Jill Gaffney and Carlton Cafe Steal the Win in the $25,000 World Equestrian Center Grand Prix
Spectators packed the Sanctuary Arena grandstands this evening for exciting jumper action in the $25,000 World Equestrian Center Grand Prix and the $7,500 Futures Prix 1.30m sponsored by Voltaire Design. More than fifty horse and rider combinations competed between the two classes. Only five pairs made it to the Grand Prix jump off while the Futures Prix saw tight competition with less than one second separating the top five placings.
$25,000 World Equestrian Center Grand Prix
The $25,000 World Equestrian Center Grand Prix saw twenty five entries contest a course designed by Bobby Murphy of Lexington, Kentucky that featured three double combinations and fifteen jumping efforts in all. Five entries managed a clear first round and advanced to the jump off, but it was Jill Gaffney and Freestyling Farms, LLC’s Carlton Cafe (Carlton Clover x Moytura Spook) who captured the win with two artfully executed inside turns that no other entries even attempted.
First to jump a clear first round was Kate Gluckman aboard her own UNCLE AD W Z (Untouchable Z x Annie Z). The pair earned top placings at Tryon Fall Festival 2 in North Carolina just one month ago, taking a third place in the $15,000 Jumper Classic 1.35m. This afternoon, Gluckman and the thirteen year old Belgian Warmblood gelding were quick in the first round, jumping clear in a time of 75.931 seconds well within the time allowed of 82 seconds. The pair later returned first in the jump off, racing through the course but pulling one unlucky rail in a time of 43.928 seconds. Their fast time was still enough to secure the duo a third place finish.
One of just two double clear entries in the class was Jill Gaffney and Freestyling Farms, LLC’s Carlton Cafe (Carlton Clover x Moytura Spook). The pair earned first place in the $25,000 World Equestrian Center Grand Prix during the third week of the World Equestrian Center Fall Horse Shows in October, and returned to the Sanctuary Arena this afternoon in hopes of claiming another victory. Gaffney and the scopey thirteen year old Irish Sport Horse mare blazed through the first course with all rails up in 74.436 seconds. The pair returned for the jump off near the end of the order, managing inside turns to the combination and to fence eight that no other entries attempted. Their efforts paid off as they galloped through the timers with a second clear round in 38.501 seconds for the win in the class.
Michael Burnett also rode double clear aboard his own Chagrand (Chacco Blue x Centogrina). The pair took third place in the $50,000 World Equestrian Center Grand Prix sponsored by Buckeye Nutrition during the fourth week of the World Equestrian Center Fall Horse Shows in October. Burnett and the ten year old Oldenburg gelding managed the fastest first round of the class with all rails up in a time of 67.175 seconds, signaling that they would be strong competitors on the short course. They were last to return for the jump off, picking up even more pace and speeding through the course in 39.946 seconds for a second place finish.
Gaffney stuck around to chat with us ringside after the awards ceremony, “Bobby built a great course, it was really nice. I thought three to four a-b was a really good question where you could hold out in seven strides or go a little more direct in six. I did the seven on both of mine and it worked out really well. I doubted it a little bit, but my husband said seven is the right choice.”
When asked about her strategy in the jump off, Gaffney replied, “The jump off was perfectly suited for my mare. For a little horse (she’s only 16 hands) she has a massive gallop. She rides much bigger than that, she doesn’t ride like a small horse. I knew that Ashley and Michael would be fast, so I knew I had to go really quick. My mare turns so well and has such a massive gallop, so it worked out.”
Gaffney also added, “We had some great help this week from Kelby and Haley Kane, so they get the Groom’s Award and a huge thank you.” Although Gaffney joked “my husband Trevor has been replaced.” She added “I do want to thank Trevor, though, because I could not do this without him. We’re a great team.”
