Chester Weber eighth in Driving World Championships
By SARA CAVANAGH
PRATONI DEL VIVARO, Italy--Chester Weber of Ocala, Fla., finished eighth in the Driving World Championship for Four-in-Hands after the final phase of cones on the grass on Sunday,Sept. 25.
Weber added nine faults to his overnight combined score, and finished the course in 208.04 seconds, for a final competition total of 175.90.
Chester Weber in Cones (Photo by Allen MacMillan)It was pouring rain on the final day of competition that had 36 teams complete the cones course designed by Josef Middendorf of Germany.
With two new horses in the team’s lineup this year, Weber’s KWPN geldings gained valuable experience at a new venue with challenging terrain and technicality throughout the weekend.
Weber, understandingly upset after an uncharacteristically poor Cones competition, did not stop at the area for media to interview competitors.
The cones course was particularly difficult, both in the weaving lines and uneven pacing between the obstacles, the tight spacing between the cones and the width of the carriage wheels, and the short time allowed, according to the top drivers on the gold medal Dutch Team.
The U.S. Eventing team won the silver medal at the World Championships
By SARA CAVANAGH
PRATONI DEL VIVARO, Italy--It was a never-racking, roller coaster finish to the Eventing World Championships as the medal placings among the top four teams changed with almost every rider in the top 25 that entered the show jumping ring on Sept. 18.
USA Eventing Team Silver Medal (Photo by Allen MacMillan)The placings were incredibly close, with tenths of a point separating second from fourth.
In the end, it was Germany winning the gold medal on 95.2 with the U.S.team taking the silver medal on 100.3 and New Zealand finishing with the bronze medal on 100.7, with Great Britain finishing fourth on 100.9.
The individual medals changed hands with every rider, too, with Great Britain's individual rider Yasmin Ingham on Banzai du Loir going clean to claim the gold medal on 23.2 when Germany's Michael Jung on fischerChipmunk FRH had two fences down to finish in fifth on 26.8, moving Julia Krajewski of Germany on Amanda de B'Meville into the silver medal on 26.0 and Tim Price of New Zealand on Falco into the bronze on 26.2, while Tamie Smith on Mai Baum, who had been standing third after cross country, also had two fences down to drop to ninth.
U.S. second by one point to Germany going into stadium jumping, with Great Britain third
By SARA CAVANAGH
PRATONI DEL VIVARO, Italy--The U.S. Eventing Team had a fantastic day on cross-country in the hills of Pratoni in the World Championships, finishing all four team members and the individual rider around the course designed by Giuseppe Della Chiesa of Italy without any jumping faults on Saturday,, Sept. 17.
Tamra Smith on Mai Baum (Photo by Allen MacMillan)The team is second by just one fault behind Germany on a team score of 77.4, while Tamie Smith on Mai Baum hold third place individually overnight on their score of 24.0.
Germany leads on 76.1, Great Britain stands third on 80.9, with New Zealand fourth on 88.3, followed by Switzerland, 109.4, Japan, 111.9, Ireland, 116.0, Belgium, 122.4, Sweden, 125.4, Australia, 146.3, Italy, 1151, Canada, 221.3, and Brazil, 279.2, with France, Austria and Spain only finishing two riders.
All five American riders complete the cross country without any jumping faults and three were double clear, no jumping and no time.
According to the best research The Horse could do, this was the first time since the 1974 World Championships in Kentucky, where the team of Bruce Davidson, Mike Plumb, Denny Emerson and Don Sachey won the gold medal and Davidson won the individual gold with Plumb winning the individual silver, that all team members and individuals finished cross country without a jumping fault.
Only 10 of the 88 competitors jumped double clear, including three Germans and three Americans,as well as two Brits, one French and one New Zealander.
Team members Tamie Smith and Boyd Martin and individual Ariel Grald were double clear for the U.S.,while Michael Jung, Julia Krajewski and Sandra Auffarth were clear for Germany.
U.S. stands a very close third after Eventing Dressage going into Cross Country
By Staff Writers
PRATONI DEL VIVARO, Italy--After Tamie Smith and Boyd Martin completed their dressage tests at the Eventing World Championships, the U.S.stands third going into Saturday's cross country, but the top four countries are separated by only a few cross country time penalties.
