Traverse City, Michigan, USA. – August 10, 2018 – On Friday afternoon, Molly Ashe Cawley of the United States claimed the $35,000 Great Lakes Classic CSI 3* aboard D’Arnita at the Great Lakes Equestrian Festival (GLEF). After previously holding the lead with her second mount qualified for the jump-off, Cat Ballou, Cawley returned on D’Arnita to best her first time by one second to earn both first and second place honors.
The first round course, built by Canadian course designer Michel Vaillancourt, saw nine out of 46 finish faultlessly to advance to the jump-off. With eight electing to return for the tie-breaking round, only four completed the class double-clear.
The early clear pathfinder was Peter Leone (USA) riding his first of two mounts in the jump-off, Capito Z, owned by Capito Group LLC. They set the pace to beat at 44.30 seconds.
However, his lead was short-lived as Peter Lutz (USA) followed Leone with another clear round on Gallagher/Meller Sport Horses‘ Camillo VDL, stopping the clock two seconds faster in 42.33 seconds to take over the lead.
Molly Ashe Cawley (USA) & Cat Ballou
The top spot on the leaderboard continued to change hands as Cawley produced the next clear round with Louisburg Farm’s Cat Ballou, an 11-year-old Holsteiner gelding, in 41.29 seconds.
Molly Ashe Cawley (USA) & Cat Ballou during the awards ceremony
Cawley and D’Arnita achieved another top result at GLEF during Week V in the $35,000 East Wind Farms Welcome Stake CSI 3*, where they finished in the same time as Mexico’s Santiago Lambre and Ibabco to tie for third place.
The 2018 GLEF will conclude on Sunday, Aug. 12, at the Flintfields Horse Park at 2 p.m. with the highly anticipated $100,000 Grand Prix of Traverse City CSI 3*. Prior to Sunday’s main event in the Grand Prix Ring, the Karin Flint Perpetual Trophy will be presented to the rider/trainer who has demonstrated outstanding horsemanship and achievement throughout GLEF. To purchase tickets for Sunday, click here.
From the Winner’s Circle
Molly Ashe Cawley (USA) – $35,000 Great Lakes Classic CSI 3* Winner
“We got her when she was 7. [Elizabeth] Johnson and Louisburg Farm bought her and she’s just been an amazing partner and competitor in the sport so far. I’m really excited about her future. I can’t say enough good things about her. D’Arnita’s just quick. She’s handy, she’s savvy and she always looks for the jumps so you can really whip back on a vertical or oxer without too much concern because she’s always eyeing it right up.”
On her jump-off strategies with D’Arnita and Cat Ballou:
“D’Arnita is naturally a faster horse than Cat Ballou, who’s a big horse. He’s great in wide, open spaces. There were quite a few really tight turns in this jump-off, both to the right, which hasn’t, in the past, been [Cat Ballou’s] strong suit so I was really impressed with how he actually handled the turns. Everything just came right up out of stride. He’s got such a big step and was able to do one less to the last than most others did. With D’Arnita, I was trying to be clever and outrun [Cat Ballou]. I almost shot myself in the foot at fence four in the jump-off because I turned back and I was like, ‘Oh boy, there is no distance.’ She fixed it for me. She wanted to win today.”
On what’s next for D’Arnita and Cat Ballou:
“D’Arnita goes to the Hampton Classic next and Cat Ballou will go to the Silver Oak Jumper Tournament just for the grand prix. He’s going to show Sunday here.”
“This is a great show. I haven’t been here in the last four years but I came before then a couple of times. We really enjoy this show and the area. It’s nice with the new management. It’s been beautiful. We’ve had a great two weeks. It’s been great to have [my son] Connor with me both weeks. [My daughter] Taylor was here the first week but she had to go to Pony Finals so I’ve only got one [this week], but he’s my partner in crime.”
RESULTS – $35,000 Great Lakes Classic CSI 3*:
Place / Rider / Country / Horse – R1 Faults / R2 Faults / Time
1. Molly Ashe Cawley (USA) & D’Arnita – 0 / 0 / 40.63
2. Molly Ashe Cawley (USA) & Cat Ballou – 0 / 0 / 41.29
3. Peter Lutz (USA) & Camillo VDL – 0 / 0 / 42.33
4. Peter Leone (USA) & Capito Z – 0 / 0 / 44.30
5. Ali Wolff (USA) & Exotik Sitte – 0 / 4 / 41.68
6. Kristen Vanderveen (USA) & Bull Run’s Almighty / – 0 / 4 / 42.23
7. Peter Leone (USA) & LS Donner – 0 / 4 / 44.29
8. Kristen Vanderveen(USA) & Bull Run’s Faustino de Tili – 0 / 38 / 81.18
9. Margie Engle (USA) & Royce – 0 / WD
10. Juan Gallego (COL) & Fee Des Sequoias Z – 1 / 76.74
11. Manuel Alvarez Ruizgalindo (MEX) & Enjoy – 1 / 76.83
12. Quentin Judge (USA) & Messenger – 1 / 77.36
Source: Press Release by Taylor Rains / Phelps Media Group for Great Lakes Equestrian Festival
Photos: © Diana Hadsall Photography