Mill Spring, North Carolina, USA – August 14, 2020 – Kristen VanderVeen (USA) and Bull Run’s Almighty topped $15,000 Horseware Ireland Welcome Stake last Friday during the second week of the August Series at the Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC).
VanderVeen (USA) and the Bull Run Jumpers Six LLC-owned 2008 Hanoverian gelding (Caspar x Quidam De Revel) claimed the opening class of the week backed by their 34.889-second jump-off performance.
“Almighty has really come into himself the last year or two,” VanderVeen detailed. “We’ve really gotten on the same page about how to go fast and keep the jumps up. It’s been fun to have him in these national Grand Prix classes, as we get to really practice our speed. He’s really started to find the jumps, so he’s gotten much faster.”
Andrea Torres Guerreiro (COL) and Fifty Shades, her own 2008 Westphalian gelding (Call Me Number One x Sion), took home second place with no penalties and a final time of 36.301 seconds.
John Angus (USA) rounded out the podium aboard Ecanto J, Barnhill and Cheska’s 2009 Dutch Warmblood gelding (Canturano x Verdi), in 37.562 seconds.
Known for her speed and efficiency over jump-off tracks, VanderVeen noted that Tryon Stadium’s fully-engineered riding surface, installed this spring, allows for stability even in tight turns: “The new footing is great! I was really able to get out of the turns today. I did a pretty aggressive leave-out in the first line, and he was able to land and still have his feet under him, then push out of the corner to the next jump. It felt very secure.”
VanderVeen, a familiar face at TIEC, has been splitting her time – and her horses – between show venues this month, prioritizing national competition at TIEC for some of her string and competing at the international level with others at the Great Lakes Equestrian Festival. “I just flew in from Michigan [this week], and had two successful weeks there. With the limited show options, I left three horses here in Tryon and brought three to Michigan, so I’m splitting my team a little bit to try to get as much showing in as possible.”
Vanderveen and her string will be competing in the upcoming Tryon Fall Series, likely staying “through the FEI shows. Then, if things go well, we’ll head back to Florida!”
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Source: Press release from TIEC – Tryon International Equestrian Center
Photo: © TIEC