Tag Archives: Ky. Spring Horse Show

Samuel Parot and Quick Du Pottier Win 1.45m CSI-3* Welcome Speed at Kentucky Spring Horse Show

Samuel Parot on Quick Du Pottier.

Lexington, KY – May 10, 2017 – Chilean athlete Samuel Parot rode Quick De Pottier to a blue-ribbon finish in the $35,000 FEI Welcome Speed 1.45m to kick off the first week of the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows at the Kentucky Horse Park. Parot blazed through the timers in a time of 58.590 to beat 38 other competitors who joined him in the Rolex Arena. Bull Run’s Faustino, ridden by Kristen Vanderveen, was a close second to Parot, finishing the course in a speedy 59.180.

Parot, who is known internationally as a fast and fearless rider, proved yet again that he is a force to be reckoned with and has a string of very competitive horses. The Kentucky Spring Horse Show is the first show back for Parot, who had a successful winter season at the Winter Equestrian Festival which included winning the $86,000 Suncast 1.50m Grand Prix with Quick Du Pottier. The 13-year-old Selle Francais gelding (Hurlevent De Breka x Cuba) was the second mount for Parot in the opening speed class and they were in perfect sync over the 14-obstacle course, designed by Marina Azevedo.

The top five spots were rounded out by Aaron Vale on his horses, Quidam’s Good Luck and Carlo, followed by Andrew Welles on Boo Van Het Kastanjehof.

Samuel Parot, on the difference between his two rounds: “This horse is very fast. The other horse I went fast too but made a mistake in the last line. I tried to go in 6 but I decided to do 7 at the last minute. The second time I decided to do the 7 early and it worked out perfectly.”

On showing in Lexington: “I love showing in Kentucky. It is a nice city, nice place, with nice people – just that easy.”

Goguen and Stewart Come Out on Top in the High Performance Working Hunter

As the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows begins at the Kentucky Horse Park, Hunter competitors are eager to secure a division championship. Tim Goguen aboard Clever, a 7-year-old Warmblood gelding, claimed the blue ribbon during the first round of the High Performance Working Hunter class with a score of 84. The country’s top hunters took their turn in the beautiful Stonelea Ring over courses designed by Bobby Murphy. Kelley Farmer finished just two points behind Goguen to secure second place aboard True Enough, owned by Kent Farrington & Derby Lane, LLC. Meagan Murray-Tenuta and Becky Price’s Editorial picked up third place with a score of 81.

Scott Stewart and Catch Me

Scott Stewart and Catch Me, winners of the 2017 World Champion Hunter Spectacular at the Winter Equestrian Festival, dominated round two with a score of 87. Stewart has shown the 10-year-old Holsteiner gelding since he debuted in the First Year Green Hunters. Farmer and True Enough were again not far behind and scored 84 to secure second place. Meagan Murray-Tenuta and Editorial received an 81 to round out the top three once again.

Tim Goguen, on the round: “My strategy with Clever was to keep it smooth throughout the entire round. He was a little bit nervous, but he just needed to take a breath and jump around a couple times and then he was good. I was happy with him; he tried and it went well.”

On Lexington: “The restaurants in downtown Lexington are great. It’s a great town to hang out in for the summer and Kentucky Horse Park is a great facility; it’s fantastic.”

Website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Contact: Rebecca Walton
phone 561.753.3389 fax 561.753.3386
rjw@phelpsmediagroup.com
PhelpsMediaGroup.com

Kristen Vanderveen and Bull Run’s Eternal Win $50k Commonwealth Grand Prix at Kentucky Spring

Kristen Vanderveen and Bull Run’s Eternal.

Kelley Farmer Wins $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby

Lexington, Ky. – May 15, 2016 – The Kentucky Spring Horse Show wrapped up on Sunday in the Rolex Stadium with the featured national classes: the $25,000 Under 25 Grand Prix followed by the $50,000 Commonwealth Grand Prix. Kristen Vanderveen and Bull Run’s Eternal outpaced a 15-horse jump-off to grab the win in the $50,000 Commonwealth Grand Prix, presented by Audi of Lexington, which also counted towards valuable points earned in the Rolex/USEF Show Jumping Ranking List.

After consistently producing clear rounds all week, Vanderveen and Bull Run Jumpers’ Bull Run’s Eternal proved to be a force to be reckoned with after beating Aaron Vale and Carlo’s early jump-off lead of 42.001 seconds by three full seconds.

“It was so nice to finally get it all together,” said Vanderveen. “He’s actually the horse I’ve owned the longest. I’ve had him for three years so we really know each other quite well, and that really helped today in the jump-off because it was pretty fast.”

47 exhibitors navigated the Bernardo Costa Cabral-designed first round course, consisting of 13 obstacles, which challenged riders with a double and triple combination, a triple bar fence and multiple tight rollbacks in a time allowed of 81 seconds. The jump-off revealed a seven-fence serpentine with many large oxers that resulted in faults for five of the 15 second round challengers.

Vanderveen and the 12-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding were third in the jump-off order-of-go and broke the beam in 39.091 seconds, which set the pace for the rest of the 12 horse and rider combinations that would prove to be unbeatable.

“My strategy was to basically start with a gallop and be able to hold it the whole way,” said Vanderveen. “There were a lot of hard left turns right at the beginning in the jump-off, and he’s really handy to the left, so I was able to not worry too much about making the turn because he’ll cut left fast anyways. So I tried to start before jump one with a really good gallop and never take away from him. He did quite well with that.”

It did not look like anyone would come close to Vanderveen’s time until five rounds later when Andrew Ramsay and Cocq A Doodle, owned by The Doodle Group, entered the ring. They raced around the shortened track to catch Vanderveen’s time but only made it within 9/10th of a second, after laying down a solid double-clear effort, finishing in 39.942 seconds and taking second place honors.

Even as the second to last jump-off contenders were unable to catch Vanderveen’s time, she had already secured her win for the class by returning to the ring as the last entry to go in the jump-off round on her second mount, Bull Run’s Holy Smokes.

“Bull Run’s Holy Smokes is actually a little bit greener than [Bull Run’s Eternal] is,” said Vanderveen. “It was a really nice feeling to be able to come in and know that she doesn’t need to really run like crazy so I was going to go for a nice slow, clean round and then she hit the last jump down, but I’m still really pleased with her. She hasn’t done nearly as much as he’s done.”

Rounding out the top three in the Sunday finale of the Kentucky Spring Horse Show was Ramiro Quintana and Whitney, owned by St. Bride’s Farm. They tripped the timers in 40.215 seconds.

After a successful finish to the Kentucky Spring Horse Show, Vanderveen will be returning to Tryon next week to train clients, but always enjoys visiting and competing at the Kentucky Horse Shows.

“After this week, I think I should never leave Kentucky,” laughed Vanderveen. “I jumped clean in every single FEI class – it just hasn’t come to a win until today. I’m going back to Tryon next week. I have all of my clients in Tryon and they got this week off, so I’ll be back to help train them.

“I love the area here,” continued Vanderveen. “I love that the horses can graze and can go out on the trail rides. I think it’s so great for their minds. The stadium’s great as well. I love riding in a big ring. I have a lot of big horses with big steps so to be able to just open up and gallop around the course is how my horses jump best and go best, and I like to ride that.”

Earlier in the day, the Under 25 Grand Prix was held in the Rolex Stadium and the blue ribbon went to Noel Fauntleroy and her own Cabras, who bested a starting field of 26 and a jump-off field of 13.

“I started riding [Cabras] a little over a year ago in Florida last year,” said Fauntleroy. “She was part of the gold medal team and won an individual bronze medal at the North American Junior and Young Rider Championships last year. She is very comfortable. She might look a little hot, but she’s actually kind of cold. I have to get her going, but once I do she’s all game and will jump anything. She’s really brave.”

Fauntleroy and the 12-year-old Holsteiner mare were among six to produce double-clear rounds, finishing the fastest by one second in 30.003 seconds.

“My plan today was to just stick with the numbers,” said Fauntleroy. “The jump-off I thought was a really good test for the riders. From one to two there was an option for seven or eight strides, and I trust her a lot so I went with seven and knew that she would jump that. I made sure to go inside the gazebo after the two because I didn’t think anyone else had done that, and I think that might have been where I made up a little bit of time.”

Eve Jobs and her own Sandor De La Pomme were close behind Fauntleroy stopping the timers in 31.242 seconds to take second place, while Hunter Holloway and VDL Bravo S, owned by Hays Investment Corp., took the third place spot finishing in 32.489 seconds.

Having shown in the U25 series multiple times, Fauntleroy really appreciates the bridge the series provides for young riders to develop experience at competing their horses on an international level.

“I think it’s an awesome stepping-stone for young riders,” said Fauntleroy. “If you feel like you’re over-qualified for the highs but aren’t ready to go into the Saturday night classes yet, the U25 series is a perfect stepping-stone for that.”

