SAUGERTIES, NY (June 12, 2012) – Jimmy Torano continued to impress at HITS Saugerties when he captured the top prize in Saturday’s $5,000 Devoucoux Hunter Prix aboard Kathryn Haefner, LLC’s Venza to highlight HITS-on-the-Hudson III.
Torano of SW Ranches, Florida is now a repeat winner in the featured class for hunter riders as he took home top honors during HITS-on-the-Hudson I aboard Venza. On Saturday, Torano bested 64 horse-and-rider combinations that showed over Rian Beals’ first round course and the top 12 that returned for round two.
“It’s been a successful couple of weeks here in Saugerties,” said Torano. “There were more than 60 in this class and that shows how popular it has become. Anytime you need a pair of 90s to win a class shows how tight the competition really was.”
With two wins in the bag, Torano is well on his way to making an appearance in September’s Diamond Mills $500,000 Hunter Prix Final in Saugerties, New York.
In a first round that saw three scores in the 90s, Torano and Venza held the top spot after they earned a 93 from Judge Betsy Perry. Jeffrey Welles of Brewster, New York and Annette Lauer’s Bonaparte scored a 92 and Patricia Griffith of White Plains, New York aboard Lyn Pedersen’s Sutherland received a 90 to hold down the third spot.
In the second round, Torano and Venza put in another impressive performance and scored a 90 for a total of 183 to capture the blue ribbon and take the victory gallop. Welles and Bonaparte scored an 89 in round two for a total of 181 and second place. Laena Ramond of Colchester, Vermont and Lyn Pedersen’s Guess Again had a two round score of 177.5 to grab third place.
“We had nine horses in the class,” said Andre Dignelli of Heritage Farm. “Laena was great and took third. She really was right on for her second round. We should have several riders qualified for the Diamond Mills $500,000 Hunter Prix Final in September.”
Rounding out the top five was Bill Ellis aboard Four Winds Farm’s Naturally in fourth and Patricia Griffith in the irons of Kate Robsinson’s Arico in fifth.
Elizabeth Plummer and Belief capture the $1,500 HITS 3’ Hunter Prix
The Hunter Prix craze continued into Sunday when almost 40 starters took to Beals’ course in the $1,500 HITS 3’ Hunter Prix. At the conclusion of the competition it was Elizabeth Plummer of Wellington, Florida that would capture the top prize aboard her own Belief as the final months of qualifying for the HITS $250,000 Hunter Prix Final have arrived.
After round one, Plummer and Belief stood in second place after scoring an 87. The top score of the round belonged to Brittany Matters of Southampton, New York and Twin Oak Stables’ Eye Spy after they earned an 88.
Plummer and Belief were one of 12 to return for the second round and their score of 88 was enough to give them a total score of 175 and the win. Plummer and Belief’s closest competition came from Kimberly Sarrica of New York, New York aboard North Shore Equestrian Center’s J. C. Bugatti as they had a total score of 170 to finish in second place. The third award went to Caroline Sykes of Brewster, New York aboard Animation Equine’s Aston Martin.
Hunter competition and Championship Weekend qualifying will continue next month when competition resumes in Culpeper, Virginia July 4-8 and returns to HITS-on-the-Hudson July 18. To resume all of the action from the Spring season at HITS-on-the-Hudson, visit the HITS Saugerties results by clicking here.
Devoucoux, makers of fine French saddles, is proud to be the title sponsor of each and every qualifying Hunter Prix leading up to the phenomenal Diamond Mills $500,000 Hunter Prix Final. The Devoucoux Hunter Prix will be a featured event at all HITS horse shows this season as riders from around the country set out to qualify for the second-annual Diamond Mills Hunter Prix Final, which will take place September 8-9 at HITS-on-the-Hudson in Saugerties, New York.
About Diamond Mills Hotel & Tavern
Just 100 miles outside of New York City, nestled in the Village of Saugerties, Diamond Mills is a 30-room luxury hotel featuring stellar accommodations, fine dining at The Tavern and full-service events at a state-of-the art Special Events Center. Diamond Mills is a proud member of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World, an unsurpassed collection of over 520 luxury hotels around the world. Saugerties’ newest luxury hotel is also the proud sponsor of the Diamond Mills $500,000 Hunter Prix Final, which will take place at HITS-on-the-Hudson as part of the HITS Championship Weekend. For more information about Diamond Mills or the special VIP packages available to HITS-on-the-Hudson exhibitors, please visit DiamondMillsHotel.com or call 845.247.0700.