Competition History

The Springston Trophy, now in its 46th year (2017), is the largest pony club event in the Southern Hemisphere. It had humble beginnings however, as all great ideas tend to, being conceived at the breakfast table of the late Mary Dalley at Pemberton, near Christchurch. Don Collett and Joan McCall were traveling back to the south with horses that had competed at the 1971 NZPCA horse trials championships in Masterton. All three agreed it would be a good idea to have a competition that allowed ordinary riders in the branches who may never attend the championships the opportunity to compete. Mary Dalley proposed that the Springston branch would hold the first such event, provided the Gore branch, to which Don Collett and Joan McCall belonged, agreed to hold the one following. "I'll ask a parent to donate a trophy and we will keep the costs down and run it as cheaply as possible" Mary said. Over the next three months the form of the Springston Trophy was shaped by Mary and Joan, over the course of many long and involved telephone calls, with the first event being held at Springston on 26 and 27 August 1972 on the properties of I & K Bailey and Mrs. C Wright. The parents who donated the trophy were Margaret and Murray Foster.

The times for the age groups were: 16 years and under - 500 yards per minute (ypm), 14 years and under - 475 ypm, 12 years and under - 450 ypm. Four scores were to count, three being the best score of each age group, plus one other. The dressage tests were at the discretion of the hosts and branch uniform was to be worn in all phases. At the first event a meeting of eleven delegates decided to continue the events and for the standards to remain the same. They were not in favour of branches combining for the event, or of North Island branches competing. It was resolved that in future no individual prize would be awarded, but the host branch would have the discretion in selecting the prizes for the teams that were placed. The technical delegate would be decided by the previous years host branch.

There were 15 teams competing in the first event (1972), in real arctic weather (cold wet weather is a regular feature of Springston Trophy): Bangor, Rangiora, Cheviot, Halswell, Timaru, Belfast, Riccarton-Fendalton, Mill Creek, Gore 1 and 2, Waihora, Kaikoura, Western Southland, Ferrymead and Springston the host branch. The winner was Gore No1 team: Fiona Stewart (Hylight), Jan Harvey (Tommy Adam), Lynne Collins (Naircena), Jane and James Collett (Felicity and Lizette), Hughan Pedlow (Mr Bojangles).

The second event (1973) was held at Alan Scott's at Pukerau near Gore. It snowed two days before the event. Again there were 15 teams entered. Mary and Joan decided Oamaru would be a suitable location for 1974 and it was at this event that Springston Trophy really took off. This event had 30 teams entered and the host club feared that that it could not cope...! There were no back numbers over 100, and everything had to be doubled. The dressage judges were asked to judge over two days and the event was stretched to being a three day competition. Teams were required to provide fence judges and the weather was fine. Teams attending were: Gore, Oamaru, Kaikoura, Kaiapoi, Kaitangata, Otaio, Otipua, Temuka, Waimate, Tapanui, Western Southland, Rakaia, Barr Hill, Halswell, Elderslie, Balclutha and Springston, with some branches entering two teams.

The competition was held at Kaikoura in 1975, with pouring rain on the first day. There were 27 teams and the rules were set out in detail with a few changes, and the first executive was elected: Mary Dalley, Joan McCall and George Letham. Advice was sought on excess entries and the meeting of delegates resolved that where a club received maximum entries then number two teams would be balloted out. Mr J Talbot, NZPCA president attended this meeting. In 1976 at Ashburton there were six dressage arenas for the first time and this being so successful the number was retained at all subsequent events. The cross-country was 40 kilometres away at Mt Hutt where the elements were appalling and the prizegiving was delayed until dinner. At the meeting of delegates there was discussion on the eligibility of reserve riders turning up for another branch, and the finer details of the executive were decided.

The 1977 event was run in tandem with the Inter-Pacific, being hosted by Springston and Waihora branches. This was the year the Wooden Spoon competition was first introduced where teams eliminated from the cross-country had a dressage and show-jumping competition and this required the introduction of a second show-jumping arena. The whole Tapanui, West Otago district was behind the 1978 event and 41 teams competed. It began with fine weather but by day three the show-jumps were water jumps and the scorers almost needed a boat to enter their building...! Blenheim hosted the 1979 event and the delegates decided that the competitors ages would be assessed as at 1 August. The silver tray donated by MacQueen jewelers would be presented to the second placed team, and discussion began for the notice of motion that in following years the executive appoint the technical delegate as they were finding that the technical delegates being selected lived hundreds of kilometres away from the event.

