Tag Archives: Ashley Vogel

Over $1 Million Distributed to Local Non-Profit Orgs. at the 12th Annual Great Charity Challenge

Shane Sweetnam and Heart on Fire ©Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – February 6, 2021 – HOPE: one word, four letters and so much more. For 46 Palm Beach County Charities, the feeling of hope shifted into a reality on Saturday, February 6, at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC). What is usually the biggest night of the 12-week Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), the Great Charity Challenge presented by Fidelity Investments® (GCC) pivoted to a blend of in-person competition for riders and virtual celebration for charities and supporters. Those supporters cheered as equestrians and their mounts, representing local non-profit organizations, competed for a share of more than $1 million in prize money.

Held at PBIEC in Wellington, Palm Beach County, Florida the past 12 years, the GCC has become a highlight of the winter season and has distributed a stunning $15,928,227.66 to 276 local non-profit organizations.

Determined to show the power of united communities, the GCC is an exciting show jumping event that combines equestrian sports and philanthropy, bringing hope to Palm Beach County charities every year. Three riders made up the top team of the night out of 23 pro-am combinations, which are paired with randomly selected Palm Beach County charities. Each team was made up of junior and amateur riders competing side-by-side with top professionals, including Olympians.

In addition to the 23 charities that were part of the GCC competition, an additional 24 non-profits received funding through grants that were awarded leading up to the event. For a full list of benefiting non-profit organizations, we invite you to visit: www.GreatCharityChallenge.com.

“Seeing the level of need in our community and knowing how difficult the past year has been, we quickly realized that we couldn’t turn our backs on our most vulnerable neighbors,” said GCC co-founder Mark Bellissimo. “We are truly grateful to see that the community was able to adapt to this format while stepping up to provide crucial funding to local organizations.”

A moment of silence at the beginning of the event paid recognition to all of the friends of GCC we lost and those who we lost to the pandemic in the past year.

Following a year of uncertainties and challenges, the GCC featured riders dressed up in costumes and horses adorned to match them, paying recognition to the #Heroes who stepped up during the pandemic as well as those who have inspired us to push beyond our own limits and driven us to “dream bigger.”

The winning team of riders – Lindsey Tomeu riding Bonapart, Ashley Vogel on Lucy in the Sky, and Shane Sweetnam aboard Heart on Fire – sponsored by team sponsor Spy Coast and Preston and corporate sponsor Diamante Dressage, came in the ring representing the United States Army as their heroes and finished with a time of 91.664 seconds. Their strategy and teamwork paid off for their assigned charity YWCA of Palm Beach County, a local non-profit organization that is dedicated to eliminating racism, empowering women, and promoting peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all, earning them the top prize of $100,000. The sliding scale for the balance of the proceeds, down to 22nd place winning a minimum of $15,000, ensured that everyone was a winner.

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

Ben Maher and Tic Tac Claim Victory in $137,000 Restylane Grand Prix CSI3*

Ben Maher and Tic Tac. © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – It was a thrilling finish for the final day of the second week of FEI competition at the 2021 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) as Olympic team gold medalist Ben Maher (GBR) and the 18-year-old stallion Tic Tac, owned by Jane Forbes Clark, edged the competition by just one one-hundredth of a second to take top honors in the $137,000 Restylane Grand Prix CSI3* on Sunday, January 24.

On the derby field at Equestrian Village, a total of 42 entries entered the ring to tackle the course designed by Oscar Soberon (USA) with 12 qualifying to return for the jump-off. Maher executed the track flawlessly aboard the SBS stallion by Clinton x Panama Du Seigneur, leaving all eight obstacles in their cups to secure the win in a blistering time of 43.56 seconds, just one one-hundredth of a second ahead of Canada’s Eric Lamaze.

Ashley Vogel Marks Another Win in the $25,000 FEI Hermès U25 Grand Prix

The U25 riders took to the Derby Field at Equestrian Village on Sunday afternoon to contest the first $25,000 Hermès U25 Grand Prix, and the class of 55 welcomed 10 back for the jump-off on the Oscar Soberon-designed course. The U25 Series will return for WEF 4 with the $25,000 Hermès U25 Grand Prix Series Team Event.

