A "shemozzle" at a Horse of the Year extravaganza left a 13-year-old dancer injured after a collision with a pony.

The incident occurred on the Friday Night Extravaganza before several hundred people.

Medics rushed to the aid Brianna Sunley, a member of a Rezpect Dance Academy crew, who were due to perform as part of the show.

The group had started performing, but a technical malfunction with the music caused them to head to the side of the arena, where ponies were doing a victory lap.


Sunley says she does not remember much, just snippets.

"I remember waking up on the ground and seeing lots of people around me. I remember trying to get up but falling back down and then I remember waking up in a trailer with the medics and I couldn't see anything."

She received a concussion, bruising across her body and a bump to the head, but returned to school on Wednesday.

Her brother, Kalib, who was in the other dance crew, saw the events unfold.

"I guess I really went into shock and as soon as I realised it was her, I ran straight to her and did as much as I could do comfort her."

Her father, Paul Sunley, says despite the incident he does not hold any animosity towards Horse of the Year.

He said he had spoken to HOY director Dave Mee several times.

Rezpect Dance Academy crew members perform after one of the dancers was injured when she and a pony collided. Photo / Duncan Brown
Rezpect Dance Academy crew members perform after one of the dancers was injured when she and a pony collided. Photo / Duncan Brown

"From speaking with Dave and the fact that they have acknowledged there were definitely some lapses in judgment, I am more than happy.


"He has taken responsibility for it and that's all you can really ask for."

Hundreds of people witnessed the event, and many left after being told the programme had been cancelled.

The show did go on, however, including the performance from Rezpect Dance Academy.

One witness said it appeared horses were passing the grandstand in a second lap when the incident happened in front of hundreds of spectators, many of whom left after HOY officials decided the programme was over.

"It was a shemozzle," the witness said.

Another witness said the dancers had been in the middle of the arena while the horses were doing a victory lap when the dancers suddenly moved to the side.

"And BAM! a horse and a child collided."

Mee said HOY officials understood the incident had caused a level of distress and trauma to the children and parents involved.

"The health and safety of all our event participants and spectators is of paramount importance and we would like to assure everybody that the matter will be brought to the attention of WorkSafe."

"The show itself will hold an independent review to ensure that such an incident will not occur again."