Geraldine hosted the 1980 event, held at Belfield. It was well organised and enjoyed fine weather. Waiau branch felt aggrieved about having to leave out one of their riders and borrow one of the right age to make them a team of four. Another contentious matter was the proposal to bar pony club members from competing in the Springston event who had competed at the NZPCA horse trials championships. This had been discussed at the very first meeting and it was felt scoring was by team so there was no reason to leave these riders out as they were looked upon as being role models, and should be able to help the younger members of their teams.

Rangiora in 1981 started another Springston tradition, a parade through the town of Rangiora. It was typical Springston weather all the way. 43 teams started but after the cross-country only 14 teams were still alive. The possibility of moving the event from August to May was bought up at the meeting but met with vigorous opposition as it would be in direct competition with the NZPCA horse trials.

Dunedin held the 1982 event at Tahuna Park and Wingati racecourse. This event was the first scored by computer and while the "older generation" offered some resistance to this change it proved a successful innovation. In 1983 the small Waimea branch near Nelson ran a successful event but Joan McCall was concerned at the number of riders who came in well under time and proposed these be penalised. She also expressed the feeling that too much emphasis was being placed on Springston Trophy and NZPCA horse trials championships. 68 teams attended the 1984 event at Oamaru, with the main venue the Oamaru racecourse and the cross-country course at Maheno, 40 Km south. The cross-country produced problems for the computer and junior riders, and sheep placed in a pen as part of a jump produced protests and appeals that were still being heard after dark and continuing the next morning.

In 1985 Invercargill hosted the first of their four events. The 1985 event was at the Invercargill showground with the cross-country 8 Kms away at Sandy Point. The teams and mounts paraded down the main street of Invercargill, the Mayor hosted a reception in honour of the event, and almost 1000 people enjoyed a "family" dinner at a local hotel. Eight branches from the Otago/Southland region wanted the event moved to the May school holidays and while voted for 53/49 it never eventuated. Kaikoura hosted the 1986 event, on the old riverbed at Wheatlands under the snow capped mountains. The nights were frosty but days fine. Delegates voted that vetted out teams could compete in the Wooden Spoon competition and any date change be left until the education system made its intentions known. The bright idea of a North/South competition with the top four teams from each island coming together for a final doesn't appear to have progressed.

The weather was perfect at the Ashburton showground and the cross-country course near Tinwald in 1987. Delegates set the entry fee at $36.00 and it was decided that clubs with no branches could borrow from another club. The 1988 venue was the Christchurch equestrian complex at McLeans Island. A monster disco was held and fences 4 and 5 produced problems on the cross-country. Delegates held a lengthy discussion on raising the age by one year, the first change in 16 years. At Waimate in 1989 the cross-country near Hunter used extremely long alternatives which when taken allowed no chance of making up time. By the time the juniors set off on the cross-country the river where the water jump was placed was swollen by melting snows and some of the smaller ponies that made it into the water would have been swimming. The delegates were asked for their views of the future of the competition and the feeling among them was that the fences were becoming too difficult.

It was back to Invercargill in 1990. The winning team at Waimate declared the Sandy Point course easier than the Waimate course but couldn't repeat their win. Joan McCall was re-elected (in her absence) to another term on the executive and tribute was paid to the great service, time and effort she put into the Springston Trophy. Rangiora hosted the 1991 event, with all elements held at the showground. While the cross-country course was well designed and beautifully finished again some of the obstacles seemed a little difficult for the average branch rider. North Otago used a new site at Campbell Park near Duntroon in 1992. Formerly a resident school, all the riders were accommodated on the property. The cross-country day was very cold and wet and the water jump on the river flats lost a ground rail down the river after an early rider went for a swim.

