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Eric Lamaze and Hickstead Charge to the Win in $50,000 Charlotte Welcome Stake, CSI

Kentucky's Catie Boone and Naleida Are First to Speed to Victory in $15,000 Junior/Amateur-Owner Speed Class

Charlotte, NC - April 11, 2008 - It was a very exciting opening class for the 2008 Charlotte Jumper Classic, which was held at the Time Warner Cable Arena in Uptown Charlotte. The show runs through Sunday, April 13, and hosts the $500,000 Grand Prix of Charlotte on Sunday at 3 p.m. Canada’s Eric Lamaze and Hickstead raced to tonight’s $50,000 Charlotte Welcome Stake, CSI victory over Pavarotti and Todd Minikus and Chris Kappler with VDL Oranta.

Tonight's class was the opening competition for the international jumpers. There were 40 entries in the class, and 10 of those were clear in the first round to advance to the jump-off. There 12 with just four faults in the first round, and there were two eliminations and two retirements on course.

The first to return for the jump-off was tonight's opening rider in the class, Chris Kappler of New Jersey on VDL Oranta. They started the jump-off in style with a quick, smooth round. They finished with no faults in a time of 34.71 seconds, which would hold the lead for quite a few rides and would eventually end up in third place.

Canada's Ian Millar and In Style were next in the ring. They were on their way to taking the lead, but with a fast gallop to the final oxer, they pulled a rail at the last jump. They finished with four faults in 31.67 seconds and fifth place.

Richard Spooner of California piloted Cristallo in the jump-off and had a good start, but a miscommunication at fence 6 caused a refusal for four faults. They circled and jumped fence 6 and had a rail down. They ended their course with eight jumping faults and 12 time faults for a total of 20 in 47.64 seconds.

Riding Marlo, Danielle Torano of Florida was the next to tackle the course. Their quick pace through the course had them going for the win, but that was dashed when a rail fell at jump 9. Their final score of four faults in 35.35 seconds would give them eighth place at the conclusion of the class.

Next in was the Grand Prix of Charlotte's inaugural winner Beezie Madden, certainly one of the favorites to win on her top mount Authentic. They were very fast from the first to second jump, but at the third jump, Authentic rubbed the top rail and it fell. They stopped the timers in a speedy time of 33.57 seconds, but the four faults left them in seventh place.

New York's Kate Levy and her mount Vent du Nord were next in. Their fast pace to the second jump on course left a pole on the ground for four faults. They finished in 36.02 seconds, just over the 36 second time allowed, which added one time fault onto their score. They finished in ninth place.

Erynn Ballard of Canada and her horse Robin van Roosendael were the next to challenge. The huge horse had no trouble with the jumps and kept them all up, but their slower time of 37.05 seconds caused two time faults, which gave them fourth place at the end of the class.

Next in was Eric Lamaze, a fellow Canadian, on his highly successful mount Hickstead. Lamaze made a very neat turn from the one stride at fence 7 in a right-hand rollback to fence 8. Hickstead looked perfectly on form, and as Lamaze made the turn back to the final oxer, he increased Hickstead's speed to a full gallop. They flew over the final jump and Hickstead cleared it with ease, stopping the timers in 33.32 seconds to take the lead.

California's William Simpson and Carlsson vom Dach were next in the ring. They had another fast time of 33.50 seconds, but a rail at fence 7a would cause four faults and give them sixth place.

The final rider in the ring was Todd Minikus of Florida on Pavarotti. He and the little chestnut bounded around the course and were just off the winning pace in 34.05 seconds with no faults, which put them into second place.

It was a great welcoming class for the top show jumpers in North America. Lamaze was very happy with his victory tonight, especially considering that he and Hickstead have not shown indoors for "a very long time." Lamaze originally planned to compete with a different horse, but since Hickstead did not end up showing at the American Invitational in Florida last week, he decided to bring his best horse to Charlotte.

"This wasn't part of his plan," Lamaze acknowledged. "I was going to use another horse, and he was going to wait until Europe (this summer). He looks to be on form for Sunday."

Lamaze said that it is always challenging to compete in a small, indoor ring after showing so long in large outdoor fields. "I rode here last year, and I know what to expect," he commented. "The fences come unbelievably quick."

He went on to say, "The event is great, and we love coming to Charlotte. You have great riders and great horses (here).The level of competition this year is very high."

The opening class of the night was the $15,000 Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper speed class. There were 30 in the class, and the winner was the very first rider on course. Catie Boone of Kentucky and her horse Naleida were very fast and clear in 47.46 seconds to take the win.

Tomorrow is the Kids and Family Day at the Charlotte Jumper Classic, and doors open at 12:00 noon. Competition continues tomorrow with the opening class at 1:30 p.m. The evening session will begin when doors re-open at 6 p.m. The Budweiser Clydesdales and Saddlebred horses will both give demonstrations in the afternoon and evening sessions.

For more information on the Charlotte Jumper Classic, please visit http://www.charlottejumperclassic.com.

Final Results: $50,000 Charlotte Welcome Stake, CSI

1. HICKSTEAD, ERIC LAMAZE: 0 faults/0 faults/33.32 seconds

TORREY PINES STABLE

2. PAVAROTTI, TODD MINIKUS: 0/0/34.05

TODD MINIKUS

3. VDL ORANTA, CHRIS KAPPLER: 0/0/34.71

M & K ORANTA LLC.

4. ROBIN VAN ROOSENDAEL, ERYNN BALLARD: 0/2/37.05

LOOKING BACK FARM

5. IN STYLE, IAN MILLAR: 0/4/31.67

SUSAN GRANGE

6. CARLSSON VOM DACH, WILL SIMPSON: 0/4/33.50

EL CAMPEON FARMS

7. AUTHENTIC, BEEZIE MADDEN: 0/4/33.57

ABIGAIL S. WEXNER

8. MARLO, DANIELLE TORANO: 0/4/35.35

JIMMY TORANO

9. VENT DU NORD, KATE LEVY: 0/5/36.02

KATE LEVY

10. CRISTALLO, RICHARD SPOONER: 0/20/47.64

SHOW JUMPING SYN.

11. PARADIGM, MARIO DESLAURIERS: 4/56.03

MARIO DESLAURIERS

12. QUICK STUDY, LAUREN HOUGH: 4/56.64

LAUREN HOUGH

Final Results: $15,000 Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper speed class

1. Naleida, Catie Boone: 0 faults/47.46 seconds

2. Marengo, Hillary Dobbs: 0/49.70

3. Subliem, Whitney Weeks: 0/51.65

4. La Martinee, Paige Johnson: 0/52.28

5. Ramila, Emily George: 0/52.87

6. Pilot, Amelia McArdle: 0/54.89

7. Zorro's Precision MBA, Callie Bass: 0/54.93

8. Rulanda, Carolyn Kelly: 4/48.19

9. Haddon House Carlson, Catherine Pasmore: 4/51.50

10. H&M Oberon, Ali Wolff: 4/53.26

11. Lady in Blue, Francis Tres Roig: 4/54.16

12. Blast Off, Carolyn Curcio: 4/55.14



Photo Credit: Hickstead and Eric Lamaze (CAN), winners of the $50,000 Charlotte Welcome Stake, CSI at the Charlotte Jumper Classic. Photo (C) 2008 Jennifer Wood/PMG. This photo may be used free of charge only in relation to this press release.

 

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