Tag Archives: Darragh Kenny

Darragh Kenny and Dirocco B, Sarah Scheiring and Eros SCF Win Adequan Young Jumper Classics

Darragh Kenny and Dirocco B. Photos © Sportfot.

Say When and Danielle Baran Start and Finish WEF 2015 as Champions of the Triple Crown Blankets Adult Amateur Hunter 36-49 Section A

Wellington, FL – March 27, 2015 – Week twelve of the 2015 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), sponsored by Rolex, continued on Friday featuring the rising equine stars of the circuit in their young jumper finals. The $20,000 Adequan® 7-Year-Old Young Jumper Classic saw a win for Darragh Kenny and Dirocco B, and the $15,000 Adequan® 6-Year-Old Young Jumper Classic was won by Sarah Scheiring and Eros SCF. The $10,000 Holtgers 5-Year-Old Young Jumper Classic was held in the morning, rewarding clear rounds from the circuit’s youngest horses.

WEF 12 continues through Sunday, March 29. The week features the $500,000 Rolex Grand Prix CSI 5* on Saturday, March 28, and the $100,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic Final will also be held on Saturday. The 1.50m jump-off and the Rolex Grand Prix, starting at 6:30 pm, will be live streamed here: http://bit.ly/1MaVwBa. The $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby will host its first round on Saturday; its second round on the derby field Sunday, starting at 1 pm, will be live streamed at http://bit.ly/1H5mkfF.

Steve Stephens (USA) set the courses for Friday’s young jumpers classes. The $20,000 Adequan® 7-Year-Old Young Jumper Classic concluded the day with a win for Ireland’s Darragh Kenny aboard Oakland Ventures and Missy Clark’s Dirocco B. Seventy-eight entries showed in the class, with 18 clear to jump-off, and seven double clear rounds. The riders were given the option to jump-off immediately following their first round or to wait until the end.

Kenny waited until the end of the class to jump off and raced to the winning time of 36.531 seconds with Dirocco B. He edged out Laura Chapot, who had jumped off earlier with Mary Chapot’s BEC Hugo in 38.40 seconds. Lauren Tisbo and Tequestrian Farms LLC’s Hip Girl finished third in 39.42 seconds.

Kenny and Missy Clark purchased Dirocco B two months ago. The Dutch Warmblood gelding (Zirocco Blue VDL x Lux Z) previously had great success as a six-year-old with rider Devin Ryan, and Kenny has high hopes for the horse’s career.

“I got him through a good friend of mine, Andy Kocher,” Kenny detailed. “He had the horse, and I tried him once or twice and really liked him. He is unbelievably competitive. He is super careful, really fast, and extremely brave. He reminds me a lot of my good horse Picolo. He is the same type of horse that will win every class, and you can go all the time. I think it is a super nice horse.”

“We bought the horse together as a horse for the future,” Kenny said of his partnership with Clark. “I think it is going to be really talented. I am very lucky that Missy is helping me to get a few horses together to build up my career. I am very lucky that I have some very good owners right now, and I just want to keep trying to have younger horses coming up through the levels so that I have them when my older horses are ready to be done.”

Kenny continued, “It is hard to know what they will do. He is one of those horses where you are not going to know until you do it. He jumps every height just as easy as he likes, and then you move up and he does that the same way, so I’ll never know until I have to try to do it.”

Commenting on his jump-off round, Kenny detailed, “He is a really naturally very quick horse. You do not really need to change the pace. You just pick up a good pace, and he stays going and then all I had to do was put him at the right distance.”

Scheiring and Eros SCF Go for the Win

In the $15,000 Adequan® 6-Year-Old Young Jumper Classic, 57 horses showed, with 14 clear for the jump-off and seven double clear rounds. The riders were once again given the option to jump-off immediately or wait until the conclusion of the first round. Lisa Goldman and Melissa Hirt’s Roc N Groovy jumped off early and eventually finished second with their time of 33.66 seconds. Sarah Scheiring and Lauren Gristwood’s Eros SCF jumped off later, taking the lead with their time of 32.22 seconds. Sarah Kerins and her own Tykillen Livella clocked in at 35.77 seconds to place third.

Sarah Scheiring and Eros SCF
Sarah Scheiring and Eros SCF

Eros SCF is a Dutch Warmblood gelding by Balou du Rouet x Coriano, bred by Karin Jimenez (USA) at Sporting Chance Farm in Pennsylvania. His rider, Sarah Scheiring, is based out of Chester Riding Club in New Jersey with trainer Jamie Maillet. His owner, Lauren Gristwood, was a working student at the farm five years ago, and was looking for a project after selling her previous horse. They found Eros SCF as a yearling, and Gristwood immediately bought him after seeing the horse’s great movement and quiet demeanor.

Gristwood, of Virginia, broke the horse herself. She occasionally rides Eros at home when she has the time, but leaves the showing duties to Scheiring. She currently works as a groom for Canadian show jumper Ben Asselin.

“The first time I ever got on him was bareback in a field,” Gristwood noted. “Sarah is the only other person that has ridden him. He was my first yearling. I love the young ones. It is really cool starting them from the ground up and see the progress.”

“You would not believe how many people told Lauren how bad of a decision she was making when she first got him,” Scheiring explained. “Every single person said, ‘Why would you do that? That is so dumb! Why would you buy a one-year-old horse? Who knows what it’s going to be?’ But she believed in me. She always has. Last year she turned the reins over to me, and he has been unbelievable ever since.”

“He is perfect. He is wonderful, and he never lets me down,” Scheiring said of Eros. She then described the day they first saw him.

“He walked great,” she remembered with a laugh. “It was winter; the ground was rock hard with snow. We put a pole in the round pen, made him trot over it, and he would not canter. We said, ‘Okay, we can work with that.’ Also, a dog came barreling in the barn when he was on the crossties, and he did not flinch at all.”

Eros SCF only showed in three classes this winter as Scheiring geared him toward Friday’s final classic. Commenting on their winning round, Scheiring detailed, “I saw Lisa Goldman go first, and she is always fast. She is hard to beat. My horse jumps really high and spends a lot of time in the air, so I knew I had to make it up in the lines and I had to leave one out. He is really good at turning, so I could land and turn. I walked the line from the Sotheby’s jump to number 15 and walked a seven and stuck to it. It was a little bit scary, but that horse is so careful, I know he is not going to knock it down if I can get him there.”

In addition to their winning prize, Scheiring and Eros SCF accepted the Champion Equine Insurance Jumper Style Award for week twelve. With a great day to conclude his winter, Eros SCF will have a little time off and then show in the summer with the main goal of competing in the Young Jumper Championships at the Hampton Classic Horse Show in August.

Also showing on Friday, the $10,000 Holtgers 5-Year-Old Young Jumper Classic was held in the morning, awarding prize money for clear rounds overall from the promising young horses. Todd Minikus and Spring Girl, Victor Amaya and Donald Cheska Stables’ Foreigner, Nick Novak and Ricochet, Ronan McGuigan and Blythe Masters’ Maximus, Charlie Jayne and Haylie Rolfe’s Zara, Emily Hill and KBS Ronnin, and Candice King and Bellissimo LLC’s First VDL all cleared the course without fault.

Say When and Danielle Baran Start and Finish WEF 2015 as Champions of the Triple Crown Blankets Adult Amateur Hunter 36-49 Section A

No stranger to the winner’s circle, Danielle Baran, from Ontario, Canada, and her horse, Say When, added another tricolor ribbon to their collection during the final week of WEF. This past weekend Baran earned a first, a second, and two fourths over fences on their way to topping the field of 17 riders in the Triple Crown Blankets Adult Amateur Hunter 36-49 Section A. After kicking off WEF as champions during week 1, Baran exclaimed, “We haven’t had a down time during this entire circuit, which is incredible!”

Claiming the reserve champion spot was Carlotta with owner and rider, Ashley Hodges. Hodges rode Carlotta to a first, a second, and a fourth over fences in the Triple Crown Blankets Adult Amateur Hunter 36-49 Section A.

With a final championship during week 12, Baran secured the circuit championship with Say When in the Adult Amateur 36-49 Hunter division. Baran also finished as reserve circuit champion with her horse, Vizcaya. “She has had an amazing season!” trainer Chris Sorensen stated. “Wellington is always a big test for us because we go up against the best horses and riders in North America. Danielle [Baran] has been one of the top hunter owners in Canada for the past couple of years, so it is nice to see her come down here and have a great season.”

Coming to Wellington with the same horses as last year, Baran credits the extra help from trainer Darcy Hayes for her best WEF circuit yet. “I’ve never had a year this consistent. Darcy [Hayes] has really helped prepare the horses, and I enjoy having two trainers supporting me at the ring,” Baran explained.

After an amazing start to 2015, Baran is looking forward to fine tuning her riding throughout the rest of the year. “I want to make sure it doesn’t look like luck,” Baran smiled.

Baran went on to say, “Eventually I would like to move up to the Amateur-Owner 3’3″ and will probably buy another horse with Chris [Sorensen] in the next couple of years to add in some new ones. Hopefully I can keep my horses going as long as possible because I adore them and feel blessed to have them.”

While Baran is done showing, Say When will compete tomorrow in the USHJA International Hunter Derby with Hayes. At the conclusion of the weekend, Baran and her horses will take a break before returning to Ontario for the summer shows.

WEF 12 continues on Saturday evening featuring the $100,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic Final jump-off followed by the $500,000 Rolex Grand Prix CSI 5* in the International Arena. Hunter coverage returns to the E. R. Mische Grand Hunter ring for the Bainbridge Amateur-Owner Hunter 18-35 and the first round of the USHJA International Hunter Derby. For full results and more information, please visit www.pbiec.com.

Lauren Fisher and Maddy Stover for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.

Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
info@jenniferwoodmedia.com

Darragh Kenny Earns One-Two Finish in $34,000 Spy Coast Farm 1.45m at the 2015 WEF

Darragh Kenny and Picolo. Photo © Sportfot.

Tomeu, Burlington, Gilbertson and Foley Claim $25,000 Artisan Farms Under 25 Team Event; T. J. O’Mara and Kaskade Receive High Score in the WIHS Equitation Hunter Phase

Wellington, FL – January 30, 2015 – Show jumping action at the 2015 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) took place on both sides of the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) on Friday with classes for top international show jumpers as well as young up-and-coming talents.

