Tag Archives: Peter Lutz

Carlos Hank Guerreiro Dominates the Field for Hermès Under 25 Grand Prix Victory

Carlos Hank Guerreiro and H5 Quantador 3. Photo © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – February 16, 2020 – The sixth week of the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) closed with victory for Mexico’s Carlos Hank Guerreiro in the $25,000 Hermès Under 25 Grand Prix on the grass Derby Field at Equestrian Village (home to the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival) on Sunday, February 16.

Fifty of the future stars of show jumping took to the grass Derby Field with nine jumping double-clear over a course designed by Ana Catalina “Catsy” Cruz Harris (MEX). It was 19-year-old Guerreiro who bested the competition with nearly two seconds to spare riding H5 Quantador 3, owned by H5 Stables.

“I love this field,” said Guerreiro, who trains with Brazilian Olympian Eduardo Menezes and has been competing in the Under 25 division for four years. “I find that it’s a bit of different feeling, but I grew up riding on a lot of grass arenas, so I really like big, open spaces. I love this week!”

Guerreiro has had the ride on H5 Quantador 3 since the 12-year-old Westphalian gelding’s seven-year-old season. “Paul Schockemöhle sent him to me to be sold, but in the end, they let me keep him,” recalled Guerreiro. “I always say, it’s the best deal I have ever had.”

Peter Lutz Saves Best for Last to Claim $25,000 CP Grand Prix Win

Peter Lutz (USA) kept the horse sport fans who lined the Derby Field banks guessing by posting the fastest jump-off time of the day as the last to compete from a field of 26 in the $25,000 CP Grand Prix to close out week six jumper competition.

Six horses advanced to the jump-off to vie for a piece of the top prize. Lutz and Quinta 106 cantered onto the field as the last to go and executed a clean, tight turn to the final line to secure the win in 36.908 seconds. The time bumped Jazz Johnson Merton (USA) into second place with a time of 37.698 seconds aboard her own Corona SB.

“Any opportunity I have to show on this field, I always take it,” said Lutz. “It’s a beautiful place to show with great footing and great environment. I think the horses do well here, but [Quinta 106] excelled today.”

Lutz has had the ride on the Swede Ventures’-owned Quinta 106, a 13-year-old Holsteiner mare (Quidam de Revel x Cento), for a year. “She’s a really competitive horse, very experienced, and scopey. I’m really happy to have the ride!”

Tracy Scheriff-Muser, Raina Swani, and Sterling Malnik Conclude WCHR Week with Wins

World Championship Hunter Rider (WCHR) Week came to a close on Sunday, with Tracy Scheriff-Muser and Bode Well, Raina Swani and Knightly, and Sterling Malnik and Charlie claiming concluding-day victories in the $5,000 Peggy Cone Memorial WCHR Hunter Classic and the $5,000 WCHR Junior Hunter 3’3” Classic.

Eighty-eight horse-and-rider combinations were present to display their final efforts in the $5,000 Peggy Cone Memorial WCHR Adult Hunter Classic.

Heading into round two, Scheriff-Muser and Bode Well held the highpoint score of 90, and the pair replicated their performance in round two to earn an additional score of 90 for a 180 total.

“I started riding this horse this summer because I live in Florida all year long, so whatever I can find to ride to keep in shape during the off season, I will,” explained Scheriff-Muser of Melissa Burns’ nine-year-old Zweibrucker gelding (Apiro x Desprit).

The $5,000 WCHR Junior Hunter 3’3” Classic saw 59 competitors and was held in a California-split format. Ultimately, it was Raina Swani aboard Knightly who took home the victory for Section A. The pair received two scores of 88 for a total high score of 176.

“It just feels so special,” said Swani. “Going in last was definitely a bit nerve-wracking but Knightly was such a good girl. She has a great canter and great pace around the ring and a great expression. She’s a really fun horse!”

Taking the top spot in Section B was Sterling Malnik and Charlie with scores of 82 and 88 for a total score of 170.

“It’s a really big deal!” said Malnik of her successful day. “I actually won the [WCHR Large Pony Classic] today too. They were dreams of mine!”

For full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

Gallagher/Meller Mounts Dominate Pan American CSI5* at Spruce Meadows

Peter Lutz and Retiro – photo courtesy of SportFot.

