For Immediate Release
Jennifer Wood and Sabrina Brashares for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
Wellington, FL – March 7, 2020 – Ashlee Bond (ISR) recorded her first career five-star grand prix victory riding Donatello 141 in the $401,000 Douglas Elliman Real Estate Grand Prix CSI5*, on Saturday, March 7, at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL.
WEF continues at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) through March 29, 2020, with 12 consecutive weeks of world-class competition and $13 million dollars on offer. The ninth week of competition, sponsored by Douglas Elliman Real Estate, concludes on March 8 with the $50,000 Griffis Residential Grand Prix CSI2* on Sunday.
Forty riders went to post in the “Saturday Night Lights” feature, four of which found the path to a clear round to advance to the jump-off over a course designed by Alan Wade of Ireland. Riding out of the first spot in the jump-off, Bond and Donatello 141 rocketed through the course in 39.64 seconds to set the winning pace.
“My horse felt like he really jumped the first round so beautifully and he is a naturally really fast horse, but he does have a bit of a smaller stride, so in this type of jump-off, Daniel had probably a bit of a bigger advantage,” Bond explained. “[Donatello] lightly rubbed the first jump and then I was like, ‘Oh okay, I can push it a bit more than I was originally planning to,’ and it worked out today.”
Following Bond, 23-year-old Lillie Keenan (USA) piloted Chansonette Farm LLC’s Fasther through the short course, stopping the timers in 40.61 seconds. They would finish in third place. Beezie Madden (USA) and Abigail Wexner’s Darry Lou put on the speed from the start, but an unfortunate rail for four faults in a time of 39.97 seconds relegated them to fourth place.
“I was really happy with how I rode the first round and I was really upset with myself for how I rode the jump-off,” admitted Keenan. “My horse is the best horse I’ve ever ridden, and I’ve ridden a lot of special horses. He’s ridiculously talented, brave, and has all of the ability. In the jump-off, I should have gone faster and believed in it a bit more, but I couldn’t have been happier.
“Six months ago, I never would have thought I’d be here with this horse,” she continued about the 10-year-old KWPN gelding by Vigo d’Arsouilles x Farmer. “Not for lack of his talent and ability, but my riding and my confidence level in this horse. I should have gone faster because I know the horse would have left all the jumps up, but I’m thrilled to be in third behind these two guys.”
Riding out of the final spot in the jump-off, fellow Israeli rider Daniel Bluman and Ladriano Z, a 12-year-old Zangersheide gelding by Lawito x Baloubet du Rouet owned by Over The Top Stables LLC, finished just off the pace in 39.96 seconds to settle for second place.
“I don’t think I rode very well the first round,” said Bluman. “I didn’t stick to my plan and I honestly just didn’t ride well. There are times you ride amazing and you have one down, and there are times you ride incredibly bad like I did tonight, and the jumps stay up. For the jump-off, I gave it a go, but I didn’t want to push the limit. I thought the horse had already covered for me in the first round and so I felt I needed to cover for him in the second round and give him a safe ride.”
For Bond, the ability to say she is now a five-star grand prix winner isn’t taken lightly. She said, “The feeling is surreal. It hasn’t really hit me, the emotions of tonight. Not only was it my first five-star grand prix win here, but it was my first five-star grand prix win ever. I’ve gone clear in a few, but winning it was not there yet.”
Bond rode Donatello 141, who is owned by her family’s Little Valley Farms, in the horse’s first five-star grand prix just a few weeks ago, but this was the first time she felt ready to push for speed. Thanks to their three-year relationship, Bond knew what she could ask for over the short course at this 1.60m level.
“He’s always been really level-headed and the height of the jump has never bothered him,” she explained. “As a young horse, every time I asked him to move up, it just took him a couple of tries and then it’s like he locks it in to his computer and does it easily. I just know him really well, so I took a risk. There were only four in it, so I figured if I’m fourth, I make good money so might as well gun it.”
“We got him at the beginning of his six-year-old year in March,” she said of the nine-year-old Westphalian gelding by Diarado x Lamoureux. “He did not turn left. He would just exit the ring, which was fun. My dad [Steve Bond] spent a lot of time working on his turning. He used to be my worst turner; now he’s become my best.”
For both Bond and Bluman, the strong result of two Israeli teammates was very meaningful.
“For a country that was not even part of the sport in the big picture a few years ago, to be getting the results were getting right now is very strong,” confirmed Bluman. “It hasn’t hit me that we ended up one-two in one of the most important grand prixs in the United States and in North America, but it’s great and we’re trying to do things well.”
“I think it’s incredible,” said Bond. “It’s what we’ve all dreamed of Israel to become and for it to happen like Daniel said, so quickly, is really impressive. I feel like the future is really bright for our team; we might not have the depth that other countries have, but the riders that we do have are really special and we have some really special horses so I expect great things from our country, like tonight.”