In the International Arena on the main show grounds, Darragh Kenny (IRL) took the top two spots in Friday’s $34,000 Spy Coast Farm 1.45m speed class aboard Oakland Ventures LLC’s Picolo and Toffolon Partners LLC’s Gatsby. The $25,000 Artisan Farms Under 25 Grand Prix Team Event, presented by the McNerney Family, was held in the International Ring at The Stadium at PBIEC with a win for the team of Kaely Tomeu, Brett Burlington, Lacey Gilbertson and Tom Foley.

Week four of the 2015 Winter Equestrian Festival, sponsored by Fidelity Investments®, continues through Sunday, February 1. The week will feature the $372,000 FEI World Cup™ Grand Prix CSI-W 5*, presented by Fidelity Investments®, on Saturday, January 31. Other highlights include the $85,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Classic on Sunday, February 1.

The $50,000 Wellington Eventing Showcase, presented by Asheville Regional Airport, will finish with their final two phases on Saturday, January 31. The cross-country begins at 1:30 pm on The Stadium derby field. The special showcase will feature some of eventing’s top horses and riders competing for phenomenal prize money in the winter equestrian capital of the world.

Both of tomorrow’s phases of the $50,000 Wellington Eventing Showcase, presented by Asheville Regional Airport, and Saturday night’s $372,000 FEI World Cup™ Grand Prix CSI-W 5*, presented by Fidelity Investments®, will be live streamed at www.COTH.com.

Guilherme Jorge (BRA) set the track for Friday’s 1.45m with 51 competitors and 23 clear rounds. Tiffany Foster (CAN) and Artisan Farms LLC’s Melody des Hayettes Z set the leading pace at 60.31 seconds to eventually finish sixth. Alvaro de Miranda (BRA) upped the time in 59.49 seconds with his own and Victory Equestrian Sport BV’s AD Amigo B, but was later pushed to fifth place. Darragh Kenny jumped into the lead with Gatsby in a time of 57.87 seconds, but soon topped himself to put Gatsby in second. Jessica Springsteen (USA) followed with a clear round in 58.20 seconds to take third place honors riding Stone Hill Farm’s Davendy S. The only person who could beat Darragh Kenny was Kenny himself as the rider topped his own time in the winning round with Picolo in 57.13 seconds. Conor Swail (IRL) jumped into fourth place in the end in 59.26 seconds aboard Vanessa Mannix’s Grand Cru vd Jijf Eiken.

“I just said to somebody that for these classes with those two horses, it is difficult not to be in the top six,” Kenny said of Picolo and Gatsby after his top-two finish. “They are two incredible horses. They are so careful, they are really fast, and you can do whatever you want with them.”

Kenny’s winning mount, Picolo, is a 12-year-old Selle Francais gelding by Diamant de Semilly x Alme. With Kenny in the irons, Picolo jumped to an impressive eight FEI victories in 2014 alone. The horse had a four-month break and started back last week with a couple of 1.40m classes. He stepped right up to the 1.45m this week and never missed a beat.

“Honestly, this horse is just amazing. Every time I ride him he is unbelievable. I have never, ever had a horse like this,” Kenny proclaimed. “He just wants to win so much, and he tries so hard. He is so competitive, and he is just an incredible horse.”

Second place finisher, Gatsby, is an 11-year-old Irish Sport Horse stallion (Simba x Cruise On) that normally competes with amateur rider Allison Toffolon.

“Ali usually shows him, and she is coming in two weeks. I thought I’d show him this week just to give him a round, and it is just easy,” Kenny stated. “Their styles are a little bit different. I know Picolo so well. I know Gatsby quite well, but not as well. I went fast with Gatsby. I did four strides along one line, and I think Conor (Swail) was the only other person that did four there. Gatsby has such a big stride, so that is where you can be faster with him.”

“I saw Jessie (Springsteen) go and she was really fast and really good and that made me a little bit nervous,” Kenny admitted of his hold on the lead. “Then Eric (Lamaze) was really fast. He was actually faster than Gatsby, so I was a little more nervous. When I went with Picolo, I just wanted to make sure that I went as fast as I could possibly be. He is just incredible when you go against the clock. He is so easy. You just gallop at the jumps, and you never really worry that he is going to knock them down.”

Now that Picolo is off to a great start for his 2015 season, Kenny plans to move the horse up to some bigger classes.

“I am just starting to build him up,” the rider explained. “This is his second week back showing. He will probably jump the 1.50m this week. My goal is to jump him on the Nations Cup team here in week eight. Then he might jump one of the under the lights grand prixs after that. He has just been such a great horse. You can do whatever you want with him, so it is great to have him.”

Gatsby will continue to show in the High Amateur-Owner Jumpers with Toffolon, and they also have plans to compete in the Artisan Farms Under 25 Grand Prix Series throughout the circuit.

Also showing in the International Arena on Friday, the $6,000 Spy Coast Farm 1.40m Speed Challenge was held in a California Split with 95 total rounds. Laura Chapot (USA) was the fastest clear aboard Mary Chapot’s Zealous to win Section A. Roberto Teran, Jr. (ARG) won Section B aboard ARK Partners LLC’s Farina.

A $500 Shapley’s Groom’s Class was also held in the afternoon. The winner was Miguel Barrera with Revelation, owned by Lori Harvey from Laura Stern Stables. Second place went to Fernando (Uno) Mendoza with Parlay, owned by Laura Stern of Laura Stern Stables.

Tomeu, Burlington, Gilbertson and Foley Claim $25,000 Artisan Farms Under 25 Team Event

Competition in the $25,000 Artisan Farms Under 25 Team Event was tight to the very end Friday evening with the final placings being determined by a two-horse jump-off. Under the lights of The Stadium at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center, Kaely Tomeu led her team of Sweet Oak Farm riders to victory in a head-to-head duel against Eugenio Garza.

Two teams jumped clear in the first two rounds of competition, but only Tomeu kept the streak alive riding to her third clear trip of the night aboard Fidalgo van het Leliehof and delivering a win to fellow teammates Brett Burlington, Lacey Gilbertson and Tom Foley.

The Team Event is one phase of 2015 Artisan Farms Under 25 Grand Prix Series, presented by the Dutta Corp. in association with Guido Klatte which will offer $170,000 in prize money in seven featured events throughout the Winter Equestrian Festival.

In total, 16 teams competed in two rounds over a 12-effort course designed by Richard Jeffery (GBR). Jeffery will also set the track for the stadium jumping phase of the $50,000 Wellington Eventing Showcase, presented by Asheville Regional Airport highlighting Week 4 of the WEF on Saturday. After the evening’s first round, each team dropped their lowest score before advancing. In the second round, 15 teams returned in order of highest to lowest total faults. The winner was determined by the lowest total score after two rounds and a tie-breaking jump-off.

Garza’s four jump-off faults with Bariano – his only in the class – settled his team of Spencer Smith, Shawn Casady and Michael Murphy in second place. Smith with IV Ever and Casady on Twister jumped to a pair of double-clear efforts, while Murphy ended on 12 faults from two rounds.

Making Chef d’Equipe Shane Sweetnam and fellow trainer Michael DelFiandra proud, 19-year-old Tomeu jumped the final round of the night with a win hanging in the balance. “It was a lot of pressure, but it made me do better knowing that other people were counting on me,” she said. “It was going to be exciting no matter how I did because we would have had good results being second, but it was great going clear and winning.”

Fellow Sweet Oak Farm riders Gilbertson aboard Record De Pleville and Foley on Petrushka III ended on zero faults. Burlington and Anders Wictor L had a single rail in each round.

While not the oldest on the team, Tomeu brought the most Under 25 Grand Prix Series experience. After competing in 2012 and 2013, Tomeu didn’t chalk the win up to being a veteran, but rather gave credit to 10-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding Fidalgo van het Leliehof.

“This horse is amazing,” she said of the mount Sweetnam found for her in June. “I actually didn’t ride my best in the jump-off, but he pulled through for me. I landed off that last jump, realized we had won and knew it was all him that did it. I ride him in the High Amateur Jumpers and he really takes me around – he knows his job.”

Camaraderie from the barn aisle spilled over into the show ring during competition, according to 21-year-old Gilbertson. “Obviously we always want each other to do well because we ride in same barn, but it was special to be able to ride together on a team,” she said.

“We don’t get to do this very often,” added 15-year-old Burlington. “Showing in this stadium ring under the lights on a team was a fun experience.”

Riding last in the second round, 18-year-old Foley kept his team’s hopes for a win alive going clear and guaranteeing a jump-off. “It was good to go last – the pressure makes you try a little bit harder. My horse fought to the end for me,” he said of the 10-year-old KWPN mare he piloted. “It was more the horse than me to be honest.”

Third-place was a two-way tie between two four-person teams including Taylor Reid, Ryan Genn, Theo Genn and Richard Neal as well as Michael Hughes, Catherine Tyree, Katherine Strauss and Lucy Deslauriers. Both teams finished with four faults after two rounds.

The Artisan Farms Under 25 Grand Prix Series is designed to give young riders a valuable stepping-stone from the junior and amateur ranks to the grand prix level and culminates with the $50,000 Artisan Farms Under 25 Grand Prix Series Final. The Final will take place Sunday, March 22 on the grass derby field at The Stadium at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center during WEF 11.

T. J. O’Mara and Kaskade Receive High Score in the WIHS Equitation Hunter Phase

This morning in the Rost Arena, 58 junior riders came to compete in the WIHS Equitation Hunter Phase. After three hours of competition, T. J. O’Mara’s score of 90 was unbeatable, and O’Mara earned top honors in section A. Madison Goetzmann finished in second with a score of 88.5 and Katherine Bundy rounded out the top three with a score of 87 in section A.

Kelli Cruciotti won section B with a score of 89. Just behind Cruciotti was Ailish Cunniffe who earned a score of 88 to take home second place in section B. Lucy Deslauriers was the third place finisher in section B of the WIHS Equitation Hunter Phase with a score of 86.

O’Mara, from Rumson, NJ, was partnered with his own horse, Kaskade, today for the winning ride. Kaskade came to O’Mara two years ago having been a hunter, but O’Mara and his trainers at Beacon Hill thought Kaskade could be a good fit in the equitation. “We saw how much potential she [Kaskade] had, and we decided she would be an amazing equitation horse,” O’Mara explained.

Having come from the hunter ring, O’Mara and his trainers have been working on getting Kaskade softer and more accustomed to doing the tight turns required in the equitation. Talking about the preparation, O’Mara said, “This past week the trainers have been working with her [Kaskade], and she felt amazing today.”

