By Sabrina Schmidt and Jennifer Wood for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
Four-time Olympic medalist McLain Ward (USA) notched his first win of the 2022 WEF circuit on Friday in the $6,000 Bainbridge Companies 1.40m Speed Challenge on Bonnie M Z over 44 other entries. The pair sped to victory in 60.780 seconds over the Eric Hasbrouck-designed course. Finishing just off the pace in second place were Laura Chapot (USA) and Out of Ireland, owned by Chapot and The Edge, who stopped the timers in 61.304 seconds. Catherine Tyree (USA) and Newton van het Krekelhof were third in 65.324 seconds.
Ward and Bonnie M Z showed on Wednesday and improved to a winning performance in Friday’s 1.40m class. Ward got the ride on Bonnie M Z two weeks ago through the Holtgers family of Gut Einhaus LLC. Ward has started a new partnership with them and will train Ansgar Holtgers Jr. Gut Einhaus entered into ownership of the horse in 2018, and he has been ridden by Olympic champions Eric Lamaze of Canada and Jeroen Dubbeldam (NED).
“They asked me to ride the horse and see what I thought he could be,” said Ward of the 13-year-old Zangersheide gelding by Bentley Van De Heffinck x Berlin. “He’s done up to three-star grand prix. The Holtgers have owned him for a few years, and now we’re getting started with him.”
Ward described, “He’s a very good jumper. He has great technique and feeling. We are figuring out different parts about him, but today was a real step in the right direction.”
Commenting about starting out another WEF winter, Ward said, “I always enjoy it. It’s nice to get started after little break. It’s organized chaos, but we enjoy that excitement. I look forward to getting going here.”
WEF 2022 continues on Saturday, January 8, with the $25,000 CaptiveOne Advisors Classic in the afternoon, while the highlight of the week and start of the “Saturday Night Lights” series, the $75,000 Battle of the Sexes, presented by Wellington Regional Medical Center, kicks off at 7 p.m. Equitation riders take to Ring 7 to contest the THIS National Children’s Medal 14 & Under.
Final Results: $6,000 Bainbridge Companies 1.40m Speed Challenge
1 BONNIE M Z: 2009 Zangersheide gelding by Bentley Van De Heffinck x Berlin
MCLAIN WARD (USA), Gut Einhaus LLC: 0/60.78
2 OUT OF IRELAND: 2006 Anglo European mare by Lougherne Connaught x Amiro M
LAURA CHAPOT (USA), Laura Chapot & The Edge: 0/61.304
3 NEWTON VAN HET KREKELHOF: 2013 Belgian Warmblood gelding by Diamant De Semilly x Contact Vd Heffinck
CATHERINE TYREE (USA), Catherine Tyree LLC: 0/65.324
4 FRESCA LA QUADRA: 2010 KWPN mare by Carambole x BMC Nassau
ROBERTO TERAN TAFUR (COL), Roberto Teran Tafur: 0/66.361
5 BERDIEN: 2011 Zangersheide mare by Bustique x Querlybet Hero
MOLLY ASHE CAWLEY (USA), Louisburg Farm: 0/66.465
6 FAIRYTALE 86: 2010 KWPN mare by Verdi TN x Cantos
VANESSA HOOD (USA), Take Two LLC: 0/67.013
7 ZILOUET MYSTIC ROSE: 2013 Brazilian Sport Horse mare by Balou Du Rouet x Chin Chin
JUAN BOLANOS (ESA), Mariella Godoy: 0/68.527
8 LORD UP: 2011 Holsteiner gelding by Lordanos x Come On
AUDREY SCHULZE (USA), Riverbrook Sport Horses LLC: 0/69.553
9 LA BELLE SCF: 2011 Belgian Warmblood mare by Diktator Van De Boslandhoeve x Baldini
SUMMER HILL (USA), Summer Hill & Andrea Simpson: 0/70.889
10 CHATOU 7: 2009 Oldenburg gelding by Chacco-Blue x Toulon
NICOLETTE HIRT (USA), Iron Horse Equestrian: 0/71.482
11 CAPPUCCINO: 2012 Westphalian gelding by Comme Il Faut 5 x Sir Shutterfly
MOLLY ASHE CAWLEY (USA), Louisburg Farm: 0/71.661
12 TANAEL DES BONNES: 2007 Selle Francais gelding by Watch me Van’t Zorgvliet x Don Pierre
BRIANNE GOUTAL-MARTEAU (USA), Gerald J. Ford: 0/72.105