Megan Edrick Scores a Grand Prix Win and a Fiancé at HITS Ocala

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Ocala, FL - February 13, 2012 - Megan Edrick had a very memorable week at the HITS Ocala Winter Circuit. Not only did the 25-year-old California native get engaged to boyfriend Dr. Larry Wexler, she also beat out 27 starters to capture her first Grand Prix victory of the year aboard Procedures, Inc.’s Cadence in Sunday’s $50,000 Chartis Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health.

Edrick and Cadence have a short, yet special history together. In the summer of 2010, Edrick won her first Grand Prix ever – the $75,000 HITS Grand Prix at HITS-on-the-Hudson, aboard the 11-year-old Swedish Warmblood gelding that Emil Spadone had found for her in Europe not long before. With more than $46,000 and several top finishes together, the duo qualified for and competed in the 2010 Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix, finishing just out of the ribbons in 21st place. In 2011, they took some time off, but have come back strong to win five Grand Prix together in the last four months.

“She’s not really the bragging type, so I’ll tell you that she was terrific this week,” said Don Stewart of Don Stewart Stables in Ocala, Florida and Edrick’s employer for the past five years. “They finished second in Thursday’s Grand Prix and that horse hasn’t dropped a rail all week. I told Megan this was a perfect engagement present to herself!”

Portugal’s Bernardo Cabral set a challenging course for Sunday’s feature class. Edrick and Cadence were seventh in the order and the first to post a fault-free round.

Two trips later, Ragan Roberts of Little Rock, Arkansas rode Quipit Group’s Quipit L.F. to a clean round and joined Edrick for the jump-off. Cabral’s 6a-b combination and triple combination at fence 9 seemed to be the source of trouble for several riders, but in addition to Edrick and Roberts, six others rose to the challenge and advanced to the jump-off.

“In the triple combination in the first round – the one coming in rode nice, but the two got kind of tight,” said Edrick. “The stick to the two to the one was definitely the most challenging. The course was comfortable and the last line, a four stride away from the in-gate, was surprisingly nice. Actually, the whole course was really smooth and rode like an equitation course, which is a good thing since that’s our focus at Don Stewart Stables.”

Edrick was up first in the jump-off and wasted no time. She and Cadence maneuvered the track with ease and set the Great American Time to Beat at 45.44 seconds. The only other rider to go double clear was Derek Petersen of Archer, Florida aboard his own Via Dolorosa. Petersen and his ride finished three-tenths of a second behind Edrick in 45.77 seconds to capture the red ribbon.

After the class Edrick was beaming. “It was a great week for me. I got engaged and won my first GP of the year here. I don’t think I can top that! I can’t thank my support team enough. Emil Spadone and Don Stewart are so amazing. I’m lucky to have their support and couldn’t have done this without them,” she said. “I’ll be here for the rest of the circuit, and with their help my goal is qualify again for the Pfizer Million.”

Edrick and Wexler, who met at HITS Culpeper, have yet to set the date for their big day but hope to do so soon. “My mother is coming in this week, so hopefully we can pick a date soon.”

Rounding out the top five in the class were Callan Solem of Glenmoore, Pennsylvania and Horseshoe Trail Farm, Inc.’s Magic Cruise in third place, Patty Stovel of Chester Springs, Pennsylvania and her own Carigor Z in fourth and Roberts and Quipit L.F. in fifth.

Show jumping continues this week at HITS Ocala with two more Grand Prix qualifiers for the Pfizer Million in Thursday’s $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix and Sunday’s $50,000 HITS Grand Prix, both presented by Pfizer Animal Health. In all, High-Performance riders have 10 more opportunities to qualify and plenty of cash left up for grabs at HITS Ocala this year, including the season finale $100,000 Sullivan GMC Truck Grand Prix, presented by Great American Insurance Group, on Sunday, March 18.

About Chartis
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$50,000 Chartis Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health
Place Horse Owner Rider Prize $ Rd 1 Faults JO Faults JO Time
1 Cadence Procedures, Inc. Megan Edrick $15,000 0 0 45.44
2 Via Dolorosa Derek Petersen Derek Petersen $11,000 0 0 45.77
3 Magic Cruise Horseshoe Trail Farm, Inc. Callan Solem $6,500 0 4 46.83
4 Carigor Z Patty Stovel Patty Stovel $4,000 0 4 48.34
5 Quipit L.F. Quipit Group Ragan Roberts $3,000 0 4 50.12
6 MTM Centano MTM Farm Tracy Fenney $2,500 0 8 45.23
7 Grande Finale 3E Emily Short Emily Short $2,000 0 8 48.09
8 Mad Season Alex Granato Alex Granato $1,500 0 16 55.06
9 Just An Illusion Taylor McMurtry Taylor McMurtry $1,500 1 -  
10 Luke 54 Equi-Sport, LLC Adam Cramer $1,000 2 -  
11 Blue Danube The Goddard Harrison Group Helen Goddard $1,000 4 -  
12 Tibor Bonnie Smith Aaron Vale $1,00 4 -  

Photos: Megan Edrick and Cadence on course in Sunday's $50,000 Chartis Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, at HITS Ocala.  © ESI Photography.
Julie Roddenberry, Heather Sugg and Bill Sugg of Chartis join HITS' Lisa Engel and Caitlin Howley to present the awards to Megan Edrick and Cadence for their victory in Sunday's $50,000 Chartis Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health. Flowers presented to Megan Edrick compliments of Lilli's Flowers & Gifts, HITS Ocala's Official Florist.  © ESI Photography.