While O’Mara and Kaskade started off the day on a high note winning the WIHS Hunter Phase, they also went on to win the WIHS Jumper Phase section A with a score of 91. With top scores in both phases, O’Mara was awarded the overall first place prize.

“I was worried about the jumper phase. The first line was forward and going to the right, so I was worried about Kaskade’s left drift and not making it up the line. Also, the last line was a very steady six to one and I thought she collected very well, making it easier than I thought it was going to be,” O’Mara commented about his Jumper Phase round.

After today’s win, O’Mara is qualified for the George Morris Excellence in Equitation class and is excited to compete in it during WEF 11. Looking past the WEF circuit, O’Mara has set his sights on continuing to win equitation classes throughout the summer, as well as have a successful equitation finals season this fall.

Equitation continues tomorrow with the THIS Children’s Medal 15-17 in ring 8. For full results and more information, please visit www.pbiec.com.

Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
info@jenniferwoodmedia.com

Darragh Kenny and Windbreaker Top Spy Coast Farm 1.40m Jump-Off at the 2015 WEF

Darragh Kenny and Windbreaker. Photos © Sportfot.

Brooke Banks Wins Adult Amateur 18-35 Section A Championship in First Week as Amateur Rider

Wellington, FL – January 9, 2015 – Week one of the 2015 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) continued on Friday at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL with the $6,000 Spy Coast Farm 1.40m jump-off and Speed Challenge classes held in the International Arena in the afternoon. The jump-off class went first with a win for Ireland’s Darragh Kenny aboard Windbreaker. The Speed Challenge saw a win for Laura Chapot (USA) and Shooting Star. The 12-week WEF circuit runs through March 29, 2015, awarding over $8.2 million in prize money.

Eric Hasbrouck (USA) set the course for the day’s 1.40m competition with a busy schedule of show jumping. The $6,000 Spy Coast Farm 1.40m jump-off class saw 77 entries in total 15 clears in round one. Entries jumped off immediately following their first round where seven more went double clear.

David Beisel and Equine Holdings LLC’s Ammeretto were the first pair to jump double clear over the short course and held the lead through much of the class with their time of 32.69 seconds, but eventually finished in third place. Darragh Kenny came along many rounds later with Windbreaker and took the lead in 31.89 seconds. Victoria Colvin and Karen Long Dwight’s Chanel B 2 jumped into second place at the end of the class in 32.59 seconds.

Class winner, Windbreaker, is a 12-year-old KWPN gelding by Heartbreaker x Farmer. Kenny explained that he was just schooling the horse for its owner, but easily breezed past the leaders to take over the top position.

“This is only the second time I have ridden the horse,” Kenny detailed. “It is trained by Laura Bowery, and it is owned by Kerry McCahill. It is actually her junior jumper. I was just riding it in a class or two for her this week to give it a school.”

“Laura said to me that it is a really quick horse and it is super easy, so it was easy to go fast on him,” Kenny said of his jump-off. “He is super nice to ride, very uncomplicated and very careful. I think he will make a really good junior jumper.”

“I didn’t know the horse and actually I didn’t see David go either, so I just went as quick as the horse felt comfortable with and it turned out to be good enough,” Kenny added of his round. “It is a quick horse and he is very uncomplicated, so I could do whatever I wanted, and it was very easy just to be fast on him.”

Kenny praised this week’s course designer, Eric Hasbrouck, on another great track, noting, “He has been super. Eric is a brilliant course designer. He rode himself, so he knows a lot about it and I think the courses this week have been great.”

Kenny looks to show Windbreaker a few more times throughout the circuit in preparation for his rider. “It will be just doing the same thing, a couple of schooling classes to have him set up for Kerry, and Laura will ride him a little bit as well. Between us all I think the horse should go really well,” he stated.

Kenny has a big group of horses to show throughout the winter and looks forward to a great few months. “I have a lot of good horses for this circuit, so hopefully it goes really well,” he concluded.

Also competing in the International Arena on Friday, the $6,000 Spy Coast Farm 1.40m Speed Challenge was held later in the afternoon with a win for Laura Chapot aboard Mary Chapot’s Shooting Star. Forty-nine entries showed with 13 clear rounds. Chapot and Shooting Star jumped the fastest clear round in 62.14 seconds early in the class. Nicolas Pizarro and Jacobo Zaga’s Calvaretto finished second in 62.45 seconds. Chapot also took third place honors with Mary Chapot’s Zealous in 62.84 seconds.

Brooke Banks Wins Adult Amateur 18-35 Section A Championship in First Week as Amateur Rider

While it’s far from Brooke Banks’ maiden season in Wellington, she is jumping her first fences as an amateur rider this week. When the clock struck 12 on New Year’s Eve, she shed her junior status and set her sights once again on the 2015 Winter Equestrian Festival, this time as an amateur. Not letting her new title faze her, however, Banks jumped her own eight-year-old Mecklenburg gelding Brodeur to the championship in Section A of the Adult Amateur 18-35 Hunter division.

Brooke Banks and Brodeur
Brooke Banks and Brodeur

Banks and Brodeur boasted two third-place performances over fences yesterday and returned today to win both the Under Saddle and the first of two final jumping tests. Trainer Ron Esposito admits that watching the always quiet and regal Brodeur take home the brag-worthy flat win was no surprise.

“I’ve only met two Mecklenburgs, but they were both quiet and consistent,” he said. “I don’t have many in my barn, but I plan to find more.”

Posting consistent top performances, Lexey Hall collected Reserve Champion aboard her own Lacoste. The pair was first and second over fences yesterday and returned to collect third today, as well as fourth under saddle.

Banks has enjoyed her share of early success with Brodeur, a horse she only acquired a year ago from Patricia Griffith and Heritage Farm. Their 2014 goal of jumping at USEF Junior Hunter Finals was realized at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show this summer. “I rode him in Hunter Finals in Harrisburg, was fourth overall and haven’t ridden him since,” said Banks.

A freshman at Cornell University, 18-year-old Banks is juggling a Communications course load and collegiate extracurricular activities, in addition to a robust riding schedule, leaving Brodeur’s schooling to Esposito. “My trainer kept him [Brodeur] in great shape for me. To come back to WEF and win right away is a great feeling. I’m really excited for the rest of the circuit – I am hoping to get down here more than originally planned,” she commented.

Banks is focused on showing consistently at 3’6″ in the coming months and looks forward to making more time for Brodeur. “I love that his stride is big, but he goes slow – every distance is always right there. His jump is so smooth, and he comes up nicely with his knees,” she said.

While an obvious competitor in the ring, Brodeur is a pocket-pony in the barn, according to Banks. “He has the best personality – in the barn he is so quiet and always sleeping,” she concluded with a smile. “He’s like a pet that then goes into the ring and jumps around beautifully.”

The 2015 Winter Equestrian Festival continues in the International Arena on Saturday with the $25,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic at 2 p.m. and the $75,000 Battle of the Sexes, the first “Saturday Night Lights” event of the circuit, at 7 p.m. Hunter and equitation competition continue as well with the EnTrust Capital Small Junior Hunter 16-17 division awarding championships in the Mische Grand Hunter Ring. For full results and more information, please visit www.pbiec.com.

Lauren Fisher and Lindsay Brock for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.

Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
info@jenniferwoodmedia.com
803.240.7488

Darragh Domination of American Gold Cup CSI4*-W Continues with Third Win in a Row

Darragh Kenny and Prof De La Roque jump onto the tabletop in Saturday’s $34,000 Fidelity Investments Speed Derby.

North Salem, NY – September 13, 2014 – Darragh Kenny has done it again. For the third day in a row, the talented Irish athlete made headlines at the American Gold Cup CSI4*-W, this time after clinching the victory in the $34,000 Fidelity Investments Speed Derby CSI4*.

The Speed Derby victory comes amidst an unbelievable American Gold Cup winning streak for Kenny. On Thursday, he blew the competition out of the water to claim victory in the $34,000 Don Little Memorial Welcome aboard Gatsby. On Friday, the pair did it again, turning in the fastest clear jump off time to win the $100,000 Hermès American Gold Cup Qualifier. A third victory for Kenny however, would not come without a hard earned fight for the fastest finish.

Fellow Irishman Ronan McGuigan galloped into the Speed Derby course aboard Capall Zidane with guns blazing. McGuigan successfully navigated the rolling terrain and the 14 obstacles of the Alan Wade designed course set on the grass grand prix field of Old Salem Farm, to turn in a clear ride in 79.890 seconds.

Fifteen more horse and rider combinations completed the course that wound around the Old Salem Farm grand prix field. None would come close to matching or besting McGuigan’s time. But Kenny was determined to keep his phenomenal win streak alive and not even a downed rail would stop him from doing just that.

Aboard Prof De La Roque, owned by Postage Stamp Farm, LLC of Wellington, FL, Kenny flew over the course, up and down the tabletop fences and down a slight grassy embankment at an impressive clip. The speed caught up to the pair at one fence as a rail rolled out of the cups and hit the grass, but at the end, Kenny and Prof De La Roque blazed through the finish line timers in 75.850 seconds.

That time was just four-hundredths of a second fast enough to earn the victory, even with the additional four seconds added for the rail penalties, relegating McGuigan to second place. Rounding out the top three were Peter Lutz and Robin De Ponthual who finished clear in a time of 81.170 seconds.

The victory on Saturday with Prof De La Roque is not only the third major victory in the same number of days at the American Gold Cup for Kenny; it comes in the midst of what has been a year of incredible success for Kenny.

Most recently, he earned back-to-back wins at the Hampton Classic Horse Show before immediately boarding a plane to France for the World Equestrian Games where he was named 12th in the world.

“It’s been going amazing. I’ve had an incredible year,” Kenny said. “To be honest, it’s very little to do with me. It has to do with the horses that I have, the people that are behind me and the staff that work with me. The team behind all of me is all of them. That’s what makes everything go so well.”

Kenny and his team will now set their sights on the feature event of the 2014 American Gold Cup: the $200,000 American Gold Cup CSI4*-W Grand Prix. He and Gatsby will join some of the world’s top competitors on Sunday at 2 p.m.

Flo Fulton First in $10,000 Mitchell-Innes & Nash Fine Art Adult Jumper Classic

The Adult Jumpers rode to their finale today in the $10,000 Mitchell-Innes & Nash Fine Art Adult Jumper Classic. From a field of 55 horses, 23 advanced to jump-off before Flo Fulton and her mount Mirell rode away with the win.

