Lexington, KY – July 28, 2021 – The action returned to the infamous Rolex Stadium Wednesday afternoon for the first day of the Kentucky Summer Horse Show. Without a cloud in the sky, eager athletes and their partners took to the ring in hopes of snagging the lion’s share of prize money offered in the $5,000 1.40m Open Jumper. After a hard-fought battle, it was ultimately Ireland’s Cormac Hanley who prevailed over the stiff competition aboard Elegance de Pessel, riding home with the first win of the series.
The riders were not only up against each other but also up against Anderson Lima’s (BRA) 13-effort track. With a time allowed of 80 seconds, riders made haste as they galloped for home in an effort to trip the timers fault-free in hopes of advancing to the jump-off. Six pairs advanced to the jump-off with three double-clear efforts topping the leaderboard.
Cormac Hanley entered the Rolex Ring aboard Skyler Fields’ 12-year-old KWPN gelding Elegance de Pessel midway through the class, mastering the first track and quickly advancing to the tiebreaker. Elegance de Pessel showcased the extent of his skills, taking the tightest of turns and setting the quickest pace to cross the finish line in a blazing 37.022 seconds with all the rails intact, leaving the rest of the field to chase them.
The youngest competitor in the field, 15-year-old Carlee McCutcheon, was aboard her partner of three years MTM Unexpected, a 10-year-old Warmblood gelding. Under the guidance of her grandmother, Colleen McQuay the young rider showed skill beyond her years, attempting to catch Hanley’s round. They left all the rails in place but were just shy of Hanley’s time, galloping through the timers in 38.994 seconds to secure second place.
Danielle Torano and Feramoon G, an 11-year-old warmblood mare, also attempted to score the victory after a clear first round. The pair was clear over the track but not quite fast enough, taking home the third-place honors with a time of 39.998 seconds.
This is Hanely’s first year competing at the Kentucky Summer Horse Shows and showcasing his mounts in the Rolex Stadium. Elegance de Pessel normally competes with his owner in the High Amateur-Owner Jumpers, but after an excellent first round, Hanley opted to go for the win, using the world-class facility and footing to his advantage to capture the victory, making the show an instant favorite for the Irish native.
Jumper competition ramps up Thursday evening with the $25,000 Kentucky Summer Classic at 6:30 p.m. in the Rolex Stadium. The excitement continues Saturday with the $50,000 Rood & Riddle Grand Prix.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Cormac Hanley – $5,000 1.40m Open Jumper Winner
On Elegance de Pessel:
“Elegance, she’s a really really good mare. She’s naturally quick. She’s owned by Skyler Fields who will show her later on in the week in the High Amateur division. Skyler let me go in and do a professional ride and she jumped so great in the first round and she’s naturally quick, so I decided to have a little go in the jump-off and it worked out in my favor. I’m really happy with her.”
On Anderson Lima’s Course:
“I thought it was a good course. I have to say, I thought it was pretty straight forward which was nice for everybody for it being the first day of the show. Just to get in the ring and get some nice rounds under everyone’s belts. I thought he did a great job and obviously, I have nothing to complain about when I win.”
On the Kentucky Horse Show Series:
“This year is the first year that I’ve shown at the Kentucky Horse Park. I did the National [Horse Show] back in November for a couple of years, but this is the first time that I’m here for the summer in the Rolex Stadium and I really enjoy it. It’s a fantastic ring to ride in and I liked it a lot.”
On their upcoming plans:
“This week I’m just showing in some of the smaller classes – the 1.30m and 1.40m. I have nothing for the grand prix this week. Next week, I hopefully will have a horse to do the two grand prixs.”
$5,000 1.40m Open Jumper
Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults | R1 Time / R2 Faults | R2 Time
1. Elegance De Pessel / Cormac Hanley / Syler Fields / 0 | 76.619 / 0 | 37.022
2. MTM Unexpected / Carlee McCutcheon / Carlee McCutcheon / 0 | 75.541 / 0 | 38.994
3. Feramoon G / Danielle Torano / Danielle Torano / 0 | 74.255 / 0 | 39.998
4. Laithinus / Nora Gray / Carl Hanley Sporthorses GmbH / 0 | 76.491 / 4 | 40.052
5. C2C Candorra R / Will Baker / Coast to Coast Equestrian / 0 | 72.996 / 4 | 41.005
6. La Jolie Van’t Eigenlo / Celso Ariani / Ricardo Romero / 0 | 75.787 / 4 | 44.232
7. Caiman Des Sequoias / Nicole Loochtan / Nicole Loochtan / 4 | 73.979
8. Milton / James Brennan / Crooks Show Jumping, LLC / 4 | 77.059
9. Chewbacca / Jimmy Torano / Mario Deslauriers / 4 | 77.273
10. RMF Retro / Daisy Farish / Rushy Marsh Farm LLC / 6 | 81.745