Otomí, the show grounds in San Miguel de Allende, has been coming a favorite for Mexican riders lately. With seven weeks scheduled in 2017, two in February, two in March and one in September, now was the turn for Spring Break.
In the first week Brazilian Guilherme Jorge was the main Course Designer. With new and colorful obstacles the Grand Prix Banco del Bajío was the main attraction with 25 entries, held Saturday afternoon.
Only seven combinations advanced to the jump off, and three would produce a double clear round.
Uruguayan rider Juan M. Luzardo, who is not a stranger to Otomí being a previous winner of the Grand Prix, stop the clock three seconds ahead of
Jaime Azcárraga, who was the leader. Riding Stan (10 Stakkato) flew over the shortened course being almost the last rider getting the green ribbon for first place. Jaime Azcárraga rode Matador to second, and Colombian rider John Perez followed suit to third. With a rail down in the shortened course followed Alejandro Mills, Arturo Posada, Luis Plascencia and Alfredo Ramírez.
On Sunday the Clásico Visa had 44 entries. The last fence was a new designed oxer with Otomi motives and colors. (Otomi is the indigenous population of the region). This last oxer was the main problem for a big number of riders. Eleven, exactly 25%, went clean and advanced to the jump off. Yago Álvarez from Guadalajara felt he was clean and when jumping the last fence a rail come down. His lamenting were heard all the way to the spectator stands, and of course was sidelined from the jump off.
Early in the definitive course Arturo Parada, also from Guadalajara, who is the current Mexican GP Champion, and who placed in the first five the previous day at the Grand Prix, went clean and very fast, riding a son of Cornet Obelensky, a gray stallion eleven year old, to finish in a very fast time of 41.36 seconds, which proved to be enough for the win.
Fifteen year old Daniel Rihan who last month riding in his first Clásico was the surprised winner, left his best horse at home as he is resting him to compete at the CSI2* that will run concurrently with the Global Champion’s Tour next month y Mexico City, but decided to participate with a 8 year old who have never jumped that big. Riding his stallion Desperado crossed the timers in 42.78, good for the second place. Veteran Olympic rider Antonio Maurer finished in third. Seven in total would produce a double clear: after the first three also went clear in the jump off Miguel Torres from San Luis Potosí, Fernando Martínez from Mexico City as well as junior Karime Perez from Guadalajara and Salvador Oñate from Leon.
Five times Olympic Jaime Azcárraga had two horses in the jump off, both new to him and were very impressive: For Fashion (For Pleasure/Oklahoma) and Eye Catcher (Cantos/Ambelina), both good prospects for the future.
A second week is programmed with Leopoldo Palacios taking care of the course designing. In this second week a trial to get the Team for the Central and American Championship will be held. Mexico has to participate at this championship taking place in Guatemala, in order to get the ticket for the Pan-American Games in Lima, so several trials will be taking place to form the Mexican Team for this Championship later in the year.