Flo Fulton and Mirell
Flo Fulton and Mirell

“We got [Mirell] in February, and we really clicked from the beginning,” Fulton said of the 8-year-old Hanoverian mare. “She’s really a little winner. When we’re feeling on, we always have great rounds. She doesn’t like you to fuss with her or push and pull. Once you get the motor going, she’ll really just take you to the fence.”

Outside of riding, Fulton, who trains with Jeffery Welles, operates her own consulting firm, aiding luxury brands with strategic events. She, her husband and their dog split their time between New York, Los Angeles, CA and Colorado, but she always enjoys traveling to the American Gold Cup.

“I love this farm. I love the Morrisseys [of Stadium Jumping]. They run an amazing horse show,” Fulton said. “I also love that they have the Hermès booth here so that I can do a little shopping!”

Finishing in a close second behind Fulton were Dean Dignelli and Redefin, while Laura Faulkner and Pompadour rounded out the top three.

Top Equitation Riders Compete in the Region 2 ASPCA/NHSAA Maclay Regional Championship

While the American Gold Cup CSI4*-W is a renowned show dedicated almost strictly to show jumping, it is also home to the esteemed Region 2 ASPCA/NHSAA Maclay Regional Championships.

A top finish in one of the ASPCA/NHSAA Maclay Regional Finals is necessary to advance to the prestigious ASPCA Alfred B. Maclay National Championship at the National Horse Show in Kentucky on Nov. 2, 2014.

Taking the top three spots in today’s Region 2 Finals were Michael Hughes, Ailish Cunniffe and Lucy Deslauriers, respectively.

Tune in to the exciting conclusion of the 2014 American Gold Cup Sunday at 2 p.m. with the live streaming of the $200,000 American Gold Cup CSI4*-W Grand Prix available here!

More information can be found by visiting the www.theamericangoldcup.com or www.stadiumjumping.com.

45th Annual American Gold Cup Fast Facts

What:
The $200,000 American Gold Cup, an FEI World Cup Qualifying Competition CSI4*-W

When:
September 10-14, 2014

Where:
Old Salem Farm, 190 June Road, North Salem, NY

Hours:
8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Wednesday to Saturday with the ASPCA Regional Championships on Saturday afternoon.

Facility: Old Salem Farm is New York State’s Westchester County’s premier equestrian facility, offering 26 annual competitions, boarding, top-level training and sales. It offers state-of-the-art facilities surrounded by 120 gorgeous acres.

Stabling:
Stalls are 10 x 10 and housed under canvas. The FEI stalls are 10 x 12 and stabling area will be secured by fencing with 24/7 security. FEI horses will be scheduled to school separately from non-FEI horses. Schedules will be posted and riders will be given notification of times during the horse inspection.

Parking:
Available on the grounds

Directions:
From Interstate 84 or Interstate 287: Take interstate 684 to exit 8 (Hardscrabble Road), turn right. Old Salem Farm is on the right.

Information:
Before Show – before 9/6/14: 941-744-5465/800-237-8924
During Show – 914-669-5610 ext 201
Stable office – 941-744-5465
Prize List Advertising – 941-744-5465
Vendors – Matt Morrissey 941-915-3457

Website – www.theamericangoldcup.com

Televised Broadcast:
The 2014 American Gold Cup Grand Prix will be broadcast on NBC Sports Sunday, September 21 at 4:00 p.m. EST.

Tickets:

Weekdays: Admission is free to the public.
Saturday and Sunday: Admission is $20 per person, $15 per child 4-12 years and seniors 65+, children 3 and under are free.

Gates open at:
Wednesday – Saturday: 8 a.m.
Sunday: 12 noon

Tickets are on sale now and are available online at www.theamericangoldcup.com and at the gate. (Online ticket sales will be available June 1 – Sept. 1.)

Charity Partners:

JustWorld International
http://www.justworldinternational.org/

ASPCA
http://aspca.org/

Sponsorship Opportunities:

Matt Morrissey
941.915.3457
matt.morrissey@stadiumjumping.com

Connie Sawyer
518.461.6288
sawyer.equestrianevents@gmail.com

Advertising Opportunities:

Mary Silcox 800-237-8924
mary.silcox@stadiumjumping.com

Ring dimensions and footing:
Grand Prix Field 350′x450′, footing bluegrass mix turf. Grand Prix Annex 200′x250′, Schooling 130′x170′. Jumper Annex 146′x307′, Schooling 155′x173′. Indoor 115′x195′, Schooling 74′x135′. Hunter 138′x243′, Schooling 108′x158′. Footing in all arenas is all-weather German-designed fiber and sand.

Hotels:
Official Hotel of the American Gold Cup
Danbury Crown Plaza
(877) 270 1393
Ridgefield, CT

West Lane Inn (203) 438-7323
Brewster, NY 5 – 10 min
Heidi’s Motel (845) 279-8011
Mt. Kisco, NY 5 – 10 min
Holiday Inn (914) 241-2600
Danbury, CT 10-20 min from grounds
Hilton Gardens (203) 205-2000
Comfort Inn (203) 205-0800
Danbury Plaza (203) 795-0600
Ethan Allen (203) 774-1776
Spring Hill Suites (203) 744-7333
Residence Inn (203) 797-1256

Management:
Stadium Jumping, Inc.
1301 Sixth Ave. West, Suite 406
Bradenton, FL 34205
Tel: (941) 744-5465 Fax: (941) 744-0874

Media Contact:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12012 South Shore Boulevard, Suite 105 Wellington, FL 33414
Tel: 561.753.3389 Fax: 561.753.3386
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
www.phelpsmediagroup.com

Darragh Kenny and Gatsby Go Two-for-Two at American Gold Cup CSI4*-W

Darragh Kenny and Gatsby are on a roll, claiming four consecutive victories together.

North Salem, NY – September 12, 2014 – For anyone looking to wager on Sunday’s $200,000 American Gold Cup CSI4*W Grand Prix, consider placing a bet on Darragh Kenny. The Irishman is on quite the hot streak at this year’s American Gold Cup; yesterday he earned a definitive victory in the $34,000 Don Little Memorial Welcome Stake aboard Allison Toffolon’s Gatsby, and today the same duo did it again, clinching the win in the $100,000 Hermès American Gold Cup Qualifier.

Rewind to a month ago and Kenny had yet to even show the 10-year-old Irish Sport Horse. Now a few short weeks later, the pair has racked up an impressive track record, winning all four of their last four attempts.

“He’s an amazing horse,” Kenny said. “He just keeps winning all the time. It’s unbelievable.”

With three wins with Kenny already under his belt, today’s 1.60m track, set on the beautiful grass field at Old Salem Farm, served as the next big test for Gatsby.

“This is the first time that I’ve ever jumped him this big and he jumped it so easily,” Kenny said. “I was really happy with him.”

Many other more experienced horses did not fare as well as Gatsby, as rails continued to roll out of cups throughout the challenging course, designed by Alan Wade and intended to separate the best of the best from the rest for qualification to compete in Sunday’s $200,000 American Gold Cup CSI*4W Grand Prix.

Watch an interview with Darragh Kenny following his win, including clips of his jump-off ride.

“Alan Wade is an Irish course designer, and he is to me one of the best course designers in the world,” Kenny said. “He’s incredible. He built a really super course today. It caused a lot of problems everywhere, not just in one place. I think he got a great outcome in the class.”

Of the 59 competitors competing in the first round, five would advance without fault to the jump-off, while 15 others would finish on just four faults.

Young rider Wilton Porter and his mount Diamonte Darco were the first to go clear in the opening round, but a thrown shoe in the schooling ring would move the talented pair down the return list for the jump-off.

Instead, it was Christine McCrea with Zerly, owned by Candy Tribble of Suffield, CT, who came back first to jump-off. The pair was clear all the way to the final fence, a large, orange Hermès oxer, but the rail hit the ground leaving them with four faults in a time of 48.120 seconds. Megan Nusz and Dynamo, owned by Amalaya Investments of Houston, TX, were next in the ring, and they were met with the same fate as a rail came down on the last oxer. The pair’s slightly quicker time of 47.610 seconds would move them just ahead of McCrea and Zerly for the eventual fourth place finish.

Kenny and Gatsby were the next to return, and they left nothing to chance going clear all the way through to the end in a quick time of 44.280 seconds.

“I knew that Brianne [Goutal] could be very fast, and Wilton [Porter], his horse pulled a shoe in the warm-up, so he had to go after me. So I knew I had to be quick. In the end it proved to be quick enough,” Kenny said.

With shoe back on, Porter and Diamonte Darco returned after Kenny to go clear in a time of 51.850 seconds, a time that would be good enough for the third place finish in the end.

Brianne Goutal and Nice De Prissey finished second in the $100,000 Hermes American Gold Cup Grand Prix Qualifier
Brianne Goutal and Nice De Prissey finished second in the $100,000 Hermes American Gold Cup Grand Prix Qualifier

Edging out Porter for the second place spot were last year’s $200,000 American Invitational CSI4*-W Grand Prix winners, Brianne Goutal and Nice de Prissey. The pair ended on a clear round in a time of 51.460 seconds. For the second day in a row, Kenny won the class by a significant margin of more than five seconds.

Catherine Tyree First and Second in $3,000 Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Power and Speed

Not unlike Kenny, Catherine Tyree is having her own bit of a win streak, but for Tyree the streak today came within just one class. The Northwestern University sophomore took both of the top two spots in the morning’s $3,000 Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Power and Speed class. She claimed the victory aboard her own Wetter and finished in a close second with Free Style Van Polderhof.

“I’m so happy. Both horses were so great. I couldn’t have asked them to do anything better,” Tyree said. “They both really fought today and were so on their game.”

Tyree continued, “Wetter’s pretty unconventional, but I’ve had him for over two years now, so I’ve adapted my ride to him. I know him like the back of my hand. We’ve done a lot together. I’m really happy that he’s finally in the spotlight and that he got his win because he’s been so great for me ever since I got him. Then Freestyle: She’s 9 years old, but she’s a little bit on the greener side so we just started going fast and kind of starting to challenge her a little bit. She’s been so great so I’m really thrilled with how she was today.”

Tyree heads back to Northwestern next week, but she is always happy to be able to make the trip to the American Gold Cup.

“This is, I think, one of the nicest shows that we have in America. Everything is done so well for the riders and the horses,” Tyree said. “The stalls are great. The rings are phenomenal. With Alan Wade here you get really, really nice courses on the field. It’s a top show, like something in Europe.”

The competition for juniors, amateurs and professionals alike continues at Old Salem Farm tomorrow beginning at 9 a.m. Highlights of the day will include the $34,000 Fidelity Investments Speed Derby and the Region 2 ASPCA/NHSAA Maclay Regional Championships.

