East Dorset, Vermont — Jimmy Torano opened the second week of competition in the Vermont Summer Festival with two top finishes on Wednesday, July 13, in East Dorset, Vermont. A familiar face at the Vermont Summer Festival, Torano of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, won the 1.30m Jumper competition riding Katina and placed second in the $5,000 1.40m Open Jumper competition with Winner.
Katina, a mare normally ridden by Torano’s wife, Danielle, set a blistering fast pace to top the field of 19 entries in the 1.30m jumper competition. “She’s got two gears – fast and faster,” joked Torano of the 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood mare. “I just let her go at her own speed, and she won by quite a lot.”
During the opening week of competition, Danielle Torano placed fifth with Katina in the $30,000 Vermont Summer Special Grand Prix, presented by The Equinox Resort and Spa. Torano took over riding duties for Wednesday’s 1.30m competition as Katina was being shown for the first time in a hackamore bridle. With the equipment change proving successful, Danielle Torano will resume riding duties for the remainder of the week.
In the $5,000 1.40m Open Jumper competition, a total of six horse-rider combinations advanced to the jump-off over the track set by Anthony D’Ambrosio of Red Hook, New York.
It was the very first jump-off challenger, Darragh Kenny of Ireland, who posted the day’s winning time of 34.89 seconds. Riding Obelix, a 15-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, Kenny made quick work of the shortened jump-off track to capture the win, and also placed third with Bazooka de Muze.
Torano came closest to catching him, guiding Winner home fault-free in a time of 37.31 seconds. “I just got him a month ago and am trying to get to know him,” said Torano of the eight-year-old bay Dutch Warmblood gelding. “He’s very scopey and careful, I’ve just got to figure out the buttons. He was doing some 1.40m competitions in Europe, and I think he’ll jump all the bigger classes in Florida this winter as a nine-year-old.”
Winner is one of three horses that Torano is planning to ride in Friday’s $10,000 Five Seasons Welcome Stake, Presented by Manchester Designer Outlets. Joining Winner will be Wise Guy and Wishful, all eight-year-old Dutch-bred horses. Torano’s JET Show Stable brought a total of 30 horses to this year’s Vermont Summer Festival, and will compete throughout the six-week show jumping event. While Jimmy and Danielle compete at the grand prix level, their four-year-daughter Natalia will be contesting the Walk and Walk/Trot divisions with her chestnut pony, Farnley Chapka.
The second week of the Vermont Summer Festival features the $30,000 Battenkill Grand Prix, Presented by Johnson Horse Transportation, at 1 p.m. on Sunday, July 17.
Offering more than $750,000 in prize money, the Vermont Summer Festival is the richest sporting event based on purse in the state of Vermont. The first five Sundays of the Vermont Summer Festival feature a $30,000 Grand Prix at 1 p.m., culminating with the $50,000 Vermont Summer Celebration Grand Prix on Sunday, August 14. In addition to the $10,000 Open Welcome Stake, Presented by Manchester Designer Outlets, held each Friday, the weekly $10,000 Show Jumping Hall of Fame Junior/Amateur-Owner Classics are hotly contested. New for 2011, the Vermont Summer Festival will host a $5,000 Hunter Derby each Thursday five of the six weeks.
Competition begins at 8 a.m. daily, Wednesday through Sunday. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for children, Wednesday through Saturday. On Grand Prix Sunday, admission is $7 for adults, $5 for children. As always, 100 percent of the gate proceeds benefit the Friends Foundation for MEMS, (Manchester Elementary and Middle School).
For over 20 years, the Vermont Summer Festival has attracted exhibitors and their families to the Manchester region each summer. For more information about the Vermont Summer Festival, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.vt-summerfestival.com.
$5,000 1.40m Open Jumper – Wednesday, July 13
1. Darragh Kenny Obelix 0:0 34.89
2. Jimmy Torano Winner 0:0 37.31
3. Darragh Kenny Bazooka de Muze 0:0 41.96
4. Emily Pope Seize The Moment 0:0 42.31
5. Devin Ryan Callisandro 0:4 34.99
6. Michael Dorman Cermit 0:4 39.89
7. Michael Dorman Patina 4
8. Danielle Torano Capitano 4
Photo: Jimmy Torano riding Katina won the 1.30m Jumper competition held Wednesday, July 13, at the Vermont Summer Festival horse show in East Dorset, Vermont. Photo credit - David Mullinix Photography