Tom McDermott and Elegance De La Charmille – 2019 Australian Senior Champions
Above: Tom McDermott and Elegance De La Charmille
The final event and the culmination of five days of fantastic competition at the Pryde’s EasiFeed Australian Jumping Championships was this afternoon’s Pryde’s EasiFeed Senior Title Final, held at the beautiful Boneo Park on the Mornington Peninsular.
The competition kept the large and enthusiastic crowd enthralled right until the very end, when a new Australian Senior Champion was crowned.
Round 1 of the Championship was conducted on Thursday morning as a speed class and provided an exciting start to proceedings. Tom McDermott and his pair of mares, Alpha Activity and Elegance De La Charmille filled the first two places, with former two-time Australian Champion David Cameron and Finch Farm Clifford filling third. With less than three seconds separating the next seven placings, we knew this competition was going to be a close one and it sure did deliver. All the placegetters from Round 1 are listed below.
Tom Dermott and Alpha Activity
CLASS 7: Pryde’s EasiFeed – Australian Senior Championship Round 1 – 1.40m
The first ten placegetters in this class were:
|1st||Tom McDermott||Alpha Activity|
|2nd||Tom McDermott||Elegance De La Charmille|
|3rd||David Cameron||Finch Farm Clifford|
|4th||Katie Laurie||Cera Caruso|
|5th||Jamie Kermond||Yandoo Oaks Constellation|
|6th||Olivia Hamood||Jane Fonda DVD|
|8th||Chris Chugg||PSS Levilensky|
|9th||Amber Fuller||CP Aretino|
|10th||Brooke Langbecker||Quintago 1|
Round 2 was held on Friday in weather conditions that proved challenging to all combinations, however, class and experience came to the fore with all three placegetters having international experience. First was Katie Laurie and her stunning grey stallion Casebrooke Lomond, followed by Chris Chugg and PSS Levilensky. Third place was filled by 2018 WEG team member Jamie Kermond and Yandoo Oaks Constellation. Official placings for the Second Round are listed below.
Katie Laurie and Casebrooke Lomond
Chris Chugg and PSS Levilensky
CLASS 20: Pryde’s EasiFeed – Australian Senior Championship Round 2 – 1.50m
The first ten placegetters in this class were:
|1st||Katie Laurie||Casebrooke Lomond|
|2nd||Chris Chugg||PSS Levilensky|
|3rd||Jamie Kermond||Yandoo Oaks Constellation|
|6th||Tom McDermott||Elegance De La Charmille|
|7th||Clay Simmonds||Oaks Castanza|
|8th||Elliott Reeves||Aveden Indigo|
|9th||Billy Raymont||Anssioso Z|
|10th||Tom McDermott||Alpha Activity|
As this was one of the major championships to be decided at this year’s Titles, the Championship scoring system was used. For a summary of how this system works please click HERE, where it is explained as part of our report on the Horseland Australian Junior Championship.
We were told by the commentator that under the present scoring system there had never been such a bunched field and there was no reason to doubt him. Two combinations were tied in the lead on zero penalties, being Tom McDermott and Elegance De La Charmille and Jamie Kermond and Yandoo Oaks Constellation. They were followed by another two combinations on just one penalty – Tom McDermott again and Alpha Activity and Chris Chugg and PSS Levilensky. As is that was not enough, a further 11 combinations were within just two rails of the lead. The competition in today’s final was going to be hot. Here is the full list of all “Carry Forward Penalties” going into the final.
|Tom McDermott||Elegance De La Charmille||31||27||58||0||0|
|Jamie Kermond||Yandoo Oaks Constellation||28||30||58||0||0|
|Tom McDermott||Alpha Activity||33||23||56||2||1|
|Chris Chugg||PSS Levilensky||25||31||56||2||1|
|David Cameron||Finch Farm Clifford||30||21||51||7||3|
|Elliott Reeves||Aveden Indigo||22||25||47||11||5|
|Katie Laurie||Cera Caruso||29||17||46||12||6|
|Clay Simmonds||Oaks Castanza||19||26||45||13||6|
|Olivia Hamood||Jane Fonda DVD||27||16||43||15||7|
|Katie Laurie||Casebrooke Lomond||9||33||42||16||8|
|Brooke Langbecker||Quintago 1||23||18||41||17||8|
|Billy Raymont||Anssioso Z||15||24||39||19||9|
|Amber Fuller||Cp Aretino||24||11||35||23||11|
|Gabrielle Kuna||Cera Cassiago||13||22||35||23||11|
|James Mooney||JB Evolution||18||13||31||27||13|
|Hayley Morris||Balmoral Henton||12||19||31||27||13|
|Amanda Madigan||Diamond B Vivienne||17||14||31||27||13|
A large crowd gathered, completely encircling the main arena, as one by one the combatants attempted the challenging course. Only one combination, Katie Laurie and Casebrooke Lomond, were able to go clear. Seven took single rails, five took two rails and a handful took more than two, to drop them out of contention. Of the leading bunch, McDermott and Elegance De La Charmille took just a rail to be alone in the lead on 4 penalties. Chugg and PSS Levilensky did the same to move to five. Unfortunately for the other two main contenders, McDermott and Alpha Activity and Jamie Kermond and Yandoo Oaks Constellation, they each took 3 rails to move them on to 13 and 12 penalties respectively.
