Andres Rodriguez and Fifty Fifty 111 Win $34k Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 8

Andres Rodriguez and Fifty Fifty 111. Photos © Sportfot.

Celebration and Scott Stewart Take Home the Championship Prize in Perfect Products Pre-Green Hunter Level 2

Wellington, FL – February 26, 2015 – The 2015 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) hosted show jumping for all ages and nationalities in the International Arena at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) on Thursday. Venezuela’s Andres Rodriguez and Fifty Fifty 111 won the $34,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 8 in a speed round over Kent Farrington (USA) and Blue Angel. Laura Kraut (USA) earned an incredible one-two-three finish in the morning’s 1.45m jump-off class, and the Hollow Creek Farm Children’s, Junior and Young Rider Welcome classes saw victories for Alejandra Godoy (VEN), Santiago Orifici (ARG) and Spencer Smith (USA).

The Winter Equestrian Festival’s eighth week features CSIO 4* competition on February 25 – March 1 at PBIEC. Upcoming highlights include the $10,000 Wellington Equestrian Realty Speed Stake and $100,000 Nations Cup presented by Kingsland Equestrian on Friday; the $34,000 Nutrena 1.45m Jumper Classic, $25,000 Suncast® 1.50m Championship Jumper Classic and Hollow Creek Farm Children’s, Junior and Young Rider Nations Cup classes on Saturday; and the Hollow Creek Farm Children’s, Junior and Young Rider Grand Prix classes followed by the $150,000 Grand Prix CSIO 4* presented by Lugano Diamonds on Sunday.

Anthony D’Ambrosio (USA) set the speed track in the day’s feature $34,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 8 with 62 starters and 11 clear rounds. Third in the ring, Kent Farrington and Robin Parsky’s Blue Angel set the leading time at 66.76 seconds, but were pushed to second place nine rounds later when Andres Rodriguez and Arao Enterprises LLC’s Fifty Fifty 111 crossed the timers fractions faster in 66.50 seconds. The pair’s time held on through the end to win it.

Eugenio Garza (MEX) and El Milagro’s Balloon placed third in 70.24 seconds. Kevin Babington (IRL) and Mark Q were fourth in 71.46 seconds.

For Rodriguez, the win with “Fifty” is the payoff of five years of work and dedication with the 10-year-old Belgian Warmblood mare (Action-Breaker x Major de La Cour).

“She is a very special horse for me,” the rider acknowledged. “The part that I enjoy the most in the sport is developing young horses. I got her at the end of five years old from Eric Lamaze and now she is ten. I brought her up all of the divisions. Last year in the summer I won my first international grand prix with her, and it was a very exciting moment. When you work a horse and you bring it to that level and then you end up winning, it is very satisfying. To win in a venue like this in such a big competition and have second place be one of the fastest riders of the circuit with the fastest horse is very special. For her to win this class really means more than just the victory itself to me.”

“I did watch Kent go, and I knew it was going to be hard to beat,” Rodriguez detailed. “The only place that I thought I could be better was the last line. He did eight strides to the Rolex vertical, and I did the seven. That small difference I think was just there. I saw his round, and he was fast everywhere. The only place he left a little bit of a chance for someone to beat him was on the seven strides to the last.”

Rodriguez will jump Fifty Fifty 111 in the 1.45m speed class on Saturday and has his top horse Caballito ready to jump Friday’s Nations Cup and the grand prix on Sunday. He has big plans for Fifty this summer as she gears up for the challenging jumper derbies in Spruce Meadows.

“Luckily this year we have three horses going in the big circuit, so we can choose the classes better for the horses,” Rodriguez explained. “For her, I would really want to win the derby in Calgary; that would be my main goal and that is what I am going to train her for. Here she is going to do a couple more 1.50m classes and maybe some more WEF (Challenge Cups) and then I will prepare her for Calgary. I really want to train her to become a good derby horse.”

Also showing on Thursday, Laura Kraut (USA) dominated the competition in the morning’s $8,000 1.45m jump-off class. Sixty entries showed and only four were clear to advance to the jump-off. Kraut rode three of them, finishing first, second and third. Kraut’s winning ride was aboard Julius Peter Sinnack’s Deauville S. She placed second with the Evita Group’s Nouvelle, and took third place honors riding Stars and Stripes’ Andretti S.

The Hollow Creek Farm Children’s, Junior and Young Rider Welcome classes were also held in the afternoon. Spencer Smith (USA) and Wyndmont’s IV Ever won the $1,500 Young Rider Welcome. Santiago Orifici (ARG) and Eduardo Monaco’s Dolce Vita de Longines were the winners in the $1,000 Junior Welcome, and Alejandra Godoy (VEN) and Francis Clement’s Rhea de L’Ici topped the Children’s Welcome.

Celebration and Scott Stewart Take Home the Championship Prize in Perfect Products Pre-Green Hunter Level 2

To kick off hunter action during WEF 8, Scott Stewart rode Dr. Betsee Parker’s horse, Celebration, to the tricolor ribbon in the Perfect Products Pre-Green Hunter Level 2. Celebration was first and second over fences, paired with an under saddle win. “He [Celebration] had been champion in this division earlier in the circuit,” Stewart stated, “and he went great again this week!”

Finishing behind Stewart and Celebration was Davlyn Farms’ horse, Cy Young, ridden by Tara Metzner. Metzner piloted Cy Young to a second, third, and fourth over fences, as well as a second place finish in the under saddle. The consistent performances over the two days of competition earned Cy Young reserve championship honors.

Scott Stewart and Celebration
Scott Stewart and Celebration

Celebration is a six-year-old warmblood that started doing the Pre-Green Hunter Level 2 at the beginning of the WEF circuit. Having already been in the winner’s circle, Celebration turned in winning performances again this week. “He [Celebration] went really well the first day in the Rost Arena and was very smooth over the two courses,” Stewart noted.

After having several weeks of top results, Celebration has earned some time off. Stewart commented, “We have been very happy with him [Celebration]. I think he is getting a little bored, so we are going to give him next week off so he is ready for the last few weeks of the circuit.”

Already having earned several accolades, Stewart is excited for Celebration’s future. This year the big goal is for Celebration to compete at the Pre-Green Incentive Championship, held at the Kentucky Horse Park, during the summer. Looking ahead to 2016, Stewart plans to move Celebration up to the First Year Green Working Hunters.

Competition continues in the International Arena on Friday with the $10,000 Wellington Equestrian Realty Speed Stake in the morning and the $100,000 Nations Cup presented by Kingsland Equestrian in the evening. Equitation competition will kick off with coverage of the Ariat National Adult Medal in the Rost Arena. For full results and more information, please visit

Lauren Fisher and Maddy Stover for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.

Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.

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