Dec. 13, 2023 – Ocala, FL – Horse and rider combinations returned to the HITS Post Time Farm to kickoff a bustling week of competition featuring top level show jumping, hunters, and equitation. The venue had an added flair to it as the week began with the addition of World Champion Hunter Rider (WCHR) status to many of its hunter divisions, as well as prize money offerings in multiple jumper divisions. While the professional hunter divisions debuted the featured hunter competition, the $2,500 HITS Open Welcome Stake launched the jumpers into full swing with a win by Jared Petersen and Kawir MS.
A field of five returned for the short track designed by Oscar Soberon with Petersen taking the early lead on Jordan Petersen’s seven-year-old Belgian Sporthorse gelding (Comme Il Faut) . Petersen set an impressive pace and proved entirely unbeatable with his tidy time of 42.635 seconds.
“I thought it was a really nice first class of the week,” Petersen commented. “The jump off had a lot of space to open up in between fences which he excels at. I just let him keep moving and hoped for no rails.”
The young gelding is a quick rising star for Petersen who has his eyes set on the weekend’s $25,000 HorseFlight Grand Prix.
“If all goes according to plan he will show in the $10,000 HITS Open Prix on Friday, and if that goes well he may do his first grand prix Sunday,” he explained. “He is just coming eight so that would be his first big class of the winter but I think HITS is a great place to come for these young horses.”
Will Coleman showed up with the second fastest time aboard the Hyperion Stud’s eight-year-old Holsteiner gelding (Comme Il Faut) Comme Again HS on a fault-free finish of 46.298 seconds. Amanda Flint put herself in two of the top five positions after ribboning third with her own 11-year-old KWPN gelding (Arezzo VDL) Hudson and fifth on Irvington VDL.
Professional Hunters Strut into WCHR Week
Boots glistened and a series of stunning horses strutted their stuff around Hunter One as a slew of professional hunter riders took center stage to start off an exciting week of WCHR competition. The first ribbon of the morning went to Colin Savaria and Hela in the Green / High Performance Conformation Hunter Model. David Jenning’s mount Main Squeeze took the top call in the Green Hunter 3’6” under saddle class, while Kate Conover and Small Love earned back to back first place ribbons in the Combined High Performance / Performance Hunter 3’6” division’s jumpingclasses. Newly-arrived from Wellington, FL, Havens Schatt and Verity earned a twin set of blues as the top performer in the Green Hunter 3’3” division’s jumping classes.
Professional hunter divisions will resume Thursday, December 14 for the final rounds of competition before naming division champions and top jumper competition is set to return to the Grand Prix Ring. For a full list of results please visit www.showmanagementsystem.com.