Victory for Ireland’s Cormac Hanley in $25,000 Arion Sellier Grand Prix

June 3. 2024

Commencing competition Friday morning for ESP June I was the $10,000 1.40m Open Jumper Stake, sponsored by Bainbridge Companies, with 17 horse-and–rider pairs taking to the Derby Field at Equestrian Village. Six of the combinations advanced to the immediate jump-off, with USA’s Ryan Genn setting the pace with a speedy time of 33.149 seconds aboard Venezia D’Austral Z, owned by Bridlebourne Stables LLC. The duo was unable to be beat with Kevin Mealiff (IRL) securing both second and third place on his mounts, Faro (33.997 seconds) and Lodewijk (35.944 seconds).

Ryan Genn & Venezia D'Austral Z presented as winners of the $10,000 Bainbridge Companies 1.40m Open Jumper Stake by Richard Schechter. Photo © Cassidy Klein

Hunters showcased extraordinary talent in Friday’s $2,500 USHJA National Hunter Derby (Hunt & Go), sponsored by Parlanti. The highlight hunter event of the week was the first of two offered on the Equestrian Village’s grass Derby Annex Field. The class was held in a “Hunt and Go” format, meaning the first portion of the course was judged as the classic round, while the latter half of the trip was scored as the handy phase. Securing the blue ribbon among a field of talented competitors was Ed Copeland (USA) and Acapulco, owned by Wolfstone Stables & Sales Inc., with a total score of 172. Ella Bostwick and K&T Game of Thrones, owned by Christine Bostwick, came in a close second with a score of 169.5 while Danielle Menker (USA) took third with a score of 166 aboard Miramar, owned by Ponies & Palms Show Stables LLC. 

Ed Copeland & Acapulco presented as winners of the $2,500 USHJA National Hunter Derby (Hunt & Go), sponsored by Parlanti. Photo © Cassidy Klein

Taking place Saturday morning was the $5,000 1.35m Open Jumper Stake, presented by Omega Alpha. A total of 17 horse-and-rider combinations went head-to-head in the class with six producing fault-free rounds, advancing them to the immediate jump-off. Taking the lead was Canada’s Frankie Chesler and Ibalius SMH, owned by Sher-Al Farm Inc., with a time of 32.977 seconds. In second-place with a clear time of 34.781 seconds was USA’s Abigail McArdle aboard Samual Parot’s I&H Boogy Woogy. Taking third was Rachel Turk (USA) and Elana 22, owned by Turk Performance Horses LLC, with a clear time of 35.186 seconds. 

Frankie Chesler & Ibalius SMH presented as winners of the $5,000 1.35m Open Jumper Stake, presented by Omega Alpha. Photo © Cassidy Klein

Hunter competitors exhibited perfect partnerships in Saturday’s $1,000 2’6”/2’9” Hunter Derby (Hunt & Go), sponsored by ProElite. Taking top honors in the phase-combined track was Marus Au (USA) aboard Wishful, owned by Quail Run Partnerships, with a combined score of 169. Earning the second-place ribbon was Mexico’s Daniel Michan Halbinger with a score of 163 aboard Castleforbes Glenn, owned by Sergent Stables LLC while Raquel Ferreira (USA) earned third-place with First Blue LLC’s Better than Blue with a score of 157. 

Marcus Au & Wishful presented as winners of the $1,000 2'6"/2'9" Hunter Derby (Hunt & Go), sponsored by ProElite. Photo © Cassidy Klein

Closing out ESP June I with an impressive victory in the $25,000 Arion Sellier Grand Prix was Ireland’s Cormac Hanley. The main event of the week featured 24 horse-and-rider combinations, battling it out on the Derby Field along a track designed by Andy Christiansen (ECU). 

Cormac Hanley & For Dad in the $25,000 Arion Sellier Grand Prix. Photo © Cassidy Klein

Hanely and the Chris Stinnett-owned mount, For Dad, laid down the quickest clear result with a time of 38.792 seconds, securing themselves the position at the top of the leaderboard. Right on their heels was fellow Irishman, Kevin Mealiff, and his own, Lodewijk, with a clear time of 39.718 seconds. Rounding out the podium was Theo Genn (USA) and Pixie Stix, owned by Eye Candy Jumpers, with a time of 41.941 seconds. 

Cormac Hanley & For Dad presented as winners of the $25,000 Arion Sellier Grand Prix. Photo © Cassidy Klein

Competition returns to Equestrian Village for ESP June Equitation Day #2 on June 6th and continues into ESP June II from June 7th through June 9th. Explore prize lists and schedules HERE, and prepare for exciting summer competitions with our newly released Summer Series Prize List. 

To view full results from ESP June I, please click HERE.   

To view full champion results from ESP June I, please click HERE.