Standardbred of the Year

14 Mar

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Amanda Burton has been after the Ridden Standardbred of the Year title for some time. She has won the in-hand title before and she’s finished runner up as well as third in the ridden section but it was her year this year and she has finally nailed that title on her lovely Change of Pace.

“It’s been a long time coming,” she said. “It’s an amazing feeling especially as I didn’t think it would happen this year. I have only ridden him four times in the last week after he got in a fence six weeks ago,” she said. The ten-year-old standardbred will also be doing a demonstration at the Friday night’s Hastings Heart of Hawkes Bay Extravaganza to demonstrate what great riding horses the standardbreds can make.

Shannon Armour and Macklemore made the trip all the way from Invercargill and were rewarded with runner up. It was her first time competing at the show and as to whether she will come back, she was adamant she would. “My husband doesn’t know that yet though!”

In the 4* Eventing, local Hawkes Bay rider Amanda Pottinger with Just Kidding has the narrowest of leads after the dressage phase.

 She has headed off all the overseas-based superstars but the differential between the top three is just 1.4 penalties. In second place is Waikato’s Madison Crowe and Waitangi Pinterest and UK based Kiwi Tim Price is in third place on Ricker Ridge Escada.

Meanwhile the Land Rover 3* class is being led by Olympian Blyth Tait on Havana on a score of 26.9 with second place being held by Samantha Lissington on Ricker Ridge Sooty GNZ with their score of 27.2. Fiona Fraser on Xanthus III is third on 29.6 with another Olympian, Jock Paget on Ricker Ridge Riley fourth on 30.2. 

 “Mind blowing!” That was how Mikayla Herbert described her win in today’s very competitive Ultra Mox Lady Rider of the Year, on her nine year old Warmblood gelding Grand Caballo.

“He has never jumped that good ever before!  It is so very special to win my first ever Horse of the Year Title, I didn’t think it was ever going to happen.”

From Rotorua, Mikayla and Grand Caballo have been together for three years, starting their career together competing in the seven-year-old classes as well as some Young Rider classes. “Now he has pulled this one out of the bag,” said Mikayla.

Mikayla, who was very emotional about her win, wasn’t sure whether she would start in the Canterbury Equestrian Premier Stakes on Saturday. “We’ll see when I have calmed down from this high,” she said.

There were eight combinations who came back for the second round, and four of them went clear but it was only Mikayla who managed the double clear. Tegan Fitzsimon and Double J Monarch also produced two double clear jumping rounds, but that one time fault incurred in the first round proved to be very expensive. “I’m kicking myself,” said Tegan afterwards. “I thought I was going so fast too!”

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