Wellington, Fla. — Jan. 16, 2019 — The second week of the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) kicked off on Wednesday, January 16, in the International Arena at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center with a win for Ireland’s Darragh Kenny aboard Billy Dorito. The pair went early in the lineup and held the lead all the way through in the $8,000 Douglas Elliman 1.45m Open Jumper class to capture the victory.
Kenny and the 9-year-old bay Anglo European Studbook gelding (Billy Mexico x Vechta) were previously successful during Week 1 of WEF when they bested a field of 68 competitors to take the blue in the $6,000 Bainbridge 1.40m Speed Challenge. The Vlock Show Stables, LLC’s gelding returned as quick and careful as he was in Week 1 and shaved just under one second off the time to maintain the lead over the Oscar Soberon (MEX) designed course, finishing in 26.111 seconds.
Laura Chapot (USA) and the 12-year-old Anglo-European mare, Out of Ireland, were the only pair to closely contest Kenny’s time and maintain no faults. The duo gave their best effort across the field and ultimately just missed Kenny’s time to finish on 26.998 seconds. Third place went to Wilhelm Genn (GER) on Eduardo Leon’s Dirocco Blue, who had two faults in 29.382 seconds.
Kenny credits the pair’s victories to the talent of the young horse and says he looks forward to continuing to work with him to prepare him for owner Teddy Vlock to take over the ride. “He’s very quick across the ground and super careful so it is easy to go fast with him,” he explained. “I think he’s going to be a really special horse; he’s very competitive so I’m interested to see how the future goes for him.”
Competition in the International Arena will continue Thursday, January 17, featuring the second round of the FEI $36,000 Equinimity WEF Challenge Cup. WEF continues with 12 consecutive weeks of world-class competition through March 31, 2019. The second week of competition at WEF is sponsored by NetJets and features the $72,000 NetJets Grand Prix CSI2* during “Saturday Night Lights” on January 12 at 7 p.m. in the International Arena. The week will also host a variety of other FEI-rated two-star events in jumper divisions, along with top hunter and jumper competition.
$8,000 Douglas Elliman 1.45m Open Jumper
Place / Horse / Rider / Country / R1 Faults / R2 Faults | Time
1. Billy Dorito / Darragh Kenny / IRL / 0 / 0 | 26.111
2. Out Of Ireland / Laura Chapot / USA / 0 / 0 | 26.998
3. Dirocco Blue / Wilhelm Genn / GER / 2 / 0 | 29.382
4. Dorado / Darrin Dlin / CAN / 2 / 0 | 31.514
5. Bugatti / Wilhelm Genn / GER / 2 / 0 | 32.318
6. Tienna / Daniel Coyle / IRL / 0 / 4 | 28.862
7. Balou 660 / Vasco Flores / PUR / 5 / 0 | 31.695
8. Ypsilon / Shannon Hicks / USA / 2 / 4 | 31.515
9. Caesar Z / Jaclyn Duff / CAN / 8 / 0 | 32.728
10. Cessna 24 / Georgina Bloomberg / USA / 5 / 8 | 32.273
11. Tiramisu / Trapp O’Neal / USA / 5 / 12 | 31.100
12. Isaura / Diego Vivero / 8 / 12 | 41.091