Tag Archives: Samuel Parot

Chile’s Samuel Parot Scores at Sacramento

Samuel Parot and Atlantis. (FEI/Erin Gilmore)

Rancho Murieta (USA), 27 September 2015 – Last to go in a six-man jump off proved pivotal when Samuel Parot (CHI) delivered the fastest double clear in the $100,000 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping at the Sacramento International Horse Show on Saturday night. Aboard 12-year-old bay gelding Atlantis (Andiamo-Royal Bravour L), Parot shaved over half a second off the USA’s Quentin Judge’s target time of 37.55 seconds to finish at the head of the 24-starter field.

“The jump off was super,” Parot said after the win. “The design was perfect. I had the opportunity to see all the rider make the mistakes, but my horse is very fast so it was unnecessary to leave out the stride.”

Before Parot’s round, both Richard Spooner (USA) and Karl Cook (USA) attempted to leave out a stride to the final fence, resulting in knockdowns for both. After watching the eight strides lead to mistakes on the Alan Wade-designed course, commentator and 1976 Olympian Buddy Brown said that if he were to attempt the course, he would put in the nine strides without having to sacrifice speed. Just as the words left his mouth, Parot did exactly that, proving that Brown’s approach was the winning one.

California love

“There is something I would like to say about Samuel because I know him very well because he shows a lot in France,” said Eric Navet (FRA), third place finisher in the class. “Before I moved here to California, I met Samuel at many of the shows in France. He’s a great guy, always happy, always friendly, and he’s a very, very efficient and fast rider so I’m not surprised that he got the win tonight.”

Parot’s partnership with his horse only began in May, ahead of this year’s Pan American Games. A broken collarbone at the beginning of the Spruce Meadows Summer Series sidelined the 50-year-old rider for a few weeks, but he was back to his winning ways shortly after. On his first trip to California this week, he won the $35,000 Open Stake World Cup qualifier with Atlantis, giving a strong indication that the pair were on top form for the big class on Saturday evening.

“Today (Atlantis) jumped super,” Parot said. “This is our seventh show together. He likes a very soft ride. He’s very sensitive, very careful. I’m very happy. I love California. It’s my first time that I’ve come here.”

Next on the schedule for Parot and Atlantis is a stop in Los Angeles for the Longines Masters event before moving onto Del Mar, Calgary, and Las Vegas to compete in the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League qualifiers. He plans to head back to Wellington, his home base, by the end of the year.

Indoor challenge

The evening class, inside and under lights, proved to be quite an adjustment for many of the horses, especially after the long summer season in large, outdoor arenas. The Irish-bred stallion Flexible, a crowd favorite and winner of the first West Coast North American League event at Thunderbird, was first in the order of go with Rich Fellers but his round resulted in uncharacteristic rails.

“The horses are trying to adjust to the lights,” Brown commented, after a few veteran riders also picked up faults. Additionally, the well-prepared course challenged riders throughout with its complex questions, demanding the highest level of precision from all starters.

“The principles are basically the same,” Wade said about designing tracks indoors as opposed to the large, outdoor venues. “You try and build them over the couple of days, and this was the biggest test. And tonight, the bigger the class, the more fair and open the distances were. The other night, I felt I had to test a bit more control because we were at 1.45 (meters). And when we got the bigger fences, it was more scope tests, and I was just trying to be fair to everyone.”

Many riders will continue to Los Angeles from Sacramento, where they will compete in another indoor venue and hope that they and their horses have gained valuable experience from the first indoor event of the fall season.

Results: http://eventcontent.hippoonline.de/1074/sta_erg/03_ergENG.htm?style=longines.

Facts and Figures

Six horses went clear in the first round, one picked up a single time fault, and one collected two faults. Two horses were eliminated.

The course designer was Alan Wade.

It was an all-male jump-off, with four Americans, one Chilean, and one Frenchman.

The first round was contested over 13 obstacles with 16 jumping efforts. The jump-off round had seven obstacles with eight efforts. The height was set at 1.60 meters.


Danielle Ballard, marketing and event manager for West Palms Events: “We are greatly honored to be a part of the North American League, and we really appreciate Longines and the FEI’s support in creating a very, very well-rounded look at show jumping. The marketing around it is very important to make sure people see the sport of show jumping so we are very thankful to be a part of the North American League and very honored.”

