Heelan Tompkins and Cortaflex Up N Go took out the penultimate Bell Tea Super League class of the New Zealand eventing season at Woodhill Sands, north of Auckland, over the weekend.
Tompkins led after Saturday’s dressage in the Fiber Fresh Advanced class on a score of 33.6 penalties, but incurred 11 show jumping time penalties to drop to second place overnight. The current leader of the Bell Tea Super League series, Christen Hayde, Pukekohe, on Tandarra Sweet As, were third after the dressage on a score of 36.4 and incurred 4 showjumping time penalties to take the lead at that stage.
The other two competitors in the class withdrew before the cross-country, opting to save their horses for the final event of the season, the NRM Three-day Event at Taupo on May 18 to 20, leaving Hayde and Tompkins to battle it out, knowing that only the winner would earn worthwhile points.
Having a big buffer over the second placed combination on the series points table gave Hayde the luxury of cruising comfortably around the cross-country course, finishing with 21.6 time penalties and allowing Tompkins, who had 15.2 time penalties, to win the class and the major points on offer.
The final event in the series, the CIC3* at Taupo, earns double points and attracts all the top competitors from throughout the country, so competition will be keen as the top three in the League will earn generous prize money as well as the prestige of being the most consistent of the elite level eventers in the country.
BELLTEA SUPER LEAGUE
Standings after nine events: Christen Hayde, Tandarra Sweet As, 166 pts, 1; Donna Smith, Just Chocolate, 122 pts, 2; Jock Paget, Clifton Airtight, 117.5 pts, 3; Brent Jury, SE Big, 106 pts, 4; Abby Lawrence, Pseudonym, 100.5 pts, 5; Donna Smith, Henton Executive, 84 pts, 6.