Big achieve­ment for young rider

Matamata Chronicle - - Front Page - By MERE­ANA AUSTIN

Mata­mata’s Char­lotte Chittick, 12, has con­quered her high­est achieve­ment yet, win­ning the Un­der 13 Cham­pion Rider of the Year class at New Zealand Horse of the Year.

The class is judged on the rider’s abil­ity.

Char­lotte’s mum, Lisa Chittick, said it is a sought af­ter class. ‘‘In or­der to get in the class you have to qual­ify as a cham­pion,’’ Mrs Chittick said.

Char­lotte qual­i­fied for the class by win­ning cham­pion rider classes through­out the year.

‘‘I en­joy the hap­pi­ness when I do well,’’ Char­lotte said.

Mrs Chittick said Char­lotte was fan­tas­tic at Horse of the Year.

‘‘It’s a huge achieve­ment and I think it’s great for a kid who puts in the hard work and ef­fort to reap the re­wards,’’ she said.

Horse of the Year (HOTY) is the largest eques­trian event in the South­ern Hemi­sphere, where 2500 com­bi­na­tions of horse and rider can com­pete in al­most 20 dis­ci­plines.

The event is held an­nu­ally in Hawke’s Bay and takes place from March 18-23.

Char­lotte trains five to six days a week and com­petes ev­ery sec­ond or third weekend dur­ing the sum­mer.

Her hard work and ded­i­ca­tion is pay­ing off as Char­lotte also won the Paced and Man­ners class at HOTY.

‘‘Paced and Man­ners is how well the pony be­haves and the pony show­ing it­self off to the best of its abil­ity,’’ Char­lotte said.

Char­lotte com­peted on her pony Buster. Char­lotte be­gan rid­ing when she was only four years old and has high hopes for her eques­trian ca­reer.

‘‘I don’t know if I want to do jump­ing or dressage but I’d like to end up at the Olympics,’’ Char­lotte said.

Char­lotte’s dad, Mark Chittick, said Char­lotte has an un­be­liev­able at­ti­tude.

‘‘She is hard work­ing. De­ter­mined but com­posed,’’ he said.

Char­lotte is go­ing to Aus­tralia in De­cem­ber to rep­re­sent New Zealand at Wer­ribee, an in­ter­na­tional event. She will be com­pet­ing on Buster.

Char­lotte’s he­roes are New Zealand eques­tri­ans’ Vanessa Way, Katie McVean and Kelly Van Dyk.

Char­lotte would like to thank Felic­ity Keyte, Kelly Van Dyk and her par­ents for all of their sup­port.

For more news from HOTY turn to page 24.

Pho­tos: LES­LEY WARWICK

Cham­pion in ac­tion: Char­lotte Chittick com­petes at Horse of the Year on her pony Buster.

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