Eliza Shuford and Otis Win $50,000 HITS Grand Prix at Cavalier Classic at HITS Culpeper III

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CULPEPER, VA (July 15, 2001)-Eliza Shuford of Hickory, North Carolina, riding Otis, won the $50,000 HITS Grand Prix at the Cavalier Classic Horse Show in Culpeper, Virginia, today. The Cavalier Classic is the third of six shows in the HITS Culpeper series at Commonwealth Park held from May to September. Shuford was the fastest of three double-clears in a field of 22 horses, beating Ian Silitch on Brave Ally by just .068 of a second. An amateur-owner rider, Shuford entered three horses in the Grand Prix, but qualified only Otis, for the Jump-Off. As owner/rider of the winner, Shuford took home $15,000. 

Peter Holmes of Victoria, British Columbia, designed the course. For Round One, Holmes built 12-jumps that included a vertical-vertical double at Fence No. 4, and a vertical-oxer-oxer triple combination at Fence No. 8. Time Allowed was set at 84 seconds. Eight horses jumped clear rounds and qualified for the Jump-Off. 

In the Jump-Off round, riders started off at the oxer at Fence No. 5, turned left for a long gallop around the arena to another oxer at Fence No. 11, then made a hard right to the vertical-oxer at 8AB, followed by a rollback to the oxer at 2, a gallop to the yellow slats at 3, then a long diagonal gallop home to the final oxer at 14. Time Allowed was set at 51 seconds. 

Patty Stovel of Far Hills, New Jersey, on Mont Cenis, a horse she owns with Lexie Stovel and Karen Murphy, was first in the Jump-Off order and set the pace with a clear round in 39.128, but finished in third place for $6,500. Harold Chopping of Wake Forest, North Carolina, was next to go on Shadwell, and was faster by fractions, clocking in at 39.000, but had a rail for four faults. Chopping placed fourth and earned $4,000 for owners Mr. and Mrs. Wyatt Stewart. 

Next in the order was amateur rider Tracy Bartko of Hughesville, Maryland, on Argus who put in the fastest round of the Jump-Off, tripping the timers in 38.531, but the duo lowered two fences for eight faults. Bartko took home the sixth place ribbon and $2,500 for owner John Bartko. 

Ian Silitch of Sperryville, Virginia, on Brave Ally cleared the course in 39.047, edging Stovel out of the lead, but he ended up second, earning $11,000 for owner November Hill Farm. Laurie Jakubauskas riding Kosmos for LRJ Enterprises was fifth to try the course, but accumulated 11 faults in 50.491, which relegated her to eighth place and a $1,500 paycheck. Robin Sweely of Madison, Virginia, went next in the order on Calvin N Hobbs and challenged the leader but had two rails down for eight faults in 41.474 and placed seventh, earning $2,000 for owner Acorn Hill Farm Inc. Mark Jungherr of Amesbury, Massachusetts, on Aalsmeer's Enterprize had the unfortunate last rail down in the Jump-Off for four faults in 40.454, which put him fifth. Jungherr took home $3,000 for owner Aalsmeer Farm. 

Last in the order was Shuford on Otis, who shaved a split second off Silitch's time to snatch the lead and the win. 

HITS Commonwealth Park is located at 13256 Commonwealth Parkway in Culpeper, Virginia, 3.5 miles off Route 522 South. During HITS Culpeper horse shows, telephone 540-825-7469 for more information. 

MEDIA CONTACT: Mary Hilton, HITS Media & Public Relations, 319 Main Street, Saugerties, NY 12477, Phone: 845-246-8833, Fax: 845-246-6371. E-Mail: hiltonhits@cs.com

$50,000 HITS Grand Prix, July 15, 2001 HITS Culpeper III, Culpeper, Virginia

Course Designer: Peter Holmes 

Pl#/Horse/Rider/Owner/Prize Money/Rd 1 Faults/J-O Faults & Time

1/Otis/Eliza Shuford/Eliza Shuford/$15,000/0/0/39.979

2/Brave Ally/Ian Silitch/November Hill Farm/$11,000/0/0/39.047

3/Mont Cenis/Patricia Stovel/Patty & Lexie Stovel and Karen Murphy/$6,500/0/0/39.128

4/Shadwell/Harold Chopping/M&M Wyatt Stewart/$4,000/0/4/39.00

5/Aalsmeer's Enterprize/Mark Jungherr/Aalsmeer Farm/$3,000/0/4/40.454

6/Argus/Tracy Bartko/John Bartko/$2,500/0/8/38.531

7/Calvin N Hobbs/Robin Sweely/Acorn Hill Farm Inc/$2,000/0/8/41.474

8/Kosmos/Laurie Jakubauskas/LRJ Enterprises/$1,500/0/11/50.491

9/Cable/Ian Silitch/Ian & Jacquelyn Silitch/$1,500/4/NA

10/Set in Silver/Ian Silitch/Lynne E Spangenburg/$1,000/4/NA

11/Freedom Z/Robin Sweely/Acorn Hill Farm Inc./$1,000/4/NA

12/Inner Beauty/Emil Spadone/Paul Sa/$1,000/4/NA 

Number of horses who competed in this class: 22

Class Prize Money: $50,000