Tag Archives: Winter Equestrian Festival

McKayla Langmeier Moves Up to Win George Morris Excellence in Equitation

McKayla Langmeier and Calberon B. Photos © Sportfot.

Samuel Parot and Couscous van Orti Top $35,000 Illustrated Properties 1.45m CSI 5*

Wellington, FL – March 24, 2017 – After two rounds and a test, McKayla Langmeier of East Granby, CT emerged victorious riding Calberon B in the tenth annual George Morris Excellence in Equitation class, the highlight competition on March 24 at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL.

Thirty-nine horse and rider combinations tackled the first round course designed by Andy Christiansen Jr. and Frank Madden in the Van Kampen Covered Arena at Equestrian Village at PBIEC. Following the initial round, the top 15 riders returned for a second round, and ultimately the top four riders came back for a final test. Without the help of their trainers, the junior riders were responsible for walking the course, warming up their horses, and time management as no outside contact was allowed during the event and riders were required to turn in their cell phones at the start of the class. One groom was permitted to tend to the horse and set jumps during the warm-up.

The competitors received scores from two panels of judges and a schooling judge, who graded riders in the warm-up area and gave a score that ranged from minus two to two. Panel one consisted of Anne Kursinski and Ralph Caristo, panel two was made up of Frank Madden and Bobby Braswell, and Eric Straus acted as schooling judge.

Langmeier, who finished second in the class last year, was sitting in second place going into the final test, but after flawlessly asking all of the test’s questions, she moved up to win the blue ribbon. Ava Stearns of Chilmark, MA captured the reserve honors, while Taylor St. Jacques of Glen Allen, VA earned the third place ribbon, and Coco Fath of Fairfield, CT settled for a fourth place finish.

Madden of Old Salem Farm in North Salem, NY is a well-established figure in the equitation world and was greatly impressed with the talent demonstrated in the class.

“It was a real privilege to judge the class and be involved in building the courses,” said Madden. “I thought the test was great. I loved McKayla’s [Langmeier’s] horse landing on the right lead and making the flying change. Overall it was a great class, and I hoped the riders enjoyed the courses and the test.”

Langmeier piloted Calberon B, a nine-year-old gelding owned by Linda Langmeier, to a first round score of 179 and a second round score of 182 for an overall winning score of 361. The pair have not been partnered together long as Langmeier started showing the gelding, who previously competed in the jumpers, in equitation classes at the start of this winter circuit.

Speaking of her test, Langmeier explained, “Part of the test was to hold the counter lead, and I have had issues in tests not being able to hold it. I was going to try to go inside the hay bales, but I ended up going around. I saw in the previous tests that people held the counter lead after the second fence, but I decided do the flying change.”

Although Stearns entered the test in fourth place, her impeccable performance aboard Eclipse, an entry owned by Missy Clark & North Run, earned her the reserve honors. Stearns received first and second round scores of 174.5 and 179, respectively, for a combined score of 353.

“I had a lot of fun tonight!” Stearns exclaimed. “I have an incredible mount, Eclipse. I was really excited to get to compete in the class on him because he is so special, and he handles everything so well. He is so handy, and everything you ask of him he does perfectly, so that made it really fun.”

St. Jacques was sitting on top when the final four entered the test; however, Madden explained that her hand gallop in the test dropped her down to finish in third place. The talented junior guided Charisma, owned by Heritage Farm, Inc., to a first round score of 182, and the highest second round score, 187.5, for an overall total of 369.5. Charisma, a ten-year-old Warmblood gelding by Stakkato, won the honor of Best Equitation Horse after the first two rounds.

“Charisma was incredible today,” St. Jacques praised. “Everything I asked him to do he did perfectly, and he could not have gone any better. It was a really good class overall! The class is a different atmosphere than we are used to, and I think it is a lot of fun under the lights.”

Fath rode veteran equitation mount, Class Action, owned by Hillside Farm, LLC, to a fourth place finish. The pair earned first and second round scores of 177 and 178, respectively, for a combined total of 355.

Speaking of her first time showing in the class, Fath said, “It was such a fun experience! Not having trainers was something new and different that I have not experienced before. I rode Class Action, who has done this many times. I could not imagine doing this on any other horse. He is so special and perfect; he could basically do it by himself.”

Samuel Parot and Couscous van Orti Top $35,000 Illustrated Properties 1.45m CSI 5*

It was an emotional win for Chile’s Samuel Parot in Friday’s $35,000 Illustrated Properties 1.45m CSI 5* at the Winter Equestrian Festival, as the rider was competing his mount Couscous van Orti for the final time.

Samuel Parot and Couscous van Orti

Parot found Couscous van Orti from Belgium’s Pieter Devos in 2015 and rode the gelding at the Pan American Games in Toronto that year. The pair has since earned numerous victories and had a very successful partnership. The horse will now compete under the flag of El Salvador with rider Juan Manuel Bolanos.

Course designer Guilherme Jorge (BRA) set the speed track for 35 starters in Friday’s five-star 1.45m competition, yielding ten clear rounds. Last to go, Parot and the 15-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding (Nabab de Reve x Cash) raced to victory in 60.48 seconds.

Darragh Kenny (IRL) finished second in 62.24 seconds riding Kerry Anne LLC’s Chanel. Eric Lamaze (CAN) guided Torrey Pines Stable’s Thalis de la Roque to third place in 63.25 seconds, and Richie Moloney (IRL) placed fourth aboard Equinimity LLC’s Slieveanorra in 64.19 seconds.

