Numbers were up at Central Hawke's Bay's equestrian version of the Winter Olympics at the weekend, raising nearly $20,000 for some good causes.
For a ninth year, Waipukurau showjumper Claire Wilson hosted the fundraising showjumping competition at her family's Mt Herbert Farm on Porangahau Rd on Saturday, to raise funds for Flemington School and the Hawke's Bay Rescue Helicopter Trust.
Wilson said riders came from as far as Gisborne and the Wairarapa to compete.
"We had 180 in all which is up from last year and just short of that 200-rider mark. We were so lucky with the weather - there wasn't a drop of rain, which was fantastic - and there was no drama, so it went really well."
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The title class at the Winter Olympics was the BWR Grand Prix 95cm event, won by 15-year-old Anna Rasmussen from Havelock North, riding her new horse, The Prospector.
But Wilson said it was more about providing a fun day for riders of all ages - with the bonus of some major prizes from sponsors.
"We had some little 2-year-olds riding, right up to parents, so it was just an awesome atmosphere with lots of smiling faces."
Wilson is still tallying up the final amount but hopes to match the $19,000 raised by last year's event.
"That's what we are aiming for. We've just got a couple of bills to pay and a couple of payments to come in, but we're really hopeful."