Tag Archives: McLain Ward

McLain Ward Goes Three for Three in Five-Star Equinimity WEF Challenge Cups

McLain Ward and Hija van Strokapelleken. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – March 8, 2018 – There have been three CSI 5* $132,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cups at the 2018 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), and 2017 FEI World Cup Finals winner McLain Ward has led the victory gallop at each one. He repeated his WEF 7 win on Thursday, March 8, with Evergate Stable LLC’s Hija van Strokapelleken at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL.

Going second to last in the jump-off, Ward and Hija van Strokapelleken, an 11-year-old BWP mare by Calido I x Azur de Paulstra, sped through the track using the mare’s giant stride. Ward planned to do seven strides down the last line, but he had to make a last-minute adjustment to the final fence. They were still able to record the fastest time in the class with a clear round in 39.37 seconds. This was the pair’s second WEF Challenge Cup win this season; Ward also won the class during WEF 5 with HH Azur.

Second place went to the early leaders in the jump-off, Shane Sweetnam (IRL) and Spy Coast Farm LLC’s Chaqui Z, who went first and stopped the timers in 40.48 seconds. The WEF 7 five-star grand prix winners, Danielle Goldstein (ISR) and Lizziemary, owned by The Golden Group and Danielle Goldstein, were third in 40.68 seconds.

Rob Carey Pilots First Watch to Perfect Products USHJA Hunter 3’ Championship

Thursday’s competition featured an impressive championship win by Rob Carey, of Bolton, ON, Canada, and First Watch, owned by Barbara Mitchell, in the Perfect Products USHJA Hunter 3’ division. The pair mastered the course set in ring 11 and prevailed with three firsts and a third over fences, with a second in the under saddle.

“He is the nicest hunter I have ever ridden,” said Carey. “Everything about him is absolutely fantastic.”

Equestrian Sport Productions | 561-793-JUMP | news@equestriansport.com | www.PBIEC.com

McLain Ward Strikes Again in $132k Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 7 CSI 5*

McLain Ward and Hija van Strokapelleken. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL — February 22, 2018 — The 2017 FEI World Cup Finals champion McLain Ward notched another big win during the 2018 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) on Thursday, February 22, by riding Hija van Strokapelleken to victory in the $132,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 7 at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL.

Ward won his second five-star Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup of the season on Thursday, after taking the top spot in week five’s class with HH Azur, his 2016 Olympic team silver medal mount.

Riding Hija van Strokapelleken, an 11-year-old BWP mare by Calido I x Azur de Paulstra owned by Evergate Stable LLC, Ward topped a class of 52 entries and 19 in the jump-off over an Anthony D’Ambrosio-designed course. They finished the short course in 35.20 seconds for the win.

Peter Pletcher and River Capture Green Hunter 3’3” Win

Peter Pletcher and River, owned by Shaw Johnson Price, kicked off week seven at the Winter Equestrian Festival in style with a championship win in the Green Hunter 3’3” division. The pair won a first in the under saddle and a first, second, and third over fences. Havens Schatt was awarded the reserve championship aboard Tyrion, owned by J T Farm, with a first, first, and fourth over fences and a fifth in the under saddle.

Equestrian Sport Productions | 561-793-JUMP | news@equestriansport.com | www.PBIEC.com

US Show Jumping Team Begins 2018 FEI Jumping Nations Cup Season at CSIO5* Ocala

Ocala, Fla. – The U.S. Show Jumping Team returns to action this week, taking on six countries in the Longines FEI Jumping Nations Cup™ USA on Sunday, February 18 at HITS Post Time Farm in Ocala, Fla. U.S. Show Jumping Chef d’Equipe Robert Ridland will lead the team of Lauren Hough and Ohlala, Laura Kraut and Confu, Beezie Madden and Darry Lou, and McLain Ward and HH Callas as they compete for a strong start in the North American standings. The U.S. Show Jumping Team will compete second in the order. Devin Ryan and Eddie Blue will serve as the reserve combination.

The U.S. Show Jumping team placed second in the 2017 FEI Nations Cup CSIO4* Ocala.

Hough and Ohlala had a strong start to the 2018 competition year, finishing in the top 10 in the FEI NetJets Grand Prix CSI4* at the Winter Equestrian Festival on Saturday.

Kraut and Confu placed second in the $220,000 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Wellington presented by Sovaro® at the Palm Beach Masters earlier this month.