Tamra Smith on Mai Baum (Photo by Allen MacMillan)Great Britain leads on 69.2, with Germany second on 76.1, the U.S. third on 76.6 and New Zealand fourth on 77.7, followed by Australia,, 84.1, France, 84.2, Japan, 86.7,Belgium, 87.4, Switzerland, 90.1, Italy, 90.3, then Spain, 97.4, Ireland,99.0, Sweden, 99.0, Canada, 100.5, Austria , 100.8, and Brazil, 104.1.
Smith on Mai Baum scored 24.0 to stand fifth individually, with Boyd Martin and Tsetserleg TSF rounding out the day, earning a 26.2 from the judging panel to be 14th individually.
Will Coleman and Lauren Nicholson, who competed Thursday, are19th and 21st individually.
The U.S. individual competitor Ariel Grald on Leamore Master Plan scored 32.5 to sit in 48th place individually.
While attention now turns to the Giuseppe Della Chies-designed track across the hills of Pratoni, Chef d’Equipe Bobby Costello was pleased with the team’s performance at the conclusion of the first phase.
Mia Mannis won the $5,000 Welcome Stake at the Devon Fall Classic
By Staff Writers
DEVON, Pa.--Mia Mannison Hollyhay V won the $5,000 Welcome Stake on Thursday, Sept. 15, beating a field of 15 over a course designed by Manuel Espara of Mexico.
Mia Mannis on Hollydav V (Photo by Cassidy Klein)The sun set over the difficult course, adding another element of difficulty for horses as each jump had its own accompanying, spooky shadow.
Mannis was the first to go in the order on Hallyday V.
“He was difficult for me to ride at first, and I was having a little bit of trouble," said Mannis. "We just kept on working and we just stayed really patient, and the past three grand prix’s he has jumped a clear round for me every single time. He jumps a clear round in pretty much every welcome and he is really an amazing horse, he is really like my child right now."
Also first to go in the jump-off, Mannis set the pace with a clear round in a time of 36.578 seconds, and no one was able to match that speed.
OZONE PARK, N.Y.--Both jump races at Aqueduct on Sept. 15, the William Entenmann Novice Stakes and the G1 Lonesome Glory Stakes, were very unusual in that each had an odds-on favorite, but then, even more unusual, in both races there were stunning upsets.
Harry Beswick celebrates on Noah And The Ark nearing wire in the Lonesome Glory Stakes (Photo by Tod Marks)Snap Decision and The Mean Queen were both expected to win easily, but both were defeated, both finishing second, with Snap Decision defeated by the weight he carried and The Mean Queen by a combination of being impeded at the start while coming off an 11 month absence due to an injury.
Bruton Street-US' Snap Decision, trained by Jack Fisher and ridden by Graham Watters, went to the lead in the Lonesome Glory as was more or less expected, and was expected to pull away on the turn and go on for the win as he did in the Jonathan Sheppard.
But instead it was rank outsider Noah and The Ark, trained by Todd McKenna and ridden by Harrison Beswick, was the one who swept to the lead on the turn and pulled away to win by 9 lengths, with Snap Decision holding on for second by 3/4 length over Ask Paddington, trained by Keri Brion and ridden by Danny Mullins.
The Mean Queen, trained by Brion and ridden by Parker Hendrks, was impeded by an outrider at the start, losing 6 or 7 lengths on the field but was quickly up close to the lead, went into the lead on the final turn and drew away to lead by a length, but Proven Innocent, owned by Bruton Street-US, trained by Fisher and ridden by Jamie Bargary, made a huge move on the final turn and just caught The Mean Queen to win by a head, with Howyabud, trained by Brion and ridden by Barry Foley, third, with Going Country fourth, giving Brion second, third and fourth but not the win she'd hoped for.
Free Dinner and Educational Opportunity with Dr. James Lattimer, Equine Nutritionist for Farmers Coop
By Staff Writers
FREDERICK, Md.--The Team at FCA is dedicated to not only supplying your equine friends with fresh quality feeds, but also assisting you in making the right choice because we know every horse has unique needs.
That is why we are inviting you to join us on Sept. 29 to listen and to learn from ADM Equine Nutritionist, Dr. James Lattimer.
Dr. Lattimer has worn many hats throughout his life but none more fitting than his cowboy hat.
In addition to being experienced and highly educated in the field of equine nutrition, Dr. Lattimer was also a “horseperson” himself who understands firsthand the challenges horse owners face.
