Wellington, FL — February 15, 2018 — It was the 24-year-old Belgian rider Olivier Philippaerts (BEL) who triumphed over 53 fellow competitors to take the $35,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 6 in week six of the 12-week 2018 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF).
Aboard the 10-year-old gelding H&M Ikker — who is still owned by his breeder Roger Van Nuffelen — Philippaerts posted a blistering 37.61 seconds to take an unassailable lead. Second-placed Francisco Musa (BRA) and Catch Me Imperio Egipicio were almost two seconds adrift, with the only other clear in the jump-off coming from American rider Callan Solem (Davidson), who finished third. The course designer for CSI competition this week is Ana Catlina Harris of Mexico.
Philippaerts, who is 24 and competing at WEF for the first time, said: “I watched the first [jump-off] round, but decided to just go my own round and see where I ended up; luckily it was fast enough today. He turns very well in the jump-off, which is what makes him quite fast.”
Mitchell, Stewart, and Colvin Win Double Championships in WCHR Week
Brady Mitchell and King of Blue, a six-year-old Swedish Warmblood gelding by Bravour, were second, third, and fourth over fences and second in the under saddle to also claim the championship in one section of the Equine Tack & Nutritionals Green Hunter 3’6″.
Mitchell and his mount, Seaside, owned by Eliza Kimball, won the Heathman Farm Performance Hunter 3’6” Section A championship after they placed first in the under saddle and first, second, and third over fences.
Mitchell has placed third, fourth, and fifth in the Hunter Spectacular at WEF, but is still searching for a win, saying, “I am dying to win it; it’s like the Aachen of hunters.”
Scott Stewart took home two championship wins today aboard Catch Me, owned by Gochman Sport Horses LLC, in the Antares Sellier France High Performance Working Hunter division, and aboard Lucador, owned by Dr. Betsee Parker, in the High Performance Conformation Hunter division.
Catch Me, an 11-year-old Holsteiner gelding, was champion last week in the WEF 5 Amateur Owner Hunter Over 35 with Becky Gochman, and continued to impress the judges into week six as Stewart piloted the grey to first place in the High Performance Working Hunter under saddle. The pair was first, first, and second over fences.
Victoria Colvin was named champion in one section of week six’s Marshall & Sterling Insurance Performance Working Hunter 3’3” division. Colvin and her mount, For Ever, owned by Victoria Colvin LLC, were first, first, and second over fences.
Colvin, who has had the six-year-old gelding for a few years now, emerged from her championship presentation in ring seven and hopped on the young Holsteiner bareback with a big smile on her face.
Wellington, FL – February 1, 2018 – The fourth week of the 2018 Winter Equestrian Festival hosts jumpers on the grass derby field at the Equestrian Village at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC), show grounds of the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival. Amanda Derbyshire (GBR) and Gochman Sport Horses LLC’s Luibanta BH were victorious in the $70,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup Round 4.
Sixty-four entries contested the WEF Challenge Cup, and 10 found the key to a clear round over Anderson Lima’s (BRA) course on the grass. It was Derbyshire and Luibanta BH, a 10-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare by Luidam x Abantos, who blazed around the jump-off to win in 47.50 seconds.
Victoria Colvin and Dragonstone Repeat Championship Performance in Pre-Green Hunter 3 & 4 Year Olds
Victoria Colvin and new partner, Dragonstone, owned by Bryan Baldwin, claimed their second championship win in the Pre-Green Hunter 3 & 4 Year Olds division on Thursday morning of WEF 4. The pair was first, second, and third over fences and first in the under saddle.
“This was my second time showing him,” said Colvin. “The first time I showed him he was champion as well. I have only been riding him for a bit, but he really is the sweetest and easiest horse.”
Lexington, Ky. – Aug. 19, 2017 – The country’s best hunter horses and riders returned to the Rolex Stadium for the second and final phase of competition in the 2017 USHJA International Hunter Derby Championship. Competitors returned with their classic round scores in tow, and had one last chance to show off their horses and their skills around designers Allan Lohman and Danny Moore’s skillfully-planned course. John French, the 2009 champion, sat in the prime position with the one-two lead after day one, trailed by Victoria Colvin and rookie Geoffrey Hesslink in the next two spots. As the early leaders, these three were targets for their counterparts, with Colvin and Cuba ultimately pulling away from the pack with a standout round to secure the 2017 USHJA International Hunter Derby Championship Honors.
Young rider Taylor St. Jacques and Heritage Farm, Inc.’s Charisma separated from the field for the early lead as the seventh of 25 pairs to take their turn in the handy round, pulling in a score of 299.75 for the day and an impressive total score of 559.75. Just a few turns later, sitting in 12th position entering the day, Amanda Steege knew she needed to ride boldly aboard Wendy Salomon’s Maitre D’ if she were to have a chance at the title, and instead of focusing simply on where she could cut strides to promote handiness, the veteran rider honed her efforts on exemplifying a steady and confident pace. Based on the scores of 88.00, 86.75 and 85.25, plus handy scores of 8, 8 and 7 that she received from the judges panel, it was obvious Steege did her job well. She and “Mr. Lucky” earned a nightly score of 295.00 once the high option points were added, bumping her to an overall score of 560.50 and the class lead with 11 pairs still to ride.