Quentin Judge (USA): “I think for a rider you have to know your horse well and know that your horse is going to be able to cope with it. I’m lucky to have a really seasoned, fantastic horse that I can rely on in just about any venue and I think this was a great venue for him and a great test.”

Eric Navet (FRA): “I’m very lucky to have (Jonkheer Z) to show because he has a lot of experience, and he has been doing very, very good things with Karl (Cook). He’s been shown in two World Cup Finals, and now we are getting Karl prepared with that chestnut mare that he showed today. She was very good. We look for the future for Karl, so in these kinds of grand prix, each rider is only allowed to show just one horse so that’s why I showed Jonkheer. He’s a little bit of the past for Karl, and Karl shows Temba, which is the future for him.”

Sacramento International Horse Show

The Sacramento International Horse Show is one of Northern California’s premier equestrian events and takes place at the Murieta Equestrian Center in Rancho Murieta, California. The facility features four indoor arenas, 13 outdoor arenas, shopping, dining, bleacher seating to accommodate 3,000 spectators and VIP seating/dining areas. The show attracts sell-out crowds for its grand prix classes and special events, and riders on the international circuit regularly attend the Sacramento International on their way to qualifying for the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final.

Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League

A total of 14 athletes from the new North American League will qualify for next year’s prestigious Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final, which will take place in Gothenburg (SWE) on 23-28 March 2016.

The top seven athletes from the East Coast US, top three from West Coast US and the two best-placed athletes from Canada and Mexico will qualify for the Final, alongside winners of the 13 other leagues from around the world.

Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League

The new North American league was launched by Beezie Madden, the most decorated US female equestrian athlete of all time, American Gold Cup winner and FEI Solidarity Ambassador Jessica Springsteen, and Hannah Selleck, team and individual gold medalist at young rider level and one of the sport’s up-and-coming stars. The full launch release is available here: https://goo.gl/kCIsyW.

The North American League boasts a minimum of US $2.4 million prize money across the series, and offers the best Jumping athletes from North America and around the world the chance to qualify for the jackpot of more than US $1.4 million (€1.3 million) on offer annually at the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final.

By Esther Hahn

FEI Media Contacts:

Ruth Grundy
Manager Press Relations
+41 78 750 61 45

Shannon Gibbons
Manager Press Relations
+41 78 750 61 46

Quentin Judge and HH Whisky Rolaye Top $50,000 Aon Cup at Spruce Meadows

Quentin Judge and HH Whisky Royale. Photos © Spruce Meadows Media Services.

Samuel Parot Victorious in $34,000 ATCO Energy Solutions Cup; Andres Rodriguez Wins $34,000 PwC Cup

Calgary, AB, Canada – July 1, 2015 – The 2015 ‘North American’ Tournament CSI 5* at Spruce Meadows featured an impressive line-up of show jumping on Wednesday. USA’s Quentin Judge and HH Whisky Royale began the day with a win in the $50,000 Aon Cup 1.55m, Chile’s Samuel Parot and Couscous van Orti jumped to victory in the $34,000 ATCO Energy Solutions Cup 1.50m, and Venezuela’s Andres Rodriguez and Fifty Fifty 111 were victorious in the $34,000 PwC Cup 1.50m.

Continuing through Sunday, July 5, the ‘North American’ Tournament boasts $1.3 million in prize money across 14 FEI events throughout the week. Highlights include the $400,000 ATCO Power Queen Elizabeth II Cup on Saturday and the $210,000 Cenovus Energy Classic Derby on Sunday.

Spain’s Santiago Varela is the course designer in the International Ring for ‘North American’ competition. Varela began Wednesday morning with 55 entries in the $50,000 Aon Cup 1.55m and a win for Quentin Judge aboard Double H Farm’s HH Whisky Royale, a ten-year-old Zangersheide gelding (Wonderful van’t Beugelhof x Kannan). The pair topped a ten-horse jump-off with the fastest of four double clear rounds.

Reed Kessler (USA) was the first rider to clear the short course, finishing in a time of 42.36 seconds riding Kessler Show Stables’ Cylana to eventually place third. Meagan Nusz (USA) jumped the fourth place round with Amalaya Investments’ SRI Aladdin in 42.85 seconds. Judge then jumped into the lead aboard HH Whisky Royale in 41.41 seconds. Last to go, Hardin Towell (USA) took the second place prize with his time of 41.69 seconds riding Jennifer Gates’ Emilie de Diamant AS.