Dr. Lattimer will provide you with knowledge you can easily understand.
If you are expecting to sit and copy information off a slide show you will be in for a surprise because he will have you at the edge of your seat engaged in his presentation and a conversation.
So please join us for a free dinner, door prizes, and a night of education on Thursday, Sept. 29 at the Frederick Fairgrounds in Frederick, Md!
Registration and dinner will be from 6:00-6:30 p.m. with the interactive educational presentation from 6:30-8:30.
Do not pass up this opportunity to learn from one of the leading experts in the field of Equine Nutrition!
Some background on Dr. James Lattimer:
Dr. James Lattimer, equine nutritionist with ADM Animal Nutrition, earned his Ph.D. in comparative nutrition from Kansas State University and later returned there as a faculty member in the Animal Sciences and Industry Department where he conducted extensive equine and comparative nutrition research focusing on digestive physiology of the horse with specific areas in the gut micro biome and the effect of feedstuffs on gut health.
In addition to his vast expertise researching and teaching equine nutrition, Dr. Lattimer has a lifetime of hands-on horse knowledge including team roping, calf roping and intercollegiate horse judging.
Now Hiring! Carousel Park Seeks a Park and Equestrian Center Director
By Staff Writers
PIKE CREEK, Del.--Carousel is a beautiful 200+ acre park and equestrian center located in Pike Creek, Del.
A part of New Castle County Delaware’s park system and division of recreation, the park features indoor and outdoor riding arenas, walking trails, stocked fishing ponds, a no-fence dog park, and a professional cross-country riding course completed in 2018.
The park is home to events such as schooling shows and an annual family camping event in October.
The park is also the home of the New Castle County Mounted Patrol unit.
Carousel Park provides a variety of equestrian programming including riding lessons, therapeutic riding, scouting programs and seasonal pony rides.
As the Director of Carousel Park and Equestrian Center, you would perform responsible managerial, supervisory, administrative, and technical work related to the operation, administration and maintenance of the park, equestrian center, and all programming including related work as required.
For more information and to apply for this position, please visit newcastlede.gov/carousel.
Deadline to apply is Sept. 30, 2022.
The Devon Fall Classic welcomes exhibitors back to the Dixon Oval
By Staff Writers
DEVON, Pa.--The Devon Fall Classic, presented by Main Line Health, Bryn Mawr Hospital, will return to the historic Devon Horse Show Grounds in two weeks.
Festivities will kick off at 4:00 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 14 when the show grounds open to the public with Vendor Village, Midway, great food and live entertainment.
The competition will run from Thursday, Sept.15 through Sunday, Sept. 18.
Take in the beautiful scenery and autumn air between classes and enjoy the Devon Fall Classic with family and friends.
The Devon Fall Classic opens for the 9th year featuring over $100,000 in prize money.
Thursday evening, the Dixon Oval will host the $5,000 Open Jumper Welcome Stake, and the $5,000 Speed Stake will take place Friday evening.
Saturday evening events feature the $7,500 Show Jumping Hall of Fame Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic while the night concludes with the highly anticipated $25,000 Devon Fall Classic Grand Prix.
Sunday concludes with the $1,500 to $5,000 championships.
The Devon Fall Classic offers many classes and divisions across the jumper discipline for exhibitors to choose from, including Open Jumpers, Young Jumpers, Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers, Children’s and Adult-Amateur Jumpers, as well as the Thoroughbred Jumper.
For exhibitor information, entries, stall reservations and other forms, go to the show’s website at www.devonhorseshow.com/exhibitors/fall-classic-exhibitors-info-2/.
You may purchase tickets for the Devon Fall Classic online, as a walk-in, or by phone.
To purchase tickets or renew your box lease online, we invite you to visit the website at www.devonhorseshow.com.
Proven Innocent wins a hurdle allowance at Saratoga in a thrilling finish
By SARA CAVANAGH
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y.--Jack Fisher saddled Bruton Street-US' Proven Innocent to win the $70,000, 2 3/8 mile Allowance Hurdle in a breath-taking finish at Saratoga on Aug. 31.
Proven innocent, number 7, nails Bandua at the wire (Photo by Tod Marks)Proven Innocent, ridden by Jamie Bargary, beat Bandua, trained by Neil Morris, by 1/2 length after a thrilling stretch run, with Who's Counting trained and ridden by Sean McDermott, third and Baltimore Kid, trained by Keri Brion, fourth.
