$25,000 Grand Prix for the Venice Equestrian Tour II 2017

From The Tower

From Atop the Spiral Staircase, a report from Fox Lea’s Grand Prix.

Tennessee Magna-Wave presented the Grand Prix last night.  A special thank you to Sherry Hyland-Phillips and Magna Wave for their continued support and sponsorship at Fox Lea.  A big Thank You also to Oakmore Equestrian for their sponsorship of the IDK Media Group’s live stream of the Grand Prix.

The Jewish Congregation of Venice made another appearance with samples of what is to be expected at the 23rd Annual Food Festival and Flea Market on February 19th, and you can be sure this Announcer will be stopping by as it will be held right down the street from Fox Lea.  Definitely something you should put on your calendar if you enjoy good food, festivals and flea markets.

We welcomed Erika Miller, a native of Sarasota, FL to sing the national anthem. Driven by her passion for patriotism, Erika has partnered with the Special Ops Warrior Foundation in the “National Anthem-Special Ops Project” in which a book “Rush Revere and the Star-Spangled Banner” is signed by participants of each event Erika sings the Star Spangled Banner to be auctioned with all proceeds benefiting the foundation to provide family counseling, grants and scholarships for the children of fallen Special Ops soldiers.

The Welcome Stake was indeed a prelude of what was to come last night.  Wow what an amazing evening we had here “Under the Stars”.  I think the only way this Grand Prix would have been more exciting for me was if I owned a horse that was going to be in it, but honestly even if that were the case, I know one of the home breeds would not have been in the top ribbons.  This course was designed by Keith Bollette to be won by a firecracker and that is exactly how it played out in our field of 21.  And that firecracker was Cady Klimas of Jumpers Landing LLC Hernando FL and her big hearted ride Celtic Lady M2S, the 9 year-young bay Dutch Warmblood mare by Condios.


The 3rd place winner this evening was also the second in the order to go. It was NaNa Mia and Savannah Nicole Unger who was the first of eight to advance to the jump off.  As we all know when you are the first to go clear, you are also the first to come back for the jump off.  Savannah and Mia would go double clear but also being first showed the other seven how the course would ride and where they could shave off some time and how.  During last summers Fox Lea Camp series, I was fortunate enough to get to know Savannah and she is a rising star for sure. Savannah and Mia would eventually end up 3rd when the class was recorded.  Savannah was also awarded this weeks Style Award by Boy-O-Boy Bridleworks.

Our second place ribbon last night was awarded to a newcomer here at Fox Lea but certainly no stranger to the Grand Prix World.  Theo Genn of Cincinnati OH comes from a family of equestrians.  His mother Patricia was a hunter rider and his father Wilhelm is a well-known Grand Prix rider and the pair just happened to meet at a horse show in Wellington.  Theo and his dad’s 8 year young horse named Van Gogh (by Valentino), were extremely accurate and deliberate in their ride and Van Gogh is certainly a powerful horse.  This combo also finished 7th this week in the Welcome among some tough competition.

Cady Klimas’s win by 2.013 seconds was not really a surprise to me as she has been dominating all the classes in the jumper ring she has entered during the Venice Equestrian Tour. Cady’s horse looked more motorcycle than equine.  The way the horse leans in the turns is a testament of how much they trust eachother.  We’ve all seen fast horses so you know what I’m talking about, but this pair really made a statement last night…and jump..oh my.  This little horse and rider combination is very exciting to watch.

The class was recorded officially as:

1st 768 Celtic Lady M2S/Cady Klimas for Jumpers Landing LLC Hernando FL C/C 39.533
2nd 857 Van Gogh/Theo Genn for Wilhelm Genn of Lebanon OH C/C 41.456
3rd 876 Nana Mia/Savannah Nicole Unger of New Hill NC C/C/42.786 Style Award
4th 570 Alonso Du Monselet/Rich Cheska Waukesha WI C/C 45.892
5th 927 Experience/Kris Killam for Tophorses LLC Leawood KS C/4 39.249
6th 859 Stitch/Carlos Aramburo (Red Banks MS) for Amy Yoder of Windermere FL
7th 827 Gomez Van De Withoeve/Kyle Dewar of Ocala FL
8th 654 Belle Clara DKS/Holly Shepherd forDejan Krunic of Houston TX
9th 926 Thunderstroc USA/Kris Killam for Sharon Brown of Lombard OH
10th 804 Cracky Z/Christi Israel Birmingham AL
11th 568 Utah Beach Un Prince/Rich Cheska of Waukesha WI
12th 659 SCS Luigi/Hanley Morrison of Madison MS

As always, I’d like to thank Ms. Victoria Demore Heil of Victoria Demore Photography for the fantastic pictures.


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