Traverse City, MI – July 21, 2017 – Thirty-seven international show jumping athletes turned out at the Flintfields Horse Park on Friday afternoon to kick-off FEI competition in the Grand Prix Ring during Week Three of the Great Lakes Equestrian Festival (GLEF). In the end, Andrew Kocher of the United States flew to the win aboard Ciana, owned by Eagle Valley Partners LLC, in the $35,000 Welcome Stake CSI2*.
The course, designed by 2016 Rio Olympic course builder Guilherme Jorge of Brazil, saw 14 produce clear efforts over the first round and nine finish double-clear.
As third in the order for the jump-off, veteran partners Wilhelm Genn (GER) and Bugatti, owned by Eduardo Leon, set the pace to beat at 40.42 seconds.
Kocher saw a small window of opportunity to surpass Genn on the leaderboard and when he and the 10-year-old KWPN mare returned to the Grand Prix Ring nine trips later, he decided to go for it. His decision paid off as the pair stopped the timers in a speedy 39.30 seconds to take home the blue ribbon and winner’s wine, courtesy of Black Star Farms. Kocher also finished sixth with his second mount qualified for the jump-off, Prof De La Roque, owned by Postage Stamp Farm LLC.
Genn finished behind Kocher in second place, while Santiago Lambre (MEX) and his own Casino N rounded out the top three in 41.18 seconds.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Andrew Kocher – $35,000 Welcome Stake CSI2* winner
On his plan in the jump-off:
“I went first with Prof De La Roque and I was a little wide in a few spots and a little conservative. I thought [Ciana] was jumping really sharp, probably the sharpest one I had today, and I thought I’d give it a go. I was kind of planning on saving it for Sunday but I just can’t help it. I saw there was a door open and I was going to take a shot.”
“Karen Cobb bought her in Holland three years ago. Now she’s getting some experience. I couldn’t steer her when we tried her and she jumped over a standard out of a combination and we got in the car to leave and Karen was like, ‘Well, I bought you that horse.’ I was happy but I was also thinking, ‘How am I going to learn to ride her?’ She immediately won classes. She wins a lot but she’s also streaky. She hasn’t figured out lights under a stadium yet. She’ll get a little stressed about that, but in a setting like this, kind of wide open, she’s perfect. In 2* and 3* competitions, she’s very much a competitor. The 4* we’re still working on. The goal for the year is for her to start winning at the 3* and 4* level.”
$35,000 Welcome Stake CSI2*:
Place / Horse / Rider / Country / Owner / R1 Faults / R2 Faults / Time
1. Ciana / Andrew Kocher / USA / Eagle Valley Partners LLC / 0 / 0 / 39.30
2. Bugatti / Wilhelm Genn / GER / Eduardo Leon / 0 / 0 / 40.42
3. Casino N / Santiago Lambre / MEX / Santiago Lambre / 0 / 0 / 41.18
4. Javas Keltic Mist / Capt. Brian Cournane / IRL / Glenbeigh Farm LLC / 0 / 0 / 41.57
5. Zephire / Hayley Barnhill / USA / Barnhill Enterprises LLC / 0 / 0 / 42.77
6. Prof De La Roque / Andrew Kocher / USA / Postage Stamp Farm LLC / 0 / 0 / 44.54
7. Dali De Vy / Chelsea Moss / USA / Joe Scalia and Stormfront Stables / 0 / 0 / 44.92
8. Van Gogh / Theo Genn / USA / Wilhelm Genn / 0 / 0 / 46.04
9. Dino / Capt. Brian Cournane / IRL / Robert Stiller / 0 / 0 / 47.56
10. Centurion B / Lisa Goldman / USA / Mary Goldman / 0 / 4 / 40.44
11. Dingeman / Santiago Lambre / MEX / Santiago Lambre / 0 / 4 / 42.79
12. Copa Cabana / Ignacio Maurin / ARG / Stransky Mission Farm Inc. / 0 / 4 / 43.67