Irish on Song at Langley

Photo: Richie Moloney with Carrabis Z. (FEI/Cara Grimshaw)

Canada and USA clinch qualifying spots for Longines 2018 Final in Barcelona

Team Ireland posted a convincing victory in the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Canada at Langley (CAN). In a five-country challenge they established their authority when holding the lead with just two faults on the scoreboard at the halfway stage, and then they wrapped it up in round two without having to call on anchorman Conor Swail for a second time.

Their final total of 12 faults didn’t truly reflect their supremacy which could have been even greater if Swail had returned to the ring. But they still finished six faults ahead of their Canadian hosts in runner-up spot while Team Mexico rallied brilliantly to line up third on 25 faults. USA had to settle for fourth when racking up a 34-fault total but that was still good enough to see them qualify, along with Canada, for the series Final in Barcelona (ESP) as the top two finishers in the North/Central America and Caribbean League qualifying series.

Brazil filled fifth and last place, but started with only a three-man side so had no drop-score, yet in keeping with the pattern of this fascinating competition the team showed a dramatic improvement second time out to finish on a total of 40.

When asked about the recipe for the Irish team’s recent successes, Chef d’Equipe Michael Blake said it is about putting a new strategy in place in order to expand the pool of horses and riders.

“Like a lot of countries, we had started to rely on the old guard too much. When I got the job, I decided the best thing we could do was develop as many riders as we could and give them Nations Cup experience. So last year 29 riders jumped on 20 different teams and we had 17 podium finishes out of 20. Obviously winning the European Championship was a big thing for us. This year, as of today, 25 riders have jumped on a Nations Cup team – we also had a win in Lisbon this weekend and for us to have two winning teams in the same weekend, that showed some depth!” — Michael Blake (Team Ireland Chef d’Equipe)

The Canadians always looked Barcelona-bound after winning the first two league qualifiers in Ocala (USA) and Coapexpan (MEX), but they couldn’t make it a hat-trick today when, despite a brilliant double-clear from pathfinders Tiffany Foster and Victor, they lost their second-line partnership. Keean White’s 13-year-old For Freedom Z took a severe dislike to the water-tray under the oxer at fence six and was eliminated. And water was a recurring theme all afternoon as the rain poured down on the Thunderbird show arena while American anchorman, Richard Spooner, gave a master-class in horsemanship at the open water obstacle. His 11-year-old Chatinus needed some serious encouragement just to splash through it first time out, but actually managed to clear it at his second attempt much to the delight of the crowd.

Daniel Coyle’s (23) uncharacteristic 13-fault result with Cita was Ireland’s only weak point in the first round. Richie Moloney (36) opened the competition with a foot-perfect run from the 15-year-old Carrabis Z, so when both former Irish armyman Brian Cournane with Dino and Swail with Rubens LS la Silla collected just a single time fault each then the team was well out in front going into round two. A second clear from Moloney meant that even adding the nine collected by Cournane and a single time fault from Coyle at his second attempt, the win was in the bag without Swail’s assistance.

Chef d’Equipe Blake said he was particularly pleased with today’s victory. “We targeted this event a year ago and put the team together early. All four riders managed to go one-time clear and Richie was brilliant – I’m so proud of him; he rode out of his skin. Daniel’s first round didn’t go to plan but he came back and did a great job, making a success out of potential disaster. That’s what Nations Cups are all about!” he said.

By Louise Parkes

Media contact:

Ruth Grundy
Manager Press Relations
Email: ruth.grundy@fei.org
Tel: +41 787 506 145

Parot Jumps to Success during Conclusion of Tryon Spring V CSI 3*

Samuel Parot and Quick du Pottier. Photo Credit ©Sportfot.

Mill Spring, NC – June 3, 2018 – Chile’s Samuel Parot concluded competition at Tryon Spring V on a high note, guiding his own 2004 Selle Francais gelding Quick du Pottier (Hurlevent de Breka x Silnette de Menell) to a first place victory on the Derby Field at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) in the $35,000 1.45m Sunday Classic CSI 3*.

Parot piloted his mount across the fast track in 39.44 seconds, besting more than 25 combinations and riding more than two seconds ahead of second place pair Aaron Vale (USA) and Cassevel, a 2007 Holsteiner gelding (Cassini II x Quidam de Revel) owned by Hays Investment Corp., who claimed the red rosette after a jump-off time of 41.57 seconds. Third place honors were awarded to Manuel Torres (COL) aboard Santa Catalina Farm’s Alejandro, a 2009 Rheinlander gelding (Acorado’s Ass x Continue), who rode through timers in 41.7 seconds.

