Lexington, KY – A star-studded international field of horses and riders put on spectacular performances at the Split Rock Jumping Tour’s second show of the season, the Bourbon International CSI 3*. The event, which ran from October 6-9, 2016, was internationally-rated by the FEI for the second consecutive year, offering jumper classes for juniors, amateur-owners and professionals and again received rave reviews from the participants.
Colombian cousins Ilan and Daniel Bluman took first and second place respectively in the $130,000 CSI 3* Grand Prix presented by Split Rock Farm, the feature event of the Bourbon International CSI 3*. The Grand Pix saw 33 horse-and-rider combinations start over a course designed by Oscar Soberon, Dallas, TX.
Ilan Bluman and Ladriano Z, owned by Blue Star Investments and Daniel Bluman and his Bacara D’Archonfosse, were the only competitors in the seven horse jump-off to turn in fault-free rides. Daniel produced the first clear in a time of 47.43 seconds, while Ilan turned up the heat and crossed the timers in 40.43 seconds to claim victory.
“I don’t know what to say, I am just really excited!” said a delighted Ilan Bluman after the prize giving. “This is my second FEI ranking class win and I have been working for that for almost five years. I am really happy with my horse, he is amazing.”
Show Jumping Hall of Famer Katie Prudent expressed the feelings of all the riders in praising the Split Rock Jumping Tour and Derek Braun, the show’s Founder and President. “It is a very special horse show because it has all the ingredients that we look for in a good show,” she said. “It has a beautiful ring, beautiful footing, lovely schooling area and an indoor arena if the weather gets bad, but the best part about this show is the attitude of all the people who work here. There could not a more friendly experience. Derek has done an incredible job and it has been wonderful to be here.”
Lugano Diamonds, known for their stunning, one-of-a-kind, wearable art pieces, joined the Split Rock Jumping Tour as the VIP Hospitality Tent sponsor, as well as the sponsor of the $10,000 Lugano Diamonds Under 25 Young Rider Cup class.
Since its inception, Lugano Diamonds has been a strong supporter of the equestrian industry and their association with the Split Rock Jumping Tour follows that history of sponsoring the best and most innovative venues in the world.
“Derek invited us to Split Rock last year and we were really impressed,” said Stuart Winston, Vice President of Marketing at Lugano Diamonds. “We do a lot of shows in and out of the U.S. and I really must say that his attention to detail was impressive. It is already an important event and I feel that it will become even more important. So it was a good fit for us and we are so happy to be here.”
The $10,000 Lugano Diamonds Under 25 Young Rider Cup went to Ireland’s Daniel Coyle and Tienna, an eight-year-old mare owned by Susan Grange, which was their second win of the week. Five horses produced clear first rounds to move on to the deciding jump-off. Coyle and Tienna were the last to go and turned in a flawless round in a time of 38.15 seconds to clinch the win, edging Venezuelan Olympic veteran Emanuel Andrade and Belita into second place.
“With this mare, the more you go for it the better she gets,” said Coyle. “I was glad when Emanuel went clear because I had to go a little faster. With her, going slow is never a good thing. She just flies over the jumps.”
Coyle and Tienna also topped a starting field of 50 entries to win the $35,000 Hollow Creek CSI 3* Speed Cup with a clear round and a blistering time of 57.74 seconds. Coyle also turned in a faultless round aboard his second mount, Fortis Fortuna, also owned by Grange, but was almost a second slower, crossing through the timers in 58.64 seconds, but still a full four seconds faster than anyone else.
“It is my first time here and it’s a lovely show, it’s been very good for me,” said Coyle, 22, in his heavy Irish brogue. “I couldn’t be any happier. I’ve had a great show!”
Alison Robitaille and the 7-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare Ginger Pop proved to be the best in the $10,000 ESI 1.40 Meter Youngster Bowl. Last to go in a 10 horse jump-off, the pair sped around the shortened course in a time of 39.112 seconds to win the class.
“This is about my fifth horse show with her and I am really excited about this young mare,” said Robitaille. “She is so game and really special. This was just so exciting today. I’m having a great show!”
