Traverse City, Michigan, USA. – Aug. 9, 2020 – The 2020 Great Lakes Equestrian Festival, presented by CaptiveOne Advisors LLC, finished with a bang Sunday as 50 international contenders vied for the top prize in the $137,000 CaptiveOne Advisors Grand Prix CSI 3*. As the final major contest of Week Six, the class’ prize money matched that of Week Five’s Sunday event as the largest pot of the series, offering an enticing prospect to the horse-and-rider pairs hailing from ten nations. Showing off their footspeed and precision, Alex Granato (USA) and Page Tredennick’s Carlchen W propelled to the top of the leaderboard to earn the lion’s share of the purse and lead the lap of honor, closing out the series on a high note.
Each athlete only had one horse in the class, putting the pressure on each exhibitor to perform to the best of their abilities. Entries included Week Six’s previous FEI winners Kent Farrington (USA) and Kristen Vanderveen (USA), plus Week Five’s grand prix victor, Margie Engle (USA). For the first-round track, course designer Manuel Esparza (MEX) created a 16-effort pattern strategically sprawled across the Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel International Ring.
Fifth to enter the ring, Rich Fellers (USA) and Lux Lady logged the first fault-free ride of the class to serve as the trailblazers, but they would not stand alone for long as Abigail McArdle (USA) soon added her name to the clear list aboard Victorio 5. By the halfway point, three more had kept all the rails in their cups within the time-allowed: Teddy Vlock (ISR) on Volnay du Boisdeville, Daniel Bluman (ISR) riding Gemma W and Lillie Keenan (USA) with Agana Van Het Gerendal Z. The latter portion of the first round saw seven more combinations qualify for the jump-off, bringing the total numbers of eligible returners to a dozen. Capt. Brian Cournane (IRL) and Armik, Andrew Bourns (IRL) on Sea Topblue, Granato riding Carlchen W and Catherine Tyree (USA) aboard BEC Lorenzo each turned in clear rounds to earn their place over the short course. Following suit were Megan McDermott (USA) and HH Callas, Alise Oken (USA) on Hitchcock VD Broekkant and Vanderveen with the ride on Bull Run’s Risen to close out the first phase with no faults to their names.
Second to contest the abridged track, McArdle piloted Victorio 5 to a very fast precedent as the first double-clear pair, tripping the timers in 37.75 seconds to lay down the gauntlet. The lead quickly changed hands, though, as Bluman and Gemma W galloped to the swifter fault-free time of 37.66 seconds to edge ahead by mere milliseconds. Taking the risk and leaving out a stride from fence 9 to 10B, Granato and Carlchen W sped to an efficient trip in 36.57 seconds to overthrow the leaders and claim their stake at the top, awaiting the results of the final four. The remaining duos took their turns around the pattern, but none were able to best the efforts of the leading pair, solidifying Granato and Carlchen W as the triumphant team in the $137,000 CaptiveOne Advisors Grand Prix CSI 3*.
The top three ultimately consisted of partnerships that were, at one point, class leaders. Bluman and Over The Top Stables’ Gemma W claimed the reserve honors, and McArdle rounded out the podium with Victorio Equine Group LLC’s Victorio 5. In total, the class saw six double-clears.
Headed into Sunday’s highlight event, Jonathan Corrigan (IRL) still sat on top CaptiveOne Advisors $30,000 Leading Jumper Rider Bonus standings, a status he has held for eight weeks since the first chapter of competition in June. He managed to stay at the top with 33 points even though he did not compete Sunday, and Bluman moved up the order to claim second place, just five points shy of the lead with 28. Vanderveen is in third place with 27 points. The bonus will be awarded to the rider who accumulates the most points in competitions $25,000 or more in prize money over the course of 11 weeks of riding in Traverse City, concluding with the $213,300 CaptiveOne American Gold Cup Grand Prix CSI 4* on September 13.