In addition, Fauntleroy shared similar sentiments as Vanderveen in regards to competing at the Kentucky Horse Shows.

“Kentucky always has a really good atmosphere,” said Fauntleroy. “There’s lots of open space for the horses. The footing is always amazing. It’s been pouring rain and you can’t even tell. It’s really an awesome place to come!”

The Kentucky Spring Classic held May 18-22 will also feature a FEI CSI3* rating. The $35,000 Welcome Speed will be held on Wednesday, followed by the $35,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic on Thursday, as riders try to accumulate valuable points for the Hagyard Leading Rider Bonus. On Saturday, May 21, riders will compete under the lights in the Rolex Stadium during the $130,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix. Once again all three FEI classes will count for the Longines Ranking List and the Thursday and Saturday classes will also count for the Rolex/USEF Show Jumping Ranking List. In addition, the featured national classes will be the $50,000 Bluegrass Grand Prix, which counts towards the Rolex/USEF Show Jumping Ranking List, and the $25,000 Under 25 Grand Prix to be held on Sunday, May 22, in the Rolex Stadium.

Kelley Farmer Wins $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby

Sunday was ‘Derby Day’ in the Claiborne Ring at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show with the $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby as well as the $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby. The International Hunter Derby was dominated by Kelley Farmer who took the top two spots on Baltimore and Point Being and had a total of five horses in the class. The third spot went to Peter Wylde and Quax.

Kelley Farmer and Baltimore
Kelley Farmer and Baltimore

Farmer took the lead in the first round on Baltimore, an 11-year-old Oldenburg gelding with a score of 189, taking all four high options on the Bobby Murphy-designed course. “When you jump the high options, he can jump careful and it doesn’t matter what you get,” said Farmer. “Long or deep, he doesn’t really care. He is that dependable, that careful, that brave – that’s him. No matter what I ask him he tries.”

With five horses in the class, Farmer was able to use each round to improve her plan for the next. “When we walked the handy and we saw the inside turns I thought they were ugly to be totally honest,” Farmer explained. “I did them on Need I Say because he is handy. I thought if he can do them then at least I know how hard or not hard they are. I kind of knew what I was going to do on Need I Say and was a little bit play-it-by-ear on the rest depending on what everyone else did and how it was going.”

Farmer and Baltimore excelled in the handy, pulling in scores of 89 and 90 from the judges. Adding on four points for taking the high options, and seven and five handy points, respectively, bringing their total score to 388. She was full of praise for Baltimore’s performance in the handy round.

“Baltimore can get so high and so careful,” said Farmer. “He can land and turn. He is so catty and his front end is so automatic. He’s a fantastic horse.”

Farmer also impressed the judges on Point Being bringing in a score of 369 and taking all of the high options in both rounds. Peter Wylde and Quax were right behind her in third place with a score of 368.5.

Earlier in the day, Geoffery Hesslink excelled in the $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby winning aboard Rookie, an 8-year-old Warmblood gelding, and taking third place with Esco. Douglas Boyd took second place with Calido’s Son.

The $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby is part of the $40,0000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby series which is returning for the fifth year in a row at the Kentucky Horse Park. The five-part series awards a $15,000 Hallway Feeds Leading Rider Bonus presented at the conclusion of the series.

Hesslink started off the first round with a score of 90, taking all four high options. “My first round was a little conservative,” Hesslink said. “I was a little nervous with how the class was going, but I decided to do all the high options and I think that really paid off because not many other people did.”

Hesslink returned in the handy round taking three of the high options to a score of 89 and a total score of 179. “I liked my handy round a lot better,” Hesslink admitted. “I went all out and tried to do all the inside turns. I tend to be better at those and I thought both horses were amazing.”

Hesslink praised the course design for its ability to play to each horse’s strengths. “I thought the course was great. It was a lot of singles and long approaches,” Hesslink explained. “You were able to show your horse’s stride and ride the course out of a rhythm.”

Douglas Boyd and Calido’s Son were right behind Hesslink in second place with a score of 178. Hesslink rounded out the top three with a score of 176 aboard his second mount Esco.

Hesslink was enthusiastic about his experience here in Kentucky. “I came here last summer for the first time,” Hesslink said. “I really liked it and that’s why I’m back this year. I think the Kentucky Horse Park is an amazing facility and they do a great job here with everything from the jumps to the events and the prestige – they make it really nice for the spectators and riders.”

The Kentucky Spring Classic will continue May 18-22 with the $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby in the Stonelea Ring on Saturday, May 21. The Kentucky Spring Classic will also offer WIHS and NAL qualifiers plus $10,000 Show Jumping Hall of Fame Classics.

EQSportsNet will be streaming live webcasts of the $130,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix CSI3* during the Kentucky Spring Classic on Saturday, May 21. EQSportsNet Full Access subscribers can also watch all rounds of the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows series on demand at www.eqsports.net.

For more information on Kentucky Horse Shows LLC and the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows, please visit www.kentuckyhorseshows.com.

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

Eugenio Garza and Bariano Win $130k Hollow Creek Farm Grand Prix CSI3* at Kentucky Spring

Eugenio Garza and Bariano.

Danhakl and Gochman Claim Championships in Amateur-Owner Hunter Divisions

Lexington, Ky. – May 14, 2016 – The Kentucky Spring Horse Show concluded on Saturday with the day’s highlight event: the $130,000 Hollow Creek Farm Grand Prix CSI3*. Eugenio Garza (MEX) and Bariano bested a field of 41 competitors to claim the top prize with a blazing jump-off round in 39.160 seconds.

“I’ve had [Bariano] for almost four years,” said Garza. “He’s been my horse for everything. He’s taken me from Children’s Jumpers to the grand prix, so I owe him pretty much everything. He feels better than ever. He really gave it his all tonight and I couldn’t be more proud of him.”

Nine horse and rider combinations were able to master the Bernardo Costa Cabral opening course, moving into a jump-off that six would go on to produce double-clear efforts from.

“The course was really nice, [Bernado] did an extremely good job,” said Garza. “It was definitely a challenge – something to think about while going around the course, but it was not crazy. I think it was overall a really nice track. His tracks have been amazing all week and I think it was perfect for tonight.”

Aaron Vale (USA) and Quidam’s Good Luck, owned by Troy Gaus, were hoping to claim their second consecutive Hollow Creek Farm Grand Prix after winning the event in 2015. They were the early clear pathfinders in the first round and set the pace for the jump-off as the first to take on the shortened track in a speedy 39.920 seconds.

“[Bernardo] does a great job every time,” said Vale. “He gives a tight time allowed, but gives you different ways to get it. You can leave some strides out; you can make a short turn to the left or a short turn to the right. You kind of ride your horse and figure out a way to make the time allowed. Tight times allowed with these big fields are popular these days, but he does it fairly. If your horse has a weakness or a strength you can kind of pick and choose and still make the time.

“Quidam’s Good Luck wins a lot all year long, but he especially goes well in this ring,” continued Vale. “He won both FEI grand prix last spring, and he’s won some other grand prix here as well. This horse just loves this ring. He goes super here. Kentucky is a great place; it’s one of the premier facilities in the country, if not the premier facility.”

Shane Sweetnam (IRL) and Chaqui Z, owned by Spy Coast Farm, entered the Rolex Stadium one round later and attempted to catch Vale’s time, but felt short by one second in 40.540 seconds. The pair would go on to take third place honors.

It was looking like Vale would take the title once again until Garza, who placed second behind Vale last year, and the 15-year-old Belgium Warmblood gelding, owned by El Milagro, returned to the ring to challenge Vale’s time as seventh in the jump-off order-of-go.

The two horse and rider combinations battled it out for the second year in a row, but this year it was Garza who was able push ahead Vale’s time by 8/10th’s of a second to take the lead in the victory gallop.

“Leading off the jump-off, you never want to go first, but better to go first in the jump-off than not at all,” laughed Vale. “I was quite fast to the fourth jump. I did check up a little to the combination and again to the last, and that was the difference. If I could have found one of those strides to leave out I don’t think Eugenio would have got me.”

“I saw Aaron go first – and you know Aaron, he’s very fast – and I honestly didn’t think anyone could catch him, including me,” admitted Garza. “My trainer, Eddie Macken, just told me to feel how it goes, and just give it my all and that’s what we did. Bariano just helped me out and was amazing and everything just came up really nice in the jump-off. I think I was able to gain a little bit more time to the last one. I took one stride less than Aaron, but it was really close and I don’t think I could asked anything more from Bariano.”

The young rider from Mexico enjoys returning to the Kentucky Horse Shows each spring and competing at the world-renowned Kentucky Horse Park.

“Kentucky always treats us well,” said Garza. “I love it here. It’s an amazing facility, the footing is perfect, the organization is amazing – we just love it here. Fortunately, we’ve been doing well and it’s just an amazing show to come to. It’s really relaxed and it’s great for the horses. The weather has been great all weekend and the horses love it here.

