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NEWS > Dressage
Posted by Equestrian New South Wales on 11/04/2022.
Gaylene Lennard on Jan Johnson

Crossing the ditch with Jax

By Suzt Jarratt

Travelling a horse from New Zealand to Australia might only be a hop, skip and a jump compared to flying to Germany – but it still requires extensive preparation.

Gaylene Lennard and Jax are shortly embarking upon their trip to the CDLite.

“When I got an MER of 69.804% in Taupo recently it was only my second time riding GP,” said the former show rider, who lives on a dairy farm in Te Aroa in the Waikato on NZ’s North Island.

This CDI event was the only one in her country where riders had an opportunity to achieve a Minimum Eligibility Requirement score for August’s WEG in Herning, Denmark.

Jax Johnson (by Johnson x A La Mode x Anamour) is a 12-year-old NZL-bred warmblood. “I’ve been seriously riding dressage for the last ten years,” explained Gaylene, “before that I played around with it to help with the show horses’ movement. I flew a couple in the past to Australia when hacking at Werribee.”

To prepare Jax for his journey Gaylene has changed his diet to a feed which may be replicated in Australia. “He normally has Dunstan’s which isn’t available over there. And I’ve also reduced his paddock time. He’s only out for an hour and a half which displeases him. He’s a Kiwi horse who eats grass and I understand his annoyance,” said his rider, who will be arriving in Sydney with her groom, Tessa Calder, a day before Jax.

After his three-hour flight from Auckland on April 19 she will meet him and they will all stay at the SIEC grounds in Horsley Park, the site of the CDLite which begins on April 27.

Whether they venture further afield will depend upon how Jax travels and the outcome of their performance flying the New Zealand flag in Sydney.

“If I go OK and get an MER I might consider it – one step at a time.”

Tickets are now on sale, details are on the Sydney CDI website - click here for information on tickets

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