The weather gods came to the party and turned on a beautiful day for Eventing Southlands third event of the season at Donovan Park, sponsored by BetaVet. Course designer Jim Hazlett, assisted by Lindsay Carruthers, did a marvellous job of designing good tracks with plenty of questions, which were well presented.

What a great week it has been for 17 year old Sarah Beck and her beloved Gargamel, who produced a beautiful cross country round to take the win,  in the Saddlery Warehouse CCN 2* at their first attempt at this level.  Their win came on the back of a successful week at NZPC Champs where they were part of the winning Otago/Southland Black team that won the NZPC National overall Show Jumping Championships as well as South Island Champions.  Gargamel, who is completely self produced by Sarah, is a fine example of the versatility of Thoroughbreds, and has made a seamless transition from successful racehorse to sport horse.  It has really been a family affair with Sarah’s mother Leda and Jason Spencer breeding him and racing him, while Leda trained him.  Amongst his wins were the prestigious NZ Grand National Hurdles in 2014 and the Invercargill Gold Cup a few years before.  He also ran 3rd in the 2016 NZ Grand National Steeplechase and NZ Koral Steeplechase.

Corey Wood is producing another nice thoroughbred in the 8 year old CWS Monarch, who completed classy cross country and jumping rounds to take the win in the Eastern Physiotherapy CCN 105.  The evergreen pair of Il Mafioso and King Curtis, with riders Kate Hamilton and Sarah Beck, were second and third.  Both these two horse have previously competed to 3* level and have a combined age of 41 years.   They are both looking superb and clearly enjoying their jobs, which is a credit to their young riders.

The Witches Brew CCN 95 was won by Scott Hindrup, while Caitlyn Cook and Riverview Park Zipporah II won the Excel Equine NZPC 95 class.

Lara Cocker and Superstition took out the Gail Richardson CCN 80 class with Lucy Drake and Smok N Aces taking the honours in the Comfy Equine Rubber Matting NZPC 80.

Hannah McLaren and Rough Gem won the Saddle Tree CCN 65 class while Italy Wills and Little Ginge came out on top in the largest class of the day to win the Churchys/HT Oil NZPC 65 class.

Udys Grain and Seed First Start classes were won by Janine O’Connor and Poly in the over18 class with Charlotte Clarke and Toi Toi prevailing in the under 18 class.

Special thanks to all our Sponsors, who we couldn’t do with out.  As well as the officials and all the volunteers who helped to make this events happen.  Our next event is at Gore on the 26th March followed a week later with SI Champs at Ryal Bush on 2nd April.

The AB Lime sponsored Teams event has attracted good entries so the next 2 events will be very important.  NSVets also sponsor our Accumulator prize which will be decided at our final event at Ryal Bush on 2nd April