Tuesday, May. 28, 2024

Woodstock Wins The Blue At Twin Rivers

Woodstock has been largely absent from the competition scene for the last two years, but he came back with a win for Amy Tryon at the Twin Rivers Winter Horse Trials, March 3-5.

Tryon wanted a confidence building, qualifying round from their trip to Paso Robles, Calif. The blue ribbon in the advanced division was an added bonus.

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Woodstock has been largely absent from the competition scene for the last two years, but he came back with a win for Amy Tryon at the Twin Rivers Winter Horse Trials, March 3-5.

Tryon wanted a confidence building, qualifying round from their trip to Paso Robles, Calif. The blue ribbon in the advanced division was an added bonus.

The 11-year-old, bay Thoroughbred gelding (Candi’s Gold–Norcliffe) placed second at the Foxhall CCI*** (Ga.) and completed the Burghley CCI**** (England) in 2002. He opened the 2006 season with a third place in an intermediate division at Ram Tap (Calif.) in February before making the trip to Twin Rivers.

Tryon, 36, of Duvall, Wash., was pleased to have “Woody” back in the line-up. ”He’s had almost two years off due to untimely injuries. It’s great to have him back and competing,” she said.

Rain, sometimes heavy, throughout the dressage portion of the weekend made conditions less than ideal. Tryon, who had four horses to compete, remarked ruefully, “It seemed to start to rain again every time I had to ride a test.”

In spite of the weather, Woodstock put in a respectable test, scoring 31.7 and lying fifth going into the next two phases. They added 3 time penalties in show jumping to move up to third, and a clean jump around the cross-country with only 8 time penalties put them into the top spot.

“I got to work with [Capt.] Mark Phillips two days before the event, and we decided the game plan for this weekend with this horse was to have a good round and get him qualified for Rolex [Kentucky CCI****] next month. The win was a pleasant surprise,” said Tyron.

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Career Change
Lady Calido, the U.S. Eventing Association 2005 preliminary horse of the year, has started the 2006 season well, scoring a win in the Twin Rivers intermediate division with Robyn Fisher in the irons. This comes on the heels of another win two weeks earlier at Ram Tap (Calif.).

“Cali,” a 10-year-old, bay Holsteiner mare by Calido, was imported as a broodmare from Germany in 2000. She continued that career, producing two offspring, before meeting Fisher in 2004. In less than two years, she has risen from novice to intermediate, and Fisher is aiming her for the Fair Hill CCI*** this fall in Maryland.

At Twin Rivers, the pair put in a solid dressage test to place third with a score of 39.2. Those would be the only penalty points placed by their names as they jumped double clear around the show jumping and the cross-country to clinch the win.

“She just keeps getting better,” said Fisher, 26, of West Hills, Calif.

Fisher also placed second in the advanced division with her seasoned partner, Le Samurai. They bested eventual winners Tyron and Woodstock by nearly 2 points in the dressage, with an even 30.0.

“He put in a really good test, for him,” Fisher said of the 11-year-old Thoroughbred-Holsteiner. “It would have been nice if it had scored a bit better, but I was pleased with his performance.”

A rail and 2 time penalties kept them in fourth after the show jumping. “The rail was completely my fault,” Fisher pointed out. “He jumped great.”

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They went on to jump a clean round cross-country, adding only 8.4 time penalties to finish on a score of 44.4. “I didn’t even put my watch on for the cross-country,” she said. “We went out to have a good time, and he was phenomenal.”

Last year, Fisher and Le Samurai retired on course after falling at Rolex Kentucky. Later in the year they finished fourth at the Fair Hill CCI*** (Md.), and Fisher plans to take another crack at Kentucky this spring. “We’re just taking it one show at a time. We’ll see what happens,” she said.

Soggy Conditions
Due to the nearly constant rain leading up to the weekend, the organizers of Twin Rivers made the decision to swap the cross-country and show jumping phases to allow the ground a chance to dry. It was a decision that Tyron and Fisher agreed with.

“Being first out with Woodstock on the cross-country, I knew we would have the best of the ground conditions, and he jumped around well. The footing held up throughout the day better than I thought it would. It was absolutely the best decision to swap phases,” said Tyron.

“The organizers of Twin Rivers did a great job,” added Fisher. “The dressage was a bit muddy but OK. The footing on the cross-country was good.”

Tyron did choose to pull her Olympic partner, Poggio II, from the competition. Although he stood second after the first two phases in the advanced, she chose to err on the side of caution in case the footing didn’t hold up. “He’s 13, and he jumped this course last year. I decided to be a little careful with him,” she explained.

Derek di Grazia’s cross-country courses were praised by both riders. “The courses here are great; they have a little bit of everything,” remarked Tyron. “Overall, it’s an excellent event.”

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