Bandua, ridden by Gerard Galligan, made a huge move on the final turn to open a big lead in the stretch, with Proven Innocent chasing, but even three-quarters of the way down the stretch it didn't look possible for Proven Innocent to catch the leader.
"I didn't think he'd make it," said Fisher.
Proven Innocent, by Blame out of an A.P. Indy mare, was bred by Stuart Janney and raced by for him by Shug McGaughey, winning a $90,000 Maiden Special Weight at Belmont in September, 2021.
There are certain names that are permanently retired in Thoroughbred racing due to the greatness of the horse that originally carried the name.
There will never be another ManOWar, or Secretariat.
In showjumping,it should be the same.
I was amazed to see Spencer Smith riding Untouchable 32 on the American team in Dublin.
Spencer's horse needs another name
The great Untouchable, ridden by Kathy Kusner, was one of a kind, especially at Dublin, where he had two clear rounds in the Nations Cup and won the Grand Prix.
Just my humble opinion, but I would hate to see another Secretariat run up the track, and it is sad to see another Untouchable with rails down all over the Dublin arena.
Snap Decision dominates the Jonathan Sheppard Stakes despite high weight
By SARA CAVANAGH
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. --Snap Decision led virtually every step of the way in the G1, $150,000 Jonathan Sheppard Steeplechase Stakes to win by 13 1/4 lengths in 4:32.88 despite carrying the high weight of 164 pounds and giving 24 pounds to second placed Going Country.
Snap Decision leads early in the Jonathan Sheppard Stakes (Photo by Tod Marks)Bruton Street-US' Snap Decision, trained by Hall of Fame Jack Fisher and ridden by Graham Watters settled near the rear over the first hurdle, but went to the lead on the first turn, jumping well and cruising in front until the final turn when he began to open up and finished with ears pricked, 13 1/4 lengths over Going Country, trained by Keri Brion, with Redicean, trained by Leslie Young, third, followed by Belfast Banter, Song for Someone, Down Royal and Chief Justice..
"For us, he's a once in a lifetime horse,"said Charlie Fenwick, who is partner with Mike Hankin and Charlie Noell in Bruton Street.
"When he jumped the first fence and wasn't settling behind, I was afraid we'd gotten him too sharp when we ran him in the stake on the flat,"said Fenwick. "But then he settled in front and jumped brilliantly."
Snap Decision had run third in a stakes at Colonial Downs that Fisher said he had used as a work for the 8-year-old gelding bred by Phipps Stable and campaigned by the Phipps, for whom he was stakes placed on the flat.
Dressage at Devon returns for another year of fabulous family fun and top competition
By Staff Writers
DEVON, Pa.--Since its inception in 1975, Dressage at Devon has been known for its high-level competition, can’t-miss special events, and magical atmosphere.
A tradition that is looking into the future, Dressage at Devon will be introducing new events along with important classes for dressage riders from around the world.
“Dressage at Devon is one of those iconic events that is memorable and special for all,” said George Williams, United States Dressage Federation President. “We are excited about innovating and adopting new technologies that in the years to come will enable an even wider audience to experience the magic of this show.”
Saturday night’s Grand Prix Freestyle performances are a crowd favorite, giving spectators the chance to cheer and clap as their favorite horses perform to their own unique music.
This year’s show includes a World Cup qualifier for Grand Prix competitors, a chance for riders to earn valuable qualifying points for next year’s 2023 FEI World Cup Dressage Finals in Omaha.
Olympic silver medalist Sabine Schut-Kery will perform in an exclusive masterclass on Thursday night that will feature a variety of horses and riders of different ages and levels, an educational opportunity.
Friday is “show day” hat and attire for the ladies, and Kid’s Dressage Explorers Day on Sunday gives children the opportunity to ride a stick horse to display their dressage movements.
Exhibitions include Australian Horseman Guy McLean, the adoptable dogs of All4Paws Dog Rescue, and the annual blessing of the animals.
New this year, Sunday will also be dubbed “Barn Day,” inviting barn groups from near and far to participate in the fun, showing their team spirit in coordinating outfits to vie for great prizes to take home.
The Kingsview Partners Roaring 20’s Party on Friday night is open to all.
Tickets, now available to reserve on the Dressage at Devon website, will include door prizes, great drinks, food, and dancing.