Madden and Darry Lou last competed at the CP National Horse Show in Lexington, Ky., placing third in the $130,000 CP Grand Prix International Open Jumpers CSI4*.

Ward and HH Callas earned fifth-place finishes at the Palm Beach Masters in the $220,000 Longines FEI World Cup Jumping Wellington presented by Sovaro® and $35,000 Sovaro Palm Beach Masters Qualifier CSI3*.

Career Highlights:

  • Hough: Member of the silver-medal winning 2017 Longines FEI Nations Cup Jumping Final team, 2017 member of the first all-women’s FEI Nations Cup CSIO5* Dublin gold-medal winning team and recipient of the Aga Kahn Trophy, team and individual bronze medalist at the 2015 Toronto Pan American Games, and member of the 2000 Sydney Olympics U.S. Show Jumping Team
  • Kraut: Member of the silver-medal winning 2017 Longines FEI Nations Cup Jumping Final team, 2017 member of the first all-women’s FEI Nations Cup CSIO5* Dublin gold-medal winning team and recipient of the Aga Kahn Trophy, 2017 recipient of the “Prize of the Federal Minister of the Interior” award at CHIO Aachen, and two-time Olympian, including a team gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Games
  • Madden: Member of the silver-medal winning 2017 Longines FEI Nations Cup Jumping Final team, 2017 member of the first all-women’s FEI Nations Cup CSIO5* Dublin gold-medal winning team and recipient of the Aga Kahn Trophy, four-time Olympian, including team gold medals at the 2004 Athens and 2008 Beijing Games, and a team silver medal at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games
  • Ward: Member of the silver-medal winning 2017 Longines FEI Nations Cup Jumping Final team, first place at the 2017 Longines FEI World Cup Jumping Final, four-time Olympian, including team gold medals at the 2004 Athens and 2008 Beijing Games, and a team silver medal at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games

Competition begins Sunday, February 18, at 1 p.m. EST at HITS Post Time Farm in Ocala, Fla. The event will be streamed live on FEI TV.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

Paul O’Shea and Imerald van’t Voorhof Save Best for Last in $50k Equiline Grand Prix CSI 2*

Paul O’Shea and Imerald van’t Voorhof. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – February 11, 2018 – Wrapping up Sunday’s competition, Paul O’Shea (IRL) and Imerald van’t Voorhof won the $50,000 Equiline Grand Prix CSI 2*.

There were 43 entries in the $50,000 Equiline Grand Prix CSI 2*, and 11 of those went clear to the jump-off. The fastest in the second round was the last to go, Paul O’Shea (IRL) and Imerald van’t Voorhof, owned by Tequestrian Farms LLC. They left out strides across the course to finish in 36.84 seconds.

Second place went to fellow Irishman Conor Swail on GK Coco Chanel, owned by Vanessa Mannix, in 38.24 seconds. Rebecca Conway (USA) and Salitos 8, owned by HBC Sport Horses, were third in 38.55 seconds.

McLain Ward and Bellefleur PS Z Win Second Class of the Week

In their second victory of the week, McLain Ward and Bellefleur PS Z won the $70,000 Hollow Creek Farm 1.50m Classic CSI 5* over a field of 55 entries. There were 17 that advanced to the jump-off, and it was race for the nine double-clear rides. With the fastest time in the class of 35.93 seconds, Ward and Bellefleur PS Z graced the winner’s circle. The pair also won Friday’s $35,000 Bainbridge 1.45m Classic.

Second place went to Francisco Jose Mesquita Musa (BRA) on Catch Me Imperio Egipicio, owned by Daniel Aguiar Morelli, who stopped the timers in 37.09 seconds. Eve Jobs (USA) and her own Charleville were third in 38.19 seconds.

UHealth Junior Hunter 3’3” 16-17 Division Championship Goes to Erin Floyd aboard Cymplify

Week five came to a close on Sunday with a fantastic championship win by Erin Floyd from Austin, TX and Cymplify, owned by Don Stewart, in the UHealth Junior Hunter 3’3” 16-17 division. The duo, having only been paired together for a few short weeks, gathered enough points to best the class with a first, first, second, and third over fences.

“He basically feels like a rocking horse going around the ring,” said Floyd of the 11-year-old Hanoverian gelding. “I have only been showing him in the [Junior Hunter] 3’3”s for the past couple weeks, so I’m still getting used to him. He has been great throughout it all, even without getting in a perfect work routine.”

