Tryon Fall Horse Trials: Boyd Martin Aces Advanced

Wednesday, September 15, 2021
Posted by Sarah Madden and Emily Carpenter for TIEC


Cover - Martin-WabanakiBR21brinkman9-12x2sb-14178.jpg

Boyd Martin (Cochranville, PA) and Wabanaki conquered the White Oak Cross-Country Course to win the Advanced A Division at the Tryon Fall Horse Trials at Tryon International Equestrian Center & Resort (TIEC) with a final score of 47.3. Sitting fourth after the Dressage and Show Jumping phases, Martin stepped up to the occasion and put in the fastest Cross-Country round of the day to add only 7.2 time penalties and take the win. Wrapping up her weekend in second place with a final score of 51.1 was Lillian Heard (Cochranville, PA) and Dasset Olympus, the 2013 Irish Sport Horse gelding owned by Debbie Greenspan. Third place honors were awarded to Lucienne Bellissimo (Wellington, FL) and Atlantic Vital Spark, the 2010 Irish Sport Horse gelding owned by Horse Scout Eventing LLC with a  score of 51.6.

Photo - Boyd Martin and Wabanaki (©Shannon Brinkman Photography)

Martin, who topped the competition aboard Wabanaki, the 2011 Hanoverian gelding owned by The Dawnland Syndicate, began on top after a Dressage test that earned the duo a score of 32.1. Though the tough competition proved to be no big deal for Wabanaki, Martin shared that his mount is still new to the Advanced division: “It’s his third crack at the level. He was absolutely fantastic for where he is in his training. He still needs to grow, learn and get more seasoned. Tryon put on a spectacular event. Obviously, it was a difficult and tough competition, but it was a great learning experience for the young ones.”

Martin galloped to a time of 6:43 seconds in the Cross-Country phase of the competition, over ten seconds ahead of Heard’s time of 6:54 seconds. The White Oak Cross-Country Course with tracks set by Captain Mark Phillips (GBR) offered Martin the perfect number of challenges, while still building Wabanaki’s confidence. Martin commented, “There were a lot of difficult combinations followed by easier fences. It was good for the young ones to have a tough question and then nice and easy ones to keep them confident.

Hats off to Tryon

Lillian Heard and Dasset Olympus
Lillian Heard and Dasset Olympus (Photo: ©Shannon Brinkman Photography)

“Hats off to Tryon, because the footing feels like the golf course it is. The footing out there is spectacular,” Martin emphasized. “I love Tryon and everything about it. The venue is world class from the Dressage rings to jumping under the lights last night in front of the crowd. There’s great stabling. The Cross-Country course takes a bit of riding because it used to be a golf course, so it has those mounds and dips, which is good practice,” Martin relayed. “Tryon has been unbelievable with the irrigation system. Walking out on the course, the grass was all spongey, which the horses love.”

Heading into a busy and high-caliber lineup of competitions ahead, including the Tryon International Three-Day Event hosted at TIEC November 10-14, Martin feels satisfied with his choice to prepare for the next few competitions on his calendar by attending the Tryon Fall Horse Trials. “Eventing this time of year is grand,” he concluded. “It’s just premier event after premier event.”

Prep for the Future

After the Jumping phase, Will Faudree and PFun held the top spot before withdrawing from the competition, also sitting in sixth with Mama’s Magic Way. Faudree explained that like Martin, he’s using the Tryon Fall Horse Trials to prepare for upcoming competitions, and chose to hone in on the Dressage and Jumping phases. “I’m using this event for a little prep for these two horses, since they’re both headed to the Maryland 5*. PFun had a little minor setback this spring, but he’s back in really good form, and I was happy with him in both phases,” Faudree reported. “Mason [Mama’s Magic Way] is a little wild, but he stepped up. Parts of his tests were excellent, and it’s a work in progress, since he’s still very young. He’s just ten, but he’s a very young ten!

“Tonight with the show jumping, It’s really great to jump under the lights! It was a really good course, very technical, with tricky lines. I mean, a squirrel could jump PFun clean – he’s just the most fun horse, no pun intended! He just had fun tonight, and he loved the crowd and atmosphere. My other horse, he’s much easier after he runs cross country, he’s a proper three-day horse! I was very happy with both of them.