Dressage at Devon offers great shopping, with a long list of boutique vendors open all week, and food vendors have numerous options for full meals or light snacks to enjoy.
Saratoga Selected Yearling Sales breaks all records
By SARA CAVANAGH
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y.-Fasig-Tipton's Saratoga Selected Yearling Sales broke all records, with 14 selling over $1 Million, including two for 2 Million.
Saratoga's 2.3 Million saleFour sold for $1 Million Monday night, and a record blasting 10 sold for $1Million or more, including 2 for $2 Million or more on Tuesday evening.
“Rarely do you all find me speechless,"said Boyd Browning, Fasig-Tipton's President and CEO. "Blown away by the results. It’s gratifying to see the hard work that our people put in, the hard work the breeders put in. The hard work the consignors put in, and honestly the buyers put in, and to see it all come together in a four- or five-day period of time and just the energy and excitement, it feels so good from the industry perspective. '
On Tuesday evening, a colt by Gun Runner sold for $2.3 Million to White Birch Farm and M.V.Magnier and a Curlin filly was sold for $2 Million to West Point/Woodford Racing/3C Stable.
To show how amazing the sale was, a colt by Into Mischief was not sold for $1.6 Million after he didn't reach his reserve.
Eight other yearlings sold for $1 million or more, with two of them going for over $1.5 Million.
Dalton's Down Royal won the Smithwick in a stretch duel
By SARA CAVANAGH
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y.--It was a very big day for trainer Kate Dalton and her husband jockey Bernie Dalton at Saratoga on Wednesday, July 20.
Kate and Bernie Dalton bred, owned, trained and rode Down Royal, the only mare in a field of seven, to win the $150,000, G1, 2 1/16 mile A.P. Smithwick hurdle stakes.
Down Royal, the gray, outduels Chief Justice in the Smithwick (Photo by Tod Marks)As the mare is also a New York-bred,, the Daltons collected not only the $90,000 prize money for first but also the New York breeders and owners awards.
And Bernie also vanned the mare up to Saratoga himself, so the Daltons, and the Daltons alone,, were responsible for Down Royal's win.
The 8-year-old daughter of Alphabet Soup scored the first graded victory of her career after closing from off the pace and extended her win streak to four-in-a-row for the Daltons, dating back to her first stakes score in the Randolph D. Rouse last August at Colonial Downs.
Down Royal closed in the stretch to win by a neck over Chief Justice (GB), trained by Cyril Murphy, with French Light (Fr) third and Historic Heart (Ire) fourth, both trained by Keri Brion.
The Daltons chose Alphabet Soup as a sire because of a horse Bernie had ridden.
They had a mare, Miss Crown, ready to be bred when Bernie rode Italian Wedding to win the New York Turf Writers for Jonathan Sheppard.
Brion saddles formidable trio in G1 A.P. Smithwick Memorial
By Staff Writers
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. --Keri Brion will have three chances for a repeat victory in Wednesday’s G1, $150,000 A.P. Smithwick Memorial steeplechase at 2 1/16-miles at the Saratoga race track.
Keri Brion with French LightBrion enjoyed a breakout year in 2021, sweeping all of NYRA’s G1 steeplechase races and all but one of America’s top-level jumping races.
Last year, The Mean Queen, trained by Brion, won the Steeplechase Eclipse Award after a campaign that included a victory in the G1 Jonathan Sheppard Handicap at Saratoga, where Brion also finished second and third with Baltimore Bucko and French Light.
Baltimore Bucko also won last year's Smithwick with a strong front-running performance, ridden by Tom Garner.
That win was the first Grade 1 for both Baltimore Bucko and Brion.
“It’s so crazy,” Brion said of entering three top horses for a chance at another Smithwick. “These three are very good, and I really don’t know which one I’d choose. Their works last week were all really good.”
Leading Brion’s Smithwick trio is the veteran gelding Iranistan, winner of the G2 Temple Gwathmey over multiple graded stakes-winner Snap Decision in April at Middleburg.
The 8-year-old son of Einstein ran a close second in the 2018 running of the Smithwick for Hall of Fame conditioner Jonathan Sheppard and followed with a third in the G1 New York Turf Writers Cup [now the Jonathan Sheppard Handicap] the same year.