Calgary, Alberta – July 5, 2017 – Spruce Meadows is one of the top destinations for the world’s elite show jumping athletes. For the team at Gallagher/Meller, it has become a staple on their summer calendar, and during the Pan American CSI5* tournament Peter Lutz piloted Robin De Ponthual and Retiro to top finishes for the United States and owners Katherine Gallagher and M. Michael Meller.

On Sunday, just over a year after their victory in the 2016 $375,000 CP Grand Prix CSI5*, Lutz and Robin De Ponthual scored the second place prize in the $380,000 Pan American CSI5* Grand Prix, presented by Rolex. The pair was the first to return for the three-horse jump-off, setting the pace with a clear effort in 53.97 seconds, which would be good enough for second place honors.

“The course was tough, but Robin likes this ring and did well here last year,” noted Lutz. “He’s been good since we’ve been here, and everything fell into place today. The course designer, Peter Grant, used the entire field and I think that suits Robin. He has a big stride and covers a lot of ground. Going first I was a little bit tentative. I really wanted to put the clear in and put the pressure on the others. It was a really great jump-off and Robin jumped beautifully.”

The top finish on Sunday came just one day after Lutz and Retiro scored the third place award in the Friends of the Meadow Cup. “Sometimes that’s a nice turning point,” said Lutz. “If another horse does well it keeps the momentum going. Everyone was really positive and in a good frame of mind today, and I think that’s really important.”

On Saturday, 11 horses qualified for the jump-off during the 1.50m classic, with six producing a second clear effort. Lutz and Retiro clocked in at 45.26 seconds with all of the rails intact, just two seconds off the leader’s winning pace for third place honors.

“I was so happy with Retiro,” expressed Lutz. “He has had some really good rounds and had just one rail down the day before, so he was really on his game. I feel like I’ve gotten to know him this year and I’ve really developed a partnership with that horse. He’s gotten physically stronger and I know him better.”

Lutz concluded, “It all comes down to believing in the team and having a good partnership with the horse. That’s clicked this year with that horse. I really trust him and I know him.”

The team includes owner and trainer M. Michael Meller, who was thrilled to have both horses achieve such outstanding performances at the world-class venue. “This has been a wonderful week for the team here. We made a plan for this week and it really paid off. Peter, Robin and the entire team have worked really hard and it is exciting to see it all come together like this.”

The Gallagher/Meller team will continue to compete at Spruce Meadows before heading back to the United States for the Hampton Classic and the American Gold Cup. The Gallagher/Meller team would like to thank all of their sponsors for all of their support, including EquiFit, CWD, KEP Italia, Galante, Fabbri Boots, Equine Omega Complete, Equi In Style, Superior Equestrian and Éce Equestrian. For more information about the team, please visit www.gallaghermeller.com.

Contact: Rebecca Walton
phone 561.753.3389 fax 561.753.3386

Robin de Ponthual and Peter Lutz Earn Silver in FEI Nations Cup Debut at Coapexpan

Peter Lutz and Robin de Ponthual. (Photo: Anwar Esquivel)

Xalapa, Mexico – May 10, 2017 – After a successful season in Wellington competing at the Winter Equestrian Festival with Peter Lutz, Gallagher/Meller Sport Horses’ Robin de Ponthual took some time to relax before returning to the show ring in top form to participate in their first FEI Nations Cup™ competition at CSIO4* Coapexpan in Xalapa, Mexico.

Lutz and the 12-year-old Selle Français gelding, along with owner and trainer M. Michael Meller who was onsite throughout the event, kicked off their week in Mexico with a clear round in the Welcome Class on Thursday, which provided as a nice warm-up around the big grass field heading in to Friday’s Nations Cup.

Alongside Quentin Judge, Adrienne Sternlicht, Alison Robitaille and Chef d’Équipe Robert Ridland, Lutz and Robin de Ponthual contributed to Team USA’s silver medal finish in the FEI Nations Cup™ CSIO4* Coapexpan on Friday. The Hermès U.S. Show Jumping Team finished on a total of 17 penalties, just one point behind the gold medal-winning Mexico team. Yet Friday’s performances were enough to keep Team USA at the top of the North America, Central America and Caribbean standings heading into the division final at CSIO3* Langley May 31 – June 4.

The pair’s success continued on Sunday as they captured seventh place in the prestigious Grand Prix Veracruz CSI4*, while the rest of Team USA also collected top 10 finishes.

“Coapexpan was a great experience,” said Lutz. “It was such a nice team to be a part of. Robert Ridland is such a pleasure to work with and was a great chef d’équipe. Michael and I had a great experience. Robin did very well and jumped a beautiful clear round on Sunday. He got better each time he showed. We were so happy with the way he closed out the show on Sunday in the grand prix.”

