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Joe Fargis Wins $175,000 Cargill Grand Prix of the United States to Close the 2003 Oaks Blenheim International

San Juan Capistrano, CA—July 19, 2003—Three-time Olympic medalist Joe Fargis of Southampton, NY, rode Edgar to the win in the $175,000 Cargill Grand Prix of the United States, presented by HBO, to conclude four action-packed days of equestrian competition at the Oaks Blenheim International CSI****, part of the Capistrano Summer Festival in San Juan Capistrano, CA.

Fargis topped an international field of 26 horses and riders in Sunday’s spectacular finale. Four entries, all U.S. Equestrian Team (USET) veteran riders, qualified for a tiebreaking jump-off by turning in penalty-free rides in each of the first two rounds. Finishing second was Gabriella Salick of Thousand Oaks, CA, aboard Sandstone Laurin and ending the day in third was the defending champion, Chris Kappler of Pittstown, NJ, who was on the mount on which he won last year’s title, Royal Kaliber.

Salick was the first to return for the jump-off. She had one rail down in the tiebreaker, finishing the course with four faults in 44.71 seconds. Next up was Fargis, winner of individual and team Gold Medals at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games at Santa Anita and a team Silver Medal at the 1988 Games in Seoul, Korea. He rode Edgar to his third fault-free ride of the day, finishing the jump-off clean in 48.29 seconds.

Two-time Pan American Games team Bronze Medalist Debbie Stephens of Glenmoore, PA, followed Fargis on Cosequin CEO, but she had two rails down for eight faults in a time of 50.09 seconds for an ultimate fourth-place finish. The day’s final entry was Kappler, seeking his second consecutive title. He and Royal Kaliber, whom he will ride for the U.S. in next month’s Pan American Games in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, gave it a good shot, but they had one rail down for four faults with a time of 45.81 seconds to give Fargis the win.

”He came to me already developed as a grand prix horse,” Fargis said of Edgar, his longtime partner with whom he has had much success. “I was already an old man when I got him, now he is an old man, too. Today was a great day for both of us.”

Exciting equestrian action delighted spectators throughout the four days of competition at the Oaks Blenheim International. Thursdays events saw Kappler win the $10,000 Hermès Speed Class and Will Simpson claim top honors in the $10,000 Robert Mondavi Jump-Off Class.

On Friday, Beezie Madden came away with the win in the $25,000 St. Regis Resort International Class, and Kappler took first place in the $10,000 Jump-Off Class Madden took center stage again on Saturday
with her win in the $50,000 Budweiser International Speed Derby, while Josephina Nor won the $10,000 Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic, Saturday’s other featured event.

The Oaks Blenheim International is the United States’ first outdoor CSI, an international individual show jumping competition. It was first held in 2001 when Todd Minikus of Loxahatchee, FL, emerged as
champion of the Cargill Grand Prix of the United States. In 2002, Kappler’s win came in dramatic fashion over three-time World Cup Champion Rodrigo Pessoa of Brazil.

Proceeds from the Capistrano Summer Festival benefit The Latino Coalition Foundation. The Latino Coalition Foundation is a non-profit, non-partisan 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization based in Washington, DC.
TLCF was established in 1995 to address policy issues that directly affect the well-being of Hispanics in the U.S. Their agenda is to develop and promote policies that will enhance overall business, economic and social development of Hispanics. For more information on The Latino Coalition Foundation, please visit their website at

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