Parot and the gelding have been competing at the FEI level together since 2016 and have notched several top finishes at the venue. Of his turnout for the day’s class, Parot explained, “This horse has a lot of experience out on the grass. I’ve taken him out on it a lot in Europe at shows over there. It’s easy for him to come out here. This footing is fantastic.”

The duo competed throughout the course of the week, placing fifth in the $35,000 1.50m Welcome Stake CSI 3*, after riding to the fastest jump-off time of 33.505 seconds, but adding four faults to their score.

“He jumped out here the first day and we had a fast jump-off, but knocked a rail,” exclaimed Parot. “Yesterday he competed in the Grand Prix, but had two down very quickly, so I retired him to save him for today. That was the right choice and today he was fantastic.”

Parot plans to continue on with competition next week during the CSI 4*, and will stay at the venue until the end of July. He concluded, “For the summer I will stay here and then I will figure it out from there!”

Please visit www.tryon.com or call (828)-863-1000 for more information.

Andrew Kocher and Mattias Tromp Share Open Jumper Championship Honors at Devon

Mattias Tromp (left) and Andrew Kocher (right). Photo: The Book LLC.

Devon, Pa. – June 2, 2018 – Since Tuesday, international horses and athletes have been competing for valuable points towards the week’s coveted Open Jumper championship. Following their top performances throughout the 2018 Devon Horse Show and Country Fair, Top Line Sport Horse International, LLC’s Kahlua, ridden by USA’s Andrew Kocher, and Beyaert Farm Inc.’s Eyecatcher, ridden by USA’s Mattias Tromp, were crowned the 2018 Open Jumper champions and winners of the Little Big Man Challenge Trophy. Both horses tied with 16 points at the conclusion of Saturday’s $70,000 Idle Dice Open Jumper Stake CSI4*, sponsored by Harvest Seasonal Grill and Wine Bar – Radnor, which was won by Kocher and Kahlua.

Lisa Arena Davis and Balou Fulfill Devon Dream with Grand Amateur-Owner 3’3″ Hunter Championship

The Amateur-Owner Hunter divisions crowned their respective champions on Saturday at the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair, where Lisa Arena Davis returned to Devon after six years to earn the Devon Grand Amateur-Owner 3’3″ Hunter championship title aboard Balou.

Miller Young Fina and Maximum Velocity Find Victory in English Pleasure Saddle Seat Championship

The Dixon Oval hosted the English Pleasure Saddle Seat championship on Saturday evening, where 11 competitors put on their best show to vie for the tricolor ribbon. At the end of the evening’s class, it was Miller Young Fina who claimed the top prize with Maximum Velocity. Reserve champion was awarded to Elizabeth Ruffner and SSL Ringo.

For more information, please visit www.DevonHorseShow.net.

Media Contact: Rebecca Walton
Phelps Media Group, Inc. International
phone 561.753.3389 fax 561.753.3386
info@phelpsmediagroup.com

Foot-perfect French on Fire at St Gallen

Photo: Nicolas Delmotte and Ilex VP. (FEI/Gustavo Lorenzo)

Second-placed Swiss move further ahead on leaderboard; Belgium takes third

There were great big smiles on French faces when Philippe Guerdat’s side won the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ of Switzerland at St Gallen (SUI). The French may be Olympic champions, but what made their victory all the sweeter is that there were no riders from Rio 2016 in the team that simply swamped the opposition when never putting a foot wrong all day in this third leg of the Europe Division 1 series.

And to make it all the more impressive, it took only three of their team-members to do it, fourth-line rider Olivier Robert (42) languishing on the sidelines as his compatriots ensured his services were not required in either round.

This was the 15th French win at the Swiss fixture since 1987, and the first time in 20 years for any country to win the Swiss Nations Cup with a zero score. The hosts lined up second with eight faults while Belgium finished third with 13. There were seven teams in contention and it was Germany who slotted into fourth (16 faults) ahead of Great Britain in fifth (17 faults), Spain in sixth (20 faults) and Brazil, winners at the previous leg in La Baule (FRA) two weeks ago, in seventh spot (21 faults).

Mathieu Billot (32) and the 12-year-old stallion Shiva D’Amaury led the French offensive while Nicolas Delmotte (39) and the 10-year-old gelding Ilex VP were third to go for the winning nation. But the biggest surprise of the day was the superb performance of Alexandra Francart (38) who was on a mission with her lovely nine-year-old stallion Volnay du Boisdeville. The lady who runs a relatively small 12-horse competition yard near the Belgian border, not far from Reims, was competing in her very first 5-Star Nations Cup and only her second 5-Star show. And she admitted that she got her chance only by pestering Chef d’Equipe Guerdat over the last few months.