Whittled down to only the top three individuals left to go, Steege still sat atop the leaderboard. French and Hiller Farms, LLC’s Center Court, his second-place horse, rode ahead of their place in the reverse order to allow French time to swap mounts, but they were unable to overtake Steege with their two-day composite score of 535.50. Hesslink and his own 6-year-old Cadoretto took the stage sitting in fourth place after the first phase, and though the young Hesslink professed to be nervous in his debut USHJA International Hunter Derby Championship showing, he exuded confidence in the ring and was rewarded by the highest scores of the night to eclipse Steege and take over the lead. Hesslink and his chestnut gelding garnered scores of 90.00, 88.50 and 87.00 from the three panels of judges and, when combined with handy scores of 8 across the board plus 12 option points, broke the 300-point barrier with their nightly tally of 301.50. Combined with Friday’s score, Hesslink earned a lofty 574.50 points over the two phases, and was one of only three pairs to hit the 90 mark.
Unfortunately for Hesslink, his score would not hold, as Colvin, no stranger to the winner’s circle in the hunter ring, out did herself aboard Cuba, the 11-year-old gelding owned by John and Stephanie Ingram, LLC. Colvin navigated the handy round like a seasoned pro and, like Steege, paid attention to not just taking the tightest turns possible, but treated her high position with respect and rode a steady round, which paid off. She and Cuba earned scores of 92.00, 88.75 and 88.25, plus the highest handy scores of the night at 10, 9 and 9. The four high option fences further added to her score for a grand total of 309.00 and a two-day score of 584.25, nearly 10 points ahead of Hesslink. As the day-one leader and last to go in the class, French and Laura Wasserman’s Skyhawk had a high standard to beat with Colvin’s score, and though the pair laid down an efficient round, an unfortunate knockdown at the stone wall, not an uncommon occurrence for the night, knocked them out of contention, solidifying Colvin and Cuba as the 2017 champions.
Colvin rode to a total payout of over $45,000 to go along with her championship winnings, followed by Hesslink in the reserve position. Prior to competition, Hesslink and Cadoretto had accrued only $1,200 together in derby winnings, but the pair, who have only been a team since the spring season, will leave the Rolex Stadium not only with the nearly $30,000 check that goes to the overall reserve champion, but also prize money for the highest-placing Section B pair, an amount that exceeds $10,000. Steege and Maitre D’ retained their third place position to stay on the podium, and St. Jacques, also in her debut showing, and Charisma finished in fourth place by less than a full point. Kelli Cruciotti and her own Monterrey nabbed the next spot with their total score of 553.50 to round out the top five finishers.
Earlier in the afternoon, 38 horses and riders who did not qualify for the handy round took another shot at some prize money, riding in the $10,000 Derby Challenge, sponsored by Spring Gathering Charity Horse Show and PJP Farm. Like the handy round, Lohman and Moore’s course included plenty of option jumps and inside turn options, allowing riders to exhibit their mount’s handiness. As the first to go in the order, Timothy Maddrix and Wimberly Debono’s Indecision did not have the luxury of seeing any competitors ride the track, but as it turned out, they did not need the insight. The pair navigated the course brilliantly and was rewarded with scores of 89.00, 87.00 and 83.00, in addition to 12 option points and 24 handy points from the judges’ panel, for a composite score of 295.00 to set a high standard at the onset of the class. Though they were hunted by all subsequent entrants, only two managed to come within 10 points of the class leaders. David Oliynyk and Generous, owned by Lori Gaudet, laid down a spectacular trip but ended up just shy of the top prize, finishing on a 294.50 score, just one-half point behind Maddrix and Indecision.
Steege, with the ride aboard Loxley, owned by Finale Partners, LLC, was the next-closest competitor, earning a 291.00 with the bay stallion, followed by Evan Coluccio and Lisa Vesterstein’s Anthem with total marks of 281.00. With a score of 279.00, Daniel Geitner and True Story, owned by Kelly Sims, rounded out the top five.
Prior to Saturday’s handy round of the 2017 USHJA International Hunter Derby Championship, Jersey Boy, famously ridden by Jennifer Alfano and owned by Susie Schoellkopf, was honored and recognized for his incredible athleticism, talent and success as one of the best international hunter derby horses in a special retirement ceremony held during the opening ceremonies. The pair won the 2012 $100,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby Championship, and also claimed the reserve championship in the prestigious competition in 2009 and 2014. In addition, the hunter derby superstar still firmly stands atop the USHJA lifetime money-won leaderboard and has won the George H. Morris Perpetual Trophy four times as the highest money earner. Next, Jersey Boy will enjoy his well-deserved retirement at Stacy Sandbothe’s farm in Prospect, Tennessee.
Fuqua and Colvin Victorious in $10,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby
Wellington, FL – March 11, 2017 – Karen Polle (JPN) and With Wings made it two-for-two during week nine at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL with a victory in Saturday night’s $380,000 Douglas Elliman Grand Prix CSI 5*, presented by The Bainbridge Companies, after also topping Thursday’s $130,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup (the grand prix qualifier). U.S. Olympian Margie Engle (USA) riding Royce, and Spanish Olympian Sergio Alvarez Moya aboard Charmeur, placed second and third, respectively.