The Belfield course at Geraldine in 1993 was different from the 1980 course. The cross-country day was as usual very wet and spectators exhibited poor judgment by cutting farm fences to exit the grounds. Due to the poor weather only five teams did the show jumping. Delegates agreed to raise the age to 18 by a majority of 50/36. Delegates also modified the borrowing rule and raised entry fees to a total of $60.00. Blenheim designed a first class course in 1994 but not many teams jumped a clear round. Joan McCall was pleased that the course was doing what good course design should achieve: to catch the rider who was not concentrating but not eliminate them. 1995 saw a return to Invercargill and Sandy Point where the weather was rain, a bitterly cold Antarctic wind, and sunshine. 36 teams attended and 39 delegates attended the meeting where updated rules were ratified. The 25th anniversary of the competition in 1996 returned to the original host, Springston, with a challenging cross-country course at nearby Burnham Military Camp. Mrs Joan McCall was re-elected as Guardian and the idea of prize money was voted out by delegates.

Kaikoura was host in 1997 39 teams attended, with Moutere winning. The delegates attempted to pass rules changing the structure of the Guardians, all failed. In (1998) Forty-eight teams from throughout the Island competed at Clyde.The Cave Pony Club's five-strong Springston Trophy-winning team were Alysha Hutton 11 (Bobby Sox), Juliette Scott 11 (Glen Cae), Anna Squire 17 (capt) (Hullabaloo), Sarah Scott 13 (Rainbow Jackson), Nicola Squire 14 (Roble), and team manager Ann Smith. It was the first time in the Springston Trophy's 28-year history that it had been won by a South Canterbury team. Cave retained the 1999 Springston Trophy at Oamaru Racecourse in a very close competition with 47 other teams. All six riders finished on their dressage scores, the only team to do so. Team members were Sarah Scott (Captain) Michelle Laplanche, Sonia McKerchar, Juliet Scott, Kate Fisher and Sarah Hobson. Cave were sponsored by the Pleasant Point Hotel and for winning each got a ribbon, NRM wool covers for their ponies, a bag of Dunstan Feed, Equalen Paste and a backhouse coat. David Hutton from Pleasant Point was coach and Ann Smith from Cave the Manager. Belfast won the Wooden Spoon.

Canterbury pony club Springston won the 2000 Springston Trophy, at the Equestrian Centre in Otatara, near Invercargill. Riders were Lydia Meredith (Rural Delivery), Georgie Meredith (Merlin), Anna Sutherland (Danny), Claire Madden (Aratiki Shandell) and Sarah Bryan (Master Josh). The club fund-raised to the tune of $4000 for the trip south. The club last won in 1983 in Nelson. The top five teams were: Springston (93.25 penalties), West Melton Weedons Tartan (98.25), View Hill Red (101), Rakaia (114.25) and Hinds (115.75).

Nelson 2001 with 31 teams entered, held the dressage and show-jumping at Richmond Park and the cross-country at 88 Valley. The weather was good, the cross-country course not technically demanding, and the delegates confirmed remits to raise the age limits to 20 and 16 years of age, the rules for composite teams, and made changes to the criteria for the team managers cross-country walk. Hurunui 2002 had 42 teams entered. The weather was fine although blustery winds during dressage upset many teams. The cross-country course at "Duart" farm was a spectators dream with technically interesting jumps but difficulty getting accurate results frustrated many teams and required late night work to resolve. Hurunui was the first occasion the competition website was used to report scores on-line at regular intervals. The delegates were advised of an intention in 2003 to rethink the transfer rule, and Graham Barkman stood down from the Guardians, to be replaced by Mary Adams of Winton.

Hurunui Pony Club - 2002 The building of our course evolved over many years but specific jumps were built from January 2002 onwards.  Evan Moriarty was course designer assisted by Norm Avis. Evan was also the main course builder along with his son Richard and volunteer labour arranged where necessary. Most permanent jumps were completed by the end of April to allow for resowing grass, however the dry autumn actually prevented the grass from striking then the soil temp worked against us consequently a few bare patches were still evident come event time.
All staff had a laminated course or property plan so as to know where to go if called up. We did however run into a few problems with the scoring mainly due to the fact that a lot of the fence stewards had not attended the fence stewards meeting the night before and made basic errors that demanded a lot of interpreting in the scorer's room. Unfortunately some of these were not picked up by the computerized scoring system. I would strongly recommend that manual back up scoring always be done in conjunction to the computerized one. I sat up with Des Skene and two other volunteers that night and redid the scoring manually to try and sort out the problems until 1AM.

