The race was on Friday afternoon at the Del Mar Horsepark as 39 horses and riders took to the Grand Prix field for the $36,500 Del Mar speed class during the Del Mar International World Cup Week. The 1.45m course was designed by Alan Wade of Ireland and consisted of 14 jumping efforts including two double combinations.
The riders and horses had no choice but to go for speed in the one-round class, and that speed caused more than a few horses to incur jumping faults at various obstacles. But nine pairs went clear and their respective placings were determined by the clock.
On top of the leaderboard was Richard Spooner and his young mount Quirado, an 8 year-old grey Holsteiner gelding owned by Richard Spooner and Guy McElvain of Rancho Corazon. While Spooner is nicknamed the “master of faster,” Quirado isn’t necessarily a speed horse. “He’s really lofty,” said Spooner, “But today I got it done. He’s learning to turn and stay nice and smooth. He was fantastic today, I’m really proud of him.”
Spooner has had the ride on Quirado since he was six, and he intends to continue taking his time with the gelding. “Eventually he’ll be doing some of the bigger classes, but this year he’s just going do some of the smaller stuff.”
Richard Spooner & Quirado RC
Young professional Zazou Hoffman nipped at Spooner’s heels on her mount Samson II, turning in a time only four-hundredths of a second behind Spooner. Samson II is a 13 year-old bay Swedish warmblood gelding owned by Woodacres Stables LLC in Santa Monica, CA.
Rounding out the podium in third place was Kevin Babington of Ireland, riding Double O Seven 7, a 9 year-old grey KWPN gelding owned by Babington’s Katznelson Jumpers LLC.
Source: Press Release by Lorna Lowrie for West Palms Events
Photos: © Kristin Lee Photography
Categories: CSI 3*