Temecula, Calif. – April 18, 2019 – Jumping competition resumed Thursday morning at the Temecula Valley National Horse Show (TVNHS) with junior and amateur-owner divisions taking center stage in the Audi Grand Prix Arena, presented by Evergate Stables. For the second year in a row, owner-rider Rachel Torok took to the arena aboard Comanchero M and claimed top honors, this year in the Medium Junior/Amateur-Owner 1.30m Jumpers, which operated as a two-round power and speed class, although competitors could continue following the initial phase regardless of faults.
At the beginning of the class, Katie Abajian took the early lead aboard her own mount Chaccrobat, stopping the clocks in the second round, which immediately followed the first portion, in 37.626 seconds. Abajan held her lead for the majority of the class, until 16-year-old Claire Archer took to the ring determined to take the lead. Archer and her own Fanta Light B shaved over one second off of the leading time to finish in a quick 36.302 seconds.
Unfortunately for Archer, her lead was short-lived as the class’ eventual winners, Rachel Torok aboard Comanchero M, entered the arena. The 18-year-old amateur rider from San Juan Capistrano, California, competed two horses in Thursday’s class, and had the advantage of returning for her second ride aboard Comanchero M. The pair left nothing to chance, picking up a strong pace from the start to navigate a clear power phase in a time of 37.869 seconds. Moving onto the speed phase, Torok shaved over three seconds off of the leading time to put down a clean and speedy effort in 33.932 seconds, securing the top prize for the second consecutive year.
Archer and Fanta Light B would ultimately be awarded second place, while Abajian and Chaccrobat rounded out the top three with the last of the double-clear efforts for the class. Ultimately, the top three pairs were the only partnerships able to master the track and lay down fault-free efforts out of the talented field.
Jumping competition will continue in the Audi Grand Prix Arena, presented by Evergate Stables, Friday at 8:00 am featuring both equitation and jumper competition, including the R.W. Mutch Equitation Championship and the $10,000 Voltaire 1.35m Classic.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Rachel Torok – Medium Junior/Amateur 1.30m Jumpers winner
On winning with Comanchero M:
“It is really nice to come back and win this. I actually took a step down recently because I was injured at HITS Coachella in Thermal, California, so this is our first week back in the 1.30m classes and winning is a big boost! Comanchero M is 10 years old. I have had him for two years and we compete in the 1.30m classes together. I live in San Juan Capistrano in Orange County and I train with Mickey Hayden and Lane Clarke of Hayden Clark Sport Horses.”
On her strategy for the class:
“The plan was to start it off with a lot of pace and treat it like a speed round, but make sure that the lines didn’t get too short. Cheerio [Comanchero M] has a huge stride, so we just decided to start with a gallop and keep it throughout. He is a horse that naturally builds so we just have to make sure things don’t get too short and it all worked out.”
On competing at the Temecula Valley National Premier:
“We came for two weeks last year and although we were not planning to stay for the second week, we changed our plans because of how much we liked the show. The footing is amazing and the staff is amazing and professional. It makes such a difference to be greeted every day with a smile and a handshake. I wish all shows were run like this!”
Medium Junior/Amateur-Owner 1.30m Jumpers
Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults | R1 Time / R2 Faults | R2 Time
1. Comanchero M / Rachel Torok / Rachel Torok / 0 | 37.869 / 0 | 33.932
2. Fanta Light B / Claire Archer / Claire Archer / 0 | 39.749 / 0 | 36.302
3. Chaccrobat / Katie Abajian / Katie Abajian / 0 / 39.426 / 0 | 37.626
4. Taquin Dr La Nutria / Madison Dunham / Madison Dunham / 0 | 35.772 / 4 | 30.180
5. Artiste De La Roque / Estelle Navet / Eric Navet Equestrian / 0 | 36.378 / 4 | 30.180
6. Graf Red Dawn / Jenny Calandra / Jenny Calandra / 0 | 35.340 / 4 | 33.278
7. Eliana / Sarah Abdi / Champion Technology Group / 4 / 35.187 / 4 | 35.612
9. Caipirinha / Nicholas Choi / Nicholas Choi / 0 | 41.030 / 4 | 37.809
10. Figaro M / Clea Caddell / Spy Glass Hill / 0 | 42.507 / 5 | 42.475
11. Siegfried 68 / Quinn Ferreira / Ixchel Mosley / 4 | 39.615 / 8 | 33.065
12. Clavius / Rachel Torok / Rachel Torok / 8 | 38.123 / 12 | 34.460