Sharn Wordley and Gatsby ©Sportfot.
Mill Spring, NC – July 13, 2019 – Sharn Wordley (NZL) and his own Gatsby raced to a 36.033-second win in the $72,000 Nutrena® Grand Prix CSI 2* at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC). Adam Prudent (USA) and Romeo de Villaret, the 2005 Selle Francais stallion (Mr. Blue (NL) x If de Merze) owned by Plain Bay Sales, claimed second-place honors, halting the jump-off timers with a time of 36.242 seconds. Abigail McArdle (USA) and Victorio 5, a 2006 Hanoverian stallion (Uccello x Graf Top) owned by Victorio Equine Group LLC, rounded out the podium with their 36.609-second performance in the short course.
Bernardo Costa Cabral (POR) had 42 pairs challenge his first-round course, with seven returning to compete in the jump-off. “He [Cabral] did a really good job,” emphasized Wordley. “He made the course tricky enough that it was hard to jump. I think the height was perfect, and the time was just right that you had to go quick enough, which caused some problems, but without making it too difficult for people. So, I think he nailed it. He did such a good course.”
Wordley piloted two horses through the first-round track, and explained that tonight was Gatsby’s time to shine. “My second horse, [Any], didn’t have a very good warm-up, so it just wasn’t her night, but Gatsby was awesome.”
Though it was Gatsby’s night, it wasn’t a jump-off designed for the 2004 Irish Sport Horse stallion (Simba x Cruise On), Wordley admitted: “In the jump-off, my strategy actually didn’t go to plan. Gatsby doesn’t turn so well to the right, and there were two tight turns to the right in the jump-off,” he explained. “I actually wanted to do two less strides from [fences] two to three, and two less strides [in the other turn], but I just wanted to go fast enough to put pressure on the others.
“That way,” Wordley continued, “if they wanted to beat me, they needed to do something that could cause a rail, which is what happened. I think the only one who was faster had two [rails] down trying to beat my time, so it worked out.”
Though both Wordley and Gatsby have found great success at TIEC, Wordley is hoping that this win carries him forward to his next venture. “Gatsby will have next week and the week after off, then he’ll probably do the two star in Angelstone, which he won last year.
“I like winning… it’s good!” Wordley concluded. “Gatsby likes winning; he loves it. And it’s always good to beat Santiago Lambre,” he added of his competitor who piloted two rides in the jump-off. “Even if it’s in the 1.30m, I like to beat him, because that guy is fast!”
For more information and results, please visit www.Tryon.com.