The Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows are in the second week of competition and run through Sunday, May 17, at the picturesque Old Salem Farm in North Salem, NY. The shows feature over 130 hunter and jumper classes each week, bringing together top competitors, including Olympic show jumpers, from all corners of the country to compete for more than $500,000 in prize money.
In the first grand prix test from Ireland's Alan Wade during Week 2 at Old Salem Farm, 10 pairs advanced to the jump-off with Ward of Brewster, NY, sitting pretty on two hopeful mounts. "I thought the track was friendly," said Ward. "I am the biggest fan of Alan – he's the best in the world. Overall, the water was presented nicely and it was a nice prep for Sunday."
Carlos broke the timers double clear in 41.284 seconds, and Troya Retiro jumped off last with the class already won for Ward. Their time was 46.686 seconds for the red ribbon.
Ward will pilot both HH Carlos Z and Troya Retiro in Sunday's $100,000 Empire State Grand Prix, presented by The Kincade Group, bringing the veteran and new blood to play for the richest purse of the two-week circuit.
"I know Carlos, and he's one of fastest horses in the sport. He was the one to put the pressure on," said Ward of the 13-year-old Zangersheide gelding who also took top honors in the $5,000 Open Jumper 1.40m at Old Salem Farm last week. “Troya is a new horse I bought at the end of Florida together with my godmother Susan Heller. It was a quick deal – we tried, vetted and put him on the truck in the same day. So far he's really exciting, very careful and a big jumper."
Troya Retiro is a nine-year-old Warmblood gelding that jumped under Colombian colors in the Furusiyya FEI Nations Cup in Ocala this February with Juan Pablo Betancourt in the irons. "He [Juan Pablo] did a very nice job producing the horse and I have just been getting to know him these two weeks, but he's quite a talent."
Both HH Carlos Z and Troya Retiro will head north to Calgary next, where Ward is excited to test the derby talents of his new gelding. "He was great on this open field, and we've schooled the naturals a bit," said Ward on his preparation for the derbies at Spruce Meadows.
Molly Ashe was just fractions slower than Ward and Troya Retiro in 46.865 seconds on Louisburg Farm's Whistler for third. "We got him [Whistler] at the beginning of the Florida circuit and he had some time off for an injury before that," said Ashe of the 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding. "I started him in the schooling jumpers in Florida and did a few 1.45m classes and one 1.50m at the end of the season. Last week was his first time back since WEF. He has all the ability in the world, we just have to keep getting him fit."
Ashe hails from Wellington, FL, but lives only 20 minutes away from Old Salem Farm while she's showing north of Florida and admits it feels like home. "I have been coming here since I was a junior," she said. "We don't jump on fields like this that often anymore – it's a great venue."
Rounding out the top five, Cara Raether Carey and Trelawny Farm, LLC's Winston took fourth in a clear 47.233 seconds, while Quentin Judge and Double H Farm's HH Copin Van De Broy settled for fifth with a rail in 44.514 seconds.
For the win, Ward was presented with an 18k yellow gold earring and necklace set from Karina Brez's Horse LUV Collection. "My wife will be very happy and it's also a little something for Carlos' groom [Kelly Massari]," he said. "He's like a pet to her, and she does a great job with him."
Source: Press release from Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows
1 HH CARLOS Z MCLAIN WARD DOUBLE H FARM 0/0/41.284
2 TROYA RETIRO MCLAIN WARD MCLAIN WARD & SUSAN HELLER 0/0/46.686
3 WHISTLER MOLLY ASHE LOUISBURG FARM 0/0/46.865
4 WINSTON CARA RAETHER CAREY TRELAWNY FARM, LLC 0/0/47.233
5 HH COPIN VAN DE BROY QUENTIN JUDGE DOUBLE H FARM 0/4/44.514
6 VANILLA BEEZIE MADDEN ABIGAIL WEXNER 0/4/45.467
7 REBECA LS BRIANNE GOUTAL REMARKABLE FARMS, LP 0/4/45.740
8 DOREMI BEN ASSELIN LINDA SOUTHERN 0/8/43.502
9 WASHINGTON SQUARE GEORGINA BLOOMBERG GOTHAM ENTERPRIZES, LLC 0/8/44.491
10 QUADAM RICHARD NEAL RICHARD NEAL 0/8/48.151
11 UBRIS SARAH SEGAL CHARWELL 1/87.258
12 CONTIKI NICHOLAS DELLO JOIO WEMBLY FARM, COKER FARM, WATERSHED 1/87.354
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