All members of both the New Zealand and Australian Trans-Tasman Eventing teams passed the initial horse inspection at Horsley Park, the Sydney Olympic Three-day Event venue, yesterday, following an Anzac dawn commemorative service attended by both teams.
New Zealand won the toss and chose to run second, with Donna Smith and Just Chocolate named as the trailblazers, followed by Simon Gordon on Fletch.com, Joe Waldron on Springvale All Black, and team captain Bryce Newman last on Bates Trademark.
The Australian team consists of Craig Barrett, who won the Adelaide CCI4* last year on the homebred Sandhills Brillaire, Olympian Stuart Tinney on Pluto Mio, Natalie Blundell on Algebra, and new cap Emma Scott on Mustang.
Gordon says, “It’s beautiful and sunny at HorsleyPark,” so the cross-country course will be seen at its best. Olympic course designer Mike Etherington-Smith says he has “ramped it up a bit” for the Trans-Tasman test.
The first phase, dressage, takes place today, with the cross-country on Saturday, and showjumping on Sunday. The horses fly home on Monday.