Equestrian Sport Productions | 561-793-JUMP | news@equestriansport.com | www.PBIEC.com

McLain Ward and Bellefleur PS Z Are Best in $35,000 Bainbridge 1.45m Classic CSI 5*

McLain Ward and Bellefleur PS Z. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – February 9, 2018 – Friday’s $35,000 Bainbridge 1.45m Classic CSI 5* marked the second major win in as many days for U.S. Olympic gold medalist McLain Ward, who captured the Friday victory at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) aboard Bellefleur PS Z.

The $35,000 Bainbridge 1.45m Classic had 54 entries contesting the speed track set by course designer Kelvin Bywater of Great Britain. Seventeen of those entries completed the course without fault, but none were faster than Ward, who was fresh off a win in Thursday’s $132,000 WEF Challenge Cup Round 5 aboard his 2017 FEI World Cup Final champion mount HH Azur. This time, Ward tripped the timers in 55.88 seconds riding Bellefleur PS Z, a nine-year-old Zangersheide mare owned by Ward’s godmother, Susan Heller, and Ward’s daughter, Lilly.

Andrew Kocher and Kahlua Victorious in $35,000 Equiline 1.45m Classic CSI 2*

In the $35,000 Equiline 1.45m Jumper Classic CSI 2*, Andrew Kocher (USA) was victorious riding Kahlua, owned by Top Line Sporthorse International LLC. They were fastest in an 18-horse jump-off from an original line-up of 83 entries with a time of 30.27 seconds.

Alonso Valdez Prado (PER) and his own Chichester 3 finished second with a time of 30.59 seconds. Third place went to Felipe Amaral (BRA) and Germanico T, owned by Roberta Romalho, who had a time of 31.05 seconds.

Baylee McKeever and Valor Win Washington International Horse Show Pony Equitation

Baylee McKeever and her mount, Valor, owned by Lee McKeever, claimed the blue in Friday’s Washington International Horse Show (WIHS) Pony Equitation class. The pair set a high bar to beat in ring 11 as they finished with a high score of 84.

Equestrian Sport Productions | 561-793-JUMP | news@equestriansport.com | www.PBIEC.com

McLain Ward and HH Azur Top $132,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 5

McLain Ward and HH Azur. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – February 8, 2018 – 2017 FEI World Cup Final winner McLain Ward (USA) piloted HH Azur to victory over nine fellow Olympians in the $132,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 5 on Thursday.

Ward and HH Azur, a 12-year-old Belgian Sport Horse mare by Thunder van de Zuuthoeve owned by Double H Farm and Francois Mathy, went second to last in the jump-off. HH Azur showed off her typical lofty jump, but was fast across the ground on a giant stride to set the winning time at 39.94 seconds.

Haylie Rolfe Claims Victory in Green Hunter 3’3” Division Aboard Queen Celeste

After taking home a WEF week 1 reserve championship in the Green Hunter 3’3” division, Haylie Rolfe and Queen Celeste, owned by Pony Lane Farm, returned for week 5 determined to capture another tri-color ribbon in the division. The pair prevailed as the Green Hunter 3’3” champion on Thursday with a third in the under saddle and a first, first, second, and second over fences.

Equestrian Sport Productions | 561-793-JUMP | news@equestriansport.com | www.PBIEC.com

First International Victory at 2018 Winter Equestrian Festival Goes to McLain Ward

McLain Ward and Hija van Strokapelleken. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – January 10, 2018 – The 2018 Winter Equestrian Festival started in fine form, kicking off the 12-week circuit of hunter, jumper, and equitation competition at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL. WEF continues through April 1, 2018, and offers more than $9 million in prize money.

There are two highlight events for week 1 of WEF, sponsored by Wellington Regional Medical Center. They include the $75,000 Battle of the Sexes, presented by Wellington Regional Medical Center, to start the “Saturday Night Lights” series on Saturday, January 13, at 7 a.m., and the $75,000 Rosenbaum PLLC Grand Prix, the first grand prix of the season, on Sunday, January 14, at 2 p.m.

Olympic team gold medalist McLain Ward won the opening class of the day, the Douglas Elliman Real Estate 1.45m Jumpers, in the International Arena over a speed course designed by Eric Hasbrouck (USA). He and Hija van Strokapelleken, an 11-year-old BWP mare by Calido I x Azur Depaulstra owned by Evergate Stable LLC, were fast and clear in a time of 69.938 seconds for victory.

