CSI 2*

Alison Robitaille & Ester de Maugre are the Masters of the $38,500 Friends of Tbird CSI 2*

Langley, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada — June 02, 2023 — Alison Robitaille’s (USA) familiarization with new mount Ester de Maugre has been one of experimentation.

A tack adjustment and the identification of a preferred grass surface proved to be the winning formula Friday at Thunderbird Show Park’s Odlum Brown BC Open CSIO 5* & CSI 2*. Robitaille and the quick-footed 9-year-old mare recorded the first international victory of their young partnership in the CSI 2* Friends of tbird 1.45m.

Alison Robitaille (USA) & Ester de Maugre

The pair bested an 11-horse jump-off over Peter Holmes’ (CAN) shortened track. The winning time was 40.23 seconds. James Chawke (IRL) and Howard du Seigneur finished second (40.51 seconds), with Grant Seger (USA) and Yoghi Flp third (41.80).

“My horse is a very quick horse naturally,” Robitaille said. “I was surprised I took the lead when I landed from the last jump. I thought that I had pulled in too many places.”

Alison Robitaille (USA) & Ester de Maugre

At the recommendation of her coach Kent Farrington (USA), Robitaille acquired Ester de Maugre in December from Mark Bluman (COL), also the former rider of her top mount, Oakingham Lira. The forward-thinking mare prefers to do things her way, and at first, that proved to be a give-and-take situation with her new rider.

“We slowly got to know each other over the jumps. We tried some different bridles, and I wasn’t sure what to use,” Robitaille explained. “I asked Kent to ride her a bit for me when I was in Virginia with my kids, and when I came back, he made the suggestion for me with this blue pelham, which she really likes.

Alison Robitaille (USA) & Ester de Maugre

“She really likes to feel like she’s pulling me and in control,” she added, “and I like to feel like I have some sort of say of when we leave the ground. It’s been a little bit of a work in progress, but this seems to be working great.”

Tbird President Chris Pack & CEO Jane Tidball present the award to the winners Alison Robitaille (USA) & Ester de Maugre

Final Results — $38,500 Friends of Tbird CSI 2*1.45m

1) Alison Robitaille (USA) & Ester de Maugre — 0 / 0 — 40.23

2) James Chawke (IRL) & Howard du Seigneur —  0 / 0 — 40.51

3) Grant Seger (USA) & Yoghi Flip — 0 / 0 — 41.80

Source: Press Release from Thunderbird Show Park

Photos: © Tbird / Quin Saunders