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Jimmy Torano and Marlo Win $10,000 Mini Prix Sponsored by the Escada Company Store and Presented by Manchester Designer Outlets at the 2006 Vermont Summer Festival
East Dorset, Vermont – July 21, 2006 — It was déjà vu for Jimmy Torano of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, and the big gray mare Marlo, winners of Friday’s $10,000 Mini Prix Sponsored by the Escada Company Store at the Manchester Classic Horse Show running July 16-23 in East Dorset, Vermont.
Mirroring last year, this duo had the lead-off position in the Mini Prix of the second week of the Vermont Summer Festival, setting the pace and holding it for the entire class to claim victory.
Torano has had the ride on Marlo, a nine-year-old Dutch mare by Corland that he owns with Sir Ruly, Inc., for 18 months. The talented mare made her Grand Prix debut at the 2005 Vermont Summer Festival in the $30,000 Otter Creek Grand Prix during Week 2 and won that as well. “Last year, Marlo showed in three classes here and won all three,” said Torano. “Today, she felt great. That’s her first class in the ring this week. She’s gotten a lot of experience and she’s very confident.”
Torano and Marlo topped a field of 18 horses today and collected $3,000 in prize money plus an Escada “Pebble” tote bag valued at $1,000. Amy Feiden, store manager of the Manchester Escada Company Store, and her daughter, Lead Line rider Olivia Cook, participated in the awards presentation. The 2006 Vermont Summer Festival Mini Prix Series is presented by Manchester Designer Outlets.
For the $10,000 Mini Prix, course designer Michel Vaillancourt of Canada built a first round track of 12 fences, which included a double at Fence 7 and a triple at Fence 9. Horses that jumped clean over the first round remained in the ring for the immediate jump-off over a shortened course of seven obstacles that included the 7AB fence, with Time Allowed set at 42 seconds.
Torano and Marlo were first on the roster to jump the course and put in a double clear performance, clocking in clean over the jump-off track in 33.706 seconds. The next 17 horses chased Torano’s time, and though six horses went double-clear, none could catch the blazing fast Marlo in the jump-off, who kept her lead by nearly two seconds over her closest competitor.
Torano enjoyed not only being the first to go clean in the class, but also being able to set a jump-off pace so fast that it proved to be unbeatable. “It was nice – that’s always nice,” he acknowledged.
To ride the fastest route over the jump-off, Torano noted that there were three inside options and he took all three of them. “From the first fence to the second one in the jump-off there was an inside turn that was a little bit tight and I really turned back snug on it,” he explained. “There was an inside turn over to the double and I turned back really tight there. After fence number 14, there was another inside option. Basically for the jump-off, most people took all the inside options. I just got it done a little quicker than the other people. I really attribute a lot of that to my mare. I really can trust her. She’s just got so much scope. She’s a very courageous mare. You never have to worry about her, you can trust her all the time.”
Lexy Reed of Ocala, Florida, riding her own Ludwig came closest to challenging the leader, going clean in 35.515 seconds over the tiebreaker track for second place. Dick Carvin of La Canada, California, riding Hazel for owner Priscilla Tampkin and China Blue Farm delivered a clear trip in 35.804 seconds for third.
Torano said that for Sunday’s $30,000 Otter Creek Grand Prix (July 23) he plans to ride four or five horses, with one of those mounts being the defending champion, Marlo.
Featuring more than $650,000 in prize money, the Vermont Summer Festival includes a $10,000 Mini Prix each Friday and, for the first four weeks of competition, a $30,000 Sunday Grand Prix. The 2006 Vermont Summer Festival closes with the grand finale, the $50,000 Vermont Summer Celebration Grand Prix on Sunday, August 13. The Vermont Summer Festival is also a proud member event of the Show Jumping Hall Of Fame, the Marshall & Sterling League, and the North American League (NAL).
For more information about the 2006 Vermont Summer Festival, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.vt-summerfestival.com. For full show results, visit www.vt-summerfestival.com.