Saugerties, New York, USA – June 5, 2022 – Sunday marked a triumphant return to the grand prix ring for Laura Bowery during Hits Saugerties. After a two-year hiatus from grand prix competition and two back surgeries, the talented rider piloted Glasgow de Muze to a double-clear victory in the $100,000 Yvel Grand Prix at Hits-on-the-Hudson. She was able to edge out Michael Desiderio (USA) aboard Le Muguet and Katherine Anne Brewer (USA) with Casido 2, who placed second and third, respectively.
Winning during her first grand prix in two years meant a lot for Bowery, who enjoys competing at Hits Saugerties. “I love Tom and Jane [Struzzieri],” expressed Bowery “I love that my 10-year-old daughter can show. My sister’s up here, which is like a big thing for us because she’s always been my biggest supporter. We just lost our mom two months ago, so I feel like there’s something about my sister being here and her getting to watch me win a grand prix. I know my mom is watching over us, so it was a really special day.”
Juan de Dios Alvarez posed many questions to the riders in the first round of the $100,000 Yvel Grand Prix, including three technical double combinations and a wide triple bar in the final bending line going away from the gate. Only six were able to clear the course and advance to the jump-off. The tiebreaking track included an oxer followed by an option for a very tight rollback to a careful vertical-oxer double combination before a long gallop down the final line with the opportunity to leave out a stride and make up valuable time.
Michael Desiderio (USA) was the first rider to complete a second clear effort with Le Muguet, but he opted to go around the gazebo in the tight rollback, making the Great American time to beat a conservative 50.079 seconds.
Katherine Anne Brewer (USA) was next with Casido 2, and in an effort to top the time they lowered the height of a single fence for 4 faults in 43.419 seconds, to slip right behind Desiderio on the leaderboard.
Laura Bowery (USA) was the only other rider who was able to leave all of the rails intact, traversing the track in a faster 46.797 seconds with Glasgow de Muze, which would claim the winning title.
“I really went in there to be smooth,” said Bowery. “This is my first real grand prix with this horse. I just got him towards the end of Florida. He’s a great horse. He’s a veteran, but he is a little tricky turning sometimes. I decided not to go inside the gazebo because he’s a little hard to turn. Instead, I decided to just go fast around, and I stuck to my plan to be smooth.”
Glasgow de Muze is an experienced 16-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding, and when Bowery was looking for a horse to return to the grand prix ring with he was the perfect match. “He is a very big horse, but he’s very sensitive,” she noted. “I’ve really worked on my relationship with him on the flat. The rideability and the control have gotten so good in the last month. I came into this really feeling like I was going to be competitive!”
“It’s been a really long road back,” concluded Bowery. “It’s not even soaking in yet, but I did say to myself this morning that I have so much faith in this horse. I can’t thank Jimmy and Danielle Torano enough for putting us together. They’re just amazing family friends, and I’m just over the moon!”
Jumper action at HITS Saugerties will continue over the next week during the Spring Series as part of the complete HITS-on-the-Hudson season, which runs through September at the world-class facility. Hits-on-the-Hudson will feature a $100,000 Grand Prix each week, in addition to the $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix each Friday. Classics in the Junior/Amateur Jumpers close out each week, in addition to the High, Low and Modified Children’s and Adult Jumper Classics, which are qualifiers for the Marshall & Sterling Insurance League Finals.
Final Results – $100,000 Grand Prix
1) Laura Bowery (USA) & Glasgow de Muze – 0 / 0 – 46.797
2) Michael Desiderio (USA) & Le Muguet – 0 / 0 – 50.079
3) Katherine Anne Brewer (USA) & Casido 2 – 0 / 4 – 43.419
Source: Press Release by Rebecca Walton for Hits Horse Shows – Saugerties
Photo: © Hits Horse Shows / Rebecca Walton / ESI Photography