Tonight’s $2,500 USHJA National Hunter Derby saw a fantastic win for the second consecutive week by Jennifer Nadalin and Daniela Casline’s Stellar (Quintender x Carmen). Twenty seven entries contested tonight’s class, but Nadalin and Stellar proved themselves unbeatable with their brilliant performance for the second week in a row. With five of her six mounts placing in the top ten, Nadalin could not have been more thrilled with her horses and her team that worked together to make the evening a success for Sugar Run Farm.
Tonight’s $2,500 USHJA National Hunter Derby was designed by Bobby Murphy of Lexington, Kentucky and featured a flowing course with natural obstacles that a horse and rider might encounter in the hunt field. The course began over a brick vertical at the top of the ring, then asked entries to continue down the diagonal over a natural branch oxer. From there, entries continued up the rail over a log vertical that led to a stone one stride line. Entries then rounded the top of the ring to jump a skinny brush option on the rail, then bent across the diagonal to a natural branch oxer option. Next, entries continued past the ingate to jump a birch vertical option on the rail, then bent to a Tuscan-inspired oxer option. To finish, entries rounded the top of the ring and rode down the diagonal to jump a stone and brick oxer.
Near the top of the order of go was Christopher Coberley aboard Aizlynn Radwanski’s No Introduction. Owner Aizlynn Radwanski has previously taken top placings aboard No Introduction in the Amateur Owner Hunters, and the striking eleven year old bay Warmblood gelding was prepared to wow again tonight. Coberley and No Introduction delivered a pleasant first round, taking all four high options for a score of 84.
Shortly after, Jennifer Nadalin and last week’s winner of the $2,500 USHJA National Hunter Derby, Daniela Casline’s Stellar (Quintender x Carmen), entered the ring. The pair had set a high standard for themselves last week with scores of 86 and 89, and were prepared to repeat that performance tonight. Nadalin and Stellar jumped a lovely course, taking all four high options for a score of 87, establishing themselves as one of the leading pairs in the first round.
The highest first round score of the Derby was awarded to Dominika Silvestri and her own Nice (Nintender x Sarastra). The pair have been regulars in the Equitation, Medal and Junior Hunter divisions at shows throughout the Northeast, and have taken plenty of top placings in their respective classes. The pair were breathtaking in the first round, brilliantly navigating each fence with stunning accuracy. Silvestri and Nice took all four high options and earned a score of 89 in the first round.
The ring was reset for the handy round as the top twelve entries from the first round prepared to return. With a cutoff to return of 78, it was still anyone’s game. The course for the handy round began over the natural branch oxer option on the diagonal heading home, then continued past the ingate to roll back to a birch trot fence parallel to the ingate. Entries then continued up the rail to jump the stone one stride line, then rounded the top of the ring and continued down the diagonal over the stone and brick oxer. From there, entries rolled back to catch the Tuscan-inspired oxer option, then finished over the option line on the rail heading home.
Coberley and No Introduction returned about midway through the handy round. The pair opted to take every possible inside turn, and No Introduction jumped stylishly, taking each of the four high options. The pair earned a score of 89 for their effort in the handy round, bringing their two round total to 173, the highest score thus far.
Silvestri and Nice returned shortly after. Their extensive experience in the Equitation ring demonstrated an adjustability that allowed them to smoothly take inside turns throughout the course. Silvestri and Nice opted, again, to take all four high options, and earned a score of 83.5. This brought their two round total to 172.5, positioning them comfortably in second place.
Last to retuen was Nadalin and Stellar. The pair commanded attention throughout their round, as Stellar jumped brilliantly, with tight knees and a beautiful arc over each fence. Nadalin and Stellar navigated the inside turns with ease, finding each fence perfectly in stride. The pair took all four high options, earning a score of 90, the highest score of the Derby, which brought their two round total to 177 and secured the win. In the winner’s circle, the pair were awarded a Horseware cooler, a blue ribbon and a share of the prize money. Victoria Vogel, Stellar’s groom for tonight’s Derby, was also awarded the Groom’s Award which included $100 cash and a $50 WEC Gift Card, for the mare’s beautiful turnout.
Jennifer Nadalin and Chris Eadline of Sugar Run Farm of Plain City, Ohio took a moment to chat with us after the Derby about Nadalin’s win aboard Stellar. “Stellar is wonderful,” Eadline shared about the talented bay Hanoverian mare, “She has been a wonderful gift to Daniela Casline and her family, who suffered a loss of a horse over the Summer.” Stellar is known around the barn as being sweet and lovable, and she and owner Daniela Casline share a special connection that is apparent when they are together.
Nadalin went on to comment about tonight’s course, “The course was great tonight. It rode great for all of the horses. I’m also really proud of my daughter, Caroline, tonight, because she rode two fantastic rounds aboard her new horse, C Beyond. We love being here at World Equestrian Center. We love the facilities, we love the people, we love the footing. We are just finishing up three weeks of showing here, and we’ll take two weeks off and be back for another three weeks.”
Nadalin also added a personal note of gratitude for her team: “I want to thank the entire team, from the horses to my family, to the customers and friends, to the assistant trainers, to all of the grooms. Thank you Chris and Caroline, my farm family, Katie Borden, Tanya Truszkowski, Victoria Vogel, Jackie Small and Chase Passarella. I couldn’t do this without them!”
Watch Jennifer Nadalin and Stellar’s winning round, courtesy of ShowNet
$2,500 USHJA National Hunter Derby Results
- Stellar, Jennifer Nadalin – 87 | 90 | 177
- No Introduction, Christopher Coberlry – 84 | 89 | 173
- Nice, Dominika Silvestri – 89 | 83.5 | 172.5
- VDL Zingaro H, Jennifer Nadalin – 79 | 87 | 166
- Westeros, Jennifer Nadalin – 79.5 | 85 | 164.5
- Roc’s All That, Taylor Holstead – 82 | 81 | 163
- Maximus L, Jennifer Nadalin – 81.5 | 80 | 161.5
- Promise Me, Gabrielle Smoller – 81 | 78 | 159
- Monaco, Michaella Gerlacher – 86 | 69 | 155
- C Beyond, Caroline Nadalin – 80.5 | 47 | 127.5
Photos courtesy of Andrew Ryback Photography.