Belfast 2003 had 43 teams entered with the two youngest riders being only nine years old. The dressage & showjumping days were held at Rangiora A&P Grounds and the cross-country on their rally grounds at Chaneys Corner. The weather was reasonable Day 1, hot & dry Day 2 & as miserable as charity Day 3, requiring the closing ceremony to be dismounted in a sports pavilion, so delegates never found out if the highland pipe band would disturb the horses..! Several teams were diverted by road closures (snow) on their return home. The competition had live internet scoring, a private radio broadcast station for commentary [not successful] & an event launch on the Thursday night. John Holland stood down as Guardian to be replaced by Jan Swarbeck of Hurunui.

Ashburton 2004 had 46 teams entered including 16 composite teams. The Dressage and Show Jumping were held at the Ashburton A & P Show Grounds at the north end of town, and the Cross Country was held at the Rakaia Branch's course adjacent to the Rakaia River. The weather on dressage day changed from fine & cool in the morning to pouring rain in the afternoon. The weather for both jumping days was fine. At the delegates meeting Joan McCall was granted a life membership of Springston Trophy. A remit splitting the South Island into 3 regions, and the election by rotation of Guardians based on these 3 regions passed through its 1st vote. Ashburton's innovation of a web page allowing the advertising of spare riders or where riders were required for team numbers was voted to be continued.

Taieri 2005 Springston Trophy 2005 was hosted by Taieri District with the dressage and show jumping at the Mosgiel Taieri A & P grounds and the cross country at the Riverside property of Rob and Jean Johnstone. 43 teams were entered. Live scoring was a success thanks to Paul Sharp. The weather held for the entire competition which was won by West Melton Weedons Tartan.

Halswell 2006 had 44 teams entered including 19 composite teams. The weather was perfect for all days of competition & the Canterbury A&P showground's venue well prepared, Halswell having employed a professional management company to organise funding & facilities. At the delegates meeting Noel Griffin was replaced by Peter Goldsmith [Vice-president NZPCA] & Jan Swarbrick was re-elected Guardian IAW the new rules governing Guardians. Computerised scoring & website live updates operated successfully although the scoring sometimes published provisional results based on incomplete data to the alarm of team managers..!

Central Otago Pony Club 2007 saw Springston Trophy hosted by Central Otago Pony Club at the Cromwell Race Course. 42 teams entered including 15 composite teams. The grounds were in top condition with dressage getting of to a good start on time. Competition was strong in this phase with only a few points separating the top teams. Cross Country got underway the next day on the new course designed by John Carmichael and built by Robbie McLean. Seniors and Intermediates were tested by the course with placings changing significantly from the previous day. Whilst the junior track was basic it was ridden in trying conditions with gale force winds building towards the end of the day. On day 3 Wakatipu held a slender lead going into the show jumping. Through out this phase the lead changed 3 times with Wakatipu managing to hold on and secure the win.

North Canterbury 2008 was hosted by the North Canterbury Pony Club and its Eight Branches. The aim from the beginning was to keep the event simple and run it as cheap as possible. To achieve this it was decided that it would be hosted at the Northern A&P grounds, This was chosen as Rangiora Pony Club already had a XC course of the required heights, there were more than enough pipe dressage arenas and show jumps on the grounds. XC designer Sally Wigley and convener Simon Robinson brief was to design a XC that was fair, not eliminate too many riders but give a result as we believe the XC is the key phase of eventing. All three age groups jumped the same type of jumps yet the intermediate group had a lot of trouble. The course was made much more difficult on the day by Gale force Norwest winds. Show jumping was set up as had been done for SISJ Champs as this had proved successful for two years and was lead by Blue Clark. The Dressage was set up by the Northern dressage group lead by Denise Youngman, They had a series of warm up areas which they moved through as they got closer to there start time this seemed to work very well. The event Secretary Rhonda Gibson did an outstanding job. She only attended around 3 meetings due to moving out of the area. This was all helped by the use of email and proved not to be a problem. The event was won by Rangiora Pony Club who had been close to winning for the last three years.

