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Caroline Mawhinney Triumphs in $25k Hermès Under 25 Semi-Final Grand Prix

Caroline Mawhinney with Stella Levista. © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – March 4, 2022 – The highlight class on Friday, March 4, of the 2022 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) week 8, sponsored by Premier Equestrian, was the $25,000 Hermès Under 25 Semi-Final Grand Prix. Sixteen-year-old Caroline Mawhinney (USA) triumphed over a field of 66 competitors with her own Stella Levista.

The top young talent in show jumping showed up for the Hermès Under 25 Semi-Final Grand Prix, the third grand prix event of the series, which offers a variety of opportunities for U25 riders to experience grand prix competition against their peers. Nick Granat (USA) and Steve Stephens (USA) set a challenging course that included a triple combination and an open water, over which just nine of the opening field finished clear.

As the pacesetters in the opening round, 21-year-old Isabella Russekoff (USA) and Balou’s Fly High, owned by Suave Pony LLC, were the first to tackle the jump-off course. They set a quick time of 39.85 seconds with a clear round that would hold up for third place.

Mawhinney and Stella Levista zoomed through the short course in 35.56 seconds with no faults to go straight to the top of the leaderboard, and with two remaining that were slower or had faults, they held the winning spot.

Caitlyn Connors (USA) and Falcon de Hus, owned by Caitlyn Connors LLC, slid into second place with a speedy clear round in 39.63 seconds.

Grace Debney and Zarina De Vidau Zoom to the Top of the $37,000 Douglas Elliman Real Estate 1.45m CSIO4*

Daytime competition in the International Arena highlighted the $37,000 Douglas Elliman Real Estate 1.45m CSIO4*. Course designers Granat and Stephens set a delicate, single-round track that would see 46 horse-and-rider combinations elect to contest the course. John Perez (COL) and Gigi-Carmen wasted no time kicking the class into gear as the first in the line-up to go and laid down a fast, clean trip from the start. An impressive 22 combinations managed to successfully navigate the test without penalty, but 15 would suffer a single dropped obstacle.

Of the 19 nations represented in the field, it was Great Britain’s anthem that was played as young talent Grace Debney (GBR) and her long-time partner Zarina De Vidau rose as the victors of the event. The 18-year-old athlete and Temple Equestrian LLC’s 12-year-old CDE mare (Diamant De Semilly) stopped the clock in a blazing 56.10 seconds.

For more information and results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

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