“My horse is very talented and the first time we placed in a 3-Star Grand Prix I told Philippe – okay, we are ready; it’s time to give us a chance! Then I told him again a second time, and when I called him a third time he agreed!” — Alexandra Francart (Team France)

She took that chance in both hands when bringing her horse home twice without a hiccup to prove her point. The French were already in the lead after the first round followed by the Swiss carrying just four faults and the Belgians carrying nine. Riding the brilliant mare Bianca, Switzerland’s Steve Guerdat was also double-clear, while the British were unlucky.

Their pathfinder, William Whitaker, produced two spectacular clears from Utamaro d’Ecaussines and Holly Smith followed suit with Hearts Destiny. But Samuel Hutton and Happydam racked up 17 first-round faults and these had to be counted when Louise Saywell’s Golden Wave was eliminated at the open water. Hutton was fault-free second time out and while it was too late to rescue them from a minor placing, the British effort suggests Di Lampard’s pool of team contenders is steadily growing.

The winners from France will next line out in round four of the eight-leg Europe Division 1 series in Sopot, Poland in two weeks’ time, where they will be hoping to add to their points tally on the league table which continues to be dominated by the Swiss.

By Louise Parkes

Media contact:

Ruth Grundy
Manager Press Relations
Email: ruth.grundy@fei.org
Tel: +41 787 506 145

Sweetnam Wins $132k US Trust & Bank of America Merrill Lynch Grand Prix CSI 3*

Shane Sweetnam and Main Road. Photo Credit ©Sportfot.

Mill Spring, NC – June 2, 2018 – Shane Sweetnam (IRL) guided Main Road right to the top of the podium in the $132,000 U.S. Trust & Bank of America Merrill Lynch Grand Prix CSI 3*, the week’s highlight class at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC), after speeding through the short-course timers in 44.672 seconds. Juan Andres Rodriguéz Silva (GUA) piloted his own Bugatti, a 2006 Royal Dutch Sport Horse gelding (JPC Modesto x Emilion), to second after a fast 44.866 second clear jump-off round, while third place honors went to Hunter Holloway (USA) and Hays Investment Corporation’s Eastern Jam, a 2009 Dutch Warmblood gelding (Lexicon x Monaco), blazing to a fast 39.932 second trip, but finishing with four faults.

Thirty horse-and-rider combinations tested the first-round course designed by Anthony D’Ambrosio (USA), with four pairs returning to prove themselves around the short track. Sweetnam and the 2008 Swedish Warmblood gelding (Heartbeat x Irco Marco) owned by Sweet Oak Farm & Seabrook LLC, were last to go in the jump-off round and Sweetnam commented that his mount was feeling fresh to contest their second trip.

“I’ve had him since he was seven, so I know him really well. He’s had good results everywhere. He’s placed in the Dublin Grand Prix. He was good in Mexico City earlier this year. I went to Europe recently to compete and didn’t bring him with me because he couldn’t travel due to health restrictions for the U.S. horses coming back from Mexico,” Sweetnam explained. “This is his first show back since I got back into town, so we were a little wild in the first round, but the second round was better.”

Using his order draw to his advantage, Sweetnam mentioned that he cut it close with the time, but successfully opposed Silva’s large-strided mount. “I watched on the screen when Juan went, and he’s got a bigger mover and a different type of horse than me. He was actually quicker than I thought he was and it was tight,” he explained. “I was lucky and dodged a bit of a bullet there because my fella is a very quick horse, so I just kept it kind of even and did the turns and the numbers, but it was a bit close.”

Sweetnam plans to spend another week competing at the venue before continuing on with his summer schedule, which includes CSI 5* appearances in Belgium, Germany and Ireland, as well as a host of other top competitions abroad. He stated, “I’m showing here next week and he’ll show again because he hasn’t really done much these past six weeks. His next show would be back in Europe after that.”

Following his win, Sweetnam climbed atop the podium surrounded by his three young children. He complimented TIEC’s welcoming nature, and noted that the facility was the perfect horse show to enjoy with his equestrian-focused family. “It’s great to have my family here,” he said. “They enjoy it as well and it’s a lovely show for that. We’re here for two weeks and the whole family is here. My daughter is showing in the pony classes, and the other two are roaming the place. There’s a good group of kids here. Jimmy Torano’s kids are here, too, so it’s a great place to have them with us. We love coming here.”

