The 2018 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), held at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL, a circuit with hunter, jumper, and equitation competition, continues through April 1, 2018, and offers more than $9 million in prize money.
WEF continues with week six featuring World Championship Hunter Rider competition on February 14-18 and FEI jumper competition at Equestrian Village at PBIEC (13500 South Shore Blvd.). Highlight events include the $132,000 Rushy Marsh Farm Grand Prix CSI 3* on Friday, February 16, at 7 p.m. in the Global International Arena at Equestrian Village and the $100,000 WCHR Peter Wetherill Palm Beach Hunter Spectacular for “Saturday Night Lights” on Saturday, February 17, at 6:30 p.m. in the WEF International Arena.
Week 5 Jumper Wrap-Up
The fifth week of the 2018 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) started on Wednesday with a win for Kristen Vanderveen (USA) and Bull Run’s Divine Fortune, owned by Bull Run Jumpers Six LLC, in the $35,000 Douglas Elliman Real Estate 1.45m Classic.
Vanderveen, of Wellington, FL, masterfully piloted her mount, also known as “Fortuna,” to the top of the class and bested the field of 59 competitors with a time of 38.407 in the speed portion of the Power and Speed format class, designed by Kelvin Bywater (GBR). Ben Maher (GBR) claimed a close second aboard Poden Farms’s Quilata with a time of 38.432 seconds. Third place went to Zoe Conter (BEL) and Soory De L’Hallali, owned by Stephex Stables, who captured the third fastest time of 39.518 seconds.
Theo Genn (USA) and Colora, owned by Bridlebourne Stables LLC, were the fastest in the $8,000 Equiline 1.45m Speed CSI 2*. Laura Chapot (USA) and Mary Chapot’s Chandon Blue were second, while 10-time Canadian Olympian Ian Millar and Vittorio 8, owned by Future Adventures, finished third.
In the $1,000 Bainbridge 1.40m CSI5* class, Danielle Goldstein (ISR) and Celebrity VDL, owned by The Golden Group and Danielle Goldstein, were victorious. Peter Lutz (USA) and QBS Equestrian LLC’s Sam 1091 placed second, while Lauren Hough (USA) and Agatha d’Ecuassinnes, owned by Weslands Farms, were third.
2017 FEI World Cup Finals winner McLain Ward piloted HH Azur to victory over nine fellow Olympians in the $132,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 5. Ward and HH Azur, a 12-year-old Belgian Sport Horse mare by Thunder van de Zuuthoeve owned by Double H Farm and Francois Mathy, went second to last in the jump-off. HH Azur showed off her typical lofty jump, but was fast across the ground on a giant stride to set the winning time at 39.94 seconds.
While aiming for his third WEF Challenge Cup victory of the season, Canadian Olympic Champion Eric Lamaze was just a bit short, finishing in a time of 39.94 seconds for second place on Fine Lady 5, his 2016 Olympic bronze medal-winning partner owned by Artisan Farms & Torrey Pines Stables.
Third place went to Margie Engle (USA) and Royce, owned by Gladewinds Farm Inc. They had a time of 40.75 seconds. Spencer Smith (USA) and Rivale du Barquet finished fourth on a time of 41.41 seconds, while Olivier Philippaerts (BEL) and H&M Ikker were fifth in 42.05 seconds.
Friday’s $35,000 Bainbridge 1.45m Classic CSI 5* marked the second major win in as many days for U.S. Olympic gold medalist McLain Ward, who captured the Friday victory at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) aboard Bellefleur PS Z.
Second place with a time of 57.88 seconds went to Ireland’s Darragh Kenny riding USA Normande, owned by Paillot Equestrian. Rounding out the top three were Karen Polle (JPN) and Little Lord with a time of 58.38 seconds.
In the $35,000 Equiline 1.45m Jumper Classic CSI 2*, Andrew Kocher (USA) was victorious riding Kahlua, owned by Top Line Sporthorse International LLC. They were fastest in an 18-horse jump-off from an original line-up of 83 entries with a time of 30.27 seconds.
Earlier in the International Arena on Saturday, and as the only double clear in the class, Mimi Gochman won the $10,000 SJHOF High Junior Jumper Classic, presented by Sleepy P Ranch, with Caleno 3, owned by Gotham Enterprizes LLC.
In their second victory of the week, McLain Ward and Bellefleur PS Z won the $70,000 Hollow Creek Farm 1.50m Classic CSI 5* over a field of 55 entries. There were 17 that advanced to the jump-off, and it was race for the nine double-clear rides. With the fastest time in the class of 35.93 seconds, Ward and Bellefleur PS Z graced the winner’s circle. The pair also won Friday’s $35,000 Bainbridge 1.45m Classic.
