Mark Bluman and Marilyn Nab $100,000 FEI Grand Prix at Split Rock Sarasota CSI2*

Mark Bluman (COL) and Marilyn Photo ©Winslow Photography

Myakka City, Fla – Jan. 29, 2022­– The $100,000 1.45m FEI Grand Prix, part of the first leg of the 2022 Split Rock Jumping Tour (SRJT), hosted at TerraNova Equestrian Center, treated spectators to electrifying show jumping with a nail-biting finish.

Olaf Petersen Jr. (GER) designed the 16-effort track. Out of 42 horse and rider combinations, 16 were clear and within the time allowed to progress to the short course. First to go in the jump-off round, the winners of Thursday’s $37,000 1.45m Welcome CSI2* Jessica Mendoza (GBR) and Windsor Farms’ Dublin (Cobra 18 x Calido 1) set a lightning-fast time to beat of 34.2 sec. The pair held on to the lead for 12 rounds until Alberto Michan (ISR) and Firewall, a black KWPN gelding (Lexicon x Bailey) owned by Eduardo Leon, put in a fault-free finish in 34.19. Last to go, Colombia’s Mark Bluman and Marilyn, a bay mare of unknown breeding owned by Over the Top Stables LLC, pulled out all the stops and edged out Michan to win the class.

An exuberant Bluman fist-pumped his way down the rail celebrating his win. Though he’s come close in the past, it was Bluman’s first international grand prix win.

“[Going last] I had time to watch everyone go, and the only thing to do was go as fast as I could and turn tight, and hope that the rails stay in place and they did for me,” he said. “I have been close multiple times and was really hoping to come here and get that under my belt,” he said. “Marilyn is not very experienced, but we have big hopes for her for this year.”

About the TerraNova Equestrian Center, Bluman said, “I loved it. I’m impressed. We’re very lucky that people are making an effort to get more beautiful venues and more options for riders to go to different places.”

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