David O’Brien and Estoril Delle Roane Open ESP Spring II

April 11. 2024

Ireland’s David O’Brien opened the second week of the 2024 ESP Spring Series, presented by Florida Coast Equipment, with a win in the $32,000 BrainJuice CIS3* 1.45m riding Estoril Delle Roane on the grass derby field at Equestrian Village, home of the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival during the winter season. The Spring Series at Wellington International runs for five weeks as part of the ESP Annual Series and concludes on May 12. 

The first day of international competition welcomed 54 horses to the field on Thursday. Ana Catalina “Catsy” Cruz (MEX) set the two-phase course with less than a second separating the top-three finishers.

David O’Brien & Estoril Delle Roane, winners of the $32,000 BrainJuice CIS3* 1.45m. Photo © Sportfot

O’Brien and Estoril Delle Roane, the 10-year-old Italian Sport Horse (Cristallo I x Hattrick) owned by Postage Stamp Farm, led the way with a double clear in 29.97 over the jump-off phase. Fellow Irishman Paul O’Shea rode Hellcat to second in 30.46 seconds for owner Team Eye Candy, while Lebanon’s Jad Dana rounded out the podium in 30.67 seconds riding Fleur de-Lis’ Cherie, owned by The Cherie Group. 

“I’m headed to Spruce Meadows soon, so I wanted to get as much time out here on the grass as I could and get the horses accustomed to the different atmosphere,” said O’Brien, trainer at Annabelle and Stephanie Garrett’s Postage Stamp Farm. “I was probably the first one to do the six into the double and with his scope, it’s very easy for him. It's such a big field as well; you can stay rolling."

David O’Brien & Estoril Delle Roane are presented as winners of the $32,000 BrainJuice CIS3* 1.45m. Photo © Sportfot

Estoril Delle Roane joined Postage Stamp Farm in September of 2023 as a mount for Stephanie Garrett to jump in the amateur ranks. “He’s so brave and there’s honestly not a single person I wouldn’t trust him with,” continued O’Brien. “He’s become a very special horse in our barn and I’m very grateful for Postage Stamp Farm for giving me the ride this week.”

O’Brien took over for his student while she is away visiting colleges, and she will take the reins back over during ESP Spring III. 

Estoril Delle Roane has made a name for himself within the Postage Stamp Farm family after being the former ride of Italy’sPaolo Adamo Zuvadelli. He campaigned the mount from the Jumping World Breeding Championship for Young Horses in Lanaken (BEL) up through the two-star and three-star levels. “I watched him jump a two-star with the horse and I knew I had to have him,” recalled O’Brien. 

Ireland was two-for-two in international competition on the field Thursday. Dermott Lennon won the Bainbridge Companies CSI3* 1.40m aboard King Kannan GP, a nine-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Kannan x Warrant) owned by Elan Farm. By only fractions of second in the jump-off, they topped second-place finisher Samuel Parot (CHI) on his own Chrystal Blue.

Dermott Lennon & King Kannan GP, winners of the Bainbridge Companies CSI3* 1.40m. Photo © Sportfot

Up-and-coming talent also took to the field on Thursday with Lillie Keenan (USA) and youngster Emerlon winning the Keyflow Feeds USA 7-Year-Old Young Jumper 1.30m. Double-clear and quick, the Emerald son out of Cassinis Toulonia (Toulon) carried Keenan and her own Chansonette Farm to victory over runner-up Luke Jensen (USA) on Wyndmont’s Candeux.

To view full results from Thursday at ESP Spring II, please click HERE

Greenberg Traurig Green Hunters Shine in International Arena

Professional hunters took to the International Arena at Wellington International for the Greenberg Traurig Green Hunter divisions at 3’, 3’3” and 3’6” heights. Kicking off the day for the Green Hunters, Lisa Rex of Westbury, NY, earned a tri-color in the 3’6” division with Mr. Right, owned by Fait Accompli, LLC. They traded off wins throughout the division with Jacob Pope (Columbia, MD), who finished reserve champion with Camillo, owned by Bill Schaub & Aster Hill.

Lisa Rex & Mr Right, champions of the Greenberg Traurig 3'6" Green Hunter division. Photo © Sportfot
Victoria Colvin & Higgins after their tri-color in the Greenberg Traurig 3'3" Green Hunter division. Photo © Sportfot

At the 3’3” height, Loxahatchee’s own Victoria Colvin swept the division, picking up both tri-colors. She took champion honors riding Gothic for owner JT Farm and reserve aboard Higgins, owned by Bonnie McCabe.

Canada’s Quincy Hayes, who hails from Aurora, ON, piloted Vadim to champion honors in the 3’ offering with two wins over fences for owner Samantha Roper. Wellington's own Jennifer Bliss rode Callaway, owned by Robert Anthony to reserve. 

To view a complete list of hunter champions from ESP Spring II, please click HERE.