“Today is the last show and the last class we will jump together because he is sold, so it is a nice goodbye,” Parot said of his mount. “I am very happy to win with him one final time.

“I was lucky to go last, so I watched a lot of riders,” Parot continued. “The course was fast and very careful. In the beginning, I went a little bit slower, but on the last part of the course I went very fast. I think where I won it was the last line. I galloped down and left out a stride to the last jump, and he did it easily.”

Also competing in the International Arena on Friday, Amy Millar (CAN) and AMMO Investments’ Heros won the $35,000 1.45m CSI 2* jump-off.

Week eleven of the Winter Equestrian Festival continues in the International Arena on Saturday featuring the $130,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic Final at 6:30 p.m. and the $500,000 Rolex Grand Prix CSI 5* on Saturday, March 25, at 7:30 p.m. The Engel & Völkers Large Junior Hunters 15 & Under will determine championship and reserve honors in the E. R. Mische Grand Hunter Arena. For full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

Paulo Santana and Taloubet Top $35k Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 11 CSI 5*

Paulo Santana and Taloubet. Photos © Sportfot.

Mindful and Kelley Farmer Crowned Champions of Antares High Performance Working Hunter

Wellington, FL – March 23, 2017 – El Salvador’s Paulo Santana and Taloubet were the winners of the $35,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 11 during CSI 5* competition on Thursday, March 23, at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL.

Course designer Guilherme Jorge (BRA) saw 55 starters over his first round course for the WEF Challenge Cup and 16 clear rounds. Just ten of the16 clear entries chose to return for the jump-off, where Paulo Santana and his veteran mount Taloubet stopped the clock in 37.47 seconds.

Lucy Deslauriers (USA) guided Lisa Deslauriers’ Hester to second place in 37.60 seconds. Jose Roberto Reynoso (BRA) placed third in 38.39 seconds riding Azrael W.

Santana and the 17-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Baloubet Du Rouet x Quidam De Revel) earned their first five-star win representing El Savador on Thursday after switching nationalities from Brazil four years ago.

“He feels better than ever,” Santana said of the horse that he has ridden for ten years. “He felt very good in the first round, and I always know that if he leaves the ring trotting or walking, we will get a good jump-off.

“In the jump-off, when there are fewer jumps in front of him, he really chases the jumps,” Santana continued. “The quieter I get, the rounder he goes, and I just need to show him where he is going and he catches every jump. It is way easier to run with him than keep him calm.”

A last minute scratch from this week’s five-star event gave Santana and Taloubet a late opportunity to jog and compete. The rider plans to jump in Saturday night’s $500,000 Rolex Grand Prix CSI 5*, and detailed Taloubet’s fitness regime and preparation as a senior horse.

“He is the kind of horse that is not going to learn anything else,” Santana noted. “We have a protocol for his final career and what he will jump. We just keep him sound and safe. When we come to the show, I do not jump him a lot in the warm-up.

“We keep him in a very high cardio and physical resistance workout,” Santana added. “I actually try to do the same things with him as I do for my workouts. We really try to keep his stamina high.  He is a hot horse, so he works himself just going to the wash rack. He is always tight. We just do what we can to push his edge to be a little bit further. He is a rock; he feels great.”

Also competing in the International Arena on Thursday, Lucy Davis (USA) and Boucherom won the $8,000 Douglas Elliman 1.45m CSI 2* speed class. The afternoon concluded with the $6,000 Illustrated Properties 1.40m Speed Challenge and a win for Darragh Kenny (IRL) riding Kerry Anne LLC’s Important de Muze.

Mindful and Kelley Farmer Crowned Champions of Antares High Performance Working Hunter

Kelley Farmer of Keswick, VA and Mindful dominated the Antares High Performance Working Hunter division and captured the championship ribbon. The pair won four out of five classes and placed second in the stake round. Mindful received scores of 87 and 85 over fences, and 89 and 88 in the handy and stake rounds.

Kelley Farmer and Mindful

Mindful, a coming 13-year-old Hanoverian gelding by Graf Grannus, is no stranger to the winner’s circle. Owned by Selma and Ken Garber’s Kensel, LLC, the gelding, who previously competed as a jumper, has several USEF Horse of the Year awards and a long list of USHJA International Hunter Derby wins to his credit.

“We have owned Mindful for four years, and we purchased him when he was a jumper,” said Selma Garber. “The transition to the hunters was very easy for him. He started out on top and has pretty much stayed there. He is extremely amenable; whatever you want to do he agrees, especially when it concerns food.”

Speaking of Farmer’s trips on the gelding, Garber continued, “Kelley had great rounds on him this week. She is such a steady performer. I love how consistent and smooth Mindful is. Plus, he has an incredible mind. Mindful and Kelley don’t disappoint!”

MTM Hands Down, owned by Beechwood Stables, LLC, and Peter Wylde of Lake Worth, FL secured the reserve title, placing second and fifth over fences, as well as winning the stake round with a score of 89. MTM Hands Down is a 14-year-old Warmblood gelding that has had a strong showing at the 2017 winter circuit in Wellington, earning championship honors in the Antares High Performance Working Hunter and the CWD Saddlery Performance Hunter 3’6″ divisions.

Competition continues on Friday featuring the $35,000 Illustrated Properties 1.45m CSI 5* speed class in the International Arena. The George Morris Excellence in Equitation Championship will determine a winner in the Van Kampen Covered Arena at the Equestrian Village (AGDF show grounds). For full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

Jessica Springsteen and Davendy S Win $35k Douglas Elliman 1.45m CSI 5* at WEF

Jessica Springsteen and Davendy S. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – March 22, 2017 – Jessica Springsteen (USA) and Davendy S topped the $35,000 Douglas Elliman 1.45m CSI 5* on March 22 at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL. The pair outraced Amanda Derbyshire (GBR) and Lady Maria BH, who finished in second place, and Kristen Vanderveen (USA) and Bull Run’s Faustino, who settled for third place.

