Wellington, FL – Oct. 10, 2021 – The ESP October show wrapped up on Sunday with the $25,000 Score At The Top Grand Prix, which featured horse-and-rider pairs from five different nations. Representing Colombia, Juan Manual Gallego and Adalberto Audi Scappino, owned by Eduardo Sanchez Navarro, rode straight to the top as the best-performing pair over two rounds of competition designed by Jasen Shelley (USA).
“When we walked the first course, we thought it looked nice and just difficult enough for this class,” commented Gallego. “I think we were all expecting more clear rounds. Perhaps the time-allowed was a little tight at the beginning, but some riders had unlucky rails. For me, it was my lucky day to have only three in the jump-off because even with a rail down I was able to get the win.”
The first round of riding proved to be tricky for much of the field, as only three partnerships completed the course without any faults to advance to the jump-off. Returning first, Gallego and Adalberto Audi Scappino turned in a quick time of 42.92 seconds over the grass Derby Field, but dropped a rail to incur four faults and open the door for the next challengers to take over the lead. Next up, Liza Finsness (USA) and her own Shiver tackled the course, but lowered two fences to accrue eight faults. The final entry, owner-rider Tanimari Macari (MEX) and Feminka put forth a valiant effort, but also dropped a single rail to incur four faults and stopped the timers at 43.02 seconds, just milliseconds off of the leading time, to confirm Gallego and Adalberto Audi Scappino as the victors. Just barely behind the leaders, Macari and Feminka earned the runner-up title, followed by Finsness and Shiver as the final jump-off entry in third position.
“This horse is nine years old. He is very competitive and honest, and he always wants to be in the ribbons,” noted Gallego of Adalberto Audi Scappino. “He is a super cool horse to do these types of classes at the 1.40m to 1.45m level. We will fight for the next grand prix here. During the Winter Equestrian Festival, I think he will be a good horse to do the CSI2* classes.”
For the full results of the $25,000 Score At The Top Grand Prix, click HERE.
Competition kicked off Friday morning with the Bainbridge Companies 1.40m Open Stake on the Derby Field. Macari and Feminka took home the grand prize as the fastest of the four double-clear contenders with a jump-off time of 36.44 seconds. Kim Farlinger (CAN) piloted Conreu, owned by Sher-Al-Farm Inc., to a second-place finish with a clear jump-off time of 37.08 seconds. Posting another clear jump-off was Gallego, who stopped the clock at 37.47 seconds with Juan Pablo Betancourt’s Chaverto to round out the top three.
Macari found herself in the winner’s circle once again in Saturday’s $5,000 Omega Alpha 1.35m Classic. Piloting her own entry, Starfly, Macari and her mount produced double-clear rounds with a jump-off time of 44.87 seconds to secure the win. In second place was Juan Carlos Garcia (ITA), who cleared the short-course in 47.71 seconds with Habab W, owned by Neil Jones Equestrian, Inc. Carlo Graziani (USA) and his own Erato M were the third and final pair in the jump-off to produce double-clear rounds, stopping the jump-off timers at 48.99 seconds to round out the top three.
Sunday morning featured the final class in the Low Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper division, presented by Equiline. The Low Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic, also presented by Equiline, resulted in a competitive jump-off, with the top three finishers all crossing the finish line within half of a second. With the quickest time of four double-clear pairs, Elisa Uribe of Fort Lauderdale, FL, and her own Havana De La Lande claimed the victory in 35.24 seconds. Owner-rider Paula Portocarrero of Loxahatchee, FL, and Queretaro 2 earned second place in 35.68 seconds, followed by Allyson Blais of Boynton Beach, FL, and her own Escudo in third place with a final time of 35.76 seconds. Thanks to the bonus points earned in the Classic, Uribe and Havana De La Lande were also crowned the overall division champions.