Conyers, GA.—November 16, 2008— “Nothing like a $50,000 day to cap off a week of heated competition!” exclaimed Bob Bell as the second of the Atlanta Fall Classics concluded. The morning began with the $25,000 Barry Lane Memorial Children’s- Adult Jumper Prix and ended with the $25,000 Atlanta Fall Grand Prix, both presented by the Classic Company.
54 horses with riders ranging in age from 13 to nearly 60 traveled across the US for the opportunity of winning the $25,000 prix and defeating Pierre Jolicoeur’s level 4 challenge. Clearing 15 jumping efforts in under 73 seconds would put them one stride closer to their goals, but only 16 would make that step. Among them the one woman-one horse act from Ft. Myers, FL Alissa Kinsey and 11 year-old Hanoverian mare Grisset. “This is a great facility!” said Kinsey of her first visit to the Georgia International Horse Park, “Although I was a little nervous, coming here not knowing anyone or where to go-just me and my horse. I left home Friday at 2AM and made it here just at the arrival deadline!” There was no sign of stress or weariness in the pair’s performance over the technical layout that included 2 double and a triple combination spanning across the arena’s vast circumference as they turned in a blazing clear time of 68.398 in round one. “It was long, kinda took a tour of the whole ring.” laughed Kinsey then added, “There was a lot of lengthen, shorten, lengthen, shorten to it, but I knew that my mare’s fine with that. She’s a tough cookie.”
Kinsey also shared that Thursday while prepping for the 9 ½ hour journey she discovered Grisset had gone into heat and while most riders heading into a big competition might say “Oh great something else to add tension.” This mare is not mareish, “She gets more competitive! She never lets me down.” Kinsey boasted. Something she would prove in the second round of 8 efforts and a time allowance of 44 seconds. “It was catching the first turn correct and after that it was just a run for the money.” Kinsey said of their scorching finish of 31.349 seconds. She felt her advantage came in the choice of not taking the inside turn on the initial turn from fence 2 to 3. “Most everyone took it which sort of chopped their strides up [6-7] and ate some time. I just stuck to the inside track and knew the curve I wanted to follow- I had to trust she’d get me there.” Making it in a mere 5 strides and providing extra gallop upon landing showed the trust paid off.
Having won the class Kinsey will now pay up on a promise made to her partner, “I told her if we won today we’d head home and she could have off until January’s circuit start.” Talk about an incentive to win, no doubt Grisset will be celebrating the whole ride home.
Completing the top five positions- 2nd place went to Cilia Ghaibi riding Imad Souilmi’s entry Vriendje with a clear time of 32.207; 3rd to owner-rider Elizabeth Patz and Atouch II in a clean 34.026; 4th to the Waters family owned Houston with Hayley Waters in the irons finishing clear in 34.213 and 5th went to owner-rider Audrey Trimble aboard Memphis with a clean 34.866 time.
And the excitement just kept building today! 2 o’clock hailed the start of the featured event, the $25,000 Atlanta Fall Grand Prix with an international field of 31 horse-rider teams. For this Jolicoeur created a masterpiece of technicality with boxed turns, huge spreads-averaging 4’9, and his signature hidden “bogey” obstacle set against an 84 second time limit. Kyle King of Ocala, FL applied the Boy Scout motto “always be prepared” for any surprise Jolicoeur had waiting. Paired a mere six months with Cimarron Farm’s 11 year-old mare Paola, King almost glided through the course. “It was a nice track. Technical in a few lines.” he said. They not only found the bogey , the triple combination of oxer-vertical-oxer at 8ABC, but were the first of only four to navigate cleanly through it and stopped the timer at 82.14. “This ring is so big they have to do things like this-several technical lines, but for a horse like her with a big stride it’s great. You can just flow along.” King said.
Facing off against three renown speedsters King knew going first in the jump off he’d have to throw some caution to the wind and lay down a fast run. “I was really fishing for the first three jumps, but then I just really tried to put the speed on.” he chuckled. And hit the gas pedal he did stopping the clock clean in 40.623 seconds well below the allotted 44. Despite their valiant efforts all three fell short and victory belonged to King. Marking Paola’s 3rd win out of 5 starts. “I don’t even want to say this without knocking on wood, but she’s never pulled a rail in a first round with me.” King began talking of his partner’s “confidence” issue, “I’ve been taking my time with her, building back confidence and getting to know her. She’s a man’s horse because she likes to be held a little bit, and she’s so careful and fast. I’m just proud to have her.” While the duo will return next week to compete in the double grand prix, King was anxious to hit the road to Mobile, AL for a couple of special days with 4 year-old [soon to be 5] daughter Callie- the real prize of his life.
Final results placed Bjorn Ikast in 2nd place with Braveheart in a clear 42.550. Hardin Towell piloting Boo Van Het Kastanjehof took 3rd place with a time of 41.820 and 4 faults. 4th place went to last week’s grand prix champion Derek Petersen aboard Jordan Coyne’s entry Lazaro with 8 faults in 38.253. And completing the top five was Hardin Towell with the Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Oare owned Copado in a final time of 80.291 and 4 faults.
Coming up in the finale week of the Fall Classics will be two $25,000 Grand Prix, a $10,000 Junior Amateur Owner Jumper Classic, a $10,000 Children-Adult Jumper Classic, and the awarding of the USEF Member Perks John Deere Gator to the 2008 season high point rider.
The Atlanta Fall Classics continue through November 23rd with showing taking place Wednesday through Sunday. Classes begin daily at 8am until approximately 4:30pm and the public is invited. Admission is free and each Sunday will host an exciting $25,000 Grand Prix jumper classic at 2pm. For more information or results on the Fall Classics visit http://www.classiccompany.com
or call the show office at 770-602-2510.
Flashpoint Media Services, based in Harrodsburg, KY, is a comprehensive public relations firm specializing in the equestrian sports. For additional information contact Robbi Meisel, 859-734 3713, firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo: Alissa Kinsey & Grisset Kyle King & Paola ©Flashpoint Photography
Photos may be used free of charge only in relation to this press release
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<a href="http://www.equestrianmag.com/article/alissa-kinsey-barry-lane-kyle-king-atlanta-11-08.html">Alissa Kinsey Wins $25k Barry Lane Memorial & Kyle King is Victorious in $25k Atlanta Fall Grand Prix</a> ~ EquestrianMag.com