$25,000 World Equestrian Center Grand Prix Results
- Carlton Café, Jill M. Gaffney – 0 | 0 | 38.501
- Chagrand, Michael D. Burnett – 0 | 0 | 39.946
- UNCLE AD W Z, Kate Gluckman – 0 | 4 | 43.928
- Fancy Roos VDL, Ashley Fleishhacker – 0 | 4 | 46.905
- Durango VDL, Ashley Fleishhacker – 0 | 12 | 49.651
- Igor, Brooke Cudmore – 4 | 71.672
- Angelo, David Q. Beisel – 4 | 73.351
- Artiflex R, Raquel Mazur – 4 | 73.402
- Coneja, Karen Cudmore – 4 | 75.028
- Mauna Lani, Lanie Thomas – 4 | 75.039
$7,500 Futures Prix 1.30m
The $7,500 Futures Prix 1.30m sponsored by Voltaire Design saw twenty eight entries over a similar course designed by Bobby Murphy. The top five placings in the Futures Prix were separated by just under one second and it was ultimately Richard Rinehart and Taylor Repchick’s Leonard van Dorperheide (Diamant De Semilly x Hortense) that ended up at the top of the leaderboard.
The pace in the Futures Prix was set by Sam Pegg and Michael Pegg’s Shaia de Macheco (Kannan x Diamond D Escerti). No strangers to the winner’s circle, the pair took first place in the $5,000 Jaguar Land Rover Thornell Open Welcome at the Show Jump for Heart Charity Show just last Summer. Pegg and the seventeen year old mare were quick in the first round, jumping clear in a time of 73.868 seconds, well under the time allowed of 84 seconds. The pair continued straight to the jump off of the Table II 2b event, jumping a second clear round in 33.143 seconds.
Pegg and Shaia de Macheco held their lead in the class until Richard Rinehart and Taylor Repchick’s massive gray Leonard van Dorperheide (Diamant De Semilly x Hortense) entered the ring. The pair regularly take top placings in 1.20-1.30m jumper classes. This afternoon, Rineheart and the eight year old Belgian Warmblood gelding were quick and clear in the first round in a time of 73.008 seconds. The pair continued straight to the jump off, blazing through the course and taking inside turns to fences nine and eleven. Rineheart and Leonard van Dorperheide sped through the timers with a clear round in 33.143 seconds, moving to the top of the scoreboard.
Last in the order was Michael Kocher and Woodland Hills’ Dillandra (Zapatero VDL x Willandra). The pair have been sweeping the 1.20-1.30m jumper classes recently and were ready to compete in this afternoon’s Futures Prix. Kocher and the eleven year old Dutch Warmblood mare managed one of the fastest first rounds of the class, jumping clear in a time of 71.020. The pair advanced straight to the jump off, navigating a second clear round in a time of 33.205 seconds, moving into second place.
We caught up with Rinehart after the awards ceremony to chat about his win, “I was excited for the class. This is the second time I’ve shown this horse in the Futures Prix so I knew he was going to be good, but I really didn’t expect him to win. This is his second win. We started the jump off and it just unfolded very nicely.”
Rinehart gave us some insight on his winning mount on Leonard van Dorperheide, “I’ve ridden him off and on for the past six months, which is becoming very fun. I’d like to thank the owner Taylor Repchick for letting me ride him.”
“All the horses I rode in this class were really good tonight,” added Rinehart.
$7,500 Futures Prix 1.30m Results
- Leonard van Dorperheide, Richard L. Rinehart – 0 | 0 | 33.143
- Dillandra, Michael Kocher – 0 | 0 | 33.205
- Shaia de Macheco, Sam Pegg – 0 | 0 | 33.723
- La Dolce Vita VDL, Richard L. Rinehart – 0 | 0 | 33.983
- Cassina GK, Alexis P. Bodo – 0 | 0 | 34.055
- Southern Rose, Brooke Cudmore – 0 | 0 | 34.651
- HRH van de Elsakker, Kama Godek – 0 | 0 | 35.809
- Colton Playtime, Alexis P. Bodo – 0 | 0 | 35.949
- Aces High, Greg Kuti – 0 | 0 36.611
- MTM Maguire, Sara Long – 0 | 0 | 41.858
Photos courtesy of Andrew Ryback Photography.