Bridgehampton, N.Y. - Lucy Deslauriers, of Southampton, N.Y., defeated three rivals to win the jump-off of the $25,000 Campbell Stables Show Jumping Derby. Her faultless round, in 39.66 seconds, bested Kaely Tomeu on Fidalgo Van Het Leliehof (0 faults/41.44 seconds) and Philip Richter on Pistoya (4 faults/39.06 seconds).
Victory in the Show Jumping Derby was meaningful for Deslauriers, 16, and not only because she lives close by. In addition, her mother, Lisa, is the chairperson the Hampton Classic Board of Directors, and her father, Mario, has ridden on Olympic show jumping teams for Canada and the United States.
"This definitely has a special meaning to be able to win," said Deslauriers. "I've been coming here longer than I can remember, and it's one of my favorite shows all year, not only because I can stay at home in my own bed, and because it's right around the corner, but it also feels like a really, really special place."
Only four of the 23 Show Jumping Derby starters reached the jump-off with a faultless first round. Three riders didn't complete the demanding first round, and eight more incurred double-digit penalties.
"I think there were a lot of different challenges, especially with the bank and the hedge. And the time allowed was really tight, so you definitely had to put on the speed and watch the jumps at the same time. I think that putting the two together caught a lot of people," said Deslauriers, who in July won the individual gold medal at the North American Young Riders Championships with Hester.
In the jump-off, Richter and fourth-placed Sophie Simpson, on Why Not, lowered the same jump, the fourth element of the jump-off course, which wound back and forth across the Grand Prix Field. Then Tomeu jumped faultlessly in a time slower than Richter or Simpson.
Deslauriers said she knew what he needed to do to win the blue ribbon. "I knew if I stayed tall to that vertical, my horse would try his best. And he did just that," she said.
Deslauriers has owned Hester for three years, and she took him over from her father. "He's really been a dream ever since I started to ride him. I've competed him in many different places. He's super-brave and always willing to do anything I ask of him," she said.
Further information on the Hampton Classic Horse Show is available at the Hampton Classic website at www.hamptonclassic.com