Lexington, Ky. – Aug 6, 2021 – World-class jumper competition continued Friday at the Kentucky Summer Classic, attracting competitors to the Rolex Stadium for the Medium Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers. In the single-round speed class, athletes had one chance to showcase their precision and agility. In the end, John Angus and Stephanie Angus’ W. Tonix Hero proved to be a force to reckon with after putting forth the fastest, fault-free round of the afternoon.
Bobby Murphy (USA) built out a challenging 14-obstacle track, with just six horse and rider combinations navigating clear efforts. The early pathfinder of the day was Alexa Elle Lignell and Girl Scout, who quickly worked the long track and stopped the clock at 74.143 seconds, setting the pace for the remainder of the competitors. Despite their finesse and speed, Vanessa Mazzoli and Pumpkin would triumph over Lignelli, with a time of 72.365. As the second to last pair to enter the ring, Anneliese Gattoni piloted Trueholm’s Liva to a clear and prompt round earning them a time of 72.365, putting them into first place with just one rider left to go. However, there was no time for celebration as the final pair entered the ring, John Angus and W. Tonix Hero, who would ultimately secure the win with a swift time of 68.549.
Angus and W. Tonix Hero, a 19-year-old KWPN gelding, have notched several top placings together in the Amateur-Owner Jumpers, most recently placing in the top three at Tryon Spring 6 and placing second in the USHJA Platinum Jumper team final. These two are no strangers to the winner’s circle, demonstrating a solid partnership that continuously propels them to the top of the leaderboard. Angus spoke highly of his partner, emphasizing his love for the job and how he puts his all into each round. The dynamic duo continued their winning ways Friday and turned in a fiery time of 68.549, securing them the blue ribbon.
Vanessa Mazzoli and Pumpkin, an 8-year-old Oldenburg gelding, were on track to claim the blue ribbon with a quick time of 69.669, but would ultimately be overtaken by Angus and W. Tonix Hero by less than one second. Mazzoli recently moved Pumpkin up from the Low Amateur-Owner jumpers, culminating in a win at the Split Rock Hunter Jumper Classic II in the $1,000 1.20m Junior/Amateur-Owner Power and Speed class.
As the second to last pair in the ring, Anneliese Gattoni piloted her own 13-year-old Danish Warmblood mare, Trueholm’s Liva, to a clear round in 72.365 seconds to land just behind Mazzoli on the leaderboard. The pair has found great success since Gattoni took the ride in 2019, with multiple top three placings at the Tryon spring and summer shows.
Jumper competition at the Kentucky Summer Classic will continue Saturday with the $50,000 Hagyard Grand Prix bringing elite show jumping competitors to the Rolex Stadium once again for their shot at the top prize.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
John Angus – 1.30M Medium Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Winner
On his partnership with W. Tonix Hero:
“My mom and I have owned him for close to four years now. His name is W. Tonix Hero, and he is 19-years-old, the same age as me! He gives his all for me, and he is just an amazing horse. A good friend of my mom imported him from Europe, and she was struggling to ride him because he was really strong. So we ended up making a trade with another horse. When we started jumping him, we realized he really loves his job.”
On his strategy for the class:
“I actually had the strategy of going smooth to set it up for tomorrow. But [W. Tonix Hero] thinks faster than a lot of other horses, and he thinks faster than me, so by the time, we landed off of the jumps, he was already booking it to the next jump. So, there wasn’t really much I could do other than just guide him.”
On his future plans:
“I am planning to go to Tryon in the fall and then down to Wellington for the winter circuit.”
1.30m Junior/Amateur-Owner Medium Jumper:
Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults | Time
1. W. Tonix Hero / John Angus / Stephanie Angus / 0 | 68.549
2. Pumpkin / Vanessa Mazzoli / Vanessa Mazzoli / 0 | 69.669
3. Trueholm’s Liva / Anneliese Gattoni / Anneliese Gattoni / 0 | 72.365
4. Girl Scout / Alexa Elle Lignelli / Hampton Green Farms / 0 | 74.143
5. Freedom / Olivia Clayton / Royal Sport Horses / 0 | 75.203
6. Light Show / Izzy Beisel / Diane Masters / 0 | 77.966
7. Inne Van De Plataan / Keely McIntosh / Jenny Booth / 4 | 70.716
8. MTM Checco / Avery Erickson / Avery Erickson / 4 | 73.192
9. Coconut / Trinity Beitler / Nikki Greenburg / 4 | 74,570
10. Inzell B / Alexandria Beneson / Alexandria Beneson / 4 | 76.999