Lutz first donned the pinque coat during the 2016 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final in Gothenburg, Sweden, where he and Robin de Ponthual finished among the top 20 in the world. After a successful winter season and Nations Cup debut, the pair is prepared to continue to represent the United States on the world stage.

Next, Lutz and Meller will head to the Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows to continue to campaign the rest of Gallagher/Meller Sport Horses’ up-and-coming North American show jumpers, Retiro, Cheri de Papignies and Sam 1091, before joining Robin de Ponthual at Spruce Meadows, where the pair won the $375,000 CP Grand Prix CSI5* in 2016, in June.

Katherine Gallagher and Meller founded Gallagher/Meller Sport Horses to support Lutz and his top horses in North America. For more information, please visit www.gallaghermeller.com.

Contact: Rebecca Walton
phone 561.753.3389 fax 561.753.3386

Peter Lutz Opens CSIO 4* with a Win at WEF

Peter Lutz and Cheri de Papignies. Photos © Sportfot.

Wellington, FL – March 1, 2017 – USA’s Peter Lutz opened CSIO 4* competition during week eight of the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) with a win in the $5,000 Lugano Diamonds Welcome riding Cheri de Papignies at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL.

Ken Krome (USA) is the course designer for competition in the International Arena during week eight. Krome set the speed track for 57 starters in the day session of the $5,000 Lugano Diamonds Welcome class with 12 clear rounds. Halfway through the order, Peter Lutz and QBS Equestrian LLC’s Cheri de Papignies set the winning time of 63.02 seconds. Alberto Sanchez-Cozar (MEX) finished second riding his own Wupp to a time of 63.67 seconds. Isabel Roman-Karajan (AUT) guided Elia Roman’s Ratina 193 to third place in 64.62 seconds. Chloe Reid (USA) and Live Oak Plantation LLC’s Donald 550 rounded out the top four in 64.88 seconds.

Class winner Cheri de Papignies is a nine-year-old Belgian Sport horse gelding (Copin van de Broy x Darco) that Lutz and Michael Meller purchased together last fall through Belgium’s Francois Mathy.

“We are really very excited about him,” Lutz stated. “We took him to a few horse shows this fall at indoors. He went to Harrisburg, and then he came down here. He did his first grand prix here out on the derby field two weeks ago with one down. He has also been doing really well in these speed classes. This is his first FEI week with us, and we are so excited. We hope he will be our next grand prix horse.”

Remarking on his winning round, Lutz detailed, “He is a very talented horse. He is very scopey and very fast. He covers a lot of ground. He is a very big horse, so I do not think he appears quick, but he is actually pretty fast. I did eight strides from (jumps) one to two. That was quick, and that is where he can just cover the ground. I also did eight strides after the water. I just tried to stay neat everywhere, and I really galloped to the last jump.”

Cheri will jump again in Saturday’s $35,000 Douglas Elliman 1.45m Classic, while Lutz has other top horses Robin de Ponthual and Retiro that will also share in the competition this week.

Lutz was proud to hear the U.S. anthem played and watch the flag be raised in honor of his win to open international competition this week.

“It is always special to win during CSIO week. It is a big week for the team, and I am so happy to help contribute whenever I can,” Lutz concluded.

A second session of the $5,000 Lugano Diamonds Welcome was also held in the evening under the lights, with a win for Laura Chapot (USA) riding her own and Mary Chapot’s Calafornia.

Also competing in the International Arena on Wednesday, the $6,000 Illustrated Properties 1.40m was held in a California Split, with a win for McLain Ward (USA) and Sagamore Farm’s Calvados in Section A, and Laura Chapot (USA) aboard Mary Chapot’s Shooting Star in Section B.

Week eight continues on Thursday with a busy day of competition in the International Arena. The $25,000 Nutrena Jumper Classic will begin the day, followed by the $35,000 Ruby et Violette WEF Challenge Cup Round 8. The $10,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Welcome will conclude the day with a speed class. For full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.

Robin de Ponthual and Peter Lutz Win $375,000 CP Grand Prix CSI5* at Spruce Meadows

Robin de Ponthual and Peter Lutz. Photo By: SportFot.

Calgary, Alberta – June 19, 2016 – When Katherine Gallagher and Michael Meller purchased Robin de Ponthual for Peter Lutz two years ago, they had high hopes for the talented gelding. On Sunday, those dreams came to fruition as the pair galloped to their first CSI5* victory during the $375,000 CP Grand Prix at Spruce Meadows.