Springston 2009 was hosted in Canterbury by Christchurch, North Canterbury and Hurunui Clubs. This came about due to Kaikoura having to pull out of hosting due to floods in 2008 destroying their XC. No replacements came forward at the 2008 AGM and it was left to the Guardians to look for a host. In November the Christchurch DC and North Canterbury President came up with a plan. This was to use some of the conveners from the 2008 committee, and add other conveners and personnel from Christchurch and Hurunui. It was decided it would be better to run it at the Equestrian Centre at McLean's Island. This was so it was at a different venue, even though it was in the same Area for the 3rd time in 4 years. To make this plan work it required the support of Eventing Canterbury and the Centre Committee. As Eventing Canterbury was about to upgrade the XC, it was hoped to make it a win win for Pony Club and Eventing. Both Eventing Canterbury and the Centre Committee were very supportive of the Plan all the way through. The main organisation was headed By the Ch Ch DC who had run ST06 and the NC President and Event Secretary who had just run ST08. This made the initial planning a lot easier as a lot of the paper work just needed altering and we had very current knowledge. Although the venue worked well for the event there were challenges. It was not designed to have a large number of people parking in team areas and also a large number of spectators and their cars. The XC proved to be the deciding phase again. But without the gale force winds of 2008 there was not as much trouble and about 80% of riders finished on live scores. Only three meetings were held with all conveners and the three people that made up the executive only met 5 times doing most of the work by email and phone. Wakatipu won, with Rangiora second and Eyreton in 3rd for the 3rd time.
Jan Swarbrick (Amberley) retired as a Guardian, and was replaced by Euan Muirson of North Canterbury.

2010 Patron, Joan Miller McCall (QSM) died on 3/12/2010, Southland PC has not filed a report- webmaster

2011 Kaikoura hosted the 2011 event, using South Bay Domain for the Dressage and Show Jumping phases and Nigel and Cathy Graham's property, The Greenburn, for the Cross-Country.
The 28 teams entered (12 of which were Composite) were welcomed to Kaikoura in beautiful sunshine. Dressage day dawned fine but overcast, perfect for team photos, and ran smoothly. Rain held off for the Cross-Country phase for all but the last dozen Intermediate riders. Feedback from the riders was that the Jenny Wards designed and built course was a good old fashioned cross-country with a good variety of jumps, using natural water features and logs to good effect, over rolling farm land. Misuse of team radio channels caused problems for course officials and St John on the day and the private use of radios should be looked at by future organizers. The rain cleared for the Show Jumping, which ran very quickly due to 3 rings. The sun shone again for the Prize Giving. Many teams even got home in time to watch the Rugby World Cup game on TV!
Amberley Gold team were the clear winners, Waihora/Halswell Composite - Runner Up, Waihora/Halswell Composite - Horse Mastership, Waihora/Halswell Composite - Dressage, View Hill Red - Wooden Spoon.
This was the first Springston Trophy to have Live Scoring, thanks to Peter Goldsmith, and Andrew Hill and his team.

2011 John Lavender appointed Patron

2012 Waihora Pony Club hosted Springston Trophy 2012 with 23 Teams (including 10 composite).
The Springston Trophy 2012 Committee put in many long hours to pull this event together. Halswell & Springston Pony Club's came on board to help with the Show Jumping phase which we were extremely grateful for. The weather was pretty good to us, except for the seniors when a Southerly came through in true Canterbury style on the Saturday afternoon. Seniors were warmed up to start their Cross Country phase, first rider in the start box - the wind blew & down came the rain & hail.
Being able to use the Motukarara Domain and the race course facilities worked out exceptionally well. The grounds for all three phases were in top condition. The Cross Country Course was the high light of the event, it looked amazing and rode extremely well. Feedback from officials and teams has been very positive.
Blue Clark has replaced Anne Atkins as a Guardian.
1st - View Hill Red. Runner Up - Amberley White. Dressage - View Hill Red. Horse Mastership - Halswell. Wooden Spoon - Otipua/Waimea/Greymouth Composite.