Please visit www.tryon.com or call (828)-863-1000 for more information.

David Raposa Races to Top Honors in $35,000 Devon Speed Derby CSI4*

David Raposa and Iliona. Photo: The Book LLC.

Devon, Pa. – June 1, 2018 – Following Thursday night’s spectacular performances in the $250,000 Sapphire Grand Prix of Devon CSI4*, show jumping fans returned to the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair on Friday afternoon to watch USA’s David Raposa and his own Iliona capture the $35,000 Devon Speed Derby CSI4*, sponsored by Glycogard.

Beth Bidgood and Uprising Rise to the Occasion in Amateur-Owner Over 35 3’6″ Hunter Division

Beth Bidgood and her own Uprising started off with double blues in both over fences classes on Friday afternoon, the first day of the Amateur-Owner Over 35 3’6″ Hunter division at the historic Devon Horse Show, proving they are in top form after having a successful winter season showing in Florida at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF).

Misdee Wrigley Miller Conquers Coaching Championship

With the conclusion of the $35,000 Devon Speed Derby CSI4*, attention in the Dixon Oval shifted to the Four-in-Hand Coaching championship, where Misdee Wrigley Miller took home the tricolor ribbon. Miller competed with her Holland and Holland Park Drag coach that was pulled by her team of four bay Dutch Warmbloods.

For more information, please visit www.DevonHorseShow.net.

Media Contact: Rebecca Walton
Phelps Media Group, Inc. International
phone 561.753.3389 fax 561.753.3386
info@phelpsmediagroup.com

Strzegom Horse Trials – FEI Eventing Nations Cup

Photo: LOTTO Strzegom Horse Trials.

The third round of Nations Cup series in Eventing will take place in less than a month’s time on hippodrome in Morawa near Strzegom during LOTTO Strzegom Horse Trials. After events in Italian Vairano and British Houghton Hall, the Swedish team is in the lead.

Nations Cup series in Eventing will consist of eight events this year. It has begun in Italy in April. Strzegom will host the next, third in a row round. In the middle of October, during the event in Boekelo in Holland, we will find out who is the winner of the whole series.

After last weekend competition in Houghton Hall, Sweden is leading, and France is second equally placed with last year winner, Germany, both followed by USA team.

“The sports competition in Strzegom surely will be exciting and it will also be a test of the new Olympic format,” says Marcin Konarski, Event Director.

Contact:
www.strzegomhorsetrials.pl
press@strzegomhorsetrials.pl

Quarter Horses Take the Reins over Memorial Day at Jacksonville Equestrian Center

Photo courtesy of SD Photography.

Jacksonville, FL (June 1, 2018) – The Florida Quarter Horse Association hosted a three-day showing extravaganza at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center May 26-28, 2018.  High point awards were given out and over 200 classes offered something for everyone to enjoy.

Showcasing the versatility of the American Quarter Horse, the show offered a full slate of classes including trail, reining, and conformation.  On Friday the show organizers had a clinic for working hunter and equitation over fences and a trainers’ hospitality pizza party held at the Arena Café. Over the course of the weekend ten high point awards were awarded to horse and rider combinations.  Niftys Rock Star, ridden by Lauren Neily, won the Open VRH, Hot Chippin Charley, ridden by Brenda Baker, took home the Open Performance high point, and Sinceerly took home Halter Mare, while there was a tie for Halter Gelding between PF The Only One and Homerun Stats.

Coming up next for the Jacksonville Equestrian Center is the First Coast Classical Dressage show on June 23-24, followed by an all breed horse show on July 14th.

For more information about the Jacksonville Equestrian Center, visit www.jaxequestriancenter.com.

Jacksonville Equestrian Center
Tim Jones
904-255-4215
tjones@coj.net
13611 Normandy Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32221

Vanderveen and Bull Run’s Faustino de Tili Capture $35k 1.50m Welcome Stake CSI 3*

Kristen Vanderveen and Bull Run’s Faustino de Tili. Photo Credit ©Sportfot.

Hardin Towell and Sandetto Open Week with Win in $6,000 1.40m Power & Speed CSI 3*

Mill Spring, NC – May 31, 2018 – Kristen Vanderveen (USA) and Bull Run’s Faustino de Tili jumped to the top of the leaderboard during the $35,000 1.50m Welcome Stake CSI 3* of Tryon Spring V at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC). Vanderveen and the 2005 Belgian Warmblood stallion (Berlin x Udarco), owned by Bull Run Jumper’s Six LLC, blazed through fast-track timers in 33.662 seconds, claiming first place in the competitive class.

