The Developing Jumper Series Final presented by Spy Coast Farm, drew an impressive array of young horses to the George H. Morris Arena at TIEC last weekend. In the 5-Year Old Jumper Division, David O’Brien (IRL) took a sweep of first and second place awards, piloting the champion, Maldonado SCF, owned by Spy Coast Farm LLC, as well as reserve, Maui SCF, also owned by Spy Coast Farm, LLC., after completing the short track in 36.222 seconds. Third place was awarded to Brittni Raflowitz (USA), and ESI Show Jumpers Inc.’s, Mevis De Muse, after a final jump-off round of 37.468 seconds.
O’Brien and the top-class 5-year old stopped jump-off timers in 35.943 seconds. He commented, “Maldonado was second in the 5-Year Old Finals in Kentucky, and he’s a very easy-going guy. He’s probably my most consistent horse I’ve had out this year. We just want to produce him and bring him on up the levels. He should be able to jump the 1.50m, no doubt.”
|Lisa Lourie and David O’Brien with Maldonado SCF in their presentation ceremony.|
O’Brien also dominated the 6-Year Old Division, aboard Spy Coast Farm LLC’s Lazuli II SCF, ending the series on a jump-off time of 34.515 seconds.
Of the talented 6-year old, O’Brien stated, “Lazuli’s half-sister was second in the 5-Year Old Division. This mare has been brought along as well, and these horses are produced to be the ones at the top of the sport.”
|David O’Brien and Lazuli II SCF|
O’Brien rides for Spy Coast Farm, and knows the importance of the Developing Jumper Series in regard to the future of quality horses in America. “In order to produce these horses in America, we need these classes. To get into the main ring in Tryon, it’s one of the best in the world. You want to be here, you want to jump these jumps. On top of that, it’s great to have an establishment like Spy Coast Farm to back this, and to support it. Lisa Lourie is not only breeding young quality horses, but she is also creating these opportunities for these horses to learn and gain important experience.”
Second place position was awarded to Doug Payne and Quintessence, owned by Jane Dudinsky, ending the jump-off in 36.234 seconds. Shawn Casady rode Cecotto De La Ogi, owned by Robert Gomez, to third, with a jump-off time of 41.967 seconds and four faults.
|Lisa Lourie and Harold Chopping with Fantom.|
The 7-Year Old Division of the Developing Jumper Series Final saw a victory awarded to Harold Chopping (CAN) and Fantom, owned by Hunter Farms, after a speedy jump-off round of 37.238 seconds. Ireland’s Aidan Killeen boasted second place with his own Snotty, completing course in 38.204 seconds. Juan Manuel Gallego (COL) rode Kayack to third place after a short course time of 41.086 seconds.
“Fantom is just a very talented horse,” exclaimed Chopping. “He is definitely something for the future. He was a little green when he was started earlier in the year. He can really jump a big jump and is dead brave. I get along with him so well. I really love him.”
Chopping noted that the strategy with a series like the Developing Jumper Series is always consistency. “You obviously want to come out with clear rounds on all three days, so you just try to do the best you can. We started in one ring and then spent the final two days in the George Morris Arena, and I think that it really helps that this horse is very brave. He went right in, and it didn’t take him any extra classes to get comfortable with the big setting.”
He concluded, “To have these young horses jump against their peers is certainly productive for everybody. These horses won’t get lost as just another face in the crowd out there, as they aren’t competing against a variety of ages and experience levels. I think it’s just an overall great concept.”