Equestrian Sport Productions | 561-793-JUMP | news@equestriansport.com | www.PBIEC.com

McLain Ward’s Donation Extends Silver Oak Jumper Tournament’s Support for Omega Horse Rescue

McLain Ward and the late, great Sapphire won the 2009 CN $1 Million at Spruce Meadows. Photo by Bob Langrish.

Leave it to McLain Ward to be generous and thoughtful.  He is not only one of the greatest show jumping talents, but he is one of the greatest ambassadors of our sport. McLain donated championship coolers from some of his historic wins with Sapphire and other great horses from Castle Hill. Now you can bid to win one of these keepsakes from some of the greatest moments in American show jumping history with all funds going directly to the Omega Horse Rescue Fund.

The first treasure is the 2008 American Invitational championship cooler in the scarlet Budweiser colors, from his win with Sapphire.

Second is the impressive 2009 Farnam Platform USEF Horse of the Year finalist cooler, awarded to the great “Sara,” the mighty Sapphire. That year, McLain and the powerful Belgian Warmblood mare won the $1 million CN International Grand Prix at Spruce Meadows in Canada, the $250,000 FTI Grand Prix and World Cup Qualifier (Hampton Classic), the $400,000 FTI Finale Grand Prix CSI Five-Star (Winter Equestrian Festival) and the $100,000 Grand Prix of Devon.

These two coolers hold special historical significance. Sapphire, McLain’s beloved partner, passed away in 2014 and the American Invitational, first held in the old Tampa Stadium in 1973, has not been held since 2015. Now you can own a piece of history and help a great cause in the process. Click here to place your bid.

At August’s Silver Oak Show, thousands were raised for Omega Horse Rescue. Tony Grossman, a part owner of Sapphire, bid and won McLain and Sapphire’s American Invitational Cooler during the show.

Follow Silver Oak Jumper Tournament on Facebook where we will announce the auction winners. We will add more auctions for McLain’s historical coolers, so stay tuned to our Facebook page. We’ll announce the winning bids twice monthly.

silveroakjumpertournament.com

HH Carlos Z Leaves Equestrian Sport with a Win at WIHS CSI4*-W

McLain Ward and HH Carlos Z. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

WASHINGTON, Oct. 27, 2017 — It was a bittersweet night for show jumping fans as they saw one of the sport’s best in his final competition. HH Carlos Z went out on top with victory in the $50,000 International Jumper Speed Final, presented by the Man O’ War Project in partnership with Columbia University Medical Center. As HH Carlos Z and McLain Ward (USA) entered the arena for their victory gallop, it was announced that “Carlos” would retire.

Riding out of the 11th spot in the order in the faults converted (Table C) format class, Ward and HH Carlos Z, a 15-year-old Zangersheide gelding by Chellano Z owned by Double H Farm, finished in 57.77 seconds.

“I love the format of this class,” Ward said. “It’s a 1.50m, but a Table C, so people can have a fence down and still be in the mix. I think it makes it a much more exciting class for the spectators.”

Devin Ryan (USA) and Eddie Blue, owned by LL Show Jumpers LLC, were second in 58.50 seconds, while Amanda Derbyshire (GBR) and Gochman Sport Horse LLC’s Lady Maria BH placed third with a time of 59.05 seconds.

Following the class, Ward stated, “That’s it. He’s done. He’s given more than he had to give. He’s been an incredible horse, an incredible winner. He’s won everything from five-star grand prixs and jumped Nations’ Cups to being a day in and day out winner.

“I wanted the horse to win a good class to finish on,” he continued. “I didn’t want him to end poorly. This is a nice moment, and I’m very, very grateful to Mr. Harrison and Double H Farm to have the opportunity to ride this horse and also for the opportunity to care for him and retire him in the way he deserves.”

Ward concluded, “He’s always been a winner when it counted. He did it again. It’s a little bittersweet, but he doesn’t owe us anything.”

The Jump for TAPS Challenge raised $16,000 on Friday night, with every clear over the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS) fence raising money for the WIHS Official Military Charity.

Aaron Vale Clears 6’7” to Win $25,000 International Jumper Puissance

Aaron Vale (USA) and Finou earned their second consecutive WIHS Puissance victory on Friday night, this year clearing 6’7” to take the win in the $25,000 International Jumper Puissance, presented by The Boeing Company.