“A big thank you to all of my team,” continued Garza. “They have been amazing and I’m just so happy to have such a great team behind me.”

The Kentucky Spring Horse Show will come to an end on Sunday with the $25,000 Under 25 Grand Prix and the $50,000 Commonwealth Grand Prix, which will count toward valuable points earned in the Rolex/USEF Show Jumping Ranking List.

Danhakl and Gochman Claim Championships in Amateur-Owner Hunter Divisions

It was all about the stallions on a cold and blustery day Saturday at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show in the Stonelea Ring. Championships in the Amateur-Owner 18-35 and Amateur-Owner 36 and Over Hunter divisions both went to stallions. In the younger division, Stephanie Danhakl took home the top prize on her 7-year-old Hanoverian stallion First Light. The reserve championship went to Alliy Moyer and Carlson. In the older division that followed, Becky Gochman won the championship aboard the 14-year-old Warmblood stallion Empire with the reserve going to John Ingram and Airport 48.

Stephanie Danhakl and First Light
Stephanie Danhakl and First Light

First Light was back in the tricolors today having won the Regular Conformation Hunter championship on day two with trainer Scott Stewart.

“First Light is definitely my greenest horse,” Danhakl explained. “He’s only 7 years old this year and he’s a stallion, so he’s a little bit trickier for me. I feel like I started to get the hang of him this year. He’s a little different ride than what I’m used to. He really requires you to direct him and be very accurate in your turns and balanced. He keeps me on my toes.”

The drastic change in the weather was certainly a factor for riders on Saturday.

“When I got on him today he was very fresh because of all the wind,” Danhakl said. “He was still a little fresh in the ring, but he gives you such a great feeling and is very well mannered. He whinnied a few times going around, but I’m sort of used to that so he really was great.”

Gochman also commented on the cooler weather Saturday.

“It was a very brisk day in Lexington, Kentucky, so I had a little bit of a different horse in Empire today,” Gochman said. “He was feeling a little frisky. Yesterday we really clicked. I feel like he’s in a really great frame of mind and he’s just such a special horse.”

Another generation of winning hunters may be on the way for Gochman as well.

“We’re excited because we recently purchased his son Evermore,” Gochman explained. “We hope he can take after his dad in his ways too.”

Danhakl and Gochman were both full of praise for the Kentucky Spring Horse Show and the city of Lexington.

“It’s a great tradition for us to come here,” Gochman said. “It breaks up the ride back home for the horses and it gives us a chance to compete somewhere where the fences are really put together in a lovely manner.”

Gochman was also enthusiastic about all that Lexington has to offer.

“We have always enjoyed the town of Lexington,” Gochman continued. “The whole Gochman family can’t get enough of it. We really enjoy the restaurants and the horse themed artwork throughout the town. It always holds a special place in our hearts so we are always excited to come back to Kentucky.”

Danhakl was also appreciative of the environment at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show.

“It’s such a beautiful place,” said Danhakl. “I love all of the greenery, the grass, the rolling hills and the trees everywhere. I like to be able to escape the heat at this time of year in Florida. All of the horses just left and came straight here so they’ve had a nice time getting to enjoy the cooler weather.”

Sunday is “Derby Day” with the $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby and the $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby taking place.

EQSportsNet will be streaming live webcasts of the $130,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix CSI3* during the Kentucky Spring Classic on Saturday, May 21. EQSportsNet Full Access subscribers can also watch all rounds of the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows series on demand at www.eqsports.net.

For more information on Kentucky Horse Shows LLC and the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows, please visit www.kentuckyhorseshows.com.

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

Eve Jobs and Quickley 3 Take Top Spot in Medium A-O/Jr. Jumpers at Kentucky Spring Horse Show

Eve Jobs and Quickley 3.

Emma Kurtz Takes Back-to-Back Equitation Wins with Clearway

Lexington, Ky. – May 13, 2016 – Eve Jobs and Quickley 3 had a strong debut Friday on day three of the Kentucky Spring Horse Show, besting a field of 31 in the Medium Amateur-Owner/Junior Jumpers in a time of 52.038 seconds. Dana Wille and Olympus were close behind Jobs with a second place finish in 52.104 seconds.

From the start, Jobs made a plan that paid off in time saved.

“We looked at the inside turn from two to three when we walked the course and were a little skeptical about trying it,” said Jobs. “Then the first one went in and was fast and efficient, and it didn’t look too bad, so that was the one turn where I think I made up the most time.”

Quickley 3, an 11-year-old Westphalian gelding, is coming off of a successful winter season, having won the Medium Junior Jumper championships three times at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF).

“I’ve had this horse for just over a year,” Jobs explained. “I’ve pretty much kept him in the Medium Junior Jumpers. He’s a really simple ride. He loves to go fast; he’s really careful, he’s catty, he’s quick and he’s been one of my best horses for about a year now.”

Jobs was full of praise for the Kentucky Spring Horse Show, with this being her first time competing at the show.

“This is actually the first time we’ve been here for the Kentucky Spring series,” Jobs said. “I’ve been here in the summer for young riders and in the winter for the National Horse Show. We decided to come here for the spring because we thought it would be a nice preparation for the Devon Horse Show’s junior week. All of the horses have been going great. The weather has been beautiful and I’m really happy we came!”

Jobs plans to compete in the $25,000 Under 25 Grand Prix on Sunday and is enthusiastic about the opportunities that the division offers.

“I did the division in Wellington, and I feel my best rounds were in that division,” Jobs explained. “I think it’s a wonderful bridge between the junior and the professional divisions. There are a bunch of kids in it. It’s great competition, and it’s big and technical. I’ve had a lot of success in those classes and I’m really excited that they are having a grand prix here.”

Jobs also took her talents to the equitation ring Friday afternoon, placing third in the WIHS Equitation Hunter Phase.

In the Low Amateur-Owner Jumpers, Madison Dehaven scored a meaningful win aboard Chanel, topping a field of 35 in a time of 33.611 seconds – a full second faster than Anna Dryden and Caprice 463 who took second place in 34.622 seconds.

“I have had her since she was three months old, so she’s kind of special to me,” Dehaven said of the 8-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare. “I bought her when she was a weanling. I was 15 then and trained her myself and brought her along.”

Careful planning in the course walk also paid off for Dehaven and Chanel.

“Everything kind of went as planned,” said Dehaven. “I walked with Aaron [Vale’s] wife, Mallory, and we came up with our game plan and went out there and rode it pretty much as close to what I wanted to as I could. In the jump-off, I had planned nine down the one line and ended up on a big stride and the eight just came up and was right there so we went with it. That was probably part of the reason we had the time we did. I was really happy with how she went today.”

Similar to Jobs, Dehaven was enthusiastic about the environment at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show.

“I love Kentucky,” said Dehaven. “There’s really no better place to be to show. We spend all winter in Florida and it’s nice to change the venue up. The horses all jump great and go great here. We love being here!”

Emma Kurtz Takes Back-to-Back Equitation Wins with Clearway

Emma Kurtz dominated the Stonelea Ring on Friday at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show with back-to-back equitation wins in the WIHS Equitation Hunter Phase and the ASPCA Maclay on Clearway, owned by Dr. Betsee Parker.

Kurtz and Clearway are coming off of a successful 2016 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) season, after claiming numerous top placings in the equitation ring, but Kurtz has not shown the 10-year-old Warmblood gelding since the circuit ended in April.

Emma Kurtz and Clearway (Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography)
Emma Kurtz and Clearway (Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography)

“I’m very excited about today,” said Kurtz. “He hasn’t shown in probably a month and a half. It’s been a long time since these horses have shown, so it’s really nice to come out here and have them be perfect.”

Kurtz piloted Clearway, who previously had a famously decorated equitation career with Tori Colvin, past 24 horse and rider combinations in the WIHS Equitation Hunter Phase and 22 in the ASPCA Maclay to take the two blue ribbons.

“It’s big shoes to fill for sure, but he’s an amazing horse and I love him,” said Kurtz.

The pair impressed the judges in the ASPCA Maclay on Friday with a smooth and effortless round, navigating an in-and-out combination to a bending line as well as rollbacks and a brush fence.

“Since it was in a hunter ring, it was like a hunter-y kind of course but it was really nice,” said Kurtz. “The bending was just a normal eight off the turn, and then just the two straight lines and the in-and-out. It wasn’t too challenging so that was nice, especially coming off of the Winter Equestrian Festival [WEF].”

Out of the 22 original entries, 11 were called back to show on the flat.

Kurtz’s equitation once again stood out as the judges challenged the riders to demonstrate a working canter, a half turn and reverse at the sitting trot, a lengthening of stride at the trot and a working walk.

Finishing in second in the ASPCA Maclay behind Kurtz was Emma Wujek and Isle of Wight, owned by Castlewood Farm, Inc. of Wellington, Florida.