Guilherme Jorge (BRA) is the course designer in the International Arena at PBIEC for WEF 11. Jorge set the track filled with related distances for 54 starters over the 1.45m course, held in a two-phase competition, and saw 22 double clear rounds. With the exception of Springsteen, the top six competitors finished the second phase within one second of each other.

Springsteen and Stone Hill Farm’s Davendy S sprinted around the second phase of the course, crossing the timers in 24.609 seconds, over a second and a half ahead of Derbyshire and Lady Maria BH, who left a stride out in the final line to take over the leading time just four trips earlier in 26.302 seconds. Vanderveen and Bull Run’s Faustino recorded a third-place time of 26.532 seconds.

“I knew if I jumped the water, it would give me a better line to start the second phase,” explained Springsteen. “The other area I focused on was taking my time back to the last line because it was a really tight turn and a lot of people ran into problems there. I wanted to make sure she got her eye on it.”

Out of her current mounts, Springsteen has owned Davendy S for the longest. Over their three years together, the pair has gained a reputation for being strong contenders in the speed classes and won the same class during week seven of the 2017 winter circuit.

Praising her mare, Springsteen said, “She was so good! She always shines in these speed classes, so I was definitely planning on going for it. She was really with me in every turn and at every fence, so I’m really happy with her. Every time she goes in the ring she wants to win and loves to go fast. I just try to keep her confidence up and make her happy!”

The International Arena had three other classes on Wednesday. The first class of the day, the $8,000 Illustrated Properties 1.40m CSI 2*, found a winner in Lucy Davis (USA) and Old Oak Farm’s Boucherom. The $1,000 Illustrated Properties 1.40m CSI 5* followed with Ben Maher (GBR) taking the top honors aboard It’s Real Love Vd Smis Z, owned by Poden Farms. Darragh Kenny (IRL) and Important de Muze, an entry owned by Kerry Anne LLC, concluded the day with a win in the $6,000 Illustrated Properties 1.40m.

Week eleven of the Winter Equestrian Festival continues in the International Arena on Thursday featuring the $35,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 11. The Antares High Performance Working Hunters will determine championship and reserve honors in the E. R. Mische Grand Hunter Arena. For full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

Laura Chapot Earns One-Two Finish in Suncast 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic at WEF

Laura Chapot and Quointreau un Prince. Photos © Sportfot.

Kat Fuqua and Small Suggestion Hit Their Stride in Animo Medium Pony Hunter

Wellington, FL – March 19, 2017 – USA’s Laura Chapot took first and second place in Sunday’s $35,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic to conclude week ten at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL. Chapot was aboard Quointreau un Prince for the win, and also guided Thornhill Kate to second place.

Course designer Michel Vaillancourt (CAN) concluded his duties in the International Arena for week ten with 47 starters in the 1.50m competition and 11 to jump-off. Out of six double clear rounds, Chapot first took the lead with her own and McLain Ward’s Quointreau un Prince in 34.79 seconds. She then jumped into second place aboard her own and Mary Chapot’s Thornhill Kate with a time of 35.88 seconds. Kent Farrington (USA) finished third, riding his own and Tanma Corp.’s Dublin through the timers in 36.69 seconds.

“I am thrilled,” Chapot said of her result. “I thought both horses were really on their game today, and they jumped fantastic. The jump-off was really fast, so I just took a big shot at it, and they came through for me.

“I tried to follow the same track with both of them,” Chapot said of her rounds. “There was a long distance between fence one and two, and I think that is mostly where the class was won. Once I got over fence one, I tried to really get over to fence two as quick as I could, because the rest of it you had to go by the numbers and just make the best turns you could. Both my horses are very fast, and I thought that was a place where I could use that speed to my advantage.”

Chapot has had Quointreau un Prince, a 13-year-old Selle Francais gelding (Diamant de Semilly x Rosire), since he was five years old and knows the horse extremely well. “Prince” was also given the week ten Champion Equine Insurance Jumper Style Award, presented by Laura Fetterman.

“He was really excited to show today,” Chapot said of Prince. “He has been excited all week because he loves the little bit cooler weather. I thought he was just jumping out of his skin today; he felt really super.”

Thornhill Kate is a 12-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare (Courage II x Clover Hill) that Chapot has had for just over one year.

“I think we really started to bond last summer,” Chapot said of “Kate”. “She won a bunch of grand prixs over the summer and into the fall. She was second in the 1.45m on Wednesday and jumped super again today. She is a real trier. She has a strong personality, but she uses that to her benefit in the ring.”

While Quointreau un Prince was always a naturally fast horse, Chapot has been working on developing Thornhill Kate’s speed.

“I think I have turned Kate more into a ride similar to Prince,” Chapot explained. “When I first got her, she was used to going more up and down and not quite as forward and long-strided. Now she really loves to gallop and leave out strides. She actually has a very big stride, so she is becoming more similar to Prince, who is just a pleasure to ride. You just gallop with him, and if he sees a long distance, he gets there in a heartbeat.”

Chapot plans to compete Quointreau un Prince, Thornhill Kate, and her other top mount ISHD Dual Star through the final weeks of WEF competition. She will then give her string a long break before gearing up for the Devon Horse Show in Pennsylvania at the end of May.

