Mill Spring, NC - Fabio Andres Rodriguez, who represents the nation of Colombia in competition, guided his mount Venus to a first place finish in the $5,000 Under 25 Welcome at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC), taking the class with a jump-off time of 33.336 seconds.
Hilary McNerney of Lake Forest, IL, and Contact earned second place after crossing through the timers in 34.116 seconds. Viggo Bjorklund of Wellington, FL, and Abu Dhabi Gold collected third place with a time of 34.362 seconds.
Competition at the 2016 Tryon Fall Series presented by Greenville-Spartanburg Airport District commenced on Thursday, September 22, and will continue through Sunday, October 30, featuring hunter and jumper competition, alongside two weeks of FEI CSI 3* classes and an FEI CSI 5*.
Rodriguez and Venus, a 2002 Dutch Warmblood mare (Tangelo van de Zuuthoeve x Julius) owned by Raylyn Farms LLC, made easy work of their time in the George H. Morris Arena today, completing two solid rounds to mark their first major victory at TIEC this season.
"I had already jumped a horse in the class earlier and I made a small mistake," he explained. "I work for Andrea King and we made a plan for the next ride. We kept it very organized and at the same time I think the plan we made was very effective."
Venus has valuable experience in the ring and has jumped with a number of top professionals at the highest levels of the sport. Rodriguez feels honored to jump such a class mare and feel that they have a great partnership beginning to grow.
"She's a very experienced horse. She's been ridden a lot by Angel Karyoli and Marilyn Little. She's just very nice," he elaborated. "She's a bit hot and she really wants to go all of the time. She's very quick and she's clean so I don't have to worry about the rails. I just need to be effective and accurate."
Rodriguez is an emerging talent for his home nation of Colombia and described his ideal ride, which he believes is a perfect fit with the demeanor of his new ride Venus. He stated, "I'm very relaxed with the horses and I like to wait. She's the kind of horse I think I would do very well with."
"I think that we will be in Ocala, FL, or Wellington, FL, this winter, which will be good for us both. I think looking forward I'd like to be prepared to begin the process with the Colombian team to potentially be able to go to the next Olympics. That would be the best place for us to start."
For more information on Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) and surrounding amenities please visit www.tryon.com.
To view results for the $5,000 Under 25 Welcome please click here.