By Catie Staszak for CSI Greenwich
Sydney Shulman (ISR) admitted, she’s had her eye on the 11-year-old mare A Toi de Prim for quite some time.
When she and the mare’s owner Andrew Bourns (IRL) connected this summer in Traverse City, she finally got her chance to take the reins. In just their second international competition, they took the win in the $57,000 CSI2* Double H Farm Grand Prix 1.45m at CSI Greenwich.
Alex Matz (USA) and Ibbo van T’Keldertje finished second, with Peter Lone (USA) and Cedric 84 third.
“She’s super fast. This is only my horse show with her, Shulman said. “[Bourns] caved when I got her, because I’ve been asking about her for so long. I’ve been a fan of hers, and she’s my dream type of horse. She really wants to work with you, not against you.”
The top 10 combinations returned for Alan Wade’s (IRL) shortened course in the competition’s winning round format, which may have been the winning edge for Shulman. The 26-year-old won three such competitions this summer with her top mount, Villamoura and found that a quick first round gave her a strategic edge in the second, in which competitors return in reverse order of standing.
“I don’t think I’ve jumped a winning round class until this summer in Michigan, but I got quite familiar with it. Villamoura won three of them, so I think I really got the system down at this point!” Shulman exclaimed. “I really like strategy, so I maybe go a little bit faster than most in the first round, just to give myself an extra advantage, which I think really paid off.”
When Jordan Coyle (IRL) and Picador, a combination known for their quickness, pulled a rail ahead of Shulman to ultimately finished seventh, she knew she didn’t have to take as many risks to secure a victory.
“I think my plan would have definitely changed if I went earlier in the jump-off, and I would have risked having one down,” Shulman said. “I thought I played it a little safe, but she’s a naturally fast horse.”
It was truly a hometown win for Shulman, who’s family’s Back Country Farm is based just across the street from Greenwich Polo Club. In fact, both properties are owned by the Brant family.
“It’s a dream for me, and our farm, Back Country Farm is across the street. The owner of our farm actually owns the polo fields here. It means a lot to show here, let alone win here.” Shulman said. “The field is beautiful, Alan Wade’s courses are phenomenal, and it’s so fun. I have my whole family here, all the clients, all the kids, and I can’t ask for more.
“It brings hometown crowd to another level.”
$57,000 CSI2* Double H Farm Grand Prix 1.45m
Horse Name/ Rider Name/ Nationality / Owner / Faults / Time
1. A Toi de Prim / Sydney Shulman / ISR / Andrew Bourns / 0/0 37.26
2. Ibbo van T’Keldertje / Alex Matz / USA / Beechwood Stables / 0/0 37.73
3. Cedric 84 / Peter Leone / USA / Maarten Huygens / 0/0 37.26
4. Dsarie / Beat Mändli / SUI / Grand Road Partners / 0/0 38.44
5. Isabelle / Delaney Flynn / USA / Horse Orchard, LLC / 0/0 39.66
6. Cheilane de Blondel / Mark Bluman / COL / Mark Bluman / 0/4 35.66
7. Picador / Jordan Coyle / IRL / Elan Farm / 0/4 37.30
8. Cliff Z / Matthew Boddy / GBR / Gotham Enterprizes, LLC / 0/4 38.89
9. Arno vh Scheefkasteel Z / Jamie Walker / USA / Jamie Walker / 0/8 41.60
10. Exotik Sitte / Coco Fath / USA / Hillside Farm, LLC / 0/12 43.14