Nina Montross and Caprifol triumphed in the $10,000 NAL Children's Jumper Finals
Harrisburg, PA- October 16, 2012-
The Pennsylvania National Horse Show continued on Tuesday at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex, featuring both hunter and jumper classes. The professional hunter divisions concluded and named champions in the First Year Green, Second Year Green and High Performance. Then, the North American League Children’s Finals took place including an exciting jump-off round. Show jumping’s super stars took to the ring to start off the Open Jumpers in two classes: the $5,000 Speed Challenge and the $5,000 Power and Speed class.
Thirty top young riders from across the country qualified for the prestigious $10,000 North American League Children’s Jumper Finals to compete over Alan Wade’s challenging 1.15m course. Nina Montross was the high point rider leading into the event and she didn’t disappoint.
Many of the class’ horse and rider teams fell victim to the final fence of the course, fence 12, a red and white vertical with a white plank on top. The plank blended into the background and tested and eliminated many competitors.
Out of the 30, seven posted clear rounds and progressed to the jump off round. Of the seven, three went double clear. Belle Fulmer aboard her own Godspeed posted a time of 44.178. Noah Buhler and Shane finished the second track in 41.315. But it was Montross aboard Palm Meadow Farm’s Caprifol who had a blazing fast time that clocked in at 40.187 to win the class.
Amazingly, Montross, 14, from Bedford, NY and goes to school at Westminster School in Simsbury, CT, has only ridden once in the last few months. The busy student trains with Jimmy Torano.
“I’ve had her for almost two years,” she said of her horse, Caprifol. “She’s so fast. She’s my favorite- and my other horse, Ohio.”
Nina Montross and Caprifol
Montross has been riding since she was little. She started riding hunters but switched to jumpers, starting in pony jumpers in 2009/2010 and has been doing jumpers ever since. She was fifth in the NAL Finals at Harrisburg in 2011.
“My dream is to do Grand Prix when I’m older,” said Montross who is a freshman in high school.
The first two classes of the Open Jumper division also got underway today. Some of the world’s top riders competed in two classes- the $5,000 Open Jumper Speed Challenge and the $5,000 Open Jumper Power and Speed Class.
The Open Jumper Speed Class was a 1.40m race against the clock in one round with faults converted to time. Many riders chose to use the class as a schooling opportunity in preparation for the upcoming week’s competition, executing wide, slow and deliberate turns, clearly unconcerned with the time.
It was an incredibly fast performance from Laura Chapot aboard her own Bradberry that gave spectators something to cheer about and would set the time of 53.96 that would remain at the top of the leader board. Chapot executed incredibly tight and quick turns, in particular, from fence three to fence four and from fence seven to fence eight that gave her the edge to win the class.
Michael Murphy and Audi's Allouette Vh Lambr, owned by Team Rakowsky Equestrian/M. Murphy came in second with a time of 56.394. Chapot aboard Mary Chapot’s Zealous were third with a time of 56.732.
“I thought it was a nice first course,” said Chapot. “Brad is a very fast horse so I just tried to stick with the plan and give it a go. There are enough people that are trying to win the class that you have to make your best effort.”
Laura Chapot and Bradberry
“I have had this horse a number of years. He’s a specialist at the speeds. He’s won here before so hopefully we can continue the trend,” she said.
The Power and Speed Class, a 1.40m course consisted of two parts. In part one, horse and rider teams were to jump 8 efforts, time was not counted. Those who left the first course in tact would immediately continue to the jump off course, where faults and time decided the winner.
Twelve horse and rider teams would leave the rails in tact and progress to the jump off round. Of the twelve, six were double clear. Beezie Madden and Amadora, owned by Abigail Wexner, posted the fastest clear jump-off round to win the class, breaking the beam at 31.695. In second place, Richard Maloney and Equinimity LLC’s Let’s Go were faultless with a time of 33.292. Winnick, owned by Windsor Show Stable & Candy Tribble and ridden by Christine McCrea were third.
Beezie Madden and Amadora
“All my horses were great today,” said Madden. “ But Amadora was the one I wanted to get a good ribbon. She came through and had a beautiful, smooth round and still came out on top.”
