, Quinn Coutts (Mosgiel) Elleway GNZ 6.
Dunstan Horsefeeds Amateur Rider Series (in conjunction with Tavern Harewood): Sonia McKerchar (South Canterbury) Edward NZPH 1, Elizabeth Bell (Rakaia) Archie Amor 2, Stephanie Suppan (Christchurch) Ngahiwi Blackjack ECPH 3, Georgia Reid (Blenheim) Corletto MB 4, Linda Cotton (Nelson) Kingsway Khan 5, Dee Grant (Canterbury) Sinaloa GNZ 6.
Matthews Hanoverians Seven-Year-Old Series (in conjunction with Canterbury Saddlery): Mackenzie Causer (South Canterbury) Quantico GNZ 1, Rose Alfeld (Leeston) Footloose NZPH 2, Becky Harkerss (Kaikoura) LT Holst Chief 3, Maddison Thompson (Canterbury) TH Silvermoon 4.
UltraMox Six-Year-Old Series (in conjunction with Hazlett Rural): Rose Alfeld (Leeston) Celebration ECPH, Helen Ensor (Blenheim) Takapoto India, Georgina Dormer (Christchurch) G Force NZPH, Georgina Dorma (Christchurch) Google NZPH and Rebecca Wardle (Hokitika) WS Empyrean =1.
East Coast Performance Horses Five-Year-Old Series (in conjunction with Canterbury Equine Clinic): Ella Rae-Wood (Greymouth) TMS Annabella 1.
Tavern Harewood Horse Mini Prix: Samantha Gillies (Oamaru) Lumarzo 1, Becky Harkerss (Kaikoura) Kettle GNZ 2, Molly Buist-Brown (Christchurch) Vali 3, Courtney Townsend (Darfield) Corofina ECPH 4, Victoria Brown (Otago) Renamour APH 5, Grace Manera (Christchurch) Cazette HSH 6.
Hussey Paint & Panel Pony Mini Prix: Maygen Gubb (Oamaru) Bespoke 1, Sonya Benison (Springston) MF Spotlit 2, Maria O’Connor (Nelson) LSL Moves Like Jagger 3, Lily Plunkett (Blenheim) Oakspring Wildfire 4, Ruby Rae-Wood (Greymouth) Leopoldo TSH 5, Ashleigh Wood (Motueka) What’s Up Bro 6.
NRM Open Horse High Points Series: Louise Marriott (Rangiora) Clicquot 1, April Spence (Nelson) Cappuccino NZPH 2, Molly Buist-Brown (Christchurch) Vali 3, Josefin Lerbs (Motueka) Major Paradise 4, Brigitte Barnes (Oxford) Heatherfield 5.
Petticoat Lane Performance Horses Adult Equitation Series: Louise Marriott (Rangiora) Clicquot 1, Sarah Ormandy (Canterbury) La Dama Vegas 2, Abbey Baker (Swannanoa) Shaka Zulu II 3,Brigitte Barnes (Oxford) Heatherfield 4, Courtney Thompson (Greymouth) Arovet Li 5.
Gyro Plastics Junior High Points Series (in conjunction with Rosewood Livery): Sophie Townsend (Darfield) Pinstripe II 1, Emily Cowan (Blenheim) My Centastage 2, Sophie Rosanowski (Rangiora) Bellwood O’Banion 3, April Spence (Nelson) Cappuccino NZPH 4, Katie Flett (Canterbury) 5.
Carousel Equestrian Amateur High Points Series: Brigitte Barnes (Oxford) Heatherfield 1, Claudia Faulkner (Christchurch) Tripel Shot 2, Sarah Ormandy (Canterbury) La Dama Vegas 3.
BoP and Waikato Show Hunter Groups 12 & under Equitation Series: Violet Wickham (Blenheim) Willowmead Acrobat 1, Scarlet Baker (Gore) Sunset Hill Xmas Holly 2, Victoria Kelly (Waiau) Stoneleigh Kowhai 3, Casey Reynolds (Rangiora) Sunny Brae Patrick 4, Milly Dampier-Crossley (Rotherham) Minks 5.
Hokonui Horse Sports Pony Cat A High Points Series: Summer Roy (Gore) Scarlet Baker (Gore) Chelton Light Secret 2, Olivia Mehrtens (Canterbury) My Gemma Bear 3, Georgia Kelso (Motunau) Rhythm N Gold 4, Milly Dampier-Crossley (Rotherham) Minks 5.
Fiber Fresh Cat B Open High Points Series (in conjunction with Hokonui Sport Horses): Amy Wassell (Nelson) Bexley Lodge Tinkabella 1, Harriet Baker (Gore) Moonspirit Jitterbug 2, Anna Smith (Wyndham) El Alpha G Wizz 3, Anna Smith (Wyndham) Starlight Smarda 4, Frankie Wells (Marlborough) Galaxy Jungle Fever 5.
For full results, head to www.main-events.com
By Diana Dobson
26 October 2021