The 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival hosted its eighth week, featuring CSIO 4* competition sponsored by Lugano Diamonds, on March 1-5. Highlight events included the $150,000 FEI Nations Cup on Friday night, March 3, and the $216,000 Lugano Diamonds Grand Prix CSIO 4* on Sunday afternoon, March 5.
The Winter Equestrian Festival continues in its ninth week of competition on March 8-12, 2017. Highlights include the $380,000 Douglas Elliman Grand Prix CSI 5*, presented by the Bainbridge Companies, on Saturday, March 11. The 12-week WEF circuit continues through April 2, 2017, awarding over $9 million in prize money.
WEF 8 Wrap-Up: Shane Sweetnam and Chaqui Z Take $216,000 Grand Prix CSIO 4*, presented by Lugano Diamonds
Ireland’s Shane Sweetnam concluded an exceptional week of CSIO 4* competition at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, FL, with a win aboard Chaqui Z in Sunday’s $216,000 Grand Prix CSIO 4*, presented by Lugano Diamonds.
After winning Thursday’s $35,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 8 aboard Cobolt, and Friday’s $150,000 FEI Nations’ Cup riding Chaqui Z for team Ireland, Sweetnam led the round of honor ahead of teammates Conor Swail and Rubens LS La Silla in Sunday’s feature event. Ali Wolff and Casall placed third after also helping team USA to a silver medal in Friday’s Nations’ Cup.
Course designer Ken Krome (USA) concluded the week with 43 entries in Sunday’s grand prix and a 17-horse jump-off. The large number over the short course set an interesting challenge, as riders raced against the clock, and only seven cleared the tiebreaking course without fault. Sweetnam and Spy Coast Farm’s Chaqui Z took the win in 41.79 seconds. Swail and Vanessa Mannix’s Rubens LS La Silla were close behind in 41.82 seconds. Wolff and Blacklick Bend Farm’s Casall clocked in at 43.02 seconds.
USA’s Beezie Madden jumped Abigail Wexner’s Coach to a fourth place finish in 43.11 seconds. Great Britain’s Jessica Mendoza and Toy Boy placed fifth in 43.23 seconds.
Sweetnam swept international competition during WEF 8 to be awarded the Niall Grimes “Cheers” Perpetual Trophy as the top Irish rider during CSIO week, an honor he also received in 2011. His winning mount for Nations’ Cup and grand prix competition was Chaqui Z, an 11-year-old Zangersheide stallion (Chacco-Blue x Quinar Z).
“It was brilliant. Honestly, this is a dream week for me,” Sweetnam acknowledged. “Any week of WEF, if you can win the WEF (Challenge Cup) and the grand prix, it nearly can make a WEF [circuit]. So to win the WEF, the Nations’ Cup, and then the grand prix, it is amazing.”
Remarking on his win on Sunday, Sweetnam stated, “It was a fantastic first round, but then there were 17 in the jump-off, and I was thinking that I had no hope. Chaqui is very good at turns, which he proved, but he is not always the fastest. I was quick, and Chaqui did the turns super. Lucky enough, my time lasted.”
Sweetnam is a fan of Ken Krome’s courses after the success he had throughout the week. The rider noted, “I think all week he did a great job. I was impressed with the WEF starting off, because it was not just a speed class. It was a lot of jumping, but you did not have to run your horse off its feet. Friday night, he only had three double clears, which was a great course. Today, okay there were probably more clears than you would want, but then it was a very good jump-off. That is the way the sport seems to be going. It makes it more exciting, and it makes people want to come watch. It just gets faster and faster. There were a lot of good horses, and it made for a very good class.”
For his second place finish, Swail was also aboard his winning Nations’ Cup mount with the 11-year-old Mexican Sport Horse stallion (Rebozo LS La Silla x Cash) Rubens LS La Silla. Remarking on his round, Swail stated, “I think I felt a little bit the same as Shane when there were 17 clear. My horse is not the fastest horse. He is a big, rangy, slower type. I was thinking, ‘Okay, if we can get into the top four, I am building on what is becoming a very consistent and promising horse.’ I was lucky with a good draw; I was second to last to go. When I was going into the ring, I felt I could beat Shane. The big key for me was I needed six strides from one to two. Unfortunately, I got a slow shot to number one, and I was not able to get it. I was a little bit chasing after that, but how the horse jumped and how he did, I was so pleased with him.”
