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Lauren Hough & Naomi 152 Win $50,000 Braman Motorcars Grand Prix

WELLINGTON, Fla., Jan. 25--Sydney 2000 Olympian Lauren Hough on her new mount, Naomi 152, Sunday posted her first grand prix win of the 2009 FTI Winter Equestrian Festival in the $50,000 Braman Motorcars CSI-2* at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center.

Of the 55 starting riders, 13 combinations moved on to the jump off where only four combinations went clear.

Hough, of Wellington, and Naomi 152, owned by Quail Run Partners, completed the short course in 39 secs. flat, only 0.39 secs. faster than 2004 and 2008 Olympic gold medalist Beezie Madden of Cazenovia, N.Y. aboard Danny Boy, owned by Abigail Wexner. Rounding out the top three was Charlie Jayne of Elgin, Ill. and Urbanus.

"The first course didn't suit a big horse, but in the jump off I did five strides instead of six down the last line and I think that was the difference," Hough said of her winning ride.

This is only the third time Hough has competed the mare and said she believes she "is a really special horse."

"But learning a big horse like her has been the biggest challenge so far."

Madden chose to do six strides down the last line because "it was only his first Sunday Grand Prix and he is nine years old," she said of Danny Boy, whom she has brought up the ranks since acquiring him as a five-year-old.

Danny Boy was the best young horse at Aachen, Germany last year and "may have to end up stepping into the number one spot," because her 2004 and 2008 Olympic mount, Authentic, also owned by Abigail Wexner, and the Iron Spring Farm's stallion, Judgment, have been left home to rest for the winter.

Pl Horse Rider Nat Faults Time Faults Time

1. Naomi 152 Lauren Hough USA 0 83.82 0 39.00

2. Danny Boy Beezie Madden USA 0 85.05 0 39.39

3. Urbanus Charlie Jayne USA 0 87.28 0 41.38

4. Mila Georgina Bloomberg USA 0 86.70 0 45.19

5. Murka's Pom d'Ami Peter Charles GBR 0 83.38 4 38.62

6. Chapeau Z Debbie Stephens USA 0 86.72 4 39.83

7. Ranville Frankie Chesler0Ortiz CAN 0 86.46 4 41.38

8. Costa Rica Amy Millar CAN 0 86.52 4 42.23

9. Skara Glen's Davos Candice King USA 0 87.25 4 46.08

10. Comtesse du Lys Marilyn Little-Meredith USA 0 84.87 8 37.64

Photo: Lauren Hough rode Naomi 152 to victory Sunday in the $50,000 Braman Motorcars Grand Prix at the FTI Winter Equestrian Festival at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center. 2009 Ken Braddick-HorseSport USA


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