Kaiapoi Pony Club has taken out the coveted Mitavite Springston Trophy after three days of intense competition at the Canterbury Agricultural Park in Christchurch.
It was a close and intense tussle with the defending champions View Hill Red. The Kaiapoi team had the lead after the dressage on the first day, but relinquished the lead after the cross country phase. However the Kaiapoi Black team managed to claw things back and come out on top after the show jumping phase to win their first title since 1976.
Coach Susie Stewart said the team was over the moon. “Largely we are still the same people who have been coming along to Trophy for a few years now,” said Susie. “We definitely have had our fair share of downs, so it is good to have an up to celebrate.”
Team Captain Charlotte Coleman said that the team had a very positive perspective. “We always had hoped – every year you hope to win. You always have to work towards it. Gus and Suzie (our coaches) have made a massive difference. It helps when you are all having fun together.”
As to how they would celebrate, there was no debate. “We will go back to our Pony Club and have a good old party with everyone.”
While this event is very competitive, the focus is always on team work and good horsemanship. The Methven team won the prize for the horsemanship this year. The team work was seen throughout the event, and it was great to see lots of spectators there to watch the children compete on the lovely grounds.
Chair of the organising committee, Anna Jones was very pleased with how it had come together. “It has pretty much fitted the vision I had from the start of having it here at the showgrounds. It was a really fitting finish having the show jumping out here on the lawn, and the prizegiving in the main oval, that really worked. We had a very hard-working crew, they are an amazing committee, plus their families who also pitched in. We have had many riders come up and thank us, which is really nice. I have also loved seeing the competitors supporting each other. For instance, the rider who was next to last to go for the showjumping, she waited for the last rider who was in a different team, as she realised that rider and her horse would otherwise be left there on her own. That was so cool.”
Other prizes awarded included the Eyreton View Hill Roydvale composite team winning the best shod team prize, donated by Selwyn Forge Farriers. Annabel Wardle and Le Roi de Coeurs won the best shod horse.
Rangiora won the wooden spoon, for the best results from dressage and show jumping (but no finishing score in the cross country). View Hill coach Becci Thomas won the hobby horse competition which was held as part of the entertainment on Saturday night.
1. Kaiapoi 120.93
2. View Hill Red 127.43
3. Halswell Crusaders 137.38
4. Eyreton Navy 147.30
5. Hill White 154.72
6. Halswell West Melton Weedons 165.01
7. North Otago Motueka Composite 169.34
8. Rakaia Tinwald 172.03
9. Eyreton Turquoise 172.82
10. Greymouth Gold 177.61
2019 Kaiapoi Black team:
Manager: Deanne Taane, Coaches: Gus Taylor and Susie Stewart
Molly Moffat (Glenmark), Charlotte Coleman (My Rocket Man), Bell Taane (Marsden Magic), Beth Coleman (DSC Aqualine), Tinesha Benson (My Fancy Phoenix), Sam Moffat (Ataahua Masterpiece).
Image credit: Jane Thompson