|This release sponsored by Sapphire Riding Academy
Crete, IL – June 17, 2017 – Crowds gathered both inside and outside the historic Balmoral Park grandstands to watch the $50,000 Adequan Grand Prix during the Showplace Productions’ Spring Spectacular II Horse Show. VIP guests enjoyed food and drinks from the second level while happy hour was under way on the first floor vendor area with a band, food and bar. Everyone had a perfect view of the Guilherme Jorge designed course, a difficult track where only seven of the 33 entries made it to the jump off track.
Spectators got quite a show in the jump off as fierce competitors put the pedal to the medal for the big paycheck. Tracy Fenney, Flower Mound, Texas, was first to return on MTM Como No, who showed she meant business from the second she entered the ring. The course allowed for a good gallop and Fenney did just that like a racehorse out of the gate, crossing the finish line in a tough to catch 36.069 seconds. Fenney turned out to be the first and the best, taking the win.
Tracy Fenney and MTM Como No sped to the finish line for the win.
MTM Como No is only eight-years-old, but the stallion already has an impressive grand prix resume, including a win in the $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix in Ocala in March. This season the pair already has 14 top ten placings in welcome stake or grand prix classes including a 5th place finish in the prestigious Devon Speed Derby. Fenney currently stands 7th in the Nation for lifetime jumper money won, earning just under $3.5 million dollars.
“I think they got it just right here,” said trainer Mike McCormick of MTM Farm about the new Balmoral Park. “We’re looking forward to coming back for the FEI competition in August.”
The only rival who could come close was Maggie Jayne, Elgin, Illinois, and Pony Lane Farm’s Everything, who raced to the finish trying to beat Fenney, in 36.682 for second. Kelsey Thatcher usually has the ride on Everything in the High Amateur Owner Jumpers, winning top ribbons in the division across the country including the Circuit Championship at the Winter Equestrian Festival.
Maggie Jayne and Pony Lane Farm's Everything galloped into second place.
“I had the privilege to ride this amazing horse since Kelsey wasn’t here yet,” said Jayne. “I usually don’t get to ride him in a class where I can be competitive although I’ve known the horse for about four years now, so I knew the horse could do anything I asked. It’s tough to beat Tracy [Fenney], she’s an amazing rider. We could have been a little faster in one of the turns but I was really pleased with the horse and it was a good class.”
Tracy Fenney and Igor Van De Heibos crossed the finish line in third.
Fenney had one more chance in the jump off to secure a win with Igor Van De Heibos, a nine-year-old Belgian Warmblood, but clocked in at 36.980 with a clear round for third.
Dorothy Douglas and S&L Elite.
Dorothy Douglas, who also rides for the MTM Farm, caught a rail in the jump off which put her in fourth with S&L Elite.
Lisa Goldman had two swings for the win with Barbara Disko’s Sovereign and her own Centurion B, but the speed caused some rails in the jump off, landing her in 5th and 6th place respectively.
Derek Braun and Lacarolus, last week’s winners, finished in 7th as his horse got caught in a rail from the the first jump of the in and out and couldn’t find his feet to jump out.
Sydney Swarr and Carl Loui TSP won the $5,000 GhoDho U25 Jumper Classic.
Winning the $5,000 GhoDho U25 Jumper Classic was Sydney Swarr on High Hopes Farm's Carl Loui TSP. Swarr trains with Martin Klein Training Stables based in College Grove, TN, and Folsom, LA. GhoDho encourages young and upcoming riders with the winner of the Showplace U25 Series getting a sponsored spot in the Annali-Brookwood Farm George H. Morris Chicago clinic, organized by Diane Carney, November 24-26th.
Jumper riders continue competition featuring the $10,000 SmartPak Jumper Classic on Sunday and the $5,000 SJHOF Junior/Amateur Jumper Classic.
Alex Ortiz and Little Paul. (Photo Andrew Ryback Photography)
Equitation riders competed in the ASPCA Maclay Medal where Alexis Ortiz of Hoffman Estates, Illinois, on Little Paul took the top spot and Amanda Pennington on Cumano Boy Z took second.
In the WIHS Medal, Gia Rinaldi on Alex Jayne’s The Governor, won both the hunter and the jumper phase for the overall win. (Photo Andrew Ryback Photography)
Paige Matthies and Conto Blue. (Photo Andrew Ryback Photography)
In the 15-17 Equitation, Paige Matthies of Lake Leelanau, Michigan won the championship in the division on Conto Blue and Amanda Pennington took reserve with Cumano Boy Z.
Champion in the 12-14 Equitation was Hayley Anderson on Bombardier with Maggie Bresch and Cullen in reserve.
On Sunday, Equitation riders will have the USEF Huntseat Medal and the IHJA Junior Medal.
While competition winds down to the final day of Showplace Spring Spectacular II, excitement builds for the Showplace Derby Day on Tuesday, June 20th. Derbies will take over both main rings for the Showplace Derby Day featuring the $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby presented by Bull Run Farm, the $10,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby sponsored by Galway Farm, the $2,500 Balmoral Child/Adult Hunter Derby and the $2,500 USHJA Pony Derby sponsored by the Markman Family. A gourmet lunch is sponsored by Gene & Georgetti’s and Michelle Durpetti.
For a schedule and prize list visit www.showplaceproductions.com.
Trainers are hosting a fundraiser, JUMP FOR ALZ, during the Showplace Spring Spectacular featuring a raffle, bracelet sales, a clinic with Diane Carney – 2016 ASPCA Maclay judge on Wednesday, clear round donations in the jumper ring and ribbons won donations in the hunter rings on Wednesday, June 21st for The Longest Day. Exceptional Equestrian will donate 5% of their sales to the cause so stop in at vendor row and tell them you’d like to donate.
June is Alzheimer’s Awareness month and the fundraiser is in support of those families affected by the disease. Proceeds will help to eliminate Alzheimer's disease through the advancement of research; provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. Be sure to donate!
About Sapphire Riding Academy
Sapphire Riding Academy is a premier Hunter/Jumper training facility located in Mettawa, Illinois, and offers full service training with an experienced staff and on-site management to oversee all operations. Sapphire Riding Academy can meet the needs of all levels of riders, whether your own a horse or lease one of theirs, you can be assured both you and your horse will be ready to compete successfully. Experienced trainers can take you to any ring; hunters, jumpers and equitation, from short stirrup to medal and maclay to the grand prix ring. Juniors, amateurs and pony riders are all welcome at Sapphire Riding Academy.
Conveniently located off Interstate 94, just 45 minutes from downtown Chicago and 25 minutes to O’Hare International Airport! www.sapphireridingacademy.com