On Sunday, the horse show comes to an exciting conclusion with the $200,000 American Gold Cup CSI4*W Grand Prix which kicks off at 2 p.m. EST.

All competition will be webcast live throughout the week at www.theamericangoldcup.com, and more information can be found by visiting the website or www.stadiumjumping.com.

45th Annual American Gold Cup Fast Facts

What:
The $200,000 American Gold Cup, an FEI World Cup Qualifying Competition CSI4*-W

When:
September 10-14, 2014

Where:
Old Salem Farm, 190 June Road, North Salem, NY

Hours:
8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Wednesday to Saturday with the ASPCA Regional Championships on Saturday afternoon.

Facility: Old Salem Farm is New York State’s Westchester County’s premier equestrian facility, offering 26 annual competitions, boarding, top-level training and sales. It offers state-of-the-art facilities surrounded by 120 gorgeous acres.

Stabling:
Stalls are 10 x 10 and housed under canvas. The FEI stalls are 10 x 12 and stabling area will be secured by fencing with 24/7 security. FEI horses will be scheduled to school separately from non-FEI horses. Schedules will be posted and riders will be given notification of times during the horse inspection.

Parking:
Available on the grounds

Directions:
From Interstate 84 or Interstate 287: Take interstate 684 to exit 8 (Hardscrabble Road), turn right. Old Salem Farm is on the right.

Information:
Before Show – before 9/6/14: 941-744-5465/800-237-8924
During Show – 914-669-5610 ext 201
Stable office – 941-744-5465
Prize List Advertising – 941-744-5465
Vendors – Matt Morrissey 941-915-3457

Website – www.theamericangoldcup.com

Televised Broadcast:
The 2014 American Gold Cup Grand Prix will be broadcast on NBC Sports Sunday, September 21 at 4:00 p.m. EST.

Tickets:

Weekdays: Admission is free to the public.
Saturday and Sunday: Admission is $20 per person, $15 per child 4-12 years and seniors 65+, children 3 and under are free.

Gates open at:
Wednesday – Saturday: 8 a.m.
Sunday: 12 noon

Tickets are on sale now and are available online at www.theamericangoldcup.com and at the gate. (Online ticket sales will be available June 1 – Sept. 1.)

Charity Partners:

JustWorld International
http://www.justworldinternational.org/

ASPCA
http://aspca.org/

Sponsorship Opportunities:

Matt Morrissey
941.915.3457
matt.morrissey@stadiumjumping.com

Connie Sawyer
518.461.6288
sawyer.equestrianevents@gmail.com

Advertising Opportunities:

Mary Silcox 800-237-8924
mary.silcox@stadiumjumping.com

Ring dimensions and footing:
Grand Prix Field 350′x450′, footing bluegrass mix turf. Grand Prix Annex 200′x250′, Schooling 130′x170′. Jumper Annex 146′x307′, Schooling 155′x173′. Indoor 115′x195′, Schooling 74′x135′. Hunter 138′x243′, Schooling 108′x158′. Footing in all arenas is all- weather German-designed fiber and sand.

Hotels:
Official Hotel of the American Gold Cup
Danbury Crown Plaza
(877) 270 1393
Ridgefield, CT

West Lane Inn (203) 438-7323
Brewster, NY 5 – 10 min
Heidi’s Motel (845) 279-8011
Mt. Kisco, NY 5 – 10 min
Holiday Inn (914) 241-2600
Danbury, CT 10-20 min from grounds
Hilton Gardens (203) 205-2000
Comfort Inn (203) 205-0800
Danbury Plaza (203) 795-0600
Ethan Allen (203) 774-1776
Spring Hill Suites (203) 744-7333
Residence Inn (203) 797-1256

Management:
Stadium Jumping, Inc.
1301 Sixth Ave. West, Suite 406
Bradenton, FL 34205
Tel: (941) 744-5465 Fax: (941) 744-0874

Media Contact:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12012 South Shore Boulevard, Suite 105 Wellington, FL 33414
Tel: 561.753.3389 Fax: 561.753.3386
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
www.phelpsmediagroup.com

Darragh Kenny Is Great with Gatsby at American Gold Cup CSI4*-W

Darragh Kenny and Gatsby.

North Salem, NY – September 11, 2014 – When Darragh Kenny and Gatsby entered the ring as one of the last to go in today’s $34,000 Don Little Memorial Welcome Stake, the time to beat sat at 76.040 seconds. That time, held by Jessica Springsteen and Vindicat W, had been set nearly 50 rounds before and looked like it would remain untouchable.

But by the time Kenny and Gatsby trotted off the grass grand prix field at Old Salem Farm, they had blown Springsteen’s time out of the water by nearly 5.5 seconds and clinched the biggest victory of the day at the American Gold Cup CSI4*-W.

“He’s unbelievable,” Kenny said of Gatsby. “He’s a very fast horse, and he’s very easy to go quick on. He’s so careful, and he just wants to win. He’s truly a fantastic horse.”

Alan Wade set the course for today’s highlight class, which was run according to FEI Art. 238.2.1 with riders pinned according to penalties and time with no jump-off.

Of the 71 starters, 10 produced clear rounds, with Candice King and Kismet 50 paving the way as the early clear pathfinder in a time of 81.50 seconds.

King and Kismet 50’s time was toppled by the next to go clear, as Springsteen, of Colts Neck, NJ, and Vindicat W shaved more than 5 seconds off to take over the lead. Seven of the remaining clears turned in great efforts but all finished more than a second outside of Springsteen’s time. Paul O’Shea and Skara Glenn’s Sienna would come the closest and end up being the eventual third place finishers with a time of 77.840 seconds, while fourth place would go to Schuyler Riley and Dobra de Porceyo who had a time of 78.580 seconds.

Only Kenny and Gatsby made beating the time look easy as the cleared the final vertical with plenty of room and seconds to spare.

The large margin of victory over the 70 other horses competing was an impressive feat in itself, but perhaps equally impressive is the fact that the win today marks Kenny and Gatsby’s third victory in a row.

Owned by Allison Toffolon of Bronxville, NY, Gatsby came to Kenny for the ride when Toffolon went off to school this fall at Southern Methodist University. Since then, Kenny has shown the 10-year-old Irish Sport Horse four times, finishing second the first time out and first in all three of their last efforts, including the win in the $15,000 Merill Lynch Speed Derby and the $10,000 Open Jumpers, both at the Hampton Classic.

“He’s been absolutely incredible. I’m lucky to get the chance to ride him,” Kenny said.

Toffolon will return to the saddle on Gatsby during the Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, FL, but in the meantime, there is no place that Kenny would rather have the ride on the stallion than at the American Gold Cup.

“I love this horse show. It’s a great horse show with a great atmosphere,” Kenny said. “They run it really well. The footing is super, and it’s a really enjoyable horse show to be at.”

Kenny continued, “If I had to pick one thing? It’s the atmosphere. It feels like a top show in Europe.”

Prior to Kenny’s victory, the juniors and amateurs took their turn on the grass field for the $3,000 High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers, and it was Michael Hughes’ turn to ride away with a win. He took the top call with Luxina while second place went to Catherine Tyree and her own Don’t Go, with Richard Neal and his mount Quadam rounding out the top three.

Jessica Springsteen and Vindicat W
Jessica Springsteen and Vindicat W

The 2014 edition of the American Gold Cup CSI4*-W will continue tomorrow with the $100,000 Hermès American Gold Cup Qualifier beginning at 1:30 p.m. Saturday’s highlight events will include the $34,000 Fidelity Investments Speed Derby and the Region 2 ASPCA/NHSAA Maclay Regional Championships. The five day horse show culminates on Sunday with the $200,000 American Gold Cup CSI4*W Grand Prix which kicks off at 2 p.m. EST.

All competition will be webcast live throughout the week at www.theamericangoldcup.com, and more information can be found by visiting the website or www.stadiumjumping.com.

45th Annual American Gold Cup Fast Facts

What:
The $200,000 American Gold Cup, an FEI World Cup Qualifying Competition CSI4*-W

When:
September 10-14, 2014

Where:
Old Salem Farm, 190 June Road, North Salem, NY

Hours:
8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Wednesday to Saturday with the ASPCA Regional Championships on Saturday afternoon.

Facility: Old Salem Farm is New York State’s Westchester County’s premier equestrian facility, offering 26 annual competitions, boarding, top-level training and sales. It offers state-of-the-art facilities surrounded by 120 gorgeous acres.

Stabling:
Stalls are 10 x 10 and housed under canvas. The FEI stalls are 10 x 12 and stabling area will be secured by fencing with 24/7 security. FEI horses will be scheduled to school separately from non-FEI horses. Schedules will be posted and riders will be given notification of times during the horse inspection.

Parking:
Available on the grounds

Directions:
From Interstate 84 or Interstate 287: Take interstate 684 to exit 8 (Hardscrabble Road), turn right. Old Salem Farm is on the right.

Information:
Before Show – before 9/6/14: 941-744-5465/800-237-8924
During Show – 914-669-5610 ext 201
Stable office – 941-744-5465
Prize List Advertising – 941-744-5465
Vendors – Matt Morrissey 941-915-3457

Website – www.theamericangoldcup.com

Televised Broadcast:
The 2014 American Gold Cup Grand Prix will be broadcast on NBC Sports Sunday, September 21 at 4:00 p.m. EST.

Tickets:

Weekdays: Admission is free to the public.
Saturday and Sunday: Admission is $20 per person, $15 per child 4-12 years and seniors 65+, children 3 and under are free.

Gates open at:
Wednesday – Saturday: 8 a.m.
Sunday: 12 noon

Tickets are on sale now and are available online at www.theamericangoldcup.com and at the gate. (Online ticket sales will be available June 1 – Sept. 1.)

Charity Partners:

JustWorld International
http://www.justworldinternational.org/

ASPCA
http://aspca.org/

Sponsorship Opportunities:

Matt Morrissey
941.915.3457
matt.morrissey@stadiumjumping.com

Connie Sawyer
518.461.6288
sawyer.equestrianevents@gmail.com

Advertising Opportunities:

Mary Silcox 800-237-8924
mary.silcox@stadiumjumping.com

Ring dimensions and footing:
Grand Prix Field 350′x450′, footing bluegrass mix turf. Grand Prix Annex 200′x250′, Schooling 130′x170′. Jumper Annex 146′x307′, Schooling 155′x173′. Indoor 115′x195′, Schooling 74′x135′. Hunter 138′x243′, Schooling 108′x158′. Footing in all arenas is all- weather German-designed fiber and sand.

