Ocala, FL – Week VII of the 2023 Ocala Summer Series welcomed a slew of top-notch athletes and they did not disappoint with blistering speed in jump-off rounds and sublime hunter rounds. Olympian Mattew Williams (AUS) opened the week with a victory aboard ABC Quantum Cruise in the $24,000 C. Jarvis Insurance Welcome Prix. Josh Dolan earned superior scores of a 96 and 97 with Something Blue in the $12,500 Golden Ocala Golf & Equestrian Club 3’6”-3’9” Hunter Derby and Luis Sabino Goncalves (POR) and Vick Du Croisy had everyone on the edge of their seats during the $100,000 MARS Equestrian Grand Prix. Read on for additional highlights.
Luis Sabino Goncalves (POR) and Vick Du Croisy scored a sweet victory in the $100,000 MARS Equestrian Grand Prix.
“It was a very fast jump-off, because you really had to canter and trust to go. One distance you say, woah, woah, you’re already third or fourth. Then I closed my eyes, and forgot, but then remembered I have a very smart and unbelievable mare.”
Luis Larrazabal and Belle De Muze snagged the $10,000 Buckeye Nutrition Futures Prix victory.
“I was very lucky to go last in the order, I was winning with my first horse for a while, but then Will went faster on both his horses. I knew my mare was naturally fast, so I tried to be as quick as I could and hopefully leave all the poles in their cups.”
Dreams came true for Something Blue and Josh Dolan in the $12,500 Golden Ocala Golf & Equestrian Club 3’6”-3’9” Hunter Derby.
“I’ve never received a 97 before, I have had a 96 a few times, but this was the first time I’ve ever had an overall score that high. It puts you on an emotional high, especially because we are going into the biggest event of the year for hunters in a few weeks and to be able to walk into that after this performance, it’s mind blowing. I couldn’t have ever dreamed it would happen.”
First time was a charm for Even Steven and Daniel Geitner in the $10,000 UF Veterinary Hospital USHJA National 3’ Open Hunter Derby.
“He’s such a neat horse. He’s a homebred for his owner and he’s just been a blast. I have been riding him for probably two years now. We did him last year in the Pre Greens and this year we are doing the First Years. His owner is up in Michigan for the summer and said to go try him in a derby while we are here and I think Steven likes it,”
Lillian Geitner followed in her father’s footsteps with Banks Mill in the $10,000 USHJA National 3’ Jr/Am Hunter Derby.
“My dad used to show him in the international derbies, so he knows the drill. I used to show him in the junior hunters, but now we just do the derbies. Hopefully one day we will do the international derbies together. He’s such an awesome horse and tries his best for me.”
Matthew Williams (AUS) and ABC Quantum Cruise traveled to the top in the $24,000 C. Jarvis Insurance Welcome Prix.
“I have been riding him since the beginning of January. He’s won a lot of classes throughout his career with anyone who has ever ridden him. It’s really just a pleasure to be his rider. He is always fighting for you and makes our lives easy because he wants to do that job.”
Adele Dewar landed a double victory on Friday in the $2,000 USHJA Pony Hunter Derby with Gold Coast and Down To A T.
Kimberly Narlinger and her own Luminous prevailed in the $3,500 WEC – Ocala 2’6” Non Pro Hunter Derby.
Congratulations to all competitors on another successful and fun week of equestrian sport!