Notching their second U25 victory of the week, Ashley Vogel (USA) and her 2009 Zangersheide mare Bellissimo Z (Bamako de Muze x C’est Elle Z) flew through the jump-off timers in 39.10 seconds, solidifying the blue ribbon during their first week ever competing on the Derby Field.

Trailing just behind the duo was Lucy Deslauriers (USA) aboard the Luja LLC’s 2011 Selle Francais gelding Billy de Beaufor (Allegreto x HH Rosine De Beaufor), finishing with 39.43 seconds on the clock. Third place went to the USA’s Tanner Korotkin and Deauville S, a 2006 Holsteiner gelding (Diamante de Semilly x Touch of Class) owned by Castlewood Farm Inc., who concluded their jump-off in 40.56 seconds.

Mark Bluman and Noortje Vd Windheuvel Victorious in the $30,000 CP Grand Prix

It was a day of firsts for Mark Bluman (ISR) as he and his mount, the eight-year-old Noortje Vd Windheuvel owned by Over the Top Stables, LLC, flew to the top of the podium in the $30,000 CP Grand Prix, their first grand prix class together. They were also first to go in the starting order, first to return in the jump-off, and as luck would have it, they ended the class in first place with a double-clear effort in a time of 42.784 seconds.

“Since we got her I’ve been saying that she [was] one of the most talented seven-year-olds I’ve ever ridden,” he beamed. “She has a great attitude, she’s quiet, and she always wants to do a good job for you. She’s fast, scopey, and has all the qualities to be a real grand prix horse.”

The Belgian Warmblood mare by Farfleu De Muze x Calista Vd Windheuvel showed those aforementioned qualities as they raced around the shortened course with authority to solidify the win.

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

Ward and Contagious Capture $37,000 CaptiveOne Advisors 1.50m Classic CSI3*

McLain Ward and Contagious. © Sportfot.

January 23, 2021 – Wellington, FL – It was an action-packed afternoon on the Derby Field at Equestrian Village at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center, with McLain Ward (USA) and Contagious climbing to the top of the leaderboard in the $37,000 CaptiveOne Advisors 1.50m Classic CSI3* on Saturday, January 23.

Ashley Vogel and Sophia Studd Dominate the First Day of Hermès U25 Series

In the $10,000 Hermès U25 Welcome, Ashley Vogel (USA) and Bellissimo Z flew through the timers in 67.49 seconds, besting a competitive class of 54 entries. Second place was awarded to the USA’s Tanner Korotkin on Deauville S, a 2006 Holsteiner gelding (Diamant de Semilly x Touch of Class) owned by Castlewood Farm Inc., who completed the track in 68.87 seconds. Third place went to Charlise Casas (USA) and Always Faithful Equine LLC’s 2008 Holsteiner gelding Diamond M (Numero Uno x Zarina M), ending on 70.21 seconds.

In the $1,000 Hermès U25 1.40m, Sophia Studd (DEN) and the 2009 Danish Warmblood mare Holsteins Matina (Party Dance x Mont Clarissa) owned by Marie Botved Studd captured the win, crossing through the timers in 67.70 seconds. Hunter Champey (USA) and Caprice, a 2007 KWPN mare (Kashmir Van Schuttershof x Jalisca Houtheem Z) owned by MDHT Equestrian, LLC, took second place in 78.65 seconds. Third place went to Eric Krawitt (CAN) piloting Godfather B Bellesbat (Numero Uno x Ustasia), a 2011 KWPN mare owned by AES Equestrian.

Becky Gochman Rides Mythical to the Championship in Amateur-Owner Hunters 3’3” 36 and Over

Hunter riders entered the E. R. Mische Grand Hunter Ring on Saturday to compete for the tricolor ribbon in the Amateur-Owner Hunter 3’3” 36 and Over division. After two days of competition, Becky Gochman and Gochman Sport Horses LLC’s Mythical received first, second, and fifth place ribbons to earn the championship title.

Gochman, of Wellington, FL, and Mythical have been partnered for several years and are no strangers to the winner’s circle. Mythical is considered an important member of the Gochman family, having also been ridden by both Mimi and Sophie Gochman.

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