Of her well-known mount, Vanderveen commented, “He’s been feeling really good for the past couple of weeks, but it just hasn’t really gone our way the last few times. Today, he felt great. I had a great warm-up and I thought that going in. The course was really well done. It was just enough that it was fun and competitive, but not entirely out of control.”

Second place honors were awarded to Carlos Ramirez (COL) and his own 2005 Belgian Warmblood stallion Happy Wandor Van’t Roosakker (Wandor Van de Mispelaere x V Cento), after riding to a jump-off time of 36.933 seconds around the Anthony D’Ambrosio (USA) designed course. Samuel Parot (CHI) and Dazzle White, a 2008 Dutch Warmblood gelding (Calvino Z x Narcos II), rounded out the top three, jumping the short-course in 38.788 seconds.

Vanderveen and Bull Run’s Faustino de Tili have become fan favorites at TIEC as the pair have amassed an impressive record at the venue over the past few years. Vanderveen plans to continue her season in Tryon, competing in next week’s CSI 4*, before taking a small break.

“I’ll be competing here in next week’s CSI 4*,” she explained, “and we’ll actually take a break for two weeks after that. It’s been a while since we’ve had that kind of break and then we’ll be back here for a few weeks. My fall season really picks up this year. I’m trying to develop some of my eight- and nine-year-old horses, so that I have some coming up behind Frosty.”

The pair is coming off an intense spring campaign that included representing the United States at the FEI World Cup Finals™ in Paris, France at the end of April. Of her first European experience, Vanderveen said, “It was great and it was my first time going over to Europe, so that in and of itself was great to experience. I think you realize once you’re there that when you’re here in Tryon, you compete with just as good a quality of riders. It was helpful to have that to keep expectations realistic and to understand that it’s not necessarily a whole new sport over there. It’s the same.”

The $6,000 1.40m Power & Speed CSI 3* competition hosted on Wednesday, May 30 to start the week awarded the blue ribbon to Hardin Towell (USA) and Vlock Show Stables LLC’s Sandetto, a 2008 Oldenburg stallion (Sandro Boy x Chellano Z), after the pair crossed through the timers in 28.872 seconds. Santiago Lambre (MEX) and his own 2008 Belgian Warmblood stallion Ibabco (Nabab de Reve x Darco) clinched second place, riding to a time of 29.654 seconds. Daniel Bedoya (BOL) and Carolyn M. Elsey’s 2004 Zangersheide mare (Quasimodo Z x Nimmerdor) Quilona V Z took third, marking 30.005 seconds.

Please visit www.tryon.com or call (828)-863-1000 for more information.

McLain Ward Makes Devon History with Tenth Career $250k Sapphire Grand Prix Win

Photo: McLain Ward and Clinta.

Devon, Pa. – May 31, 2018 – Thursday night at the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair once again belonged to the “King of Devon” McLain Ward of Brewster, New York, who surpassed 31 contenders to claim the $250,000 Sapphire Grand Prix of Devon CSI4* for a record tenth time in his career. Ward rode the 11-year-old Oldenburg mare, Clinta, owned by Sagamore Farms, around the famed Dixon Oval in front of a packed crowd, consisting of diehard show jumping fans to Pennsylvania locals, hoping to witness some of the greatest names in the sport of show jumping go head-to-head for the most coveted trophy in the Devon collection: the Celeste McNeal Harper Perpetual Trophy.

Hunt Tosh and Flamingo K Claim $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby

Thursday afternoon at the Devon Horse Show brought top hunter horses and riders together to showcase their best efforts in the $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, sponsored by the Wheeler family. At the end of the afternoon, it was Hunt Tosh of Alpharetta, Georgia and Ceil Wheeler’s Flamingo K who bested the playing field of 30 other entries.

Amanda Murchison and CH Spread The Word Earn Three-Peat Devon Blue in Adult Three-Gaited English Show Pleasure

The Dixon Oval saw “Devon at Sunset” take place on Thursday, where highlighted events included the Adult Three-Gaited English Show Pleasure class with eight horse-and-rider combinations. For the third year in a row, it was Amanda Murchison and her own CH Spread The Word who took home the Robin Hill Challenge Trophy in the competitive class.

For more information, please visit www.DevonHorseShow.net.

Media Contact: Rebecca Walton
Phelps Media Group, Inc. International
phone 561.753.3389 fax 561.753.3386
info@phelpsmediagroup.com

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