Lutz and Robin de Ponthual’s partnership really came together over the last year with a win in the Las Vegas World Cup Grand Prix and a top 20 finish at the Longines FEI Show Jumping World Cup Finals in Gothenburg, Sweden. However, on Sunday, they scored their biggest victory yet when they topped the three-horse jump-off in the $375,000 CP Grand Prix CSI5*.

“Spruce Meadows is an incredible international venue where you compete against some of the best athletes in the world,” said Meller. “I am so proud of Peter and Robin. They have an amazing partnership and they really rose to the occasion here.”

Thirty-two athletes turned out for the week’s highlight event, but only three were able to complete the first round course without error. Charlie Jacobs and Cassinja S set the time to beat as the first to return for the tiebreaker with a clear round. Lutz and Robin de Ponthual were last to return, and Lutz knew they would need to be clear and efficient to take home the win.

“Charlie didn’t make it easy, but I knew there were a couple places that I could be a little tighter,” explained Lutz. “We were just committed to going for the win, going a little bit faster and taking a shot.”

Lutz continued, “Robin really felt like he was on great form this week. He was good last week, but I think both of us just needed to take in the environment and the atmosphere. We both learned from experience last week. This week we felt really comfortable and more relaxed. Robin really jumped beautifully today and I was so proud of him.”

Earlier in the week, Lutz and the 11-year-old Selle Français gelding placed third in Friday’s Scotiabank Cup with one time fault. Only one athlete was faultless during Friday’s difficult class. Lutz also competed aboard Retiro on Saturday, continuing the top results for Gallagher and Meller with a double clear and fourth place finish in the 1.50m Repsol Cup.

Peter Lutz and Retiro
Peter Lutz and Retiro

“We’re really pleased with Retiro’s progress,” noted Lutz. “He has just been getting better and better each show. Yesterday, there were not many clear. He jumped the height easily and we feel like we are really getting to know him. He was especially good in the jump-off.  He is learning to turn and gallop to the jumps so I was really pleased with him.”

Meller concluded, “This has been an incredible week for the team here. There was a big learning curve last week, but we made a plan for this week and it really paid off. Peter, Robin and the entire team have worked really hard for this win, and it is so exciting to see it all come together like this.”

While Robin de Ponthual and Retiro compete in North America, E2 Show Jumpers will also continue to compete with their talented group of horses in Europe with riders Stacy Babes and Dan Walsh. Founded by Katherine Gallagher, Michael Meller and Dan Walsh, the mission of E2 Show Jumpers is to find and produce some of the world’s top young show jumping mounts.

For more information, please visit E2ShowJumpers.com.

Contact: Rebecca Walton
phone 561.753.3389 fax 561.753.3386

CP Grand Prix Victory Goes to Peter Lutz and Robin de Ponthual at Spruce Meadows ‘Continental’

Peter Lutz and Robin de Ponthual. Photos by Spruce Meadows Media Services.

Calgary, AB, Canada – It was a picture perfect day for the biggest event of the Spruce Meadows ‘Continental CSI 5* Tournament, and it was a storybook ending for Peter Lutz (USA) and Robin de Ponthual, who scored their biggest victory together in the $375,000 CP Grand Prix. Second place went to Charlie Jacobs (USA) with Cassinja S, while Andrew Ramsay (USA) and California 62 were third. This marked the final day of the Spruce Meadows ‘Continental’ Tournament, the second of four weeks in the 2016 Spruce Meadows Summer Series.

Thirty-three entries contested a course designed by Luc Musette of Belgium. There were only three who found the ticket to a clear round and would advance to the jump-off. While there were 10 competitors who had just four faults, the rails down were spread out around the course.

“That’s the measure of a good course designer, when there isn’t a bogey or a gotcha fence,” said Jacobs. “The oxers, specifically, I thought were quite wide, especially when you consider the last line was a very skinny vertical in a quite steady five (strides) to a 1.80m wide oxer. It was a challenge, and it asked a lot of us.”

Musette, in his first time designing at Spruce Meadows, said, “It’s a first experience for me (at Spruce Meadows), and it’s the best experience. It is the best in the world.”

The first in the jump-off was Charlie Jacobs with Cassinja S, a ten-year-old Zweibrucker mare (Carinjo x Cassini I). They had a steady ride through the course to finish in 41.87 seconds and no faults.

