Ocala, FL – A field of 45 international entries gathered at the WEC Grand Arena under the lights to contest the $75,000 CaptiveOne Advisors Grand Prix. FEI Level III course designer, Catsy Cruz (MEX) built the elaborate tracks that featured three challenging double combinations that caught out numerous competitors throughout the evening. Twelve pairs advanced to the jump-off and five jumped double clear, but the night belonged to Rowan Willis (AUS) who jumped to victory aboard his own Wellington Grey Goose (Corlensky x Grandira).
It was a winning day for Willis who earlier rode Copain to victory in the $10,000 Buckeye Nutrition Futures Prix.
Willis and Wellington Grey Goose were the seventh pair down the ramp into the WEC Grand Arena, producing a fast and clear first round in 74.146 seconds, well within the time allowed of 81 seconds.
Wellington Grey Goose is very special to Willis, “Goose [Wellington Grey Goose] is an incredible horse. I was lucky enough to have bred her in England, but she was very difficult as a young horse. It has taken some time and a few amazing people to get her up to the level she is at now. She’s really paying off all those hard years put in and is now incredible,” said Willis.
Willis and the speedy 11-year-old Warmblood mare were the third pair to return for the short course, “I really trust Goose, so I knew I could lay down a tough time, because I know that there were some really fast riders behind me. I was just trying to be as fast as I possibly could so I could finally win one,”
Willis and Wellington Grey Goose soared around the jump-off track, delighting spectators with their go-for-broke style and stopping the jump-off clock at 36.160 seconds, a time that proved uncatchable.
“I always have the best time showing here. There is always a strong field of riders and a great atmosphere. It’s really fun to compete here and have the crowd behind us. It makes it great for us riders and it makes us try harder,” stated Willis.
Second place honors went to Lauren Crooks and Louisiana Van De Moortelshoeve (Bamako De Muze x Wokina Van De Moortelshoeve) in tonight’s $75,000 CaptiveOne Advisors Grand Prix. Crooks and the 11-year-old Belgian Warmblood mare yielded a smooth first round in 78.062 seconds. The pair was the fifth horse-and-rider combination to return for the jump-off and cleared each fence with ease in just 37.873 seconds.
Dorothy Douglas and Davenport Farm’s MTM Through The Looking Glass (Arkan x Roshai’s Last Tango) were the final pair in the first round to deliver a clean ride in 77.228 seconds. Douglas and the 14-year-old KWPN mare closed out the $75,000 CaptiveOne Advisors Grand Prix with a blazing jump-off effort, taking tidy inside turns to stop the clock at 38.207 seconds for a third place finish.
Santiago Lambre & Cetano Van Aspergem Z received the fastest four-faulter award in the $75,000 CaptiveOne Advisors Grand Prix, delivering a time of 69.141 seconds in the first round, with one down.
Anne Bingler received the $5,000 ‘Luck of the Draw’ award.
$75,000 CaptiveOne Advisors Grand Prix Results:
1.Wellington Grey Goose, Rowan Willis (AUS), Rowan Willis: 0 | 0 | 36.160
2. Louisana Van De Moortelshoeve, Lauren Crooks (USA), Lauren Crooks: 0 | 0 | 37.873
3. MTM Through The Looking Glass, Dorothy Douglas (USA), Davenport Farm: 0 | 0 | 38.207
4. Chicago Hof Eversem Z, Cormac Hanley (IRL), Jared Wills: 0 | 0 | 40.094
5. Co Pilot, Chasen Scott Boggio (USA), Chasen Scott Boggio: 0 | 0 | 41.859
6. MTM Apple, Tracy Fenney (USA), MTM Farm: 0 | 4 | 36.522
7. Idalgo, Tom Foley (IRL), Tom Foley: 0 | 4 | 36.609
8. Locato Van Het Kapelhof, Christian Coyle (IRL), Christian Coyle: 0 | 4 | 38.399
9. Any, Kady Abrahamson (USA), Abrahamson Equestrian LLC: 0 | 4 | 38.578
10. Qinghai, Guido Klatte (GER), Guido Klatte International Horse Transport: 0 | 4 | 39.009