By Diana Dobson
Some of the best bloodlines in the country will be pitched against each other this weekend at the East Coast Performance Horses National Young Horse Jumping Championships.
The three day event, which starts on Friday at the Hawke's Bay Showgrounds in Hastings, has attracted more than 400 horses, including good numbers in the age group championship classes for four, five, six and seven-year-olds.
Included in the classes are 12 offspring of former Olympic Cup winner Eurosport Centavos, with 15 from Corofino II and six from Centrico. Hawke's Bay's breeding operations New Zealand Performance Horses and Fernhill Stud are very well represented in the entries, with strong line-ups too from the Double J Stables, Mount View Sport Horses, East Coast Performance Horses and Maurice Beatson.
Qualifying rounds start on Friday morning and each day, the judges will decide how many will continue through to the next round. Any faults will be carried from round to round, with the finals on Sunday. Lex Peddie is designing the courses in ring one.
As well as age group championship titles, there is also the second of six rounds of the Area Teams' Competition on Saturday afternoon. Organisers are expecting around eight regions to be represented. The first round, held in the Waikato, was won by Bay of Plenty, with Taranaki second and Waikato third - all are expected to field teams this weekend.
The Young Horse Show has been running for more than 20 years and is seen as the perfect opportunity to highlight the strong bloodlines, breeding and progression of New Zealand's young showjumping horses.