“Today’s course wasn’t too technical,” said Wujek. “This was like a nice hunter equitation course. My horse was awesome. He’s a young one. We just got him this past WEF and he’s come so far. He’s gotten so much stronger. He’s a great horse.”

Rounding out the top three was Lauren Brown and Cashmann, owned by Angela Brown.

Sunday is “Derby Day” with the $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby and the $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby taking place.

EQSportsNet will stream live webcasts of the $130,000 Hollow Creek Farm Grand Prix CSI3* on Saturday as well as the $130,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix CSI3* during the Kentucky Spring Classic on Saturday, May 21. EQSportsNet Full Access subscribers can also watch all rounds of the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows series on demand at www.eqsports.net.

For more information on Kentucky Horse Shows LLC and the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows, please visit www.kentuckyhorseshows.com.

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

Pablo Barrios Debuts ASD Farfala with $35,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic CSI3* Victory

Pablo Barrios and ASD Farfala.

Kelley Farmer and It’s Me Claim Grand Hunter Championship on Day Two of the Kentucky Spring Horse Show

Lexington, Ky. – May 12, 2016 – The 2016 Hagyard Challenge series, sponsored by the Hagyard Equine Medical Institute, kicked off its eleventh year at the Kentucky Horse Shows on Thursday evening with the $35,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic. Sixty-six horse and rider combinations went head-to-head in the CSI3* competition, but it was Pablo Barrios (VEN) who took the victory with ASD Farfala. The talented pair beat out of a field of 14 during the jump-off, tripping the timers in a speedy 37.940 seconds.

Riders battled the elements during Thursday’s class, but the rain did not faze ASD Farfala, owned by Barrios, who has only been riding the 12-year-old Warmblood mare for a month. The Kentucky Spring Series marks their first horse show together, but the two are already demonstrating a winning partnership.

“I’ve known the mare for a long time,” said Barrios. “It belongs to a very good friend of mine, Americo Simonetti. He is a legend in the sport in South America from Chile and he kindly let me ride this wonderful mare that I’ve known for a long time.

“The mare came to the Winter Equestrian Festival with a rider from Chile and when she was about to go back to Chile I called him and asked if they could leave her with me,” continued Barrios. “I love the mare and I think I can do a great job with her. It’s amazing, when you have a good horse, how easy it is to go clean and fast. This is my first horse show with her. I was concerned about whether to put her in a lower class, but she’s so smart and talented I thought, ‘Why hold her back?’ So I went straight to it. When I call [Americo] again he is going to be very happy!”

Aaron Vale (USA) and Quidam’s Good Luck, owned by Troy Glaus, were the early pathfinders as well as the fastest pair to navigate the technical first round track, designed by Bernardo Costa Cabral, finishing in a fault-free effort of 74.100 seconds. The two later returned to the jump-off finishing double clear in 38.210 seconds, just one second behind Barrios claiming second place honors.

“Quidam’s Good Luck is a fast horse,” said Vale. “It was a nice galloping track with smooth, sweeping turns, which really suits him. We just took a shot. He feels like he’s going well and he likes this ring, so we took a shot. We had a really quick round. I just couldn’t leave one out to the last on him. We put in a great round and Pablo just beat me by fractions, so can’t complain too much!”

Vale also finished double clear again placing third with his second mount of the evening, Finou 4, owned by Thinkslikeahorse, in 39.540 seconds.

“I saw Aaron and I knew he was very fast,” said Barrios. “I knew he had a horse behind me and I really tried. I saw him doing seven strides one to two. My plan was to do six or seven with her and I made it and I think any other horse would have had fence 15 down but she just left it up because she is amazing. I’m so excited with this mare and I’m thankful to get to ride her.

“The winners always say that the course is really good, but we were talking before the class with all of the riders and I mentioned that every single class has been very well designed so far,” said Barrios. “I think this is one of the difficult classes to build. He had a great jump-off, a great class and I was very excited. Not because I won but because I like it, and it’s always very nice to beat Aaron because he is very fast!”

Barrios is no stranger to the winner’s circle at the Kentucky Horse Shows. He won the Hagyard Challenge series back to back in 2013 and 2014 and is already off to a strong start in the 2016 series.

“I have a good vibe here; I feel like this is home,” said Barrios.

“Every time you come they have done something new” said Vale. “The rings are great, they always get top-notch course designers and they have a great set of jumps. It’s a top quality product and it’s great to be here. I showed here for the first time in 1988. Jumpers back then were on the grass where the Claiborne Ring is now!”

Barrios is also set to compete on the Venezuelan team at the Rio Olympic Games this summer with Antares, his 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding.

“I’m going with Antares,” said Barrios. “I’m showing him very lightly. He showed three times at WEF. I used him a lot last year because my mare got hurt. I’m starting to use him a little bit more and working on the fitness when I run him so he gets a little cardio. This is the time to do it before the Games.  Then, I’ll keep him a little fresh for the Games; that’s the plan.

“I want to thank Devoucoux, Purina and MDC Stirrups – without those stirrups it’s very hard to ride in the rain so that’s very awesome that I was wearing them tonight. Also Animo, my new sponsor of boots, Parlanti and Choice of Champions.”

The Hagyard Challenge series consists of seven grand prix classes to be held during the 2016 show series at the Kentucky Horse Park. Following the final event, a cash prize of $50,000 will be awarded to the rider accumulating the most points throughout the series as well as a $10,000 prize for the reserve champion.

“Anything that gives us a chance to make a little extra money you have to appreciate,” said Vale. “They have been great supporters for 11 years. It sure is a nice thing for us to have a chance to get a rider bonus at the end of the year. It’s good for the horse show, good for Hagyard and good for the riders.”

Throughout the summer, the top riders from across the nation will gather to compete over challenging courses and vie for the winning title and valuable points toward the $50,000 Leading Rider Bonus. The Kentucky Spring Classic, May 18-22, will host the second $35,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic CSI3* on Thursday, May 19. Four more Hagyard Lexington Classic grand prix events will be held during the Kentucky Summer Horse Show, the Kentucky Summer Classic, the Bluegrass Festival Horse Show and the KHJA Horse Show. The series concludes with the $65,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic during the Kentucky National Horse Show. Following that exciting competition, the winner of the $50,000 Leading Rider Bonus will be announced and presented with the cash prize by the Hagyard Equine Medical Institute.

New this year to the Hagyard Challenge series is the $200 Best Turned Out award, sponsored by Bob Mickler’s. The award goes to a well-deserving groom following each grand prix. Following Thursday’s competition Andre Luis, groom to Mark Bluman and Uitteraard of Stransky’s Mission Farms, won the first Best Turned Out award of the series.

Kelley Farmer and It’s Me Claim Grand Hunter Championship on Day Two of the Kentucky Spring Horse Show

Kelley Farmer and It’s Me had another banner day in the Stonlea Ring at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show Thursday claiming the Hunter Grand Championship sponsored by Visse Wedell at Douglas Elliman Real Estate.

Kelley Farmer and It's Me (Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography)
Kelley Farmer and It’s Me (Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography)

Farmer swept the over fences classes in the Green Conformation Hunters with the 8-year-old Warmblood stallion It’s Me, scoring the division championship and going on to claim the Grand Hunter Championship.

Wedell has been a great supporter of the Kentucky Horse Shows sponsoring grand championship prizes in multiple divisions. “I love that a stallion won,” Wedell said. “Kelley actually rode a horse of mine a long time ago for me so I’m thrilled that they were able to be Grand Hunter Champion at the first horse show here in beautiful Kentucky.

“I love this facility so much,” added Wedell, who recently purchased a property nearby. “It’s such a pleasure to be here I’ve officially decided to based myself here for the season, so I’ve invested myself personally in the area because I love it here so much.”

Farmer was thrilled with her win today as It’s Me is a special horse for her. “He belongs to Sue [Pinney] and my mom [Bibby Hill] and I,” Farmer explained. “The last one my mom owned was Scripted. It is really special for mom to own a part of him with us.”

Farmer was full of praise for the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows. “I love this horse show,” She said. “They do such a nice job, the jumps are beautiful, the footing is beautiful, the horses go perfectly and this is home for us now.”

It’s Me is clearly a fan of the show as well. “He’s been fantastic from the first day he’s been here,” noted Farmer. “He tries hard. He finds ways to win and he tries to win blue ribbons. He’s a great horse. I’m excited for Devon!”

Scott Stewart scored a hat trick today winning championships in three divisions. He won the Regular Conformation Hunter Championship aboard First Light, the Second Year Green Championship on Catch Me, and finished out the day winning the High Performance Hunter Championship with A Million Reasons, also bringing home the Reserve Championship with Cameo.

“We always come here because we stay in Florida and this is sort of on the way home,” Stewart explained.  “We take a little break after showing and this is our first time back. It’s always a nice place to come to get ready for Devon. Florida is great, but there’s so much going on. When they get here they get to be turned out and relax more. A lot of the young horses really mature and when they come here, they just relax.”

