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Del Mar duel

Cook-Clarke rivalry adds a chapter after jump-off

From releases and staff reports - May 15th, 2014 - Show & Event News

Karl Cook and Signe Ostby's Jonkheer Z race to edge Lane Clarke on Semira de Saulieu by less than a quarter-second in a thrilling jump-off match at the $100,000 Grand Prix of Del Mar on May 3.

Karl Cook and Signe Ostby’s Jonkheer Z race to edge Lane Clarke on Semira de Saulieu by less than a quarter-second in a thrilling jump-off match at the $100,000 Grand Prix of Del Mar on May 3.

Patti Newton photo

DEL MAR — Thirty horses tried to clear the $100,000 Grand Prix of Del Mar course on Saturday night, only two were able to do it. Designer Leopoldo Palacios lined up a set of obstacles with enough variety that one little misstep turned otherwise fantastic rides into efforts of 4 faults or more.

Nineteen from the field of thirty had tried to jump those obstacles before Lane Clarke & Charlotte Gadbois’ Semira de Saulieu finished with no faults and under the time allowed. Six horses later bow-tie clad Karl Cook & Signe Ostby’s Jonkheer Z did the same, setting up a one-on-one jump-off between two top-five finishers from Friday night’s $25,000 Surfside Grand Prix.

Showing the form that got them there, Clarke & Semira de Salieu were through the jump-off course nearly perfectly in 39.440s. Cook was paying attention however, and matched the effort whiel managing to shave two tenths of a second off the time and earn the win.

Earlier Saturday night, Rich Fellers won the inaugural $10,000 Speed Derby class held prior to the Grand Prix of Del Mar with Colgan Cruise.

The Leopoldo Palacios course produced a lot of groans and cheers, as there was no room for error during Saturday night’s class. The solid red, white and blue United States wall came up fast as fence four. Whether or not that rattled their cage, soon after was a very short vertical to vertical three stride to a wide oxer in one stride and then directly on to the famous Del Mar butterfly oxer. And that was only half of it. The triple bar to the bicycle vertical rode tight in five, and the rainbow-striped triple combination toward the in-gate had a light black-colored plank jump directly after and then a turn to a large oxer at the end.

Rich Fellers takes Colgan Cruise to the 2014 $10,000 Speed Derby of Del Mar win.

Rich Fellers takes Colgan Cruise to the 2014 $10,000 Speed Derby of Del Mar win.

Patti Newton photo

Although the women held their own, the men did not disappoint. Olympic Gold Medalist Will Simpson and Katie Riddle, who were 10th overall, finished up a fantastic round with a long flying leap to the final oxer. Rails flew, Katie Riddle swam and Simpson’s hands went flying up in the air above his head bull-riding style. However both were horse and rider were in the tack on the backside.

Riding and absorbing all that Europe has to offer for the last four years, native Californian Andrew Ramsay came back last fall to compete in his home country, and this week in his home state. With goals of representing the United States as well as competing at the International level, Ramsay is touring some of the top U.S horse shows with his string of horses.

He qualified two mounts for the grand prix this week. His first horse, Welfare, had a refusal at the wall and a couple of rails. His second horse, Absie, had only one rail late in the course for a sixth place finish.

“It was much more challenging than it walked. It was deceptively difficult – not taxing on the horses but hard,” he said. “My less experienced horse, Welfare, went first. We’ve never jumped at this level; I’ve only been riding him for nine months. We hadn’t jumped that wall at all this week. It was early in the course and took him by surprise. I think a large percentage of the class had that jump down.”

Wrapping up the very last day of the Del Mar International Horse Show, there was still plenty of excitement to be had as the GGT Footing Grand Prix Series Final got underway. Sixty-five horse and rider pairs entered this class to battle it out for top honors today, and sixteen made it to the jump off. Out of those sixteen, we saw 7 impressive double clear rounds. In the end, Karl Cook and Banba, owned by Signe Ostby, set forth a lightning-fast time, holding off Will Simpson and Acorina to take the blue.

$100,000 Grand Prix of Del Mar Top 12
Place/Horse/Owner/Rider

1 – Jonkheer Z/Signe Ostby/Karl Cook
2 – Semira de Saulieu/Charlotte Gadbois/Lane Clarke
3 – Zamiro/Alix Fargo/Susan Artes
4 – Flexible/Harry & Mollie Chapman/Richard Fellers
5 – Kiss The Sky/Horsemanship Unlimited/Lane Clarke
6 – Absie/Shalanno Farms LLC/Andrew Ramsay
7 – Chianto/Forest View Farm Inc/John Pearce
8 – Dauphin De Muze/Alec Lawler/Alec Lawler
9 – Taunus/Prentiss Partners/Francie Steinwedell-Carvin
10 – Katie Riddle/Monarch International/William Simpson
11 – Cristallo/Show Jumping Syndications, Int’l/Richard Spooner
12 – Chivas Z/Richard Spooner/Richard Spooner

$10,000 Speed Derby Top 5
Place/Horse/Owner/Rider

1 – Colgan Cruise/Harry & Mollie Chapman/Richard Fellers
2 – Dancer/Crooks Show Jumping Llc/Lauren Crooks
3 – Acomulado/Laurie Thomas/Mandy Porter
4 – Irish 77/Moonlite Beach Llc/Marc Grock
5 – Sol De Corea/Andrew Chang/Mark Watring
6 – Spitfire/Equimark Inc/Brian Morton
7 – Cupilor (7)/Cross Creek Farms Inc./Michelle Parker
8 – Billy Bianca/Molly Ohrstrom/Richard Spooner

$25,000 Surfside Grand Prix Top 5
Place/Horse/Owner/Rider

1 – Kiss The Sky/Horsemanship Unlimited/Lane Clarke
2 – Chianto/Forest View Farm/John Pearce
3 – Chantico/Forest View Farm/John Pearce
4 – Alberto II/Stone Ridge Farms/Kara Chad
5 – Jonkheer Z/Signe Ostby/Karl Cook

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