Jacobs started riding Cassinja S as a seven-year-old, and she competed in the National division at Spruce Meadows last year. These past two weeks at Spruce Meadows were the mare’s first CSI 5* competitions.

Charlie Jacobs and Cassinja S
Charlie Jacobs and Cassinja S

“It’s been a real fulfilling experience, especially today, to come out here and jump a course of this magnitude and this delicate and have such a wonderful turnout,” said Jacobs.

Jacobs felt that Cassinja’s education has grown in those two weeks. He noted, “If you talk to fellow horsemen and say that you brought a horse to Spruce Meadows and they did well, it’s a very high watermark that knowledgeable horse people acknowledge and respect. This is a place to bring a horse to season.”

“It’s a pleasure to be here,” he said of Spruce Meadows. “It’s especially nice that my son was in the audience today, today being Father’s Day. He and I came up here and spent the two weeks riding horses together, so it’s been a great experience.”

Next in the jump-off was Ramsay on California 62. The 12-year-old Holsteiner mare (Cassini I x Quidam de Revel) raced through the course, but the speed caught up to them at the second to last jump on course. They finished on four faults in 39.72 seconds for third place.

California 62 is a new ride for Ramsay, who only started with her at the beginning of the year.

He said, “This is by far the biggest accomplishment so far. She’s quite careful and limited on stride, so we’re working on that. The lines had a lot of options, which worked for us today. She’s a wonderful mare, and I think we’ll have to keep getting used to each other.”

Lutz could not go easy in the jump-off, as he had to go clear and quicker than Jacobs. He did just that, finishing in 40.43 seconds and no faults for the win. “I think I was a little faster to the second jump and also to the ‘All Canada’ jump. I took a gallop at it. On the way to last jump, it just felt like it came up perfectly,” he recalled.

Lutz has been riding Robin de Ponthual, an 11-year-old Selle Francais gelding (Elf D’or x Calypso D’Herbiers*Ecolit) owned by Michael Meller and Katherine Gallagher, for two years. This is their biggest victory together, but they have steadily been rising in the ranks of show jumping. They won a World Cup qualifier in Las Vegas in 2015 and completed a clear round at the 2016 FEI World Cup Finals.

He described, “We’ve built a nice relationship, and I know that I can trust the horse. I know that he can jump any size jump. He’s very brave, and I think he trusts me. We have a good bond. It’s nice to have a horse for two years. I know he can do anything and he believes he can too, so it’s a good match.”

Lutz competed at Spruce Meadows two years ago, but in the National division. He was very excited to gain such a prestigious victory.

“It’s just an incredible facility,” he said. “It’s exciting to be here, doing this level, with this great horse. This horse has been great for us for almost two years now. He’s been stepping up to this level. He’s showing us he can do it. But to actually come here and win is thrilling for us.”

The 2016 Spruce Meadows Summer Series continues with the ‘Pan American’, presented by Rolex, CSI 5* Tournament on June 29 – July 3.

For more information and full results, please visit www.sprucemeadows.com.

Spruce Meadows Media Services

Jennifer Wood
Jump Media

Callan Solem Places Seventh at Longines FEI World Cup Jumping Final

Callan Solem and VDL Wizard (Claes Jakobsson)

Gothenburg, Sweden – The 2016 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final concluded this afternoon with 26 starters entering the Scandinavium Arena for day three’s round one. Twenty combinations moved forward to round two, taking on challenging tracks set by course designer Santiago Varela Ullastres. Impressing in their FEI World Cup™ Final debut, Callan Solem and VDL Wizard finished the day as the top-placed American combination in seventh place. Also representing the U.S. in the final round were Peter Lutz and Robin de Ponthual who placed 19th and Rich Fellers and Flexible who finished tied for 22nd.

Entering round one tied for sixth on five faults, Solem (Glenmoore, Pa.) and Horseshoe Trail Farm, LLC’s VDL Wizard had an unlucky rail at fence one, but otherwise put on a masterclass performance. Returning 12th in the order on nine faults in round two, the pair proved their mettle, putting in a foot perfect clear round.

“He [VDL Wizard] should have been double-clear, but I was a bit slow getting to the first fence. It was totally my fault. But even with the first fence down, we kept fighting, which I think is so important. And then he came back in round two and was perfect. He is the best,” said Solem.