Catch Me clearly benefitted from this stop on the way home from Florida. “Catch Me is awesome,” Scott said.  “He hasn’t shown since the night class in Florida. He was good there so we stopped showing. He had a month of just hacking and then I jumped some little jumps with him after that, so this was his first time back and it was great!”

Friday will see the Amateur Owner Hunters taking over in the Stonelea Ring. Sunday is “Derby Day” with the $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby and the $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby taking place.

For more information on Kentucky Horse Shows LLC and the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows series, please visit www.kentuckyhorseshows.com.

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

Todd Minikus Pilots Four Horses to the Win at Kentucky Spring Horse Shows

Todd Minikus and Quality Girl win the $25,000 Bluegrass Classic at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show (Photo courtesy of Shawn McMillen Photography)

Lexington, Kentucky (May 18, 2015) – Vita Flex Victory Team member Todd Minikus jumped to first place on not just one but three horses at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show in the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington on May 6-10. This past weekend on May 15 in the Kentucky Spring Classic, Minikus won the $20,000 1.45m Bluegrass Classic on a fourth horse. He claimed victories aboard well-known mount Quality Girl, young horses Con Capilot and Maharaja Del Juncal, and Oldenburg gelding Cordonos. Vita Flex, a leading equine supplement brand with products designed to help horses carry their riders to victory, is proud to congratulate Minikus on his successes. The victories in Kentucky came as no surprise to spectators, as seasoned competitor Minikus has already been extremely successful earlier this year in Wellington, Florida’s Winter Equestrian Festival and in the Longines Global Champions Tour of Miami Beach.

Minikus opened the Kentucky Spring Horse Show by winning on a new mount – Plum Creek Hollow Farm’s 12-year-old Westphalian stallion Con Capilot – in the $5,000 1.45m Open Jumper Class. Maharaja Del Juncal, a young horse owned by Two Swans Farms, finished first in the Six-Year-Old Jumpers. Quality Girl, owned by the Quality Group, bested the competition in the $25,000 Bluegrass Classic.

Quality Girl, a 12-year-old Oldenburg mare (Quidams Rubin x Dobrock), has been ridden by Minikus for the past three years. The pair have enjoyed much success, including winning the 2014 Zoetis $1 Million Grand Prix at HITS Saugerties, NY. Quality Girl was also named Horse of the Year last year. At the Kentucky Spring Horse Show, Minikus and Quality Girl were one of only three clear rounds and blazed through the jump-off to beat the starting field of 37 combinations with a time of 33.609 seconds. The victory earned the pair valuable points for the USEF/Rolex Show Jumping Rankings.

During the Kentucky Spring Classic, Minikus and Cordonos (Lordanos x Tin Rocco), owned by Matthew de Grande, raced to first place in the $20,000 1.45m Bluegrass Classic. Of the forty-seven riders who competed in the speed class, only eleven cleared Bernardo Cabral’s course. Minikus and Cordonos’s time of 60.766 put them ahead of closest contender Shane Sweetnam and Beluga.

The Vita Flex Victory Team rider Todd Minikus credits a well-planned training program complemented by conscientious nutrition and supplements from Vita Flex as helping achieve such success in show jumping. “The fine line between good and great is paying attention to your horses,” Minikus explains. “To be able to feel that power and speed and athleticism is very special. Vita Flex helps me keep my horses in tip-top condition for competing, and makes sure that we stay in the winner’s circle.”

Vita Flex, with advanced supplements specifically created for equine athletes, will be with Minikus and his horses as he campaigns for a spot on the U.S. team for the Pan American Games in Toronto in July. Vita Flex® products include health supplements, antioxidants, electrolytes, joint supplements, performance supplements, topical ointments, vitamins, and minerals. For more information about Vita Flex, its products, and the Victory Team members, visit www.vitaflex.com or call (800) 848-2359.

Contact Katie Stevenson
kstevenson@central.com
www.vitaflex.com
(602) 281-3872

Todd Minikus and Quality Girl Win $25,000 Blue Grass Classic

Todd Minikus and Quality Girl win the $25,000 Blue Grass Classic at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show (Photo courtesy of Kendall Bierer/Phelps Media Group)

Lexington, KY (May 12, 2015) – International show jumping veteran and trainer Todd Minikus knows quality when he sees it – and three years ago he started a winning streak synonymous with the word, thanks to a 12-year-old Oldenburg mare known as Quality Girl. Since then, man and mare have tallied some of the biggest wins in the sport – including the 2014 Zoetis $1 Million Grand Prix at HITS-Saugerties and Horse of the Year honors. Just this weekend, Minikus and Quality Girl once again surpassed competitors when they won the $25,000 Blue Grass Classic at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show in Lexington’s Kentucky Horse Park. Now, just five months into 2015, the veteran of more than 75 Grand Prix wins has added enough victories to this season’s tally to keep show office calculators busy and international competitors nervous.

Neither Minikus, nor Quality Girl and his other exceptional equine partners, are showing any signs of slowing down.

Minikus is strategically based in the Homeland equestrian development just minutes from Wellington, Florida’s Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) show grounds, where his 2015 victories began. In January, he led a 22-horse jump-off to win the $30,000 WEF Week 1 Grand Prix on Cordonos and set the pace for an epic season.

February’s Week 8 at the Winter Equestrian Festival saw Minikus ride his “greener” grand prix partner, Babalou 14, and anchor a winning Team USA effort against nine competing countries in the $100,000 Nations Cup presented by Kingsland Equestrian. The first to jump for his squad in each round, he delivered double clears on Two Swans Farms’ 10-year-old Oldenburg mare who – in lieu of his stand-out star, Quality Girl – Minikus had asked U.S. coach Robert Ridland for permission to use in the Nations Cup. “I really appreciate the fact that I have had the opportunity to bring her from a schooling jumper to winning a Nations Cup. That’s pretty special – she’s got a big future.”

His astute eye for rising talent was further confirmed in March with a second big win for Two Swans Farm on Babalou 14 against a starting field of 49 in the Winter Equestrian Festival’s $150,000 Grand Prix CSIO4*, presented by Lugano Diamonds.

As April action heated up along Miami Beach for the Longines Global Champions Tour, Minikus kept winning form against a world-class field. He rode Quality Group’s Oldenburg, Quality Girl, to win the $34,000 Elm Rock Prix 1.45/1.50m CSI5*. “I just let her do her thing,” he said. “Normally, it turns out well.”

Turning out “well” is an understatement for the pair, whose history last year includes winning the opening leg of FEI World Cup Jumping qualifiers in Bromont, Canada, finishing sixth at Harrisburg in October, and closing the year with enough points collected after the Washington International to win the FEI World Cup Jumping 2014/2015 North America East Coast League standings.

Minikus’s impressive results prompted HorseTalk of New Zealand reporters to note that all that was left this year was for Minikus to “sit back and let the rest catch up to him.”

Never one to sit still, though, Minikus sprang into Spring with two rising new talents to mark his third consecutive decade of winning performances in Kentucky. He scored a May 6 win for Plum Creek Hollow Farm in the $5,000 1.45m Open Jumper class on Westphalian stallion, Con Capilot, plus a win for Two Swans Farms in the Six Year Old Jumpers on Maharaja Del Juncal.

“I’m still experimenting with him,” he said of Con Capilot, after going in second in the order and setting a 42.680 effort too fast and too flawless for Aaron Vale and Bonzini S to catch.

“This was a great kick-off for Team Minikus in Kentucky. I’ve been coming here before it was the Kentucky Horse Park, when it was grass rings and they used gas station flags to separate them! It’s great to see how much it has grown.”

It’s just as great to watch how this American show jumping celebrity continues to grow a talented string of jumpers. To the thrill of fans, Minikus did not disappoint when he entered the arena on May 10 with Quality Girl to win the $25,000 Blue Grass Classic.

“This will be my third year with her, so it’s always nice to establish a partnership with a horse like this. You really think of her as a veteran of the sport, but it’s just her third year doing this sport at an upper level, so she’s just now really coming into her own, even though she has already had great success.”

The $25,000 Blue Grass Classic win has prompting pulling out those calculators again as Minikus tallies still more points on the USEF/Rolex Show Jumping Ranking List, where he has been seeded eighth on Babalou 14 and 23rd on Quality Girl.

Follow Team Minikus (hint, in his ‘spare time’ Todd Minikus’s hobby is bull riding) on Facebook or visit www.ToddMinikus.com and don’t miss a minute of the international news and action that keeps Florida and the world jumping.

Contact: Amanda Minikus
toddminikus@yahoo.com

Jennifer Alfano Takes 1-2 Finish with Jersey Boy and Miss Lucy in $15,000 USHJA Hunter Derby

Jennifer Alfano and Jersey Boy.

Lexington, KY – May 10, 2015 – In the world of hunter derbies, one name always stands out: Jersey Boy. Today, the 13-year-old chestnut gelding, better known as Lewis, delivered two textbook rounds with Jennifer Alfano during the WCHR Member Event, the $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, earning a total of 401 points to capture first place overall.

