There is a strong contingent of Kiwi eventers heading to L’international de Lignieres en Berry in France this week.
Spear-heading the New Zealand efforts at Lignieres in the CCI4*-L is world no. 2 Tim Price aboard nine-year-old Spartaco and 11-year-old Falco. Both have completed 4*-L before with Spartaco seventh on debut at Poland in August and Falco top 10 at Blenheim last year.
Tayla Mason is entered aboard her nine-year-old bay gelding Centennial, with Jesse Campbell taking the course on aboard Diachello, the 10-year-old gelding who has recently completed two 4*-S courses. Jesse is also entered on Amsterdam, his 14-year-old grey gelding who did the 4*-L at Blenheim last year and was recently second in the OI at the Cornbury House International.
Samantha Lissington and Ricker Ridge Sooty GNZ will be riding a high after their top seven effort in the age group CCI4*-S at the Burnham Market International recently. The class has attracted 34 entries from seven nations including Brits Alexander Bragg and Tom McEwen, and Frenchmen Nicolas Touzaint, Maxime Livio and Thomas Carlile.
The CCI3*-L has 62 on the card and include Jonelle Price with Curly Girl, Faerie Magnifico and Killbunny Andy. Jesse has two horses entered, the experienced Cleveland and Cooley Lafitte while Tayla will be aboard Gino Gingerino.
Four New Zealand combinations will contest the CCI2*-S with , Jonelle on Diamante and Jesse with Shadow Sister.
Pierre le Goupil (FRA) is designing the cross-country courses across the grades with fellow countryman Alexis Donnadieu tasked with the showjumping courses. Competition gets underway with horse inspections on Wednesday followed by dressage through to Friday and jumping and cross country through the weekend. There is 23,000 Euros in the prize pool across the divisions, with 13,000 Euro up for grabs in the 4*-L.
Lignieres is the start of a five-and-a-half week mission in Europe for Team Price. It’s a massive logistical exercise with horses and personnel coming and going as events roll out.
The first truck left Mere Farm on Monday while Tim and Jonelle gave their Pau horses a last run through before driving through the night to Lignieres on Tuesday night.
The Lignieres horses will then head home from their French base while the rest of the team will continue to base there until heading to Pau later in the month. “That will be a bit different to what we are used to when travelling from the UK to Pau,” says Tim. Following Pau another truckload will head back to the UK while a fresh set of legs head on to The Netherlands and further for more events before returning home. Even Tim admits it is hard to keep up with themselves sometimes.
THE HORSE DETAIL:
Spartaco – owned by Tim and Jonelle Price
Falco – owned by Sue Benson
Centennial – owned by Sue Rutter, Sonya & Tayla Mason
Diachello – owned by Kent Gardner and Jesse Campbell
Amsterdam – owned by Craig Campbell
Cleveland – owned by Kent Gardner and Jesse Campbell
Ricker Ridge Sooty GNZ – owned by Pip McCarroll and Samantha Lissington
Faerie Magnifico – owned by Trisha Rickards
Curly Girl – owned by Kate Holmes, Jackie Olivier, Kate Amin, and Ben and Lucy Sangster
Killbunny Andy – owned by Therese Miller and Constance Edmundson
Gino Gingerino – owned by Jeremy Young
Cooley Lafitte – owned by Jay Jaffar
Shadow Sister – owned by Kent Gardner and Jesse Campbell
Diamante II – owned by Joanne Pullan
By Diana Dobson – HP Media Liaison