Wellington, Fla. – Feb. 10, 2017 – The CP Palm Beach Masters CSI3*-W, a world-class international show jumping event and leg of the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League, concluded its second year, running Feb. 2–5, at the incredible Deeridge Farms in the heart of the winter equestrian capital of the world, Wellington, Florida.
The stand-alone event, presented by SOVARO®, welcomed the world's most talented show jumping athletes to the Jacobs family's private equestrian estate to host one of the final two East Coast qualifying events in the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League.
Spectators gathered around the Hollow Brook Wealth Management Grand Prix Field on Feb. 2, opening day of the 2017 event, to watch the $35,000 CP Welcome Stake CSI3*.
Representing the USA, it was Adam Prudent and Plain Bay Sales' Vasco who walked away with the first FEI win of the week in Section A of the $35,000 CP Welcome Stake CSI3* out of 51 starters. In Section B, Ireland's Daniel Coyle took the top two spots with Simba De La Roque, owned by Susan Grange, and Cita, owned by Susan and Ariel Grange. Coyle was second in the order of go to tackle the Alan Wade and Nigel Jess-designed course with Simba De La Roque, taking the early lead in 57.130 seconds. Coyle returned 28 rounds later and rode Cita to a time of 59.800 seconds to also grab second place honors.
In the Deeridge Jumper Ring on Thursday, Luis Larrazabal and Quintus Fabius, owned by Guillermo Pacanin, and Coyle and Farona, owned by Susan and Ariel Grange, shared the top spot in a California Split in the $7,500 Trelawny Farm 1.30m Jumpers, while Ariel Bluman rode Corona 120, owned by R.J. Equestrian Group, to victory in the $2,500 Taylor Harris Insurance Services 1.20m Jumpers.
Friday's highlight was the $35,000 SOVARO® Longines FEI World Cup™ Qualifier CSI3*-W in the Hollow Brook Wealth Management Grand Prix Field. Ninety-eight international horses and athletes vied for the top 40 spots to advance to Sunday's grand finale.
Olympic silver medalist and four-time Pan American Games gold medalist, Ian Millar (CAN), also known as "Captain Canada," piloted veteran mount Dixson, owned by Susan and Ariel Grange, to the fastest jump-off time of 38.260 seconds to secure the win.
"This year the field has really been brought up to modern standards, and it would be able to take serious rain if it had to," Millar said. "Look at the traffic the field has had in two days, and it looks pretty darn fresh. What do we know about the Jacobs? If they're going to do something, they're going to do it right. Everything they do is done first class, and this is no exception."
Due to the large number of entries in Friday's qualifier, the second fastest duo, Beezie Madden (USA) and Breitling LS, owned by Abigail Wexner, shared the top spot and prize money with Millar. They crossed the finish line in 39.800 seconds.
Earlier in the day on Friday in the Deeridge Jumper Ring, the $15,000 1.35m Jumpers once again went to Coyle and Larrazabal in a California Split. Coyle rode Susan and Ariel Grange's Martha Louise to a time of 55.348 seconds, while Larrazabal stopped the timers with San Francisco Stables LLC's Champion For Volt in 56.028 seconds.
In the $2,000 1.10m Jumpers, Samantha Johnson and her own Gallant took the first place prize, besting a field of 14 in the jump-off, in 38.735 seconds. Wrapping up competition in the Deeridge Jumper Ring on Friday was the $2,500 1.20m Jumpers, which went to Jonathan Corrigan and Degenmoor Farm Inc.'s Coachella in 30.718 seconds.
Saturday's feature class was the $25,000 Upperville Colt and Horse Show 1.40m Jumpers, presented by Attention Span Media, in the Hollow Brook Wealth Management Grand Prix Field. With over 100 horse and rider combinations entered in the class, the competition was once again split into two sections. Ireland's Darragh Kenny and Bolero 111, owned by Kerry Anne LLC, secured the win in Section A, while the USA's Taylor Land and her family's own Nepal took the first place prize in Section B.
Taking the first win of the day in the Deeridge Jumper Ring was Brianne Link and her own Bilbao in the $2,500 1.10m Jumpers in a time of 30.988 seconds. Then it was Flo Fulton Miller and her own Ruby who grabbed the blue ribbon in the $5,000 1.25m Jumpers in 38.105 seconds. The $10,000 Trelawny Farm 1.30m Jumpers closed out competition in the Deeridge Jumper Ring on Saturday with Kelly Soleau-Millar and C.F. Farms' Hoolie Hoo taking the win in 33.117 seconds.
Crowds of spectators looked on as 40 of the world's top riders participated in the grand finale on Sunday: the $216,000 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Wellington CSI3*-W, presented by SOVARO®. At just 26 years old, Egypt's Nayel Nassar bested the field of international veterans to run away with the win aboard his longtime partner, Lordan.
Only 10 of 40 horse-and-rider combinations successfully navigated Alan Wade and Nigel Jess' first round track, which was set at 1.60m in height, to advance to the jump-off, where Nassar earned the win with a blazing fast time of 38.15 seconds.
"Honestly, it doesn't get much better than this," Nassar said. "I didn't expect to win, being my first show of the year, but Lordan is such an incredible trier, and I know him like the back of my hand at this point. In the jump-off, I just let it rip, and he answered the questions. He's such an incredible partner; I've had him for so long that I just feel blessed any time I get to go into the ring with him."
Finishing in second after the difficult jump-off was Nassar's former teacher, the USA's Laura Kraut and Zeremonie, owned by Old Willow Farms LLC. Kraut, who trained Nassar back in 2012, finished hot on her former student's heels with her time of 39.92 seconds.
"I really tried to catch Nayel," Kraut laughed. "I even got to see him go, and I couldn't beat him. I think he is one of the most talented young riders to come along in a while. It's no surprise he's sitting where he is."
Kraut continued, "Thank you to the Jacobs for giving this opportunity to us to jump on the best footing in the world. We jump in Spain and in Italy on some fantastic surfaces, and this is no different. I couldn't believe the way the courses were built, and when you rode in, you hardly saw a hoofprint. It was just miraculous how well it jumped."
Sergio Alvarez Moya of Spain rode his own Arrayan across the wire in a time of 39.95 seconds, settling for the third place spot after Nassar followed immediately in the order to steal his lead.
Taylor Harris Insurance Services, one of the nation's most reliable and popular providers of equine insurance, provided and sponsored the beautiful Taylor Harris Club that was the center for VIP hospitality at the 2017 CP Palm Beach Masters.
This year, the club offered a gorgeous, newly-designed enclosure, featuring a bird's eye view of the stunning grass field and an equally perfect view of the all-weather arena on the other side of the club. The Taylor Harris Club featured fine dining ringside for an experience like no other and included deluxe food and beverages daily as well as tickets to all equestrian competitions and access to all VIP events.
The 2017 CP Palm Beach Masters, presented by SOVARO®, has received rave reviews, and the Jacobs family looks forward to hosting top athletes again at Deeridge Farms for the 2018 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Wellington CSI3*-W.
Organizers of the Palm Beach Masters would like to thank 2017 sponsors, exhibitors and show jumping fans alike who helped make this year's event an astounding success! See you again in 2018!