Wellington, Fla. – March 4, 2018 – Held at the picturesque Deeridge Farms as part of the new Palm Beach Masters series, the final round of the highly anticipated $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby saw Victoria Colvin and Brad Wolf’s Private Practice surpass a total of 55 entries to claim the top prize on Sunday afternoon.
The first half of the class began on Saturday, where riders fought for a spot in Sunday’s handy round. A score of 153 marked the cut-off from Saturday’s classic round. While traditionally the top 12 pairs return for the handy phase, 24 combinations were invited back to the expansive grass derby field in reverse order.
Sara Taylor of Marshall, Virginia, and Elizabeth Phillips’ No Doubt were the first pair to pass through the blue arches at the in-gate and gallop to the initial fence, a green oxer, to start off the handy round.
Each rider’s classic round score was added to Sunday’s results. Scores consisted of a base score for style, plus one point for each high option fence and up to 10 points for handiness.
The ever-calm and collected Colvin was able to maintain her composure in the class aboard the 8-year-old Holsteiner as the final exhibitor on course. They carried over their score of a high 194 from Saturday. Colvin navigated all four high options and displayed her mount’s rideability to impress the judging panel. They wrapped up Sunday’s class with 407 points.
Impressively, Sunday’s winning efforts marked only their second time in the show ring together. Previously, the gelding by Lordanos campaigned in the jumper ring, but Colvin always had her eye on him and thought he would also fit well in the hunter ring.
The course was designed by Steve Stephens and featured 10 fences ranging in height from 3’6” to 4’ strategically placed around the lush grass field. The track had four high option fences and required riders to tackle a trot fence mid-course.
Colvin also piloted Cuba, owned by John and Stephanie Ingram, LLC, to a twelfth place finish in the class.
Coming in second place was Hannah Isop riding Tracy Freels’ Red Ryder, who returned to the handy sitting in third place. Isop finished up behind Colvin with 388 points. Stepping Stone Farm’s Amy Momrow guided Aeroplane, owned by Melissa Wight, to round out the top three spots with a final score of 380.5.
While the $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby closed out the 2018 Deeridge Derby at Deeridge Farms, the Palm Beach Masters series will host the Palm Beach Open, the final event and latest addition to the series, March 22–25.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Tori Colvin – $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby winner
On the horse:
“I actually saw the horse for the first time about a year ago. I went to try my jumper, Chagrand, and I saw Private Practice in his stall. I love chestnuts with white and immediately I was drawn to him. Then this year, I saw him doing the Junior Hunters with Maddy Goetzmann. A week later Brad [Wolf] tried him and the rest is history. During WCHR week, I did the Green Hunters and qualified for the Hunter Spectacular. He was a little fresh under the lights — we didn’t know him really at all at that point so we weren’t sure what to expect. He leveled out by the end of that class. He’s been really spectacular here this week. He’s a really sharp horse — careful but not overly careful. I believe this year I’ll continue competing with him in the hunter divisions and maybe do a few more derbies to level him out a little for Brad to compete with him in the future.”
On riding on grass field:
“This is the second year I’ve competed here. It was nice to get away and be in a different venue for a weekend. It’s just beautiful here and such a special opportunity.”
On derby horses with jumper backgrounds:
“I think it is a great advantage. The derbies are starting to get bigger, height-wise, and there are more opportunities [to compete on] grass fields, which the jumpers see more of. I believe it is a huge advantage and we’re seeing more and more of that now in derby horses.”
Hannah Isop – $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby second place
On Steve Stephens’ course:
“Yesterday, I loved Steve’s course! I thought it worked really well for my horse. I was a little nervous about all of the left and tight turns but my horse handled it great.”
On the horse:
“We bought him in 2014. He was doing the training jumpers down here that year. We developed him as a hunter from there. He’s just coming back now after two years from an injury. We brought him back slowly and this is his first big class since then. I was very happy with him. He’s got such a big heart!”
Amy Momrow – $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby third place
On Steve Stephens’ course:
“First, I’d like to thank management and Deeridge [Farms] for this opportunity. Steve’s course yesterday was really open and it allowed us to have a nice rhythm and follow the course around and enjoy riding on the field. Today, I related this course to a jump-off course rather than a real handy because we all had to take the same track. It, again, gave us a chance to showcase being smooth, while enjoying the field.”
“We are so thankful he doesn’t realize his size. He’s probably pushing over 17.3 hands. He’s very sweet and very kind. He started as a jumper and was a little nervous when he made the move over to the hunter ring but he’s really settled nicely into his job.”
$50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby
Horse / Owner / Rider / Total
1. Private Practice / Brad Wolf / Victoria Colvin / 407.000
2. Red Ryder / Tracy Freels / Hannah Isop / 388.000
3. Aeroplane / Melissa Wight / Amy Momrow / 380.500
4. In the Know / Madeline Schaefer / Samantha Schaefer / 372.500
5. Vanderpump / Ashland Farms / Augusta Iwasaki / 369.250
6. Kensi / Emily Cherney / Kristy Herrera / 368.000
7. Corice Z / Claire Kenna / Jennifer Hannan / 362.500
8. El Primero / Meralex Farm, Inc. / Louise Serio / 361.500
9. Any Given Sunday / Hays Investment Corp. / Hunter Holloway / 359.750
10. Lautento / Nicodemus Farms / Grace Tuton / 356.000
11. Dedication / Dr. Betsee Parker / Emma Kurtz / 348.250
12. Cuba / John and Stephanie Ingram, LLC / Victoria Colvin / 345.500