Cyclone Gita was no deterrent for the many competitors who travelled long distances to compete at the American Quarter Horse Association's 39th National Show held in Hawera last week.

Show manager Jan Robinson said it did cause a few problems on the show management side with loss of power on the Wednesday morning, but they got the show on the road pretty close to the scheduled starting time despite the hiccups.

Competitors who were staying at the grounds when the storm hit all worked together to make sure horses and everyone were safe.

Judge Michael Ochetto from the United States had flown into Taranaki when the storm hit.
Local riders Catherine Ladd, Kerrin Coleman and Niki Perrett held the flag high for Taranaki, winning and placing highly in their classes and taking home a number of golden horse trophies.


Other local riders were Lisa Banks, Hollie and Rebecca Bruce, Imogen Perrett, Ella McNeice and Kayla Coleman. Kayla has just graduated from competing in walk, jog classes into Junior Youth and was the youngest junior youth competitor at the show.

This year a Pink Ribbon Timed Trail event was added to the National Show schedule with the entry money raised is being donated to the Breast Cancer Foundation.

Jan said that they raised $185 from entries.

She said they chose the Breast Cancer Foundation because a few of their Quarter Horse members have been diagnosed with breast cancer. Hannah Selman was one of the competitors, riding her horse RQH Isle Be Back.

Hannah's mum Debbie was a long time Quarter Horse member who showed true sportsmanship and encouragement to her fellow competitors. Hannah follows on with her mum's passion for the Quarter Horse breed.

The event with the largest entries of the show was the Senior Horse Trail with 31 horses entered and sponsored by Max Pennington Autocity.

Jan said the whole show was a great success and it was fantastic to see so many people who had travelled up from the South Island to compete at the Nationals.

"Nationals is our most prestigious event for the season and a lot of time and effort goes into training the horses.

"We are extremely grateful to all our generous sponsors who have helped towards the costs."