Edited Press Release
Wilmington’s Winter in the Midwest feature class action kicked off Thursday with the $10,000 WEC Wilmington Welcome Stake 1.35m. Spectators gathered to watch elite riders take on the holiday themed course designed by Bobby Murphy of Lexington, Kentucky. Ten competitors took to the Sanctuary Arena, all vying for the win. The afternoon’s course was elegantly decorated with plenty of festive holiday cheer. An extra-large bow, huge wrapped gifts, a glistening holiday tree and even a candy cane jump adorned the brightly colored fences.
Crowd favorites Kevin McCarthy of Lexington, Kentucky and his own Catch a Star HSS (Sheraton x Tolinda) were cheered to the WEC winner’s circle once again. The dynamic duo marched into the arena eager for a win, which they achieved with ease. McCarthy and the 11-year-old Swedish Warmblood mare were the only pair to jump double clear and ultimately took the win with a first round finish in 76.551 seconds, followed by a jump off of 41.697 seconds.
“We came back after a few unlucky runs at the last several shows. She deserved the win tonight because of how well she did and to make such a great comeback,” McCarthy said of his mount. “In-between shows, we went home and had a nice break. She enjoyed time out in the pasture for a few days and then we worked for a few days before returning here. I want to thank my girlfriend Keely for all of her help and encouragement. I am excited to have her back here on Saturday to help me with the prix.”
Second place in the final standings was Drew Arnold and Theresa Kraft’s Chaccomo 11 (Chacco-blue x Sacenta). Arnold and the 12-year-old Mecklenburger gelding jumped clear in the first round and finished in just 73.453 seconds. Upon returning for the jump-off, the pair pulled an unlucky rail, but finished the course strong in 42.505 seconds to take second place honors.
Sarah R. Meier and Thinks Like A Horse’s Gallup rounded out the classes top three. Meier and Gallup jumped a quick and clean first round in just 73.125 seconds. Immediately following their run, they gathered themselves and took on the short course which they completed in 42.778 seconds with one rail down and a four fault penalty, which landed them in third place.
$10,000 WEC Wilmington Welcome Prix Results:
- Catch a Star HSS, Kevin McCarthy 0 | 0 | 41.697
- Chaccomo 11, Drew Arnold 0 | 4 | 42.505
- Gallup, Sarah R. Meier 0 | 4 | 42.778
- Galway Bay Pandora, Alliy Moyer 4 | 73.562
- Matinee BSH, Shawn Butler 8 | 70.730
- Cadeautje, Izzy Beisel 8 | 75.557
- Vegas H, David Q. Beisel 8 | 77.240
- Clever, Rachel Schnurr 10 | 83.733
Photos courtesy of Winslow Photography