When Graham Winn spoke to course builder, Bernado and asked “How many clears are you hoping to get?” he responded that he was going to build a Championship track, and a championship track is undoubtedly what he built!
Following a retirement at number 1, Protein Feeds Campbell and Lisa Williams jumped a picture-perfect clear round, showing off their experience. Yet, the track was not as simple as they made it look, with only three other riders jumping clear, and the two fastest four faulters joining the top 25% jump-off.
The jump-off track was open compared to the twisty first round, so the test was for the riders to keep the horse forward but still balanced. Nicola Sime-Riley and Insaghi DB were the first to go and put in a cool and controlled clear to end on their first round 4f in 47.76. Hannah Garton and PMH Pollyanna were next to go and, in true style, threw down the gauntlet, knocking three seconds off Nicola’s time and putting pressure on the remaining riders.
Ashlee Healy and Hausberger’s Eldo jumped the first double clear in 45.46 seconds, some two seconds off Hannah’s time. This put pressure on Chatan Hendriks and Biogen’s Kolinko, who had two unfortunate rails.
Bronwyn Dos Santos and Bibisi went next, but in peculiar circumstances, Bronywn lost her reins, miraculously getting them back just in time for the next jump, but with the loss of balance and focus, they unfortunately knocked. They recovered exceptionally well to finish with 4f in 46.95.
Last to go were the ever-competitive Lisa and Campbell. They dropped a stride in the first distance, and galloped to the last, clearly up on time, but knocked the final fence! With the fastest jump-off time (42.21 seconds), they still claimed second place.
Congratulations to Ash and Eldo on two beautiful, effortless rounds and a well-deserved win as the only double-clear!
1st. Ashlee Healy & Eldo
2nd. Lisa Williams & Campbell
3rd. Hannah Garton & PMH Pollyanna
4th. Bronwyn Meredith Dos Santos & Bibisi
5th. Nicola Sime Riley & Insaghi DB
6th. Chatan Hendriks & Kolinko van de Witte Poort