Clareville will thrum to the sound of galloping hooves next weekend, with the Fagan Motors Eventing Wairarapa Horse Trials spread over two days.

Around 120 horse and rider combinations are expected to start in the first of the three phases. Assuming a live score following the dressage, riders then tackle the two jumping phases – show jumping and cross country, where competitors ride up to 3.5 kilometres at pace and over obstacles strategically placed up hills, over ditches, in water and down banks.

Eight different classes will run, classified by jump heights ranging from 65cm at entry level through to the cream of the competition, referenced as 3* and requiring campaigners to successfully negotiate their way over 1.20m high poles in the ring and up to 1.35m high by 3.20m wide cross country fences.

Cross Country design is quite a science these days and Eventing Wairarapa is thrilled to once again have  renowned international rider and current high performance coach, Blyth Tait, designing the 2* and 3* tracks. Local course designer, Donna Harley, takes care of designing the lower level tracks and clever local course builder, Chris Lever, master crafts bespoke jumps with his signature flair.

Next weekend’s competition will be top notch with Eventing Wairarapa also hosting the Young Rider and Junior Rider One Day Championships. It’s been 60 years since a national eventing title class was first held in Wairarapa – the Forest Gate Trophy in Masterton in 1963.

Eventing Wairarapa Chair, Cec Dalziell-Clout, recognises the collaborative effort that it takes to run the eventing trials.

“Next weekend will be the end result of what has probably been thousands of hours investment by hundreds of people,” she says.

“At last count, by the end of the day on Sunday, around 100 volunteers and officials will be exhausted and ready for a lie down, and many others have been instrumental leading up to the event. It takes that many of us to make it happen.”

And then of course there are the sponsors, without which there is no competition.  As well as naming sponsor Fagan Motors; PGG Wrightstons, Kieran Oliver Trucking, Lifestyle Property Management and Woodlea Contracting – and many more, too many to name – have put their hand in their pocket to support Eventing Wairarapa.

“We are grateful, and we know we will do them proud,” Dalziell-Clout promises.

Spectators are welcome. Dressage will begin on Saturday morning with jumping starting around midday and the cross country running from 08.30 Sunday.

ENDS – Photos attached
Anna Cardno 027 205 2422

Jessica Todd jumps the Kieran Oliver Truck, 2022
Credit Belinda Pratt Photography

Caley Fisher jumps the TAB Doghouse, 2022
Credit Belinda Pratt Photography