2013 North Otago Pony Club hosted Springston Trophy 2013 at the Oamaru Race Course from 4th - 6th October. 29 Teams attended which included 13 Composite Teams. 1 Team competed under the new Trial put in place by the Guardians. The Team was able to use this trial following them being unable to find another senior rider.
Following the successful hosting of NZPCA HT Champs in April 2012 hosted by ASCNO Area PC, North Otago Pony Club committed to building the lower to heights to put in place a full 4 height course. Robbie MacLean designed constructed the lower 2 heights and was welcomed back to North Otago to design this year's Springston Trophy XC Course. Many hours were devoted by a hard working committee and convenors preparing for each phase of the event. Once again North Otago turned on 'near perfect' weather. The only adverse weather was rain overnight on the Friday prior to the Cross Country Phase. This only made riders more vigilant in their riding of the course. The drizzle had however stopped before Cross Country actually began. Dressage and Show Jumping was held in the centre of the race track. Marshalling and check points ensured as smooth a process as possible was available for all teams to compete when required. The efficiency of the live scoring was thanks to Andrew Hill and Peter Goldsmith which ensured everyone could be kept up to date at all times. The Oamaru Race Course and their caretaker once again turned out a venue to be proud of. The grounds were in wonderful condition. A great venue and available for all Equestrian disciplines. The results spoke for themselves with a very tight battle right to the end for the winners and runners up.
1st - Amberley Gold. Runner Up - Eyreton Navy. Dressage - Eyreton Navy. Horse Mastership - Amberley Blue.
The Horse Mastership Judges specifically commended 3 other teams who deserved mention - Otipua/Waimea Composite Strath Taieri/Balclutha Composite and Halswell Red Wooden Spoon - Amberley Red

2014 Taieri District was approached to host Springston Trophy 2014 as no one had wished to hold it. The complete event was held in the small rural town of Middlemarch. 23 teams entered with 11 composite teams. TDPC offered meals each evening which were well attended. The weather was very variable - lovely hamburgers in the sun at the XC course at Lindsay Carruthers at 5pm Thursday night, bitterly cold winds but fine for dressage on the Friday at the Strath Taieri showgounds. Snow flakes cancelled any competition or chance of medical getting through on the Saturday!! Sunday was coolish then hot while, riders did both the show jumping and xc at the xc venue. The show jumping ran through one ring - seniors, intermediates and juniors. XC ran intermediates, juniors and seniors. Both finished within half an hour of each other. Prize giving was over by 3.30pm and the gale force Nor'westers set in. Eyreton Blue won the Springston Trophy and will host the next one.

2015 Eyreton. It was a weekend of fun and fierce competition as 41 pony club teams from around the South Island (and two from the North Island) competed for the coveted Springston Trophy. Approximately two hundred and thirty riders competed in teams of six comprising two seniors aged 18 – 24 years, two intermediates aged 15-17 years and two juniors aged 14 years and under. Some teams had only four riders made up of two of the categories, however they started with a 25 point penalty. Other teams were composites made up of riders from different branches and Clubs.
It was a technical cross Country course asking many of questions of the horse and rider and this was quickly realised as many of intermediate riders jumping 95cm had trouble early on at the Ray White houses combination, jump number 3. The junior riders jumping at 80 cm followed and with few issues, seemed to enjoy this track. The seniors jumping at 1.05m rode last rising to the challenge of the course with many riding clear. Again the weather was kind and conditions were perfect for the show jumping phase of the event. However the forecast was not good and with high winds predicted to arrive at lunch time the organisers moved quickly to keep the event on time. The riders rode well and performed at their best. However the show jumping proved to be crucial to the end results as the leader board changed once again.
Other prizes were also given. First place in dressage to View Hill White; Horse Mastership (a prize for overall presentation and sportsmanship) went to Okuku and the Wooden Spoon (a competition that runs for those teams who are eliminated after the cross country course) won by Eyreton Pony Club's other team Eyreton Turquoise. Eyreton Navy who had won the Springston Trophy in 2014 in Middlemarch defended their title and again hold the Trophy for 2015, with a slightly different line-up.

2016 AWATERE The beautiful districts of Flaxbourne and the Awatere hosted 37 teams from around the South Island including entries from the North Island. 184 riders competed to the best of their abilities.
Day One, the Dressage phase was a beautiful sunny day at the Ward domain that had been brought to life with the placement of many plants and flower pots. The View Hill team rode first and maintained a lead from start to finish.
The Cross country course at the picturesque property of Chris and Trish Redwood in Seddon proved to be a challenging course spread over lovely rolling hills surrounded by neighbouring vineyards which was offset by splashes of colour through the magnificent plantings of thousands of Spring flowers. There were minimal First Aid requirements but many riders did come to grief at the Talley’s water jump. The conditions were high overcast but pleasant for both Spectators and competitors.
Day three proved a challenge with a torrential downpour first thing creating havoc at the grounds with a lot of mud suddenly being cause for many a dirty horse although ground conditions for the show jumping phase held up well. The rain quickly lifted though to bring forth a lovely sunny late part of the morning through to the prize giving. Due to ground conditions and some teams wanting to make a hasty retreat home, an Unmounted Prize giving proceeded with the riders doing a wonderful lap of honour at a brisk canter without their horses!
Eyreton Navy was not to be a third time winner with View Hill Red taking the honours this year, with another View Hill team (White) coming in Third behind Eyreton Navy who settled for the second placing. A great effort all round. Also this year proved that the two age group penalty is not to be taken lightly as Pleasant Point Maroon placed 6th. The Horsemastership trophy was awarded to Spingston this year and Okuku took the honours of going home with the Wooden Spoons. Directly after the prize giving teams were very patient in waiting for their delightful tractor drivers to pull them from their allocated parking lots through to dry ground to make their safe journeys home from what had been a truly memorable Springston Trophy hosted by the very small but capable Awatere Pony Club.