Wednesday’s win marks the second time that Judge has won the first competition in a CSI 5* tournament this summer. He also topped the first 1.55m competition of June’s ‘National’ Tournament aboard HH Copin van de Broy.

“I have been really lucky to win the first classes at these two tournaments,” Judge noted. “My horses really like this ring, so I just try to make a good plan for each week and put the right horses in the right competitions.”

Wednesday’s win also marks a significant moment in Judge’s partnership with HH Whisky Royale, who he has been riding for several years.

“This is definitely his biggest win,” Judge remarked. “This is only his third 1.55m. He was really good the first week here, finishing clear and with four faults in two 1.55m competitions. Now after two weeks off, he came right in and jumped this. It is really special for us because this is a horse that we have had a long time. He is a horse that maybe some people did not believe in when he was young because he was so big and so gawky, but he has really come a long way.”

Speaking of Whisky Royale’s powerful jumping style, Judge noted, “He is a huge horse and he has such a big stride. He kicks really hard over the jumps and it definitely took me a while to get used to that, but he gives you a very good feeling as a rider because you know you will pretty much never have a back rail down.”

HH Whisky Royale will jump again in Thursday’s $85,000 Progress Energy Cup 1.55m as Judge looks to continue his success throughout the ‘North American’ Tournament.

Parot Earns First Win at Spruce Meadows

Continuing Wednesday’s competition at Spruce Meadows, the $34,000 ATCO Energy Solutions Cup saw 38 entries compete over a 1.50m speed track set by course designer Santiago Varela. In his first trip ever to Spruce Meadows, Chile’s Samuel Parot jumped to victory aboard his own Couscous van Orti, a 13-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding (Nabab de Reve x Cash).

Samuel Parot and Couscous van Orti
Samuel Parot and Couscous van Orti

The course saw twelve clear rounds in total, and the times got faster and faster. Shane Sweetnam (IRL) jumped an early clear round in 66.10 seconds with Sweet Oak Farm’s Easy Contact Humlan to eventually place third. Several rounds later, Conor Swail (IRL) upped the pace in 65.62 seconds with Ilan Ferder’s Viva Colombia to ultimately finish second. Richard Spooner (USA) was fast and clear with Show Jumping Syndication Intl’s Cristallo in 66.39 seconds to jump into fourth. Quentin Judge and Double H Farm’s HH Quator had a great round in 68.51 seconds to take fifth place. Parot immediately followed, speeding through the timers in 63.92 seconds for the win aboard Couscous van Orti.

“This is the first time I have come to Spruce Meadows and my first victory here,” Parot smiled after his win. “The first week (of the Summer Series) I had third place, fourth place, fifth place, and then I broke my clavicle on the last day of the first week. The second week I tried to jump, but it was not possible, the pain was too much. I waited two weeks and began again last week. It still hurt a little bit last week, but this week it was better.”

“It is super to win here. This is an unbelievable place – the people, the organization. I think Spruce Meadows and Aachen are the most important shows in the world and a win here is important,” Parot continued. “Here, you have the top riders in the world. A win is a win, but here it is very important.”

Parot is based in Wellington, FL for six months of the year and normally spends the rest of the year competing in Europe, but with the Pan American Games coming up in Toronto in July, he chose to make his first trip to Calgary. Parot has been named to the team that will compete for Chile in the Games, and Couscous is a horse that he bought as a possible mount just one month ago. Belgium’s Pieter Devos previously rode the gelding to great success and Parot looks forward to getting to know his new mount further in the coming weeks.

Rodriguez Races to Win PwC Cup

The final competition on Wednesday was the $34,000 PwC Cup 1.50m with a speedy win for Andres Rodriguez (VAN) and Arao Enterprises LLC’s Fifty Fifty 111. Juan Pablo Gaspar Albanez (MEX) and Felipe Gaspar’s Puertas So What were first to go and laid down a blazing fast time of 66.215 seconds that held on through 33 competitors for second place. Halfway through the order, Rodriguez and Fifty Fifty 111 stole the show with their winning time of 66.096 seconds.

Andres Rodriguez and Fifty Fifty 111
Andres Rodriguez and Fifty Fifty 111

Rodriguez and the ten-year-old Belgian Warmblood mare (Action Breaker x Major de la Cour) also won on opening day of week one’s ‘National’ Tournament and the rider was thrilled with his horse’s consistency.

