Edited Press Release
Thaisa Erwin of Middleburg, Virginia rode her own Jack to the winner’s circle in Saturday’s $25,000 Rockbridge Grand Prix at the Lexington Spring Premiere.
The course was designed by Paul Jewell of Lambertville, New Jersey. Of the fifteen horse and rider teams entered, only six would qualify for the jump-off round.
Erwin and Jack were third to go in the jump off order. “I know I would have to leave strides out if I was going to beat Marylisa [Leffler] and Zaza Z,” said Erwin. “Jack has an incredibly big step, and we did one less stride in the first couple of lines, one less to the combination and then one less to the last jump,” she said. “Everyone did a nine to the combination and I actually had to slow him down to get an eight.
“The course was fair and it suited Jack’s stride. This was actually the fastest I have gone with him in a jump off,” commented Erwin. “I’ve had him since he was a six-year-old and he’s now 8. We had a good winter season, and we went clear in the 2 star at WEF week 11. I feel like he’s really progressing and I’m excited about the future with him,” she added.
Erwin also earned a seventh place with Michael Smith’s Vanturo. The pair earned four jump faults in a time of 70.472 seconds, earning them the seventh-place ribbon as the fastest four fault round. “Vanturo is new for me, and it was actually my fault that he got the rail. The triple combination b to c was a bit tight and I set it up a bit early prepping for c, and we took the rail down at b. I’ve only had him for seven or eight weeks and it is just going to be a matter of us getting to know each other better,” she commented. “I’m very lucky and grateful that Michael and Wendy Smith bought Vanturo for me and are supporting my show jumping career.”
Zaza Z. owned by Rolling Acres and ridden by Marylisa Leffler of Brookville, Maryland, earned a second place finish with their clear jump off round in a time of 37.12 seconds. Grace Long of Middleburg, Virginia, in the irons of Vaziri Sport Horses, LLC’s Harold placed third with their fault free jump off round in a time of 37.455 seconds.
Fernando Cardenas of New Hill, North Carolina, placed fourth with his own Madeira SCF for a fault free jump off round in 38.821 seconds and fifth with B & C, LLC’s Cool Ray for their clear jump off round in a time of 40.398 seconds. Cardena also earned a ninth place with his own Quincy Car for their four fault first round in a time of 73.553 seconds.
Addison Reed of Mechanicsville, Virginia, winner of the $10,000 Nutrena Welcome Stake, placed sixth with Reed Training & Sales, LLC’s Goliath for their eight fault jump off round in a time of 36.566 seconds. She also earned a twelfth-place finish with Gail Thompson’s Doirin Clover Boy for their four fault first round in a time of 74.678 seconds.
Abby Grabowski of Alexandria, Virginia rode her own Quantum Trost 3 to an eighth-place finish for their four fault first round in a time of 73.148 seconds.
Ann De Michele of Haymarket, Virginia placed tenth with Cantatu, LLC’s Canmore 2 for their four fault first round in a time of 74.016 seconds. Tamara Morse of Bristow, Virginia aboard Stuart Morse’s Ravenna Adelheid Z earned an eleventh-place finish for their four fault first round in a time of 74.086 seconds.
“We’re so happy to be back at the Virginia Horse Center,” commented Erwin. “We love the eventing field and we really enjoyed the hills here. We did a lot of field work up there and that was our prep for the Grand Prix,” said Erwin.
“Allen Rheinheimer and his team do a great job running these shows and the staff is so nice. My little girl and her friends love the ‘cookie man’ and wait for his golf cart to show up so they can get their afternoon treats. By the third day, they started running after the ‘cookie man’,” she laughed. “The staff just couldn’t be nicer. We’ll be back next week and we’re looking forward to it.”
For more information, please visit horseshowsonline.com.
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