“This is a big night and I know it’s hard to quiet the mind and get in the zone, but you should be very proud of yourself,” said Don Langdon, Managing Broker, Florida of Douglas Elliman Real Estate to the top three riders. “I hope you sleep very well, or celebrate and then sleep well, and know we are proud of you and hope to continue to sponsor you for years to come.”
For their win, Bond and Donatello 141 were presented with the Herman “Kappy” Kaplan Perpetual Memorial Trophy, as well as received a two-night stay at the Brazilian Court Hotel in Palm Beach.
In a special award presentation, Beezie Madden was named the week nine Martha Jolicoeur Leading Lady Rider after consistent top performances in the Saturday night grand prix and the Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 9 on Thursday.
Final Results: $401,000 Douglas Elliman Real Estate Grand Prix CSI5*
1 DONATELLO 141: 2011 Westphalian gelding by Diarado x Lamoureux I
ASHLEE BOND (ISR), Little Valley Farms: 0/0/39.64
2 LADRIANO Z: 2008 Zangersheide gelding by Lawito x Baloubet du Rouet
DANIEL BLUMAN (ISR), Over the Top Stables LLC: 0/0/39.96
3 FASTHER: 2010 KWPN gelding by Vigo d’Arsouilles x Farmer
LILLIE KEENAN (USA), Chansonette Farm LLC: 0/0/40.61
4 DARRY LOU: 2008 KWPN gelding by Tangelo van de Zuuthoeve x Nabab de Reve
BEEZIE MADDEN (USA), Abigail Wexner: 0/4/39.97
5 KEOKI: 2009 Holsteiner gelding by Catoki x Cassini I
DAVID BLAKE (IRL), Pine Hollow Farm: 1/84.03
6 ANTIDOTE DE MARS: 2010 Selle Français stallion by Diamant de Semilly x Jarnac
BLISS HEERS (USA), Bridgeside Farms, LLC: 4/77.73
7 DINKY TOY VD KRANENBURG: 2009 SBS mare by Ugano Sitte x Kimball
LORENZO DE LUCA (ITA), Stephex Stables: 4/80.55
8 HESTER: 2005 Belgian Warmblood gelding (Wandor van de Mispelaere x Palestro vd Begijnakker)
LUCY DESLAURIERS (USA), Lisa Deslauriers: 4/80.85
9 BACARA D’ARCHONFOSSE: 2007 Belgian Warmblood mare by Asca Z x Kannan
CASSIO RIVETTI (BRA), Sloan Lindeman-Barnett: 4/81.59
10 LEGACY: 2010 Zangersheide mare by Chippendale Z x Bon Ami
DANIEL COYLE (IRL), Ariel Grange: 81.97
11 CHACNA: 2007 Hanoverian mare by Chacco-Blue x Narew XX
ENRIQUE GONZALEZ (MEX), Enrique Gonzalez: 4/82.51
12 PSG FINAL: 2010 Italian Warmblood gelding by Toulon x Cassini
CIAN O’CONNOR (IRL), Ronnoco Jump ltd.: 4/82.55
Havens Schatt and Anneliese Kolaska Ride to Top Honors in the $10,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby
Hunter competition continued at the Derby Field at Equestrian Village on Saturday with the $10,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby. Ninety-one professional, amateur, and junior riders took their turn on the grass field hoping to earn the blue ribbon. The class was split into two sections, one for 48 professionals and a second for the 43 junior/amateur riders. Havens Schatt rode Highlander to victory in the professional division, while Anneliese Kolaska rode Herr Drosselmeyer to the top of the junior/amateur section.
After a competitive first round, the top 12 riders from each division returned to impress the judges one more time in the handy round. Horses and riders were tested with a trot jump and four high options on the grass field.
Schatt, of Georgetown, KY, returned to the handy with a first round score of 92.5, which put her in third place. After scoring a 93 in the handy, Schatt and Highlander rose to the top of the leaderboard with a total score of 185.5. Schatt went into the handy wanting to have a consistent round, knowing that there were two top horse and rider combinations ahead of her.
“I wanted to be as smooth as I could. I just wanted to have a solid round and have a top five finish,” Schatt explained. “He was a true professional like he has shown himself to be since I’ve had him.”
Schatt has only had Meredith Mateo’s nine-year-old Zangersheide gelding by Vigo D’Arsouilles for one month, but the pair has already proven to be winners. Schatt and Highlander won the USHJA National Derby during Week 7 and also earned the Performance Hunter 3’6” championship earlier this week. Schatt did not expect a win in this class, since she did not know how her mount would act on the derby field, but Highlander rose to the challenge.
“Everything I’ve asked him to do he’s won,” Schatt said of Highlander. “I guess maybe I should ride that streak for as long as I can! That’s what the jumper people say, ‘When you’re on a roll, keep it rolling!’”