Wolff’s mount for CSIO week was Casall, a 12-year-old Holsteiner gelding (Casall ASK x Capitol I) that she has been partnered with for five years.
“We have just kind of been bringing him up the ranks,” Wolff detailed. “I bought him as a sales horse to maybe do the Junior/Amateurs on, but he ended up just jumping higher and higher. He still has a bright future ahead of him. He is pretty seasoned now, but he has just been phenomenal for me and my career.”
Describing her jump-off round, Wolff added, “Going early on, it is a little hard because I knew I had about 12 other people behind me, including Shane and Conor. But then I saw Kent go, and he made an error and was a little rushed. I just had to go in knowing that I had to go my own speed. I started off with my pace that I wanted. I was able to finish on the same pace, and everything kind of came up naturally. I got a little bit of a lucky rub on the last fence, but he was really good for me.”
For her success this week, Wolff was also presented the Leading Lady Rider Award for week eight, presented by Martha Jolicoeur of Douglas Elliman Real Estate.
Final Results: $216,000 Grand Prix CSIO 4*, Presented by Lugano Diamonds
1. CHAQUI Z: 2006 Zangersheide stallion by Chacco-Blue x Quinar Z
SHANE SWEETNAM (IRL), Spy Coast Farm LLC: 0/0/41.79
2. RUBENS LS LA SILLA: 2006 SLS stallion by Rebozo LS La Silla x Cash
CONOR SWAIL (IRL), Vanessa Mannix: 0/0/41.82
3. CASALL: 2005 Holsteiner gelding by Casall ASK x Capitol I
ALI WOLFF (USA), Blacklick Bend Farm: 0/0/43.02
4. COACH: 2008 Holsteiner gelding by Con Air x Corofino I
BEEZIE MADDEN (USA), Abigail Wexner: 0/0/43.11
5. TOY BOY: 2008 BCP gelding by Unknown x Unknown
JESSICA MENDOZA (GBR), Jessica Mendoza: 0/0/43.23
6. PRINCE ROYAL Z MFS: 2007 Zangersheide stallion by Prince de Revel x Ramiro Z
PEDRO MUYLAERT (BRA), Stenio da Silva: 0/0/45.77
7. BARNETTA: 2004 Westphalian gelding by Baloubet du Rouet x Polydor
SHARN WORDLEY (NZL), Sky Group: 0/0/46.01
8. GAZELLE: 2006 Belgian Warmblood mare by Kashmir van Schuttershof x Indoctro
KENT FARRINGTON (USA), Kent Farrington & Robin Parsky: 0/4/40.87
9. LADRIANO Z: 2008 Zangersheide gelding by Lawito x Baloubet du Rouet
DANIEL BLUMAN (ISR), Blue Star Investments & Alexa Schwitzer: 0/4/40.90
10. WATERFORD: 2003 KWPN gelding by Coolcorron Cool Diamond x Julio Mariner XX
LAUREN HOUGH (USA), Laura and Meredith Mateo: 0/4/41.68
11. BULL RUN’S TESTIFY: 2004 Selle Francais gelding by Dollar du Murier x Oberon du Moulin
KRISTEN VANDERVEEN (USA), Bull Run Jumpers Inc: 0/4/42.27
12. SERINGAT: 2006 Selle Francais gelding by Chef Rouge x Guillaume Tell
CIAN O’CONNOR (IRL), Ronnoco Jump Ltd: 0/4/44.3
Week 8 Wrap-Up: Ireland Wins $150,000 FEI Nations’ Cup for Second Consecutive Year at the Winter Equestrian Festival
The Irish team of Cian O’Connor, Paul O’Shea, Conor Swail, and Shane Sweetnam emerged victorious in Friday night’s $150,000 FEI Nations’ Cup at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL. The team from USA finished second, and Brazil placed third.