Alan Wade’s (IRL) course got the best of many on Saturday night, as only four out of 39 entries cleared the first round without fault. In the jump-off, Polle and her 14-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Larino x L. Ronald) were the only pair to complete a second clear track, racing through the timers in 42.42 seconds.
Engle and Gladewinds Partners’ Royce had one rail in the double combination and finished in 43.36 seconds. Alvarez Moya and Charmeur dropped one rail at the final fence in the jump-off with a time of 43.81 seconds. Quentin Judge (USA) placed fourth, riding Double H Farm’s HH Conrad to 12 faults over the short course in 45.22 seconds.
Remarking on her win, 24-year-old Polle declared, “I feel disbelief first of all. It has not really sunk in yet. The week could not have gone any better. I won both my classes, and my horse jumped unbelievably all week, every jump. He really helped me out, and he felt great tonight, so I am really, really happy.”
Detailing her strategy for the jump-off, Polle stated, “My plan was just to go as fast as I could. There were only four, so I just wanted to go for it, because I was going to get a good ribbon either way. I just picked up a good gallop and tried to be as neat as I could.”
Saturday was Polle’s first time jumping clear, and her first time jumping off, in a Saturday Night Lights grand prix at WEF. She had the great confidence of a longtime partnership riding With Wings on her side.
“When I first got him, I did not know so much. I was still a junior, but I knew he was special,” Polle said of their seven-year partnership. “I really believed in him, and I did not ever feel like there was a jump that was too big for us, or a course that was too difficult for us. I am just really glad that we were able to win because I have always felt like he is a real winner.”
During their years together, Polle and With Wings have had the guidance of some of the biggest names in show jumping. Olympic team gold medalist and Rolex Grand Slam Champion Scott Brash (GBR), Olympian Mario Deslauriers (USA), ten-time Olympian Ian Millar (CAN), and Olympic silver and bronze medalist Paul Schockemöhle (GER) have all played a role in developing this young talent. On Saturday night, Polle was competing under the tutelage of Olympic Champion Rodrigo Pessoa of Brazil.
“I have been really lucky to work with quite a few top professionals,” Polle acknowledged. “All of them have really helped me and Wings get to where we are now. I used little things that I have learned from all of them tonight to do the course, and to do the jump-off.
“I hope to win a lot more classes like this,” she added. “It is an unbelievable feeling, and this is why we do this – why we work so hard at home to then come here and be able to win a class like this. I hope I can continue to have many more of these moments and many more Saturday night grand prix wins.”
Engle was aboard her talented mount Royce for a second place finish on Saturday and was happy with her horse’s efforts.
“He has felt great all circuit,” Engle said of the 13-year-old Oldenburg stallion (Café au Lait x Grandilot). “Karen just was the one to beat this week. She was on fire. I was very happy with Royce. He has been riding very well. He jumped well on Thursday and then again tonight. I just jumped in a little big into the double (in the jump-off). He tried to get out of the way. I just needed to nip inside, but he felt great.”
Commenting on the evening’s course, Engle continued, “I thought it was tough enough. It was appropriate for a five-star event. There were a lot of technical questions. The course was long, and it was up and down. It was kind of nice to have only four in the jump-off. You knew that if you went clean, you were going to get a good piece of the prize money.”
Alvarez Moya was riding a less experienced mount for the night’s competition with his ten-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding Charmeur (Numero Uno x Gelha’s VDL Emilion).
“I am very happy the way he jumped today. It is his first big grand prix,” Alvarez Moya noted. “He is pretty sensitive, and I was doubting actually until last night if I was going to ride him in the grand prix or not, but he is normally very brave. I was very happy when I saw there were only four in the jump-off. I knew they were fast, but I had to be a little careful at the number three. In the first round my horse did a little bit of a funny jump, and I did not want to scare him in the jump-off. I think the rest was good. He tried hard. He was very careful, and I am just very happy with him.
“I have had him since he was six,” Alvarez Moya continued. “Last year he did a few bigger classes, but not like this, and for sure not under the lights and a five-star grand prix. I always believed a lot in him. I think he is a pretty special horse. He is just very sensitive and sharp, so I took it very slow with him. I definitely think he is the one I have to replace Carlo, which is not an easy job.”
Representing Douglas Elliman Real Estate, Don Langdon remarked on the evening’s competition and praised the riders on a great night of sport.
“First of all, congratulations to the top three – Margie, Sergio, and Karen,” Langdon stated. “It is great for me, who does not ride, to participate for the last 30 years and to see the growth of what has happened in this community. Mark (Bellissimo) has built this brand far greater than any sights that we had ever imagined. Douglas Elliman is the fourth largest real estate company in the country. We are a private company, which is great. This plays right into our brand. We like to patronize the people that also patronize our company, and obviously the equestrians have been an amazing role in our success in the Wellington area. We appreciate that.”
Equestrian Sport Productions CEO Mark Bellissimo wrapped a great night with his comments. He stated, “There were people years ago who said that we would never fill the seats when we built them, and I think the reality is that we are coming consistently every Saturday with pretty much a full house. I think it is a testament to the athletes here. People here are developing a following. I think the sport is really taking hold in this community, and hopefully, that is something that can be replicated in other markets. I want to thank Rolex first and foremost. These five-stars are very important to attract the talent that we have here. Rolex is the brand that has stepped up and really transformed this facility with very heavy investment, and allowed us to get to the four five-star events.