“It’s the horse,” said Vale on the secret to tying with McLain Ward in 2016 and winning outright in 2017. “This horse actually has quite a bit of talent for this. It feels like he could actually jump a very big wall if the class played out that way. He’s very comfortable at it, and it’d be exciting to try something pretty high with him if it ever happened. My personal best is 7’2 ¼”. If I made higher it than that – that’s pretty high to me.”

The Puissance wall began set at a height of 1.80m (5’11”) and gradually progressed to the 6’7” height through four rounds of competition. Four horse and rider combinations all successfully contested the first round, with Paulo Santana (ESA) being the first eliminated after failing to clear the wall in the second round with his mount Una du Keske Z, owned by Santana Stables LLC.

Finishing in third were Kama Godek (USA) and her own De Grande. Following Godek and De Grande’s elimination in the third round, only Vale and Hunter Holloway (USA) aboard Cassevel, owned by Hays Investment Corp., remained, and Holloway elected to save the gelding jumps for another day, opting out of the fourth round. Vale could have chosen to also call it a night and accept a tie, but much to the enjoyment of the crowd, he chose to return for a fourth and final round.

“We’ve got a big crowd here today, number one,” Vale said on his reasoning for choosing to return. “Number two, my horse actually is a very fresh horse, so he needs work. He’ll be jumping the grand prix tomorrow night. Last year he jumped five rounds, and then he jumped clean in the grand prix, so four rounds might not have been enough work for him! Maybe I should have come back one more time!”

Emma Kurtz Rides Dedication to Grand Junior Hunter Championship

The 2017 WIHS Grand Junior Hunter Championship and the Ides of March Perpetual Trophy, donated by Linda Lee and Lee Reynolds and given to the grand championship winner, were presented to Emma Kurtz of Hudson, OH and Dedication, owned by Dr. Betsee Parker.

On their way to winning the grand championship, Kurtz and Dedication, a 12-year-old bay Holsteiner gelding (by Casado), earned two firsts and a third over fences to take the Large Junior 16-17 Hunter Championship and the Chance Step Perpetual Trophy, presented by Chansonette Farms and donated by Brooke Carmichael-McMurray-Fowler and Pam Carmichael Keenan. The division reserve championship went to MTM Hands Down, ridden by Annabel Revers of Weston, MA and owned by Beechwood Stables LLC.

At the 2016 WIHS, Kurtz rode Wisdom, owned by Rivers Edge, to the Small Junior 15 & Under Hunter championship, but this year marked her first time claiming the WIHS Grand Junior Hunter Championship.

“It’s amazing [to win here],” said Kurtz of Hudson, OH. “For [Dedication] to come in here and be bombproof is awesome.”

Kurtz, 16, acquired the ride on Dedication in mid-2016 and has made winning on the gelding look easy ever since, but the 17-hand gelding has his quirks.

“He’s a little funny about his leads. We never practice lead changes at home, so that he doesn’t get nervous for them,” Kurtz explained “He’s also particular about the way you hold your body over the jump. You have to give him enough time off the ground, but bend over enough the he doesn’t hit it behind. It’s a formula for sure.

“But he jumps amazing. He’s beautiful, he’s a good mover – he’s the whole package,” said Kurtz. “We love him.”

In the Small Junior 16-17 Hunters, sponsored by the Wasserman Foundation, the championship went to Annabel Revers and Kingpin, owned by Beechwood Stables. The reserve championship was awarded to Haley Redifer of Barboursville, VA and her own Linus.

The Small Junior 15 & Under Hunter division championship, also sponsored by the Wasserman Foundation, went to Stella Wasserman of Beverly Hills, CA riding Boss, owned by Laura Wasserman. Finishing in reserve were Sophie Gochman and Dominik, owned by Gochman Sport Horse LLC.

In the Large Junior 15 & Under Hunter division, it was Augusta Iwasaki of Calabasas, CA who claimed the championship aboard Small Affair, owned by Lyn Pedersen. For her performances and display of horsemanship and sportsmanship, Iwasaki was selected as the Best Child Rider on a Horse, sponsored by Gotham North, and she was presented with the DiVecchia Perpetual Trophy, donated by Mr. and Mrs. Mark DiVecchia, for the win.

