EquestriSol News: July 6, 2010

Honorable Mentions
Here at home we witnessed a list of notable equestrian triumphs. And we certainly won’t have room to mention them all. So hats off to all of you who won your first blue, jumped your first 3’6″ course or your first jumper course. As we raise our now three-year-old daughter we relearn so many lessons, and the one we most recently discussed (although I don’t think she completely understood) was looking at the glass as half-full. We would like to raise our glass, full or half-full, to all of you who touch our lives through your achievements.

SoCal Triplets
Honorable mention goes to the tri-earners, Joie Gatlin and Camaron Hills Quick Dollar earned third place in the last three grand prix events at Blenheim. Mike Endicott is currently competing on three grand prix mounts and collected ribbons on all three during the June Series. Susie Hutchison and the cat-like Cantano continue to bring home the checks, placing 2nd, 1st and 5th in the three grand prix events they entered in June. New Zealander Maruice Beatson has joined the California crowd. In the first two grand prix classes in June, he placed in the top ten on all three horses.

Notable Athletes
Honorable mention to the up and coming grand prix horses. Although there are many aspiring stars, Mandy Porter on LaMarque & Chesapeake, Leslie Steele with Oh My Goodness, Rusty Stewart and Bristol, Michael Endicott riding Santiago & Zico 13, Josephina Nor-Lantzman on Chello Z, John French with River Bird, Lauren Hester on Cracky Z, and Justin Resnik aboard Contact Me were all impressive during their time on the field. No matter what ribbons they may have garnered, they are certainly among the ones to watch.

Honorable mention also goes to Harley Brown, Lane Clarke, Michelle Parker, Molly Talla whose consistency is notable. Before heading north to Spruce, Brown won 4th and 2nd aboard Cassiato. Clarke is knocking at the door on his two mounts, McLord’s First John and Bay Rose’s Nikko. Parker earned some dollars with her entries, winning the final grand prix of the series. And when Talla trots in the ring she often earns a spot in the top twelve.

More Zone Ten Zip
From ponies to jumpers, Zone 10 accomplished quite a bit during the Blenheim June Series. Another opportunity applies to any rider who has qualified for Medal Finals under 3’6″ within Zone 10. You are eligible to compete in the USHJA Zone 10 North/South Medal Challenge. The Stirrup Cup Finals are 3′, while the Mini Medal Finals are 2’6″.
July 9 – 11: Southern Challenge at Camelot Riding Club – this week!
Oct. 7-10: Northern Challenge at Brookside Eq. Park
Contact: Raizy Goffman 818/360-4389 or Peggy Fackrell 916/947-3405

Zone 10 – USHJA EAP
The Emerging Athletes Program is well into its second year, with Level II Regional Events beginning this month through September. The Zone 9 & 10 Regionals are July 26-27 at the J Bar J Boys Ranch in Bend, Oregon with clinician Callen Solem. The top 12 finalists will go to the Nationals in Buffalo, New York in November of this year. Look for upcoming content in this newsletter from one of this year’s winners and west coast champ Ricky Neal.

Spruce and Euro Notes:
Congrats to the Girls… and couple of Guys too
Many congratulations are in order but here are a few highlights. For the first time in Rotterdam history, an all girls team won the Nations Cup. And those famous femmes were none other than our US riders – Lauren Hough, Candice King, Laura Kraut and Nicki Simpson. This unprecedented victory moved the US from sixth to third in the 2010 Meydan FEI Nations Cup Standings with four more competitions on the schedule.

Our west coast Olympic Gold Medalist got a taste of the winner’s circle again when he rode Archie Bunker to the win in the $100,000 CN Performance Grand Prix at Spruce Meadows. As well as our west coast triple grand prix crown winner Guy Thomas who led the victory gallop with Peterbilt in the Cargill Cup on opening day of the Canada One Tournament.

And a west coast owner, Gwendolyn Meyer, celebrates back to back wins at Spruce as Beezie Madden pilots Coral Reef Vio Volo to the top spot in both the $65,000 Esso Challenge and the $50,000 RBC Cup. Madden is off to Aachen now for more Nations Cup competition, along with Nicki Simpson and the other US WEG Team hopefuls.

