South Islander Helen Ensor, flanked by sponsors Gaye Skene and her daughter Tania Scott, hoists high the new Skene-Scott Inter-Island Teams’ Trophy. The South Island were convincing winners in the annual stoush 5-2. Photo by Michelle Clarke
It may have been a very damp day three of the New Zealand National Jumping and Show Hunter Championship in Christchurch, but it didn’t stop some excellent competition in the age group and rider series’ classes.
The South Island triumphed in the Skene-Scott Inter-Island Teams’ battle thanks to a late run from Mainland riders. COVID meant a change to how the bragging rights challenge is usually run, with a single point given to the island of the winner of each of the Ring 1 classes. While it was close early in the day, in the end South Island took it 5-2.
It was a rest day for those competing in the height title and championship classes which will culminate tomorrow however, the weather may have a fair bit to say in that with torrential rain forecast.
The skies opened in spurts today and as competition finished at, it really bucketed down but the grounds have help up remarkably well so far.
East Coast Performance Horses bloodlines dominated the age group series classes, with Amy McMullan (Timaru) aboard Cosmopolitan ECPH taking out the East Coast Performance Horses Five-Year-Old Breeders Series (sponsored by Norwood), Rose Alfeld (Leeston) aboard Celebration ECPH the UltraMox Six-Year-Old, and Sophie Scott (Palmerston North) and Benrose Casino ECPH winning the Matthews Hanoverians Seven-Year-Old Breeders Series class (sponsored by Cheryl Bristow). Katie Meredith (Ohoka) and Pure Inferno, who is by Cassiano, were the winners of the Salaco Sporthorses Four-Year-Old Style class.
Amy McMullan pulled off the double in the East Coast Performance Horses Five-Year-Old Breeders Series (sponsored by Norwood), backing up her style prize with another victory this morning.
The Timaru rider guided Cosmopolitan ECPH to an impressive double clear to head home the 14-strong class. Just Amy and Simone Kann (Rangiriri) aboard Balmoral KS Penelope came back for the jump-off. Amy and her grey mare were double clear in 38.08 seconds, with Simone also all clean but slightly slower in 41.83 seconds.
“I am very, very proud of her,” said Amy, of the mare who is by Cassiano out of Gin who is by Corofino II. “The pennies have just dropped and she is going beautifully.”
She bought the horse in December 2020 from the Fitzsimon family and she paid tribute to both Tegan Fitzsimon and Louise Marriott, who had broken the horse in.
The class produced a slew of four fault rounds, with time deciding the minor placings. Ella Rae Wood (Greymouth) and TMS Annabella were the fastest of the four-faulters to take third, with Nic Grant (Canterbury) on Goldfinch GNZ fourth, Jack Ford (Kaikoura) and Masaii Mara GNZ fifth and Jeremy Whale (Hampton Downs) aboard Xtravagant ECPH sixth.
Just four came through to the jump-off in the UltraMox Six-Year-Old Breeders Series class where Rose Alfeld (Leeston) and Celebration ECPH triumphed with a lovely double clear in a slick time. Lucinda Askin (Invercargill) and Gatsby NZPH were first out and while double clear, stopped the clock at 46.58 seconds – just inside the time allowed. Grace Manera (Christchurch) and Estelle left everything up but paid for their caution with seven time faults, Rose and Celebration ECPH zipped around for a 44.87-second effort, followed by Makenzie Causer (Christchurch) and Lord Axel GNZ who will be ruing their decision to take the longer routes, stopping the clock at 46.27.
Rose bought Celebration ECPH, who is by Corofino II, from Jess Land at five. She described the horse as a bit of “strange” but they had now established a solid relationship and were getting some good results. “The plan was just to go clear in the first round and then we had nothing to lose in the jump-off so we gave it a good crack.”
Makenzie finished in second place with Lucinda third, Grace fourth, Georgina Dormer (Christchurch) and Google NZPH fifth with a single time fault from the opening round and Jeremy Whale (Hampton Downs) aboard Six Sixty SP sixth as the fastest four-faulter.
Sophie Scott’s golden run is continuing, this time in the age group classes. The Palmerston North rider was the only one to go clear in the Matthews Hanoverians Seven-Year-Old Breeders Series class (sponsored by Cheryl Bristow), albeit picking up a single time fault aboard Benrose Casino ECPH. The five strong field was peppered with faults, with Lucy Olphert (Queenstown) aboard Kiwi Strike placing second with a four-fault effort, Jeremy Whale (Hampton Downs) and Bannockburn ECPH third as the fastest eight-faulter, Becky Harkerss (Christchurch) with LT Holst Chief fourth and Steffi Whittaker (Christchurch) on Glenbrooke Rosarno in fifth.
Sophie extended a big thanks to East Coast Performance Horses Jenny and Nicki Booth for “breeding such an amazing horse”. “The show has been great so far, so hopefully that will continue!”