Schatt’s future plans with Highlander change from week to week, since the gelding is currently for sale. Her current plans are to gear up for the hunter derbies taking place Week 12 of the 2020 Winter Equestrian Festival. “He’s trying as hard as he can to find a new family! He’s always in there and he’s always consistent and tries to please,” Schatt commented.
Second place in the professional section by only half a point went to Geoffrey Hesslink and Sabrina Hellman’s Luminosity. Hesslink, of Shelbourne, VT, and Luminosity received a first round score of 90 and the highest handy round score of a 95 for a total score of 185. Keri Kampsen, of Wellington, FL, and Ocean Road earned a third place finish in the class. Kampsen and Ocean Road, owned by Kampsen and Lexy Reed, earned a 90.5 in the first round and a 92 in the handy for a total score of 182.5.
Kolaska returned to the handy round in third place with a first round score of 87. Kolaska and her horse Herr Drosselmeyer earned a high score of 90 in the second round for a total score of 177.
Kolaska has been partnered with the 12-year-old Oldenburg gelding by Cevin Costner for three years and trains with Ed Copeland. Herr Drosselmeyer was originally purchased as Kolaska’s 3’6” equitation horse that could also do the hunters.
“I got him for the equitation so I could jump around and say I did it, but the hunters are our thing!” Kolaska explained. “He’s perfect! He’s such a nice ride and he loves the derbies!”
After having an unfortunate rail with her first horse, Kolaska went in on Herr Drosselmeyer hoping for a consistent round. “I went into my first round on him wanting to have a nice smooth round and hopefully make the second round,” said Kolaska.
Going into the handy, Kolaska knew that she would have to step up her game in order to move up three spots into first place. She remarked, “In my handy I was considering playing safe, but I decided to go all out and it paid off!”
Second place honors in the junior/amateur section went to Sterling Malnik, of Ocean Ridge, FL, and her horse Charlie. The pair received scores of 88 and 85 for a total round score of 173. Sydney Degrazia rode her horse Cadmo Van De Pluum to third place. Degrazia, of Rochester, NY, and Cadmo Van De Pluum earned consistent scores of 85.5 and 86 for a total of 171.5.
Final Results: $10,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby
Horse, Rider, Owner
Round 1 Score, Round 2 Score | Total
1 Highlander, Havens Schatt, Meredith Mateo
92.50, 93.00 | 185.5
2 Luminosity, Geoffrey Hesslink, Sabrina Hellman
90.00, 95.00 | 185.00
3 Ocean Road, Keri Kampsen, Keri Kampsen and Lexy Reed
90.50, 92.00 | 182.50
4 Dandan, Molly Sewell, Lucky Dey Farm
92.00, 89.50 | 181.50
5 Monterrey, Kelli Cruciotti Vanderveen, Kelli Cruciotti Vanderveen
89.00, 92.00 | 181.00
6 Mostly Sunny, Havens Schatt, Caroline Moran
91.00, 89.00 |180.00
7 St Tropez, Keri Kampsen, Laura Cramer
88.75, 91.00 | 179.75
8 Inclusion, Kelli Cruciotti Vanderveen, Chris Jansen
88.50, 88.00 | 176.50
9 Sebastian, Tiffany Morrissey, Stacey Shore Werner
93.50, 80.00 | 173.50
10 Sugarman, Jennifer Bliss, Harris Hill Farm, LLC
89.50, 76.00 | 165.50
11 Face The Music, Jennifer Bliss, Harris Hill Farm, LLC
93.00, 72.00 | 165.00
12 Avatar Z, Victoria Colvin, William Lyles
94.00, 64.00 | 158.00
1 Herr Drosselmeyer, Anneliese Kolaska, Anneliese Kolaska
87.00, 90.00 | 177.00
2 Charlie, Sterling Malnik, Sterling Malnik
88.00, 85.00 | 173.00
3 Cadmo Van De Pluum, Sydney Degrazia, Sydney Degrazia
85.50, 86.00 | 171.50
4 Golden, Christian Dominguez, David Oliynyk
84.00, 87.00 | 171.00
5 Geneva, Lea Rucker, Lea Rucker
86.00, 84.00 | 170.00
6 Conway, Michael Baum, Camille Branca
83.50, 86.00 |169.50
7 Concord, Lindsay Mutschler, Lindsay Mutschler
86.50, 81.00 | 167.50
8 Christopher, Anna Foster, Anna Foster
87.50, 78.00 | 165.50
9 Hip Hop VDL, Nicholas Pongracz, Karen Soper
85.00, 79.00 | 164.00
10 Cornando, Alexandra Sharp, Alexandra Sharp
82.00, 80.00 | 162.00
11 Coronation, Sterling Malnik, Sterling Malnik
83.00, 78.00 | 161.00
12 Dia Caspar, Rebecca Patterson, Rebecca Patterson
80.50, 59.00 | 139.50