“It is amazing (to win again),” Rodriguez smiled. “This is the first day of one of the biggest competitions of the summer and it is amazing to win the same competition that I won four weeks ago. This is the third time the mare has been out this summer, and she has won two competitions and she also got a good ribbon in the derby, so it feels great.”

“She is getting a bit more accurate,” Rodriguez said of Fifty’s development this summer. “To have a horse that can come in the ring and win two out of three times, it is a great horse.”

“There were a lot of great horses in that competition today,” Rodriguez continued. “We had HH Carlos Z, we had Rosana du Park, some amazing horses and riders. When Juan Pablo Gaspar went in the beginning, I thought that he had won the class. We needed to take some risks to try to get his time. Then after I saw McLain (Ward) and Eric (Lamaze) going after Juan Pablo, and not being able to catch him, I knew we had to go all in. I missed one distance to the coin jump. I was thinking of doing eight strides, but I landed on the outside, so I did nine strides. Then I was trying towards the end to get the time back. I got a little bit of a flying distance to the one oxer at the end. That was a big risk, but I think that is where I got the time.”

“I knew coming in that if someone beat Juan Pablo, it was not going to be by much,” Rodriguez said of his narrow margin of victory. “He did not leave much in the ring. He did all of the distances the right way and he was in the right rhythm. It is very impressive for a kid to come here and just lay something down like that. For him to go first, not really knowing how the class was going to turn up, and put in a round like that was really good.”

Santiago Varela set some excellent tracks on Wednesday that were not only great for the horses and riders, but also great for the crowds that turned up to watch the competition while celebrating Canada Day.

“The courses today were really good,” Rodriguez acknowledged. “I thought the 1.55m was an amazing course. There were some big jumps, but everything rode very smooth, and I think both 1.50m courses were very good. I think the crowd liked it. The rounds were fast, and people were really trying. That is what a course designer is always trying to get: they want to entertain the crowd and get a good competition, and I think he achieved that today.”

The ‘North American’ Tournament continues on Thursday featuring the $85,000 Progress Energy Cup 1.55m, $34,000 Sun Life Financial ‘Reach for the Sun’ 1.50m, and the $34,000 Suncast Cup 1.50m.

For a complete tournament schedule and full results, please visit www.sprucemeadows.com.

Lauren Fisher for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.

Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.

Shane Sweetnam and Samuel Parot Top $5,000 CSIO Welcome Stake Classes at FTI WEF

Shane Sweetnam and Solerina.  Photos © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – February 26 2014 – The 2014 FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival (FTI WEF) kicked off its week of CSIO competition on Wednesday with a $5,000 Welcome Stake, held as two classes, with afternoon and evening sessions. The day session saw a win for Ireland’s Shane Sweetnam aboard Solerina. The night session was won by Chile’s Samuel Parot and Al Calypso.

FTI WEF week eight, sponsored by G&C Farm, runs February 26 – March 2, 2014, featuring CSIO 4* show jumping and a full schedule of ‘AA’ hunter and equitation events. The week will highlight the $75,000 Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup, presented by G&C Farm, on Friday, February 28. There are Hollow Creek Farm classes for Children’s, Juniors and Young Riders throughout the week as well as three separate FEI Nations’ Cup team events on Saturday, March 1. Many other exciting jumper classes will be featured throughout the week.

Thursday hosts the $34,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 8, and Friday will feature a $10,000 G&C Farm Speed Stake. The $34,000 G&C Farm 1.45m and $25,000 Nutrena Jumper Classic will be held on Saturday. The week will conclude on Sunday with a $25,000 Suncast 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic as well as the $150,000 CSIO 4* Grand Prix, presented by Wellington Equestrian Realty.

Steve Stephens (USA) is the course designer in the International Arena for week eight competition. In the $5,000 Welcome Stake day session, Stephens saw 51 entries over his speed track with 11 clear rounds. Shane Sweetnam and his speedy mount Solerina, owned by Sweet Oak and Spy Coast Farms, completed the fastest time of the class in 63.54 seconds for the win.

Mexico’s Eugenio Garza finished second with El Milagro’s Providence 3 in 65.88 seconds. Ireland’s Kevin Babington and Shorapur placed third in 70.13 seconds, and USA’s Christine McCrea and Candy Tribble’s Romantovich Take One finished fourth in 70.92 seconds.