Rider Jennifer Alfano was skeptical about the class, due to the fact that Jersey Boy was so well behaved in the schooling ring. “Lewis is a little temperamental at times; you never really know with him,” Alfano laughed.

From the moment the duo stepped in to the ring, however, it was obvious that Jersey Boy had decided he wanted to impress. Taking all the higher options, Alfano navigated Jersey Boy smoothly through Bobby Murphy’s course, earning a 94 and 96 for the classic round.

“I haven’t ridden a lot of horses that can gallop and jump like he does,” Alfano said. “He is one of those that can stay on the gallop and turn and jump. He is so naturally balanced that I think the turning comes so easy for him.”

The pair especially excelled in the handy, pulling in scores of 92 and 94 from the judges. Adding on 4 points for taking the high options, and 9 and 8 handy points, respectively, Jersey Boy delivered the highest-scoring round of the day. “He definitely excels at the handy,” Alfano said. “That’s his thing.”

Alfano also impressed the judges on Miss Lucy, another mount she holds dear to her heart. Miss Lucy is back after almost two years, and has not slowed down a bit. Coming off of a derby win at the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, the mare put in another outstanding performance today to secure second place overall with a score of 374.

Jennifer Alfano and Miss Lucy
Jennifer Alfano and Miss Lucy

“It’s awesome to have Miss Lucy back,” Alfano said. “Aside from what she does in the ring, she is just a special horse. I’m very lucky to have the two of them.”

Tammy Provost and Kallisto earned a total score of 366.5 to claim third place, with Alfano back atop Miramar earning a 365.5 for fourth place. Fifth place was awarded to Havens Schatt, who piloted Savannah to a score of 360 points. Sarah Young and Gabriella rounded out the top six with a score of 357.

Alfano’s four entries all placed in the top 12 and will return to the Kentucky Horse Park in August for the long-anticipated 2015 USHJA International Hunter Derby Championship.

Earlier in the day, the $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby was underway, with Sarah Sturges leading the event from start to finish aboard Jessica Blum’s Conan. A smooth opening round resulted in a score of 93, and the pair retuned to the handy, receiving a 92 and utilizing the high options for a four-point boost.

“He likes to jump the jumps,” Sturges explained. “If I get him where he needs to be, he takes care of the rest of it. He’s pretty straightforward. He coasts around and he does his thing and I try to stay out of the way.”

Kelli Cruciotti and Totem Pole gave Sturges a run for her money, coming in second by a 2.5-point differential. The judges awarded their efforts with scores of 92 and 90.5 for a 182.5 total.

“Totem Pole was fantastic,” Cruciotti said. “He’s been a work in progress for the last three years. We bought him, and then he got hurt. We almost had to put him down. We redid everything and now he is coming back, so it’s kind of like a fairytale that he is being a super star. I cannot thank my sponsors and my team enough, it has been a wonderful day, and I love this class; it’s my favorite.”

Havens Schatt returned next riding Sans Souci for CH Farm LLC, having received a score of 90 in the first round. The pair earned a score of 91 in the handy. However, Cruciotti’s classic round score would give her a leg up for the second place honors, while Schatt would settle for third place today.

Sturges’ victory has her sitting at the top of the Hallway Feeds Leading Rider Bonus leader board, a place she knows all too well. In 2013, Sturges was awarded the $2,500 bonus as the leading amateur rider, and last year her trainer, Christopher Payne of New Hope LLC captured the $10,000 professional leading rider bonus. As an event of the five-part series, the Hallways Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby has become a staple at the spring and summer shows, and will continue into the summer series. The leading riders will be presented with the cash prizes at the end of the Bluegrass Festival on August 16, 2015.

“It definitely helps to start out on top,” Sturges said. “We are only an hour away, so we will definitely compete in the series, but whether or not I win the bonus, it is a fun class. I turned professional at the end of 2013, so it is fun trying to rack up the points for the professional bonus.”

The final day of the Kentucky Spring Horse Show concluded with the Grand Championships, sponsored by Visse Wedell of Douglas Elliman Real Estate. Emma Kurtz was awarded the Junior/Amateur-Owner Hunter Grand Championship for her efforts in the Small Junior 15 and Under Hunter division with Frederick, owned by David Gochman. The Junior/Amateur-Owner Hunter Reserve Grand Championship went to Vivian Yowan and Ransom, owned by Saddle Ridge LLC.

It was the Gochman sisters, Sophie and Mimi, who snatched up the Pony Hunter Grand Championship and Pony Hunter Reserve Grand Championship, respectively. Sophie rode Bit of Love to the high point award during the Small Pony Hunters, while Mimi took the second tricolor for her efforts in the Large Pony Hunters.

The Kentucky Spring Classic will continue May 13-17, 2015, with the $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby in the Stonelea Ring. Both weeks of the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows will offer WIHS & NAL classics for Children’s & Adult hunter and jumper riders as well as $10,000 Show Jumping Hall of Fame Classics.

To learn more about the Kentucky Spring Horse Show, please visit www.kentuckyhorseshows.com.

Kentucky Horse Shows 2015 Horse Show Series Fast Facts

Events: 2015 Kentucky Spring Horse Shows

What:
The Kentucky Horse Shows 2014 series includes two weeks of top hunter/jumper competitions during the month of May. The Kentucky Horse Show Series is the host of the Hagyard Challenge Series and Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby Series.

Where:
Kentucky Horse Park, Lexington, KY, site of the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™, home to the United States Equestrian Federation.

When:
KENTUCKY SPRING HORSE SHOW – May 6-10, 2015
$34,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic CSI2*
$85,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix CSI2*
$25,000 Bluegrass Classic
$25,000 U25 Classic
$15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby
$5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby
WCHR Recognized Hunter Competition

KENTUCKY SPRING CLASSIC – May 13-17, 2015
$34,000 Welcome Speed CSI3*
$34,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic CSI3*
$127,000 Hollow Creek Farm Grand Prix CSI3*
$50,000 Commonwealth Grand Prix
$20,000 Bluegrass Classic
$5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby

Sponsors:
A special thanks to the generous sponsors of the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows: Hagyard Equine Medical Institute, Hallway Feeds, Hollow Creek Farm, Audi of Lexington, Sleepy P Ranch, CWD, Farm Vet, Dietrich Insurance, Take2 Thoroughbred Program and the Official Hotel The Clarion.

Hours:
8am – 5pm daily

Parking:
Horse Show Exhibitors may purchase a weekly parking pass at the main Horse Park entrance for $15.00. Dogs are permitted at the Kentucky Horse Park on a leash.

Directions:
The Kentucky Horse Park is located 8 miles northeast of Lexington, Kentucky at Exit 120 on Interstate 75.

Information:
Before Show – (859) 233-0492, Email: hakshows@earthlink.net
During Show – Telephone: (859) 254-3343, Fax: (859) 231-6097
Stabling – Email Tom Blankenship at tomblank@bellsouth.net
Stable office – Before Show: (843) 269-4737, During Show: (859) 255-0605
Prize List Advertising – Email Cindy Bozan at cindy@kentuckyhorseshows.com or call (859) 608-3709
Vendors – Email Cindy Bozan at cindy@kentuckyhorseshows.com or call (859) 608-3709
Shownet – www.shownet.biz

Website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Shopping:
Vendors offering equestrian equipment, apparel, jewelry and home furnishings are located adjacent to the Stonelea Ring.

Hotels:

CLARION HOTEL (Formerly Holiday Inn North) – 859-233-0512 – Approximately 4 miles (OFFICIAL HOTEL)
Discover the place where elegant comfort in an ideal location meets excellent service and affordability. At the Clarion Hotel Lexington, you’ll find well-appointed accommodations with options of double/doubles, double queens, king rooms or suites, exceptional amenities such as our free hot breakfast buffet, and Southern hospitality at its finest. The best hotel for Keeneland – located in the heart of Kentucky’s Bluegrass Region – home of the Kentucky Horse Park, the Lexington Convention Center, University of Kentucky, and the Kentucky Bourbon Trail – our Lexington hotel is on Newtown Pike at Exit 115 on I-75, close to all the big attractions, and is the perfect place to stay whether you’re here to get down to business or have some fun. Best of all, bring your furry friends for any trip because the Clarion Hotel in Lexington is also pet-friendly.

CAMPGROUND RESERVATIONS:
Reservations may not be made through the Horse Show office. To reserve a campsite at the Kentucky Horse Park for any of the horse shows, please call the Campground store at (800) 370-6416 or 859-259-4157 or email Sherry Logan at sherryd.logan@ky.gov. Be specific as to the show name and the dates you wish to stay. Check-in time is 2:00 p.m. and check-out is 12:00 noon. You must make arrangements with the Campground store if you plan to arrive earlier than 2:00 p.m. or stay later than 12:00 noon. Vehicles that are not removed from a campsite by check-out time will be towed.

