Riding into the ring for the $50,000 EMO Grand Prix at the new HITS Post Time show grounds at Ocala, Florida, Ian Silitch (Sperryville, VA) probably felt pressure to win. After all, Cable carried Alexander, Ians son, to victory earlier in the day in the Leadline Class. Silitch and Cable were one of four horse and rider pairs clean in the 37 horse field.
It was clear it would not be an easy day over the Ken Krome-designed course when Canadian show jumping star Ian Miller and Aftershock collected 8 faults as the first to go in round one. At the end of the first round, only four horse-and rider pairs had managed to best Kromes challenge.
Andre Thieme of Milford, NJ was first to tackle Ken Kromes jump-off course aboard Aalsmeers Enterprizo. They set the standard with a clear round and a time of 44.674. Canadian Erynn Ballard, a former North American Young Riders Championship gold medallist, tried to give Thieme a run for his money. She and Leacock had the time in 43.836, but a rail at the second to last effort cost them the victory. Silitch was next, and he left the rails up and stopped the clock in 42.768. The only who could beat Silitch was Callen Solem of Colts Neck, NJ on Alison, but in the end, they had to settle for second with a time of 43.801.
Silitch was thrilled with Cable's performance and victory. "This is Cable's first grand prix outing in four months. I didnt know what he would do, but he was outrageous!" During the awards presentation, Silitch laughed at Cable's antics. "Cable was better behaved in the Leadline photo session than he was after we won the grand prix."
Krome was pleased with his course and the field of horses. "I built a stout course with snug time allowed so the riders couldnt cherry pick the jumps."
Riders from 15 U.S. states and one Canadian province (Ontario) competed. The new show grounds have been well received by exhibitors, and todays grand prix winner was complimentary as well. "These are absolutely beautiful grounds. Let me tell you, its my favorite place to show."
RESULTS SUMMARY (TOP SIX PLACINGS):
PLACE HORSE OWNER
RIDER RIDER-CITY/STRD 1/RD 2/RD2 TIME/$