Erynn Ballard and Nanini Van D’Abelendreef. ©Anne Gittins Photography.
Wellington, FL – Jan. 2, 2022 – It was a celebratory weekend for Erynn Ballard (CAN) during the ESP Holiday Finale at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center thanks to wins in two separate grand prix classes, which closed 2021 on a high note and began 2022 even better. In one of the first classes of the new year, Ballard and Nanini Van D’Abelendreef, co-owned by Ilan Ferder and Esperanza Imports LLC, galloped to the top of the leaderboard in the $50,000 Equiline Grand Prix as the fastest over designer Anthony D’Ambrosio’s (USA) courses. On New Year’s Eve, Ballard navigated Comedia De Talma, owned by Esperanza Imports LLC, to first prize in the $25,000 Palm Beach Equine Clinic Grand Prix.
Prior to the start of the class, Filip de Wandel (BEL) was awarded with a $1,000 check as the winner of the Assets Risk Management National Grand Prix Rider Bonus.
Additionally, two Martha Jolicoeur Leading Lady Grand Prix Rider Awards were presented. Ballard earned the distinction for the ESP Holiday Finale week, and Catherine Tyree (USA) was honored as the Martha Jolicoeur Overall Leading Lady Grand Prix Rider thanks to her series of showings that earned her enough points for the top of the leaderboard.
Twenty competitors vied for the lion’s share of the prize money in the $5,000 Laura King – The Power to Win 1.35m Jumper Stake on Saturday. Eleven pairs made it into the jump-off, where Tony Cadet (FRA) and Etonemoi Del Cabalero, owned by Shore Acres Farm LLC, led the pack with a double-clear time of 37.03 seconds to win the class.
Thursday featured the Bainbridge Companies 1.40m Open Stake, which saw nine pairs out of the field advance to the jump-off. Of those, seven finished the class without faults and only four seconds separated them in the standings. Leading the way, Thomas McDermott (NZL) and his own Alpha Activity earned first place in a fault-free time of 41.15 seconds.
On Sunday in the High Junior/Amateur Jumper Stake, presented by Noltrex®Vet, just two pairs advanced to the jump-off, and two more kept all the rails up but were kept out of contention by time faults. Though they incurred four faults, David Oberkircher (USA) and Southfields Farm LLC’s Vulkato were the quickest over the 1.40m fences with a time of 41.93 seconds to take the win.
Immediately following, the Gochman sisters of Mimi and Sophie dominated the $2,500 Medium Amateur/Junior Jumper Stake, presented by Palm Beach Equine Clinic, by claiming all three podium spots. Finishing the 1.30m course in the swiftest time, Mimi Gochman (USA) piloted Dolores BH, owned by Gochman Sport Horses LLC, to first place in a double-clear time of 38.29 seconds.
For more information and results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.