Flying Dutchman Harrie Smolders soars tor victory in $100,000 President's Cup Grand Prix

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Jenny Ross for Phelps Media Group, Inc. International

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Photo Credit: Harrie Smolders and Exquis Oliver Q in $100,000 President’s Cup Grand Prix. Photo © 2006 Diana DeRosa. Photograph may be used only in relation to this PMG press release.

Flying Dutchman Harrie Smolders Soars for Victory in $100,000 President’s Cup Grand Prix at Washington International Horse Show

Heather Dobbs and Corlett Win $10,000 Junior Jumper Senators Cup

Washington, D.C. – October 28, 2006 – The $100,000 President’s Cup Grand Prix welcomed 25 top equestrians to the Verizon Center for an evening at one of the most prestigious and well-respected competitions of the year. Tonight’s class, the highlight of the Washington International Horse Show, was held under FEI Article 238.1.2, Article. 655.2, World Cup Rules, Time First Jump Off. The course was designed by renowned horseman Steve Stephens.

The time allowed was first set at 70 seconds and after Callen Solem and her mount Allison went clear in 75.36 seconds, the jury adjusted the speed limit to 76. Solem entered the arena third in the order and was the first to leave all of the rails in place. Kent Farrington, last year’s winner, had difficulty at fence three, and his horse Madison refused at the base of the plank vertical. After he made a tight turn back to the jump, the mare punched through the top rail, causing Farrington to retire from the competition early. Tracy Magness and Tarco Van Ter Moude went next in the order and were eliminated after two refusals.

The tides soon turned when Harrie Smolders and Exquis Oliver Q jumped fault free and within the time allowed, assuring the crowd of a jump off. Todd Minikus and Olinda, owned by Houlihan Lawrence, added their names to the good list as well, and Ken Berkley also came in clean with Carlos-Boy, owned by Krista Weisman. Eliza Shuford and Larentino followed in their footsteps with a clear go, and Laura Kraut and Miss Independent also jumped without penalty. Beezie Madden and Abigail Wexner’s Desilvio, Michael Whitaker and Insultech Portofino, and Lauren Hough with Casadora also qualified for the tie breaker.

Callen Solem was the first to return for the short course. She took a shot; however, Allison ticked an unfortunate rail at 10A. Solem and Quiet Winter Farm and BJ Maghan’s Allison clocked in at 34.22 seconds with four faults on the score board. Harrie Smolders entered the arena next. He and Exquis Oliver Q, owned by Axel Verlooy/Team Exquis, blazed across the ground, making tight turns and galloping across the Verizon Center Arena. A rapid turn after an oxer and a long, powerful gallop to the last fence left spectators in disbelief as the pair crossed the finish line in a smoking time of 30.55 seconds.

Todd Minikus and Olinda picked up their pace in the jump-off and lowered the height of two fences as they tried to beat Smolders’ time. Minikus came away with a final score of eight faults and 31.73 seconds. Ken Berkley and Carlos-Boy also accumulated eight faults and tripped the timers in 33.36 seconds, which would hold up for eighth place. Eliza Shuford tried her hand over the short course and, when her horse gave a huge effort over an oxer and pulled a rail, she lost her stirrups over the second obstacle. As the crowd gasped and cheered, Shuford galloped on and finished the jump-off without her irons. Larentino broke the beam in 33.97 seconds with just four faults.

Laura Kraut revisited the ring to take a chance at the lead. Miss Independent came away with eight faults after she pulled fences 10A and 5, and the pair stopped the clock in 31.77 seconds. Beezie Madden and Desilvio went for the win, but an unfortunate rail came down. Their time of 33.50 seconds ranked them temporarily in second with the fastest four fault score.

Michael Whitaker and Insultech Portofino added eight faults to their final score as they returned home in 33.91 seconds, and Lauren Hough and Casadora, who were the last to go in the order, took a conservative approach. The duo jumped neatly around the course, clearing the fences easily. They edged Madden into third and earned second place in the victory gallop with their clear time of 36.62 seconds. Smolders’ pace setter proved to be unbeatable, and the flying Dutchman took home the President’s Cup Trophy and a purse of $30,000.

