Aliya Berry rides Justified NZPH. East Coast Performance Horse 5 Year Old. 2024. Copyright Photo: Libby Law Photography

The East Coast Performance Horses Five Year Old Breeding Series saw consistency rise to the top with Kylee McCambridge and Aliya Berry sharing the gold medal. Only competing at four shows each, both ladies showed only having their eyes on producing their horse for the future.

Aliya Berry is an up and coming young rider based in the mighty Waikato. Alongside her own horses, she works for well-known equestrian Oliver Croucher, where she rides between five and ten horses a day.  She is a regular contender in the Young Rider Series with her experienced mount Neo, and in December she added Justified NZPH (Candy de Nantuel x Frizzante NZPH/Non Plus Ultra – Bred by NZPH) to her string. “Ted is the first young horse that I’m producing. Trudi Mitchell rode him for the first half of the season and gave him a good start which always helps.”

Trudi picked up some nice results in this series, meaning that they headed into the Series Final in sixth place. “I had no expectations of winning and so had no pressure on me as I didn’t know that a win was going to bump me up so much (in the placings)”. Aliya and Ted went on to jump the only clear to take home the win and indeed it did bump them up enough to also become joint winners of the series.

Aliya describes Ted as a big softy who is very sweet on the ground although he can be sassy to ride, he has no dirt – even if he can throw in a good buck every now and again!

Next season this combination will aim to keep stepping up the heights slowly and do some six year old classes. “He’s definitely one that I want to produce long term and it’s great to have Ollie helping me through it”.


Kylee McCambridge rides Waitangi Neon.  Copyright Photo: Libby Law Photography


Kylee McCambridge considers herself very lucky to have the ride on Waitangi Neon (VDL Zirroco Blue x Waitangi Wiki/Lansing) who is bred and owned by Joss Bayly from Waitangi Sport Horses. Having only picked up the ride a year ago, she wasn’t sure what to be aiming him for. After he picked up a tidy third place in his first five year old start at Waikato Showjumping, it was decided to aim him for the National Young Horse Show.

A wise decision for this young but brave horse who seems to thrive off a challenge and went on to jump three clears out of four rounds to finish in second place. “As a five year old, we were really unsure how he would cope with three days in a row, but he was the best on the last day. He has so much engine and thrives from the challenge and the environment. He just grew and grew and grew!”.

After a wee Christmas vacation, Nemo picked up fourth place at Takapoto before heading to the Horse of the Year. “I never once went fast in the jump off, even though Colin (McIntosh) told me to give it a bit of a go at HOY. I went a bit more forward to the first fence, but then lost my rhythm, so decided to keep it smooth and confident”.  They finished in fifth place, picking up some important series points!

“He loves working and doing it for you. All the traits you can’t teach, he has them!”.

Kylee puts much emphasis on how supportive and great Joss is to ride for. “It’s not about winning the five year old today, it’s about producing a horse for the future.  Colin is the same, it’s been a wonderful team effort”.

Speaking of a team effort, Kylee also praises the fantastic start to Nemo’s ridden career thanks to Esther Thompson. “Joss & John have a beautiful farm on the coast at Waitangi where Esther lives and breaks the horses in. She rides them all over the farm giving them great life experiences, she is kind and does a really great job of starting them. So when I get them, although they haven’t done much arena work, they are worldly and confident in their own way”.

Whilst Kylee sees that this five year old year was all about giving Nemo good miles and setting him up, she thinks he is going to be a very exciting horse. “I’ve had a lot of fun with him and it’s quite good when you don’t have that expectation and each time they come out and they are better, it’s like wow, this is cool! I see him as a more competitive six and seven year old”.

In saying that, Kylee has no intentions of chasing the six year old series but will rather enjoy going to the shows that she knows have a good going and environment. “If he can be consistent, that’s all you really need, and if it all falls into place, it’s all good and well! Consistency is a wonderful thing to have in a young horse and that’s what we were thrilled with”.

Series Sponsors, East Coast Performance Horses are a showjumping and breeding farm, located on the east coast of New Zealand, 40 minutes from Masterton and is owned and run by Craig and Jenny Booth and their daughter Nicki Hull.


East Coast Performance Horses 5 Year Old Breeding Series Results:

1st= Aliya Berry and Justified NZPH (Candy de Nantuel x Frizzante NZPH/Non Plus Ultra – Bred by NZPH)

1st= Kylee McCambride and Waitangi Neon (VDL Zirroco Blue x Waitangi Wiki/Lansing – Bred by Waitangi Sport Horses)

3rd=  Molly Buist-Brown and Granttorio (Candyman GNZ x Grattorio/Littorio – Bred by Carrie Findlay)

3rd= Julie Davey and LT Holst Elle Star (Big Star x LT Holst Carla/Calato – Bred by LT Holst Sport Horses)

5th – Vicki Wilson and Dakota VWNZ (Daminos x Empress VWNZ/Carrado MVNZ – Bred by Vicki Wilson)

6th – Jesse Linton and Everest MH (Euro Sport Centavos x SPM Roulette MH/River Dance – Bred by Angela Miller)


The Jumping Team – 24 June 2024