Aussie Kermond Looking For Three-Peat
19th Annual NZ National Show Jumping and Show Hunter Championships
National Equestrian Centre, McLeans Island, Christchurch
February 7-10th 2013
Aussie Kermond Looking For Three-Peat
In form Australian show jumper Jamie Kermond heads an all-star Australasian line-up contesting the NZ Senior Horse Grand Prix when the NZ National Show Jumping Championships get underway in Christchurch tomorrow (Feb 7) evening.
Kermond is looking for his third Grand Prix win in a row with his brilliant mare Colthaga since arriving in New Zealand, having won both the $50,000 McMillan Equine Feeds Super Grand Prix and $50,000 Forsyth Barr Horse Grand Prix in thrilling fashion in Dunedin last weekend.
And to top it off he’ll be doing it in front of his Christchurch-born owner Jacqui Cox, who is returning especially from Melbourne to her hometown to watch them compete this weekend.
The Senior Horse Grand Prix has attracted undoubtedly the best field in the competition’s history with 17 combinations vying for the more than $12,000 prize purse up for grabs over three days of intense competition, promising spectators jumping action up there with the best in the world.
Having watched the Aussie’s dominate in Dunedin, the Kiwis will be gunning for revenge headed by golden girl Katie McVean, who has last year’s Olympic Cup winner Dunstan Daffodil, as well as rising stars Dunstan Kiwi Iron Mark and Dunstan Springfield entered.
Maurice Beatson (Dannevirke) will also be looking to go one better after finishing runner-up behind Kermond in the McMillan Super Grand Prix with the evergreen, My Gollywog, as will Samantha McIntosh (Cambridge) riding mares Estina and Claire after narrowly missing in the Forsyth Barr Grand Prix.
Defending champion Daniel Meech (Pukekohe) is also back with his lovely mare Argento, while local hopes rest solely on Ross Smith (Burnham) on Quite Cassini and Susie Hayward (Ashburton) on Andretti.
Kermond is joined by fellow Australians Billy Raymont on Stardom, Sarah Isbister on Little Britton, Rory Hovell on Yalambi’s D’Isere, and Alison Rowland on her two home-bred full-sisters, Bickley Brook Bella and Bickley Brook Bianca. Raymont especiall will be itching to get his name on the prestigious Rutherford Cup for the Senior Horse Champion having won it once before on Nicalette NZPH when Australian’s could win the class, but not the trophy.
A field of 23 will line-up in the Fiber Fresh Feeds One Star Championship which is dominated by North Islanders and Australian raiders. Just five South Island combinations will take part including Little River’s Georgina Power on Brooklynite, Mosgiel’s Claudia Hay on Euro Sport Centavos, Juliet Scott on Amarula MVNZ, in-form Invercargill young rider Nicole White and Cricklewood Ace, and crowd favourite Brittany Whelan (Dunedin) on the gusty little George Jetson.
Mathew Gilmour, McVean, Beatson, McIntosh, and young rider Logan Massie on Kiwi Ludo, who had the ride of his life to finish an impressive third in the McMillan Equine Feeds Super Grand Prix, head the North Island chances, while Raymont has picked up the ride on Tyrone Latham’s duo RSB Swift and Waternmark Farm Ducatti, Kermond has Yandoo’s Laughton’s Legacy, Jamie Winning rides Yandoo Zenzel HBC, and Rory Hovell has Yalambi’s Waltzing Matilda, rounding out the Aussie chances.
The two main classes get underway tonight (Feb 7) with the speed round, followed by the second round on Friday, allowing for a rest day on Saturday before the final contest on Sunday, whereas the rest of the championship classes start on Friday.
The show boasts three full rings of jumping with a dedicated showhunter ring in action on Saturday and Sunday, and has a full complement of series’ classes available.
Entry to the National Equestrian Centre at McLeans Island is FREE. Food and refreshments are available on the grounds.