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The Kaiapoi Pony Club have taken out the coveted Mitavite Springston Trophy after three days of intense competition at Canterbury Agricultural Park.
It was a close and intense tussle with the defending champions View Hill Red in Christchurch.
The Kaiapoi team had the lead after the dressage on Friday, but relinquished it after the cross-country phase. The Kaiapoi Black team managed to come out on top after the show-jumping phase on Sunday, the first win 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.”
As to next year’s Mitavite Springston Trophy, which will be held in Southland, Stewart says they will be up for the adventure.
Team captain Charlotte Coleman said that the team had a positive perspective.
“We always had hoped - every year you hope to win. You always have to work towards it. It helps when you are all having fun together,” Coleman said.
“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 took out the horsemanship prize.
Organising committee chairwoman Anna Jones was very pleased with how the event came 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 prize-giving 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 show-jumping, 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