Wellington, Florida, USA – February 12, 2023 – After winning the qualifier on Friday, Texas native Jacqueline Ruyle (USA) raced to the top of the leaderboard in the CHF$50,000 Griffis Residential Grand Prix CSI 2*. With a first-round field of 44, the lucky number of the day seemed to be 15 as again 15 competitors advanced to the jump-off. Of those that advanced to the next course, nine exhibitors produced double-clear efforts. The lap of honor, however, was dominated by American female athletes as Ruyle led the charge, followed by Mimi Gochman (USA), and rounded out by Molly Ashe Cawley (USA).
The phrase ‘tiny but mighty’ was practically made for Ruyle’s partner, the 12-year-old Zangersheide mare Cyramo Z (Clarimo x Vigo d’Arsouilles Stx). Standing not significantly taller than a pony, and looking even smaller with the backdrop of large fences in Wellington International’s expansive International Arena, the mare proved that heart counts more than size.
“She is by far the smallest, hottest, fastest horse I have,” Ruyle laughed. Her time of 34.93 seconds, a full two seconds ahead of runner-up Mimi Gochman (USA), proved as testament to the statement. “I bought her as a seven-year-old and she was competing in the 1.20m classes and we thought she would be an awesome Medium Amateur horse.”
Mimi Gochman flew to the second place position with the Gochman Sport Horses, LLC’s 10-year-old Zangersheide stallion Cosmos BH (Chellano Alpha Z x Artos Z) with a tidy time of 36.94 seconds.
Veteran professional Molly Ashe Cawley and Oakridge Farm’s 12-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding Loukas de La Noue (Malito de Reve x Mr Blue) stopped the clock in 37.33 seconds to earn the final top-three position.
The move into two-star grand prix competition was not one that Ruyle saw coming for either her mount or herself, but the partnership prompted both horse and rider to put their best efforts forward.
“I was a slow rider competing in the medium amateurs when I got her and she taught me how to go fast,” said Ruyle. “She has jumped everything we’ve put in front of her and is always incredibly brave. She’s honestly my favorite ride of the horses I have.”
Final Results – CHF $ 50,000 Griffis Residential Grand Prix CSI 2*
1) Jacqueline Ruyle (USA) & Cyramo Z – 0 – 34.93
2) Mimi Gochman (USA) & Cosmos BH – 0 – 36-94
3) Molly Ashe Cawley (USA) & Loukas de la Noue – 0 – 37.33
Source: Press Release from Equestrian Sports Productions
Photos: © Wellington International / Sportfot
Categories: CSI 2*, English, Jumper News USA, Winter Equestrian Festival