Saugerties’ own Heather Caristo-Williams wins the $10,000 Brook Ledge Open Welcome

(C) ESI Photography
Heather Caristo-Williams and Cosmopolitan 30 winning the $10,000 Brook Ledge Open Welcome. 


Saugerties, NY (June 3, 2016): HITS-on-the-Hudson Week II kicked off with the $10,000 Brook Ledge Open Welcome. Thirty horses and riders tested the course designed by Oscar Soberon, but only one team would take home the blue-ribbon title.

It was Saugerties, New York, equestrian Heather Caristo-Williams who stole the show on her own turf aboard Cosmopolitan 30, owned by Mr. & Mrs. Ralph Caristo.

“I’m overjoyed with this win, we are always happy to back at HITS,” said Caristo-Williams. “Of course, I’m always thankful to have the support of my family, friends and sponsors; when I win, it’s really a win for everyone.”

Nine advanced to the immediate jump-off to compete for the top spot. First to go clear in the jump-off was Debbie McCarthy Connor of Patterson, New York, and EF Eline, owned by Edition Farm. With a few top five victories under her belt in Week I, they confidently took to the jump-off course, clocking in fault-free in 43.398. They would eventually earn fifth for their efforts.

Two trips later, Anne Kursinski of Frenchtown, New Jersey, would shave a full three seconds off Connor’s time with a clear jump-off round in 40.530 aboard Caspar’s Lasino, owned by Market Street, Inc. The round would ultimately earn them the third-place prize.

The lead did not stay in the hands of any one rider long, until the victors, Caristo-Williams and Cosmopolitan 30, arrived to contest the shortened course.

“The course was nice. It had a couple of roll-back turns and a tricky long approach to a vertical—it was a good challenge at parts, and you had to slow down to make your turns,” said Caristo-Williams. “My plan for the jump-off was not to go too fast and focus on navigating the ground efficiently.”

They powered through the jump-off, opting for the tight approach in a mid-course roll-back turn. The crowd cheered as they crossed the timers in a speedy 38.581, where the lead would remain.
“He’s a lovely horse to ride,” said Caristo-Williams of Cosmopolitan 30. “He’s handy, and very fast without me having to push him, which helps keep me level-headed in the course.”

Matthew Williams, of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, followed to try his hand at the course. After a clear first round, he piloted Cuchica, owned by Wyndmont, Inc. through the jump-off. The seconds were winding down as they stopped the clock at 39.684 for second-place.

Following Williams, Southampton, New York, equestrian Jonathan Corrigan and Beechfields Astra Zeneca, owned by Colm McGuckian, put down a valiant ride. They would pass the timers without any rails, but their time of 43.683 was just a hair short of the top five, settling them in sixth.

Debbie McCarthy Connor re-entered the ring as the last trip with a jump-off. This time, she piloted Zim, owned by Connor & Ebetino Jumpers, LLC. They stopped the clock at 41.971, a full two seconds ahead of Connor’s previous time on EF Eline four fourth-place, sealing two spots in the top five.

Place Horse Owner Rider Prize Rd. 1 Faults JO Faults JO Time
1 Cosmopolitan 30 Mr & Mrs Ralph Caristo Heather Caristo-Williams 2,800 0 0 38.581
2 Cuchica Wyndmont, Inc. Matthew Williams $1,800 0 0 39.684
3 Caspar’s Lasino Market Street, Inc. Anne Kursinski $1,250 0 0 40.530
4 Zim Connor & Ebetino Jumpers, LLC Debbie McCarthy Connor $900 0 0 41.971
5 EF Eline Edition Farm Debbie McCarthy Connor $800 0 0 43.398
6 Beechfields Astra Zeneca Colm McGuckian Jonathan Corrigan $700 0 0 43.683
7 Temptation Tranqullity Farm Michael Desiderio $600 0 4 37.443
8 KM Whatever RV Bayaert Farm Inc. Mattias Tromp $400 0 4 37.881
9 Twan Stephex Stables / Missy Clark Cormac Hanley $375 0 4 39.476
10 Aminka Tranquillity Farm Michael Desiderio $375 4
11 Conte Couleur Ronald Francoeur Mark Jungherr 4
12 Captain Caruso Cormac Hanley Cormac Hanley 4

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(C) ESI Photography 
Heather Caristo-Williams and Cosmopolitan 30 winning the $10,000 Brook Ledge Open Welcome. 


About HITS, Inc.
HITS, Inc. produces high-quality, international-level hunter/jumper horse shows. Based in upstate New York in the Village of Saugerties, HITS has been producing shows since 1982 and is now a nationwide company with world-class circuits in California, Florida, Arizona, New York, and Virginia.

While hosting the richest weekend in show jumping at HITS-on-the-Hudson, HITS also formed the Triple Crown of Show Jumping. This includes the AIG $1 Million Grand Prix, presented by MortgageCall, in Thermal, California, the Great American $1 Million Grand Prix in Ocala, Florida and Saugerties $1 Million Grand Prix, presented by Wells Fargo, in Saugerties, New York.

For more information and a complete schedule of classes and events, visit Stay connected with HITS! Join us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram. Media should contact the HITS Media Team at 845.246.8833 or e-mail