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Our show jumping columnist CLAIRE WILSON shares news and gossip
Dressage columnist Bill Noble shares his views
Iwould like to start out by saying congratulations to Ben Lott, who was a part of the Tussock Jumpers Adventure Racing team that competed in the recent Godzone Race (below). This is said to be the toughest expedition race in the world, travelling 540km over seven days non-stop. It is both physically and mentally demanding and competitors need to handle extreme pressure. In my expert opinion, a week at the Horse of the Year Show would be the ideal training for the Godzone Adventure!
After consulting with my talent spotters, there are a few quiet achievers whose progress has been noticed lately. Megan Schischka has been singled out as seriously competitive and an all-round top chick! She has clocked up numerous wins with Hollywood Wannabe and is a well-respected rider in the northern circle of shows.
From the lower North Island, my spies have reported that Phoebe Topp, Alicia Bowie and Lucy Rowe have done a good job with their Junior horses this season. And in the South Island, Georgie Goodworth, Florence Tapely and Courtney Townsend have been producing some great results towards the tail end of the season.
The Waitemata Show Jumping group hosted the North Island Champs and those who went were again impressed with the great lengths that this committee goes to in staging a top class show! There were a couple of standout performances, firstly the epic Pro Am win for Karen Riddle riding LC Funny Lass. This was pretty impressive, considering the combination had only been together two weeks! And Cerys Tarr and the super-consistent Madam Coco, took away the North Island 6YO title. This was very well deserved considering the HOY title
eluded them a er her bit broke during their round, causing retirement.
Our condolences go out to Elmo Jackson, whose horse, High Five, su ered a cardiac arrest en route to the North Island champs. Elmo has been in ne form in the Junior Series and was a hot contender for this title.
Wedding bells have been ringing and it looks like several long-standing equestrian families have been joined by marriage. Daniel Worker and Kirsten Mcleod have tied the knot, as have Manny Hansen and Chloe Akers. Congratulations to these happy newlyweds!
Lisa and Sean Cubitt are another pair of show jumpers who are forging ahead, albeit in Australia, based with Oaks Sporthorses. Lisa recently won the prestigious Perpetual Cup at the Sydney Royal Show, with the 12-year-old Amaretto MVNZ, aka Beetle.
Did you hear about the couple who are joining forces on a tandem bike ride for the 3000km length of New Zealand? Josh Barker and partner Maggie iede are raising awareness of head injuries and the importance of wearing a helmet. Clearly, they aren’t married yet… but what a huge challenge this will be on so many levels! Let us wish them luck and support their chosen charity, THINK.
And how about the beautiful young lady, Aleshia Taylor, who I saw competing in the categoty A pony show hunters at Foxton? e very next day she shaved her hair o to raise funds for cancer research. e more I hang around the show hunter world, the more impressed I am!
Jaime Campbell and Travis Morgan’s boutique show, the Harrison Lane Jumping Spectacular, was held at the Van den Brink’s Willow Park polo grounds. Everyone agreed that it was a truly glamorous event that brought jumpers, racing and polo people together for a day of top-level competition! Congratulations to everyone who helped to make this such a special event.
Maurice Beatson has been re-elected into the rider’s rep position for a second term, with a grand sum of 220 riders bothering to vote. I believe about 40 others tried to vote, but they weren’t eligible; however, ‘top marks’ for trying!
But isn’t this a poor turn-out? We obviously have plenty of riders who keep their head down, focus on their riding but aren’t remotely interested in the mechanics of the sport. And we have 220 others, who are willing to speak up, vote and show some interest in how the sport is run. Which group do you belong to?
So, I asked our rider’s rep if there was anything in the pipelines that the rest of us should know about.
Apparently the Jumping Board has been very busy, and there are plans for more training in the future, with overseas trainers in mind. e goal is for New Zealand to have more Nations Cup teams (like the recent team that competed in Florida) and ultimately, a team at the World Equestrian Games in 2018.
Maurice also wanted to congratulate the ve course designers who all passed their level two exam at the recent FEI course seminar. And he also mentioned that he is always happy to talk to any riders with questions or concerns!
Here is a message from Dr Seuss, to all those riders who have been reluctant to get involved or get informed: “Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind!”
Megan Schischka and Hollywood Wannabe have clocked up numerous wins, including being in the ribbons at the recent Harrison Lane Karaka Jumping Spectacular