Excitement is building at Taupo NEC for the New Zealand Three Day Event and Oceania Championships.
The three Australian teams of riders and their horses arrive on Tuesday. The two senior and one young rider teams will face New Zealand’s best onshore based combinations. All will striving to win by producing their best dressage tests, successfully tackling the challenging and beautifully-presented Chris Ross designed 3 and 4* cross country tracks that have been established at the Taupo NEC over the last few years.
Organisers are saying that this year’s event is an extra special one – not only because it is an Oceania Championships year but because the new Olympic team competition scoring format will be put to the test. Heading to New Zealand to observe is FEI director of eventing, Catrin Norinder, as this will be one of the few opportunities to trial it before the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
The action starts on Wednesday afternoon with the Southern Lakes Tartan Young Event Horse Championships. Finalists will be called back for a final showdown at 5pm in the newly-completed Indoor Arena while the welcome function in being held for the visiting Australians. Tickets to the function can be purchased via Equestrian Entries.
The prizes for the Southern Lakes Tartan National Young Event Horse, the Bates Saddles Best Four-Year-Old, the Reyna Equestrian Best Performed Young Event Horse Mare and the OJZ Promotions Best Registered Thoroughbred will be presented at the end of the competition.
The first horse inspection gets underway on Thursday at 10.30am. Spectators are welcome to come and see all the competing horses be presented to the respective ground juries at the trot up tracks behind the sand arenas. Expect to see both horses and riders looking their glamorous best as they trot out to show the Ground Jury and the veterinary personnel that they are healthy and sound to compete.
The NRM CCI3*-L, DVS Home Ventilation CCI4*-L, and the Fiber Fresh CCI2*-L will all be on the Bayleys Trot Up Track, going through in class and back number order.
The Stirling Collection CCN2*-L, Wairakei Resort CCN1*-L and Taupo Vet Centre CCN105-L will also be in class and back number order on the adjacent Reyna Equestrian Trot Up Track.
At 2pm the first 16 combinations in the CCI3*-L will do their dressage in the Bates Main Grass Arena.
Friday is all about dressage, with the CCI4*-L running from 1pm to 4.15pm in the Bates Main Grass Arena. Australia and New Zealand’s top combinations will be looking to draw first blood in the hotly-contested Oceania clash.
Cross-Country day is the heart of the eventing competition and runs from 8am on Saturday. First out will be the CCI2*-L running on track one with the CCN1*-L starting at 8.15am on track two. Both tracks run concurrently until around 10.30am.
The CCI4*-L XC is scheduled to start at 11.15am with the CIC3*-L due to start at 1.30pm.
The bar upstairs in the Indoor Arena will be open for all to enjoy on Saturday evening from 4pm.
Sunday morning from 8am- 9.40am is the second horse inspection to make sure all have recovered from cross country day and are fit to complete the showjumping. Horses will be presented in the following order – CCI2*-L, CCI3*-L, CCI3*-L, – on the Bayleys Trot Up Track and the CCN1*-L, CCN105-L, and CCN2*-L, on the Reyna Trot Up Track.
Those who are accepted will proceed to their final test of the competition, the showjumping.
The CCI3*-L showjumping for individual placings starts at 10am in the Bates Main Arena, followed by the CCN1*-L prizegiving and then by the CCI3*-L team showjumping competition to decide the Oceania Young Rider Championship. The prizegiving for this and the CCN105-L will follow immediately afterwards.
The pinnacle 4* class starts in the Bates Main Arena at 1.30pm, with Individuals riding first followed by a course change and then the 4* team showjumping to decide the Senior Oceania Championships. Prize giving for this and the CCI2* -L and CCN2*-L will follow shortly afterwards.
The CCN1*-L showjumping will be run in reverse order in the sand arena at 9.45am, followed by the CCN105-L, the CC12* L and finally, the CCN2*-L.
Organisers says this is a special opportunity to come and watch the current top performing Southern Hemisphere-based eventing riders and horses from both New Zealand and Australia, is one not to be missed.