Wayne, IL- June 4, 2014 - The Lamplight Equestrian Center was alive with exciting jumper action for the opening day of the Showplace Productions’ Spring Spectacular this morning, welcoming top-tier riders to the first of the three-week series. Thirty-six horse and rider combinations tackled the first day track for the 1.30m Open jumpers, with Tracy Fenney riding to a 1-2 finish to best the rest with two clean and clear jump-offs. Lisa Goldman and Centurion B raced to the first place finish in the 1.40m Open Jumpers with a speedy time of 38.720 seconds.
Only four riders were able to master the opening track of the 1.40m Open Jumpers, leaving all rails intact even when faced with rollbacks, a liverpool, and both a triple combination and double combination. Ryan Genn and Cookie Monster, owned by Wilhelm Genn of Lebanon, OH, were at the top of the order, but that did not deter the pair from riding to a double-clear effort in 39.520 seconds. Wilhelm Genn tried to duplicate their effort aboard Welcome COR, owned by Ann Anastasio of Wayne, IL, but a rail at the final obstacle cost them. Tony Font and Kissimmee, owned by Deana Blackburn of Houston, TX, also incurred four faults on course, and one time fault to eventually earn the third place.
Lisa Goldman was the penultimate rider to tackle the track, producing a double-clear effort in a speedy 38.720 seconds to ride to the top of the leader board with Centurion B. They showed no trepidation as they sped around the turns, shaving the seconds with their large stride to break the beam and claim the victory.
“I have had Leo since he was a 2-year-old, and now he is 12,” Goldman said. “He is my rock, and he is at a really good age. He is always getting better and better. We had an amazing winter showing for 10 weeks in Ocala, Florida this year. We won three of the grand prix and we were top 10 in about eight or nine of them. It was an amazing circuit, and now it just feels good to be home.”
Goldman recently came back from an injury, an unfortunate sprained ankle that happened on Valentine’s Day. Her performance out on the course today showed no signs of hesitation as she is now back in peak condition and ready for the three weeks of the Showplace Spring Spectacular.
“I thought the courses today were very good, they were welcoming for the opening day,” Goldman said. “Even though it rained last night, the footing was good, and I can only imagine how nice it is going to be for the rest of the week. The course today allowed for a good jump-off, and I am never going to mind if there is a good jump-off. I really liked it. It is a big ring, but it is good-this ring is like home for me. I have been coming here forever, and it is good to be back.”
Earlier in the morning Tracy Fenney made her mark aboard two top mounts in the 1.30m Open Jumpers. Out of 36 horse and rider combinations, she rode to a remarkable 1-2 finish with MTM Timon and MTM Centano. Seventeen competitors moved into the short course, and 12 were rode to a fault free jump-off, making the stakes high.
Fenney took the lead early in the class, riding MTM Centano, owned by MTM Farm of Flower Mound, TX, to a double-clear effort in 36.921 seconds. Nobody could match her pace, sacrificing speed for accuracy if attempted. Goldman put in a good effort, riding her own Rocs to Riches to a time of 37.152 seconds, just off of Fenney’s stride. She also attempted to catch her aboard El Dorado B, owned by Stephanie St. John of Deer Park, IL, but their time was still shy at 37.572 seconds.
Goldman laughed, “It was kind of like Ocala all over again. Rocs to Riches is my young 7-year-old, and she is very up-and-coming. She was great out there today, and I am really excited for her. I didn’t even think I was going that fast, so I was really happy with how she jumped.”
All eyes turned to Fenney as she returned to the Grand Prix Arena with MTM Farm Timon. Her time aboard MTM Centano had proven untouchable, that is by all but Fenney. She mimicked her earlier effort, but did one better, breaking the beam for a 1-2 finish in 36.685 seconds.
“It has been a while since I have shown both of them, since about April,” Fenney explained. “I wanted a class for them where they could get back into gear and not stress anything. We have been busy at home with sales and everything, so they have kind of been on the back burner. They are both very seasoned veterans, they do the grand prix so it is quite easy for both of them to compete at the 1.30m height. Both of them go well and ride well.”
Fenney concluded, “The courses are super nice, and the facility is absolutely fabulous. We hadn’t been here in nearly thirty years, and it is amazing. It is probably one of the nicest horse show facilities there is, it honestly looks like someone’s back yard. I would recommend this to anybody. We will be staying for the three weeks, and we have a little bit of everything-the hunters and the jumpers-so we will have a busy show with a little bit of variety.”