Wellington, Fla. – Feb. 3, 2018 – Saturday featured the $25,000 Upperville Colt & Horse Show at the 2018 CP Palm Beach Masters, where the class sponsor’s president, Michael Smith, was on hand to present the trophy.
If there is anyone who can rise to the occasion and win a class with a horse he only started riding two weeks ago, without walking the course or seeing any riders go before him, it is undoubtedly McLain Ward of the United States.
Ward is no stranger to the winner’s circle at the third annual Palm Beach Masters, as he managed to also capture victories in the $35,000 CP Welcome Stake CSI3* aboard Hija Van Strokapelleken on Thursday and the $15,000 1.35m Jumpers aboard Belle Fleur Ps Z on Friday.
Currently ranked third in the world on the Longines Rankings, Ward piloted Cerise to the top of the scoreboard in the first section of the $25,000 Upperville Colt & Horse Show 1.40m Jumpers out of 46 entries against the backdrop of the stunning Deeridge Farms venue in Wellington, Florida.
The mare is owned by one of Ward’s long-time friends and owners, Debbie Dolan-Sweeney of Sagamore Farms based in Oyster Bay, New York. Sweeney is also the owner of the infamous Rothchild, one of Ward’s partners with whom he has had tremendous success with including team bronze and individual gold at the Pan American Games in Toronto in 2015 and an individual fourth place finish at the World Equestrian Games in Normandy, France, in 2014.
Ward and Cerise, a 2008 Belgian Warmblood, tackled the challenging track, designed by Ireland’s Alan Wade on the breathtaking grass Grand Prix Ring. The duo left all of the fences intact, advancing them to the 10-horse jump-off. While Ward was unable to walk the course, it didn’t stop him from adding another win to his name at the 2018 Palm Beach Masters.
Ward set the pace to beat over the short course in 34.703 seconds, and no one could manage to outdo his quick performance. Beat Mandli (SUI) rode to second place behind Ward with Grant Road Partners LLC’s Dibatsja, clocking in at 36.817 seconds, while Taylor Land (USA) rounded out the top three aboard Pinetree Farms Inc.’s Liroy 30, finishing up in 37.049 seconds.
The second section of the $25,000 Upperville Colt & Horse Show 1.40m Jumpers boasted 35 entries, but it was Molly Ashe-Cawley (USA) and Picobello Choppin Pc who led the class and rode away with top honors. In second place was Georgina Bloomberg (USA) and Paolo 233, while the third place ribbon was won by Ilan Bluman (COL) on Eliana.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
McLain Ward – $25,000 Upperville Colt & Horse Show 1.40m Jumpers Section A winner
“I have only been riding Cerise for about two weeks. She had a nice result at WEF a couple of weeks ago and this is the second show I’ve ridden her at. She’s really careful and genuine in her character. I didn’t get a chance to walk or see how anybody went so it was a little bit by the seat of my pants, but sometimes that works out.”
On his plans for Cerise going forward:
“I think she’s a really nice mare so I’m looking forward to some nice future classes with her.”
Michael Smith – Upperville Colt & Horse Show president
On the Upperville Colt & Horse Show’s partnership with the Palm Beach Masters:
“Last year was our first year sponsoring the Palm Beach Masters. We have a joint reciprocation with them as our national grand prix sponsor. I have been friends with Lou Jacobs and the Jacobs family since we were teenagers. I was really happy the first year when I came and I saw the show. The event is a class act. It’s just like the Upperville Colt & Horse Show. It is done first class with lots of great hospitality so it was a good fit for us to co-sponsor. I’m really happy to be here.”
Looking ahead to the 2018 Upperville Colt & Horse Show:
“The schedule is the same, but it has been reorganized a little bit. We had a sell-out last year with an 85-stall waiting list so it’s very important for trainers and riders to get their entries in on time. It’s become very popular and I’m really excited about it!”
On presenting Saturday’s award to McLain Ward:
“McLain told me last night that he is planning to come to Upperville this year so it really means a lot for him to win today’s class. It was great to be able to give him the trophy today.”
$25,000 Upperville Colt & Horse Show Exhibition 1.40m – Section 1
Place / Horse / Rider / Faults | Time
1. Cerise / McLain Ward / 0 / 0 | 34.703
2. Dibatsja / Beat Mändli / 0 / 0 | 36.817
3. Liroy 30 / Taylor Land / 0 / 0 | 37.049
4. VDL Elliot / Alejandro Karolyi / 0 / 0 | 40.125
5. Bon Brown / Nunil Castro / 0 / 0 | 40.189
6. Caracho 14 / Lucy Davis / 0 / 3 | 46.055
7. Jeckle / Rodrigo Carrasco / 0 / 4 | 41.227
8. Dundee / Richard Mc Grath / 0 / 4 | 43.035
9. Sambuka De Lurberri / Teri Kessler / 0 / 8 | 37.514
10. Charlie / Samantha Kasowitz / 0 – eliminated
11. Ehreno / Lucianna Gonzalez / 4 | 72.984
12. Flo / Leslie Howard / 4 | 74.081
For full results from Section 1, click here.
$25,000 Upperville Colt & Horse Show Exhibition 1.40m – Section 2
Place / Horse / Rider / Faults | Time
1. Picobello Choppin PC / Molly Ashe / 0 / 0 | 35.487
2. Paola 233 / Georgina Bloomberg / 0 / 0 | 35.848
3. Eliana / Ilan Bluman / 0 / 0 | 37.920
4. Cheri De Papignies / Peter Lutz / 0 / 0 | 37.974
5. Darry Lou / Elizabeth Madden / 0 / 0 | 38.401
6. Fanta Light B / Abigail McArdle / 0 / 0 | 38.505
7. Darling / Ainsley Vince / 0 / 0 | 40.661
8. Costa Rica VH Waterschoot Z / Sloan Hopson / 0 / 8 | 41.670
9. Alberto II / Daisy Farish / 0 / 11 | 50.742
10. Farrel / Daniel Coyle / 1 | 78.180
11. Charlotta 25 / Lucianna Gonzalez / 4 | 73.468
12. Caldero / Elizabeth Madden / 4 | 74.829
For full results from Section 2, click here.