Devon, PA - July 3, 2011 - It's not the Fourth of July yet, but fireworks were already on display this afternoon in the jumper ring at Brandywine Valley Summer Series, presented by Taylor Harris Insurance Services. Countering the overcast skies, two rousing Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Classics lit up the Dixon Oval of the Devon Show Grounds. Julia Fowler and Alex Matz both earned championship honors in the the Junior Amateur-Owner Jumper Division, while Fowler and Saly Glassman garnered blue ribbons in today's highlight events.
The $3,500 Show Jumping Hall of Fame High Junior/Amateur-Owner Classic was the first jumper event of the day, with Julia Fowler and her own horse, Presco, getting off to a promising start. The duo soared to a clear round, despite the many brightly colored jumps that stopped several horses in their tracks this afternoon. Fowler and Presco sailed smoothly to - and through - the jump-off, finishing in a brisk 33.03 seconds. "I'm definitely not the fastest rider generally," commented Fowler after her win, "so it was a good week for me. My horse was awesome, he jumped fantastically, and he just genuinely tries really hard out there."
After picking up her blue ribbon for her win in the Classic, Fowler returned to the ring to receive the championship tricolor for topping the division. "It feels really good to be champion," laughed Fowler. "This is a cool horse show, and given that it's everyone's first time at Brandywine, it's just been really great to be here and participate." Fowler hails from West Hartford, CT, and trains with Andre Dignelli of Heritage Farm, located in Katonah, NY.
Reserve champion of the High Junior Amateur-Owner Jumper Division was Janice Syphers, who capped-off a great week at Brandywine with a speedy turn in the High Classic. She and GK Calucci had the fastest regular round, and kept up the pace in an extremely close jump-off. Barely behind Fowler's winning time, Syphers and her mount clocked-in at 33.099 seconds. "He really helped me out today," she commented. "He just listened really well and worked really hard, and I could feel that. He just jumped great." Syphers will also be here for the second week of Brandywine Valley Summer Series, and looks forward to participating in the $10,000 Brandywine Valley Mini Prix. GK Calucci is owned by Kindle Hill Affiliates of Gwynedd Valley, PA. Syphers trains with Kevin Babington of Kindle Hill.
The $2,500 Low Junior/Amateur-Owner Classic was won by Saly Glassman aboard Lorado 28, also owned by Kindle Hill Affiliates. Clearing the jump-off course in 34.867 seconds, the pair leaped to the top of a highly competitive class. Coming in second was Madeline Turner on Calgary, owned by Turner of Montclair, NJ. The duo calmly navigated the course's very tight turns, earning not only a yellow ribbon but also reserve championship honors in the Low Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Division. Alex Matz was the champion, and today the young rider added two very fast rounds to his roster of successes at Brandywine. Matz piloted both Counterfoil, owned by Laurie Jakubauskas of Kennett Square, PA, and Jolly Mome, owned by Trelawny Farm, LLC of Bedford, NY, in today's Classic.
Several horse and rider combinations boasted fault-free trips over Jose Gamarra's course during the Low Classic, including winner Glassman herself aboard another talented horse, Capadina. It was Lorado 28, though, that carried Glassman to the blue ribbon. "He actually had an injury in December," remarked Glassman. "This was his first show back, and he was kind of aggressive in the jump-off. I was actually going to add a stride at one jump, and he said, 'We don't need to add that.' He's very temperamental, but he's also very literal - like, you can tell him 'left,' and he'll seem to go, 'Well, did you mean five centimeters left, or did you want a turn on the haunches?' He's very literal, almost like a mare or like a stallion. He's also a winner. He goes in the ring and has the attitude, 'I want to win. I'm here to win.' When he hears applause, he hears people cheering, he thinks it's all for him. All of our horses are like that; they're all kind of macho."
Both of today's Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Classics were generously sponsored by M&T Bank, and marked the final day of competition during the first week of the Brandywine Valley Summer Series. The 'AA'-rated show continues through the end of next week, beginning on Wednesday, July 6,and running through Sunday, July 10. Second week highlights will include the $10,000 Canine Partners for Life Mini Prix and the second $3,000 Johnson Horse Transportation USHJA National Hunter Derby. The action-packed series will culminate with a local day of competition on July 11.
For more information about the Brandywine Valley Summer Series, please visit http://brandywinevalleysummerseries.com.
Photo Credit: Julia Fowler Aboard Presco. Fowler was High Junior Amateur-Owner Jumper Division Champion at the Brandywine Valley Summer Series. Photo By: Robyn Keyster/PMG.