Matthews Hanoverians may focus on breeding dressage superstars but history tells us their showjumpers are also something quite special. The season has been a brilliant one for the stud, with Wendi Williamson and Don Amour MH winning Dressage Horse of the Year and Melody Matheson aboard Graffiti MH placing second in the Olympic Cup for Showjumper of the Year. Both combinations picked up a raft of other very impressive wins and placings throughout the season.
Matthews Hanoverians are no strangers to sponsorship as long-term supporters of dressage, but this season marked their first in jumping, as sponsors of the Seven-Year-Old Series. Angela Miller says it is the perfect place for the stud to be. “It is where you start to see the top horses coming through,” she says. “A lot of Graffiti MH’s year are now jumping well at World Cup level – it’s where you see ones popping their heads up to say they are going to be good.”
Angela says she and stud owner Judith Matthews are thrilled with the season. “We tried desperately at HOY to give Judith the double with Wendi and Melody. The Olympic Cup was a fantastic class – once we got to that jump-off with Melody and the other girls, well, we were just so proud to get that far.”
It’s the camaraderie and support Angela has seen in jumping that really buoys her. “That is what it should be like and it is a pleasure to see,” she says. As well as Graffiti, there have been others to stand out for the MH brand – Alcazam MH, Roulette MH and now Enya MH is coming through the grades.
Judith’s association with equestrian goes back decades and in 2017 she was awarded the Kay Fissenden Memorial Trophy for her outstanding contribution to dressage New Zealand. She is considered an early visionary in New Zealand breeding and while she sought initially to breed a good horse for herself, the resulting efforts have most certainly changed the face of competition in dressage in this country. But as well as producing incredible horses, Judith has also always brought on young riders.
It’s a passion that she has passed on to Angela who also enjoys seeing young riders blossom. “With Melody I have really enjoyed seeing someone develop, through providing them with good horse power and support to see what they are able to do.”
Roulette MH was Angela’s dressage horse before Melody took her over and jumped her to grand prix level. This year the Northland-based Matthews Hanoverians had 11 foals on the ground with a couple destined for the jumping arenas. Chances are, if their track record is anything to go by, we’ll be seeing these babies starring in years to come.
For more information, head to www.matthewshanoverians.co.nz
By Diana Dobson