Hotels:
Official Hotel of the American Gold Cup
Danbury Crown Plaza
(877) 270 1393
Ridgefield, CT

West Lane Inn (203) 438-7323
Brewster, NY 5 – 10 min
Heidi’s Motel (845) 279-8011
Mt. Kisco, NY 5 – 10 min
Holiday Inn (914) 241-2600
Danbury, CT 10-20 min from grounds
Hilton Gardens (203) 205-2000
Comfort Inn (203) 205-0800
Danbury Plaza (203) 795-0600
Ethan Allen (203) 774-1776
Spring Hill Suites (203) 744-7333
Residence Inn (203) 797-1256

Management:
Stadium Jumping, Inc.
1301 Sixth Ave. West, Suite 406
Bradenton, FL 34205
Tel: (941) 744-5465 Fax: (941) 744-0874

Media Contact:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12012 South Shore Boulevard, Suite 105 Wellington, FL 33414
Tel: 561.753.3389 Fax: 561.753.3386
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
www.phelpsmediagroup.com

Bluman and Apardi Win G&C Farm Cup at Spruce Meadows ‘Pan American’

Daniel Bluman and Apardi. Photos © Spruce Meadows Media Services.

Darragh Kenny and Fantasy Win $8,000 Friends of the Meadows Cup 1.45m

Calgary, AB, Canada – July 10, 2014 – Spruce Meadows kicked off its final week of summer competition with the ‘Pan American’ Tournament CSI 5* on Thursday and a win for Colombia’s Daniel Bluman and Apardi in the day’s feature $33,500 G&C Farm Cup 1.50m. Ireland’s Darragh Kenny also continued his hot streak this summer by winning the first international competition of the day riding Fantasy in the $8,000 Friends of the Meadows Cup 1.45m. The ‘Pan American’ Tournament runs July 10-13, featuring the $400,000 Pan American Cup presented by Rolex on Sunday, July 13.

Uliano Vezzani of Italy set the track for 54 starters in Thursday’s G&C Farm Cup, held in the Meadows on the Green with 15 qualifying for the jump-off. Three chose not to jump the short course, leaving 12 to advance with five double clear rounds.

Mexico’s Antonio Chedraui was the first rider to clear the jump-off track with La Bamba and set the pace in 41.169 seconds to eventually take third place honors. Four rounds later, Pablo Barrios (VEN) and ZL Group, Inc.’s Zara Leandra took the lead in 38.691 seconds, but they were soon pushed back to second place. Last to go, Daniel Bluman and Ricardo and Alberto Simhon’s Apardi sped through the track in 37.953 seconds to take the win.

Kent Farrington (USA) and Robin Parsky’s Gazelle finished fourth in 41.352 seconds. Nicolas Pizarro (MEX) and Polasko placed fifth with a time of 43.060 seconds.

Bluman started riding Apardi, a nine-year-old KWPN stallion (Corland x Kannan), when the horse was seven years old. The pair won the Eight-Year-Old Young Jumper Final during the FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, FL, in 2013. Apardi has since stepped up to the next level and become a competitive horse in Bluman’s string.

“From the moment I got him from Colombia, he has always looked like a careful horse,” Bluman stated. “He was a little bit difficult. He has a lot of energy and he gets a little bit anxious, but he always tries to be careful no matter what. It has been a long way to get the dressage going well and get his body to feel good and improve the rideability. I have to say that already one year ago when he first came to Spruce he already started showing special things. Right before coming to Spruce last year he won the final in Wellington, and then here at Spruce he jumped very well.”

“Through the year as an eight-year-old he jumped in Europe and he was like every young horse, a little up and down, but he has been very good here this year,” Bluman said. “When he arrived, unfortunately he got a little bit hurt on the plane coming from Europe, so I couldn’t show him the first two weeks, but after that he started and he has been jumping really good. The first week he was clear the first day and then last week he was second in the 1.50m on Sunday, so he has been knocking on the door a little bit. Right now he is at the point where he is ready to start winning classes.”

Going in last for the jump-off, Bluman had the opportunity to watch some of the early riders, including the leading round of Pablo Barrios.

“I knew Pablo was leading. Pablo is a great friend of mine and a former trainer and I really wanted to beat him,” Bluman declared. “We’re good buddies, but of course every time you have a little chance or a little opening to beat your trainer, it’s nice. It gives you a good feeling. Of course it is very healthy competition between us. It turned out well. This is the first win of the season for me and the first class that I have won here in two years, so I am very happy. I have been getting too many second places.”

In the jump-off, Bluman knew exactly where Barrios had left the door open, and he went full out to the final fence.

“I got Pablo to the last jump definitely,” Bluman affirmed. “I know, because I spoke to Pablo when he came out of the course. He told me that he had been neat, but he knew that he had left an opening for the last jump. I did for sure at least one stride less in the last line. I know I have a super careful horse that at the end I can run as hard as I want, and the moment I let him read the jump, he is going to clear it. When I landed, without looking at the tower, I felt confident that I had him.”

Apardi will jump Saturday’s $83,000 Investors Group Cup 1.50m to conclude his summer at Spruce Meadows. He will then fly back to Europe to jump as second horse in Valkenswaard and will step up to be Bluman’s first horse in the grand prix in Dublin. “We have big hopes for him,” Bluman concluded.

Kenny Continues Hot Streak

Anthony D’Ambrosio (USA) is the course designer in the All Canada Ring this week, which saw a win for Darragh Kenny of Ireland in the $8,000 Friends of the Meadows Cup 1.45m to kick off the final week of summer competition at Spruce Meadows. Kenny and the nine-year-old Hanoverian mare, Fantasy (For Pleasure x Acorado), completed the fastest of 13 clear rounds out of 45 total competitors over D’Ambrosio’s speed track. Their winning time of 70.819 seconds just edged out Hector Florentino (DOM) and Anemone’s Vicky, owned by Stransky’s Mission Farms. They held the lead through most of the competition with a time of 71.066 seconds, but had to settle for second. Lisa Carlsen (CAN) and Alycia Hayes’ World’s Judgment finished third in 71.965 seconds.

Darragh Kenny and Fantasy
Darragh Kenny and Fantasy

Fantasy is shown under the ownership of Oakland Ventures LLC. She was purchased by Darragh Kenny, in partnership with trainer Don Stewart, in March. Kenny saw the mare compete with rider Kyle Timm in Ocala, FL, and bought her soon after.

“She was only jumping 1.35m and had done one 1.40m,” Kenny explained. “I had seen the mare the September before and really liked her. She is great quality, lots of scope, super blood, and really careful. I think she is going to be very nice, I am just going to take my time with her a little bit.”

“She is a really, really interesting mare,” Kenny said. “She has been placed a couple of times in the 1.45m classes. She did the two derbies here and she was very good in those. She is still quite green in her riding, but she is super brave, and I think she has a lot of ability. I think she can do really good things.”

Fantasy’s confidence and ability led Kenny to jump her in the derby competitions for experience this summer, and she fared well with the demanding course both times.

“She is extremely brave. She does all that stuff very well,” Kenny noted. “I wanted to do that with her because it is good for her to get that kind of experience going around the ring. It is bigger jumps without putting her in a class that is too big for her. You have lots more space in the derby and lots more room to set up the jumps, so you don’t make that many mistakes at the jumps. I think it is easier for her to figure out how to jump bigger jumps that way.”

Fantasy’s experience came into play in her win Thursday morning where Kenny kept a tidy track to shave off the time.

“I didn’t actually go that fast; I just stayed very tight,” he explained. “She turns really well and you can turn back to any jump and she has the jump to jump it easy, so I just stayed very tight. There was an option to do the grob or do a double that was on the left side, which was actually a shorter line to do the double, and I just did that with her because I know she jumps the grob no problem.”

The ‘Pan American’ Tournament at Spruce Meadows will continue on Friday with the $33,500 Ashcor Technologies Cup 1.50m in the Meadows on the Green. For more information and full results, please visit www.sprucemeadows.com.

Lauren Fisher for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.

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Lamaze and Fine Lady 5 Top LaFarge Cup at Spruce Meadows

Eric Lamaze and Fine Lady 5. Photos © Spruce Meadows Media Services.

Darragh Kenny and Wilton Porter Win 1.45m Jump-Offs

Calgary, AB, Canada – July 4, 2014 – The Spruce Meadows ‘North American’ Tournament continued with wins for two of this summer’s top riders as well as an exciting first for a young up-and-comer in the International Ring on Friday. Eric Lamaze (CAN) and Fine Lady 5 topped the $50,000 LaFarge Cup 1.50m, Darragh Kenny (IRL) and Chin Quidam VDL won the $33,500 Pepsi Challenge 1.45m, and Wilton Porter (USA) and Diamonte Darco were victorious in the $33,500 Friends of the Meadows Jumper 1.45m.

Watch highlights from Friday’s competition!

The ‘North American’ Tournament continues through July 6, featuring the $210,000 ATCO Power Queen Elizabeth II Cup on Saturday and the $210,000 Cenovus Energy Classic 1.50m Derby on Sunday.

Leopoldo Palacios of Venezuela is the course designer in the International Ring for the week and set some challenging tracks on Friday. In the $50,000 LaFarge Cup, Palacios saw 25 entries with five clear rounds to advance to the jump-off. Eric Lamaze and Artisan Farms LLC’s Fine Lady 5 got the win with the only double clear round in 53.16 seconds. Richie Moloney (IRL) and Equinimity LLC’s Freestyle de Muze were clear over the jumps and finished with one time fault in 57.68 seconds. McLain Ward (USA) and his own and Susan Heller’s d’Ulien van de Smeets had the fastest jump-off time of 46.63 seconds, but incurred four faults to finish third.

Lamaze and Fine Lady 5, the 11-year-old Hanoverian mare by Forsyth x Hauptstutbuch, are already on their third international victory this summer in a brand new partnership that solidified quickly.

“I didn’t know her very much before I came here, so I really got to know her on this summer tour,” Lamaze stated. “What I found out about her is that she is absolutely 100% reliable. She really wants to stay off the fences. She gets a little excited and moves right to left very quickly sometimes, so it took me a little bit to adjust to her, but she’s a total class horse for the 1.50m division. Who knows what else is in the future for her, but at this height I feel like I’m on the very best horse I can have for this.”

