Mill Spring, North Carolina, USA – July 15, 2020 – Sydney Shulman (ISR) and Villamoura won the $37,000 Wednesday Classic CSI 3* at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC). Shulman and the 2009 Selle Français mare (Diamant de Semilly x Unknown) owned by Jill Shulman were one of 21 pairs to qualify for the jump-off out of 54 entries challenging the Ken Krome (USA) course design.
The American-born rider and Villamoura sped around the short course in 36.536 seconds while leaving all the poles up for no penalties, thus securing the blue ribbon.
Shulman shared that Villamoura is a top mount in her string: “She really stepped up this winter, and is one of my top horses. She jumped the Nations Cup for Israel and had a clear round there, and she won a five-star class at Deeridge. She’s on a roll! She jumped two national classes here last week and felt great. She was just all over this class today! It was so much fun.”
Shane Sweetnam (IRL) taking second in a time of 37.522 seconds aboard his own Indra Van De Oude Heihoef, the 2008 Belgian Warmblood mare (Casantos x Action-Breaker).
Lacey Gilbertson (USA) and Baloppi, the Seabrook LLC 2007 Danish Warmblood mare (Balou du Rouet x Unknown), stopped the timers at 38.39 seconds to earn third.
A self-proclaimed “huge fan of Ken Krome courses,” Shulman noted that the tough track was well-suited to her mount. “I thought it was challenging enough, with the certain angles coming out of lines. You had to be on it. If you didn’t get the first part then it kind of messed you up for the skinny, the second part. It rode really nice, and the jump-off was really set for her with the proper angles on each lead.”
In the jump-off, Shulman planned to “just lay it all out on the table,” she said. “She’s so fast across the ground. If anything, I’m holding her back. I did two more strides than I wanted on the way to the second jump, but she’s so fast across the ground that I did two less to the double after that. The left turn to the skinny was a little hard for me, because she likes to go left, so I set that up and then ran to the last jump.”
In addition to a competitive horse, Shulman credited the newly re-engineered footing in Tryon Stadium with her success, saying, “the footing is amazing! It’s like a springboard. Obviously, getting off the ground and landing is important, but to me, turning is crucial as that’s when you feel it the most. All of the horses feel like they have such traction on it and are jumping really nicely. The improvements that they [TIEC] made are great, and it’s only benefiting us more.”
Shulman concluded by relaying that Tryon Summer 6 is her first competition back after a break due to COVID-19 shutdowns. “I’m so happy to be here! It’s the first time I’ve left my house since we got back from Florida on May 1st. I came to Tryon before I went to a grocery store! When we came here, everything was really smooth and nice. My mom, who’s also my owner, kept everything right in line so when we got here we weren’t that out of practice. I’m really grateful, and we’re definitely happy to be back showing. I was always hungry to win, but now I’m definitely even more hungry!”
Tryon Summer 6 continues through Sunday, July 19, with a $6,000 Speed Stake CSI 3* at 8:00am in Tryon Stadium ahead of Saturday evening’s $137,000 EquiSafe Global Grand Prix CSI 3*. While competitions are currently closed to spectators, free live streaming is available for highlight classes at www.Tryon.com/streaming.
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Source: Press release from TIEC – Tryon International Equestrian Center
Photos: © Sportfot