Also competing in the International Arena on Sunday, Sam Walker and Twan won the $10,000 Hollow Creek Farm Medium Junior Jumper Classic. The $10,000 Equiline Medium Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic concluded the day with a win for Reid Patton and Twisther.

Kat Fuqua and Small Suggestion Hit Their Stride in Animo Medium Pony Hunter

Kat Fuqua of Atlanta, GA guided Small Suggestion, an entry owned by Iwasaki & Reilly, to win the championship of the Animo Medium Pony Hunter division. Throughout the winter circuit in Wellington, Fuqua has ridden the medium pony to several good placings; however, the tricolor ribbon had eluded them. The pair won the conformation class and the handy trip and placed sixth in an over fences round to clinch the championship title.

Kat Fuqua and Small Suggestion

“My handy round was my favorite,” Fuqua detailed. “It feels really good to be champion on him because I haven’t been doing my best on him. I’m really happy I had some great rounds on him this week.”

Speaking of the nine-year-old liver chestnut gelding, Fuqua said, “His barn name is Ollie, and my favorite thing about him is that he loves to cuddle. He is very sweet. It takes a lot of leg to ride him because he can be really slow.”

Fuqua trains with Elizabeth Reilly and Keri Kampsen and started showing Small Suggestion during the summer of the 2016 season.

“[Fuqua’s] handy round was one of the nicest rounds I’ve ever seen her have,” said Kampsen. “She was much more consistent today than she has been. I’m really proud of her!”

While both Zayna Rizvi of Greenwich, CT and Augusta Iwasaki, of Calabasas, CA earned 17 points in the division, Rizvi walked away with the reserve title because she earned more points in the over fences portion. All 17 points of Rizvi’s were collected from over fences classes and Iwasaki amassed 16 points over fences aboard Isabella Griffin’s Happily Ever After.

Rizvi rode Smallwood Mystic, owned by Peacock Ridge, LLC, to win an over fences class, place third in the handy, fourth in another over fences, as well as fifth in the conformation. Smallwood Mystic is an eight-year-old Welsh Pony Cross gelding by Mapleside Wish List that Rizvi has ridden since 2015. The pair has seen much success during the 2017 winter circuit, winning the championship ribbon during weeks five, six, and eight.

The Winter Equestrian Festival continues in its eleventh week of competition on March 22-26, 2017. For more information and full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

Jose Roberto Reynoso and Galip Capture $130k Horseware Ireland Grand Prix CSI 3* at WEF

Jose Roberto Reynoso and Galip. Photos © Sportfot.

Kerry McCahill and Charly Chaplin S Top Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Grand Prix Series Semi-Final; Cassanto Wins Championship in Bruno Delgrange Large Junior Hunter 16-17

Wellington, FL – March 18, 2017 – Brazilian Olympian Jose Roberto Reynoso and Galip were the winners in Saturday night’s $130,000 Horseware Ireland Grand Prix CSI 3* during week ten at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL. The pair topped a six-horse jump-off over U.S. Olympic team silver medalist Kent Farrington and Creedance in second and young rider Eve Jobs (USA) riding Tiny Toon Semilly in third.

Course designer Michel Vaillancourt (CAN) saw 45 entries over his first round course for Saturday night action in the International Arena at PBIEC. Six combinations qualified for the jump-off, and four jumped double clear in the tiebreaker, where Reynoso and his 11-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding Galip (Nonstop x Feo) crossed the timers in 35.57 seconds for the win.

Farrington was aboard his own and RCG Farm’s Creedance for the second place finish in 36.23 seconds. Jobs rode Tiny Toon Semilly to third place honors in 37.80 seconds. Colombia’s Roberto Teran, Jr. jumped the fourth place time of 38.25 second with Brilliant du Rouet.

“I am really, really happy. It is like a dream to be here, and to come from Brazil and win something like this grand prix,” said Reynoso, who is competing at WEF for the first time. “I knew that Kent is a really fast rider. I just tried to be faster.”

Reynoso continued, “I bought Galip six months ago. Since I bought him, he has just been doing better and better. Today he was just amazing.”

Reynoso grew up in an equestrian family. His father was a successful rider, and it was Reynoso’s dream to compete at the top level. He represented Brazil in the 2012 London Olympic Games and continues to develop top horses. Reynoso made the trip to Wellington for the first time to compete against the best in the world and further develop his career in the sport.

“I came because of a dream. I did everything in Brazil that I could do, and I just wanted to try something new,” Reynoso stated. “I would like to be here with a good owner and get more horses, because I like really it here.”

Second place finisher, Kent Farrington, took an unusual fall from Creedance in last week’s grand prix and was happy to complete two good rounds with the ten-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Lord Z x Notaris) on Saturday.

“This was a recovery,” Farrington stated. “I got thrown on my head last week, so that was not ideal. I thought he jumped great in the WEF (Challenge Cup) this week, and I thought he jumped great tonight. I thought my strategy was good for the jump-off, and unfortunately, we just got beat today. I think the jump-off suited a longer-strided horse. I had to add to the oxer across the middle before the double verticals, and I think that is where I lost a bit of time.”

Third place finisher, Eve Jobs (18) was competing in her first “Saturday Night Lights” grand prix at WEF and was thrilled with her top finish.

“I was just trying to go for a really nice double clear,” she said of her jump-off plan. “I tried to set the pace as best I could. I was not going to leave out in some risky places. Like down the first line, I still did the seven strides and tried to set up for the double verticals. I tried to go clear and have a good result, so I am very happy.”