Fine Lady came to Artisan Farms when Lamaze needed a horse to fill the 1.50m speed classes in his string of top mounts, and the purchase has proved to be an excellent investment. Although they have only done a few jump-off rounds together, Lamaze knew he could trust his horse completely.

“It was wide open, and she’s really careful,” he stated. “The double was the trick to jump after the long gallop from one to two. I knew if McLain was to be clear, I was going to have a harder night. He had an unfortunate four faults, so things became a little bit easier. With one time fault to beat, I felt pretty good about things, but you never know about things in this sport. You could have the first jump down, the last fence, a light rub and it comes down. It’s not because all you have to do is go clear that it works every single time. I’m very happy with the result. I felt that I was on the right horse to accomplish this mission.”

“The great thing about this mare is that she is really fast, and she goes fast, but you can always push,” Lamaze added. “That’s why she is so good. Great horses, it doesn’t matter how fast you get to the fence, if they’re asking for leg when you get there, they are very competitive horses. In the jump-off tonight, I didn’t really have to hold her back. She always asks for more leg. I just sort of maintained a rhythm that I thought would be under the time allowed, and that’s all I had to do.”

After another great win, Lamaze looks forward to jumping Fine Lady 5 in Saturday’s $85,000 TD Cup 1.50m. He will also compete in the $210,000 ATCO Power Queen Elizabeth II Cup 1.60m with Powerplay.

Darragh Kenny and Chin Quidam VDL
Darragh Kenny and Chin Quidam VDL

Kenny Can’t Be Beat

Ireland’s Darragh Kenny continued an incredible summer at Spruce Meadows with another win on Friday afternoon, this time taking the $33,500 Pepsi Challenge 1.45m aboard Hyperion Stud LLC’s Chin Quidam VDL, an eight-year-old KWPN stallion by Chin Chin x Quidam de Revel. Including Friday’s win, Kenny has now had eight individual FEI victories over the course of four weeks at Spruce Meadows as well as a team Nations Cup win for Ireland.

In Friday’s Pepsi Challenge, course designer Leopoldo Palacios set the track for 42 entries and saw 10 advance to the jump-off with four double clear rounds. Eric Lamaze went first over the short course with Artisan Farms LLC’s Check Picobello Z in 39.78 seconds, but Kenny stole the lead with Chin Quidam VDL in 35.63 seconds a few rounds later. Shane Sweetnam (IRL) then moved into second with Spy Coast Farm LLC’s Mimosa in 36.97 seconds. Last to go, Leslie Howard (USA) went for the clear round in 40.87 seconds with Moormann, Rolf u. Paul Schockemohle’s Balboa 6 to finish fourth. Frances Land (USA) had the time in hand with Vieanne in 35.21 seconds, but had four faults at the final fence to place fifth.

“I didn’t know what exactly I was doing when I went in the ring,” Kenny admitted after his round. “He’s very quick, and he’s very careful. I didn’t know if he was going to spook on the inside turn from one to two in the jump-off, but he didn’t at all. Everybody had said to me that it was going to be very difficult to do six strides to the double (combination), but I knew that he had such a big stride that it was going to be easy for him. I just cut inside, did the six, and then I knew I was one stride ahead at that stage, so then I just kept going. I tried to do seven to the last, but I got caught wide, so I had to do eight (strides), but it turned out to be good enough.”

“I was very lucky that Frances Land hit the last jump because she could have done 11 strides to the last jump and still beaten me,” Kenny added with a laugh.

Chin Quidam VDL is a breeding stallion for Hyperion Stud in Virginia. Kenny started riding the horse in Florida over the winter and has been stepping him up this summer.

“He’s a really, really nice horse, and he only started doing the 1.45m here at Spruce,” Kenny noted. “He has really come a long way. He won a national 1.45m here also and was second in another. Today was only his second time in the big ring, and he really performed well. He is quite competitive.”

In addition to his own success throughout the summer series, Kenny has coached many of his students to top ribbons. One student, Taylor Alexander, finished ninth with her horse G&C Flash in the Pepsi Challenge. Kenny explained that it is a big job to make sure all of his horses and riders are prepared in the same classes throughout the day, but showing together also keeps him on top of his game.

“For me, I really enjoy working with students,” he acknowledged. “I really enjoy helping people get to their goals in their careers. I know from my own experience, I ask nearly all the top riders questions all the time, so I think it’s good for my students that they also have someone that’s riding in the ring and can get on the horse and feel what they feel, and have an idea of what’s going on.”

“It’s a huge balance when you’re walking the course,” Kenny pointed out. “You have to teach every person differently because of how they ride and the horse that they are on. I really try in my training to individualize the horses. I don’t try to use the same idea for every horse. I see what each horse needs to improve on and do that, whether it’s my own horses or my clients’ horses.”

Wilton Porter and Diamonte Darco
Wilton Porter and Diamonte Darco

Porter Wins Big with Diamonte Darco

Twenty-year-old Wilton Porter (USA) got his first International win at Spruce Meadows Friday morning riding Sleepy P Ranch LLC’s Diamonte Darco in the $33,500 Friends of the Meadows 1.45m. Porter got the nine-year-old mare, a Great Britain Sport Horse by Unbelievable Darco, this winter. The pair first showed in Florida for a few months and then traveled to Europe in May before starting up in Calgary last week. Jumping in the world-renowned International Ring, they made their first win together a big one.

Forty-three entries showed in the first competition of the day with nine clear rounds to advance to the jump-off. Porter and Diamonte Darco had the advantage of being last to go over the short course. When no one else was able to finish without fault, they only had the round of two time faults in 52.37 seconds from Christine McCrea and Candy Tribble’s Win For Life to beat. Porter explained that he thought he was almost not fast enough, but he galloped down to the final fence and jumped clear in 50.33 seconds to take top honors.

“It was a good jump-off to go last in,” the rider smiled. “I was right at the in-gate when Chris went, and I watched her round. It wasn’t super slow, but it wasn’t all out. I knew that I didn’t need to race and have a rail down because I was trying to go too fast. Actually, once I started doing the course and I was coming around to the second to last jump, I thought, ‘I’m pretty slow. I might be slower than her.’ So I had to kind of race to the last (jump), but it was a wall. Horses tend to back themselves off of that, so it worked out well.”

“It’s really exciting,” Porter said of his momentous win. “I have been coming to Spruce for four years and competing in the International Ring for three years. I have had some good placings in here, but I had not gotten that victory yet, so it is really special to have all of the hard work pay off.”

Porter was also excited to get the win with a relatively new horse in Diamonte Darco. He had a great round in the competition with his veteran partner Paloubet as well, but had one time fault to finish just out of the ribbons.

Porter explained that the mare has been gradually stepping up to bigger classes, and that although she is only nine years old and a little green at this level of competition, she handled it very well.

“She’s pretty fiery; a fiery personality, and she’s definitely very sensitive,” he said of the ride. “I have adjusted to that. She is very different from my other horse, Paloubet, who is really strong and powerful. I am just sort of trying to hold on to him, whereas with her, it is more of a finesse to it. She’s very careful. The distance at the jump is very important for her.”

With a fantastic win under his belt, Porter has big plans for the rest of the summer. Diamonte Darco will travel to Kentucky to be his mount at the Adequan FEI North American Junior/Young Rider Championships while Paloubet will fly over to Europe to give Porter the ride in his first senior Nations Cup team on the United States Under 25 tour in Bratislava, Slovakia.

The ‘North American’ Tournament continues on Saturday with the $85,000 TD Cup 1.50m and the $210,000 ATCO Power Queen Elizabeth II Cup 1.60m. For more information and full results, please visit www.sprucemeadows.com.

Lauren Fisher for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.

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Darragh Kenny and Alpha VDL Win McDaniel & Assoc. Cup at Spruce Meadows

Darragh Kenny of IRL riding Alpha VDL. Photos © Spruce Meadows Media Services.

Spooner Makes It Three in a Row

Calgary, AB, Canada – June 28, 2014 – The ‘Canada One’ Tournament at Spruce Meadows continued on Saturday featuring the $33,500 McDaniel & Associates Cup 1.55m with a win for Ireland’s Darragh Kenny and Alpha VDL. The small margin of six one-thousandths of a second separated Kenny from second place finisher Kirsten Coe (USA) aboard Czardas 30.

The $8,000 Francis Family Cup 1.45m was also held in the Chinook Ring in the morning with another win for USA’s Richard Spooner, giving the rider three major wins with three different horses this week. The ‘Canada One’ Tournament concludes on Sunday, June 29, with the $125,000 Imperial Challenge 1.55m.

Cristina Larangeiro of Portugal was the course designer for the McDaniel & Associates Cup, which saw 17 first round entries, and seven advancing to the jump-off in the Meadows on the Green. Darragh Kenny and Eva Castegren’s Alpha VDL jumped the first clear round over the short course in 39.661 seconds for the win. Last to go, Kirsten Coe and Ilan Ferder’s Czardas 30 came incredibly close to taking over the lead, but finished just shy in 39.667 seconds. Ben Asselin (CAN) and Linda Southern-Heathcott’s Doremi completed the only other double clear round in 46.29 seconds to finish third.

Alpha VDL, a nine-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding by Corland x Emilion, has had great success with Kenny in the irons this year and continued his progression by jumping to victory over his first 1.55m track on Saturday. Kenny knew that his horse had the foot speed to win and went for a fast, clear round after the first three riders had rails.

“He is naturally a quick enough horse, and he has won some good classes already,” Kenny noted. “I knew there were places I could be quick. I left out a stride in one line. I did six where most people did seven. I wanted to just have a good round and see where I ended up with that.”

Commenting on Alpha VDL’s rise to the top, Kenny smiled, “His progression has been incredible. The horse has gone from jumping 1.40m classes at the start of Florida to winning grand prixs. He won a grand prix in Ocala, he won a grand prix in Saugerties, and now he won this 1.55m here. This is the biggest class he has ever had to jump, and he coped extremely well. It was great. His owner is here this week, so she got to see him, and it all worked out pretty well.”

Kenny explained that the course was good for Alpha VDL’s first track at that level, noting, “Although it was big, it was a little bit spread out. That was good for him because it gave him time between the jumps. He is a very good horse. He is only nine years old, and he has just been getting better and better. Every time we step him up he just seems to do really well.”

“He is quite conventional to ride,” Kenny added. “He is very careful, and he has a good style. Whatever way I ride him, he seems to like it, so it works good for both of us. He tries really hard to leave the jumps up and that is very important in this sport.”

Second place finisher Czardas 30 is also stepping up his game this summer, and rider Kirsten Coe was very happy with his finish.

