Article by Lisa Potter

JUST one percent separated the top three riders in today’s FEI Intermediate II, at the Kelt Capital Horse of the Year in Hastings, but Cambridge’s Charlott Bayliss inched ahead to win on 62.73%.
Close behind was Raglan’s Jody Hartstone with Donnerwind 5 on 61.89% and Karen Anderson (Whakatane) with Komplete Kaos on 61.47%.
Bayliss rode a mistake free test to maintain her lead, and will be keen to keep her consistency heading into tomorrow’s FEI Grand Prix test, the first of the title classes.
Scores from tomorrow’s Grand Prix test and Sunday’s rich Musical Freestyle, with a prize purse of $30,000, will determine who wins the prestigious Horse of the Year title.
One of the hot contendors for the HOY title is Hartstone’s other stallion, Landioso, who was scratched from today’s class. He will compete tomorrow and heads into the competition hot on the heels of winning the recent Bates National Grand Prix Title.

Dressage’s only two Olympic riders battled it out in the arena today, for the first of the title classes at Advanced level and a shot at winning the overall Horse of the Year title.
Kallista Field (Pahiatua) with Waikiwi took the class by less than one percent, winning with 66.94%, just ahead of Louisa Hill (Clevedon) with Bates Antonello on 66%.
Field riding her imported stallion Salutation, was third on 64.52%, a smidgeon ahead of Lisa Blackbourn (Kumeu) with her Dutch stallion Prestige VDL on 64.15%.
These four performed expressive, extravagant tests and tomorrow’s class promises to be highly competitive, deciding who wins the HOY title.

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