“I am really proud of the riders,” Bellissimo continued. “To see Karen and that smile; it is great when you see someone win something for the first time. This was the first time that a Japanese rider has won a five-star grand prix here. I was very happy to see the excitement of Karen’s win, and hopefully it is the first of many.”
As the grand prix winner, Polle was presented the Herman ‘Kappy’ Kaplan Perpetual Memorial Trophy. She was also given the Leading Lady Rider Award for week nine, presented by Martha Jolicoeur of Douglas Elliman Real Estate.
Also competing in the International Arena on Saturday, Giavanna Rinaldi and Haylie Rolfe’s Caretina III won the $10,000 SJHOF Junior Jumper Classic, presented by Sleepy P Ranch. The $15,000 SJHOF High Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic, presented by Engel & Völkers, saw a win for Lacey Gilbertson and Seabrook LLC’s Baloppi. Kamille Marcussen and Bull Run’s Pistol Pete were also victorious in the $1,500 Martha Jolicoeur, Douglas Elliman Low Amateur-Owner Jumper speed class.
Fuqua and Colvin Victorious in $10,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby
Junior, amateur, and professional hunter riders guided their horses around the grass derby field at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center’s Equestrian Village on Saturday morning in the $10,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby. The class was awarded in two sections, a junior/amateur section and an open section, and consisted of first and second rounds, where the top 12 competitors returned for a handy trip.
Kat Fuqua of Atlanta, GA won her second big class of the weekend. After winning the $5,000 USHJA Pony Hunter Derby on Friday, she bested a field of 20 juniors and amateurs aboard High Noon 3E. The pair earned scores of 83 in the first round and 84 in the second round for a combined total of 167.
Speaking of her third experience showing the gelding in a national derby, Fuqua said, “It feels really good to win the derby. This is the first horse derby I’ve placed in with him. I loved doing the victory gallop, and he felt really good on the grass field. I train with Liz Reilly and Keri Kampsen; they’ve helped me improve a lot.”
One of the youngest in the class, Fuqua started riding the 2003 Canadian Sport Horse, owned by Float On Equestrian, LLC, earlier in the winter circuit and also shows him in the Children’s Hunter and Equitation 11 & Under divisions.
“We call him ‘Hippo’ in the barn,” she continued. “He loves attention (and) treats and is really friendly. My favorite thing about him is his smooth stride. I’m really proud of my horse!”
Kira Telford of Chicago, IL claimed the second place ribbon. Telford rode Calistoga Gold to matching scores of 82 in both rounds, for an overall total of 164. The third place ribbon went Lisa Butzer of Boca Raton, FL, and CS Online, owned by Allyson Coluccio. The pair received scores of 81 and 76 in the first and second rounds, respectively, for a total score of 157.
Victoria Colvin of Loxahatchee, FL piloted Harper Lee to the win in the open section. Colvin and the six-year-old Polish Warmblood mare earned the highest scores in both trips, an 88 in the first round and a 94 in the second round, for an overall score of 182.
“She’s the easiest horse in the world,” Colvin explained. “She just goes right around the field and doesn’t look at the spooky jumps or anything. In the handy round, the horse before me was really nice so I had to go for it, and she was amazing. I just let go and cantered around.”
Laura Karet has owned the mare for two years and recently started showing her in the Low Adult Hunters.
“We’ve been bringing her along slowly, and this is really exciting,” said Karet. “This is her second derby. She’s really never done anything like this so we didn’t know what to expect. We’re very proud of her!”
Colvin also picked up the third place in ribbon in the open section guiding Caliber, another entry owned by Laura Karet, to a first round score 84 and a handy score of 90, which resulted in a total score of 174. Kim Barone of Watertown, MN received the second place ribbon aboard Easy Street HU, owned by Raven Ridge Farm, with scores of 87.5 and 91 in the first and second round, respectively, to earn a combined score of 178.5.
The ninth week of the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival concludes on Sunday with the $86,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic in the International Arena. The Rosenbaum Mollengarden PLLC Large Pony Hunter division will determine championship and reserve honors in Ring 11. For more information and full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.
Victoria Colvin and Regent RCF Earn Top Honors in $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby
Wellington, FL – December 2, 2016 – Samuel Parot (CHI) and Quick Du Pottier rose to the challenge in the $35,000 Dever 1.45m Classic at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC). The pair raced through the timers to complete their course in 59.22 seconds for the win. Eduardo Menezes (BRA) and Carushka collected second place with a time of 60.36 seconds, while Richie Moloney (IRL) and Alsvid earned third after securing a time of 61.12 seconds.
Parot and his own Quick Du Pottier, a 2004 Selle Francais gelding (Hurlevent de Breka x Cuba), topped the class of 45 entries with the quickest time of the day, making easy work of the course designed by Anthony D’Ambrosio (USA).
“I thought the course rode very fast and on my first horse I had one down so I knew what to do on my second horse. I rode it very fast on my second horse and made some nice turns,” explained Parot. “We turned to the oxer before the skinny very quickly had a good ride to the end combination.”
Parot is an expert at navigating the quickest path around the track as a notoriously fast rider. He noted that he felt he made up the second separating him and Menezes in his approach to the final combination.
“I made the turn to the last combination very close and it rode very well. I believe that is where I made the difference,” he said.
