Mark Bluman (COL) demonstrated his skill and expertise, besting Thursday's tough field of 37 riders at the Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) aboard Thriller P in the $35,000 1.50m Suncast® Welcome CSI3* on the second day of FEI competition at Tryon Summer I. Bluman and Thriller P dominated the complex course design designed by Oscar Soberon (MEX) with an impressive jump-off time of 36.597 seconds.
Taking second place with a speedy and accurate round was Eugenio Garza (MEX) and his ride Empire Van Wuitenshof with a time of 37.142 seconds, while Amanda Derbyshire (GBR) and Lady Maria BH claimed the yellow rosette with a time of 38.023 seconds.
Thriller P is not one of Bluman's usual mounts, as the 2004 Swedish Warmblood stallion (Cardento x Lucky Light) is owned and ridden by Bluman's student, Daniela Stransky. Bluman elaborated on why he took over the reins for the ride today.
"You know it is funny because that horse is not part of my string. He is part of my student's string. We recently purchased him for her, so we decided that I would show him this week," he detailed. "I wanted to make sure he went well in the big ring. Every time he has shown, he has been fantastic. With my students, I always prefer to tune-up their horses and help them to feel incredible."
"Thriller P is one of the greatest horses in the barn," he added.
The tough track asked many questions, yet Bluman and Thriller P exhibited several tidy turns and a deceivingly fast round, delivering the winning answer in the talented class. Bluman elaborated on the athleticism of Thriller P and how he felt the class rode overall.
"In the jump-off, yes I was quick, but on this horse you don't realize how fast you are actually going," Bluman commented. "In Florida, I had a very similar ride on him after WEF, where we also won the class. He covers a lot of ground and is very athletic, which is an unbeatable combination."
Bluman went on to speak of the preparation and accuracy needed to excel in classes such as this, which showcased a talented group of international riders. He stated, "Part of my system at home is to practice a line, but do all different numbers of strides in-between those two jumps. We work on collecting and extending, along with gymnastics to teach the horses that those type of situations can happen at the show. We actually practiced something very similar last week to prepare for the four weeks of the Summer Series here at TIEC. That technique teaches the horses to be soft, adjustable, and careful, which helped him feel incredible today."
Bluman was ecstatic with win, but is already looking forward to Saturday night. He hopes his accomplished mount, Uitteraard, who he has been successful with at TIEC before, will rise to the occasion in the $130,000 Adequan® Grand Prix CSI3*. Bluman spoke about Uitteraard saying, "He is a part of my string and is coming off of a win. I feel very confident and I hope Saturday night goes well!"
Bluman and team now consider themselves locals, training out of a farm only minutes from the show, and will strive to be top contenders at TIEC for the remainder of the Summer Series. They also have plans to return for the 2016 Tryon Fall Series.
Source: Press release from Tryon International Equestrian Center News // Picture © LizCrawleyPhotography
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