East Dorset, VT – Courtney Boyd of Wellington, FL, riding Eye Spy won the First Year Green Hunter Championship title on Thursday, August 5, during the fifth of six weeks of competition at the Vermont Summer Festival at Harold Beebe Farm in East Dorset, VT.
Boyd and Eye Spy, an eight-year-old Holsteiner gelding owned by Allison Scott, completed all five classes comprising the First Year Green Hunter division, earning two first place ribbons, two second place ribbons and a fourth place finish. Those impressive finishes gave the pair the points necessary to walk away with the Championship title.
The Artful Dodger, ridden by Kristen Newton, claimed top honors in the Second Year Green Hunter division with three blue ribbons, a second and a third place. Having already garnered ribbons for owner Kaela PaternosterSouth Glastonbury, CT, at shows such as Ocala, Saratoga and Devon, Newton and the nine-year-old gelding can add Vermont to their ever-growing list of accomplishments.
Charlotte Jacobs, 14, of East Aurora, NY, continued to turn in winning performances in Vermont. Jacobs won the jumper phase and placed third in the hunter phase to claim the overall WIHS Equitation title riding Cortes Z. Jacobs hopes to compete at the WIHS Equitation Classic, held at the prestigious Washington International Horse Show at the end of October.
Rain did put a damper on the day’s competition. As competitors and trainers ran for cover, the ring crew, led by course designer Eric Hasbrouck, went to work preparing the course for Friday’s featured event, the $10,000 Five Seasons/Lily Pulitzer Open Welcome Stake, presented by Manchester Designer Outlets.
Hasbrouck has competed successfully on the nation’s top show jumping circuit for nearly three decades. He has won several major Grand Prix events in the United States and has represented his country internationally, including at the 1998 World Equestrian Games in Rome, Italy. Additionally, Hasbrouck has served on the Selection Committee for the U. S. Olympic Show Jumping Team. In 2008, he acted as chef d'equipe for the U.S. Team competing in Nations’ Cup events in Dublin, Ireland, and Lummen, Belgium. He is also a member of the organizing committee for the Syracuse International Sport Horse Tournament.
“In general, my philosophy is to make it as smooth as possible,” said Hasbrouck of his course design style. “It is nice to have things flow along and not necessarily be a related distance. You can feel like a pinball machine sometimes. Everyone has their own style and I, as a rider, like it when things are smooth. That doesn’t mean that they have to be easy, you can make it very difficult to go clear; a couple of difficult fences, a tighter time allowed, more gymnastic type distances. Making the difficulties more technical while still allowing the course to flow is my goal.”
Competitors in the grand prix ring will be testing their mettle against Hasbrouck’s courses for the remainder of week five at the Vermont Summer Festival, including in the $30,000 Manchester and the Mountains Grand Prix, beginning at 1 p.m. on Sunday, August 8.
Located at Harold Beebe Farm in East Dorset, admission is $5 for adults and $3 for children Wednesday through Saturday. On Grand Prix Sunday, admission is $7 for adults and $5 for children. All gate proceeds benefit Manchester Elementary-Middle School (MEMS).
Running July 7 through August 15, 2010, the Vermont Summer Festival offers more than $750,000 in prize money, making it the richest sporting event based on purse in the state. The six-week Vermont Summer Festival culminates with the $50,000 Vermont Summer Celebration Grand Prix on Sunday, August 15. The Vermont Summer Festival is a proud member event of the Show Jumping Hall Of Fame, the Marshall & Sterling League, and the North American League (NAL). For more information about the Vermont Summer Festival, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.vt-summerfestival.com.
Photo: Courtney Boyd and Eye Spy won the First Year Green Hunter Championship on Thursday, August 5, at the Vermont Summer Festival in East Dorset, VT. Photo credit - David Mullinix Photography