Friday’s Nations’ Cup consisted of two rounds shown over a course set by Ken Krome (USA). Teams of four represented the nations of Great Britain, Canada, Ireland, USA, Brazil, Argentina, and Venezuela competing in that order, followed by a team of three for El Salvador. After the first round, each team dropped their highest score. In the second round, the top six teams returned in order of highest to lowest total faults. The winner was determined by the lowest total of each team’s top three riders from each round.
Ireland finished round one tied for first place with Brazil on a score of zero. They then completed round two with four faults to take the win. Brazil moved into third place with 16 faults in round two. USA carried five faults from round one, and added eight in round two to secure second place on a 13-point total.
The winning nation was represented by Shane Sweetnam aboard his own and Spy Coast Farm’s Chaqui Z; Paul O’Shea riding Skara Glen, Whipstick, Hurter, and Agnew’s Skara Glen’s Machu Picchu; Conor Swail with Vanessa Mannix’s Rubens LS La Silla; and Cian O’Connor aboard Ronnoco Jump Ltd.’s Seringat, led by Chef d’Equipe Michael Blake.
“I am a very proud Irishman. I am absolutely delighted,” said Blake, who also led the team to victory in Ocala two weeks ago. “We came here to win, and we went to Ocala to win. It is very easy to win with these guys because they are really good. Basically, if you have a bit of a plan and tell them in time where they are going, they are going to turn up. That is what they did on both occasions. People asked why I changed the winning team from Ocala (switching out Kevin Babington and Richie Moloney). I changed because I was looking at Paul and Conor, and I think their form is fantastic. I did not think they were quite ready in time for Ocala, but I knew they would be ready now, and they were fantastic.”
Sweetnam was the team’s first rider in each round on Friday night, earning the drop score of one time fault in round one, and four faults in round two, aboard Chaqui Z. He also rode the 11-year-old Zangersheide stallion (Chacco-Blue x Quinar Z) to victory in Ocala.
Friday night was Sweetnam’s tenth straight year competing on the Irish team in Nations’ Cup at WEF, and he spoke of Blake’s strategy for the team.
“Michael made a good plan and talked to all of the riders that were here in Wellington,” Sweetnam stated. “Obviously Cian and I were lucky enough to be on both teams that won, but Kevin and Richie were also here in the practice ring tonight helping out. The team spirit is fantastic. I have to give it to Michael; it is just amazing.”
O’Shea jumped double clear on Friday night with Skara Glen’s Machu Picchu, a ten-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Silverstone x Matterhorn), and was happy with his first time on the team in Wellington.
“Nothing really fazes him, so I was not worried,” O’Shea said of his mount. “He has such a good mind. He is a very straightforward horse, very easy, and very adjustable.”
Swail put in a faultless first round and dropped one rail in round two with the 11-year-old Mexican Sport Horse stallion Rubens LS La Silla (Rebozo LS La Silla x Cash). He remarked, “The horse jumped very well tonight. He is a new horse to me this year. He is a wonderful horse, and a great prospect for the future, and for the Irish team. Ireland has won here now three times, and thankfully I have been on all three teams. It has been a good record for me. We all mucked in, and dug in the trenches there, and I think we all did a great job tonight.”
O’Connor anchored his team with double clear rounds for the second Nations’ Cup in a row with Seringat, an 11-year-old Selle Francais gelding (Chef Rouge x Guillaume Tell).
“He had a rest since Ocala,” the rider noted. “Obviously it is a very different atmosphere here. Ocala was very warm, and it was during the day. I found this a little bit harder because the horse was lit up and on his toes, especially coming down the last line. I had to use all my strength to pull him off the combination, but he is very careful. He knows where his legs are, and he knows to get them out of the way, so I am very happy. It is great to win, and it was a fantastic team effort.”
The home squad for USA included Ali Wolff and Blacklick Bend Farm’s Casall, Catherine Tyree aboard Mary Tyree’s Bokai, Chloe Reid riding Team Reid LLC’s Codarco, and anchor rider Georgina Bloomberg with Gotham Enterprizes LLC’s Lilli, led by Chef d’Equipe Robert Ridland.