She jumped good,” Sweetnam said of his winning round. “She is naturally quick. I didn’t really go full speed with her; I just did all of the turns. She is good at turns, and I think that was the difference.”

“A lot of people are just schooling for the week,” Sweetnam noted. “It’s not a big money class, but it’s still the opening class of CSIO week, so I knew if I could do my turns then I would be up there. That is what I planned to do, and that is what I did.”

Solerina, a 15-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare by Cruising x Diamond Lad, is a fiery little chestnut, but Sweetnam explained that he has figured out how to work with her personality.

“She is still high maintenance, but I have gotten to know her and she has gotten to know me and I know her quirks now,” he detailed. “She is very funny about the (Jumbotron) TV screen; that is her big thing. She has matured about it, but she is still kind of nervous about it. Today in the practice ring she was nervous; you could tell that she was nervous. She’s a much better horse when there is no TV.”

To help with Solerina’s nerves about the Jumbotron, the mare has a TV screen that she watches in her stall at horse shows.

“It helps a little, but I’m not sure how much,” Sweetnam admitted. “She’s not as dramatic about it as she was before, but as soon as she sees a big TV it is still a factor. At shows she always has a TV in her stall. Spruce Meadows is what she’s watching at the moment. It used to be some cowboy guy before. I better get the WEF video; maybe that will work better.”

Solerina will show in tomorrow’s $34,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup class and again on Saturday. Sweetnam’s mount Eregast van’t Kiezelhof will step up to do the bigger classes this week.

Continuing the day, forty-four entries showed in the night session of Wednesday’s $5,000 Welcome Stake. The class saw just three clear rounds around the course with the fastest time of 65.75 seconds for Chile’s Samuel Parot and Al Calypso.

Germany’s David Will finished second aboard Sevil Sabanci’s Con Chilli in 70.02 seconds. Also from Chile, Carlos Milthaler and Santana Stables LLC’s Player de Brocelia finished third in 70.17 seconds.

Samuel Parot and Al Calypso
Samuel Parot and Al Calypso

Samuel Parot has had a great partnership with Al Calypso, his 12-year-old Hanoverian gelding by Askari x Calypso II. The pair has traveled the world together, competing on the Chilean teams at the 2011 Pan American Games in Guadalajara and the 2012 Olympic Games in London. Parot briefly sold the horse to teammate Jorge Matte, but got him back two weeks ago and now plans to keep him. After his win, Parot spoke about the horse and his style and personality.

“He likes you to ride very soft and comfortable,” Parot noted. “If you make too much pressure, he gets very strong and he is not happy. If you ride soft, he is happy. He is very sensitive.”

“He is very expressive,” the rider added. “It is unbelievable. He knows you. He is very smart, and we know each other well. You go to the barn and walk down the middle and he will come to you. He is a top horse.”

Parot got to see Carlos Milthaler set the pace with the first clear round of the night and knew where he could be faster.

“I saw my partner from Chile go, and he went very fast. I made one turn that he did not make before the water, and I think that is where I made the time better,” Parot explained, adding that he had the advantage of a very seasoned horse. “He has no problem under the lights. He was perfect; he has the experience.”

Al Calypso will show again in tomorrow’s $34,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 8 and will then compete in Sunday’s $150,000 CSI 4* Grand Prix, presented by Wellington Equestrian Realty.

Parot, who has been competing in Wellington for 14 years and has been at the FTI WEF every year since 2008, is excited to be a part of Chile’s team for Friday night’s $75,000 Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup, presented by G&C Farm. This is the first time that the country has had a team for this class in Wellington. Parot will ride alongside teammates Carlos Milthaler and Jorge Matte showing his horse William Wallace.

“This is the first time (and) we will have only three riders, but it is a nice experience here,” Parot stated. “It is very difficult competition. The competition at this show is one of the most important in the world, and it is good for Chile to come here. Chile is very far south, and it is not easy to come here with the horses.”