“I bought this horse about a month and a half ago from Charlotte Mordasini,” Jobs said of the ten-year-old Selle Francais gelding (Diamant de Semilly x Kannan). “Right off the bat I clicked with him, and my trainer, Eddie Macken, has just kind of been putting me in the bigger classes. It has been going really well. This was the biggest we have jumped to date, and I could not be happier. He jumped amazing.”

In addition to the third place prize, Jobs was presented the Leading Lady Rider Award for week ten, presented by Martha Jolicoeur of Douglas Elliman Real Estate.

Kerry McCahill Wins $35,000 Hollow Creek Under 25 Grand Prix Series Semi-Final, sponsored by The McNerney Family

The $35,000 Hollow Creek Under 25 Grand Prix Series Semi-Final, sponsored by The McNerney Family, was held early Saturday afternoon at the Winter Equestrian Festival with a win for Kerry McCahill (20) riding Kerry Ann LLC’s Charly Chaplin S.

Kerry McCahill and Charly Chaplin S

Thirty-seven entries started over Michel Vaillancourt’s (CAN) first round track, and 12 advanced to the jump-off. The short course yielded five double clear rounds, where McCahill and her ten-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Harley VDL x Burggraaf) clocked the fastest time of 39.35 seconds.

Alma Bjorklund (SWE) and Unex Captain Chaos 8 finished second in 40.53 seconds. Lucas Porter (USA) and Sleepy P Ranch LLC’s Diamonte Darco placed third in 40.80 seconds. Leah de Martini (USA) and Elm Rock LLC’s Firth of Lorne finished fourth in 42.84 seconds, and Emma Butchard (USA) rounded out the top five riding Brasil to a time of 43.54 seconds.

McCahill earned a third place finish in the under 25 grand prix during week two of the circuit riding Cadensky and explained that this win was a much different experience on a horse that she knows well.

“Unlike the last time I was in the top three here, that was with a very new horse I only just got in November,” McCahill stated. “In contrast, Charly Chaplin is one that I have a stronger relationship with. I have gotten some top three finishes with him in some big grand prix in Europe this year. It was our plan all along to use him for the semi-final and hopefully the final for this year, so I was really happy with the way he jumped. He is an amazing horse.”

McCahill continued, “Charly is sort of a giant. You have to give him a lot of room. He is very careful though, for such a big horse, and very sensitive. It was a bit surprising I passed the first round clear today, to be honest. Earlier in the week, he stopped twice at the water in the Welcome, so I was not quite sure what was going to happen. That was the main area that I was focusing on clearing today. He was super. I could not be happier with his performance today.”

Unex Captain Chaos 8 is a 12-year-old Holsteiner gelding (Con Air x Landaris) that Bjorklund (23) recently began riding at the end of the summer in 2016.

“I have not had him for very long. It is just now that we have kind of gotten to know each other better,” Bjorklund noted. “He is truly amazing for me. He fits me really well and makes me feel safe. Obviously today he did an amazing job.

“This is my first bigger jump-off with him,” Bjorklund added, “so I was just kind of trying to go clear. Before I went in, my trainer Eddie [Macken] was telling me that I should try to go for it, so it was kind of in between. I started off a little slow, and then as I got more comfortable, I got a little faster. He was really great.”

Porter (19) has had several top three finishes in this year’s Under 25 Series and used the opportunity to gain more experience with his trusty mare Diamonte Darco, a 12-year-old Great Britain Sport Horse (by Unbelievable Darco).

“I have been really fortunate this season. Diamonte Darco has jumped really well,” Porter stated. “Pretty much every time that I have gone out, she is ready to roll and ready to jump a clear round. Whether I make a mistake or not is really what determines whether we get into the jump-off. I have been knocking on the door, just trying to get that first ‘W’. My trainer just keeps telling me to do what I’m doing because it is clearly working, and eventually it will fall my way.”

The Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Grand Prix Series, presented by The Dutta Corp. in association with Guido Klatte, was developed as a bridge to the international level of grand prix competition. The series gives athletes, both human and equine, an opportunity to compete under a myriad of conditions, including jumping on grass, under the lights at night, and in team competition, all important elements that competitors will face as their international careers progress. The series concludes with a $50,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Grand Prix Final, which the top 30 riders in the point standings will be invited to contest on Sunday, April 2.

Also competing in the International Arena on Saturday, Madison Goetzmann and Prestigious won the $10,000 SJHOF High Junior Jumper Classic, presented by Sleepy P Ranch. Teddy Vlock and Vlock Show Stables’ Chakito were victorious in the $15,000 SJHOF High Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic, presented by Engle & Völkers.

Styslinger and Langmeier Pilot Cassanto to Championship of Bruno Delgrange Large Junior Hunter 16-17

Stella Styslinger of Birmingham, AL and Mckayla Langmeier of East Granby, CT rode Cassanto in the Bruno Delgrange Large Junior Hunter 16-17 division to earn the championship title. Styslinger rode the striking chestnut to a second place finish in the under saddle class, and on Friday, while Styslinger was away at school, Langmeier guided Cassanto to first and second place finishes over fences.

Styslinger leases the 2007 Holsteiner gelding by Canto from Float On Equestrian, LLC.

“I just started riding him,” Styslinger explained. “We saw him at [the USHJA International Hunter Derby Finals] a few years ago. He was third overall that year, and we really liked him. We found out he was for lease this year, and it is a great situation because I’m going off to college in the fall. He is really easy-going, has a great personality, [is] super friendly, and is very forgiving.”

Langmeier, who had never ridden the gelding before showing him on Friday, praised his nature.

