|Mavis Spencer Triumphs in Open Jumpers 1.40m at Kentucky Summer Horse Show|
|Written by Lauren Baker|
|Saturday, 30 July 2016 12:01|
Despite being her first show with Disco Lady, Mavis Spencer made winning look easy as she piloted the 8-year-old mare to victory in the Open Jumpers 1.40m on Friday at the Kentucky Summer Horse Show.
“I think Disco Lady is a super mare,” Spencer said. “She’s so talented, she’s so scopey and so brave and careful. I think she’s everything you would want; she has all the good qualities you want to have in a top horse.”
Spencer and Disco Lady were clear over the first eight fences in the power and speed class to advanced to the speed portion, which they completed in a quick 33.483 seconds.
“I ended up doing 7 strides after the double where a lot of people had done 8, just because I know she’s so careful,” Spencer said. “She’s got such a big step as well, so I can kind of gallop up and challenge her a little bit to the fences and she jumps better for it. It all worked out well today; it was a good course for her.”
Spencer said she got the ride on the Neil Jones Equestrian entry last fall after George Whitaker and Denise Wilson had been showing the mare.
“Tim Collins bred her, and she’s owned by team Collins Strijk and Alfons de Vrindt, so she’s been going through their program,” Spencer explained. “I think it’s very nice for them to have bred her themselves and brought her along and now for her to start the big classes and be successful.”
The early leaders in the class, Shane Sweetnam and Sweet Oak Farm’s Cantero Da Lagoa, clocked a time of 34.194 seconds. Their time held the lead for the majority of the class until Spencer overtook them, leaving Sweetnam to settle for second. Third place went to Spencer Smith, who tripped the timers in 35.133 seconds with Azibantos.
Earlier in the day, the High Amateur Owner/Junior Jumper division took the stage in the Rolex arena. Emma Wujek and her own Ugaf took home the win with their effective round, going double clear and stopping the clock in 59.377 seconds.
Just a second behind the leading time, Benjamin Simpkins and Grindstone Farm LLC’s Vivaro B finished in second place with their time of 60.94 seconds. Third place went to Adrienne Sternlicht and Starlight Farms 1 LLC’s Helios and their time of 63.031 seconds.
Following shorty after, the Open Jumpers 1.35m got underway, and it was Manuel Lecuona and Golden Point Partners LLC’s Figaro D who bested the field to earn the blue ribbon.
Lecuona and Figaro D completed Alan Wade’s jump-off track in just 29.37 seconds, securing their lead by more than two seconds. Second place went to Blythe Marano, who completed the course in 35.518 seconds with Riverview Farm LLC’s Balade Du Ry Z.
“Alan [Wade] knows what he’s doing, and he makes us ride better and get a little bit more sharp,” Lecuona said. “You have to be precise, and I think that’s good. The horses learn so much. Figaro D is a very competitive horse. He goes in the ring and he wants to jump for you. I’m really happy with him because he always tries his best.”
Lecuona, who is based on a farm in Lexington for the summer, said he loves being located so close to the Kentucky Horse Park.
“The facility is great, the horsemen are great,” Lecuona explained. “We rent a farm here, and we have the turnout that the horses love. In Kentucky they can be horses again and go out and be happy. You feel it, too, when they start feeling happy and jumping really well.”
Upcoming highlights during the Kentucky Summer Horse Shows include the $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby, the $10,000 Under 25 Grand Prix, the $25,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic, and $50,000 Rood & Riddle Kentucky Grand Prix.