By RandolphPR for Great Southwest Equestrian Center
Happy Comly and Derby CSH dashed to an impressive victory in the $10,000 Antarès Welcome Stake on Thursday, November 10, at the Great Southwest Autumn Classic in Katy, TX.
Comly and the 9-year-old Warmblood gelding, owned by Comly Sport Horses, were one of 20 entries to take on the first-round track designed by Danny Foster and one of nine combinations to advance to the jump-off.
When the pair set off on the short course, the time to beat had been set at 48.528 seconds by the first duo to jump-off, Hannah Colligan and her own Jazelly VDL. Comly and Derby CSH made besting that time look easy, blazing across the finish in a lightning-fast 36.360 seconds. That time would prove untouchable, with no one else coming within two and a half seconds of Comly’s pace. Second place with a time of 39.037 seconds went to Frank Owens and Just Jeremy ES, owned by DS Holdings LLC. Rounding out the top three was Daniel Bedoya, who rode Monica Hank’s Jumpstar Uno to a jump-off time of 39.522 seconds.
“We definitely made the time in the first three fences,” explained Comly, who has had the ride on Derby CSH for the past two years. “After that, I could pull on the reins a little bit and steady him because the first three jumps, we already had the time. He was so fast.”
Comly continued, “We call him the red dragon; he’s a fireball. When he’s good, he’s unbeatable. It’s like he shot out of a cannon. He’s crazy wild. He doesn’t really like to keep a lead, so he’s kind of cantering all over the place, but as soon as you point him at a fence, he’s going over. He wants to go clean, so I really don’t care what he does between the fences!”
After topping the Welcome Stake on Thursday, Comly returned to the main indoor at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center on Friday to make it two in a row. This time, she claimed victory in the $5,000 Hygain Mini Prix aboard Kyra van de Doornhaag, owned by Foxglove LLC. Finishing in second place in the Friday featured class were Lindsay Buck on Whiskey Neat, and Hannah Colligan and Silhouette CF rounded out the top three.
“I love the people [here at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center],” concluded Comly. “Amy [Uniss-Coleman] takes care of us every time we come out here. We love it. Danny Foster’s a great course designer. He loves it when we go really fast and have a really game jump-off. For the people in Texas, it’s fun coming back home, after being gone all summer, and seeing everybody again.”
For full results of the $10,000 Antarès Welcome Stake, click here.