“It’s really exciting,” said Iwasaki, 13, of her win. “It’s very exciting to come into the city. I think it’s just so different and so cool because when do you get to drive into a city and just show on the streets?”

Taking the reserve championship in the Large Junior 15 & Under Hunters were Brooke Morin of Calabasas, CA and Seaside, owned by Strasburg Morin Inc.

The Lindsay Maxwell Charitable Fund WIHS Equitation Finals also kicked off on Friday, and Ava Stearns currently sits at the top of the leaderboard with a score of 89 in the hunter phase. Sam Walker, Alexandra Worthington, Annabel Revers, Haley Redifer, and McKayla Langmeier round out the top six riders, consecutively, heading into the jumper phase. The hunter and jumper scores will then be averaged to determine the top ten riders who will then participate in the final work-off phase.

www.wihs.org

Central Park Horse Show Welcomes Back US Open $50k Puissance on Sept. 21

McLain Ward and ZZ Top VH Schaarbroek Z clear the Puissance wall at the 2016 Rolex Central Park Horse Show. Photo Credit ©MegBanks/RCPHS.

New York, NY – September 14, 2017 – The U.S. Open $50,000 Spy Coast Farm Puissance will return to Central Park for the second consecutive year, showcasing the courage and finessed communication between participating horse and rider combinations. Always a spectator favorite, the U.S. Open $50,000 Spy Coast Farm Puissance will begin after the conclusion of the U.S. Open $40,000 CSX FEI Speed on Thursday, September 21, and is set to start at 9:00 p.m. in Wollman Rink.

The competition will begin with a traditionally decorated brick-wall obstacle set at 4 feet, 6 inches high. As combinations clear the jump, the wall is raised for reach round and the thrilling competition continues until only a single combination remains. Who will clear the towering wall as it grows taller and taller? Join us and find out!

Last year’s competition saw a tie for McLain Ward riding Evergate Stables’ ZZ Top VH Schaarbroek Z and Andrew Kocher aboard Eagle Valley Partners’ C’Havinia. Seven entries started over the imposing Puissance wall and the competition continued up through four more rounds as Ward and Kocher jumped head-to-head at the final height of 6’9″. Neither rider was able to clear the wall at that height, leaving them tied for the win.

Ward entered 2016’s competition at the last minute, though he’s no stranger to Puissance competitions. In fact, he has won many (including seven times at the Washington International Horse Show), and noted that the highest he has cleared is a staggering 7’3″.

“I also attempted to jump an 8-foot wall six different times, but never cleared it. I have no intention of doing that again!” Ward laughed. “2016 was interesting though, because I thought in the second to last round my horse jumped it better, and I thought in the last round Andy’s horse jumped it better. So it was pretty even at the end. I thought it was a nice, exciting class with horses jumping very well.”

Kocher was a first-year competitor at the RCPHS last year, and he had only attempted the Puissance a few times prior. “That mare (C’Havinia) has never done anything like that,” he said. “I have done the Puissance three times at the Washington International Horse Show, and the first time was really bad, but this time I have been practicing for a few weeks. I didn’t have a big enough wall, so I put some hay bales in there to stack it up. It was fun,” he laughed.

Kocher is excited to return to this year’s competition, and commented, “I really like the Central Park Horse Show. It’s just really exciting because it’s right in the middle of New York City, and they have a big crowd. I love the Puissance and I love the high jump. It’s one of my favorite classes and I wish they had it at more horse shows.” He added, “These classes really highlight everything we are supposed to be. We are supposed to be fearless and tough, we have to go out there and go for it.”

Regarding the addition of the Puissance competition to the Rolex Central Park Horse Show in 2016, Ward added, “It is a fun way to end the evening. It gets everybody into the competition, and I think the draw of this class is that it is something that everybody can easily understand-how high can you jump?”

For more information on the Rolex Central Park Horse Show, please visit www.centralparkhorseshow.com.

A portion of ticket sales will benefit a lengthy list of New York, as well as equestrian based, charities.

Seating is limited and the demand for tickets is expected to be high. All seats have unobstructed views. All ticket sales are final, non-transferable; no refunds and no exchanges. Gates open 30 minutes prior to start of event.

For Reserved Seating questions, please contact 1-844-319-CPHS (2747) or email tickets@img.com.

For VIP Table Sales, please contact vip@centralparkhorseshow.com.