Quick Du Pottier and Parot have traveled across North America this year, competing on the West Coast, as well as in Canada, most recently picking up an FEI win in Calgary this past October.
“This horse also jumped the first day in the speed class and we went fast there too. I think we had a better time, but had one down. This is a very nice horse, who just came back into work this August. He jumped very well yesterday and I think he’s a top horse.”
After the conclusion of this week’s competition, Parot will give Quick Du Pottier a vacation until the middle of the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) circuit, where the pair will debut during one of the CSI 5* weeks.
“He will get a good break after this and will come back in the circuit to do the 5* and we will keep doing the ranking classes with him, absolutely,” noted Parot. “All of my horses competing this week, Atlantis, Cous, and Quick, will all have a vacation after this, but I have a few young horses that I will jump in the national classes before WEF.”
Victoria Colvin and Regent RCF Earn Top Honors in $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby
Victoria Colvin of Loxahatchee, FL guided Regent RCF to top honors in the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby, besting a large class of talented entries. The pair earned a two round score of 171 for the win ahead of Skyler Fields of Wellesley Hills, MA and Duplukato, owned by Donald Stewart, who finished in second place with a total score of 164. Grace Boston of Owings Mills, MD and Amazone De La Cense, owned by Plain Bay Farm, collected third place honors.
Colvin, a household name who has garnered many of the most prestigious accolades in the hunter discipline throughout her career, piloted another mount to the winner’s circle after collecting a first round score of 86 and a second round score of 85. Fields, who followed in second, captured the highest score of the day in her handy round aboard Duplukato, receiving an 89 from the judging panel.
The class hosted 18 entries and marked the first USHJA National Hunter Derby of the 2016 ESP Holiday Series, which will continue through the first week of January. Grace Boston, who was presented with third and fourth place honors, piloted three different entries, the most of any rider in the class.
For more information on Palm Beach International Equestrian Center, please visit www.pbiec.com.
Victoria Colvin and Austria 2 (Photo courtesy of Mancini Photos)
Wellington, Florida (May 2, 2016) – With the spectacular center arena of the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center set to host Grand Prix competition for the final time in the first half of 2016, a field of 43 horses and riders tested their mettle over an elaborate course designed by Mexico’s Catsy Cruz. Headlined by PonyUp Horse Treats, a producer of sustainably farmed, all natural treats, the class marked the concluding premier international competition for Wellington’s prestigious show grounds, running April 20-24, 2016. Victoria Colvin and the elegant dark bay mare Austria 2 combined speed and precision to put in a meticulous ride in both the first round and the jump-off, securing her the top spot in the PonyUp Horse Treats $30,000 Grand Prix.
As one of only four double clears following the 11 horse jump-off, Colvin and the 2008 Holsteiner mare (Casall x U2 I), owned by Take the High Road, LLC, finished with a time of 33.174 seconds, with Angel Karolyi and Indiana 27 nipping at their heels with a 33.429. Margie Engle and Bockmanns Lazio raced to third in 34.288, while Frances Land and For Edition rounded out the double clear rounds in 38.062. Colvin and Austria 2 were the last combination to go, and the decorated hunter jumper rider had developed a feel for the course in earlier rounds aboard Echo Van T Spieveld and Chanel B 2. The typically fast mare benefitted from Colvin’s experience over the fences, and the pair found a winning balance of speed and synergy to top the class. Todd Minikus and Mark Bluman each put in quick rides in the jump off that would have bested Colvin’s, if not for single rails that dropped them out of the double clears.
“This was the biggest course we’ve ridden in the US,” said Colvin. “We took her last year in the 7-year-olds in Europe, and have been slowly moving her up and gaining experience. She’s a firecracker to ride, and we’ve been turning that forward energy into fast times on course. Today I wanted to win, but also wanted to be sure she wasn’t rushing. The course had some challenges for us, and I am really with how she handled them. Our plan for the future is to move her up to the 1.50m and the bigger Grand Prixs gradually so she has the strength and experience to stay clear while preserving her speed.”
Wellington, FL – April 25, 2016 – On the final day of competition at ESP Spring III, Victoria Colvin of Loxahatchee, FL earned top honors in the $30,000 PonyUp Horse Treats Grand Prix at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) aboard Austria 2, owned by Take the High Road, LLC, as the duo finished with a time of 33.174 seconds. Angel Karolyi of Aiken, SC, and Indiana 27 secured second place crossing the timers in 33.429 seconds, while Margie Engle of Wellington, FL and Bockmanns Lazio collected third place with a strong finish in 34.288 seconds. Competition at PBIEC will resume with ESP Spring IV beginning on Friday, May 6, and continuing through Sunday, May 8.
Colvin and Austria 2 topped a class of 43 entries in what Colvin said was the biggest track Austria 2 had tackled so far in their career together in the U.S. The course, set by Catsy Cruz (MEX), saw 11 combinations move into the jump-off, while Colvin piloted Austria 2 to only one of only four double clear rounds on the afternoon.
“We didn’t get her too long ago so we’re still creating a relationship with each other. We bought her on one of our Europe trips last summer right before The Hampton Classic,” explained Colvin. “I rode her in the 7-Year-Old classes and she just turned eight this year. We’ve done some of the 1.45m ranking classes with her and she’s definitely moving her way up.”
