Rodrigo Pessoa (BRA) and HH Palouchin continued their reign at the top in Friday afternoon's $10,000 G&C Farm Speed Stakeduring CSIO week at the FTI WEF. This was the pair's second trip to the winner's circle this week after also winning the day session of the $5,000 Welcome Stake on Wednesday.
In the field of 28 international starters, Pessoa and Palouchin completed the fastest of six clear rounds in 63.76 seconds. Reed Kessler (USA) and Onisha finished second in 65.36 seconds. Nicholas Dello Joio (USA) and Geledimar placed third in 68.15 seconds. Darragh Kerins (IRL) and Hot Wheels stopped the clock in 68.53 seconds to finish fourth. Darragh Kenny (IRL) and Lipton De L'Othain, owned by Windward Farm, placed fifth in 69.08 seconds, and Paulo Santana (BRA) and Santana Stables' Athena jumped clear in 76.80 seconds to finish sixth.
HH Palouchin is a 1999 Belgian Warmblood gelding by Baloubet Du Rouet x Chin Chin, owned by Double H Farm. In addition their two victories this week, Palouchin and Pessoa also won week seven's $32,000 G&C Farm 1.45m Classic, week four's $6,000 Spy Coast Farm 1.40m Speed Challenge, and week two's $6,000 Spy Coast Farm 1.40m speed class.
Today's speed stake win came easily as the pair geared up for tomorrow's $32,000 G&C Farm 1.45 Classic. Commenting on his ride, Pessoa stated, "It was a good course. Tomorrow's 1.45m is a good class for him, so I didn't want to go crazy today. The course suited him pretty well and I could just let him go, stay in the tracks and keep some for tomorrow."
It was a hot day in Wellington, and the heat played a factor for many horses. "He was really quiet today. For horses that are like him, I think this weather knocks them on the head a little bit," Pessoa stated. "They are just like us, they have the same reaction; they get a little bit heavy when it is like this. For him it takes a little bit of the edge off, which is really ideal. He went around really soft today; he was less hectic than usual, so that was good. Hopefully we can keep that composure because tomorrow is the one that we are aiming for really. We want to make it three out of three for him."
Although Palouchin is always eager and ready to go in the show ring, Pessoa said he is actually quite calm in the barn. "He is a different horse at home, he is really quiet," Pessoa described. "As soon as he steps on the show grounds he walks under the bridge to come in the ring and he changes, he lights up. He knows that this is his game place and just turns into a totally different horse. He definitely knows when it is all about business. It is good that he goes that way, that he doesn't get intimidated or scared or anything."
Also showing in the International Arena today, Laura Chapot and Zealous earned a victory in the $6,000 Spy Coast Farm 1.40m Speed Challenge. Hardin Towell and Nolde triumphed in the $6,000 Spy Coast Farm 1.40m jump-off class.
Source: Press release from Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
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