Management:
Kentucky Horse Shows, LLC
P. O. Box 11428
Lexington, KY 40575-1428
859-233-0492 (phone)
859-233-0495 (fax)
email: hakshows@earthlink.net
website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Media Contact:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12230 Forest Hill Blvd.
Suite 214
Wellington, FL 33414
561-753-3389 (phone)
561-753-3386 (fax)
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
www.phelpsmediagroup.com

Luifer Larrazabal and Atlodetto FZ Capture Inaugural $25,000 Under 25 Grand Prix Win

Luifer Larrazabal and Atlodetto FZ.

Lexington, KY – May 10, 2015 – The $25,000 Under 25 Grand Prix saw a start list of 33 horse and rider combinations gather at the Rolex Stadium for the pilot event on the final day of the Kentucky Spring Horse Show. It was Luifer Larrazabal of Venezuela who dashed for the cash Sunday afternoon, winning the majority of the purse with recent mount, Atlodetto FZ.

The 22-year-old consistently showed throughout the Wellington and Ocala circuits, even riding for his country’s team during the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup™ CSIO4* in at HITS Ocala. The young talent has been working to build a partnership with new mount, Atlodetto FZ, owned by San Francisco Stables LLC of Wellington, FL. The 8-year-old gelding showcased his impressive skills over Richard Jeffery’s track, becoming the final of only six pairs to qualify for the speed round.

“He’s very small actually; he was gelded very late, so he’s kind of like a stallion,” Larrazabal said of his winning mount. “He’s very sensitive, but he’s lazy; he doesn’t put out much effort when he jumps. He is a small horse, and he jumps little as well. When he goes in the ring, he tries to do the job very carefully, and he’s very quick. This is the best thing I’ve done with him since I got him in December; we have been working on building a relationship and improving.”

Wilton Porter was the first to return for the jump-off. Aboard Patriot, owned by Sleepy P Ranch of Bartonville, TX, he navigated the course to finish with the first of four double clears in 35.168 seconds. He continued to lead the way with Sophie Simpson and Why Not falling just behind his time with a clear effort in 35.353 seconds, and Kelli Cruciotti and Chamonix H tripping the timers in 36.523 seconds.

Larrazabal was the last in the ring, and he knew that he had to take some risks on the track in order to catch Porter’s pace. It was a little over one second that would separate the two in the end, and it was only one turn that made the difference.

“Today I didn’t how it was going to be, because this horse is kind of new for me,” Larrazabal explained. “The first round, I didn’t know what to expect in the ring, but he was super. In the jump-off there were only six, and I was last to go. I didn’t know I was going to go clear, but I knew I had to try a risk and try to win. I was lucky today.”

Larrazabal said, “I was a little bit risky to the last jump; it was a very tight turn, but that’s where I made up the time. A little bit risky, but I mean, he was super. He was jumping great; he felt so much better today, and I think he improved a lot, so maybe next week I will try to do the Grand Prix.”

Today marked Larrazabal’s first Under 25 Grand Prix, yet the series is not on his radar for the future. Although he thinks that the series is beneficial for up and coming riders, his aims are set on the Pan American Games in Toronto, Canada this summer. The Kentucky Spring Horse Shows are Larrazabal’s first stop in preparation for the Pan Ams, with Spruce Meadows next on his tour.

“I love Kentucky, and even more after you come from the Winter Equestrian Festival, after all those intense 12 weeks that you never stop, you know, over there it’s a little busy. Here it’s quieter; I only have four horses here, by myself, so here you can relax. It’s very nice; there are fields where you can flat the horses, and they don’t think that they are at a show. It keeps them fresh, and they feel like they’re at home resting.”

$25,000 Bluegrass Classic

International Grand Prix rider Todd Minikus knows quality, and three years ago he recognized it in the 12-year-old mare, Quality Girl. Since their partnership began, they have risen to the top of the ranks, capturing the win during the Zoetis $1 Million Grand Prix at HITS Saugerties, NY and earning Horse of the Year last year.

Todd Minikus and Quality Girl
Todd Minikus and Quality Girl

The formidable rider took Quality Girl, owned by the Quality Group of Loxahatchee, FL, to the top of the leader board Sunday during the $25,000 Bluegrass Classic, besting a field of 37 contenders.

Only three would clear Jeffery’s course and move into the jump-off, with Shane Sweetnam and Eregast Van’t Kiezelhof, owned by Spy Coast Farm of E. Setauket, NY, finishing second with a time of 34.055 seconds, less than half of a second shy of Minikus’ speedy 33.609 seconds. Third place was awarded to Roberto Teran and Farina, owned by Ark Partners LLC of Wellington, FL.

“To tell you the truth, I would have been jumping off the top of the building there if Quality Girl hadn’t gone clear,” Minikus laughed. “With that being said, she went beautiful out there. I kind of went medium knowing that Shane’s horse is not a speedster; it’s a power jumper. It worked out well.”

“This will be my third year with her, so it is always nice to establish a partnership with a horse like that,” Minikus acknowledged. “You really think of her as a veteran of the sport, but it is just her third year doing this sport at an upper level, so she just now is really coming into her own, even though she has had such great success. It’s nice to have a horse like her; I know every move that is going to happen. She is comfortable; it is like putting on that old leather jacket; it is comfortable and just kind of feels right.”

The $25,000 Bluegrass Classic helped Minikus earn valuable points for the USEF/Rolex Show Jumping Ranking List, where he currently sits in in the eighth position with horses Babalou 41 and Quality Girl listed in the ninth and 23rd positions, respectively.

The Kentucky Spring Classic will kick off next week with a CSI3* rating. The $34,000 Welcome Speed will be held on Wednesday, followed by the $34,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic on Thursday, as riders try to accumulate valuable points for the Hagyard Leading Rider Bonus. On Saturday, May 16, riders will compete under the lights in the Rolex Stadium during the $127,000 Hollow Creek Farm Grand Prix. All three of these FEI classes will count for the Longines Rider Ranking List. The $34,000 Hagyard Classic and the $127,000 Hollow Creek Grand Prix will also count for the USEF/Rolex Show Jumping Ranking List as will the $50,000 Commonwealth Grand Prix on Sunday, May 17th.

For more information about the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows, please visit www.kentuckyhorseshows.com.

Kentucky Horse Shows 2015 Horse Show Series Fast Facts

Events: 2015 Kentucky Spring Horse Shows

What:
The Kentucky Horse Shows 2014 series includes two weeks of top hunter/jumper competitions during the month of May. The Kentucky Horse Show Series is the host of the Hagyard Challenge Series and Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby Series.

Where:
Kentucky Horse Park, Lexington, KY, site of the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™, home to the United States Equestrian Federation.

When:
KENTUCKY SPRING HORSE SHOW – May 6-10, 2015
$34,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic CSI2*
$85,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix CSI2*
$25,000 Bluegrass Classic
$25,000 U25 Classic
$15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby
$5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby
WCHR Recognized Hunter Competition

KENTUCKY SPRING CLASSIC – May 13-17, 2015
$34,000 Welcome Speed CSI3*
$34,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic CSI3*
$127,000 Hollow Creek Farm Grand Prix CSI3*
$50,000 Commonwealth Grand Prix
$20,000 Bluegrass Classic
$5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby

Sponsors:
A special thanks to the generous sponsors of the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows: Hagyard Equine Medical Institute, Hallway Feeds, Hollow Creek Farm, Audi of Lexington, Sleepy P Ranch, CWD, Farm Vet, Dietrich Insurance, Take2 Thoroughbred Program and the Official Hotel The Clarion.

Hours:
8am – 5pm daily

Parking:
Horse Show Exhibitors may purchase a weekly parking pass at the main Horse Park entrance for $15.00. Dogs are permitted at the Kentucky Horse Park on a leash.

Directions:
The Kentucky Horse Park is located 8 miles northeast of Lexington, Kentucky at Exit 120 on Interstate 75.

Information:
Before Show – (859) 233-0492, Email: hakshows@earthlink.net
During Show – Telephone: (859) 254-3343, Fax: (859) 231-6097
Stabling – Email Tom Blankenship at tomblank@bellsouth.net
Stable office – Before Show: (843) 269-4737, During Show: (859) 255-0605
Prize List Advertising – Email Cindy Bozan at cindy@kentuckyhorseshows.com or call (859) 608-3709
Vendors – Email Cindy Bozan at cindy@kentuckyhorseshows.com or call (859) 608-3709
Shownet – www.shownet.biz

Website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Shopping:
Vendors offering equestrian equipment, apparel, jewelry and home furnishings are located adjacent to the Stonelea Ring.

