To compete in the Dressage at Farmlands Horse of the Year is the focus for over two hundred and fifty riders from the beginning of every season. There's something slightly manic but alluring about this event that induces riders to love and be part of it at every level.
An extensive programme includes pony classes for the younger competitors right through to the International Grand Prix competitions for riders hoping to kick start the complex qualification process for Dressage at The 2024 Olympics.
The 2014 Grand Prix horse of the Year title winner Airthrey Highlander (aka Bowie, owned by Linda Moughan) will defend his title but this time in the very capable hands of twenty year old Anya Noble (daughter of Bill who guided Bowie to last year's big win). Anya has quickly formed a great partnership with this horse so it's going to be all eyes on the Landrover Arena with a great contest in store. North Island Grand Prix Champions Julie Brougham and Vom Feinsten will be looking to add this HoY title to their trophy cabinet as will the ever improving Taranaki duo of Abbie Deken and the spunky chestnut KH Ambrose. Penny Castle and Magnus Spero have had limited competition so far this season following their Sydney campaign, but Penny is always a strong competitor at nay level, while Cambridge's Bill Millar and Raukauri Satouri have emerged as a pair to be reckoned with this season too – you need to be there to witness this battle of the Grand Prix exponents – especially in the Sunday morning Freestyle to Music.
The International Classes also offer a CDIY – an international completion for the 16-21 yr olds and this looks to be a great encounter too. Catherine West and Anarocz, winners in 2014 will be back despite missing the first part of the season and will also line up with Amici II. Oakura by the beach is horse haven for many Taranaki riders and another young rider from the region, Molly Lumb, will line up on KH Arvan – a previous Grand Prix winner at the event. Arvan is now retired from this level but is doing a grand job teaching Molly the trade under the guidance of owner Vanessa Way. Ohaupo's Mikayla Woods and the imported irish thoroughbred Ramsbury have been working hard towards this goal have been performing consistently well in the lead up.
There are too many exciting combinations emerging to mention them all, but a stand out this season has been the Matthews Hanoverians (MH suffix) progeny including the classy déjà VU MH (owned and ridden by Wendi Williamson) in FEI Intermediate level, Decandance MH, Dante MH and Diva's Glory MH.
Farmlands Horse of the Year is also the culmination of the Zilco North Island Freestyle to Music Series. Bonus points at this event adding an exciting dimension with the possibility for combinations to considerably improve their Leaderboard rankings.
The judging panel has a European component with FEI 4* Victoire Mandl, from Austria, plus FEI 5* Susie Hoevenaars Australia who will chair the International team alongside fellow Victorian FEI 4* Jane Ventura and NZL's Sue Hobson, Helen Hughes-Keen and Betty Brown.
Dressage in the main oval will be dominated by musical freestyles – horses and riders having a chance to express their personality in the artistic section, but also requiring strong technical skills to score well in front of such an experienced panel of judges.


Entries accepted from 1st December 2014.Entries can be submitted online through Equestrian Entries.

Dressage schedule please click link.

Dressage conditions click link.

Dressage form to be completed by ALL competitors and forwarded to Chris Paston - [email protected]  or PO Box 93, Bayview, Napier 4153.

Notice from ESNZ Dressage to all competitors competing in multi-discipline events on the same Horse or Pony at HOY

Special Conditions Applying to Dressage Competitors competing in more than one Discipline or Section


If you are competing on a horse or pony in dressage at HOY and will also compete on that horse or pony in another discipline please ensure you are completely familiar with the “Field of Play” for the dressage competition.  Within the dressage “Field of Play” all ESNZ rules apply. The dressage Field of Play at HOY 2015 is:


  • The entire area of the POLO GROUNDS
  • Any area of the main showgrounds used by combinations to warm up for their dressage test whether the test be on the polo grounds or in the main dressage oval.


If a combination is competing in another discipline/section prior to their dressage test, they may warm up for competitions in the other discipline/section using equipment permitted for that discipline/section.  Once they have competed in the other discipline/section, the non-permitted dressage equipment may not be used for further training/ warm up. The non-permitted dressage equipment must be changed as soon the horse/pony has completed the class/competition in the other Discipline and a Dressage competition is the horse/pony's next scheduled competition.  


Please make sure your horse or pony does not wear any equipment that is not permitted under the ESNZ dressage rules within the dressage Field of Play.  For example, if you are competing in a showing class and using a double bridle but you are also competing in a dressage class and NOT permitted to use a double bridle, make sure you remove the double bridle BEFORE entering the dressage Field of Play.  If you enter or are within the Dressage Field of Play in Non-permitted equipment and you are competing in a dressage class, you will be eliminated from the dressage class.



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We wish to thank the following photographers for their images used on this website (all images are subject to copywright rules and regulations):

  • Barbara Thomson
  • Diana Black Design
  • Kampic Photography
  • Take the Moment

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