2017 Rakaia After being granted the right to host Springston Trophy 2017, a small but enthusiastic committee began the organisation.
It was decided to hold the Dressage and Showjumping at the Rakaia Domain, and the Cross Country at the existing venue off Normanby Road. The course was completely redesigned by Richard Crowe, with many new jump combinations and a new water complex.
Thursday saw the teams official welcome and course walks at the Cross Country venue. International Eventer Clarke Johnstone was available to conduct riders course walks, and also a sponsors and invited guests course walk.
Forty teams entered, but with the late scratching of the Hurunui team, this saw 39 teams take to the start line on Dressage Day. View Hill Red took out the day with a score of 111.75, while there was only 6.34 marks between the next seven teams.
Unfortunately it drizzled all day on Saturday. The Senior and Intermediate riders rode the Richard Crowe designed course well, with the exception of the first water complex. The Junior riders found the course somewhat challenging.
Twenty Nine teams turned up on a very wet drizzly day for the final day of showjumping. The Geoff Bryant designed courses created a few problems, but all in all rode well considering the conditions underfoot. The View Hill riders incurred some rails, which saw the final placings change.
The weather cleared enough to have a mounted prizegiving. Congratulations to Halswell Crusaders for taking the competition out (they carried their dressage score to the end), with View Hill coming second and third. North Otago Navy took out the Wooden Spoon. Also congratulations to View Hill White for being judged the Horsemastership winners. An additional prize of an imported bridle was donated by Foveaux Equestrian for the lucky back number which was won by Amalita Hay from the Waimea team.
The committee would like to thank all the competitors and support crews for their conduct during the entire event. Thank you to all our sponsors, we could not have managed without their support. A special thank you to Mitavite who were our major sponsors.

2018 - North Otago Pony Club were incredibly proud to host Springston Trophy 2018. We ended up with 40 teams competing and thankfully the weather played it's part and the event ran very smoothly.
We held all three phases at the Oamaru Race Course with the dressage and showjumping in the middle ground of the race track and the cross country on the land around the race course that is co-managed by the race course and NOPC. Thanks to the huge effort of Richard and Aliesa Hardwick, our cross country course was spectacular and while challenging, it was also fair. Our small, and largely new, committee learned a lot and were very well supported by the officials. While all the officials were fantastic to work with, special mention should be made of John Carmichael and Ron Miles (TD and assistant TD), Lindsay Carruthers and Glen Morris (Cross Country judge and assistant cross country judge), as well as the Springston Guardians who provided guidance in the face of our inexperience.
Congratulations to the View Hill Red team who took out first place, Halswell Crusaders who were a very close second and Waihora Zonkeys who won the wooden spoon. We were incredibly proud of our own two teams - North Otago Red who placed third and North Otago/ Waimea Navy who placed 7th. A huge congratulations must also go to all riders, managers and coaches who displayed excellent sportsmanship throughout the event. This epitomises what Pony Club is all about.
Of course none of this would have been possible without the support of our sponsors. We remain incredibly appreciative of Mitavite who were our premier sponsor and their early commitment to the project was invaluable. We also received huge support from the Lions Foundation, NZ Community Trust, the Otago Community Trust and Youthtown. We were also overwhelmed by the support from our community in terms of sponsorship - there were so many who contributed, but special mention must be made of Road Metals / Kiwi Concrete and De Geest Construction. We wish Halswell all the best for hosting in 2019.

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