There were tears of joy from youngster Zara Main this afternoon when she steered Dingmac Demoiselle to victory in the Country TV Pony Grand Prix (co-sponsored with Vet Post) at the Tauranga Show Jumping Summer Show.
Not only was it their first win but their first clear round too at Grand Prix level – let alone double clear. “It was just so special,” said the 15-year-old from Auckland.
She’s had the 11-year-old pony, a former eventer and dressage competitor, for three seasons and her goal today was simple – just give her some confidence with a good happy round at the last show of their season.
“It went way better than expected,” said Zara who midway through the season had dropped the mare back down to build that all-important confidence. “She came into this feeling really good. I am so ecstatic. She really is coming into her own now.”
Together they’ve had maybe half a dozen Grand Prix starts. “She’s an angel but had just been having a few faults each round. This was awesome.”
Five came back for the second round where it didn’t all go to plan for Zara. “I lost my stirrup the fence before the double and came in there, and just couldn’t see a stride. She scrambled in and saved me.”
The pony is quite the queen bee at home and behaves accordingly . . . but Zara wouldn’t have it any other way. Today they were double clear to take the win ahead of Talia Good (Whakatane) on WE Benson who finished the two rounds on four faults, with Abigayle Martin (Rotorua) in third aboard Jasmine Rose on eight faults.
Tara Gower (Ohura) and Riverhills Legend won the FMG Young Rider (in conjunction with Saddlery Warehouse Tauranga) with the only clear of the opening round, ahead of Mikayla Trott (Auckland) on Redcliffs Armani RF and Sophie Blackbourn (Tamahere) with Roxette ECPH in third.
Paxton Conder (Whatawhata) and La Fonteyn edged out the competition in the Harrison Lane Pro-Am Rider (in conjunction with Equine Hotspots) with a double clear in 35.52, with Vicky Ridley (Karaka) aboard Mosaic II second in 38.93, with Sophie Fisher (Cambridge) on Zara PPH coming in for third.
Kiani Taylor (Tauranga) and Cash Money headed home he Dunstan Horsefeeds Amateur Rider class (co-sponsored by Wainui RV), going double clear in 36.4 seconds, ahead of Mark Weedon (Auckland) aboard Caldoctro ECPH who was also double clear but with the slower time of 39.25. Anna Kincheff (Rotorua) with Red Socks were third.
The Mainland Coachwork Junior Rider (co-sponsored with EquiMatch) went the way of Tara Gower (Ohura) and Double J Image after a very competitive all clear four-way jump-off. Tara’s 38.12 second time just edged out Emma Singleton (Reporoa) aboard Equulei Cola Fizz who crossed the flags in 38.77 seconds, with Sophia Blackbourn (Tamahere) and LT Holst Zalato Blue third in 39.95.
For full results, head to www.evoevents.co.nz .
The opening week of the Let’s Jump Easter Jumping Festival at Taupo also attracted plenty of great jumping with the hotly contested horse 1.35-1.4m classic going the way of Julie Davey (Hastings) aboard Just D who were double clear in 42.43 seconds, just edging out South Island visitor Makenzie Causer (Christchurch) on Dolce Del Colle who were also all clean in 42.47 seconds, with Bernard Denton (Feilding) with Electra NZPH clear in 44.43 seconds.
Twenty-one started the class with seven coming back for the second round where the top five all double clear.
The pony 1.15m classic was won by Johanna Wylaars (Christchurch) aboard Larabelle, with the only clear of the opening round. Filling the minors were five faulters Vienna Wilson (Taupo) aboard Showtym Boss in second, and Regan Calder (Norsewood) and TRS Sniper in third.
For full results, head to www.main-events.com
The Jumping Team – 3 April 2023