June 2016 - Winner's Circle
Written by CRM
Wednesday, 01 June 2016 07:14

Robert Blanchette On A Roll

Robert Blanchette has been on a roll during the two week Woodside Spring Shows. From the seven-horse jump-off in the second week’s Grand Prix at the Woodside Spring Classic (May 4-8), Robert emerged victorious with Lazur after stopping the timers in 34.722.

Robert Blanchette and Lazur on the way to victory in the Woodside Spring Classic Grand Prix. Photo: Flying Horse Photography

Maude Frye sips cider in the middle of her Handy Round. Photo: Flying Horse Photograpy

Alicia Foster was hot on Robert’s heels with her Zubliem, but she settled for second with a time of 35.185. Just like the previous week, Daniel Zilla rode both Branscomb Farm horses, Contiano B and Venice B., to clear rounds and third and fourth place finishes.

“I’m very happy,” Robert said of his double Grand Prix victory. “I’m lucky to have great horses and a great team supporting me—my wife Tammy and everybody else.”

The results were not exactly what Robert had expected, however. “Honestly, I thought I was going to win on the other horse,” he said with a laugh. “That was my goal, because if you win two on the same horse you get an extra $5,000. But it was good—I was happy.”

LEGIS Equine sponsors various LEGIS Rider Bonuses, including two at Woodside: one for Grand Prix riders and one for Hunter Derby riders. Robert now has two chances at the $25,000 LEGIS Rider Bonus. He only needs to post another Grand Prix win on either horse during the Woodside Summer Circuit for a bonus check. “I’m going to do my best to show in as many of the summer shows as I can,” Robert said. He will be in Canada the first week in June to compete in the Nations Cup for Ireland. “We’ll be driving back and we’ll see how fresh the horses are.”

In the $2500 USHJA National Hunter Derby, youth triumphed over experience. Junior rider Maude Frye on her own Declaration stood third going into the Handy Round out of almost 30 horses contesting the Derby. In the same class last week, Maude led the group going into the second round. “When I went in for the second round last week, I choked and ended up getting a 70 to lose the class,” Maude reflected. “I knew that going into the second round this week I would not let myself do that again. I went in this week with the mindset that I know my horse really well, and that I knew I could take the win if I just took a breath and trusted my skill.”

Course Designer Brian Post added a fun twist in the Handy Round by asking riders to pull up to take a sip of sparkling cider before resuming on course. Awards Presenter Romesh Sinclair held a silver tray and riders quaffed the cider. “The cider sipping was definitely not something you see very often,” said Maude. “I was very concerned that talking to someone in the middle of my round would really break my concentration for the rest of the course.

However, I think riders really handled the challenge well, as it did not seem to mess anyone up.”

Excerpted from LEG Up News press release.


Devon Bridges Logs 1st GP Win

In winning the $25,000 Markel Insurance 1.40m Welcome Grand Prix May 12 at the Del Mar Horsepark, Devon Bridges logged his first Grand Prix victory against a field of 50 and including some of the best in the business. Riding ACE Equestrian’s Amadeus, the young San Juan Capistrano-based professional prevailed against Olympians Rich Fellers and Will Simpson, along with Richard Spooner and Joie Gatlin, who finished close behind him.

Designed by FEI course designer Oscar Soberon of Mexico, the course doubled as an Interactive Mortgage U25 Developing Rider Series class. Morgan Dickerson was the winner of that division, riding Disaronno VT, the only U25 pair to go fault-free.

Concluding the Ranch & Coast Classic, Nayel Nassar and Lordan stepped up for the win in the $60,000 Grand Prix of California, presented by Equ Lifestyle. In the the Interactive Mortgage Horses 10&U Futurity, it was Lauren Crooks and Dora the Explorer at the top of the leaderboard, followed by Coupis, ridden by Rich Fellers; and Vancouver 45 with Michelle Parker in the irons.

Excerpted from Blenheim EquiSports press release.


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