CaptiveOne also sponsored the inspirational “Clear for a Cause” campaign to benefit JustWorld International, a not-for-profit organization that transforms the lives of children in impoverished communities by funding education and nutrition programs. Money was donated every time both the JustWorld International and the CaptiveOne jumps were cleared throughout the six-week circuit. Thanks to the exceptional efforts by show jumping athletes, $24,900 was raised in total for the CaptiveOne Advisors “Clear for a Cause” campaign.
The Great Lakes Equestrian Festival, presented by CaptiveOne Advisors LLC, concluded its six-week series Sunday. A short break will lead into the Adequan/USEF Junior Hunter National Championships East Coast from Aug. 23 – 25, followed by the Traverse City Fall Horse Show, presented by Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel, beginning Aug. 26.
Winner’s Circle – Alex Granato (USA)
On Carlchen W:
“Today I rode Carlchen W, who is a long time partner of mine and he is very experienced. He has been my Nations Cup horse and my 5* horse for a couple of years now. We are just trying to get back in the swing of things after the break from COVID-19 so we thought the [Great Lakes Equestrian Festival] would be a nice place to get started in the 3* classes here.”
On his win:
“I’ve been feeling a little rusty while I’ve been here so this morning I was just trying to stay focused on my horse and get back in the swing of things. [Carlchen W] jumped a great first round and then with everybody in the jump off getting faster and faster I just tried to rely on the horse I know and his speed and it paid off today.”
On the Great Lakes Equestrian Festival:
“This is my first time coming to Traverse City and being at the Great Lakes Equestrian Festival shows. I have wanted to come for years but it never made it on my schedule, but we made a point of it this year. It’s a great venue coming off of a long break so I really enjoyed it. The town was great, there are great restaurants, and the show, for hunters and jumpers, was a lovely venue. I just got off the phone with [Carlchen W’s] co-owners, Page and Sarah Tredennick, and they were really excited. They are trying to come in the fall. Page has actually been here as a judge but not as an exhibitor so she was excited to see her horse do well here.”
Results – $137,000 CaptiveOne Advisors Grand Prix CSI 3*
Place / Horse / Rider / Country / Owner / R1 Faults | R1 Time / R2 Faults | R2 Time
1. Alex Granato (USA) & Carlchen W / Page Tredennick / 0 | 73.980 / 0 | 36.57
2. Daniel Bluman (ISR) & Gemma W / Over the Top Stables LLC / 0 | 76.310 0 | 37.66
3. Abigail McArdle (USA) & Victorio 5 / Victorio Equine Group LLC / 0 | 76.210 / 0 | 37.750
4. Andrew Bourns (USA) & Sea Topblue / Andrew Bourns / 0 | 74.340 / 0 | 37.90
5. Megan McDermott (USA) & HH Callas / Counter Balance LLC / 0 | 74.690 / 0 | 38.35
6. Captain Brain Cournane (IRL) & Armik / M&M Robert Stiller / 0 | 75.360 / 0 | 40.210
7. Catherine Tyree (USA) & BEC Lorenzo / / Catherine Tyree LLC / 0 | 76.370 / 4 | 39.95
8. Richard R. Fellers (USA) & Lux Lady / Richard R. Fellers / 0 | 76.240 / 8 | 38.980
9. Kristen Vanderveen (USA) & Bull Run’s Risen / Bull Run Jumpers Inc. / 0 | 76.560 / 8 | 40.84
10. Alise Oken (USA) & Hitchcock VD Broekkant / Hi Hopes Farm LLC / 0 | 73.140 / 8 | 41.080
11. Lillie Keenan (USA) & Agana Van Het Gerendal Z / Chansonette Farm LLC / 0 | 75.960 / 8 | 44.15
12. Teddy Vlock (ISR) & Volnay Du Boisdeville / Vlock Show Stables LLC / 0 | 71.890 | RT
Source: Press release by Elaine Wessel / Phelps Media Group for the Great Lakes Equestrian Festival
Photos: © Andrew Ryback Photography