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    Kylee Arbuckle

    Kylee Arbuckle

    SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO — Thirty-nine leading West Coast junior equitation riders competed in Blenheim Farm’s covered arena at the Rancho Mission Viejo Riding Park on the evening of Sept. 18 in the ASPCA Maclay West Coast Regional Finals. With thirty returning for the flat phase and five for the work-off, it was 16-year-old Kylee Arbuckle aboard Kimberly Lynch’s D’Anconia Copper who finished on top to secure her place in 2010 ASPCA Maclay National Championship on Nov. 7 at the Syracuse Invitational Sporthorse Tournament.

    Arbuckle, trained by Karen Healey, showed mastery of the course and rode her mount with style and poise, earning her a spot in the top ten of the flat phase.

    Following the jumping portion of the competition, the top thirty riders in the class were called back to work on the flat, divided into three groups of 10 with the highest-scoring riders flatting last. Judges Kip Rosenthal and John Roper asked for the walk, trot, and canter in both directions as well as a lengthening of stride at the trot down the long side of the ring.

    The judges then chose their top five and asked them to return to the ring for a work-off. In reverse order, the juniors were asked to jump several jumps, including a trot jump and a rollback turn as well as to demonstrate two simple changes through the walk before returning to the line-up. Sitting second after the over fences and flat phases, Arbuckle had the advantage of watching three riders test before her, Audrey Coulter (Mary Manfredi, trainer), Clementine Yost (Benson Carroll, trainer) and Morgan Geller (Peter Lombardo, trainer). She clearly commanded the work-off requirements, having the most solid ride of the five. Sitting first after the first two rounds, Theodore Boris (Karen Healey, trainer) was the final junior to tackle the test. Unfortunately, he missed to the jump after the rollback turn, leaving the win open for Arbuckle.

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