“He is really straightforward, super scopey, and he has a big stride,” Langmeier detailed. “I know he has amazing show results. My strategy was just to have smooth and consistent rounds, and he really did a super job.”

Emma Kurtz of Wellington, FL and Stellar settled for reserve honors just one point overall behind the leader. The duo won two over fences classes and placed fifth in another. Kurtz started riding the coming seven-year-old Hanoverian mare by Quintender at the beginning of the winter circuit and has found much success with her, earning the championship title in the division during weeks four and seven.

The tenth week of the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival concludes on Sunday with the $35,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic in the International Arena. The Animo Medium Pony Hunter division will determine championship and reserve honors in Ring 12. For more information and full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

Richie Moloney and Slieveanorra Score Irish Win in $35k Illustrated Properties 1.45m at WEF

Richie Moloney and Slieveanorra. Photos © Sportfot.

Kendra Gierkink Returns to Equitation to Win Ariat National Adult Medal

Wellington, FL – March 17, 2017 – It was a win for the Irish on St. Patrick’s Day, as Richie Moloney and Slieveanorra took top prize in the $35,000 Illustrated Properties 1.45m speed class on Friday, March 17 at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL.

Course designer Michel Vaillancourt (CAN) saw 66 entries and 21 clear rounds over his 1.45m speed track. Julie Welles (USA) and Alexander LLC’s Ryanair de Riverland set a fast pace, second to go in 65.33 seconds, and eventually finished third. Laura Chapot (USA) with her own and McLain Ward’s Quointreau un Prince topped that time in 65.04 seconds and held a long lead, but settled for second place in the end. Third to last in the order, it was Irishman Richie Moloney riding Equinimity LLC’s Slieveanorra who took the win in 64.81 seconds.

The 15-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding (Voltaire x Flagmount Diamond) had a strong 2016 season and took some time off after concluding his year in November. He started back in week eight at WEF and came out fresh for his first FEI event this week.

“He is naturally a very fast horse,” Moloney said of his longtime partner. “I think I did more strides than the people before me, but his stride is so quick. He is quick across the ground, and he does not waste any time in the air. I just knew to keep going as quick as I could and I would be close enough.

“I saw Laura go,” Moloney added. “I knew it would be hard work to catch her. I saw that the top seven or eight were around 65 seconds, so I knew we had to try to win or else we could be seventh or eighth. He is just quick everywhere. She did fewer strides than me from number five to six; my horse just covered the ground faster.”

Moloney is pleased to have Slieveanorra back jumping in good form and hopes to compete the gelding in more 1.45m classes over the last two weeks of WEF competition.

Also competing in the International Arena on Friday, Christina Antonucci and Zonneglans won the $2,500 Engel & Völkers High Amateur-Owner Jumper Power and Speed. Santiago Lambre (MEX) topped the $6,000 FEI 1.40m speed class riding Dingeman. The day concluded with a win for Georgina Bloomberg (USA) and Gotham Enterprizes’ South Street in the $6,000 Illustrated Properties 1.40m Speed Challenge.

Kendra Gierkink Returns to Equitation to Win Ariat National Adult Medal

After aging out of equitation competition at the end of the 2016 show season, Kendra Gierkink of Harpswell, ME had no plans to ever compete in another equitation class. However, on Friday morning, Gierkink rode Casstess HBC to win the Ariat National Adult Medal. The class consisted of a first round and a test of the top four riders. Gierkink and Casstess HBC, owned by Kadley Holdings, LLC, earned the high score in the first round, an 88, and laid down a flawless test to take the blue ribbon.

Kendra Gierkink and Casstess HBC

The nine-year-old Holsteiner stallion by Cassiano had never competed in an equitation class before Friday, as he was previously campaigned by Gierkink’s sister, Addison Gierkink, in the Medium Amateur-Owner jumpers.

“I started riding him at the beginning of the winter circuit,” Gierkink explained. “He decided he doesn’t want to be a jumper anymore, so I’ve just been riding him at home and taking lessons. I was doing the warm-up in this ring on Tuesday and my trainer, Missy Clark, said, ‘Oh, he goes really cute; why don’t you do an Adult Medal?’ We decided to do the Ariat, and he was super!”

All four riders in the test executed the more challenging and shortened track smoothly, but Gierkink’s consistency and smoothness over both rounds helped her win the class.

Speaking of her trips, Gierkink said, “In the first round there were several options, but I decided to ride off of what I was feeling. I liked the course and my horse went around really well, he landed all the leads and was great. Testing is not always my strong suit, but I thought it was a good test!”

Catie Staszak of Boynton Beach, FL piloted Agnes Augusta, an entry owned by East Wind Farms, LLC, to the second place ribbon. The pair earned the second highest score in the first around, an 86. Rounding out the top three placings was Gabi Morris of Bridgewater, NJ. Morris guided her own Hypnotic to a first round score of 85.

Week ten of the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival continues on Saturday in the International Arena featuring the $35,000 Hollow Creek Under 25 Grand Prix Series Semi-Final, sponsored by The McNerney Family, and the $130,000 Horseware Ireland Grand Prix CSI 3*, which starts at 7:30 p.m. The Bruno Delgrange Large Junior Hunter 16-17 division will determine championship and reserve honors in the Rost Arena. For full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

Darragh Kenny and Gasper van den Doorn Win $35k Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 10

Darragh Kenny and Gasper van den Doorn. Photos © Sportfot.

