Coast man wins The Way of the Horse challenge

BOW DOWN: Equitana’s The Way of the Horse challenge winner is Tui Teka from Tokomaru Bay. The horseman hada to break in a wild horse over four days and performed well on the international stage. He is pictured at the launch of Equitana Auckland with his horse Kingston. Picture by Libby Law Photography
Tui Teka at EQUITANA Auckland with The Way of The Horse judge and former world number one eventer, Andrew Nicholson. Photo by Eye Witness Images

THEY call him the horse whisperer, but Tui Teka says he is just your average bloke from Tokomaru Bay who knows how to work with horses.

The 24-year-old horseman performed on the world stage in late November, taking out this year’s The Way of the Horse challenge at the inaugural Equitana Auckland Festival.

The challenge was to break in a wild horse within four days and he did, impressing judges including New Zealand Olympic showjumper Andrew Nicholson, Natural Horseman John Lyons and world renowned German gold medal dressage coach John Hilberath.

He proved to have gained the trust of the horse and led it through an obstacle course successfully.

“I was pretty happy with the outcome. At the end of each day we were judged on our improvements.

“Day two was a cracker day for me. I was impressing the crowd with things they were not expecting to see and I managed to get through a lot of things like standing up and cracking the whip.”

It was a big opportunity, he said, but getting out there and among the energy was the main thing.

“The goal for me was to just be myself and work with my horse.

“Once the final challenge had finished I felt like I had already won because I had worked with the horse to the best we could have.”

Mr Teka is proud to have represented his culture and community.

“These opportunities aren’t common for Maori, so firstly it is huge for me to be the first Maori in the competition and the first Maori to win the competition,” he said.

“It may open up bigger doors for me, but more importantly bigger doors for our young Maori.

“I hope my success is inspiring our people to understand that they all have the natural ability but they have to work hard to improve it.”

Mr Teka grew up in Tokomaru Bay and has always had a connection with horses.

He will be welcomed home this afternoon with the community putting on a parade and presentation as he brings home the trophy.

“Returning the trophy home, to where it all began, is hugely important for me,” he said.

Mr Teka has been invited as a special guest to Equitana Melbourne in 2018. His champion title comes with international recognition, as Equitana is one of the world’s biggest equestrian trade shows held in major cities in Europe, Australasia and the US.

Teka beat his three competitors, Australians Brett Davey and Sharna Little, and New Zealander Emily Weibel.

THEY call him the horse whisperer, but Tui Teka says he is just your average bloke from Tokomaru Bay who knows how to work with horses.

The 24-year-old horseman performed on the world stage in late November, taking out this year’s The Way of the Horse challenge at the inaugural Equitana Auckland Festival.

The challenge was to break in a wild horse within four days and he did, impressing judges including New Zealand Olympic showjumper Andrew Nicholson, Natural Horseman John Lyons and world renowned German gold medal dressage coach John Hilberath.

He proved to have gained the trust of the horse and led it through an obstacle course successfully.

“I was pretty happy with the outcome. At the end of each day we were judged on our improvements.

“Day two was a cracker day for me. I was impressing the crowd with things they were not expecting to see and I managed to get through a lot of things like standing up and cracking the whip.”

It was a big opportunity, he said, but getting out there and among the energy was the main thing.

“The goal for me was to just be myself and work with my horse.

“Once the final challenge had finished I felt like I had already won because I had worked with the horse to the best we could have.”

Mr Teka is proud to have represented his culture and community.

“These opportunities aren’t common for Maori, so firstly it is huge for me to be the first Maori in the competition and the first Maori to win the competition,” he said.

“It may open up bigger doors for me, but more importantly bigger doors for our young Maori.

“I hope my success is inspiring our people to understand that they all have the natural ability but they have to work hard to improve it.”

Mr Teka grew up in Tokomaru Bay and has always had a connection with horses.

He will be welcomed home this afternoon with the community putting on a parade and presentation as he brings home the trophy.

“Returning the trophy home, to where it all began, is hugely important for me,” he said.

Mr Teka has been invited as a special guest to Equitana Melbourne in 2018. His champion title comes with international recognition, as Equitana is one of the world’s biggest equestrian trade shows held in major cities in Europe, Australasia and the US.

Teka beat his three competitors, Australians Brett Davey and Sharna Little, and New Zealander Emily Weibel.

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