Wayne, Illinois, USA – July 09, 2023 – During the $50,000 Hits Grand Prix Win at Hits Chicago on Sunday, Lisa Goldman-Smolen (USA) once again displayed her winning partnership with her seasoned mount Sovereign. They generated one of three double clears of the day. Savannah Hemby (USA) and Juju VDM finished close on Goldman’s heels, claiming second while fellow Red Coat Farm partners, Adeline Rohrbach and Nike, finished third in their first Grand Prix together.
“I’ve had Sovereign for seven years now with Barbara Disko and he has become my rock,” smiled Smolen after her win. “He is the favorite horse in the barn and he’s my favorite horse to ride. He just loves his job so much. He is 17 now, so we pick and choose a little bit how many classes we do with him.”
Sovereign and Goldman were the pathfinders of the day, going first in the original order to return as first of four for the jump-off. The jump-off course began over a newly introduced oxer towards the front of the ring, and gave riders the opportunity to demonstrate their skills featuring multiple tidy turns and a few long approaches to allow for extended gallops before riders turned to the final large oxer towards home.
Goldman was fast and technical with everything she did and produced a very fast jump-off time of 36.441 seconds.
Savannah Hemby (USA) and Juju VDM followed very close behind missing Goldman by fractions of a second with a time of 36.562 seconds.
Adeline Rohrbach (USA) and Nike were the last of the three double clear rounds and finished with a jump-off time of 36.562 seconds.
“Today was a really fun jump off, it had enough turns and good places to ask for a gallop,” said Goldman. “ It was just one of those courses that you wanted to go clean in the first round because you wanted to do the jump off, not just because you wanted to win.”
Smolen has spent her entire life competing at Lamplight Equestrian Center, where she also picked up several of her first significant victories.” I spend the entire summer here, I love it,” she said.” I get to go home every night when I’m here because it is close enough to my house and holds a lot of memories for me. It is truly is one of the most beautiful venues in the country.”
Two more weeks of show jumping action remain at HITS Chicago for the Lamplight Summertime. Next week’s competition will feature the $50,000 HITS Grand Prix, as well as Friday’s $25,000 HITS Grand Prix and $5,000 Hunter Derby.
Final Results –$50,000 HITS Grand Prix
1) Lisa Goldman-Smolen (USA) & Sovereign – 0 / 0 – 36.441
2) Savannah Hemby (USA) & Juju VDM – 0 / 0 – 36.562
3) Adeline Rohrbach () & Nike – 0 / 0 – 36.562
Source: Press Release from Hits Horse Shows
Photo: © Hits Horse Shows