The 2008 Holsteiner mare (Casall x U2 I) is incredibly scopey and has an element of quickness to her way of going, which Colvin has been trying to refine over the past few months, helping to create more rideability on course.
“She’s getting very rideable and she’s caught on very fast in understanding what we’re asking her to do,” she explained. “We’ve changed a lot about bitting finding what’s right for her and she’s getting smart. She’s becoming much easier to ride.”
Colvin went last in the order with Austria 2, having already ridden the course aboard Echo Van T Spieveld and Chanel B 2 earlier in the class. Her previous rides helped her find a suitable track for Austria 2, who tends to be faster over the ground.
“I had a chance to see a couple of people go, but not as many as I thought I would for the jump-off. I don’t want to go too fast with her yet because she just doesn’t have enough experience right now, commented Colvin. “Someone was two seconds faster, but had a rail. I just wanted to go in and put down a nice round with her. Like I said, she’s typically pretty fast, so you’re already motoring around and I did want to go for a top ribbon.”
As for the course, it was one of the bigger tests the pair has seen since Colvin took over the ride, and she was impressed with the way Austria 2 handled the more technical questions set around the track. She explained, “It was bigger than I thought it would be for sure and larger than the past two weeks. It had some tough questions, which was good for us. I ended up doing five in one of the four stride lines and the triple combination was big. It was overall a very nice course.”
Heading next to Lexington, KY, Colvin will bring a solid string of jumpers with her, including Don Juan, Chanel B 2, Echo Van T Spieveld, Cafino, and Austria 2, in which she will look for strong finishes aboard each. As for Austria 2, she hopes the mare will continue to gain experience and confidence in the ring, which will set them up nicely for a strong debut in the bigger classes later this year.
“Right now, she’s going to keep doing the 1.45m classes and move up to the 1.50m maybe by the fall. I want to make sure that we aren’t rushing her, but she’s got a lot of talent and I’m excited to see where she can go,” she concluded.
German Camargo of Loxahatchee, FL and his own Centurio earned victory in a competitive $5,000 1.35m class at ESP Spring III with a time of 35.755 seconds. David Blake of Wellington, FL and Bella Donna, owned by Pine Hollow Farm, took second place, finishing in 37.411 seconds, while Denise Wilson of Ocala, FL and Alonso, owned by Neil Jones Equestrian, rounded out the top three, completing the track in 37.622 seconds.
In the $1,500 NAL Child/Adult Jumper Classic presented by The Tackeria, Ally Marrinan of Saunderstown, RI and Ruby, owned by Rose Hill Farm, won the class, finishing in 36.528 seconds. Ella Bostwick of Wellington, FL and Bull Run’s Udamann, owned by Christine Bostwick, earned second place honors with a time of 38.245 seconds, while Maggie Alexander of Wellington, FL and her own Dukata collected third place crossing through the timers in 38.245 seconds.
Anna Beth Athey of Enid, OK and her own Serena proved difficult to beat in the Low Amateur Owner Jumper division presented by Gold Coast Feed. The duo earned top finishes in two of the three classes composing the division, while Skylar Rogalny of Wellington, FL and Optimal Hastak, owned by Sweet Oak Farm, collected reserve honors.
Hunter & Equitation Highlights
Switching disciplines, but continuing with her winning ways, Victoria Colvin of Loxahatchee, FL and Cacao, owned by Olivia Slocum, took victory in the $5,000 USHJA Hunter Classic at PBIEC with an overall score of 179.5. Colvin also picked up second place piloting With Me, owned by Victoria Colvin & Partners LLC, to a score of 179, for a small spread between first and second place. Robert Bielefeld of Wellington, FL and HH Himself, owned by Dr. Ana Lisa Carr, took third place with an overall score of 169.
Colvin and Cacao earned an 86 from the judging panel in the first round to nudge the 85 she received aboard With Me to second place. The duo then returned to secure an 85.5 in the second round, while Colvin earned an 86 aboard With Me, which finished the afternoon with second place.
Madelyn Porter of Laude, MO and Dragonfly’s Encore, owned by Dragonfly Farms, secured first place in the $1,000 Junior/Amateur Owner 3’6″ Hunter Classic presented by Sweet Oak Farm and also picked up second place aboard Dragonfly’s Acerado. Kathryn Haefner of Hamburg, NY and Columbus, owned by Kathryn Haefner LLC, earned third place.
In the $1,000 Junior/Amateur Owner 3’3″ Hunter Classic presented by Sweet Oak Farm, Amelia Ruth of New York, NY and Redeemed, owned by Katherine Mistick, finished atop the class. Kaitlin Porath of Charlotte, NC and O.C., owned by Meadow Hill Stables, collected second place honors, while Reid Arani of Lexington, KY and Samba, owned by Marigot Bay Farm LLC, finished in third place.
Jennifer Hannan of Wakefield, RI rode to first and second place with in the $1,000 Pre-Green Incentive, earning first aboard Best Regards, owned by Patricia Fulchino, and second place with Soon to Be, owned by Jennifer Smith. Molly Sewell of Winter Park, FL and Dragonfly’s Cellestine finished in third place.