Spectators, buy tickets for Devon Fall Classic and exhibitors make your entries
By Staff Writers
DEVON, Pa.--You can now buy tickets for the Devon Fall Classic on the Devon website, and entries and stall reservations for the Fall Classic are open now through Show Management Systems.
Set to return to the historic Devon Horse Show Grounds from Wednesday, Sept. 14 to Sunday, Sept. 19, the Devon Fall Classic horse show will feature exciting jumper competition, in addition to family-friendly fun which includes carnival rides and games, great food, live music and shopping in the Vendor Village.
Exhibitors can now download the prize list and other entry forms on the website, or enter directly through Show Management System.
Returning for its ninth year, the Fall Classic benefits the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that allows the historic venue the support it needs to continue improvements to the showgrounds.
Laura Chapot won the $100,000 Grand Prix at Lake Placid, only the seventh to win both
By Staff Writers
LAKE PLACID, N.Y.--Laura Chapot of Neshanic Station, .J., has had a fantastic, almost unbelievable two weeks in Lake Placid, winning every major jumper class but one, including winning both $100,000 Grand Prix.
Laura Chapot on Diarado's Flying Dutchman (Photo by KindMedia)Chapot rode Diarado’s Flying Dutchman to win the $100,000 Grand Prix at the I Love New York Horse Show, the second week of the Lake Placid Horse Shows.
Chapot’s win made her just the seventh rider ever to sweep both Lake Placid Grand Prix in the same year.
Chapot was one of nine entries to reach the jump-off with a clean trip over the 15-effort, first-round course designed by Bernardo Costa Cabral, course designer for next year’s FEI World Cup Finals in Omaha.
First to return for the eight fence jump-off was Alex Matz of Coatesville, Pa., on Erdento Van De Leeuwerk.
Matz, who won the class last year on Davidson, set the mark to beat with a clean trip in 36.557 seconds.
Matz’s lead held through the next five rides before Chapot returned on her 12-year-old Oldenburg gelding.
She blazed to a clean ride in 35.205 seconds in what proved to be the winning ride.
McLain Ward finishes fifth in Aachen Grand Prix after a five horse jump-off of the best in the world
By SARA CAVANAGH
AACHEN, Germany--Qualifying for the !,500,000 Euro Grand Prix of Aachen on Sunday, July 3, was significant, making the jump-off was a feat in itself, and finishing fifth was equal to winning a major grand prix anywhere in the world.
McLain Ward on HH Azur (file photo)McLain Ward on HH Azur was one of five riders who jumped two clean rounds to make it to the jump-off, but then he had to go first in the tie breaker.
The five who made it to the jump-off reads like the who's who of jumping - along with Ward on Azur, last year’s winner and the contender for the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, were Daniel Deusser of Germany with Killer Queen, the only rider in history who has won the Rolex Grand Slam to-date, Scott Brash of Great Britain with Hello Jefferson, Nicola Philippaerts of Belgium on Katanga van het Dingeshof and Gerrit Nieberg of Germany with Ben.
"It was an amazing class,"said chef d'equipe Robert Ridland. "The first round was one of the toughest I've seen in 40 years.
"The top 18 in the first round made it to the second round. There were 11 or 12 clean and the rest with 4 faults. Just making it to the jump-off was amazing. Then McLain had to go first, and of course he didn't know how fast he'd have to go.
McLain Ward wins a second major competition at Aachen
By SARA CAVANAGH
AACHEN, Germany--On Wednesday, McLain Ward was delighted that after 27 years he had finally claimed the golden ribbon in the Turkish Airlines – Prize of Europe.
McLain Ward on Contagious with the Aachen crowd in the background (Photo by Shannon Brinkman)Then on Friday, July 1, he added a further victory to the list in the RWE Prize of North Rhine-Westphalia on Contagious.
It was fantastic to watch how Ward and his 13-year-old Zweibrücker gelding, Contagious by Contagio, sped through the course in the jump-off of the RWE Prize of North-Rhine Westphalia as the last pair to go.
Even in the tight turns they managed to find the perfect take-off at the obstacles and crossed the finish line in an incredible 41.70 seconds to take the victory.
Ward’s recipe for success? “I know the exact numbers of my strides and I know my horse inside out.”
“I knew the numbers a little bit and my horse can cover the ground pretty well, and I knew the number of strides I could do in this jump-off,” said Ward. "It was very clear ,and the fourth oxer showed up very good for me and the green oxer on the double I did on a slice and I could have made up some time there."