By Emily Kerr
THERMAL, Calif. – January 23, 2021 – Twenty-five pairs challenged Olaf Petersen Jr.’s (GER) course Saturday afternoon at Desert Circuit Week I, but Ali Ramsay (CAN) and Bonita VH Keizershof Z (Bustique x Benthe) soared to the top in the $40,000 Sun Air Jets Grand Prix. The pair were the quickest in the jump-off, stopping the timers at 37.457 seconds. Jamie Taylor (USA) and JT Equine LLC’s Quatar (Quidam de Revel x Amy Surprise) crossed the timers at 39.090 seconds to earn second. Finishing the top three, Kyle King (USA) rode Spruce Meadows LTD’s Coffee To Go (Cinquecento 7 x De Colady) to a jump-off time of 39.024 seconds.
The ten-year-old Zangershiede mare, owned by Ramsay Equestrian Inc., and Ramsay have been paired together for four years now. “I have had her since she was six and this is our first grand prix win,” revealed Ramsay. “She jumped her first Friday grand prix here last year and that was the biggest thing she had ever done. Now we have just been building on that so this was really exciting and I am really happy with her.”
Bonita, as she is known at the barn, is on the smaller side, so Ramsay walked the course with wide eyes seeing the big verticals and wide oxers: “I was definitely holding my breath a little bit. When I went in with her, I changed my tactic and I just wanted to stay out of the way. I know she is a super jumper and she is a little bit opinionated,” Ramsay shared about her strategy going into the first course. “Today I just went in, let it be her way, and it worked out. She kind of taught me something today.”
Ramsay’s 2021 plans include competing on Team Desert Horse Park as part of the inaugural season of Major League Show Jumping. “I’m very excited about that. The plan is to follow as many of those shows as I can and bring my top three grand prix horses. Hopefully I’ll bring my client’s horses as well and go to those shows. It’s going to be really awesome. We are lucky to have that.”
About the Desert International Horse Park
With nearly 1.3 million square feet of competition and riding space, the Desert International Horse Park is one of the largest equestrian facilities in North America. Offering multiple weeks of world-class equestrian competition from October through March, the facility is a destination location for thousands of equestrians, their horses, family and friends for several months annually. Competitors from all over the world travel to Thermal, CA to not only compete but to enjoy everything the desert has to offer.