SAUGERTIES, NY (September 4, 2015): It was a beautiful Wednesday in Saugerties, New York for the first afternoon of FEI-ranked competition. Starting the week off on the right foot, Laura Chapot, of Neshanic Station, New Jersey, and Quointreau Un Prince, co-owned with McLain Ward, swept through the $34,000 FEI Saugerties Jumper Classic course for another HITS Saugerties Series blue ribbon under her belt.
Sixty-seven competitors took a turn at the 13 effort course designed by Steve Stephens of Palmetto, Florida. Chapot, who is no stranger to the spotlight at HITS Saugerties, having won the Week IV $50,000 Horze Grand Prix and $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix earlier this summer with her 11 year old mount, was up against some of the globe’s top athletes including McLain Ward, Beezie Madden and Margie Engle.
“It was a really nice course for everyone’s first time in the ring,” said Chapot. “There were a fair number of clears and it had a few tricky spots that caught up with people but I think it gave everyone a fair chance to get in the ring and get started for the week.”
Chapot was one of 22 returning for at the jump-off and her positioning in the middle of the order gave her the opportunity to watch, and learn, from her competition.
“It’s always nice to be able to see other people go and understand how fast they are going or if there are any places to make up extra time,” added Chapot. “My strategy was to go as fast as I felt comfortable with my horse and shave off the turns as best I could, but not to go too fast where he would be flat out.”
Thirteenth in the order, Chapot sped through the course leaving it intact in a time of 37.19 for the lead. The next few entries were not as lucky, many resulting in a rail for four faults. It wasn’t until Roberto Teran and Arkos Des Rolsers Z, owned by ARK Partners LLC, navigated his way through the course that it felt like the chase was on. Clocking in at 38.21, Teran found himself finishing just behind the leading lady.
Next to go clear and twenty-first in the order, Kristen Vanderveen aboard Bull Run’s Eternal, owned by Bull Run Jumpers One LLC, sailed to a time of 37.91 to bump Teran to third and to secure her spot in second place.
Chapot closed with, “I’m thrilled to come out the first day and have a win with Quointreau Un Prince. He’s fast and in good form. I’m really excited to be in the ring.”
Fourth place went to Emanuel Andrade and his own Boy IV, followed by Catherine Tyree and Free Style VD Polderhof, owned by Joseph and Mary Tyree.
FEI competition continues at HITS Saugerties on Friday, September 4 for the $34,000 HITS Jumper Classic, which is the only qualifying opportunity for Sunday’s CP $1 Million Grand Prix FEI CSI-5*, presented by Wells Fargo. Friday’s event will be webcast live beginning at 12 noon EST on HITS TV on www.HitsShows.com.
All eyes will be on the Grand Prix Stadium Sunday, September 6 for the highest ranked class in US show jumping this year – the Canadian Pacific $1 Million Grand Prix FEI CSI-5*, presented by Wells Fargo.
General Admission tickets and Day VIP passes are still available for Sunday’s main event. Additionally, HITS will webcast select classes through the week and weekend LIVE. For more information, please visit www.HitsShows.com.
C) ESI Photography
Laura Chapot and Quointreau Un Prince dominate day one of FEI competition at the HITS Championship winning the $34,000 Saugerties Jumper Classic.