Lexington, KY - August 1, 2008 - Today was an exciting day at the Kentucky Summer Horse Show. The ASG Software Solutions USHJA International Hunter Derby made its debut in the Walnut Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park. Spectators filled the sidelines to watch this exciting new class. They were not disappointed. Aaron Vale, of Ocala, FL, rode Second City to an exciting win, beating Jennifer Waxman, of Chargin Falls, OH, and Falcon by just one point.
The Derby is a two round event. Riders compete in the first round and receive scores from two pairs of judges. The top twelve riders are then called back for a handy round. Again they receive two scores, but they can earn up to 10 bonus points for extra handiness. The International Hunter Derbies are meant to be reminiscent of the hunt field and include exciting jump options.
Richard Jeffery designed today's courses. The first round included multiple natural jumps with brush and logs. There were four fences where riders could chose between jumping 3'6'' and 4', including a five-panel snake jump. The second round was even more difficult. Jump number three was a trot jump followed by a tight rollback to an option fence. Riders were also required to jump from a two-stride option onto the bank, and then make another tight rollback to fence eight. Fence eight was a roll-top at the top of a steeper bank. Riders then galloped down the bank to a three-panel option, followed by the five-panel option again in the other direction. Finally riders galloped to a large brush oxer.
After the first round, Jennifer Waxman and Falcon were in the lead with a score of 182. Aaron Vale and Second City followed in a close second with a score of 177. Jennifer Waxman took the third position as well with her second mount, Zoom, and a score of 172. Robert Kraut rode Nemo, owned by Meghan Moran of Malvern, PA, to the fourth position with a score of 150.
Jennifer Waxman and Zoom were the first of the four to enter the ring. Waxman's round began very steadily. Unfortunately Zoom had trouble at fence eight, the second bank jump. He stopped but then made a valiant effort to get over the fence. Waxman tried to finish the course but the judges decided she did not jump fence eight and she received a non-score, moving her to twelfth place. Robert Kraut and Nemo were next. Kraut was very handy and took difficult turns with ease. His picture-perfect round scored 187, the highest of round two and would put him in third place overall.
Aaron Vale and Second City were second to last to compete. He knew that he would have to be handy and take all the 4' options if he wanted to beat Waxman. His choices paid off with a score of 178, moving him to the lead. Jennifer Waxman entered the ring last with Falcon. Their round was good, but a rough trot jump and the decision not to take more difficult routes would leave the pair with a score of 172. The combined score was 354, just one point away from Vale's sore of 355.
"Coming into the first round I didn't want to be too bold or anything. I just wanted to be a little conservative and hopefully make the second round," Vale revealed. "I just got in a super rhythm. I never had to touch the reins in the first round and the horse jumped super. I really had fun riding the first round, it was really just a smooth trip."
Vale knew the second round would require him to be more aggressive. "I knew Jennifer would be pretty tough in the second round. I knew Falcon was a good horse and she was going to take some chances and jump the bigger fences, so I knew I had to do those things as well," he explained.
Vale has been competing at the Kentucky Horse Shows for years. "It's a great place to show. You also have great footing, permanent stabling, great course designers, and great service from the staff. It's a top class horse show," said Vale.
Today was a very important day for the USHJA Hunter Derbies. Not only did they host a very successful competition, but also they were able to showcase the new class to representatives for the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. The USHJA has submitted a request to do a demonstration of the class during the Games. The representatives were very excited to watch the new class.
The Kentucky Summer Horse Show will continue tomorrow with Children's Hunters and Junior Hunters championships being awarded. The show will conclude on Sunday with the Amateur-Owner championship presentations. The Kentucky Summer Classic will get underway next week at the Kentucky Horse Park, beginning Wednesday, August 6, and coming to a close Sunday, August 10, 2008.
For more information on the Kentucky Summer Horse Shows, please go to http://www.kentuckyhorseshows.com
CLASS: ASG/USHJA INTERNATIONAL HTR DERBY
1 852 SECOND CITY AARON VALE AARON VALE 178.000 N/A 355.000
2 724 FALCON JENNIFER WAXMAN JENNIFER WAXMAN 182.000 N/A 354.000
3 910 NEMO MEGHAN MORAN WEC LLC & MEGHAN MORAN 150.000 N/A 337.000
4 1073 CORLAGO HILLARY SIMPSON ATLANTA EQUESTRIAN CENTER 136.000 N/A 292.000
5 444 CROQUET KAREN LACKINGER KAREN LACKINGER 136.001 N/A 288.001
6 523 PAMELA ALICIA GAMBOA STRANSKY'S MISSION FARM 146.000 N/A 259.000
7 426 SKYLAR LORETTA MAYER KRISTIN MONTEMARANO 121.000 N/A 257.000
8 838 ACCORDIANO GABRIELA MERSHAD MIDDLETON STABLES 125.000 N/A 250.000
9 1039 GLENN CH CAPPY LOOKABILL CAPPY LOOKABILL 128.000 N/A 248.000
10 286 LORD LORENZO ALYSSA MANSFIELD ALYSSA MANSFIELD 158.000 N/A 236.000
11 11 ISIS BARRI PLATT DON STEWART 129.000 N/A 212.000
12 719 ZOOM JENNIFER WAXMAN JENNIFER WAXMAN 172.000 N/A 172.000
Photo Credit: Aaron Vale and Second City take the handy route for the win in the ASG Software Solutions USHJA International Hunter Derby at the Kentucky Summer Horse Show. Photo By: Rebecca Walton This photo may be used free of charge only in relation to this press release.
---------------------- It's easy! Just copy code below and paste into your webpage --------------------
<a href="http://www.equestrianmag.com/article/aaron-vale-city-asg-software-ushja-hunter-08-08.html">Aaron Vale and Second City Claim a Narrow Victory in the ASG Software Solutions USHJA International Hunter Derby</a> ~ EquestrianMag.com