For Immediate Release
Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
Equitation competition began on Saturday morning with the Ariat National Adult Medal taking place in the South Ring. The class saw 27 riders and called back the top six for a test. Returning to the test in third place, Julia Gildea and Tristram 7 moved up two places to take home the blue ribbon.
Waltham, MA, resident Gildea has been paired with Holly Hill Farm’s Tristram 7 since the summer. The duo trains with Holly Hill Farm, who bred the 14-year-old Holsteiner/Oldenburg gelding by Ramsey.
Gildea piloted Tristram 7 to a first-round score of 84. “I thought my first round was good,” Gildea explained. “I was a little long to the second to last jump. I didn’t take a pause out of the corner, but it worked out. He will leave from anywhere you tell him to!”
Six riders, who earned a score of at least 81, returned for the test, which involved a bending line and trot fence. Gildea returned fourth in the order and executed a picture-perfect test to move up to the lead.
“I just wanted to be smooth and make sure that I got right up to pace since the first part was a bending line,” commented Gildea regarding her plan for the test. “I think my trot jump was really nice. I made him wait to the base because sometimes he likes to put in a canter stride before.”
Gildea plans to continue showing Tristram 7 in the equitation this circuit and possibly attend the Ariat National Adult Medal Finals this year. The rider is thrilled to start the 2021 show season on a high note.
“It feels really great,” said Gildea of winning a class so early in the season. “I haven’t done much showing at WEF, only a weekend here and there, so it’s really nice to start off strong.”
Tess Lenihan, of Chester, VT, rode Sophie Lenihan’s Wayfarer to a second-place finish in the class. The pair received a first round high score of 86. Third place honors went to Miela Gross, of Del Mar, CA, aboard Eleanor Cox’s Dark ‘N Stormy. Gross and her mount earned an 81 in the first round.
Sunday will be the final day of competition for the WEF Premiere Week with the $75,000 Bainbridge Grand Prix taking place in the International Arena and the Marshall & Sterling Adult Amateur Hunter Older (Section B) in the E.R. Mische Grand Hunter Ring.