Scott Stewart and Holly Orlando Earn Tricolor Ribbons in Bainbridge Green Hunter 3′

Wellington, FL – March 16, 2017 – Ireland’s Darragh Kenny jumped to victory with brand new mount Gasper van den Doorn in Thursday’s $35,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 10 at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL.

Michel Vaillancourt (CAN) set the course for Thursday’s Challenge Cup, with 78 starters and 21 clear rounds. Four entries opted not to jump-off, leaving 17 to continue on to the short course. Kenny and Vlock Show Stables’ Gasper van den Doorn jumped the fastest of eight double clear rounds in 38.13 seconds.

Marilyn Little (USA) and Karen O’Connor’s Clearwater finished second in 40.05 seconds. Jimmy Torano (USA) placed third with Missy Clark and North Run’s Betagravin in 40.14 seconds. Stephanie Macieira (BRA) and Bonne Chance Farm’s Randon Pleasure placed fourth in 41.26 seconds, and Eve Jobs (USA) riding Tiny Toon Semilly rounded out the top five in 41.65 seconds.

“I did a turn that nobody else did in the class,” Kenny said of his winning jump-off. “I watched a few people go, and I kept looking when I was in the warm-up ring. I was like, ‘I think that turn is there.’ Then I went in the ring and I saw it. He is such a nice horse that I know he is never going to stop or do anything wrong, so it was only up to me to get the right distance. Then I did everything that everybody else did. I think that turn was where I won the class.”

Kenny, who just began riding Gasper van den Doorn two weeks ago, has a gift for quickly forming winning partnerships with his horses. Kenny’s student, Teddy Vlock, purchased the 11-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding (Calvaro x Larome) from 2008 Canadian Olympic team silver medalist Mac Cone, and plans to ride the horse in the future. Gasper was both the 2015 and 2016 Canadian Show Jumping Reserve Champion with Cone.

“I was just playing about with him for a couple of weeks just trying to get to know him a little bit for Teddy,” Kenny noted. “I am now very lucky that Teddy has agreed to let me show him for a few more weeks because I am a little bit short of a grand prix horse.

“Today he was really excellent,” Kenny continued. “I have only jumped him 1.40m before this, but he jumped big classes with Mac Cone before. He jumped clear in World Cup qualifiers at Deeridge and Toronto. He is a really exceptional horse.”

Detailing the horse further, Kenny stated, “He is really fun and super competitive. He is very easy. He is like the perfect horse. He is beautiful to ride; he has this amazing canter, and his jumps are fantastic. He is a really cool horse.”

Kenny and Gasper van den Doorn can be seen back in action together in Saturday night’s $130,000 Horseware Ireland Grand Prix CSI 3*.

Also competing in the International Arena on Wednesday, Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum (GER) and Daisy won the $8,000 Illustrated Properties 1.45m.

The $10,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Grand Prix Series Welcome was held in the afternoon with a win for Katherine Strauss (USA) and All In. The Series also hosted a 1.40m competition, which saw a win for Kerry McCahill (USA) and Charly Chaplin S.

Scott Stewart and Holly Orlando Earn Tricolor Ribbons in Bainbridge Green Hunter 3′

Scott Stewart of Wellington, FL and Playbook, an entry owned by Fashion Farm, were champions of the Bainbridge Green Hunter 3′ division. Stewart and the coming seven-year-old Warmblood gelding by Samba Hit dominated the division, winning three over fences classes and the under saddle, as well as placing second in another over fences round. The pair has been strong contenders in the division throughout the winter circuit, earning the championship title during weeks one, three, and eight.

Scott Stewart and Playbook

Speaking of Playbook, Stewart said, “He is really easy and has a big stride. He moves and jumps incredible and is just the whole package! I rode him in Kentucky in the Baby Greens last May, and he didn’t show again until coming down to Wellington. He has been amazing.”

Holly Orlando of Wellington, FL captured the reserve title aboard Lion King. The duo earned two seconds, third, and fifth place ribbons over fences, and fourth place under saddle. An entry of Sam Edelman’s S & L Farms, Lion King began his hunter career with Orlando at the beginning of the winter circuit as he previously competed in the Five-Year-Old jumper division.

“Lion King is one of my favorite horses,” said Orlando. “He is a very good jumper and is so my type: very soft, carries himself, and looks beautiful through the bridle. I can really gallop out of the turns on him, and he jumps the same every time.”

Orlando was quick to credit much of the six-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding’s success to Nathanael Estes, who works for Sam Edelman.

“I couldn’t do it without Nate [Estes],” Orlando explained. “He helps ride Lion King and is an excellent person to have on the ground. Nate puts a lot of effort into the horse, and we are both really excited about the gelding.”

Competition continues on Friday featuring the $35,000 Illustrated Properties 1.45m speed class in the International Arena. The Ariat National Adult Medal will determine a winner in the Rost Arena. For full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

Laura Kraut and Caelle Win $35,000 Douglas Elliman 1.45m at WEF

Laura Kraut and Caelle. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – March 15, 2017 – U.S. Olympic team gold medalist Laura Kraut was victorious riding Caelle in the $35,000 Douglas Elliman 1.45m speed class to open week ten on Wednesday, March 15, at the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) in Wellington, FL.

Michel Vaillancourt (USA) set the speed track for 69 starters in the morning’s 1.45m and saw 20 clear rounds. Kraut rode Stars and Stripes’ Caelle, an eight-year-old Zangersheide mare (Clinton x Darco), to the winning time of 62.25 seconds. Laura Chapot (USA) placed second in 62.31 seconds riding her own and Mary Chapot’s Thornhill Kate. Emily Moffitt (GBR) crossed the timers in 63 seconds to place third riding Poden Farm’s Zagahorn. Lisa Goldman jumped into fourth place in 63.15 seconds aboard Barbara Disko’s Sovereign. Chapot also took fifth place honors, riding her own and McLain Ward’s Quointreau un Prince to a time of 63.26 seconds.

