Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Highs and Lows of Southern Pines/Heading Back to PA

Cold Harbor: Open Intermediate, Winner of the 2011 Page Schaumberger Trophy for Best Intermediate Horse (lowest score)
Owners: COL(ret)Manny and Dana Diemer; presenter is Claire Reid.

The Southern Pines Horse Trials II was a huge event this year, drawing in a large number of spectators, in part thanks to the promotion by PRO and also partly because it is such an awesome event. The venue is sensational, the cross country is tough and technical and the show jumping is always a tricky test at Southern Pines.

I had a group of up and coming training horses to compete, the star of which was Anne Hennesey's Summer Breeze W, who had been battling a bruised foot leading up the event. She came sound just in time and smoked a competitive group, finishing on her dressage score of 27.7. I was glad to bring victory to Anne, who is a longtime supporter of mine.

L-R: Dana Diemer, Boyd Martin and Anne Hennessey

Steady Eddie, Partyboy, Double Dare and Cagney Herself also did very well in their last event before heading home to PA, gaining valuable experience. All five of my training horses this weekend oozed with four star qualities and look very promising for me in the next couple years.

My lonesome prelim horse was Colin Davidson and Lucy Boynton's Crackerjack who had a nice, cruisey, slow relaxed ride around the prelim. I chose to go easy on him as I went flat out cross country at his last outing at Red Hills and figured he deserved a nice, settling round this weekend. It looks like he is aiming towards the Bromont three day event in June if he is not sold before then.

In the intermediate I rode Dana Diemer's Cold Harbor and the Otis syndicate's Otis Barbotiere. Cold Harbor gave me the ride of the weekend in all three phases, showing his home crowd fans how to do it and winning the Open Intermediate. He looks like he is heading towards the Jersey Fresh three day event, which I believe he will be competitive at, then he will head back to his usual rider, Holly Hudspeth, to continue his career. Otis once again confirmed my beliefs in him this weekend: this is a super quality horse that walked around the testing cross country with ease. Next up for him will be the CIC 3*** at The Fork.

Last but not least were my two advanced horses heading for Rolex: Last Monarch and Remington XXV. Both these horses had disappointing results on paper which was largely due to some poor riding by yours truly. I gave Remington a terrible approach to an accuracy fence which he had no chance of lining up, for his first cross country penalty of his career. Then, I butchered poor little Stewie at a galloping fence where I moved up to a long distance that just wasn't there. Stewie and I came crashing down which saw us retire from the course. Both Stewie and I checked out with no injuries by the medical team at Southern Pines. I felt terrible for Stewie's mother and usual rider, Holly Hudspeth, who was very understanding and compassionate in a situation that would have sent me through the roof. Expect perfect results at both these boys' starts at The Fork in two weeks.


Results from the weekend are as follows:


Remington XXV, owned by Ron and Densey Juvonen, 13th place

Open Intermediate

Cold Harbor, owned by COL (ret) Manny and Dana Diemer, FIRST PLACE!

Otis Barbotiere, owned by the Otis Barbotiere Syndicate, LLC, 4th place

Open Preliminary

Crackerjack, owned by Colin Davidson, 19th place

Open Training A

Partyboy, owned by Fernanda Kellogg, 10th

Steady Eddie, George and Gretchen Wintersteen, 12th Place

Open Training B

Double Dare, owned by Priscilla Hoblitzell, 9th place

Cagney Herself, owned by Bonnie Stedt, 19th Place

Open Training C

Summer Breeze W, owned by Anne Hennessey, FIRST PLACE (27.7!)


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