"Since I was second to go in and had fast riders behind me, I really needed to put the pressure on them," commented Smolders after his win. "So, I think I did the right thing. I didn’t know until the last horse went that my time would be the fastest," he concluded.

"Normally I’m not one to ride for second," admitted Hough. "But, before I went into the ring, I thought I should look at the bigger picture, which is going to the World Cup Finals in Las Vegas. In order to beat Harrie, I would’ve had to take every risk possible. With no other riders clear, I really felt that the seventeen points were a wiser decision today, which should put me in the lead for the World Cup Standings. I think it’s been a good show," she noted. "The atmosphere and the crowd make it really nice to jump here, the prize money is good, the logistics are difficult, but we were all happy to be here."

Madden added, "I didn’t think I had a big chance of being faster than Harrie. My horse is very scopey and has a long, slow stride, but I did want to put enough pressure on Lauren so that she would have to go a little to beat me if I went clear." She continued, "Desilvio’s easy, so I don’t need to work him a lot, which is one of the reasons I brought him here. He excels usually when a course is really big because he’s so scopey. He’s been a great horse."

In the Junior Jumper Senator’s Cup, held under a Table II.2(a) Time First Jump Off format, six competitors qualified for the tie breaker. Heather Dobbs and Corlett were the first to return for the shortened course and jumped double clear in 25.412 seconds. Her sister, Hillary Dobbs, and VDL Lotus Excel entered the arena next and pulled two rails, clocking in at 25.933 seconds. Sloane Coles accumulated four faults with Louisiana in 25.590 seconds, and Lexy Reed and Ludwig came home with a clear round. Reed’s time of 26.280 seconds would leave Dobbs in the lead. Hillary Dobbs had another chance to take over the top spot with her second mount, Quincy B; however, their slower final time of 28.284 seconds would hold up for third. Maggie McAlary and Pedro, who won two classes this past week, finished with four faults and a time of 34.928 seconds.

"I really didn’t think I had a chance at winning," said Heather Dobbs after her presentation. "I never won anything this big, and I’ve had a really tough time this fall. My horse felt really good all week, so I was glad that I could finally pull it together for her and for Missy [Clark]."

"I felt sure that there were some fast riders coming behind me," she said. "I thought there was no way I was going to hang onto the lead, but I was happy because it was probably the best jump-off I’ve ever ridden, especially on that horse. It was finally nice to have a moment," she smiled.

The Junior Jumper Champion was Pedro, ridden by Maggie McAlary and owned by Beaver Brook Ponies. The pair won the first two classes of the division and finished fifth in today’s class.

In the $20,000 Open Jumper Hit n’ Hurry, competitors were allowed a fixed time of 45 seconds to jump over fences with assigned point values. When the fixed time was reached, the horn sounded, and competitors had to jump the next obstacle to stop the clock. Margie Engle and Hidden Creek’s Oscar acquired the greatest number of points, 20, in the fastest time of 51.09 seconds. Second place went to Insultech Quidame Des Heyettes and Michael Whitaker, who also earned 20 points. Engle went after Whitaker in the order, and they thrilled the crowd by finishing just one-hundredth of a point faster. Whitaker tripped the timers in 51.10 seconds. Up Chiqui and Kent Farrington captured third after accumulated 19 points in 50.28 seconds.