Madden plans to do the Grand Prix de Penn National with Cortez. And Amadora or Cortez will do Pennsylvania Big Jump on Thursday night
“She’s nine and we’ve had her since she was five,” she said of Amadora. “She’s a real strong character for a mare. She’s starting to come around now and she’s becoming easy. This is a great end for the year for her.”
The professional hunter classes finished up earlier in the day. In the First Year Green Handy Hunters, the win went to Falcon, owned by the Barracks and ridden by Maria Shannon. The pair scored an 84. Louise Serio was second with Bridget Hallman and Merrylegs South”s Casino who earned an 83.5. Minion, owned by Marcia Castleman and ridden by Elizabeth Solterscored an 83 which placed them third.
In today’s second First Year Green class, Serio and Casino were the winners with a score of 86. Thomas Brennan rode Lynn Ellen Rice’s Gramercy Park and scored an 85, which put them in second place. As Always, owned by Jennifer Smith and ridden by Jennifer Hannan earned an 84 and third place.
Louise Serio and Casino
When the scores were tallied, Serio and Casino came out on top and were named the First Year Green Champions. The Reserve Championship went to Pony Lane Farm’s Frederick, ridden by Maggie Jayne.
“We bought him during Florida this year from Mindy Darst,” shared Serio about Casino. “He’s just really come into himself. We’ve had a lot of success with him but I was really pleased at how he was here. He was in the top three in every class, which is really awesome.”
Serio has been showing Casino in the First Years and, long-time client, Bridget Hallman, will show him in the 3’3” Amateurs-Owners in Florida.
“He’s not spooky- things don’t bother him.,” she said. “He’s very scopey and just lovely to have. I showed him in Kentucky in the indoor in August. This is his first time here.“
The first class of the Second Year Green Hunters was the handy round. Stay Tuned, owned by Emma Gerber and piloted by Elizabeth Solter earned the exceptional score of 88 to win the class. Dr. Betsee Parker’s Listen, ridden by Victoria Colvin was second with an 87. Chris Payne rode Holden, owned by Susan Moriconi to third place with an 86.
In the last class of the Second Year Green Hunters, Colvin and Inclusive, also owned by Dr. Parker, earned the highest score of 88. In second place, Peter Pletcher and Becky Gochman’s Empire were second with an 87 and Holden and Payne earned the third place prize scoring an 86.
Peter Pletcher and Empire
It was Becky Gochman’s brown stallion, Empire, expertly ridden by Peter Pletcher that earned the Second Year Green Championship. Colvin and Dr. Parker’s Inclusive were awarded the Reserve Championship.
“I started riding him- probably three months ago’ said Pletcher. “Becky does him in the amateurs. He was with Scott Stewart before. He’s been easy, he has a great mind. He will jump anything anywhere, indoor/outdoor- super, super brave. You can always count on him. We had a successful Capital Challenge and a good start here.”
The High Performance Hunters resumed today. In the day’s first class, Hunt Tosh rode Rosalynn for Dr. Betsee Parker to the win with a score of 87. Steven Border’s Exupery ridden by Tommi Clark earned an 86 and the second place prize. Elizabeth Soltar and Susan Darragh’s Zidane won the yellow ribbon with their score of 85.
In the handy round of the High Performance Hunters, Clark and Exupery earned an 86 and the win. Greg Crolick and Orchard Lake Farm’s Carson were second with a score of 84. Solter and Zidane scored an 83 and third place.
Tommi Clark and Exupery with owner Steven Border
The High Performance Hunter Championship was awarded to Exupery and Tommi Clark for their consistently exceptional performances. The Reserve Championship went to Hunt Tosh and Rosalynn.
Clark, 22 a busy professional from Californian made the trip to show Exupery or “Super” as he’s known in the barn. She splits her time between clients at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center and the Malibu Equestrian Center. Super was the High Performance year-end Zone 10 champion.
“I’m lucky, his owner wanted to bring him out,“ confided Clark. “Super has come here and won before. I was very lucky to be along for the ride. We’re going on to Washington after this.”
“As a young professional it is really nerve wracking to go against John French, Hunt Tosh and all of those. What Super has taught me is that if I work hard and try hard anything is possible.”
The Pennsylvania National Horse Show resumes for another exciting day on Wednesday showcasing the Conformation Hunters and Open Jumpers.