Lutz (Goldens Bridge, N.Y.) and Katherine Gallagher and M. Michael Meller’s Robin de Ponthual began round one tied for 10th on eight faults. They had an unfortunate start to round one, downing the wall at fence three, then added eight more faults to their score for a total of 12, qualifying for round two on 20 total faults. In round two, Robin de Ponthual showcased great scope, but had three rails down over the massive track to finish in 19th.

Peter Lutz and Robin de Ponthual (Claes Jakobsson)
Peter Lutz and Robin de Ponthual (Claes Jakobsson)

“I was a bit unlucky in the first round. Robin has been great all week, but he was totally surprised by the wall. So we had a bit of a rough start, but I think he recovered quite well and jumped the rest of the course fine, just a little distracted by what had happened. He finished really well also, just had some of his inexperience show in round two. All the scopey tests of the course, he sailed over them,” said Lutz.

The day capped off a successful week for the pair, representing the U.S. and competing in the FEI World Cup™ Final for the first time. “I learned so much here. I came here wondering how big the jumps were going to be, and they were big, but now I know that my horse can do it and that we can do it,” said Lutz.

Competing in their seventh Final, Rich Fellers (Sherwood, Ore.) and Harry and Mollie Chapman’s Flexible were in 25th place on 18 faults entering round one. The 20-year-old stallion demonstrated once again that age is only a number, jumping a smart round and adding one rail to their overall total. The pair did not qualify for round two, placing 22nd overall.

With the top five on the leaderboard beginning the day within four faults of each other, it proved to be an exciting and tense battle for the Champion title. After clear round one jumping efforts from Steve Guerdat (SUI) with Corbinian, Harrie Smolders (NED) with Emerald N.O.P., and Daniel Deusser (GER) with Cornet d’Amour, the three sat atop the leaderboard within three faults of each other with Guerdat on zero, and Smolders and Deusser on three. In a nail-biting end to the Final, both Smolders and Deusser jumped clear in round two to put the pressure on Guerdat. The 2015 Champion, Guerdat, emerged the victor, defending his title after a faultless final round. Smolders took second place overall based on a faster round two time, while Deusser placed third.

By Leah Oliveto

Phelps Media Group Wishes Good Luck to Clients at World Cup Finals

Peter Lutz and Robin de Ponthual; Charlie Jacobs and Flaming Star.

Wellington, Fla. – March 21, 2016 – In just two days, 10 American riders will vie for the winning title during the 2016 Longines FEI World Cup Show Jumping Championship in Gothenburg, Sweden. Among the impressive list of competitors heading to Sweden are two of Phelps Media Group’s own:  Peter Lutz and Charlie Jacobs.

Lutz has an impressive list of accolades, including winning the $100,000 Longines FEI World Cup Jumping Las Vegas in November 2015 riding Robin Du Ponthual. Along with Robin Du Ponthual, Lutz will also be taking Retiro to compete during the world-class competition, both owned by Katherine Gallagher and Michael Meller.  E2 Show Jumpers also offers special congratulations to Gallagher and Meller as their horses prepare for this exciting event.

Jacobs competed in his first World Cup Final in 2014 in Lyon, France and he is looking forward to representing the United States once again at the international event. He will also be accompanied by two mounts, Flaming Star and Cassinja S.

“We’re extremely proud to have such accomplished and talented riders as part of the Phelps Media Group family,” said Chip McKenney chief executive officer of Phelps Media Group. “We’re all wishing for the very best of luck in Sweden for both Peter and Charlie.”

Lutz and Jacobs are among an impressive list of American riders that will be competing in Gothenburg. The other eight riders that will be in attendance are Hardin Towell, Quentin Judge, Callan Solem, Katie Dinan, Rich Fellers, and Audrey Coulter.

Everyone at Phelps Media Group would like to wish our American team good luck at the World Cup Final, especially to our talented clients, Peter Lutz and Charlie Jacobs!

Media Contact: Rebecca Walton
Phelps Media Group, Inc. International
phone 561.753.3389 fax 561.753.3386

Peter Lutz Pilots Robin de Ponthual to Victory in Las Vegas

Peter Lutz (USA) and Robin de Ponthual claim victory of the $100,000 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League qualifier in Las Vegas (USA). (FEI/Amy McCool)

Las Vegas, Nevada (USA), 15 November 2015 – An enthusiastic crowd in Las Vegas cheered each rider who entered the arena at the South Point Hotel and Casino, but it was the American Peter Lutz and Robin de Ponthual that claimed the final winning praise by beating a field of 30 to claim the $100,000 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League qualifier at CSI3* Las Vegas National.

