Lexington, KY – May 18, 2008 –
Margie Engle of Wellington, FL, led her third victory gallop in two weeks at the Kentucky Spring Classic this afternoon. She piloted Hidden Creek’s Pamina L to another incredible finish in the $55,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix CSI 3*, topping a field of 36 entries for the win. They took home top honors in the $30,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic Grand Prix CSI 3* on Thursday, May 15, and they sealed the win last Sunday in the $55,000 Commonwealth Grand Prix CSI 3*.
The $55,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix was held in the indoor arena today, and Guilherme Jorge of Brazil designed the course. Eleven horse and rider combinations qualified for the jump-off, which was held at the end of the class. Alison Robitaille, of Madison, VA, chose not to participate in the tie breaker with her horse, Intrepide Du Valon. Their withdrawal automatically placed them in eleventh.
Difficult parts of the jump-off included numerous tall single verticals, a long gallop to a large oxer by the in-gate, a one-stride combination, and an orange oxer with a panel as its front rail.
Mario Deslauriers returned aboard Obelix R, and they had a beautiful, polished trip, hustling home in a fast 40.00 seconds. Deslauriers rode Obelix R for owner Lisa Silverman of New York, NY. Jimmy Torano of Fort Lauderdale, FL, rode Caldam’Or next, and they had a bit of difficulty with the orange oxer. They came home with four jumping and two time faults, which would hold up for seventh place. Caldam’Or is owned by SCNC Investments.
Schuyler Riley accrued eight faults with LaPacco, owned by South Beach Stable of Wellington, FL, and Todd Minikus had an unfortunate rail with his mount Ultimo Van Ter Moude. Minikus resides in Loxahatchee, FL.
Engle and her mare Pamina L, owned by Hidden Creek Farm of Oak Creek, WI, were next in the order. Picking up an incredibly fast pace, Engle flew over the first vertical, made a tight, fluid right turn to the second vertical, and she opened Pamina’s stride and thundered down to the oxer adjacent to the in-gate. Engle then asked her horse to speed across the ring once again, and the mare backed off perfectly for the vertical-to-oxer combination. Their momentum carried them through the next tight turn, over the orange oxer, and Engle floored it around the final turn to the last jump, a triple bar oxer. They stopped the clock in 38.90 seconds, edging Deslauriers into second place.
Brian Shook rode a safe, clean round aboard Courage 68, and they crossed the finish line in 42.27 seconds. Shook’s horse is owned by Equestrian Endeavors of Fenton, MI. Up Chiqui and Kent Farrington were next to take on the short course, and Engle fans held their breath as one of the fastest horse and rider combinations received the tone. Farrington’s mount sped around the course, arching over the obstacles, turning tightly, and making up time across the ground. As they jumped up over the orange oxer, Up Chiqui grazed the front panel and ticked it off the jump cups. Its thud revealed that Farrington would not surpass Engle this afternoon. His time of 37.01 seconds was the fastest time of the day, but their four fault score would later result in a fourth place finish. Up Chiqui is owned by Boone, Dobbs, and McNerney of Carmel, IN.
Michael Morrissey lowered the height of one fence with his horse Crelido, owned by Eugene Mische of Bradenton, FL, and Angela Moore scored eight faults with her horse Claus. Moore’s horse is owned by Stealaway Farm of Wellington, FL. Christine McCrea and Promised Land had eight faults as well, and they finished in ninth place. Promised Land is owned by Windsor Show Stables of East Windsor, CT.
Engle’s outstanding ride held up for the win, and Hidden Creek’s Pamina L added another Grand Prix victory to her recent list of successes.
“The course rode nicer than I thought,” Engle grinned after her victory lap. “I thought there would be fewer clean. I think it was a little bigger than the other day, but now horses have been in there a bit. The last line rode a little technical; it was a triple bar to a very steady four to the last jump, a liverpool vertical.”
“Every time I ride her, she feels like she learns something when she goes in the ring,” she said of Pamina. “She feels like she gets a little bit better every time. I get temped to go too fast with her, but she doesn’t seem to be getting backed off or scared. She loves going fast, and she’s great going for the time. It’s fun to have one that likes going fast again. She just amazes me,” she revealed. “She really wants to learn, she’s a competitor, and she enjoys what she’s doing.”
“Her left turns still need a little work,” she laughed. “I knew her right turns were going to be great. She was super from fences one to two. She really spun back, and I left out a stride – and she jumped even higher. Instead of getting flat, it’s like she’s on springs and she just boing-ed up over it.”
Engle described her jump-off round and how it felt with Pamina. “I galloped down to the oxer great, but then, when I went to turn left, she got a little bit tough to turn back to the double. I had one more [stride] there than I wanted to because I didn’t get that turn as nice as I would have liked. I was worried about the last left turn, but she was great. She galloped up to the last triple bar and jumped it beautifully for me. She accelerates very quickly off the turns, and she felt super today.”
The Kentucky Spring Classic concluded today at the Kentucky Horse Park, and the management company, Kentucky Horse Shows LLC, will start preparing for the Kentucky Summer Horse Shows, which will be held at the park from July 30-August 10, 2008.
Results of $55,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix II, Sec 2(a)
1 - 1205 HIDDEN
CREEK'S PAMINA L MARGIE ENGLE USA 0.00 74.42 0.00 38.90 $16500 HIDDEN
For more information on the Kentucky Spring Classic, please go to www.kentuckyhorseshows.com.