Adam Edgar of Leesburg, VA and Land’s End Rondo, owned by Bill Schaub, championed the $500 Pony Hunter Classic presented by Forget Me Not Farm, while Samantha Palermo of Merritt Island, FL and her own Neptune, earned second place. Molly Deeks of Boca Raton, FL and Boca’s Tommy Terrific, owned by Ponies & Palms Show Stables LLC, rounded out the top three, finishing in third place.
Sara Ballinger of Marion, OH and her own Wanderprinz finished earned the blue ribbon in the Ariat National Adult Medal over the weekend, while Samantha Harris of Stuart, FL and Ludger, owned by Becky Harris, earned second place. Jennifer Prior of Wellington, FL took third place aboard her own Lupicor II.
In a competitive ASPCA Maclay Medal class at ESP Spring III, Hana Bieling of Wellington, FL and Renoir, owned by Mackenzie McGehee, topped the class of 18 entries. Catherine Stafford of Worthington, OH and Alando, owned by Victoria Hoft, took second place, while Olivia Woodson of Wellington, FL and Temptation, owned by Laura Macallister, finished third.
For more information on the ESP Spring Series and PBIEC, please visit www.pbiec.com.
Wellington, FL – April 7, 2016 – Victoria Colvin of Loxahatchee, Florida and Don Juan, owned by Take the High Road LLC, captured their first victory of the 2016 ESP Spring Series, topping the $10,000 Neue Schule Open Welcome Stake at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC). The ESP Spring Series, which began Wednesday, April 6, will continue through Sunday, May 15.
Colvin and Don Juan crossed the jump-off timers in 36.423 seconds to narrowly edge Paul O’Shea of Wellington, FL and Primo Calypso, who finished in 36.471 seconds. Samuel Parot, Jr. of Wellington, FL and Amaretas finished just four tenths off the leading pace to earn third place with a time of 36.859 seconds.
The course, set by Richard Jeffrey (GBR), saw 49 initial entries with 17 combinations advancing to the jump-off round. Ten pairs finished the afternoon with a double clear effort.
Colvin and Don Juan have been partnered for nearly four years and their relationship has continued to evolve as they have gained valuable experience in the ring. For Colvin, competing her longtime mount is something she always looks forward to, as the pair is incredibly consistent at the 1.40m height.
“I’ve had him for a very long time. He was mainly my junior jumper and young rider horse,” said Colvin. “I like to keep him at this height and maybe a few 1.45m classes here and there. He does really well in the 1.40m speed classes.”
Piloting two mounts around the track, Colvin was pleased with the way the course suited both Don Juan and Chanel B 2, who is also owned by Take the High Road LLC. She elaborated, “I walked the course and it seemed very straight forward. It was a good solid round with my first one Chanel. We wanted a nice double clean round with her since she’s just getting back into the competition ring. With Don Juan, he is just very fast. He’s built that way. Typically with him, if I go neat and stay on my lines, we’re always going to go for the win.
“In the jump off it was the tight turns and the gallop to the last fence that I think made the difference. There were a few places where you could do a few tight turns and I think that’s where we were able to seal the deal,” she continued.
Don Juan has been a very educational mount for Colvin so far in her career, while his ever-changing attitude and ringside demeanor continue to keep her on her toes before the start of competition. The opinionated gelding understands his job in the ring, but Colvin explained that she still rides every course as though it’s their first time competing together.
“He’s older with a been-there-done-that kind of mentality but he can be unpredictable. If he goes in and is feeling it, we’re always in the ribbons and close to the top of the class. In the warm up though, you can’t trick him. He is very aware of what’s going on so we do very little with him, maybe a few small verticals, a small over, and a liverpool if we’re lucky,” commented Colvin. “I got a bit nervous because there was an open water fence next to the skinny that I thought he would look at on course, but he really was great in the ring.”
Finishing the afternoon with both mounts placed in the top five, Colvin was thrilled with the performance of her horses, and quickly pointed out her excitement with Chanel B 2, who has returned to competition in excellent form.
“Chanel did exceptionally well today and I’m very proud of her. We started to bring her back right around mid WEF and have just moved up to the 1.40m. I just wanted a clear ribbon round with her and she really delivered today,” she noted.
ESP Spring 1 competition will feature the $25,000 Nutrena Grand Prix, as well as the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby, on Sunday, April 10. For more information on the ESP Spring Series, please visit www.pbiec.com.
Wellington, Fla. – CSIO Wellington came to a close with the Grand Prix for Children, Juniors, Young Riders, and Seniors taking place in Palm Beach International Equestrian Center’s International Arena. Topping the $10,000 Young Rider Grand Prix presented by Hollow Creek Farm was Victoria Colvin, who earned the win with a lightning fast jump-off round aboard Zidane.
A field of 13 top Young Riders took on the Steve Stephens-designed track with six combinations going clear in the first round. Included in the six were U.S. representatives from the Gold-medal winning FEI Young Rider Nations Cup Team, Colvin (Loxahatchee, Fla.) with Springfield Showjumper’s Zidane and Madison Goetzmann (Skaneateles, N.Y.) with her own Wrigley. Going second in the order, Goetzmann had a costly rail down to place fifth.
Colvin had the advantageous position of being last to go and followed Mexico’s Fernanda Rodriguez De Haene, who set what appeared to be an unbeatable time of 35.11. “I had watched [Fernanda] on the Jumbotron and saw her galloping past the in-gate and thought there was no way I could beat that [time],” said Colvin. Holding nothing back, Colvin expertly guided Zidane to a foot-perfect finish through the timers in 34.97 seconds. “I went in there and told Zidane we were going to go for it. I haven’t done too many jump-offs with Zidane, but he was really game for it,” said Colvin.