“It felt really good,” Coe stated. “That horse has really been knocking on the door. He has been coming along really nicely and jumping a lot of clear rounds. He felt very confident tonight, and I took a chance. He has been progressively moving through the divisions since we have been here. We are just building him up, but we really think a lot of him.”

Coe took over the reins on Czardas 30 this winter after the 11-year-old Hanoverian stallion (Contendro x Grannus) showed briefly with McLain Ward. She explained that it has been a great match ever since, and her mount really stepped up in Saturday’s final round.

“The jump-off was quite fast. There was plenty of room to gallop,” Coe noted. “I didn’t see Darragh go, but obviously it was very close. It was nice to have a top finish.”

Spooner Scores a Hat Trick

Competition kicked off in the Chinook Ring Friday morning with the $8,000 Francis Family Cup 1.45m where Richard Spooner (USA) got his third win in a row this week. Held in a faults converted format, the competition saw 30 entries jumping a course set by Manuel Esparza of Mexico. About halfway through the order, Spooner and Tuxedo cleared the course in a time of 66.44 seconds that would hold on for the win. The 13-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Gentleman x Hamilcar) is another brand new mount for Spooner riding for Legacy Stables LLC.

Darragh Kenny (IRL) guided Hyperion Stud LLC’s Chin Quidam VDL to second place honors in a time of 68.71 seconds. Frances Land (USA) and Vieanne placed third in 69.04 seconds. Kenny also took the fourth place prize in 69.48 seconds with Oakland Ventures LLC’s Fantasy.

Richard Spooner of USA riding Tuxedo
Richard Spooner of USA riding Tuxedo

“I don’t know what I ate, I don’t know what I ran into, but something happened right and I just have to try to figure out what it was,” Spooner smiled, commenting on his three-day sweep. He also won Thursday’s $33,500 Cargill Cup 1.50m with Cristallo and topped Friday’s $33,500 Duncan Ross Cup 1.50m aboard Uraguay. Although winning with veteran mount Cristallo is nothing new for the rider, Legacy Stables’ Uraguay and Tuxedo are both brand new horses that he has quickly figured out.

“Tuxedo is a wonderful horse,” Spooner stated after his win. “He is a top, top speed horse. I just got the ride of course, so we are still going through a little bit of growing pains, but today we felt great.”

“I am just learning the things he likes and the things he doesn’t like. He lets me know, which is nice of him,” Spooner said. “I think once I figure out the things that he is fond of we should hopefully have some success because he is unbelievably fast and careful and powerful. He actually really gets into it. He is a fascinating horse because you can feel him almost take over and he gets it. He gets that the goal is not to knock anything down and go as fast as you can, and if you get a horse that gets it like that, then they will be getting a lot of top ribbons.”

Detailing his round with Tuxedo, Spooner explained, “It was quick. I wouldn’t describe it as hair on fire, going 100% for broke, but it was quick and tidy. The horse is quite catty and his brakes are great, so you are able to really hit the gas when you land and stay off the brakes for longer than you can on other horses. Then you can kind of tap the brakes just a stride or two in front of the jump, and he settles right back into position. That gives you about a two-tenths of a second advantage at a good five or six jumps out there, and those tenths add up over the length of the course.”

Tuxedo is finished showing this week after a great win and will rest up for next week’s ‘North American’ Tournament.

Competition at the ‘Canada One’ Tournament will conclude on Sunday with the $33,500 West Canadian Cup 1.50m in the morning followed by the highlight $125,000 Imperial Challenge 1.55m in the afternoon in the Meadows on the Green. For more information and full results, please visit www.sprucemeadows.com.

Lauren Fisher for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.

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Ireland Wins $125,000 Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup at Spruce Meadows

Richie Moloney and Slieveanorra. Photos © Spruce Meadows Media Services.

Victory in $40,000 AltaGas Cup 1.45m Goes to Darragh Kenny

Calgary, AB, Canada – June 13, 2014 – The $125,000 Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ presented by Scotiabank was held during the Spruce Meadows ‘Continental’ Tournament CSIO 5*, and seven teams from four countries competed for top honors. Team Ireland rode to victory with team members Shane Sweetnam/Eregast vant Kiezelhof, Richie Moloney/Slieveanorra, Darragh Kenny/Sans Souci Z, and Conor Swail/Lansdowne. Earlier in the day, Kenny had top honors with Postage Stamp Farm LLC’s Prof de la Roque over a large field of 91 competitors in the $40,000 AltaGas Cup 1.45m.

The ‘Continental’ CSIO 5* Tournament continues through the weekend with the $85,000 Talisman Energy Cup 1.50m on Saturday, June 14, and the $210,000 CP Grand Prix on Sunday, June 15.

The $125,000 Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ presented by Scotiabank was the final regional qualifier for North and Central America in the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ Series. While Ireland won the competition, it was Canada and the United States who qualified from the region for the final this October in Barcelona.

Ireland took the second win in a row at the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ at Spruce Meadows. Led by Chef d’Equipe Robert Splaine, the four riders put in solid performances in both rounds. Splaine remarked, “It’s an achievement. To win here is a fantastic honor. My job is easy; I had four guys who did their best in the ring. It’s a credit to them that they made a very difficult job look easy. A particular thanks to Scotiabank and to Spruce Meadows for putting on a great show again, (as well as) the owners of all the great horses, and the grooms who play a significant part.”

Swail and Moloney were a part of last year’s winning team as well, and they spoke to standing on the podium for the second year in a row. “The Americans were pressing us very hard, and we just kept pulling in clear rounds. It was a fantastic achievement for all of us,” Swail said. Moloney added, “It’s great to have an opportunity to compete in a Nations Cup, especially here at Spruce Meadows since it’s such a great facility. It’s always great to represent your country.”

In the first round, Kenny and Caroline Lloyd’s Sans Souci Z were the only totally clear trip for Ireland, despite losing a shoe before the fourth fence. “I was turning to number four, and I felt him slip a little bit. I knew the time allowed was still tight, so I had to be as quick as possible,” Kenny recalled. After getting the shoe put back on, they returned in the second round to have just one time fault.

Shane Sweetnam and Eregast vant Kiezelhof
Shane Sweetnam and Eregast vant Kiezelhof

Moloney and Sweetnam both had one time fault in round one and bettered their scores with clears in the second round. “When we walked the course, we definitely thought it was a challenge,” Sweetnam said. “(Course designer) Anthony (D’Ambrosio) did a great job. It was plenty big jumps out there. We were neck and neck with the Americans.”

After the first round, Ireland sat in first place with just two faults, while the United States “Stars” team had just four faults. Swail and Lansdowne did not have to return for the second round. The final score for Ireland after two rounds was three faults.

The “Stars” team added four faults in round two to finish on eight faults for second place. They were led by Charlie Jayne and Chill R Z, owned by Alex R. Jayne, who were the only double clear combination on the day with no jumping or time faults.

Jayne and Chill R Z went in fresh to the Nations Cup having not shown at Spruce Meadows this year before today. “He felt fantastic. He walked straight into the ring,” Jayne affirmed. “He jumped a great first round and even better the second round. I couldn’t be happier with him. I felt confident going early, knowing that he’s a solid horse and he’ll perform with any conditions.”

Jayne said he was “a little surprised” that he was the only double clear of the competition, but noted that time did play a factor in the class. “Riders took more chances than they would,” he said. “I rode it more like a speed round (in) the first round.”

With the qualifier at Spruce Meadows and this year’s new event in Coapexpan, Mexico, there are now three Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ qualifiers for North and Central America. Jayne said, “It’s great to have another Nations Cup in North America. It’s very important that we have this Nations Cup, and it’s great what Furusiyya and the FEI are doing.”

Splaine concluded, “This is top sport. I go to all of the Nations Cup shows. It was significantly tougher (here) than last year. They haven’t missed a beat at Spruce Meadows.”

Darragh Kenny Continues Winning Streak

Darragh Kenny and Prof de la Roque
Darragh Kenny and Prof de la Roque

There were 91 entries in the $40,000 AltaGas Cup 1.45m, making for a top jump-off of 11 horse and rider combinations. The early leader was Daniel Bluman (COL) on Believe, owned by Blue Star Investments. They set the time at 36.72 seconds, which held up for third place.

Four horses later, the time was dropped to 35.30 seconds by Eric Lamaze on Artisan Farms LLC’s Fine Lady 5, which looked good for the win but wasn’t quite enough when the last horse entered the ring.

Sitting in the final position in the jump-off, Kenny knew what he had to do for victory. “I knew Eric had to be very fast,” Kenny acknowledged. “He’s a very careful horse, and I just said ‘Ok, jump one, as tight as I can back to two, go to three, and then just relax to the double (combination), and then just go as fast as I could.”

The plan worked when Kenny and Prof de la Roque, an 11-year-old Selle Francais gelding by Kannan x Damiro, were efficient through the first five jumps on course and positively blistering through the final three jumps. They brought the winning time down to 34.42 seconds.

The victory and good ride for Prof de la Roque was a confidence builder for the horse, who slipped in a turn last week in the International Ring. “He came back this week, and he was a little bit worried about that. He was a little fresh, so he was a little bit tense the first day, and it didn’t go exactly to plan. Today he was amazing. He’s funny. Sometimes he’s so cocky and then sometimes, (he says) ‘Oh, you have to be there for me.’”

Kenny felt that the smaller Meadows on the Green ring suited Prof de la Roque. “The jumps come up a lot faster in here, and it’s very careful jumping in this ring. In the big (International) Ring, the jumps hold them off a little bit,” he noted. “In this ring, they don’t all. It’s a little bit more difficult in that, I find anyway. That’s why it suits him. My plan was always to try and do well in one of these classes this week.”

Kenny said that he doesn’t ride Prof de la Roque “all that much” when they’re not getting ready for the competition ring. “Delphine who works for us rides him a good bit. He’s kind of a high, energetic horse. She gets on really well with him and keeps him really relaxed. I ride him every so often,” he explained.

While he is still deciding Prof de la Roque’s schedule for the rest of the week, Kenny does know that he will lean on this horse more in the final three weeks of the Spruce Meadows Summer Series when some of his other horses travel to Europe. “He’s a great horse to have like that. I’m very lucky to have so many nice horses and so many people to own those great horses,” he said.

Competition on Saturday at the ‘Continental’ includes $8,000 Friends of the Meadows Cup 1.45m in the North American Ring and the $85,000 Talisman Energy Cup 1.50m in the Meadows on the Green. For more information and full results, please visit www.sprucemeadows.com.

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