|Jenny Karazissis and Puissance R Lead USHJA Pre-Green Incentive Championship at Bluegrass Festival Horse Show|
|Written by Lauren Baker|
|Wednesday, 17 August 2016 10:33|
For Jenny Karazissis, making the journey to Kentucky from Calabasas, California has already proven to be worthwhile. Karazissis and Puissance R bested a field of 132 top-caliber entries to win round one of the 2016 USHJA Pre-Green Incentive Championship at the Bluegrass Festival Horse Show on Tuesday.
Going later in the order, Karazissis unseated Scott Stewart and Storm Watch from the top spot, taking over his score of 261.5 points with her score of 262.5 points. The course provided the riders with an option from fence one to two, with two lines available to choose from.
“I really loved the fact that the course designer gave us the option of left or right lead to the first fence,” Karazissis said. “I chose the left-lead option. I knew immediately, and I never doubted that option. Pui is very brave with the jumps, so I knew that was not going to be a problem. I went in there very confidently with my plan, and the whole way around she gave me her all.”
After arriving on Saturday, Karazissis said she rode Puissance R, or Pui, as she’s called, on Monday and knew she was ready to shine in the ring.
“When we schooled in the Walnut yesterday, I jumped maybe three or four jumps, and I felt like I just shouldn’t do anymore because Pui just felt so good and ready,” Karazissis explained. “Today was the same thing in the warm up. She just jumped like four or five jumps beautifully, and I said, ‘you know what, she couldn’t be any more ready.’”
This year marks Karazissis’ first time back showing in Kentucky since 2007.
“I showed in the inaugural [USHJA International Hunter] Derby Finals in 2007, and I have not been back to show myself since,” Karazissis said. “I’ve been here with students showing at Maclay Finals a couple times, but I haven’t shown since then. And I haven’t done the Pre-Green Incentive, so this was really a new experience for me.”
Karazissis said she got the ride on the 10-year-old mare last year when her owner, Lisa Hankin, moved from New York to California. When Hankin found the mare at 6 years old, she was doing dressage.
Hankin explained that she had another horse, Madison Avenue, by the same sire who she absolutely loved, and was interested in buying a younger version of him, which led her to Pui.
“Jenny has been riding her ever since she’s been at Far West Farms,” Hankin said. “They’ve built a beautiful partnership. Pui has been more than I ever could have dreamed, but it never would have happened without Jenny. I’m so happy. Pui is going to get the entire box of Mrs. Pasture’s cookies when she gets back to her stall!”
Karazissis echoed Hankin’s love for the mare, saying, “The very first time I sat on her I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, I just love her.’ She just gives you the best feeling. I actually have goose bumps just thinking about it. She’s lovely. She’s a chestnut mare, and she proves me wrong every day with that myth or stereotype.”
Heading into Wednesday, Karazissis holds the lead, while Stewart and Storm Watch are tied for second place with Kristy Herrera and Helen Lenahan’s Girl Crush. For Wednesday’s final round, Karazissis said she will be focusing on letting Pui do her job.
“Pui is ready,” Karazissis stated. “I just have to be careful to not get in her way and overdo it.”
The Bluegrass Festival Horse Show will resume on Wednesday with round two of the USHJA Pre-Green Incentive Championship. Other highlight events include the 2016 USHJA International Hunter Derby Championship, which will take place over the course of two days, and the $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby. Jumper highlights include the $25,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic, and the $40,000 Bluegrass Festival Grand Prix, sponsored by Audi of Lexington. For more information please visit KentuckyHorseShows.com.
|Last Updated on Wednesday, 17 August 2016 10:37|