Germany’s Olaf Petersen Jr. designed the course that offered multiple options in striding and track.

“Actually, when the riders walked the course, some told me that it looked to be more on the easy side,” Petersen Jr. said. “But I like it that way. It figured out that we had faults here and there. I liked the way it rode and that it didn’t have any disasters. It was a pretty mixed group: some very good riders and some new to this level.”

The course walk may have given a false sense of confidence to competitors as rails fell for the seasoned veterans and the young upstarts. But a competitive group of eight emerged from the first round to make for an exciting jump off in a city that lives for risks.

“The new Longines North American League is bringing up the path to the World Cup Final in leaps and bounds,” said Robert Ridland, President of Blenheim EquiSports and the United States Show Jumping Chef d’Equipe. “That’s a really big deal. If you want to make a Final very exciting and suspenseful, you have to make the journey at the same level. I think Longines is hitting a home run here in North America.”

Viva Las Vegas

Australia’s Matt Williams and Valinski S (Nijinski x Julius) were the first to go double clear in Round 1 and thus, first to go in the jump off. He noted that his strategy going into the final round was to ride on the conservative side to give his mount a positive experience, but his plan changed once in the arena and the pair set a respectable time of 34.25 seconds with no faults.

“I sort of choked to the last fence there,” Williams said. “I could have had eight strides. I was really lucky. I guess that’s what happens in Vegas – you get lucky sometimes. But my horse jumps his heart out every time. What he doesn’t have in size, he makes up for in size.”

One round later, Audrey Coulter (USA) improved on Williams’ time aboard Domino (Thunder van de Zuuthoeve x Azur Depaulstra), although her time of 33.61 seconds did not hold against Lutz’s 33.21 seconds that came second to last in the order.

“Going so early, I was really aiming for a smooth, clear round to put a little bit of pressure on the people behind me,” said Coulter, a recent graduate of Dartmouth College. “I knew that in a few places I was a little safe and left the door open. Overall, I was really happy with my result.”

“Domino is a relatively new mount for me,” Coulter added. “We got him two months ago from Jos Verlooy. I train with Jos so it’s really nice having him in the stable and getting his feedback. I think it’s really helped me to get to know [Domino] even faster.”

The international jump-off field included top talents as Verlooy (BEL), Kent Farrington (USA), Eduardo Menezes (BRA), Simon Nizri (ISR), and Lucy Davis (USA), all of whom finished behind the three leading double clears. Current world number two Farrington managed the fastest time of 32.90 seconds with Gazelle (Kashmir van Schuttershof x Indoctro), but an unlucky rail kept him from the top of the podium.

Win big or go home

Lutz’s first World Cup qualifier victory marks a new milestone for the rider who has recently transitioned from developing young horses and riders to concentrating his efforts to the top of the sport.

“I spent many years teaching students and developing horses,” Lutz said. “I had nice horses along the way, but I didn’t really have the opportunity to hold onto a horse like Robin in the past and I’m very grateful that I can now. I spent a lot of years bringing along young horses and young riders, including Audrey, who I worked with for many years. I’m really proud of them; many have gone to be great riders. At this point, I’m concentrating more on riding, taking advantage of the opportunities that I have, and I’m really happy that I can do it.”

The talented, 10-year-old Selle Francais gelding (Elf d’Or x Calypso d’Herbiers) originally came from American rider McLain Ward’s stable about a year ago. Lutz explained that he and Ward rode together as teenagers and have since developed a working relationship.

“Robin and I have been building a relationship over the past year,” Lutz said. “He’s so talented, scopey, careful, and a winner. We jumped some great classes in the spring, then really this fall, starting at the American Gold Cup, things started to go well.”

The decision to try their hand at the World Cup qualifier in Las Vegas came from the pair’s strong, 4th place finish at the earlier East Coast league event in New York in September.

“A few times this year, I was little bit conservative and tentative in the jump-off,” Lutz said. “Then I started to take a few more risks and to go a little bit faster. We did that a few times to get into the same rhythm and the same speed. Tonight, I felt like it was perfect combo of calm and fast for it all to come together.”

It’s show time

Lutz described his mount as quiet and gentle in the barn but excited as soon as he steps into the competition arena.

“He’s even quiet in the schooling area,” Lutz said. “But when he walks into the ring, he really responds to the crowd. He really changes and comes alive. He’s two different horses in that respect. As soon as he steps into the ring, he really excels and is energized by the crowd. And there was such a great crowd here. It distracted him a little bit at first, but by the time he got into the jump-off, he was really focused.”

