Equestrian Sport Productions (ESP) held its Year End Awards Horse Show on December 8-9, 2012 at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL. The show held a $10,000 Welcome Stake as well as a $25,000 Grand Prix as feature events in the International Arena over the weekend with Pierre Jolicoeur as the course designer. Along with a regular week of showing, the ESP Year End Awards, sponsored by The Tackeria, were handed out at a banquet and honored those top performers from ESP shows throughout 2012.
In the $25,000 Year End Awards Grand Prix, 26 entries showed and just two cleared the first round course without fault to make a jump-off. Donald Cheska and Windswept Farm's Imprimis had one rail down in the short course in 41.980 seconds to earn the second place honors. Gemma Paternoster was the winner aboard Osiris, who she owns in partnership with Julia Harrison Lee, with a clear round but one time fault in the jump-off in 48.708 seconds.
Osiris is a sixteen-year-old gelding by Polydox x Lucky Boy that Paternoster has been riding eleven years. The pair showed in Wellington all summer, winning a grand prix in June and earning many top placings.
"Since WEF last year he has had one rail and he has jumped a multitude of classes," Paternoster stated. "He won the June grand prix and he was double clean in all of those welcome stakes over the summer. There are very few horses I have ever met that love the sport so much and he does. He can't get enough."
Speaking about the course, Paternoster described, "Judging by the scores it was a hard course. It was technical. You needed a very careful horse and an obedient one. He is not always the most rideable horse because he is a little hot, but he is so careful he makes up for it. They put the water back in this week, which was a nice test. The triple bar to the plank was hard. The horses had to be smart on their own. You couldn't really do much for them in there. They had to see the plank and rock back and jump out. I think it was a hard test today."
"I jumped my young horse too, she was seventh and she jumped fabulous," Paternoster added. "I am so excited because they are almost ready to switch over so that Osiris can just chill a bit more and she can come up the ranks."
"He'll do what he tells me he is comfortable doing," she said. "He has done all the World Cup classes at WEF, he has ribboned in the $500,000, the $250,000, he has done it all, so I don't want to hold a ton of pressure on him. He has done ten Nations Cups all over the world. I am so happy that he gets to do this and win and get to be the mega-star in the barn. It is really nice for Julia Harrison Lee who owns half of him because he represents our stables and he is really a good example of what we try to do to produce a horse and make them happy and make them love the sport and perform well because of it. He is a fabulous representation for us and we are lucky to have him."
There were several entries with time faults that kept them from the jump-off, but still placed in the top of the class. Amanda Derbyshire and Attack II, owned by Becky and David Gochman, had one time fault in the first round in 84.062 seconds to place third. Filip Amram and Cederick had one time fault in 84.660 seconds to finish fourth. David Blake and Pine Hollow Farm's Shalimar had two time faults in 85.969 seconds for fifth place honors.
In the $10,000 Wellington Equestrian Realty Welcome Stake, Darragh Kerins rode Elegance Van't Paradijs, owned by Andrea Van Scheltinga, to victory. Twenty-seven entries showed and seven made it to the jump-off. Kerins and Elegance had the fastest of five double clear rounds in 32.626 seconds. Hector Florentino and Ultimo, owned by Stransky's Mission Farms, finished in second place in 33.419 seconds. Theo Genn and Eduardo Leon's Janitzio placed third in 34.973 seconds. Fourth place went to Kristen Vanderveen and Bull Run's Eternal, owned by Bull Run Jumpers One LLC, with their double clear in 35.927 seconds. Gemma Paternoster and Osiris placed fifth in 39.568 seconds.
Commenting on his winning mount, an eight-year-old mare by Heartbreaker x Nabaab, Kerins explained, "I just rode her yesterday for the first time. A good friend of mine, Maarten Huygens, has her and he just asked me if I would be interested in showing her this weekend. I jumped her in a smaller class earlier on today and she jumped very well. She actually won the Level 7 as well, so we decided to give her a run this evening. It is probably the biggest class that she has done in her career."
"She was good. She was a little bit green in the first round. I just didn't know what to expect, but she is very careful and seems very competitive," Kerins said. "In the jump-off, I left out one stride down to the double of verticals and she handled it very well. She is just a very competitive mare."
Huygens stated, "I showed her myself in the 1.30m the whole summer and this is the first time that she jumped a big class with a big rider. She is for sale and until then Darragh will keep playing with her. She will probably try some 1.45m or maybe even more. I think she would be a really good high junior jumper for someone young."
Source: Lauren Fisher for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
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