Wellington, Fla. – March 4, 2018 – The United States’ Beezie Madden claimed victory on her home soil during Nations Cup week at the Winter Equestrian Festival when she topped an 11-horse jump-off with Abigail Wexner’s Breitling LS during the $205,000 Grand Prix CSIO4*, presented by Lugano Diamonds on Sunday. Madden was three seconds ahead of second place finisher Richie Moloney (IRL), who was aboard veteran mount Carrabis Z, owned by Equinimity LLC. The United States’ Adrienne Sternlicht was the pathfinder for the day and took home the third place award with Starlight Farm 1’s Cristalline.
Forty-five competitors turned out for the week’s final international competition, but only 11 managed to navigate Ken Krome’s technical track without error and advance to the jump-off. The tiebreaker featured a tight inside option to the second fence as well as a vertical-oxer double combination and a long gallop to the final oxer.
With 8 faults in the first round of Saturday night’s Nations Cup competition, the United States placed seventh and did not advance to the second round, but both Breitling LS and Cristalline jumped clear rounds on Saturday and returned for Sunday’s main event ready for action. Sternlicht was at the top of the order-of-go, making easy work of the first round track before returning for the jump-off. The pair performed faultlessly once again, setting the time to catch at 43.86 seconds during the jump-off.
Cristalline and Sternlicht held the lead for six more rounds, before Madden and Breitling LS tackled the track. They were one of the only pairs to opt for the inside turn after the first fence, and Breitling LS was careful over the fences, leaving every rail intact to gallop home in 40.49 seconds and take home the win.
Moloney attempted to catch Madden and Breitling LS with Carrabis Z, but the duo fell short with a clear time of 43.16 seconds to slide into the second place position, giving Madden the win on her home turf as the U.S. national anthem played over the loud speakers to close out Nations Cup week.
Week Nine of the Winter Equestrian Festival will get underway on Wednesday. With a CSI5* and 2* rating from the FEI, the event will feature the $132,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup on Thursday and the $384,000 Douglas Elliman Grand Prix CSI5* on Saturday night.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Beezie Madden – $205,000 CSIO 4* Grand Prix winner
On her plan for the week:
“My plan actually was to focus on the Nations Cup with Breitling [LS]. I also had my other horse, Con Taggio, [competing this week], who’s a young horse but just stepping up to the grand prix level. He did the WEF on Thursday. He was second in that, and my plan really was to do him in the grand prix, unless for some reason I didn’t do very many rounds in the Nations Cup. As it happened, I only did one. I wasn’t really hoping for that scenario — doing only one round. It just wasn’t our night as a team. It actually worked out nicely for Adrienne and me in the end. Like I said, the focus was the Nations Cup. Then when I only did one round, I said, ‘He felt fantastic.’ It’s nice, cool weather this week. It’s not so hot. He’s only scheduled to do one more week down here before the World Cup Finals so I thought he needed another class this week in order to build up his fitness for that.”
On her string of horses:
“Breitling LS is kind of climbing his way up there. We’ve had him for a while, and last year he had a great year. This year, he started off even better. He’s become one of those that when I’m riding him, I feel like I have a really good chance to do well. I think at the World Cup Finals, I’m going to take him and also Coach and leave Darry Lou to focus more on outdoor competitions. He’s new to me, and I need to get to know him before the rest of the summer.”
On Saturday’s Nations Cup:
“Last night was a great example of the level of the other teams coming up. It used to be kind of a big separation between the top three teams and then the bottom few, but we only had 8 faults and we didn’t get in the second round. I was kind of shocked after I went.”
Richie Moloney – Second place
On his jump-off:
“Carrabis [Z] felt even better for the jump-off than the first round. I’m very happy with him. He’s 15 years of age, and he still feels great. In the jump-off, I saw Beezie from one to two, and I knew that I couldn’t do that with him because he’s hard to turn straightaway when he lands. He jumps the other side of the jumps. I went as quick as I could without taking any risks, just leaving the jumps up. I’m very happy with second place.”
Adrienne Sternlicht – Third place
On her relationship with Cristalline:
“I feel incredibly privileged to have her and we have a really special relationship. I spend a lot of time with her at home. I sort of indulge her, perhaps a little bit too much sometimes McLain [Ward] says. We wander around the farm a lot together. Every time I hand walk her on grass she rolls. She lies down and has a good chunk of grass in her mouth. I just really enjoy being around her every day, and I feel really privileged to have her in my life.”
$205,000 Lugano Diamonds Grand Prix CSIO4*
Place / Horse / Rider / Country / R1 Faults | Time / R2 Faults | Time
1. Breitling LS / Beezie Madden / USA / 0 | 75.59 / 0 | 40.49
2. Carrabis Z / Richie Moloney / IRL / 0 | 79.80 / 0 | 43.16
3. Cristalline / Adrienne Sternlicht / 0 | 78.95/ 0 | 43.86
4. Parette / Lisa Carlsen / CAN / 0 | 78.59 / 0 | 47.58
5. RMF Echo / Denis Lynch / IRL / 0 | 79.34 / 4 | 41.27
6. HH Gigi’s Girl / McLain Ward / USA / 0 | 80.20 / 4 | 42.50
7. Super Sox / Lillie Keenan / USA / 0 | 79.01 / 4 | 43.91
8. Carlchen W / Alex Granato / USA / 0 | 77.22 / 4 | 45.42
9. Chaganus / Rodrigo Pessoa / BRA / 0 | 76.65 / 8 | 41.29
10. UT Majeur De Bre / Rodrigo Lambre / BRA / 0 | 80.76 / 8 | 44.15
11. Balou Du Revento / Jorge Matte Capde / CHI / 0 | 77.58 / RET
12. Eclatant / Petronella Anders / SWE / 4 | 77.45
For full results, click here.