Andrew Bennie’s first Olympic Games were at Los Angeles in 1984 when, riding Jade, he was one of the New Zealand equestrian three-day eventing representatives.
In his first exposure at that level, Bennie struggled and finished 37th in the individual standings. That competition was won by Bennie’s countryman Mark Todd.
However, Bennie showed the benefits of that experience at the 1988 Seoul Olympics, when he was part of the New Zealand team – along with Todd, Marges Knighton and Tinks Pottinger – that earned the bronze medal.
Riding Grayshott, Bennie had a good first day, incurring 52.2 points in the dressage. He and Grayshott struggled in the cross-country section when, in testingly hot conditions, they incurred 85.6 points. However, they got through the final day of show-jumping, knocking over five rails, and with Pottinger going clear and Todd knocking over just one rail, it was enough for New Zealand to comfortably secure third, behind West Germany and Great Britain. Poland were a distant fourth.
Bennie’s total points for the three-day event were 162.8, which placed him 20th in the individual competition.
Bennie was born in Northland and began riding at the age of 10. After 1984 Bennie settled in England. He initially trained as an electrician, but in England has made his living from competing in equestrian events, including Burghley and Badminton, training horses and teaches riding.
In 1995 he branched out and based himself in Wiltshire. He established a reputation as a dressage rider, judge and a trainer of both horses and riders in all disciplines.