TORRES AND CHAMBACUNERO WIN $50,000 FOOTINGS UNLTD
OCALA, FL (February 28, 2005) --
Colombia's Manuel Torres rode Chambacunero, owned by Ana Maria De Cadena, to the win in the $50,000 Footings Unlimited Grand Prix during week III of the HITS Ocala Winter Circuit. The four-time Olympian was the only rider to post a double-clear over the course set by Michel Vaillancourt of Ontario.
"The course was very technical, and a little bigger than I expected considering the weather, but the new footing here is amazing and my horse was very comfortable."
Chambacunero is a young horse, an 8-year-old Dutch stallion. "His first Grand Prix was in Raleigh last November and we placed second. This competition is my first win with him." Torres has been named to Colombia's Equestrian Team and intends to ride Chambacunero in the World Championships next year in Germany.
With Aaron Vale and Harold Chopping joining him in the jump-off, Manuel Torres was facing some stiff competition. Vale was the first to attempt the seven-obstacle short course aboard Arriscraft Soliel. A proven mount for Vale, Arriscraft Soliel, was the winner of the $50,000 EMO Grand Prix in week I. Going first, Vale's only option was fast or faster. Arriscraft Soliel delivered the speed, stopping the timers in 40.41 seconds, but an unlucky rail left them with four faults. Vale finished with the fastest time of the competition by almost 4 seconds.
Manuel Torres was up next, and he guided Chambacunero clear in a careful time of 46.81 seconds. "I was sitting on a very new horse and I knew my only possibility was to go clear. Chambacunero wasn't fast enough or experienced enough, going clear was our best bet."
Harold Chopping and Rabaila, winners of Thursday's $25,000 HITS Grand Prix, pulled a rail at the second obstacle and it was all over. Torres claimed the win, Vale took second place, and Harold Chopping finished in third.
Other major award winners at HITS Ocala Masters included:
Medal Elizabeth Schaper, Guilford, CT
The next Grand Prix event of the circuit will take place on Thursday, March 3rd at 1pm. Spectators will enjoy world-class show jumping competition as riders compete for top honors in the $25,000 HITS Grand Prix. The $50,000 HITS Grand Prix will finish out the week on Sunday, March 6th at 1pm.
THROUGH SUNDAY REMAINING 2005 SHOW DATES ARE:
POST TIME TRAINING FARM - 13710 U.S. Hwy 27; Ocala, Florida 34482; Tel: 352-620-2275. Website: www.HitsShows.com
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