Lexington, Ky. – Aug 1, 2021 – Show jumping focus shifted to amateur-owner and junior show jumping competitors in the Rolex Stadium at the Kentucky Summer Horse Show Sunday afternoon. The Show Jumping Hall of Fame (SJHOF) Classics took center stage in the arena to wrap up the week’s competition. In the end, it was Reid Arani and Freetown who claimed the victory in the SJHOF High Junior Jumper Classic, sponsored by Johnson Horse Transportation. Kathryn Hall and All In 9 nabbed top prize in the SJHOF High Jumper Classic, sponsored by Audi of Lexington.
Anderson Lima (BRA) set a technical track for the two highlight events of the day with four entries advancing to the jump-off to compete for a spot atop the leaderboard in the SJHOF High Junior Jumper Classic to kick off the afternoon. Carlee McCutcheon riding her own MTM Unexpected was the first rider to advance to jump-off, opting to use speed to try and leave the remaining riders to catch her, but it came at the cost of a single rail as they stopped the clock at 45.770 seconds with 4-faults, which would be good enough for third place.
Daughter of Saturday night’s $50,000 Rood & Riddle Grand Prix winner David Beisel, Izzy Beisel was next to tackle the track with her father’s former grand prix partner Ammeretto. They managed to best McCutcheon’s time, but lowered the height of the penultimate fence for 4 faults and second place in a time of 44.986 seconds.
It was not until the last round that a winner was named. Arani seized the division on her second ride of the day, using the experience from her first go-around to pilot Islay Jumpers LLC’s Freetown, an 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, to the only double clear. With no other riders left to compete, Arani knew that if she left all the fences intact she could have a more conservative pace and still claim the win. Her plan paid off as she crossed the finish line in 47.591 seconds with all the rails in place to lead the lap of honor.
Immediately following, the amateur-owner competitors rode into the Rolex Stadium for their shot at the top spot in the SJHOF High Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic, riding over the same 12-obstacle course. Versailles, Kentucky native Kathryn Hall was eager for her second big win of the week on home turf. Hall pulled off the feat as first to go in the ring, navigating the course aboard her 13-year-old Holsteiner mare, All In 9, for a brisk and clean jump-off effort to stop the clock in an impressive 47.517 seconds.
None of the competitors to follow could deliver a nimble enough round to take over Hall’s lead, ultimately lending the pair the blue ribbon. The only other rider to qualify for the jump-off was Alexis Sokolov with Hot Horses LLC’s Cana Van De Blom, managing a more conservative but clear 50.648 second effort for second place. Avery Erickson rode her own Chacco Lait had the fastest 4 fault effort in a time of 80.163 seconds to round out the top three.
Show jumping action will return to the Kentucky Horse Park’s Rolex Stadium on Tuesday for the Kentucky Summer Classic. Highlight events of the week will include Thursday’s $25,000 Kentucky Summer Classic and Saturday’s $50,000 Grand Prix.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Reid Arani – High Junior Jumper Classic winner
“He’s actually pretty new. He’s one of the most recent horses I’ve gotten out of the three I showed this week. He’s always super excited to go into the ring. His ears are always up and he’s looking around. In the schooling area he gets a little excited being around other horses, but I think that helps him in the ring to get him fired up. He’s so sweet. He loves kisses and snuggles and everything.”
On second round:
“Obviously the second time around you know a little bit more about the course. For my first horse I was first in the ring, so I wasn’t able to watch anyone. The second line – with seven strides through the middle – we discussed it being an even seven strides. I got a little long in that line on my first ride, so I was kind of able to fix it on Freetown and get there a little earlier and protect the front rail so that it wasn’t as low. Obviously, I didn’t do the jump off on the first horse. I didn’t get to practice that, but I think that [Freetown] was just so smooth in the first round and I learned from my first round, which helped. I could leave out strides and be a little more confident. The first time around I was a little more conservative with my strides.”
On riding in the Kentucky Summer Horse Show:
“I love it. I’ve been coming here my whole life. We actually have a farm here. It’s always great and always so much fun. The competition is always great. My sister and I ride hunters and jumpers. The courses have been fine. They’re not too easy, but not too difficult. I love being able to be back and just being around here. The day has been going really chill and it’s not too hectic here.”
On their plans for the rest of the season/summer:
“Next week I will show my two high horses and then I have young riders in Michigan. I’ll keep these horses going through the winter at WEF. I’m going to college, so we’ll see if I’ll be able to come back and keep riding at this level.”
Kathryn Hall – High Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic winner
On All In 9:
“I’ve had her for about three years, so we’ve had enough time to get to know each other. I’m super confident on her. I’m just happy we had a successful week. She’s a Holsteiner mare, and she just turned 13. She had some experience in Europe before I got her, and was really successful in the High Juniors with Daisy Farish. She’s always ready to win, she’s just waiting for me to catch up! I’m happy we made it happen today.”
On Lima’s course:
“I thought it was a good course. The jump off was a little bit more of a foot race than I’m used to, so it was somewhat of a gamble. The first rollback and the inside turn gave the chance to be a bit faster, and the end of the course was mostly up to striding. I added in a couple places but I think it helped smooth the turns.”
On riding in the Kentucky Summer Horse Show:
“I’ve been coming here for 10 years now, so I’ve gotten to know the place really well and all the rings. I’m really comfortable here, and happy to keep coming back.”
On her future plans:
“After Young Riders, we will probably come back to [the Kentucky Horse Park] for the rest of the summer. This is our home base. I think we will do the Bluegrass Festival Horse Show in August, then get ready for the indoor season.”