Edited Press Release
After several podium finishes here in the desert, Nicky Galligan got his win Sunday morning in the $30,000 Marshall & Sterling 1.40m Open Classic at Desert Circuit 3. Of his two mounts qualified for the second course, it was Eames MZ, owned by Santa Rosa Group, who topped the competitive 13-horse jump-off.
Manuel Esparza’s jump-off track was primarily unrelated distances, with swooping rollback turns and long gallops between fences, which contrasted with a few of the recent tracks that have involved bending lines and allowed for leaving out strides.
When asked about his jump-off plan, Galligan responded, “My plan? Go as fast as I can go! It was a bit of an unusual jump-off, in the sense that we are so numerical in the sport at the moment. It’s nice to do something a little different in the jump-off.”
“[It was a] really, really competitive class this morning,” Galligan commented. “I’m delighted to finally get a win. I’ve been jumping these classes since the [National] Sunshine Series.” Just weeks ago, Galligan and long-time partner, Javas Miss Jordan, finished second in National grand prix action, among other podium finishes just short of victory.
Eames MZ is a newer mount for Galligan and was a seemingly unlikely partner to carry him into the winner’s circle. “He’s a little on the tricky side,” Galligan said of the 14-year old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Van Gogh x Faldo). “He’s a newer ride for me and one we are just getting to know a little bit. I have to say he’s had a really good two weeks here, and what a way to finish it off.”
Karl Cook and Signe Otsby’s Caillou 24 claimed second-place honors, while Kaitlin Campbell and Armentos, owned by SWS Training & Sales, finished third.
After a recent relocation, Galligan is focused on building up his less experienced horses and training his students. “Paige [Jardine] and myself are developing some [horses] to see what they can turn into,” he reflected. With this win under his belt, Galligan looks forward to gearing up for the remaining six weeks of Desert Circuit.
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The Pacific Coast Horse Shows Association (PCHA), a non-profit corporation, has as its main purpose the promotion and development of the sport of horse showing, primarily in the Hunter/Jumper, Western and Reining disciplines. These objectives are accomplished by setting the standards for showing on the West Coast and approving shows that meet these criteria.
Founded in 1946, the Pacific Coast Horse Shows Association promotes the interests of owners and exhibitors, cooperates with exhibitors, officials, and management of competition, publicizes and advertises PCHA sanctioned shows, encourages and assists owners, exhibitors, and breeders of horses to maintain, develop and improve the quality of horses of the Hunter, Jumper, Western and Reining divisions.