It was Mexico that dominated the Children’s and Junior Grand Prix, winning both handily. Luciana Gonzalez Guerra and Zidane topped the Children’s Grand Prix, while Carlos Hank Guerreiro and Golden Horta won the Junior Grand Prix.
In the $216,000 CSIO4* Grand Prix presented by Lugano Diamonds, Stephens presented a technical track with a tight time allowed, sending five combinations forward to the jump-off from the 50-horse field. As the sole American representative in the jump-off, Hardin Towell, riding Jennifer Gates, LLC’s Emilie De Diamant A S, had a rail down at fence two to finish fifth. Darragh Kenny of Ireland came away victorious aboard Red Star D’Argent.
Victoria Colvin and Austria 2. Photo copyright Sportfot.
Darragh Kenny and Tiffany Foster Open CSIO Competition with Victories
Wellington, FL – March 2, 2016 – Week eight of the 2016 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) began Wednesday morning at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL with a win for Victoria Colvin of Loxahatchee, FL riding Austria 2 in the $25,000 Nutrena Jumper Classic.
WEF 8 features CSIO 4* jumper and “AA” rated hunter divisions running March 2-6, 2016. The week will highlight the $150,000 FEI Nations’ Cup on the evening of Friday, March 4. The $150,000 Nations Cup will have free general admission and free seating this year. Everyone is welcome to attend! Gates open at 6 pm. For a hospitality seating package on Friday through Sunday, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 561-784-1125. Availability is limited so book your VIP weekend soon!
The Hollow Creek Farm FEI Children’s, Junior and Young Rider Nations’ Cups will be featured on Saturday, March 5. The $216,000 Lugano Diamonds CSIO 4* Grand Prix will conclude the feature events of the week on Sunday, March 6. The 12-week WEF circuit runs through April 3 offering more than $9 million in prize money.
USA’s Steve Stephens and Ken Krome are co-course designers in the International Ring for week eight’s jumper competition. The duo set the course for the opening $25,000 Nutrena Jumper Classic to begin WEF 8 on Wednesday morning with 53 entries and a 22-horse jump-off. Thirteen entries went double clear over the short course as the times steadily got faster.
Colvin and Take the High Road LLC’s Austria 2 clocked in at 33.63 seconds, just ahead of McLain Ward (USA) and his own and Arthur Hawkins’ Tina la Boheme in a time of 33.92 seconds. Paul O’Shea (IRL) and Nordic Lights Farm’s NLF Newsflash finished third in 34.98 seconds. Ian Millar (CAN) and The Baranus Group’s Baranus placed fourth in 35.37 seconds, and Alexander Zetterman (SWE) and Springfield Showjumpers’ Cordalis finished fifth in a time of 35.49 seconds.
Class winner, Austria 2, is an eight-year-old Holsteiner mare (Casall x Corrado I) that was previously ridden by Belgium’s Jonas Vervoort. The mare was purchased in Sweden when she was seven years old, and Colvin has slowly been bringing her along.
“She has not shown a lot, so we are trying to save her and start her slow, but she was fantastic today,” Colvin said following her win. “She is a spicy mare, and I love that. She is just fast, and little, and quick in the air. She is like a cat; she just slides right over the jumps, and she is amazing.”
Speaking of her winning jump-off, Colvin noted, “I have never really gone super-fast with her because she is younger, so I do not want to run her off her feet. I was planning seven strides down the last line, and it was very good in the beginning and she felt amazing, so I went for the six and she was fantastic. When I saw McLain go before me, he went really fast and I was like, ‘Oh boy.’ I was not planning on going that fast because I have never really gone for it with her, but I was feeling it today. I was ready.”
Colvin also spoke about Austria’s ride, comparing the mare to Lauren Hough’s mount Ohlala.
“It is a different ride. She is very easy, but you have to kind of let go and then hold her a bit,” Colvin described. “It is kind of like a hunter ride, but she is very spicy at the same time. She is fun. She is little, so sometimes you have to add a stride. I would compare her to Ohlala. Hopefully someday she will be that good. She is a very tiny, spicy mare. You have to package her a little bit, but she is great.”
As Austria 2 continues to develop, Colvin will continue to compete her at the 1.45m level and hopes to possibly step up to 1.50m by the end of the year.
“This was only my second 1.45m on her,” Colvin pointed out. “We have really gone slow with her because I think that she is going to be very special, so we are just trying to do it right.”
Also competing in the International Ring on Wednesday, the $5,000 Carolex Stables Welcome Stake was held in two separate classes, with a day session and an evening session. The win in the day session went to Darragh Kenny (IRL) and Kerry Anne LLC’s Glamour van de Kakebeek. The night session saw a win for Tiffany Foster (CAN) aboard Artisan Farms’ Brighton.
The eighth week of competition at the 2016 Winter Equestrian Festival continues on Thursday with the $35,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 8 featured in the International Ring. In the E. R. Mische Grand Hunter Ring, the First Year Green Working Hunter division will award championship honors for week eight. For more information and full results, please visit www.pbiec.com.