Equestrian Australia’s high performance jumping manager, Todd Hinde, flew into Wellington last week for this Saturday’s FEI $150,000 Nations Cup CSIO 4* and he’s giving the stage at the Winter Equestrian Festival to three newcomers.
“It’s probably a greener team than the previous teams that we’ve had,” said Todd. “Katie Laurie is our experienced rider here and then we have three riders in their first Nations cup team.” James Arkins riding Euro Star, Lauren Balcomb riding Verdini D’Houtveld Z and David Cameron riding Oaks Come by Chance are the new trio.
“We’ve got plenty of riders around at the moment,” said Todd. “These three riders have got quality horses coming up and giving these riders exposure and experience in team environments and the chance to jump in a Nations cup is always extremely important.”
Mexico – among the 12 nations competing – is also combining youth with experience. Eugenio Garza Perez and Carlos Hank Guerreiro find themselves on a team with riders they have looked up to in their youth.
“Nicolas [Pizarro] and Enrique [Gonzalez] are two riders that I’m sure both of us grew up admiring and knowing for a long, long time,” said Eugenio Garza. “This guy [Carlos Hank] is like a brother to me. The team spirit is pretty good. We are close teammates.”
For Carlos Hank, it is a chance to represent Mexico on the same team as his longtime trainer. “Enrique has been my trainer for 12 years now and I’ve been looking up to him for a long time. We have a great crowd, all the grooms around here come to support and family and friends come for this week also. To be on a team with friends and mentors, it is very special.”
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