Results of Class 212 - $100,000 President’s Cup

T/A: 76.00 T/A: 40.00

1 54 EXQUIS OLIVER Q HARRY SMOLDERS NED 0.00 69.83 0.00 30.55 $30000

AXEL VERLOOY/TEAM EXQUIS

2 42 CASADORA LAUREN HOUGH USA 0.00 73.18 0.00 36.62 $22000

LAURA MATEO

3 4 DESILVIO BEEZIE MADDEN USA 0.00 71.18 4.00 33.50 $13000

ABIGAIL WEXNER

4 2 LARENTINO ELIZA SHUFORD USA 0.00 71.74 4.00 33.97 $8000

LARENTINO GROUP

5 20 ALLISON CALLAN SOLEM USA 0.00 75.36 4.00 34.22 $6000

QUIET WINTER/MAGHAN

6 74 OLINDA TODD MINIKUS USA 0.00 73.59 8.00 31.73 $5000

HOULIHAN LAWRENCE

7 24 MISS INDEPENDENT LAURA KRAUT USA 0.00 72.43 8.00 31.77 $4000

MISS INDEPENDENT GROUP

8 51 CARLOS-BOY KEN BERKLEY USA 0.00 75.07 8.00 33.36 $3000

KRISTA & ALEXA WIESMAN

9 65 INSULTECH PORTOFINO MICHAEL WHITAKER GBR 0.00 73.14 8.00 33.91 $3000

MICHAEL WHITAKER

10 16 COCU MOLLY ASHE USA 4.00 67.62 $2000

JANE CLARK

11 71 WALDI AARON VALE USA 4.00 69.15 $2000

MILLSTREAM INC

12 58 CALISKAN CANDICE KING USA 4.00 71.02 $2000

LOUISBURG FARM

Results of Class - $10,000 Junior Jumper Senators Cup

T/A: 63.00 T/A: 37.00

1 845 CORLETT HEATHER DOBBS 0.00 57.542 0.00 25.412

HEATHER DOBBS

2 836 LUDWIG LEXY REED 0.00 57.501 0.00 26.280

LEXY REED

3 846 QUINCY B HILLARY DOBBS 0.00 59.532 0.00 28.284

HILLARY DOBBS

4 505 LOUISIANA SLOAN COLES 0.00 60.180 4.00 25.590

JULIE COLES

5 758 PEDRO MAGGIE MCALARY 0.00 57.202 4.00 34.928

BEAVER BROOK PONIES

6 847 VDL LOTUS EXCEL HILLARY DOBBS 0.00 58.967 8.00 25.933

HILLARY DOBBS

7 298 FELIX DES NOUES JULIE WELLES 4.00 51.717

MISSY CLARK/NORTH RUN

8 188 JUBULENT HAYLIE JAYNE 4.00 56.960

ALEX JAYNE

9 508 MON GAMIN BRIANNE GOUTAL 4.00 57.194

CLOVERLEAF FARM

10 615 BLACK OPAL SHELBI SICLARI 4.00 57.332

SHELBI SICLARI

11 493 LA MOVIDA JESSICA SPRINGSTEEN 4.00 58.202

STONE HILL FARM

12 844 COBRETTI HEATHER DOBBS 4.00 61.587

HEATHER DOBBS

Results of Class 215 - $20,000 Hit & Hurry

T/A: 45.00

1 33 HC OSCAR MARGIE ENGLE USA 20 51.09

HIDDEN CREEK FARM

2 66 INSULTECH QUIDAME DES HEY MICHAEL WHITAKER GBR 20 51.14

MICHAEL WHITAKER

3 63 UP CHIQUI KENT FARRINGTON USA 19 50.28

BASS/MCNERNEY/BOONE

4 72 LAGATO AARON VALE USA 19 50.31

FAIRWAY FARM

T5 76 LENNOX LEWIS 2 LESLIE HOWARD USA 19 100.00

LESLIE HOWARD

T5 5 PLAY ON BEEZIE MADDEN USA 19 100.00

ALLAN SHORE

7 46 MARENGO NORMAN DELLO JOIO USA 18 46.63

ENRIQUE GARCIA

8 61 OPTIMUM POZITANO MCLAIN WARD USA 18 47.38

MCLAIN WARD INC

9 44 URITHMIC BRIANNE GOUTAL USA 18 47.43

CLOVERLEAF FARM

10 50 CINCINNATI KID SCHUYLER RILEY USA 18 49.06

SOUTH BEACH STABLE

11 27 FLUBBER COCOY LISA SILVERMAN USA 18 49.19

LISA SILVERMAN

12 22 COCO CABANA CANDICE KING USA 18 49.44

LOUISBURG FARM

 

Photo Credit: Harrie Smolders and Exquis Oliver Q in $100,000 President’s Cup Grand Prix. Photo © 2006 Diana DeRosa. Photograph may be used only in relation to this PMG press release.