Alison Robitaille Rolls into Winner's Circle in Wellington

WELLINGTON, FL, Feb. 6 -

The fourth week of the CN Winter Equestrian Festival, presented by Zimmerman Advertising, began with a win for Alison Robitaille of Upperville, Va., and her mount, Pourquoi.

The pair was one of 28 entries to contest Wednesday morning's $8,000 1.45m competition which featured a track set by 2008 co-course designer Steve Stephens of Palmetto, Fla. With a clear round in a time of 64.17 seconds, well under the time allowed of 74 seconds, Robitaille shot to the top of the leader board. She managed to hold off Todd Minikus of Loxahatchee, Fla., who mounted a late challenge with Alaska in a time of 66.55 seconds as well as Francisco Martinez who stopped the clock at 69.71 seconds with Phelox.

"I went pretty early and my horse is naturally fast, so I just kept going and tried to get a good piece of it," noted Robitaille, 31, of her 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood mare sired by Concorde. "She really wants to win. This is only the second 1.45m class she has ever done in her life, so I am thrilled with her today."

Robitaille noted that Pourquoi was a horse picked out by her parents, Diana and Bertram Firestone, as a two-year-old in foal.

"She had her baby, and then we broke her as four-year-old. She is really sweet in the barn and she loves her groom, Jose. She nickers when he comes in the barn and she will follow him around without a lead. She is very spoiled," related Robitaille.

In the $6,000 1.40m Speed class, it was Nicole Simpson who emerged victorious from a starting field of 68 entries. Riding Concerto for owner Jane Clark, Simpson crossed the timers in 63.52 seconds to edge out 2004 Olympic gold medalist Chris Kappler who clocked in at 64.85 seconds riding Maserati. Third place went to Ireland's Shane Sweetnam who was riding Memphis for owner Caitlyn Shiels.

The CSI3* Spy Coast Farm Week Four of the CN Winter Equestrian Festival, presented by Zimmerman Advertising, runs daily through Sunday, February 10. Highlights include Thursday's $30,000 WEF Challenge Cup Series Round III and Sunday's $60,000 Spy Coast Farm Wellington Cup CSI3*.

Results of Class 1002 - $8,000 1.45m
W.E.F. 4 - Spy Coast Farm "AA" Presented by Arthur Rutenberg Homes

1 - 3168 POURQUOI ALISON ROBITAILLE 0.00 64.710
M/M BERTRAM FIRESTONE
2 - 3874 ALASKA TODD MINIKUS 0.00 66.551
CALLIE SEAMAN
3 - 2281 PHELOX FRANCISCO MARTINEZ 0.00 69.716
ERIKA MORALES
4 - 5263 NIELSON B JEANNE HOBBS 0.00 71.321
JEANNE HOBBS
5 - 3366 PITAREUSA YANN CANDELE 0.00 71.813
SUSAN GRANGE LOTHLORIEN
6 - 6007 SONDRIO ERIC HASBROUCK 0.00 73.307
ERIC HASBROUCK
7 - 478 PALONA LAURA BOWERY 4.00 60.942
JOSEPH DI MENNA
8 - 2112 JUDGEMENT BEEZIE MADDEN 4.00 62.538
IRON SPRING FARM
9 - 6335 WILMA FERRENSTEIN 005 SAMUEL PAROT 4.00 63.185
SAMUEL PAROT
10 - 1165 LARIOSO MCLAIN WARD 4.00 65.297
BLUE CHIP BLOODSTOCK
11 - 2444 CARACAS 49 KEVIN BABINGTON 4.00 67.323
BABINGTON JUMPERS
12 - 2914 SANTA TERESITA GENTLE R ERYNN BALLARD 4.00 70.126
MITCHELL GALLINGER

Results of Class 1004 - $6,000 1.40m II, Section 1
W.E.F. 4 - Spy Coast Farm "AA" Presented by Arthur Rutenberg Homes

1 - 1103 CONCERTO NICOLE SIMPSON 0.00 63.525 JANE CLARK
2 - 1532 MASERATI CHRIS KAPPLER 0.00 64.858 MARSHA DAMMERMAN
3 - 7178 MEMPHIS SHANE SWEETNAM 0.00 67.949 CAITLYN SHIELS
4 - 1757 WARCO VAN DE HALHOEVE ALI NILFORUSHAN 0.00 68.514 ALI NILFORUSHAN
5 - 5320 LULLABY HENRIK GUNDERSEN 0.00 69.013 HORSES UNLIMITED
6 - 5830 CLEAR ROUNDS THAN PARTY PETER WYLDE 0.00 70.227
7 - 2072 NOCTURNAL LAURA KRAUT 0.00 71.664 PIN OAK FARM
8 - 305 DORNADOC FEDERICO SZTYRLE 0.00 71.806 HERB SAMBOL
9 - 751 ESKADEUR M MICHAEL MELLER 0.00 71.839 VANESSA FOOTE
10 - 6301 LUIS 13 SANDY VAN DYKE 0.00 72.352 JULIANNA FISCHER
11 - 5893 MALCOM NORMAN DELLO JOIO 0.00 74.617 THE FEDERMAN FAMILY ELLIE
12 - 1756 VOICE ALI NILFORUSHAN 0.00 76.047 ALI NILFORUSHAN


Alison Robitaille and Pourquoi won the $8,000 1.45m competition to open week four.
Photo: Ken Braddick, Equestrian Sport Productions

 

The 2008 CN Winter Equestrian Festival attracts the best horses and riders from around the world to Wellington and offers more than $5 million in prize money. For more information, visit www.equestriansport.com

 

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