Second place went to Francisco Jose Mesquita Musa (BRA) on Catch Me Imperio Egipicio, owned by Daniel Aguiar Morelli, who stopped the timers in 37.09 seconds. Eve Jobs (USA) and her own Charleville were third in 38.19 seconds.
Earlier in the morning in the International Arena, Katie Browne and Eranka B, owned by Dayle Fischer, won the $10,000 Equitan Medium Junior Jumper Classic.
Week 5 Jumper Classic winners:
$15,000 SJHOF High Amateur-Owner Jumpers, presented by U.S. Trust/Bank of America Merrill Lynch – Nicole Walker and Jackson de Regor
$10,000 SJHOF High Junior Jumpers, presented by Sleepy P Ranch – Mimi Gochman and Caleno 3
$10,000 Equitan Medium Junior Jumpers – Katie Browne and Eranka B
$10,000 Equiline Medium Amateur-Owner Jumpers – Riley Newsome and Dakar VDL
$10,000 Martha Jolicoeur, Douglas Elliman Real Estate Low Amateur-Owner Jumpers – Erin Walker and Cooper
$10,000 Maria Mendelsohn, Douglas Elliman Real Estate Low Junior Jumpers – Victoria Zelch and Sniper
$10,000 Rose Hill Farm Adult Jumpers 18-35 – Madeleine Gastineau and Limited Edition
$10,000 Equis Boutique Adult Jumpers 36 and Over – Rachel Boggus and Shalamar
$10,000 Horseware Ireland Don Little Masters – Jorge Gomez and Dallas de la Bonnett
Week 5 Jumper Champions:
Equestrian Sotheby’s Children’s Jumper 14 & Under – Delfina Spinella and VDL Aberlino
Children’s Jumper 15-17 – Martha Wyatt-Luth and Cheval Z
Griffis Residential Modified Children’s Jumpers – Farah Rizvi and Zopala
FarmVet Adult Modified Jumpers – Joseph Comunale and Hector van Terwest
Karina Brez Jewelry Low Adult Jumper 18-35 – Molly Newsome and MTF Birmingham
Pegasus Builders Low Adult Jumper 36 & Over – Susan Carlson and Will O’Wisp
Carolina Arena Equipment Low Children’s Jumper – Mackenzie Altheimer and Cartina B/Sophia Gianoulis and Catalyst
ProElite Low Child/Adult Training Jumper – Karen Bailey and Baton Rouge
Spy Coast Farm 6 Year Old Developing Jumper Series Young Jumper – Willie Tynan and Southern Bunny
Spy Coast Farm 7 Year Old Developing Jumper Series Young Jumper – Taylor Flury and Calano Z
Week 5 Hunter Wrap-Up
After taking home a WEF week 1 reserve championship in the Green Hunter 3’3” division, Haylie Rolfe and Queen Celeste, owned by Pony Lane Farm, returned for week 5 determined to capture another tri-color ribbon in the division. The pair prevailed as the Green Hunter 3’3” champion on Thursday with a third in the under saddle and a first, first, second, and second over fences.
Reserve honors went to Tara Metzner aboard Lion, owned by Tammy Williams, with a first, first, and a second over fences.
Baylee McKeever and her mount, Valor, owned by Lee McKeever, claimed the blue in Friday’s Washington International Horse Show (WIHS) Pony Equitation class. The pair set a high bar to beat in ring 11 as they finished with a high score of 84. Second place in the WIHS Pony Equitation went to Sadie Paulos and Morton’s Catillac, owned by RCG Farm.
Emma Kurtz, of Hudson, OH, piloted her mount A Million Reasons, owned by Dr. Betsee Parker, to the top of the class in week five’s Small Junior Hunter 16-17 division. The duo claimed three blue ribbons over fences and an additional blue in the under saddle.
Coco Fath and Akinda, owned by Hillside Farm LLC, took the reserve championship win with a second in the under saddle along with a second and three thirds over fences.
Week five came to a close on Sunday with a fantastic championship win by Erin Floyd, from Austin, TX, and Cymplify, owned by Don Stewart, in the UHealth Junior Hunter 3’3” 16-17 division. The duo, having only been paired together for a few short weeks, gathered enough points to best the class with a first, first, second, and third over fences.
Reserve honors went to Caroline Ratigan and her mount, Trust, with a second in the under saddle and a first, second, third, and third over fences.