Competition began on Wednesday with an $8,000 G&C Farm 1.45m speed class with a win for Laura Chapot (USA) aboard Mary Chapot’s ISHD Dual Star. The Hollow Creek Farm Children’s, Junior and Young Rider Welcome speed classes followed. The $1,500 Hollow Creek Farm Young Rider Welcome class was first to go with a win for Manuel Fernandez Hache (DOM) riding Maribel H, owned by Aristides Fernandez Zucco. The $1,000 Hollow Creek Farm Junior Welcome class was held next with a win for Emanuel Andrade (VEN) riding AD Vangleys, owned by Flavio Bernandes. Constanza Romer (VEN) then jumped to victory in the Hollow Creek Farm Children’s Welcome class aboard Frederick Romer’s SF Hechicero.

Week eight will continue on Thursday with the $34,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 8 in the International Arena. The Hollow Creek Farm Children’s, Junior, and Young Riders will also compete in their jump-off Classics for the week. For full results, please visit www.showgroundslive.com.

About FTI Consulting, Inc.

FTI Consulting, Inc. is a global business advisory firm dedicated to helping organizations protect and enhance enterprise value in an increasingly complex legal, regulatory and economic environment. With more than 4,000 employees located in 24 countries, FTI Consulting professionals work closely with clients to anticipate, illuminate and overcome complex business challenges in areas such as investigations, litigation, mergers and acquisitions, regulatory issues, reputation management, strategic communications and restructuring. The company generated $1.58 billion in revenues during fiscal year 2012. For more information, visit www.fticonsulting.com.

About the FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival

The 2014 FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival has 12 weeks of top competition running from January 8 through March 30. The FTI WEF is run by Equestrian Sport Productions, LLC, and Wellington Equestrian Partners and held at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center. All 12 shows are “AA” rated and Jumper Rated 6, and more than $7 million in prize money will be awarded.

Please visit www.equestriansport.com or call 561-793-5867 for more information.

Lauren Fisher for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.

Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
Equestrian Public Relations

Atlanta Summer Classics Finale Packed with Big Awards

Samuel Parot and Costa Real Win Outback Steakhouse Gamblers Choice; Taylor Ann Adams Named Grand Puba Junior Champion; Wilhelm Genn and Happy Z Triumphant in $35,000 Outback Steakhouse Grand Prix

Wilhelm Genn & Happy Z. All photos © Flashpoint Photography

Conyers, GA — June 26, 2011 — The Atlanta Summer Classics wrapped up competition at the Georgia International Horse Park, awarding nearly $300,000 in prize money and raising thousands for local charities over the two week run. “We’ve had some of the best riders in our sport joining us; it’s been a remarkable series and I couldn’t be happier,” Bob Bell, President of Classic Company, said.

Starting off the finale week was a couple of highly anticipated clinics on Tuesday, beginning with a member of the $1 million dollar club, famed Grand Prix pro Wilhelm Genn, sharing his secrets of mastering water jumps. Sponsored by the United States Hunter Jumper Association, Genn used the covered arena to set a mini course of six jumps, two with water hazards and utilized approximately ten horses to demonstrate proper and improper approaches. Speaking over a wireless microphone to riders and trainers for nearly two hours, Genn answered questions and provided helpful tips to “boost a horse’s confidence” when confronting water obstacles. Following was a very informative Pony Model Clinic with one of the foremost experts in this area, Bibby Farmer from Ocala, FL. She carefully explained to the young exhibitors not only what judges look for, but how to get the best from their ponies. Covering all the essentials from the pony’s stance to where the exhibitors’ attentions need to be when a judge is walking about them. On Thursday evening it was the judges who found themselves in the proverbial hot seats for an open forum called Just Ask the Judges, sponsored by Practical Horseman magazine. Three of the most respected names in judging, Betty Oare, Scott Fitton, and Barry Lobel, fielded questions from exhibitors and provided insight on scoring in the Hunter/Jumper disciplines. The panel also shared several of what they referred to as Judges’ Pet Peeves, which included overly short releases, especially in the Equitation divisions. All the experts agreed a restrictive release interferes with the horse’s jumping style, but pointed out that that doesn’t imply they want to see the opposite extreme with the infamous overdone throwing of the arms release.  Another peeve they described was the exaggerated tour taken upon entering the ring, stating that if a rider needs to show their mount the ring and/or the fences then the rider appears unprepared. Questions were asked on a wide range of subjects and guests left the forum armed with a lot of valuable information. “The clinics were a giant success and we [Classic Company] will be introducing more of these throughout out show schedule,” Bell commented.

Continue reading Atlanta Summer Classics Finale Packed with Big Awards