Hotels:

CLARION HOTEL (Formerly Holiday Inn North) – 859-233-0512 – Approximately 4 miles (OFFICIAL HOTEL)
Discover the place where elegant comfort in an ideal location meets excellent service and affordability. At the Clarion Hotel Lexington, you’ll find well-appointed accommodations with options of double/doubles, double queens, king rooms or suites, exceptional amenities such as our free hot breakfast buffet, and Southern hospitality at its finest. The best hotel for Keeneland – located in the heart of Kentucky’s Bluegrass Region – home of the Kentucky Horse Park, the Lexington Convention Center, University of Kentucky, and the Kentucky Bourbon Trail – our Lexington hotel is on Newtown Pike at Exit 115 on I-75, close to all the big attractions, and is the perfect place to stay whether you’re here to get down to business or have some fun. Best of all, bring your furry friends for any trip because the Clarion Hotel in Lexington is also pet-friendly.

CAMPGROUND RESERVATIONS:
Reservations may not be made through the Horse Show office. To reserve a campsite at the Kentucky Horse Park for any of the horse shows, please call the Campground store at (800) 370-6416 or 859-259-4157 or email Sherry Logan at sherryd.logan@ky.gov. Be specific as to the show name and the dates you wish to stay. Check-in time is 2:00 p.m. and check-out is 12:00 noon. You must make arrangements with the Campground store if you plan to arrive earlier than 2:00 p.m. or stay later than 12:00 noon. Vehicles that are not removed from a campsite by check-out time will be towed.

Management:
Kentucky Horse Shows, LLC
P. O. Box 11428
Lexington, KY 40575-1428
859-233-0492 (phone)
859-233-0495 (fax)
email: hakshows@earthlink.net
website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Media Contact:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12230 Forest Hill Blvd.
Suite 214
Wellington, FL 33414
561-753-3389 (phone)
561-753-3386 (fax)
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
www.phelpsmediagroup.com

Stephanie Danhakl Wins Three Tricolors in Amateur-Owner Hunters at Kentucky Spring Horse Show

Stephanie Danhakl and Golden Rule.

Lexington, KY — May 9, 2015 — Stephanie Danhakl, Becky Gochman and their talented horses are no strangers to success, and today’s hunter classes at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show awarded the amateur riders plenty of chances to shine atop their entries.

The day began with the Amateur-Owner 18-35 3’6 Hunters, as Danhakl piloted her flashy chestnut Golden Rule to two third-place finishes. Despite only being the gelding’s third show this year, the pair from Pacific Palisades, California earned two blue ribbons and a red ribbon on Friday, adding up to enough points for the division championship.

“Golden Rule has just been a phenomenal horse,” Danhakl said. “He has been champion pretty much every time I’ve shown him. He just has a really great rhythm and a nice, slow, sort of even way of going, so he’s pretty easy to see the distances on. He has a big stride and is scopey. He’s my dream horse.”

Kelly Bauernschmidt and her horse Legato placed first over fences and eighth in the handy, and combined with the previous day’s blue ribbon and fifth-place finish, the duo earned the division’s reserve championship.

The next division of the day was the Amateur-Owner 35 plus 3’6 Hunters, in which Becky Gochman, of New York, New York, delivered smooth rides atop Last Call, her stunning seal bay gelding. The pair earned a blue ribbon, two second-place ribbons and a third-place ribbon over the course of two days, boosting them to the top of the pack to claim the division championship. Gochman proclaimed Last Call is a perfect delight, and the barn favorite always gets a ton of carrots.

Becky Gochman and Last Call
Becky Gochman and Last Call

“Last Call is a great horse; I have had him for not quite a year yet, but he is very sweet and he always wants to do his job,” Gochman said. “He’s so adjustable that it makes it easy for the rider. He is so big, and in the beginning I was a little intimidated, but he feels so comfortable to me now that I don’t think about his size.”

The division’s reserve championship was awarded to Emily Morin and Ace of Spades of McLean, Virginia. The pair combined a first-place finish with two fifths, a fourth and a third to earn the tricolor.

In the Amateur-Owner 18-35 3’3 Hunters, Danhakl captured both the division’s championship and reserve championship aboard her horses Enough Said and First Light, respectively.

“First Light has come such a long way,” Danhakl commented. “Every week, he just gets easier and easier to ride. I’ve only had him for a few months, and I’ve just kind of been getting to know him, figuring him out. He was great yesterday. Now he’s going well for me, which is nice.”

Saturday’s final division, the Amateur-Owner 35 plus 3’3 Hunters, got underway with Becky Gochman back in the irons on Mythical. The duo captured the division’s championship, with the reserve championship going to Dawn Fogel atop Summer Catch, of Louisville, KY.

The action of week one at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show will continue Sunday in The Claiborne for “Derby Day.” The highlight events will include $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby and the $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby.

To learn more about the Kentucky Spring Horse Show, please visit www.kentuckyhorseshows.com.

Kentucky Horse Shows 2015 Horse Show Series Fast Facts

Events: 2015 Kentucky Spring Horse Shows

What:
The Kentucky Horse Shows 2014 series includes two weeks of top hunter/jumper competitions during the month of May. The Kentucky Horse Show Series is the host of the Hagyard Challenge Series and Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby Series.

Where:
Kentucky Horse Park, Lexington, KY, site of the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™, home to the United States Equestrian Federation.

When:
KENTUCKY SPRING HORSE SHOW – May 6-10, 2015
$34,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic CSI2*
$85,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix CSI2*
$25,000 Bluegrass Classic
$25,000 U25 Classic
$15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby
$5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby
WCHR Recognized Hunter Competition

KENTUCKY SPRING CLASSIC – May 13-17, 2015
$34,000 Welcome Speed CSI3*
$34,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic CSI3*
$127,000 Hollow Creek Farm Grand Prix CSI3*
$50,000 Commonwealth Grand Prix
$20,000 Bluegrass Classic
$5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby

Sponsors:
A special thanks to the generous sponsors of the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows: Hagyard Equine Medical Institute, Hallway Feeds, Hollow Creek Farm, Audi of Lexington, Sleepy P Ranch, CWD, Farm Vet, Dietrich Insurance, Take2 Thoroughbred Program and the Official Hotel The Clarion.

Hours:
8am – 5pm daily

Parking:
Horse Show Exhibitors may purchase a weekly parking pass at the main Horse Park entrance for $15.00. Dogs are permitted at the Kentucky Horse Park on a leash.

Directions:
The Kentucky Horse Park is located 8 miles northeast of Lexington, Kentucky at Exit 120 on Interstate 75.

Information:
Before Show – (859) 233-0492, Email: hakshows@earthlink.net
During Show – Telephone: (859) 254-3343, Fax: (859) 231-6097
Stabling – Email Tom Blankenship at tomblank@bellsouth.net
Stable office – Before Show: (843) 269-4737, During Show: (859) 255-0605
Prize List Advertising – Email Cindy Bozan at cindy@kentuckyhorseshows.com or call (859) 608-3709
Vendors – Email Cindy Bozan at cindy@kentuckyhorseshows.com or call (859) 608-3709
Shownet – www.shownet.biz

Website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Shopping:
Vendors offering equestrian equipment, apparel, jewelry and home furnishings are located adjacent to the Stonelea Ring.

Hotels:

CLARION HOTEL (Formerly Holiday Inn North) – 859-233-0512 – Approximately 4 miles (OFFICIAL HOTEL)
Discover the place where elegant comfort in an ideal location meets excellent service and affordability. At the Clarion Hotel Lexington, you’ll find well-appointed accommodations with options of double/doubles, double queens, king rooms or suites, exceptional amenities such as our free hot breakfast buffet, and Southern hospitality at its finest. The best hotel for Keeneland – located in the heart of Kentucky’s Bluegrass Region – home of the Kentucky Horse Park, the Lexington Convention Center, University of Kentucky, and the Kentucky Bourbon Trail – our Lexington hotel is on Newtown Pike at Exit 115 on I-75, close to all the big attractions, and is the perfect place to stay whether you’re here to get down to business or have some fun. Best of all, bring your furry friends for any trip because the Clarion Hotel in Lexington is also pet-friendly.

CAMPGROUND RESERVATIONS:
Reservations may not be made through the Horse Show office. To reserve a campsite at the Kentucky Horse Park for any of the horse shows, please call the Campground store at (800) 370-6416 or 859-259-4157 or email Sherry Logan at sherryd.logan@ky.gov. Be specific as to the show name and the dates you wish to stay. Check-in time is 2:00 p.m. and check-out is 12:00 noon. You must make arrangements with the Campground store if you plan to arrive earlier than 2:00 p.m. or stay later than 12:00 noon. Vehicles that are not removed from a campsite by check-out time will be towed.

Management:
Kentucky Horse Shows, LLC
P. O. Box 11428
Lexington, KY 40575-1428
859-233-0492 (phone)
859-233-0495 (fax)
email: hakshows@earthlink.net
website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Media Contact:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12230 Forest Hill Blvd.
Suite 214
Wellington, FL 33414
561-753-3389 (phone)
561-753-3386 (fax)
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
www.phelpsmediagroup.com