Tyree jumped double clear in her first-ever senior Nations’ Cup appearance for USA and commented on a great night as well.
“I’m thrilled with how my horse went,” she stated. “He has such a great character and such a great mind. I knew once I went in the ring that everything would be okay. I jumped the first jump, and it felt like every other class that I have done so far down here. I could not be happier.”
Third place finishers for Brazil included Yuri Mansur riding his own and Euro Stables’ Babylotte, Pedro Muylaert aboard Stenio da Silva’s Prince Royal Z MFS, Luiz Francisco de Azevedo with his own Comic, and Eduardo Menezes riding his own and Gestut Lewitz’s Quintol.
Great Britain placed fourth with 28 faults, Canada placed fifth on 36 faults, and Argentina took sixth place with 43 faults.
WEF 8 Wrap-Up: Lucy Deslauriers and Hester Shine in $100,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic
Seventeen-year-old Lucy Deslauriers (USA) topped a line-up that included Olympians and some of the fastest riders in the world on Saturday, March 4, to win week eight’s $100,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic with Hester at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL.
Course designer Ken Krome (USA) set the track for Saturday night’s 1.50m competition, which featured 49 entries jumping under the lights in the International Arena at PBIEC and yielded a nine-horse jump-off. Seven entries cleared the short course without fault, and it was the youngest of the pack that jumped to victory in the fastest time of 37.06 seconds.
It was the biggest win of a blossoming show jumping career for Deslauriers, who has been extremely successful in Under 25 events throughout North America over the last several seasons. She was aboard Lisa Deslauriers’ Hester, the 12-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding (Wandor van de Mispelaere x Palestro vd Begijnakker) that she has ridden to success for almost five years.
“It was incredible!” Deslauriers beamed following her victory. “Hester definitely felt the atmosphere tonight, and he really thrives on that sort of situation. He feels a crowd. He knows it is under the lights, and he knew it was time to perform.”
Remarking on the group of riders in the jump-off, Deslauriers admitted, “It was pretty intimidating. I knew there were a bunch of really fast combinations behind me and even that went before me. I am lucky my horse is super quick, and he has a huge stride. I just tried to use that to my advantage and not slow down.”
Deslauriers jumped in two 1.50m events in 2016, but it was her first time competing at that level with Hester in a major night class.
“It was definitely a step-up,” she said. “It really just felt like a grand prix under the lights. I tried to think about my plan, and not really worry about how big it was, and just ride the best that I could.”
Darragh Kenny (IRL) finished second, riding Kerry Anne LLC’s Bolero III through the timers in 37.28 seconds. Kevin Babington (IRL) placed third aboard veteran partner Mark Q in 37.48 seconds, and Alex Granato (USA) guided Page Tredennick’s Carlchen W to fourth place honors in 37.94 seconds.
Final Results: $100,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic
1. HESTER: 2005 Belgian Warmblood gelding by Wandor van de Mispelaere x Palestro vd Begijnakker
LUCY DESLAURIERS (USA), Lisa Deslauriers: 0/0/37.06
2. BOLERO III: 2007 Belgian Sport Horse gelding by Chatman x Darco
DARRAGH KENNY (IRL), Kerry Anne LLC: 0/0/37.28
3. MARK Q: 2002 Irish Sport Horse gelding by Obos Quality 004 x Positively
KEVIN BABINGTON (IRL), Kevin Babington: 0/0/37.48
4. CARLCHEN W: 2008 Mecklenberg gelding by Chacco-Blue x Continue
ALEX GRANATO (USA), Page Tredennick: 0/0/37.94
5. MAIN ROAD: 2008 Swedish Warmblood gelding by Heartbeat x Irco Marco
SHANE SWEETNAM (IRL), Sweet Oak Farm and Seabrook LLC: 0/0/39.14
6. TOULAGO: 2005 Oldenburg gelding by Toulon x Carthago Z
ADRIENNE STERNLICHT (USA), Starlight Farms LLC: 0/0/40.28
7. CORNWALL BH: 2008 Holsteiner stallion by Con Air x Cambridge
AMANDA DERBYSHIRE (GBR), Gochman Sport Horses: 0/0/40.88
