The Marlborough Endurance & Trail Club staged the first event in the prestigious FEI Series recently.
There are five events on the 2013/2014 ESNZ Endurance calendar that form part of the international series.
The Marlborough club held the first one on the weekend of Saturday, November 30, and Sunday, December 1.- with CEI 2* 120km and CEI 1* 80km rides on day one and CEI 1* 80km rides on day two, with some successful results and very mixed weather.
The Syncroflex Marlborough 2013 FEI event was held in the picturesque Wairau Valley, covering 18 different properties. There were three loops in total - 40km, 30km and 20km.
Saturday's 120km riders headed out on the 40km loop just after 5am. Marlborough club member Linda Harmon and MF El Marees took an early lead after loop one and kept this lead for the whole ride, eventually finishing in a time of 7hr 49min 24sec ahead of second-placed Alison Higgins, from Nelson, onboard Northwinds Apollo, their time exactly eight hours. Carla Barakat (Nina) and Louise Holmes (Silands Dainty Dish) finished third and fourth, respectively.
Silands Dainty Dish later picked up Best Conditioned Horse and Nina won the award for lowest overall lag times (time between crossing the finish line and presenting to the vet ring) across the three 120km classes.
The Four Flax CEI JY 2* 120km ride was a battle between North Island sisters Patricia and Leanne Ireland. Patricia and Phoenix Alshar won in 8.35.36, while Leanne and Sayfwood Oshaarna were almost 30 minutes back. Phoenix Alshar won Best Conditioned.
The CEN Junior 120km event, for junior riders not yet old enough to ride in the International classes was again contested by siblings - this time Robbie and Jorja James from Oamaru. They finished in a respectful time of just over nine hours with Robbie on Glendaar Amira Fire narrowly prevailing. Jorja's mount Glendaar Crystal Fire won the Best Conditioned Horse Award for this class.
Also contested on Saturday were the CEI 1* 80km rides. In the Senior Equestrian Online class, Kylie Avery and Silands Double Delight had a successful day, completing the three loop 80km ride in 5.09.40, from Hamish Malcolm and Nha'dia, just 10 seconds back. Avery's horse also took out Best Conditioned. Marlborough rider Charlotte Wadsworth and Avaasha rounded out a good day for the host club, winning the Pro-Dosa Boost CEI JY 1* 80km in 5.50.39 and also being awarded Best Conditioned Horse.
On Sunday the Renwick Super Value CEI 1* 80km event was won by Alison Higgins on Twynham El Zephyr, their time 6.01.37, from Rangiora's Debby Worsfold and CA Morocco. Third was North Island's Hilary Webb and Aspen Hills Balalaika while Carla Barakat had her second success for fourth place, this time on Zurim. Twynham El Zephyr won Best Conditioned.
The weekend also featured Novice rides and CTR events held over both days to help boost numbers and these were also well supported and had high completion rates.
Full results from Syncroflex Marlborough FEI:
Syncroflex CEI 2* 120km: 1 Linda Harmon, MF El Marees, 7.49.24; 2 Alison Higgins, Northwinds Apollo, 8.00.13; 3 Carla Barakat, Nina, 8.14.16; 4 Louise Holmes, Silands Dainty Dish, 8.14.17; 5 Debby Worsfold, Twynham El Desi ree, 8.39.15; 6 Bridgett James, Vigar Marissa, 9.10.32; 7 Kevin James, Glendaar Fire Maid, 9.10.33; 8 Georgia Smith, Chartei, 9.11.47; 9 Sylvia Ireland, Sayfwood Classique, 9.17.28.
Four Flax CEI JY 2* 120km: 1 Patricia Ireland, Phoenix Alshar, 8.35.36; 2 Leanne Ireland, Sayfwood Oshaarnna, 9.02.27.
BJ Merino CEN Junior 120km: 1 Robbie James, Glendaar Amira Fire, 9.06.30; 2 Jorja James, Glendaar Crystal Fire, 9.06.46.
Equestrian Online CEI 1* 80km: 1 Kylie Avery, Silands Double Delight, 5.09.40; 2 Hamish Malcolm, Nha'dia, 5.09.50; 3 Dave Rentoul, Talitha Bint Namish, 6.22.50; 4 Gilad Grinberg, Flir, 6.22.51.
Pro-Dosa Boost CEI JY 1* 80km: 1 Charlotte Wadsworth, Avaasha NZL, 5.50.39.
CEN Novice Senior 40km: Q Sioban Harnett, Jed, 3.03.25; Q Anna Hynes, Rutherglen Jack, 3.08.47; Q Donna Boyd, Euralea Emagine, 3.16.04; Q Sarsha Jacobsen, Azraf, 3.16.11.
Renwick Super Value CEI 1* 80km: 1 Alison Higgins, Twynham El Zephyr, 6.01.37; 2 Debby Worsfold, CA Morocco, 6.01.40; 3 Hilary Webb, Aspen Hills Balalaika, 6.34.10; 4 Carla Barakat, Zurim, 6.34.49; 5 Kevin James, The Straight Shooter AHA, 7.38.57.
Equine Specialists CEN Novice Senior 80km: Q Graham Gaiger, Dahman Maktou, 7.07.46; Q Chris Enstrom, Diamond Park Levi, 7.08.56; Q Sophie Harris, Tampo De Oro, 7.25.05; Q Sandra Evers, Silands Snippets, 7.25.18.
CEN Intro Senior 20km: Q Sioban Harnett, D'Arcy, 1.33.54; Q Kelley-Anne Rasmussen, Kaimanawa Disciple, 1.39.26.
Dunstan Horse Feeds CTR Events:
Intermediate 30km: 1 Missy Green, Xavier Cheerokee, 108; 2 Kym Gough, Zena Warrior, 116; 3 Robyn Hill, Silands Kyra, 122. Novice 30km: 1 Dale Matthews, Alamode Ablaze, 118; 2 Arena Mason, Missy, 127. Novice 20km: Q Chelly Taylor, Zahav Beach Babe, 113; Q Georgia Straight, Magic Molly, 121; Q Mandy Henn, Dolce Vita, 136; Q Janine Jordaan, Prince of Jordan, 149.
- The Marlborough Express