Devon, PA - June 29, 2012 - The jumper divisions concluded tonight at the Devon Show Grounds with the High and Low Junior/Amateur Owner Jumper Classics during the Brandywine Valley Summer Series horse show, presented by Taylor Harris Insurance Services (THIS). Junior rider Lillie Keenan of New York, NY completed her clean sweep of both jumper divisions with wins in both the M&T Bank $5,000 High Junior/Amateur-Owner Show Jumping Hall of Fame Classic aboard Zycarla Z, and the $3,500 NAL Low Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic benefiting the Chester County Food Bank on her own Zentina B.
Tonight's challenging track allowed the best horse and rider combinations to rise to the top. Course designer Kenny Krome included a double combination and a triple combination with a liverpool. The night kicked off with the High Junior/Amateur Owner Hall of Fame Jumper Classic, where Lillie Keenan piloted Zycarla Z, an entry owned by Abigail Wexner of New Albany, OH, to a double clear effort. They set the time to beat at a very speedy 33.553 seconds.
"During the jump-off I just wanted to give her a smooth round and be efficient, I didn't want to run her. I knew she would do her part and keep the fences up no matter what, I just had to give her the ride that she needed," explained Keenan.
Although the other competitors tried their hardest to best Keenan's time, she and Zycarla Z could not be beat. Their carefulness in the first round and bold ride in the jump-off proved to be exactly the strategy needed to win the class. The duo received top honors in the High Junior/Amateur Owner Show Jumping Hall of Fame Classic and led the victory gallop around the Dixon Oval. Keenan also took home the second place award aboard Chansonette Farm LLC's Veronieque, with a clear first round and just four faults in the jump off. Coming in third after finishing just nine-tenths of a second over the time allowed during the first round with all the rails in place was Saly Glassman of Gwynedd Valley, PA riding Kindle Hill Affiliates' GK Calluci. Victoria Press and Whisper, an entry owned by Heritage Farm, Inc. of Katonah, NY, were the fastest of the four-faulters. Their time of 79.27 seconds in the first round earned them the fourth place award.
"I am leasing Zycarla Z from Abigail Wexner. The mare had been doing the grand prix classes and a lot of big events with Jeffery Welles. She's a lot of fun, she's really game, and she's trying no matter what. You can put her anywhere and she's very careful. It's nice to have one that you can push a little bit and know that they are going to try and keep the fences up for you," commented Keenan.
Keenan and Zycarla Z were also named Champion of the High Junior/Amateur Owner Jumper division for the first week of the Brandywine Valley Summer Series. In addition, Keenan earned Reserve Championship aboard her own Veronieque. The Show Jumping Hall of Fame Classic Series is designed to give amateur-owner and junior riders an opportunity to compete at higher levels and serves as a proving ground for many riders who aspire to someday represent the United States in international competition. The Series culminates in the Year-End Championships at the Alltech National Horse Show in November.
In the NAL Low Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic, Keenan once again found herself in the winner's circle, this time aboard Chansonette Farm LLC's Zentina B. Krome's course proved to be difficult for many of the competitors throughout the course of the Classic, causing rails and stops for many, but Keenan and Zentina B emerged victorious. The duo was the first to go clear, and their speedy time of 33.636 seconds could not be beat by any of the other three competitors who made it into the jump-off. At the end of the night, Keenan and Zentina B were at the center of the Dixon Oval for their victory snapshot.
No one would ever be able to tell that this was Keenan and Zentina B's first show together by their fast and flawless trips. "Zetina B was really good. I just bought her two weeks ago and this was our first show together and she won all the classes. She's very game. It's fun to have one that you can really go on and try. She has lived up to our expectations and more. It's fun to be able to do those kinds of classes knowing your horse is going to be game. She loves it," commented Keenan.
Taking home the second place honors with two clear rounds and a time of 34.253 was Jolly Mone, owned by Trelawny Farm, LLC out of Bedford, NY, with Alex Matz in the irons. Kindle Hill Affiliates' Capadina and Saly Glassman received the third award for their double clear trips and jump off time of 35.749. Coming in fourth with a clear first round and two unfortunate rails in the jump-off was Lorado 28, a Kindle Hill Affiliates entry also ridden by Saly Glassman.
To round out her clean sweep of both jumper divisions, Keenan received the Championship honors with Zentina B in the Low Junior/Amateur Owner Jumper division. Collecting the Reserve Champion award was Alex Matz and Jolly Mone.
The Brandywine Valley Summer Series will continue tomorrow with the junior riders in the spotlight. Highlights include the Small and Large Junior Hunter divisions, as well as the ASPCA Maclay and Pessoa/USEF Junior Medal. The first week of the Brandywine Valley Summer Series will conclude on Sunday with the $10,000 Johnson Horse Transportation USHJA International Hunter Derby in the Dixon Oval.
For more information about the Brandywine Valley Summer Series, please visit http://brandywinevalleysummerseries.com.
Photo Credit: Lillie Keenan and Zycarla Z won the M&T Bank $5,000 High Junior/Amateur-Owner Show Jumping Hall of Fame Classic at the Brandywine Valley Summer Series. Photo By: Rebecca Walton/PMG.