8. WICKED CRUSH: 2005 Westphalian mare by Sandro Boy x Calido
SAMUEL HUTTON (GBR), Joanne Sloan-Allen: 0/4/44.15
9. CHARMEUR: 2007 KWPN gelding by Numero Uno x Gelha’s VDL Emilion
SERGIO ALVAREZ MOYA (ESP), Alvarez Moya Horse SL: 0/4/46.53
10. CHICHESTER 3: 2008 Holsteiner gelding by Casall x Cosimo
ALONSO VALDEZ PRADO (PUR), Alonso Valdez Prado: 4/70.56
11. CONSTABLE II: 2007 KWPN gelding by Harley VDL x Lupicor
LAURA KRAUT (USA), Cherry Knoll Farm: 4/71.39
12. IMKE 111: 2008 Belgian Warmblood mare by Der Senaat 111 x Heartbreaker
ABDEL SAID (EGY), AS Sport Horses: 4/71.45
WEF 8 Wrap-Up: Eugenio Garza Wins $35,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Series Grand Prix
It was a win for Mexico in Saturday’s $35,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Series Grand Prix at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival, as Eugenio Garza and El Milagro’s Victer Finn DH Z topped a field of 49 starters jumping a course set by Ken Krome (USA).
Seven entries advanced to the jump-off, where only two were able to clear the short course without fault. Garza and Victer Finn DH Z cleared the track in 31.10 seconds. Jennifer Gates (USA) placed second in 33.21 seconds aboard Evergate Stable’s Pumped Up Kicks. Alex Matz (USA) completed the fastest four-fault round in 30.55 seconds to place third riding D.D. Matz’s Cashew CR.
Garza (20) was aboard a special horse in the nine-year-old Zangersheide gelding (Va Vite x Stakkato) Victer Finn DH Z, which he purchased from Belgium’s Jos Verlooy in May of 2016.
“He is actually the son of the first grand prix mare I ever had named Seagull,” Garza stated. “That mare was pretty much the one that got me into riding, but she was plagued with injuries. She never really got to do anything, but her son Victer is an amazing horse. He has so much heart and so many good qualities just like his mother. He is a really special horse for us.”
Speaking of his winning ride on Saturday, Garza detailed, “I was fortunate to go the later side of the jump-off. We knew that there had been a fast clear from Jennifer, so we just tried to be efficient in the turns and everything came up really nicely. I almost did one less (stride) than I was supposed to going to the last jump, but thankfully Victer helped me out there. He tried his heart out today, and I could not be happier with him.”
Remarking on her round with the 14-year-old Brandenburg gelding (Levisto x San Juan) Pumped Up Kicks, Gates noted, “I did this week in preparation for the five-star next week with Kix. After the four-star a few weeks ago, he has had a little bit of a break, which is nice.
“Going into the jump-off, I wanted to try to work on my turns,” Gates explained. “I am usually really slow in jump-offs. I was just glad to have a clear round, and I knew somebody would probably catch me. I was really happy; I feel like I worked on what I wanted to in preparation for next week.”
Third place finisher Alex Matz was aboard Cashew CR, a nine-year-old Holsteiner gelding (Cassini II x Quinar) that he got last summer.
“He is relatively new, and he is just sort of coming into his own right now,” Matz said of his mount. “It has taken a while for us to mesh, but he has tried tremendously every round for me. He has all the ability in the world, and he has been really a great new horse.”
While Matz was competing in only his third Under 25 event, Gates and Garza each have more experience in the series. For Garza, this is his third year competing in the classes and a great opportunity for both horse and rider.
“We really like the series, and the grand prix is a great class for us,” Garza stated. “Even more so this year now that the grand prix are ranking classes [in the U25 Series]. That is unbelievable. Usually at WEF, you go up against not only amazing riders, but the top, best riders in the world. It is really nice for the under 25 riders to be able to get some ranking points, and it is very generous for the sponsors to put that extra money for us.”
Victer Finn DH Z was also presented the Champion Equine Insurance Jumper Style Award for week eight by Laura Fetterman.
The Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Grand Prix Series, presented by The Dutta Corp. in association with Guido Klatte, was developed as a bridge to the international level of grand prix competition. The series gives athletes, both human and equine, an opportunity to compete under a myriad of conditions, including jumping on grass, under the lights at night, and in team competition, all important elements that competitors will face as their international careers progress. The series concludes with a $50,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Grand Prix Final, which the top 30 riders in the point standings will be invited to contest on Sunday, April 2.
Final Results: $35,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Series Grand Prix
1. VICTER FINN DH Z: 2008 Zangersheide gelding by Va Vite x Stakkato
EUGENIO GARZA (MEX), El Milagro: 0/0/31.10
2. PUMPED UP KICKS: 2003 Brandenburg gelding by Levisto x San Juan
JENNIFER GATES (USA), Evergate Stable LLC: 0/0/33.21
3. CASHEW CR: 2008 Holsteiner gelding by Cassini II x Quinar
ALEX MATZ (USA), Dorothy Matz: 0/4/30.55
4. DIAMONTE DARCO: 2005 GBSH mare by Unbelievable Darco x Unknown
LUCAS PORTER (USA), Sleepy P Ranch LLC: 0/4/31.00
5. CIPPOLINI VD GASTHOEVE: 2002 Belgian Warmblood gelding by Darco x Latano
ADAM RITTENBERG (USA), Adam Rittenberg: 0/4/34.2
6. RIVALE DU BARQUET: 2005 Selle Francais gelding by Adelfos x Iago C X
SPENCER SMITH (USA), Ashland Farms: 0/8/32.59
7. CASPER: 2003 Swedish Warmblood gelding by Cardento x Robin Z
AILISH CUNNIFFE (USA), Whipstick Farm Ltd: 0/8/35.68
8. TOSCA DU FEUGRE: 2007 Selle Francais mare by Calvaro x Nidor Platiere
LAUREN FISCHER (USA), Cheryl Fischer: 1/74.67
9. SIMBA DE LA ROQUE: 2006 Selle Francais gelding by Kannan x Allegreto
DANIEL COYLE (IRL), Susan Grange: 1/75.51
10. CRISTOBAR: 2006 Westphalian gelding by Cristallo x Lancer III
TEDDY VLOCK (USA), Vlock Show Stables: 2/79.19
11. TEMPORELLE DE FRITOT: 2007 Selle Francais mare by Diamant de Semilly x Nantoung
ROGELIO PELLERANO (DOM), Rogelio Pellerano: 4/68.16
12. CHACCO PRIME: 2008 Hanoverian gelding by Chacco-Blue x Le Primeur
ALEXANNE THIBAULT (CAN), Alexanne Thibault: 4/69.29
Jumper Highlights: Wednesday through Sunday
USA’s Peter Lutz opened CSIO 4* competition during week eight of the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) with a win in the $5,000 Lugano Diamonds Welcome riding Cheri de Papignies at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL.
Ken Krome (USA) was the course designer for competition in the International Arena during week eight. Krome set the speed track for 57 starters in the day session of the $5,000 Lugano Diamonds Welcome class with 12 clear rounds. Halfway through the order, Peter Lutz and QBS Equestrian LLC’s Cheri de Papignies set the winning time of 63.02 seconds. Alberto Sanchez-Cozar (MEX) finished second riding his own Wupp to a time of 63.67 seconds. Isabel Roman-Karajan (AUT) guided Elia Roman’s Ratina 193 to third place in 64.62 seconds. Chloe Reid (USA) and Live Oak Plantation LLC’s Donald 550 rounded out the top four in 64.88 seconds.
A second session of the $5,000 Lugano Diamonds Welcome was also held in the evening under the lights, with a win for Laura Chapot (USA) riding her own and Mary Chapot’s Calafornia.
Also competing in the International Arena on Wednesday, the $6,000 Illustrated Properties 1.40m was held in a California Split, with a win for McLain Ward (USA) and Sagamore Farm’s Calvados in Section A, and Laura Chapot (USA) aboard Mary Chapot’s Shooting Star in Section B.
