Olympian Jones aims for home-town success

May 2, 2009

Olympic silver medallist Megan Jones will be looking to increase her lead in the 2009 HSBC FEI World Cup Eventing series this weekend, with the next round getting under way today on her home ground in Sydney.

Jones rode the home-bred 15.3hh grey Kirby Park Irish Jester to victory in the first round of the series, at Kihikihi in New Zealand last month. The combination finished fourth individually at the Olympics in Hong Kong last year.

Jones hopes to travel to the World Cup Final at Strzegom, Poland, but she faces hot completion - Australia has a great record in this series. Jones's Olympic team mate Clayton Fredericks has won the final twice and Australian rider Kevin McNab led the standings last year.

The field at Sydney includes Hong Kong team-mate Shane Rose who is three-handed, with his Olympic silver medallist All Luck, who just ducked out across country in Kihikihi when lying second after dressage, plus Cleddau Bobby Dazzler and Sarjaes Skitzmix.

There's also dual Olympic gold medalist Stuart Tinney on Vettori, the horse he campaigned in Europe last year, and the experienced Olivia Bunn, the highest-placed Australian rider at the 1998 and 2002 FEI World Equestrian Games, on GV Bullwinkle.

Clarke Johnstone, winner of Kihikihi in 2007, is travelling over to Sydney with his winning mount, Oakley Vision, fifth at Kihikihi this time, in the hope of snatching back victory from the Australians. Australian-based New Zealand Blair Richardson rides Spend Up in the round, and in the two-star contest Lizzie Brown rides Henton Attorney General, and Johnstone starts his other horse, Orient Express. Fellow Kiwi Claire Tasker riding Specialty completes the New Zealand lineup.