Luhmuhlen International CCI4*
Luhmuhlen in Germany was such an incredible event for me where both my horses, Kaapachino in the CCI4* and Amsterdam in the CIC3*, were just brilliant. It was my first four star event and it more than surpassed my expectations.
Kaapachino had been pulled out of starting at the Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials in May when he was hospitalized with a serious bacterial infection, but we got him back on track and he felt absolutely incredible at Luhmuhlen. He performed one of the best dressage tests of his life scoring 75.50%, which put us at the close of the first day one place behind Germanys double Olympic gold medalist and World Champion. We set a NZ record, and at the close of the dressage phase were only .03 from Sir Mark and his London Olympic horse.
Words can’t express how proud I am of Kaapachino. He then cruised around the cross-country course like a machine, loving every minute of it to finish bang on the optimum time. It was great to win the Cross-Country Optimum Time prize and receive a pair of boots, generously sponsored by Ariat, for achieving this. The showjumping didn’t quite go to plan but Kaapachino still tried his hardest and we finished in a very solid 16th place in a competition packed with the best. The worlds top 10 riders were all vying for the winning prize. I am so lucky to have Kaapachino,my little thoroughbred, he always gives 110%.
Mr. Gary Harding’s ‘Amsterdam’ continues to really impress NZ Eventing High Performance and I. Luhmuhlen was his second CIC3* and he was stunning across country, and then jumped a beautiful and faultless clear in the showjumping. He has Olympic Games and four star written all over him and we will continue to campaign him very carefully with the bigger picture in mind.
Barbury Castle International:
My next major event was Barbury Castle International, which took place from July 9 – 12. Cleveland and Apart VD Hoefslag Z both ran in the CIC2* and Amsterdam in the CIC3*.
I’m delighted with Amsterdam’s dressage development at 3*, he has improved since Luhmuhlen. Once we add power he will be outstanding. He show-jumped superbly, taking his first rail all season when we came off the steep Barbury bank. The ground was firm cross-country and I elected to not run him, a decision shared by many.
Apart VD Hoefslag Z put in a pleasing performance in all three phases at his first CIC2*, with a superb cross-country.
Cleveland won a highly competitive CIC2*. This was his second 2* and he won on his dressage score of 39.5. Cleveland came to me as a raw, stroppy young man. NZES reported after our win:
Campbell has taken the “sometimes tricky” eight-year-old slowly. “He’s been hard work,” says Campbell. “He’s talented but a bit of a maverick, and I’ve had a few bloody noses on him. I’ve always believed in him, though. He’s a big beautiful horse.”
Cleveland’s win is a glimpse of his abundant talent. He too is a world class horse. I was very fortunate to have the NZ High Performance Horse Power Fund purchase a half share in Cleveland to allow me to find an owner for him.
The day after Barbury I took Jjamaica to Tweseldown for his first Novice run. He has had two 100 starts and this was quite a big step to compete Novice where the cross-country eliminated half the field. Jjamaica proved what a class horse he is. He was fourth after dressage and cruised the tricky cross-country like a true professional.
Amsterdam competed CIC3* and Cleveland his first CCI2* at Irelands Camphire International. The ground conditions for much of the event were horrendous, the worse I have encountered. I now know both horses can jump well in deep mud. Amsterdam coped brilliantly with the deep conditions. He gave me a great feeling, it was a valuable build up to his first CCI3*. Cleveland also impressed and claimed 3rd prize in the CCI2* finishing on his 42 dressage score.
NZE High Performance Athlete