It was an Irish victory on day two of CSIO 4* competition, as Shane Sweetnam and Cobolt captured the win in round eight of the Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Series.
This week’s edition of WEF Challenge Cup competition was held as a one-round speed class with 59 entries starting over Ken Krome’s (USA) course with ten clear rounds. Sweetnam, aboard his own and The Blue Buckle Group’s Cobolt, clocked the winning time of 69.13 seconds. The pair edged out Todd Minikus (USA) and Wyndmont’s Valinski S, who settled for second place in 69.91 seconds. Reigning World Champions Jeroen Dubbeldam (NED) and SFN Zenith, owned by Springpaarden Fonds Nederland and W. van der Ham, placed third in 71.43 seconds.
2016 Olympic team silver medalist McLain Ward (USA) returned to the winner’s circle during week eight with a victory aboard veteran mount HH Carlos Z in Thursday’s $25,000 Nutrena Jumper Classic. Despite some time off due to an injury sustained in October, the speedy 15-year-old Zangersheide gelding (Chellano Z x Voltaire) was in fine form to top a field of 78 competitors.
Ken Krome (USA) set the course, which yielded 17 starters for the jump-off, and another ten clear entries over the short track. Spain’s Sergio Alvarez Moya and G&C Durania K were first to go in the jump-off, setting the pace with a clear round in 40.66 seconds to eventually finish third. Ward and Double H Farm’s pint-sized gelding soon took over the lead in 39.50 seconds. Later, Ireland’s Darragh Kenny jumped into second place with a time of 40.32 seconds riding Kerry Anne LLC’s Bolero III.
Also competing in the International Arena on Thursday, Katherine Strauss and All In won the $10,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Grand Prix Series Welcome, and Christina Firestone (USA) and Arwen were victorious in the $1,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 1.40m.
Also competing in the International Arena on Friday, Jimmy Torano (USA) topped the $10,000 Griffis Residential CSIO Speed Stake riding Missy Clark and North Run’s Betagravin. The class saw 27 entries and 11 clear rounds, with Torano clocking the winning time of 54.90 seconds. Todd Minikus (USA) and Wyndmont’s Zephyr finished second in 56.63 seconds. McLain Ward (USA) and Ali Nilforushan’s Balando placed third in 57.98 seconds.
Ward got a win earlier in the day riding Sagamore Farm’s Calvados in the $6,000 Illustrated Properties 1.40m Speed Challenge.
Torano and Betagravin also won Saturday’s $35,000 Douglas Elliman 1.45m Classic during week eight at WEF. Forty entries showed, and nine jumped clear over the Ken Krome (USA) designed speed course. Torano and the 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood mare (Quasimodo Z x Grandeville) clocked the winning time of 64.53 seconds.
Markus Beerbaum (GER) set an early pace aboard Michaels and Beerbaum’s Charmed 2 in 67.15 seconds to eventually finish fourth. Margie Engle (USA) and Elm Rock LLC’s Böckmanns Lazio placed second in 66.61 seconds, and Richie Moloney jumped into third at the end with a time of 66.77 seconds aboard Equinimity LLC’s Ypaja Yando.
Also competing in the International Arena on Saturday, Eve Jobs and Charleville were victorious in the $15,000 SJHOF High Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic, presented by Engel & Völkers. The Kate Nash Boone Style Award was also presented to Canada’s Ian Millar.
On Sunday, Tracy Williams and Bendoctro won the $10,000 Horseware Ireland Don Little Masters Classic. Lucy Deslauriers and Mario Deslauriers’ Curo won the $10,000 SJHOF High Junior Jumper Classic, presented by Sleepy P Ranch.