The Las Vegas National is the last of the 2015 season for Lutz and Robin. Together, they’ll fly home to New York where they can rest before starting back up in Florida in January.

“I flew with the horses, which was so exciting,” Lutz said. “We flew to Los Angeles then drove here. It’s been a great journey, and this couldn’t be a better ending. It’s the first year that I’m consistently showing at the World Cup level, and I’m thrilled.”

Full results: http://bit.ly/1kxKJW5

Facts and Figures:

In the first round, eight horses went clear, five had 4 faults, five had 8, one had 12, two had 13, one had 16, one had 20, one had 30, five were eliminated and one retired.

The course designer was Olaf Petersen Jr. (GER).

The first round was contested over 13 obstacles with 16 jumping efforts. The jump-off round had seven obstacles with eight efforts. The maximum height was set at 1.60 meters.

Eight nations were represented in the class: Australia (2 riders), Austria (1 rider), Belgium (1 rider), Brazil (1 rider), France (1 rider), Germany (1 rider), Israel (1 rider) and the United States (22 riders).


Olaf Petersen Jr. (GER): “We [course designers] are always told to raise the level, in general, especially on the West Coast. We have to put to the specs. It doesn’t help anyone who qualifies who then doesn’t get good results [at the World Cup Final]. It’s of course difficult enough, but on the other hand, we still want to have a jump off.”

Robert Ridland (USA), President of Blenheim EquiSports and United States Show Jumping Chef d’Equipe: “More than anything, the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League has upped everybody’s game. There are less World Cup qualifiers than there were previously so it’s increased the quality and made the World Cup qualifiers more intense. There’s been a remarkable difference in the caliber of the World Cup classes in the United States this year. It’s a great thing for the sport.”

Audrey Coulter (USA): “I took a little bit of time off because of school but now that I’ve graduated, I’m just completely focusing on riding. I would like to go to the World Cup Final this year, to be on more US teams and just see where it takes me. I think I have a great group of horses right now so I’m excited about all of them and to see where it goes.”

Peter Lutz (USA): “I saw Audrey go, and she rode really well, went beautifully. I saw where she left out some strides to the third jump. I think I did one less to the last jump. I think that’s where I may have beat her.”

About Las Vegas National Horse Show

The Las Vegas National, managed by Blenheim EquiSports, is a nationally-recognized horse show held annually at the South Point Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. Blenheim EquiSports is an equestrian event management company based in San Juan Capistrano, California, that produces equestrian events in three locations: San Juan Capistrano, Del Mar and Las Vegas. This includes USEF “Premier” and “National” rated hunter-jumper shows featuring multiple grand prix events, a Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League event, USHJA International Hunter Derbies, Pony Finals, Medal Finals and more.

Official fan site – www.feiworldcup.com/NAL

The FEI has developed an official fan microsite for the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League, enabling fans to find all the latest information for this brand new series under one digital umbrella.

Fans can keep close tabs on the athletes competing in this exciting series as they do their utmost to qualify for the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final in Gothenburg, Sweden, on 23-26 March 2016.

Tickets can be purchased through the fan site, with event-specific information uploaded regularly by the organisers of the events in this series for fan enjoyment.

Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League

A total of 14 athletes from the new North American League will qualify for the prestigious Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final.

The top seven athletes from the East Coast US, top three from West Coast US and the two best-placed athletes from Canada and Mexico will qualify for the Final, alongside winners of the 13 other leagues from around the world.

The North American League boasts a minimum of US $2.4 million prize money across the series, and offers the best Jumping athletes from North America and around the world the chance to qualify for the jackpot of more than US $1.4 million (€1.3 million) on offer annually at the Final.

The new league was launched by Beezie Madden, the most decorated US female equestrian athlete of all time, American Gold Cup winner and FEI Solidarity Ambassador Jessica Springsteen, and Hannah Selleck, team and individual gold medalist at young rider level and one of the sport’s up-and-coming stars. Full launch release here: https://goo.gl/kCIsyW.

Share images, video, experiences using hashtag #FEIWorldCupNAL.

By Esther Hahn

FEI Media Contacts:

Ruth Grundy
Manager Press Relations
Email: ruth.grundy@fei.org
Tel: +41 787 506 145

Shannon Gibbons
Manager Press Relations
+41 78 750 61 46