Matthew Metell Cruises to Victory in The Ridge at Wellington’s Turf Tour 1.30-1.35m Jumper Class
Matthew Metell and Cyon Z Won 1.30-1.35m Jumper Class at The Ridge at Wellington Turf Tour
Wellington, FL – March 11, 2015 – The Ridge at Wellington’s Turf Tour returned to International Polo Club (IPC) Palm Beach to kick off the tenth week of competition. While the morning saw some unexpected showers, the afternoon brightened up and competitors flocked to the expansive polo fields to try their hand against some of Wellington’s most competitive jumpers. It was a gorgeous setting for the horses and riders to enjoy beautiful courses designed by Eric Hasbrouck in the main ring and Nick Granat in the second ring, with polo games taking place just a few fields away.
Matthew Metell was only the second rider to go double clear on the first card. That didn’t stop him from putting in a very impressive fast time of 41.514 seconds. His time would hold up through the entire afternoon. “I thought [the course] rode great. It had a lot of bending lines, and I liked the flow to it.”
Like many riders who attend The Ridge Turf Tour, he is using it as an opportunity to develop his horses, away from the hustle of the show grounds. “This is Teddy’s third time on the grass. We’re keeping him here the whole winter to give him some experience, because he’s a young 8-year-old. He’s been a good boy here! He likes the turf.”
He continued, “I think it’s really great for them to be able to gallop across the grass field a little bit. It’s nice to be able to change it up a little bit when you’re here for 12 weeks. It’s been really enjoyable here at IPC. We went to Wanderer’s once and Tonkawa last week. It’s been fun doing The Turf Tour.”
Nina Fagerstrom went only three horses later and did her best to catch Metell’s time, but stopped the clock in 41.597 seconds aboard Hot Topic. At the end of the day, Laura Kraut turned in a very fast time of 41.613 on Alisma to finish in third.
Nick Granat has been enjoying designing the courses alongside Eric Hasbrouck. “Working with Eric has helped me considerably-feeding off his energy, and his experience, has made me become a better course designer. It’s always nice to have him on hand in case I have any questions.”
The riders are always complimenting the courses, commenting on how well they flow and use the fields. As the series has progressed, extremely successful riders including Anne Kursinski have praised the tracks, expressing how appropriate the questions are and how they are keeping things fresh as the Tour continues.
Granat continued, “I think we’ve learned these horses, and know what to give them so we can make the competition ask the right types of questions without over facing or not challenging the riders enough. It’s been a pleasure to work with Eric throughout the series.”
Jonathan McCrea and Brugal VDL
Ring two was abuzz with activity today as riders took on the Low and Medium Schooling Jumper Courses designed by Nick Granat. Emily Snack rode Jessika to a win for owner Centennial Farm in the Low Schooling Jumpers 1.10-1.15m Table II, Section 2.2.1 and Erinus, owned by Carlie Fairty, took home the blue ribbon in the Low Schooling Jumpers 1.10-1.15m Table II, Section 2b.
“She [Jessika] is a really great Child/Adult Jumper. It was her first time coming over to The Ridge and she was super, not fazed by anything,” said Snack. “I thought the courses were great today and really set up to be a positive experience for horses and riders.”
In the Medium Schooling Jumpers, Brugal VDL, owned by Candy Tribble and ridden by Jonathon McCrea, rose to the top in the Medium Schooling Jumpers 1.20-1.25m Table II, Section 2.2., in one of his first outings since an injury last September. Stephan Barcha piloted Heticcra to a first place finish in the Medium Schooling Jumpers 1.20-1.25m Table II, Section 2b for owner Nelson Pessoa.
“The course was really nice and for me, it was good to do some turns and practice that stuff since he’s been out of the ring so long,” said McCrea. “We jumped the first class here and he made a small mistake in the jump-off, and lucky enough it was the exact same turn in the speed and he learned from it.”
Many riders are able to come to The Ridge and gain experience in a low-key, competitive environment that gives them exposure to new surroundings and new types of footing. For trainer Debbie Stephens of Centennial Farm, the opportunity is invaluable.
“I think it’s good to jump your horses on different surfaces. It’s very easy to go to. The competition is not as many people, in terms of people, but the jumps are the same height and you still have top riders. I think that it gives [the horses] a little diversity,” said Stephens.
Friday’s events promise to be exciting, with the $15,000 1.40m Grand Prix running from 8 am through 4:30 p.m. on the turf field. The second ring will begin at 8 a.m., with two classes running concurrently at the low schooling jumper height until noon. At 12:30, medium schooling jumpers will begin, with two cards running concurrently until 4:30 p.m.
Week 10 of the Ridge at Wellington Turf Tour is taking place at The International Polo Club, located at 3667 120th Avenue South in Wellington, FL, 33414. The show entrance will be off 120th Street between Lake Worth Road and Pierson Road.
The Ridge would like to thank Dover Saddlery for their support of the 12-week series as the cooler and banner sponsor, and they would also like to announce their most recent jump sponsor, Panthera, the leaders in wild cat conservation. Panthera joins Hollow Brook Wealth Management and PJ Saddles as the series’ jump sponsors.
Show Net will be onsite for both Wednesday and Friday events posting live results, as well as videoing rounds in both rings. For results and videos please visit www.shownet.biz.
Meadowbrook Horse Transport will provide transportation to and from the horse show and other locations throughout Wellington for both the Wednesday and Friday events. The transportation is a nominal fee of $75 per horse, and will be calculated into the final show fees. To make a reservation for one of the three pickup times: 8 a.m., 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. please call Peter Tufano of Meadowbrook Horse Transport at (954) 415-7217, or call Nona Garson at (908) 500-0996.
For more information about the Ridge at Wellington please go to www.theridgefarm.com. For up-to-date information please follow the Ridge at Wellington on Facebook.
Press Release Courtesy of Phelps Media Group
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