Of course that only covers a fraction of the riders competing up at Spruce and those in Europe, and we certainly congratulate all the gallant efforts. For more in depth show jumping coverage and news see PhelpsSports.com.

News from NARG
Resolution of the McLain Ward/Sapphire World Cup Elimination Dispute
The North American Riders Group believes that to advance the sport of show jumping, all decisions related to its future must put the sport itself above all else. This resolution is an example of just that.

McLain, the USEF and the FEI could have continued a prolonged legal battle, but the additional gains on either side would have been for personal gain or pride. Instead, a positive resolution has been forged that publicly recognizes the decision was INCORRECT and, importantly, has resulted in a revised protocol for hypersensitivity.

Details of the revised protocol will be issued before the Aachen CHIO. From what we understand they will require more checks and balances which should eliminate any misuse of the protocol either by mistake or abuse of power.

While we still recognize that McLain can’t get back the World Cup he lost in Geneva, we applaud those involved for this resolution.

For more information, please visit www.narg.org.

Highlights from the $50,000 Blenheim World Cup Qualifying Grand Prix, presented by the OC Register Friday evening – September 11, 2009

Could we say that this class was an early in the season World Cup wake up call? While some of our top finishers from the last qualifier were away at Spruce Meadows, the thirteen efforts set by Michel Vaillancourt challenged each of the twenty-four entries in the second West Coast World Cup qualifying class, as not one managed to ride fault free.

One serious course culprit was the tight time allowed of 67 seconds. Only a third of the class rode within the time, the remaining sixteen riders accrued at least one time fault. The bend from jump one to two that began the course rode well for all, and not a single rail dropped in the option seven or eight oxer vertical line. Even for those who chose to ride the seven, time faults still accrued. Just a few dropped rails in the tight turn off the rail leading to fences three and four – an oxer to a tall plank vertical in a long three. Again very few had trouble with the immediate bend in seven strides to the left to fence five, the liverpool. The triple combination took its toll – a triple bar-vertical-vertical that rode very snug and forced the riders to continue on in four forward strides to an oxer – well over half the class caught one or two rails somewhere within that line. In this indoor setting the oxer at jump eight came up immediately after a right turn in five strides to a very forward one with a wide oxer as element B. Multiple riders did not make it across the width coming out of the double combination. Seemingly straight forward the oxer at fence ten came down a surprising amount of times – possibly due to riders thinking about the time allowed? The course finished up with a vertical at the top end of the ring, one other spot where there was no room to ‘add’ strides in the corner and make the time. Finishing to a left turn coming home over an airy gate in a long four strides to a sizeable oxer.

Becky Smith and Galan 195 (Audrey Halle, owner) were the only pair who managed to jump around without dropping a single rail. Recently imported, the big chestnut and Smith have only been in the grand prix arena together for the last month. Stopping the clock in 67.29, she finished with one fault. Usually a heartbreak score, on this auspicious day it was best of the class for the win. Placing second with just one rail at fence seven and within the time allowed was Percynality and Mexican rider Eduardo Menezes. The fabulous pair of Susie Hutchison and El Dorado 29’s Cantano came close, just a rail at 9A and just one tenth of a second over the time allowed for five faults. Good enough for third. The other five faulter, just touching the end fence enough to lower its height and finishing in 69.61 for fourth place was Helen McNaught on her own Caballo.

The next ribbons went to eight fault scores – both of these riders stopped the clock within the time but had two rails along the way. Joie Gatlin and Cameron Hills Quick Dollar and Lane Clarke aboard Kiss the Sky each had combination rails – for Gatlin it was jumping into the triple at 6A and the other coming out of the long double at 9B. And for Clarke 6C and 9B were the downfalls. Rounding out eighth through twelfth were the nine faulters each with two rails plus a time fault. Notable that two of these top twelve finishers were teenagers – college-bound Saer Coulter was eighth on Chalan and Stefanie Saperstein was tenth aboard El Sueno’s Quanto VL. The next World Cup Qualifier is next week at the Los Angeles International Jumping Festival.