East Dorset, Vt. – Aug. 2, 2018 – Marylisa Leffler of Brookeville, MD, won the $10,000 Vineyard Vines Welcome Stake on Thursday, August 2, during the fifth week of competition at the six-week Vermont Summer Festival, which continues through August 12 at Harold Beebe Farm in East Dorset, VT.
Leffler and her winning mount, Luminous, were one of six entries to jump the first-round, Gerry Briggs-designed course without fault to advance to the jump-off. David Jennings of Franklin, TN, and Gracieux van Seven Oaks, owned by Mary Katherine Hargreaves, were the first pair to jump off, setting the clear-round time to beat at 46.22 seconds.
The next in the ring, Amy Masterson of Loretto, ON, and Bentley, owned by DK Masterson Holdings, delivered another clear effort, but tripped the timers in 49.33 seconds for the eventual third place finish.
Jennings’ time would hold up for second place, with only Leffler besting his time to finish at the top of the leaderboard. She and Luminous, a nine-year-old warmblood mare owned by Rolling Acres, crossed the timers in 45.16 seconds to secure the win.
“She’s just been amazing; she is such a trier,” said Leffler, who acquired the mare in November 2017 and who is just returning to the show ring after injuring her shoulder in June. “I separated my [acromioclavicular joint] in my shoulder, so I didn’t do the inside turn back to fence three today. I’m still just a little cautious about over-doing it. I said I’d rather do that on Saturday [for the grand prix] then try to do it today.”
“She’s so game,” said Leffler, who has been attending the Vermont Summer Festival for more than 20 years. “I left out the stride up the first line, and I thought, ‘Well, if I did that, I’ll go ahead and leave out in the next one too!’
For the win, Leffler received a $1,000 gift card to Vineyard Vines in addition to her share of the prize money.
Leffler and Luminious will return to the grand prix ring on Saturday, when open jumper action continues with the $30,000 Manchester & the Mountains Grand Prix, presented by Purina.
$10,000 Vineyard Vines Welcome Stake
Rider / Hometown / Horse / R1 Faults / R2 Faults | Time
1. Marylisa Leffler / Brookeville, MD / Luminous / 0 / 0 | 45.169
2. David Jennings / Franklin, TN / Gracieux van Seven Oaks / 0 / 0 | 46.225
3. Amy Masterson / Loretto, ON / Bentley / 0 / 0 | 49.330
4. Jonathan Corrigan / Southampton, NY / Javas Keltic Mist / 0 / 4 | 44.147
5. Ashley Foster / Brookeville, MD / Deliante M / 0 / 4 | 46.415
6. Brenna Doherty / Laurel Hollow, NY / KM Whatever RV / 0 / 4 | 47.034
7. Amanda Strain / Deep River, CT / Casino Royale / 3
8. Anastasia Bezsylko / Harrisburg, PA / Cakao 2 / 7