Week 8 Jumper Classic Winners:
$15,000 SJHOF High Amateur-Owner Jumpers, presented by Engel & Völkers – Eve Jobs and Charleville
$10,000 SJHOF High Junior Jumpers, presented by Sleepy P Ranch – Lucy Deslauriers and Curo
$10,000 Equiline Medium Amateur-Owner Jumpers – Mireya Godoy and Rhea de l’Ici
$10,000 Martha Jolicoeur, Douglas Elliman Real Estate Low Amateur-Owner Jumpers – Jennifer Jones and E Umonia R
$10,000 Maria Mendelsohn, Douglas Elliman Real Estate Low Junior Jumpers – Giavanna Rinaldi and Fausto
$10,000 Hollow Creek Farm Medium Junior Jumpers – Emma Kurtz and Carisma
$10,000 EnTrust Capital Adult Jumpers 18-35 – Nicole Lyvere and Tiggerr
$10,000 Adult Jumpers 36 and Over – Tracy Harris and Une Etoile de l’Eclypse
$10,000 Horseware Ireland Don Little Masters – Tracy Williams and Bendoctro
Week 8 Jumper Champions:
Equestrian Sotheby’s Children’s Jumper 14 & Under – Mia Albelo and Cassandra Dreams
Equis Boutique Children’s Jumper 15-17 – Carly Hoft and Available Ohio
Griffis Residential Modified Children’s Jumpers – Farah Rizvi and Zopala
FarmVet Adult Modified Jumpers – Cesar Camargo and Fred van den Dael
Karina Brez Jewelry Low Adult Jumper 18-35 – Lucy Huber and Knuffel
Pegasus Builders Low Adult Jumper 36 & Over – Molly Athey and Cyber Space
Equo Low Children’s Jumper – Daniel Kerins and Sundance
Hunter and Equitation Highlights – Thursday through Sunday
Scott Stewart of Wellington, FL, and Status, an entry owned by Rivers Edge, earned an impressive total of 40 points in the CaptiveOne Green Hunter 3’3” division to win the championship title. Stewart piloted the gelding to two wins, as well as second and third place finishes over fences. The pair also won the under saddle.
Katherine Newman of Wellington, FL, guided Dandelion, owned by Allwyn Court, Inc., to the reserve tricolor ribbon. The duo won an over fences, placed second in the other three jumping classes, and sixth under saddle. Dandelion is a 2006 Dutch Warmblood Mare by Heartbreaker.
After winning two over fences classes and the under saddle, Gavin Moylan of Middleburg, VA, and String of Pearls were named champion of the Young Hunter 3’6” division. The pair also earned second and third place ribbons over fences. String of Pearls is owned by Priscilla Denegre, who is the mother of Moylan’s wife, Alden Moylan. Denegre has previously shown the mare in the Adult hunters.
Hunter Kay of Charlotte, NC, and Bastille, an entry of Eliza Fauntleroy, captured the reserve title. Kay piloted the coming seven-year-old gelding by Catoki’s Cannon to first, second, fourth, and fifth place finishes over fences, and a second place finish under saddle.
Taegan Long of Medford, NJ, and Angelique bested a field of 35 competitors to capture the championship ribbon in the Alessandro Albanese Equitation 15-17 3’3” division on Saturday afternoon. Long piloted her own 2008 mare by Amadehus to first and second place ribbons over fences, as well as third place in the flat phase. The pair also competes in the 3’6” equitation classes.
Christina Rogalny of Wellington, FL, and Cool Boy settled for reserve honors, winning an over fences class. Cool Boy, an entry owned by Treesdale Farm, is a 2003 Oldenburg gelding that Rogalny has ridden since the start of 2016.
Victoria Herran and Con-Grande were named champions of the Palm Beach International Academy Children’s Hunter 15-17 division on Sunday morning. Herran piloted her mount to a win over fences, third, fourth, and sixth place finishes over fences, as well as a third place finish under saddle. Herran lives in Miami, FL, and commutes to WEF to show on the weekends.
The division had a three-way-tie for reserve champion with Sophia Soja, Sarah Ekola, and Abigail Tinsley each earning a tricolor ribbon. Soja of Chappaqua, NY, piloted Casco De La Vie Z, an entry owned by Jimmy Torano, to a win and a fourth place finish over fences. Abigail Tinsley of Sudbury, MA, rode her own Zonder Z Quattro to two second place finishes over fences. Sarah Ekola of Blythewood, SC, guided Zanzibar to a win and a fourth place finish over fences.