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Paull shows first title was no fluke


GISBORNE pony rider Amelia Paull’s shock win at the Poverty Bay A&P Show was no fluke.

The 15-year-old has earned another title in the Country TV Pony Grand Prix, this time at the Dannevirke A&P Show.

Paull is in her debut season of the grand prix and she’s only been with her pony, Envious Edition, since August.

Now she’s a shot at qualifying for the Horse of the Year meet, New Zealand’s premier equestrian event.

Paull is 24th on the leaderboard and would need to get into the top 20 to be sure of her place in the prestigious Hawke’s Bay event in March. She hopes to ride well enough in Masterton and Feilding this month to qualify in the Pony of the Year category.

Paull’s win at the Poverty Bay show in October was the stuff of dreams, the triumph with Envious Edition coming in just their third show together.

In Dannevirke last weekend, it was close.

Six riders went clear in the first round.

In a jump-off against the clock, three went clear again and Paull had the quickest time.

Paull and Envious Edition stopped the clock at 36.09 seconds, with Lily Moore (Havelock North) and Showtym Highlight on 36.29s and third-placed Samantha Carrington (Takapau) on Colours of Lansing coming home in 36.93s.

Paull said her mindset was to “go clear and quick ­— go for gold”.

The relationship with her pony, also aged 15, was going especially well for such a new combination.

It’s been a remarkable rise for the teenager. In her four grand prix events this season, including the Larsen premier show in Gisborne last month, she has always picked up points.

Encouraged by John Larsen to get a suitable pony for the grand prix in the first place and then by trainer Andrew Scott after a few lessons on Envious Edition, Paull is chasing more points before the season wraps up.

RIDING HIGH: Amelia Paull has won two grand prix events in her debut season. Picture by Paul Rickard