Kiwis head to the cash-rich opening leg of the Event Rider Masters Series at the Dodson & Horrell Chatsworth International Horse Trials in Derbyshire this weekend.
Everyone will be looking to see what the newly-crowned Badminton champ Jonelle Price can achieve aboard her Rio Olympic horse Faerie Dianimo in the CIC3* ERM class. She’ll be joined by husband Tim on Xavier Faer, Andrew Nicholson on Swallow Springs, Sir Mark Todd aboard McClaren and Blyth Tait on Dassett Courage.
There are 40 combinations from nine nations competing in the first leg of the series which kicks off with the dressage on Saturday. The calibre of the field ensures plenty of excitement and some fierce competition.
Last year Nicholson and Swallow Springs were the best of the Kiwis, finishing in fifth place with Gemma Tattersall (GBR) and Quicklook V taking the honours. Tattersall went on to the crowned the 2017 ERM champ with Todd third overall. Jonelle Price was runner up in the 2016 series.
Oliver Townend (GBR) is currently the world number one ranked eventer, with Tim Price at number three just nine points behind him, Nicholson at number six and Todd at number eight.
The six leg series features 40 of the world’s best horses and riders competing over a shortened dressage, showjumping and cross country FEI CIC3* format, all chasing a slice of the £350,000 prize purse.
The second leg is at the Internationales Wiesbadener Pfingstturnier in Germany (May 18-19), followed by the Concours Complet d’Arville in Belgium (June 23-24), St James’ Place Barbury Castle International Horse Trials (July 7-8), Haras de Jardy International Eventing Show in France (July 14-15) and the series finale at the Land Rover Blair Castle International Horse Trials (August 25-26).
The series is live-streamed free via www.eventridermasters.tv .
A number of New Zealanders are also on the card for the CIC3* class too, including Tait with Bear Necessity V, Leo Distinction and Havanna II, Dan Jocelyn with Blackthorn Cruise and Grovine de Reve, James Avery on both Zazu and Optimus Prime II, Caroline Powell on Spice Sensation, Nicholson aboard Yacabo BK and Jackson with both Superstition II and Willy Do.
The horse details:
Faerie Dianimo – owned by Trisha Rickards, Jacky Green and Jonelle Price
Xavier Faer – owned by Trisha Rickards, Tim Price and Nigella Hall
Swallow Springs – owned by Paul and Diana Ridgeon
McClaren – owned by David and Katherine Thomson
Dassett Courage – owned by Thomas Barr, Sally Grant and Blyth Tait
Bear Necessity V – owned by Ronnie Bartlett and Blyth Tait
Leo Distinction – owned by Blyth Tait, Julia and Fiona Fraser and Jane Lovell-Smith
Blackthorn Cruise – owned by Therese Miller and Panda Christie
Zazu – owned by Alexander Giannamore
Yacabo BK – owned by Andrew Nicholson
Optimus Prime – owned by Joe, Alex and Louis Giannamore
Superstition II – owned by Gillian Greenlees
Spice Sensation – owned by Claire and Michael Hunter and Caroline Powell
Havanna II – owned by Jane Lovell-Smith, Katherine Corish and John Ormiston
Willy Do – owned by Gillian Greenlees and Lucy Jackson
Grovine de Reve – owned by Therese Miller, Jo Preston-Hunt, Philip Hunt and Dan Jocelyn
WHAT: Dodson & Horrell Chatsworth International Horse Trials, featuring the opening leg of the Event Rider Masters Series
WHEN: May 11-13, 2018 – ERM May 12-13
WHERE: Chatsworth House, Derbyshire, UK
MORE INFO: eventridermasters.tv and www.chatsworth.org/events/horse-trials/
By Diana Dobson – HP Media Liaison