Christchurch is this week playing host to one of the most prestigious equestrian shows in the nation, the Tavendale and Partners New Zealand National Showjumping and Show Hunter Championships.
A raft of North Island combinations have made the long trek south to endeavour to hoist the likes of the Rutherford Cup for the premier championship winner high. The bulk of the field in the premier class are from the north and include the recent winner of the POLi Payments FEI World Cup (NZ League) Series, Tegan Fitzsimon (West Melton) aboard Windermere Cappuccino, current Olympic Cup holder Brooke Edgecombe (Waipukurau) and LT Holst Andrea and young gun Sophie Scott (Palmerston North) with her two Waitangi Skynet and Glenbrooke Rich as Roses.
The Graham McClintock New Zealand National Grand Prix Horse Championship, for which the winner will be awarded the Mary Dalley Memorial Trophy, also has a very strong North Island flavour, featuring Kim Best (Hawke’s Bay), Emelia Forsyth (Clevedon), Heloise Tolo (Wellington), Leeshelle Small (Ramarama) and Sophie Scott once again. However, South Islanders Tegan Fitzsimon, Lucinda Askin (Invercargill) and Steffi Whittaker (Christchurch) are all incredibly strong contenders.
The competition will be fierce for the Rangiora Vet Centre NZ National Pony Championship which features the very in-form Samantha Gillies (Oamaru) and her sister Emma but watch out for North Island raider Penny Borthwick (Masterton) who has been in searing form this season. Johanna Wylaars (Christchurch) is also on the card and not to be forgotten is Angus Price (Winton) and his new stead, the former Pony of the Year Fun House. The winner will be the first recipient of the Hampton Trophy, donated this year by Alan Hampton.
There are also national titles on the line for a number of other heights and levels.
The championships open on Thursday with age group and speed classes. The National Championships, which are being held at the Dunstan Fiber Fresh NEC, run over the four days, with combinations carrying penalties through to the next round.
There is also the full gambit of show hunter titles on the line, from junior, amateur, and open, through to cat A, B and C.
Gary Sinclair will be designing the courses in ring one, with Greg Best in ring two and Sarah Ching in ring three.
WHAT: Tavendale and Partners New Zealand National Showjumping Championship Jumping and Show Hunter
WHERE: Dunstan Fiber Fresh NEC, Christchurch
WHEN: February 10-13, 2022
MORE INFO: www.nznationalsjchamps.com
FULL ENTRIES AND RESULTS: www.main-events.com