$100,000 The Chronicle of the Horse/USHJA International Hunter Derby Finals Round 2 Preview and Order of Go

Aug 21, 2010 - 12:47 PM

August 21 Lexington, Ky.

The course is set for Rounds 2 and 3 of the $100,000 The Chronicle of the Horse/USHJA International Hunter Derby Finals, scheduled to start at 6:30 pm in the indoor arena at the Kentucky Horse Park.

The 25 riders set to return will certainly have their work cut out for them. Their hard work from yesterday won’t count, as riders return with a clean slate. Round 2 follows classic format, with the top 12 entries returning for the handy class. There was one scratch before the final (Jen Alfano and Extraordinary) and 26th placed Posse (Colleen Acosta) will take that spot.

The big surprise in this year’s track is the circle of hay bales, which riders must jump in and out of in both rounds.  In Round 2 the circle is incomplete, and riders pass through the gap and jump the hay bales once (Fence 9) then turn back around to jump in and out through the circle (10 and 11). Riders will only jump through the circle once in the handy.

If this sounds vaguely familiar, that’s because Bobby Murphy, who co-built this track with Patrick Rodes, debuted this obstacle in handy round he and Skip Bailey built in the $50,000 The Chronicle of the Horse/USHJA International Hunter Derby in Wellington, Fla., in April. Most horses made it through without much of a bobble, with a few notable (and otherwise capable) exceptions. Those standouts included Brunello, who placed third yesterday in Round 1 of the Finals and looked to be one of the favorites heading into Round 2. Liza Boyd stopped out at that obstacle, dubbed by many as the “Circle of Doom.”

 “I thought it was just landscaping,” joked Scott Stewart after finishing second in the class on Summer Place behind Louise Serio and Castle Rock. “My horse was fine, but some equitation horses had a problem with it. It was a bit trappy.”

 Serio, dubbing the obstacle “difficult but not impossible,” kidded that she’d never seen anything quite like it at the time, but she was sure that the element would start showing up at barns across the country.

“It was weird, you didn’t expect the horses that didn’t like it not to,” said Serio at the time.

Other horses who took exception in that class included junior hunters Felicci (Alex Vespicco), Allejandro (Katie Dinan) and Washington Internation Equitation Classic-winner Travino (Patricia Griffith).

There’s plenty of overlap between horses in that class and those in Round 2 here. Thirteen horses—Maui (Tiffany Morrissey), Jersey Boy (Jennifer Alfano), World Time (Tori Colvin), Peridot (Tammy Provost), Early Applause (Maggie Jayne; Kelsey Thatcher in Wellington), Borealus (Katie Dinan), Declaration (Stewart), Listen (Kelley Farmer), Brunello (Boyd), Sander (Jayne; Thatcher in Wellington), Summer Place (Stewart), Taken (Farmer) and Castle Rock (Louise Serio)—have already attempted the obstacle. With the exception of Brunello, none on the list had major problems.


Order of Go: (determined by random drawing)

 1 Rock Star/Louise Serio

2 Westview/Peter Pletcher

3 Sander/Maggie Jayne

4 Jersey Boy/Jen Alfano

5 Declaration/Scott Stewart

6 Peridot/Tammy Provost

7 Borealus/Katie Dinan

8 Castle Rock/Louise Serio

9 NLF Shakespeare’s Rhythm/Peter Pletcher

10 Brunello/Liza Boyd

11 Early Applause/Maggie Jayne

12 The Specialist/Jen Alfano

13 Lone Star/Hunt Tosh

14 Summer Place/Scott Stewart

15 CR Haribo/Colleen Acosta

16 Taken/Kelley Farmer

17 Poetic/Maggie Boylan

18 Castello/Liza Boyd

19 Maui/Tiffany Morrissey

20 Posse/Colleen Acosta

21 C Coast Z/Lillie Keenan

22 World Time/Victoria Colvin

23 Francesca/Maggie Jayne

24 Tell All/Peter Pletcher

25 Listen/Kelley Farmer

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