Liz Halliday’s 3 Day Eventing season began in fine style last weekend as she secured impressive fifth and 11th places in the 100-strong field at the CIC* event at Barroca d’Alva.
The California-born, British-based dual sportswoman’s results were even more notable by the fact that her horse Donovan (Intrepid), who finished fifth, was making his CIC* debut and that she had never competed with Bluey (Ease a Blaze) before.
Donovan made a stunning start to the Dressage test on Friday, tying for third place overall ahead of the Cross Country phase. A clear round with just 2.8 time faults kept their challenge alive and a clear Show Jumping round saw them cement a fine top-five finish.
Having taken a maiden victory last season in the Novice Class at the Eridge Horse Trials, Donovan’s result in Barroca represented a promising move up to International competition for the young horse.
“He was fantastic,” enthused Halliday. “There are so many positives to take from this performance. It’s the first time he’s ever Show Jumped after the Cross Country phase and he was incredible. I am very excited about the future and delighted that my hard work with him is paying off.”
Halliday also competed with Bluey, a horse owned by her trainer and New Zealand Olympian Joe Meyer. Lying 16th after a strong Dressage, an excellent Cross Country round lifted him to sixth overall, while one rail down in the Show Jumping left him just outside the top ten in 11th.
“He was excellent in all three phases and after the Cross Country I was fifth and sixth overall which, in a field of 100 horses, was very pleasing,” Halliday said. “We had one rail down on the Show Jumping, but considering I have never competed on him before I thought he jumped really well.”
Halliday will stay in Portugal this week as both horses will now compete in the International CCI* competition at Barroca this weekend. The event will see Donovan step up another level for his first CCI, but Liz is confident he will continue to shine.
“We’ve had an awesome weekend and a great start to the year and I’d like to thank my sponsors Nupafeed and Equine Superstore for their support in the build up and during the event,” she said. “The competition will be even tougher in the CCI* next weekend, but I’m confident that both horses will comfortably compete at that level. Perhaps I’ll try and target a first and second place finish!”
For more details on Liz Halliday, please visit www.lizhalliday.com.