Lexington, KY - May 13, 2009 - Kim Prince and Superieur flashed through the finish line in a time of 63.392 seconds to win today's $5,000 Open Jumper 1.40m class at the Kentucky Summer Classic. The pair beat out five other horse and rider combinations that completed clear rounds during today's timed first round class, held in the new outdoor stadium at the Kentucky Horse Park. Prince and Superieur made sharp turns and kept a fast pace to give them the leading time and the day's win.
Leopoldo Palacios of Venezuela was the course designer for today's class, and he set an exciting course that tested abilities of each entry. The course featured two double combinations, the first an oxer to vertical combination, and the second a vertical to oxer combination, as well as a liverpool fence and a wall jump. The most common fence for riders to have a rail down was the liverpool, which followed the first double combination.
"I thought it was a good course, it was fun to ride," commented Prince. "I thought it was very efficient; it wasn't a course where you ran all over the ring. You just did these little tight turns and jumped the jumps that were in the middle of the ring; it was kind of like an indoor course."
Charlie Jayne was the first to successfully complete Palacios' course without fault aboard Athena, owned by Alex Jayne of Elgin, IL. The pair stopped the clock in a time of 72.379, which would hold up for a fifth place finish.
Prince and Superieur, owned by Kirsten Pollin of Washington, DC, were next in the ring, and Prince was confident that her mount could handle the sharp turns and set a fast pace. The duo soared over each fence with ease, not touching a single rail, and glided around each turn. Prince and Superieur raced through the finish line in 63.392 seconds, taking over the lead and winning the class.
Jayne made an attempt to beat Prince's time with his second mount, Urbanus, also owned by Alex Jayne, whom he also completed a fault-free round aboard. The pair tripped the timers in 72.379 seconds, which would be fast enough to pass the time he set on Athena, but not fast enough to pass Prince's time. Jayne and Urbanus finished in third place during today's class.
James Benedetto and Comtesse Du Lys, owned by Equinmity of Stonybrook, NY, were the next horse and rider combination to leave all the jumps standing at the end of the course, but their time of 73.400 would not be fast enough to catch the leaders and they earned the sixth place honors. Amanda Knowles followed Benedetto into the ring aboard McLovin, owned by Bayshore Farm of Toronto, ON, and they completed a clear jumping effort. The pair stopped the clock in 70.581 seconds to finish in the fourth place position.
The final rider to compete in today's class was Brock Clermont aboard Lasse, owned by Equistar, LLC of Bradbury, CA. They would come the closest to catching Prince's lead when they also had a fault-free round. They cut each turn and didn't touch any rails, but their final time of 64.301 would fall just behind Prince and secure the second place honors.
"I'm very excited," smiled Prince. "This horse has just started showing again because his rider is pregnant so he was kind of on hold. We did the 1.30m last week and he was great so we decided to try the 1.40m today. It was raining this morning but the sun came out for me and everything was excellent!"
Superieur is a 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood nicknamed Super, and Prince hopes that he will continue and compete in a few smaller grand prix classes this summer. Later this week he will compete again in the $5,000 Open Jumper 1.40m class, although Prince is considering entering him in the $5,000 Open Jumper 1.45m.
Following Prince's win Henri Kovacs had his second victory in the $5,000 Open Jumper 1.45m class aboard Cermit, owned by Caroline Lloyd of East Hampton, NY. The pair was one of three horse and rider combinations to complete a clear first round and advance to the jump-off.
First to compete over the short course after their successful first round was Alejandro Karolyi of Monterey, N.L., and Mississippi L.S. The pair had an unfortunate rail at the first vertical and finished in a time of 38.510 to place second in the class.
Kovacs and Cermit were next to compete in the jump-off but they also accumulated four faults when they had a rail at fence nine, the liverpool. The duo crossed the finish line in 35.716, which was the fastest of the day to win the class. Beezie Madden tried to catch Kovac's time aboard Exclsuive, owned by Elizabeth Bushe Burke and John Madden Sales of Cazenova, NY, but they had a rail at the fourth fence in the jump-off and received third place honors.
The Kentucky Spring Classic will continue tomorrow with the $30,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic, being held in the main outdoor stadium at 4:30 p.m. This will be the second event in the Hagyard Challenge Series, sponsored by the Hagyard Equine Medical Institute. The series concludes in September at the Kentucky National Indoor Horse Show, and a $50,000 Leading Rider Bonus will be presented after the $50,000 CSI-W Lexington Grand Prix to the rider who accumulates the most points throughout the series. Top riders vying for this year's award include Kent Farrington, Debbie Stephens, and Margie Engle, and tomorrow's event will bring them one step closer to the main prize.
For more information on the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows please go to http://www.kentuckyhorseshows.com
To learn more about the Hagyard Equine Medical Institute, please go to http://www.hagyard.com
Photo Credit: Kim Prince and Superieur were the fastest pair to flash through the finish line during the $5,000 Open Jumper 1.40m class at the Kentucky Spring Classic. Photo By: Rebecca Walton Photograph may be used only in relation to this PMG press release.
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<a href="http://www.equestrianmag.com/article/kim-prince-kentucky-spring-classic-05-09.html">Kim Prince and Superieur Take Top Prize at Kentucky Spring Classic</a> ~ EquestrianMag.com