Jamie Kermond and Yandoo Oaks Constellation
After a short break to rebuild the course, we moved into the second round, where only the top 15 combinations were invited to compete and as if it was possible, the competition grew more intense, as the race for a share of the $20,000 prize money on offer heated up.
With most of the early combinations either going clear or taking just a single rail, there was little change to the order. Ninth out, McDermott and Alpha Activity went clear to claim the lead on 13 penalties, with just five combinations left. Olivia Hamood and Jane Fonda DVD were next. A clear round left them in the lead on just 11 penalties. Experienced local, Russell Johnstone and Daprice did exactly the same to give us a pair of leaders with just three combinations to come.
Olivia Hamood and Jane Fonda DVD
Russell Johnstone and Daprice
The first round clear combination of Katie Laurie and Casebrooke Lomond were next. Starting on eight, the pressure was on to again go clear and retain the lead. They could not emulate their first round performance and a single rail took them to 12, just one behind the joint leaders.
As Chris Chugg and PSS Levilensky cantered into the arena, the crowd grew silent. Starting on five penalties, he could take a rail and still take over the lead, however, a clear round would really put the pressure on McDermott. Unfortunately for them and to the groans of the enthralled spectators, Chugg and “Levi” took not one, but two rails, relegating him to sixth.
So it came down to one last ride to determine the Championship. Looking back to last year, this was almost the identical situation that McDermott and Elegance De la Charmille were in last year. They were last out in the final, needing a clear round, but a rail at the first handed the title to Amber Fuller and CP Aretino. This year, he was leading by seven penalties, so a single rail would not matter. But two would!
If the crowd hushed to watch Chugg, then they went even quieter as the clock for McDermott counted down.
McDermott started the round confidently, taking extra care at the first, which was the one that got him last year. Safely over it, one by one the fences were conquered and at each, the excitement grew in the crowd.
As they approached the last, which was the Pryde’s EasiFeed oxa placed in front of the VIP viewing area, the excitement grew and the crowd collectively held their breath. There was scarcely any movement in the crowd as they watched McDermott and “Charmille” sail high and clear over it and take the final few strides to victory. It was a sweet victory for McDermott. After winning his first in 2012, McDermott had taken his second Australian Senior Title, which he had wait 12 months for to make up for his disappointment from last year.
McDermott was presented with the Len McVean Memorial Trophy and the largest share of the prize money. He also wins A Tulara Warmblood foal generously donated by Mark Fraser at Tulara Warmbloods, which we know is going into good hands.
After the presentation Australian Jumping caught up with McDermott and Elegance De La Charmille for a few words. McDermott said that “it was a real pressure ride” and that “Charmille loves pressure”. He said that he “had taken extra care at the first after last year which he was happy had paid off.” As for “Charmille”, she had nothing to say, no doubt thinking about the World Cup and the next round of AJTL at Sale in two weeks time!
Here is a list of the final results in the Championship
CLASS 46: Pryde’s EasiFeed – Australian Senior Championship FINAL – 1.50/1.60m
The first fifteen placegetters in this class were:
|1st||Tom McDermott||Elegance De La Charmille|
|=2nd||Olivia Hamood||Jane Fonda DVD|
|4th||Katie Laurie||Casebrooke Lomond|
|5th||Tom McDermott||Alpha Activity|
|6th||Chris Chugg||PSS Levilensky|
|9th||Elliot Reeves||Aveden Indigo|
|10th||Billy Raymont||Anssioso Z|
|11th||Amanda Madigan||Diamond B Vivienne|
|12th||Katie Laurie||Cera Caruso|
|13th||Brooke Langbecker||Quintago 1|
|14th||David Cameron||Finch Farm Clifford|
|15th||Jamie Kermond||Yandoo Oaks Constellation|
Australian Jumping congratulates Tom McDermott and Elegance De La Charmille for their fantastic performance as well as the rest of the competitors, on what was a wonderful Senior Championship.