Lexington, Ky. - July 21
Caroline Martin had a lot to smile about at this year’s Adequan/NAJYRC. Not only did her Area III team take home the team gold medal in the CCI**, but she also captured individual gold aboard Quantum Solace.
Martin, 18, Miami Beach, Fla., jumped a clear cross-country round but added 2 time penalties to drop to second going into show jumping. When leader Rowdie Adams, of Area V, dropped two rails with No Money Down, Martin’s clear round secured the gold. “I was proud of ‘Nacho’ today. I came into the arena and my nerves got the best of me and I kept getting him to deep distances and he kept jumping out every time,” said Martin. “I have so much faith in this horse. He’s one of those horses that feels like you’re sitting on top of the world. I could aim him at a car or any jump and I know he would make it over. He has so much heart and it’s effortless.”
Martin’s teammate Jenny Caras, 17, finished in the bronze medal position with Fernhill Stowaway, adding one rail to their score. “When I was walking the course, I thought it was massive and there was one time where I didn’t think I could do it, but [coach] Kyle [Carter] was there for me. I went in there, and even though he’s one of the greener horses, he felt like he had seen everything,” she said.
Mary Atkins Hunt and Nuance added two rails to their score, while Matilda Segal and Guinness X were eliminated on cross-country on Saturday. “We just have a lot of great girls on our team. Some of us are best friends, some of us are new friends, but we all get along just the same and we love each other a lot. I think that’s why we’ve had any kind of success here,” said Segal of their win.
While Adams was disappointed to lose her individual lead, she was pleased to finish with “Boxer”, an off-the-track Thoroughbred who she found in a junkyard six years ago. Adams was emotional when talking about her best friend. “He’s give me everything, and no one would have thought years ago [that he would be anything] and he’s proven everyone wrong,” she said. “He jumped around yesterday like a pure genius, and he could have had every jump down and I still would be very proud of him.”
The combined team from Areas VII, VIII and IX (Jacqueline Larouche on The Gingerbread Man, Erin Strader on Radio Flyer II and Lizzie Snow on Ringfort Tinkaturk) won the silver medal, while Area V took the bronze medal (Alexa Ehlers on In Any Event, Adams on No Money Down and Mary Frances Cargile on Take The Mick).
Area III Wins Again
Area III’s junior team (Victoria Clayton on The Secret Agent, Ashley Dodds on Manhattan, Diane Portwood on Cinerescent and Nicole Doolittle on Tops) held on to their lead to take home the gold and anchor rider Doolittle, 15, jumped a clear round on Tops to secure individual gold.
Doolittle was the only rider on the team with NAJYRC experience, having ridden last year. “It was really nerve-wracking being here,” said Portwood. “I groomed here last year which helped me a lot because I knew what to expect and how everything worked, but it’s much different when you’re riding. It’s a lot more pressure.”
Doolittle has been getting to know Tops, who she bought from Danielle Dichting, this season. The gelding has NAJYRC and advanced-level experience, but Doolittle knew the competition wouldn’t be a walk in the park. “He’s really in tune with how you’re feeling. I’ve gotten into a great rhythm with him and I’ve just had a blast getting to know him. He’s just become my best friend,” she said.
Ann O’Neal Pevahouse, 18, Little Rock, Ark., moved up from seventh place after cross-country to the individual silver medal with a clear round on Don Bosco, while April Simmonds, 15, Uxbridge, Ont., moved up from eighth place to the bronze medal with a clear on Impressively Done.
The combined team from Areas VII and VIII (Mary Peabody Camp on Rave Review, Margaret Ragen on Surefire’s Anwar, Emily Macauley on Canadian Exchange and Ashlynn Meuchel on Morning Star) took the silver medal and Area II (Morgan Booth and Lucky Little Spy, David Pawlak and Just Bailey, Madeline Parisan and Hope To Star and Chase Shipka and Victory Shetan) won bronze.
For full results, visit the NAJYRC website.