Lexington, KY - October 20, 2014 - After dominating the Hagyard Challenge Series for the second year in a row, Venezuelan rider Pablo Barrios has captured the $50,000 Hagyard Leading Rider Award. He and his talented mounts earned the winning honors in four of the seven Hagyard Lexington Classic events, which coupled with other top placings, gave Barrios an early lead in the standings that he never relinquished.
"Winning this bonus means a lot in different ways," noted Barrios. "The first is that shows that you have been a consistent rider during all of the shows in Lexington. Also, the money is big help, especially for me because I own a lot of my own horses. There are a lot of expenses starting the year in Wellington and the bonus is a wonderful help, and I am very thankful to Hagyard for sponsoring it."
The Hagyard Challenge Series is a summer-long series of seven show jumping events at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington. Barrios' consistent efforts helped him accumulate 1,420 points, enough to almost double the total of second place finisher Shane Sweetnam of Ireland at 730 points.
New this year though, the Hagyard Challenge Series introduced an additional $10,000 rider bonus for the runner-up. Sweetnam collected the secondary bonus, taking home top ribbons throughout the series and winning the Hagyard Lexington Classic during the Kentucky Summer Classic with Bijzonder.
"Two years ago I won the bigger bonus and I think it's great for the riders because it gives them an extra incentive to compete in those classes and there is a very high standard in those grand prix events," explained Sweetnam. "It's great that they added the secondary bonus this year. It looked like Pablo had it wrapped up halfway through, and it gives the other riders like myself more incentive to keep going."
Hagyard Equine Medical Institute's Dr. Stuart Brown commented, "Once again, Hagyard Equine Medical Institute continues to be honored to support this Series at The Kentucky Horse Park bringing the highest quality of competition in the sport of Grand Prix Jumping to the Bluegrass throughout the summer. Without a doubt, fans and spectators of equestrian competition are able to witness these incredible horses and their riders in one of the nation's most spectacular settings for equestrian sport. We remain grateful to the support of our sponsors as partners in the Leading Rider Award that is a cornerstone for the Hagyard Challenge Series. Also, we appreciate the support of the talented horses and riders who make this Series such a success each season. Congratulations to this year's winners, as well as all the competitors and owners who have been such wonderful patrons in support of this Series. Lastly, we appreciate all the fans and spectators of the sport who follow the Series each year, and Hagyard Equine Medical Institute looks forward to another exciting season of competition in 2015."
Hagyard Equine Medical Institute is one of the oldest and largest equine veterinary practices in the world. Founded in 1876, the institute offers a staff with qualifications unparalleled by any single non-university veterinary group in the equine industry, and Hagyard veterinarians have dedicated themselves to the health and wellbeing of the horse.
The facility at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute offers 13 Digital Radiology systems, 1.5 Tesla Siemens MRI, Nuclear Scintigraphy, a high speed treadmill, an on-site laboratory, an on-site pharmacy, full surgical services, 24-hour emergency services and Hyperbaric Medicine. The institute has practiced veterinary medicine since 1876 and is currently composed of over 50 experienced veterinarians, with 13 board certifications in specialty areas of Medicine, Surgery, Critical Care, and Theriogenology.
Several generous sponsors have helped make this exciting series event happen. These gracious supporters include: title sponsor MWI Veterinary Supply, and presenting sponsor Zoetis, as well as Audi of Lexington, Dean Dorton Allen Ford, Hagyard Pharmacy, Johnson Horse Transport, Hallway Feeds, Pike and Preston, and Stoll Keenon Ogden.
For more information about the Hagyard Equine Medical Institute please visit http://hagyard.com.
For more information about the Kentucky Horse Shows, please visit http://www.kentuckyhorseshows.com/.