"It was a beautiful course," commented Reed. "There weren't a lot of dedicated lines, so you had a lot of options to be really handy or more conservative if you had a greener horse. Today, I really just wanted her to get some experience on the grass field. These shows are so competitor friendly, there are plenty of classes to show in and there are warm ups everyday."
Reed and GTF Snax were third to go in the derby, which was held in the “Hunt and Go” format. Thanks to a consistent round, the pair received a score of 86 in both the Classic and Handy phase for a combined score of 172. The pair managed to hold the top score all the way through the class.
Taking the second-place ribbon was Ki-Juan Minors, of Wellington, FL, and Pop Muzic, owned by Marilla Van Beuren, with a combined score of 169.5, earning an 85 in the Classic phase and an 84.5 in the Handy phase. Completing the podium was Isabela de Sousa of Lexington, KY, and Sergent Stables' Diara Blue. The pair scored an 84 in the Classic phase and an 85 in the Handy for a combined score of 169.
Jumper competitors returned to the Derby Field Saturday morning for the $5,000 Arion Sellier USA 1.35m Stake. With a starting list of 22 riders, just five managed to qualify for the second round. Galloping to the top spot was Maya Ines Denis Chambon (MEX) aboard her own entry, Callypso De La Hamente Z, in a double-clear time of 31.906 seconds. Rachel Turk (USA) claimed the red rosette with Golden Boy VL, owned by Turk Performance Horses, with a time of 33.237 seconds. The last combination to jump two clear rounds, Valentina Maury (VEN) and her Quentin posted a time of 36.199 seconds to round out the podium.
The Derby Annex once again welcomed hunter derby competitors to the field for the $1,000 2'6"-2'9" Hunter Derby "Hunt and Go," presented by CLPR Wind. Marcus Cmola Au of Boca Raton, FL, and Taylor Lewis' Klarenchide DN earned the tri-color ribbon thanks to a high score of 92 in the Classic phase and an 80 in the Handy for a total of 172 points. Just one point behind the winners, Blythe Karolyi of Wellington, FL, rode Fantasy, owned by Natalie Bass, to a score of 86 in the Classic phase and an 85 in the Handy phase. Suzanne Burns of Wellington, FL, earned a third-place finish with her Lady Roxy after earning a 78 in the Classic phase and a 73 in the Handy phase.
Sunday morning’s action started early with the Palm Beach Equine Clinic Medium Junior/Amateur Jumper Classic. Seven competitors entered the class, held in the immediate jump-off format, with two returning for the short course. Of the returning competitors, it was Richard Neal (USA) and his own Diamant who took home the win. The pair was double-clear and set the winning time to 37.91 seconds. Claiming second was Izabella Barrett (USA) and VDL Elliot, owned by Bo Hopson, with a time of 40.852 seconds and four faults. Closing out the top three was Jordan Gibbs (USA) and Dana Vollbracht's JDP Dougland, with a first-round time of 80.703 seconds and one fault.
The $25,000 FreeJump Grand Prix took place Sunday to round out Summer III as the feature class of the weekend. Twenty-one competitors took to the course, designed by Andy Christiansen (ECU), with seven riders returning for the jump-off. In the end, Eugenio Garza Perez (MEX) led the victory gallop with El Milagro's Victer Finn DH Z.
"Victer is a long-time partner of mine. We had a great year last year, and I'm starting to bring him back now to prepare for Spruce Meadows. He'll be the second horse to Contago, hopefully taking some of the load off of him. This is a great place for us to prep, the facilities are great and the footing is excellent," shared Perez.