“I am really pleased,” Kraut said of Caelle. “I got her at the end of her six-year-old year and just spent last year doing the seven-year-olds. This was her first time ever jumping FEI, so she is off to a good beginning.

“She is wonderful,” Kraut continued. “She is super brave, she is so fast, and she is just very competitive. This morning, even though it is her first time jumping in an FEI 1.45m class, I knew she would not have any issues. I just went as quick as I thought I needed to, and she is so fast.”

Detailing her winning round, Kraut stated, “Michel Vaillancourt set a nice course this morning. It was a few sharp turns and then quite a nice gallop across the ring a couple of times, which she does well. It was tricky enough. The triple combination was difficult to gallop in; it was a big vertical to vertical and then an oxer. She handled that well. Really, I just tried to be as neat and quick as I could. Then towards the end of the course, I took a little bit of a pull and slowed her down just because she does not know still about going flat out at that height of jump, but she responded. I am just very happy with her.”

Caelle will jump again in Friday’s 1.45m competition. Kraut is taking her time bringing the mare along and hopes to step her up to 1.50m later this season.

Also competing in the International Arena on Wednesday, Amber Harte (USA) and Austria 2 won the $6,000 Illustrated Properties 1.40m speed class. Georgina Bloomberg (USA) and Gotham Enterprizes’ South Street were victorious in the $6,000 Illustrated Properties 1.40m Power and Speed.

Week ten of the Winter Equestrian Festival continues in the International Arena on Thursday featuring the $35,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 10 and $10,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Grand Prix Series Welcome. For full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

NBC Sports Network to Broadcast $380k Suncast Grand Prix CSI 5* on Sat., March 18

Photo copyright Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – March 13, 2017 – Equestrian Sport Productions is pleased to announce that the five-star event from the seventh week of the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival will be broadcast on NBC Sports Network on Saturday, March 18, at 5-6 p.m. EST. Watch live or set your DVR – don’t miss this grand prix action!

The $380,000 Suncast® Grand Prix CSI 5*, which was held on February 25, features the world’s best show jumpers in one of the most anticipated events of the season at the Winter Equestrian Festival.

The broadcast is a great opportunity for fans from all over the country to watch the best equestrian sport in the United States and for sports fans of all types to become familiar with equestrian athletes from the U.S. and abroad. Use the NBC Sports Network Channel Finder to find NBC Sports Network in your area, and tune in.

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

Equestrian Sport Productions and Palm Beach Equine Clinic Address Sick Horse Information at WEF

Wellington, FL – March 14, 2017 – Equestrian Sport Productions (ESP) and Palm Beach Equine Clinic, the official veterinarians of the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL, were recently made aware by a competitor’s veterinarian that a horse stabled off the horse show grounds has tested positive for equine influenza.

This horse has been isolated along with other in-contact horses under the supervision of their veterinarian. The horse was appropriately vaccinated and is no longer febrile or showing clinical signs of disease.

This horse tested negative for equine herpes and strangles, and at this time there are no confirmed cases of equine herpes at WEF. As it has always been the standard practice, ESP and Palm Beach Equine Clinic, along with competitors’ veterinarians, are prepared to isolate and test any further horses with fevers of unknown origin and will update competitors as necessary.

We thank everyone for being responsible in reporting such cases. As competitors are vaccinating this time of year to prepare for travel leaving Wellington, fevers may happen. We remind all competitors the importance of hygiene and biosecurity, with suggested protocols listed below.

If you have any further questions or concerns, please contact your veterinarian or the horse show office at 561-793-5867. Questions may also be directed to Palm Beach Equine Clinic at 561-793-1599.

Further information will be updated as it becomes available.

BIOSECURITY SUGGESTIONS

An integral part of a showing environment includes healthy horses.  Exhibitors, especially those traveling long distances, can contribute to that healthy environment by following some basic recommendations listed below.

  1. A current negative Coggins test. Please renew before it expires, and not just before it is necessary to leave the state. It is strongly recommended that all horses be vaccinated for Equine EHV-1 (either modified live or killed vaccine) no sooner than 7 days prior and no later than 90 days prior to entering the show grounds. Most EHV-1 vaccines are only considered effective for 90 days. Check with your veterinarian about which vaccine you use.
  2. A health certificate within 48 hours is required for all horses shipping onto the property. All horses should be able to produce proof of vaccine, preferably labeled on these health certificates. Those who need health certificates when they arrive can contact Palm Beach Equine Clinic at 561-793-1599 or contact PBEC vets on the show grounds.
  3. You should be able to document your horse’s normal temperature before arrival. Please do not ship horses with elevated temperatures. It is recommended that you establish a log of temperatures taken at least twice daily. If there is an elevated temperature for more than a 24 hour period, please consult your local Veterinarian immediately.
  4. Every effort should be made to minimize stress and commingling of horses shipped long distances. Extra hours on a horse van, or moving from stable to stable, is the fastest way to compromise your horses’ and your neighbors’ horses’ health.
  5. Any horse on the show grounds with a fever of unknown origin or of suspicious origin should be reported to Equestrian Sport Productions Management. It is always better to err on the side of safety. Isolation stalls will either be available on the grounds or at a local veterinary practice if the need arises.
  6. Please take the time to review equine good hygiene practices and express its importance to your grooms in everyday care.

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