From Atop the Spiral Staircase at Fox Lea Farm:
Week 5 in review:
Every once in a while there are some riders that should be highlighted and this week I believe Jenna Friedman riding out of Oakridge Farms LLC in Ocala is that rider. Ms. Friedman is just about to crossover from adult amateur to pro in the near future, and I think she is certainly a rising star.
Ms. Friedman had her first Grand Prix ever, right here at Fox Lea back in 2012. In fact, she was riding the same super horse she won the 1.25 Jumper Prix this week, Zidoctro. She was also riding a few youngsters this week, Alectra which she also placed 2nd in the 1.25M Jumper Prix and on Glorix Van De Mispelaere she placed 4th in the 1.25M Prix as well. She is also bringing up another younger horse, Canaan who is making a start in the 6 year olds and placed second this week over a very challenging course.
Like many riders it is Jenna’s goal to ride in the FEI ring and compete for Team USA and obtain that ever cherished first pink jacket. Along her journey she points to a number of people that she would like to give thanks to. Those people include trainers that have made her the best rider she can be today: Debbie Stephens, Emil Spadone, Derek Peterson and Candice King.
As she has grown up around horses, she knows you can’t do it all alone. There is a team effort to get anywhere and she points to her dad Lance Friedman and her boyfriend & manager Tyler Lopez as her biggest supporters and cheering section.
There is another rider that I feel needs to be recognized this week as well. Many of us started off our riding careers in the ponies, and this rider is no different. Caroline Alexander riding Northwinds Times Square owned by ABA Hunter Ponies and trained by our friend Kris Cheyne won a big class. There were 10 in the Marshal and Sterling Child Pony Classic. At Fox Lea, this is typically a really tough group of riders and ponies to compete against. A big CONGRATS to Caroline and Times Square!!!!
1st Zidoctro/Jenna Friedman C/C 29.652
2nd Alectra/Jordan Friedman C/C 29.836
3rd Guidance/Kaitlyn Butler C/C 30.027
4th Glorix Van De Mispelaere/Jenna Friedman C/C 32.470
5th Utopie De La Vigne/Lilly Hahn C/C 32.612
6th Garda/Laura Gaither C/C 34.704
7th Seasoned/Richard Reinhart
8th MTM Icarly/Dorothy Douglas
9th Melleficent/Clayton Russell
10th Cara Z/Sherry Hill
11th Philadelphia 54/Christina Webb
12th Scarlet/Arianna Tucker
This was the first time this Tour that we’ve seen Kirk Webby in the irons. Mr. Webby was riding Brando Du Rouet to a double clear victory over a huge class of seasoned riders and horses. In the end, eight of the twenty starters were in the chase for the winner’s portion with Dorothy Douglas and Stephan Foran right on his heels.
The Welcome was officially recorded as:
$7,500 Welcome II.2.b
1st Brando Du Rouet/Kirk Webby C/C 34.307
2nd MTM Icarly/Dorothy Douglas C/C 35.875
3rd Cooper 152/Stephen Foran C/C 36.161
4th MTM Questro/Dorothy Douglas C/C 36.298
5th Any/Thomas John Russell C/C 37.145
6th Bill Clinton/Juri Ito C/C 42.493
7th FVF Sailor Man/Maryann Charles
8th Guidance/Kaitlyn Butler
9th Seasoned/Richard Reinhart
10th Garda/Laura Gaither
Every once in a while an announcer really gets to geek out on someone that is going to be in a class they have the true privilege of announcing. One of my absolute top 3 favorite riders in the United States to announce is none other than the winner of this weeks Grand Prix, Candice King! When people ask me why first I tell them that Candice is one of the easiest riders to talk to. There are no airs and graces with her, she is down to earth and “normal”. Then I tell them it’s not because of what she has done…she has almost done it all…but where she started.
