Wayne, Ill. – July 31, 2019 – On the second day of competition in Equifest II, jumper riders returned to the Grand Prix Arena at Lamplight for another day of packed competition. Before some of the week’s highlight classes kick off with the $25,000 Welcome Grand Prix on Thursday and the $50,000 John Deere Grand Prix on Saturday, riders prepared with the 1.35m Open Jumpers. Proving their affinity for speed, Dorothy Douglas and MTM Cornada rode to a clear victory in the competitive class.
The course, built by Leopoldo Palacias, required speed of the riders as they only had one round to claim their placing on the leaderboard. The first to go clear and take an early lead in the class was professional Steve Schaeffer aboard Frascati, owned by Wyndmont Inc. The pair rode skillfully over all eleven obstacles, finishing in just 61.892 seconds.
Other combinations were unable to surpass Schaeffer’s clear and fast time, often knocking a rail until rider Liz Atkins and Carletta entered the ring. Guiding the mare owned by Benchmark Stables LLC through the windy course, going clear and taking a new leading time of 60.932 seconds. With a new time to challenge, Douglas rode MTM Cornada into the arena, aiming for a clear effort. She rode the 10-year-old mare, a new mount for her and Davenport Farms, carefully around the course, leaving up all the rails and finishing in a speedy 57.417 seconds. Douglas’ time remained undefeated throughout the rest of the class, but Schaeffer beat his first mount’s time that sat in third place, piloting Wyndmont Inc.’s Alter Ego into the position with a clear round and slightly faster time of 61.768 seconds.
In the 1.30m Open Jumper class, Mikayla Foster rode her own Ashville Rock into the winner’s circle with double-clear rounds and a jump-off time of 33.267 seconds. Ashley Fleischhacker and Ashland Show Stables LLC’s Durango VDL took home a second place finish with clear efforts and a jump-off time of 36.949 seconds. Laura Roesing and her own Darco’s Lynx completed the top three in the class, finishing with a 4-fault effort in the jump-off and a time of 41.098 seconds.
Jumper competition will resume at the Chicago Festival of the Horse on Thursday, Aug. 1 with the $25,000 Welcome Grand Prix set to begin at 4 p.m.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Dorothy Douglas – 1.35m Open Jumpers winner
On MTM Cornada:
“She is a new ride for me. Davenport Farms, Michelle and Abigail Davenport, they own another mare that I ride in the grand prix, Through the Looking Glass. They just bought her [Cornada] on our last trip to Europe. She is a 10-year-old, we actually watched her show in Germany and do a big 1.50m class. She flew, did quarantine for 21 days and this is my third time riding her here. We did some little tweaks on the bridles and here we are. I came out of the ring and thought ‘this is totally my horse.’ You fly over to Europe and try horses, but it’s usually a little time in between the last time you rode them and they get here. I really felt like after the class today that this is totally my next grand prix horse.”
On her round:
“I think I need to get to know her stride a little bit more, so I overdid it a little just because I don’t know her that well. I thought the track was great. I think I could have maybe left out one step from the vertical on the end, I ended up doing eight to this oxer, but looking back I could have maybe left out one step if I knew her a little more. We also did an inside turn after the in-and-out. I thought it was a really nice speed round to get to know my new horse.”
On her future plans with MTM Cornada:
“I think our plan right now is to just get her fit. She feels a little bit down from quarantine, I think the flight takes a little bit out of them. Moving forward it is getting them fit and finishing off the week with maybe another 1.35m or 1.40m. Maybe we will do the Grand Prix tomorrow, but I’m not sure yet. We will just keep on moving up. The Davenports have been customers of ours for a couple years now, the daughter owns MTM Exceptional who I ride in a lot of the derbies and she rides him in the amateurs. It’s fun to do everything with Mike and Tracy, who have an incredible eye for horses and teach people how to ride, and have someone else who wants to back you and go to fun horse shows. It’s really cool. I’ve been with them for about eight years now. I give it all I have, Mike and Tracy are amazing.”
1.35m Open Jumpers
Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults / Time
1. Dorothy Douglas / MTM Cornada / Davenport Farms / 0 / 57.417
2. Liz Atkins / Carletta / Benchmark Stables LLC / 0 / 60.932
3. Steve Schaeffer / Alter Ego / Wyndmont Inc / 0 / 61.768
4. Steve Schaeffer / Frascati / Wyndmont Inc / 0 / 61.892
5. Alexandra Veleris / Peter Pan / Third Coast Equestrian LLC / 2 / 68.01
6. Jacqueline Steffens / Gap Van De Kai / Carson Grisham / 4 / 64.421
7. Jacqueline Steffens / Calordo / Bertrand Legriffon / 7 / 69.154
8. Mark McKone / Fearless / Mark McKone / 8 / 63.386
9. Anna Hallene / Grappa / Glenwood Farm LLC / 8 / 65.105
10. Maggie Jayne / Lander / Jonathan Cohen / 8 / 70.289