Derek Braun was impressed with the depth of talent featured in the class. “The quality of the horses in this Youngster Bowl was truly remarkable. You don’t often get that many young horses with grand prix potential like we had here today. All ten horses in the jump-off have legitimate grand prix futures. It was great to see.”
Bugatti lived up to his name as he zoomed around the course in the $7,500 VisitLEX 1.30 Meter Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Final, posting the only double clear rounds to pick up the win for rider Kady Abrahamson, 18, of Loveland, OH. It was quite a feat for Abrahamson and Bugatti as this was only their second show since the horse had colic surgery in April.
Logan Taylor, 17, from Cincinnati, OH, and Secretive took home the win in the $7,500 Children’s/Amateur Adult 1.10 Meter Jumper Final. “This is one of my last rides on this horse as my lease is up on him so this win is special,” said Taylor.
Ashley Falk, Gurney, IL, and her Borsalino Birdavenue won the $2,000 Child/Adult 1.10 Meter Jumper class. With a clear first round score, she was the only rider to successfully negotiate the jump-off round penalty-free for the win.
Seventeen-year-old Natalie Thornell, Loveland, OH, and Coeur De Semilly, owned by Loveland Equine Investments, came away with the win in the $2,000 VisitLEX Junior/Amateur 1.30 Meter Jumper class. It was the first visit by Thornell to Split Rock and it was the first win for the pair making this a very special event.
“I love the relaxed feel at this horse show,” said a beaming Thornell. “I love how you only have one ring, so you aren’t rushed. It’s really a good atmosphere. Usually my sister is showing in the hunter division so my parents are running back and forth. It’s great not to have the distraction.”
Ilan Bluman topped a five-nation jump-off to win the $40,000 Amalaya Investments CSI 3* Grand Prix. A field of 49 competitors started the class and five riders representing five countries were able to turn in clear rounds to make it through to the jump-off. Bluman was the first to go in the jump-off with Ladriano Z, owned by Blue Star Investments and posted the only clear round in 35.83 seconds to clinch victory.
David O’Brien from Galway, Ireland, and Spy Coast Farms’ O’Splendido won the $5,000 L.V. Harkness & Co. 1.40 Meter Jumper class with a clear round in a time of 60.741 seconds.
Olivia Chowdry, 20, from Denver, CO, and her mount Doune, were victorious in the $2,000 Low Junior/Amateur-Owner 1.20 Meter Jumper class. Of the twelve horse-and-rider combinations who made it into the jump off, they were the fastest of the eleven who managed to produce double clear rounds. Chowdry’s time of 32.857 gave them the win.
Susan Horn, Bolton, Ontario, and Egano Van Het Slogenhof owned by Kingsfield Farm, took top honors in the $2,000 Brook Ledge Transportation High Junior/Amateur-Owner 1.40 Meter Jumper class. Horn, who is trained by Canadian legend Mac Cone, was the first Canadian to mount the winner’s podium at the Bourbon International CSI 3*.
“I’ve only had him for six months, but it’s all coming together and heading in the right direction,” said Horn. “We have been working really hard, but very slowly, to keep building the partnership and it worked out very nicely today.”
The First Pump Contest, a signature element at the Split Rock Jumping Tour and the Bourbon International CSI 3* was a tie this year. Contest sponsor Equithrive® awarded a $500.00 check to joint-winners Ilan Bluman and Bryan Dietz, as both riders demonstrated the most enthusiastic ‘fist pump’ and expression for their extraordinary accomplishments at the show.
“It was a really fun competition as it was a great way for riders to be able to showcase their enthusiasm about their performances and get the crowd into it,” said Dr. Patrick Lawless, founder and CEO of Equithrive®. “Both riders exhibited a great ‘fist pump’ following their successful show jumping rounds and since it was too difficult to choose, we decided to award both of them!”
The Equis Best Presented Award, a prize presented by the Ground Jury for turn-out at the FEI Jog, was presented to Canadian rider Sarah Bagworth.