The long trip from Auckland for Madison Jackson paid divvies this afternoon when she and her new mount Henton Excalibur convincingly took out both the Mainland Coachwork Junior Rider Series and Equitation (sponsored by Team Victoria) component.
Just five of the starting 19 combinations came back for the jump-off over the Gary Sinclair designed course. Madison was first out, and set a cracking pace, going double clear in 38.87 seconds. Meg Bisset (Blenheim) and Bewitched NZPH gave it a good nudge but took a rail in their 39.96-second effort. Rose Windross (Auckland) aboard Double J Kelvin were next and also had four in their 43.50-second round. Emma Gillies (Oamaru) and Chic Xtreme had an eight fault 40.92-second round, followed by 15-year-old Angus Price (Winton) and Veroana who had four in 43.30 seconds. That gave Meg second place, Angus third, Rose fourth, Emma fifth and Mya Stratford (Queenstown) aboard La Perla sixth place as the fastest four faulter from the opening round.
Madison also won the equitation component, with Rose second, Meg third, Anna Nalder (Cust) fourth, Emma fifth and Molly Moffatt (Christchurch) with Glenmark sixth.
Madison was rapt with the efforts of her new horse, who she bought recently from Oliver Edgecombe. “They had great success together. While he is new to me, we have got to know each other very well already,” said Madison. “I just hoped for the best today and he performed really well on the wet grounds. It was a bit of a trip from Auckland but well worth it.”
Helen Ensor knew exactly what she had to do as she rode in as the last to go in a seven-strong jump-off in the Harrison Lane Pro-Amateur Rider Series (sponsored by Global Performance Horses) class.
Aboard her Centavos gelding Zactac Carnival, Helen knew she had four faults up her sleeve. Ahead of her the very speedy combinations of Jess Land (Christchurch) aboard Emilio MSH and Larina Dolman (Gisborne) on Kiwi Lansing had both taken a rail each in their respective 39.91 and 39.16 second efforts.
Helen opted for the steady clear, coming home with the only double clear of the class in 46.43 seconds, well inside the 54 second time allowed.
“My horse! I am so old now but I have a wonderful horse,” she said. “She is just fantastic. I knew I just had to go clear and she was just jumping her heart out for me.”
Helen, who has many years involvement with equestrian as a selector, chef d’equipe, mentor and rider, thanked the National Championships organising committee for putting on a great show.
Larina came in for second, Jess third, Zoe Shore (Ashburton) aboard Quainton Labyrinth fourth with her four fault, 41.93-second effort, Victoria Brown (Southland) on Renamour APH fifth with four faults in 46.52 and Kimberleigh McCabe (Invercargill) with Kace sixth with eight faults in 41.82.
Samantha Gillies (Oamaru) and Lumarzo made it look easy where others faulted in the FMG Young Rider Series (sponsored by The Rider Shop) this afternoon. The weather cleared for the class that saw Samantha and Lumarzo notch the only clear in the opening round of the 10-strong field. The in-form Sophie Scott (Palmerston North) and Lakota had to settle for second behind her good friend after taking a rail at the first, while Makenzie Causer (Christchurch), who has also been in fine form and Copabella Camouflage were third with their eight fault effort. Sophie Townsend (Darfield) and My Super Nova were fourth, Peita Milne (Nelson) aboard Global PH Mylorde were fifth and Jessica Hore (Miller’s Flat) with Beaumont Birdie sixth.
Samantha was very pleased with the efforts of her grey mare. “It was a great class and Gary (Sinclair) designed an awesome course.”
It’s taken a while and covered thousands of miles, but today it all paid off for Gayle Baker (West Melton) and her Hungarian import Clariton who won the Dunstan Horsefeeds Amateur Rider Series (sponsored by NZPH and A1 Equine Reproduction).
“We’ve come a real long way,” said a very happy rider at the prizegiving. “He was an absolute nightmare and it has taken us about 16 months to get anything out of him but we are finally getting there.”
The horse was bought in Hungary when Gayle was living in the UK and the plan had been for her to return and jump the summer season with him, but COVID got in the way.
Just two combinations of the 18 starters came back for the jump-off. Gayle was out first and rode a lovely double clear, stopping the clock at 47.99 seconds. Elizabeth Bell (Ashburton) and Archie Amor came out firing and looked on track to snatch victory when they took a rail at the second to last, finishing on four faults in their slick 47.51 second time.
Jeremy Clark (Te Kauwhata) and Dynavyte Ipso Facto were third as the fastest four faulter from the opening round in 81.60 seconds, with Talia Allison (Dunedin) aboard Mustang Mochaccino fourth with their four fault 86.05 second effort, Tarryn Jones (Christchurch) on Damani fifth with four faults in 88.2 seconds, and Angela Ruddenklau (Christchurch) aboard Red Rafferty rounding out the top six on four faults in 88.56.
For full results, head to www.main-events.com
February 12, 2022