Candice King is one of those riders that you simply have to admire. Sure she has multiple FEI titles and awards. Been on several Nations Cup teams. Has been ranked top US Rider. She’s won the Queen Elizabeth II Cup at Hickstead…it goes on and on. What you know only if you’ve been to her website is that it wasn’t always an easy road. It started off with a little black quarter horse named Penny Lane. She was encouraged by her mom Marlo and her father & fellow horse person Al Schlom. Then it was horses like Chocolate Mousse, Wula, Kodiac, Mister Spoon, John E.M., Skare Glen’s Davos, Skara Glen’s Rebozo and one of my favorite horses to ever watch show…Kismet.
When the Grand Prix started we would see twenty-two have an attempt at the first round and four would be advanced to the jump off. Of those four only two would go double clear. Calisto 26 & Candice King and Gomez Van De Withoeve & Kyle Dewar.
Candice was the 11th in the original order and had to go for it right out of the gate. She put up a time that might have been bested…but she was fast and more importantly double clear. Then we saw FVF Sailor Man with Maryann Charles and Any with Thomas John Russell riding and both had 4 faults in the jump off. It came down to the 18th in the order of go in their jump off attempt with Kyle Dewar & Gomez. I was fortunate to get to know Kyle and his family during Camp this past year and I know he is very competitive. I won’t say he was holding back because that is not Kyle…but I will say he was making sure he went clean and go clean he did. He was within the time allowed, he was clear and that was the goal that he accomplished on the night & was awarded 2nd for his efforts.
$25,000 Grand Prix class was recorded as:
1st Calisto 26/Candice King C/C 32.701
2nd Gomez Van De Withoeve/Kyle Dewar C/C 35.475
3rd FVF Sailor Man/Maryann Charles C/4 32.769
4th Any/Thomas John Russell C/4 33.692
5th Shining De Reve/Thomas John Russell C/1 time 77.083
6th Brando Du Rouet/Kirk Webby
7th Compis/Stephen Foran
8th Ca Va Bien/Agatha D’Ambria
9th Mimmo T.Z./Brian Murphy
10th Cracky Z/Christi Israel
11th Clever Van De Helle/Kyle Dewar
12th Cassius 74/Stephan Foran
The Venice Equestrian Tour Hunter Challenge was a wonderful class. It was the $9,999 special held in the main ring on Saturday afternoon. Twenty horses would go in the first round and the top twelve would return for the Handy round. The best of them this week was MTM Exceptional ridden by Dorothy Douglas for Abigail Davenport of Devon PA. He is an 8-year-old Holsteiner by Casall Ask. This is a superb horse and rider team that handily won the day.
The class was officially recorded as:
$9,999 VET Hunter Challenge
1st MTM Exceptional/Dorothy Douglas
2nd Speak Your Mind/Ashleen Lee
3rd MTM Bazinga/Katlynn Butler
4th MTM One Time/Dorothy Douglas
5th Ego/Chelsea Director
6th Arbor Hill/Ashleen Lee
7th Snap Dragon/Emily Terry Peterson
8th Gioia/Vick Russell
9th El Rapido/Emily Yaghdjian
10th Bel Ami/Ashleen Lee
11th Tall Paul/Vick Russell
12th Hudson/Vick Russell
The Veredus Mini Mini Prix winner was Melanie Markham riding her own Diesel. We’ve seen this combination for years at Fox Lea and Melanie is a very fine amateur rider who has done well during this Tour.
Mini Mini Prix
1st Diesel/Melanie Markham C/C 32.808
2nd Tiger Lily/Emily Rapchack C/C 40.426
3rd O’Danny Boy/Laura Shinn C/C 43.527
4th All Jazzed Up/Allysa Bateman C/C 45.461
5th Korkade/Saylor Ellis C/C 47.598
6th Bonnaroo/Alice Joy C/dnr
As we are rolling into week VI of the Tour, it’s clear to see the obvious growth of the riders and the horses that have been here from the beginning of the Tour, especially those jumping in the Baby Jumpers growing and learning so much and so fast. Some will ask, ‘how can you watch shows week after week and not get bored or tired of it all?’ For me, It comes down to passion, loving what I do and watching the trainers and riders that learn so much in a setting that is this beautiful and inviting…I say how can you not?
Out from behind the mic one more time.