More Than Your Regular Picnic

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Hundreds at the finish line of the Triple Peaks Challenge in Hawke's Bay today got more than they bargained for when showjumper Vicki Wilson jumped Showtym Spotlight over a picnic table – complete with picnickers.

The stunt, a promotion for Saturday’s People’s Day at the NRM Horse of the Year Show, is a small taster of what everyone can expect when the cross country phase of the eventing moves to the showgrounds.

Thousands are expected at HOY to be part of the thrilling Olympic Games style action.

HOY show director Kevin Hansen says it will be the closest people will get to feeling they are watching the cross country at the Olympics.

Event organisers have put a huge focus on creating a People’s Day around the new cross country course at the Hawke’s Bay Showgrounds so that the many spectators can come and watch what promises to be an event packed with fun, action and suspense.

As part of encouraging spectators to come along to People’s Day, a special discounted family ticket of $35 (plus booking fee) for two adults and two children (15 and under) will be on sale only at the grounds from 12.30pm on Saturday. Entry for all children is just $5 (plus booking fee). 

“We know how important it is to make the show as affordable as possible for Hawke’s Bay families so they can bring their children and picnic in the Waikoko Gardens, right in the heart of the action as horses and riders take on the water jumps through the beautiful Waikoko Lake,” says Hansen.

“There will be plenty of space and a big screen so everyone can watch other jumps.”

The entire show will come to a standstill at 2pm to watch the action.

The cross country event is expected to attract a record crowd and is a real draw-card for attracting the “not-so-horsey” to the event.

“We wanted to do more to bring the people of Hawke’s Bay to Horse of the Year, so everyone can enjoy and take part in the greatest event of the show,” says Hansen.

Cross country course designer John Nicholson, brother of the world’s number one eventer Andrew Nicholson, says people will love watching because the course has been built for spectators while testing horse and rider. 

A team of experts have created the cross country course using timber, logs and stumps from trees that have blown down during the year. Adding to the excitement will be other spectacular feature fences including a huge picnic table in the oval.


PHOTO CAPTION: Vicki Wilson jumps Showtym Spotlight over a picnic table at the Havelock Domain in the build up to Saturday’s cross country which is being held at the Hawke’s Bay Showgrounds. Calmly taking it all in are (from left) Kirsty Wagstaff, Amanda Wilson and Ellie Bestwick. Photograph by Kelly Wilson