Lexington, Ky. – July 29, 2018 – The final day of the Kentucky Summer Horse Show concluded competition with hunter horses highlighted in the Stonelea Ring for the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby, sponsored by World Equestrian Center and Kentucky Horse Shows. Twenty-five horse-and-athlete combinations contested Jasen Shelley’s classic round over ten obstacles with four high options, with Alyssa Mansfield posting an unbeatable total score of 178 across two rounds to claim the victory with Ashland Farms’ Candor.
Rachel Kennedy earned the second place ribbon aboard Lissa Bachner’s Meridian, just one point shy of the win with a 177-point total, while Rachel McMullen and Centerfold K, owned by Henge Hill Investments, rode to third place with a score of 175.5.
Twelve riders were called back to challenge the handy round in reverse order of score over nine fences with four high options, finishing with a trot fence. Returning with an 84, Kennedy laid down an impressive second round to capture the highest handy round score of 93. She remained on the top of the leaderboard through the following four riders until Mansfield and the 10-year-old Warmblood gelding returned second to last in the order. Taking all high options to earn a handy score of 90, Mansfield’s combined score caught her the win.
Fresh off of a win in the $20,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby, Junior and Amateur Section at Country Heir II in June, Mansfield and Candor have already made a great team within their few short months of partnership. In addition to their derby success, the pair competes in the adult amateur division and recently captured the Adult Amateur 18-35 Hunter Championship at the Kentucky Spring Horse Show.
The Kentucky Summer Classic will begin Tuesday, July 31, and will run through Sunday, Aug. 5. The week will highlight the $25,000 Hagyard Lexington Classic on Thursday at 6:30 p.m., while Saturday will feature the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby, sponsored by World Equestrian Center and Kentucky Horse Shows. The $50,000 Kentucky Summer Grand Prix, sponsored by GGT Footings, will begin at 7 p.m. in the Rolex Stadium.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Alyssa Mansfield– $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby winner
On her plan for the handy round:
“For the second round, those were all the strides that I had planned to do but he really had a good bold canter so we just tried to match that. It was nice to pick up a bold canter and use it to kind of make everything work out. There weren’t really many options where you could go inside so I really tried to make it look a little more handy by going very forward and hunter-y.”
On competing in the National Derby:
“It was a really nice course to do in a little bit of a smaller ring. You have to really relate the next jump to the jump you are jumping and be ready. I won a derby on him a few of weeks ago during the County Heir shows in the Walnut Ring and it was the same feeling. This class is a lot of fun to do on him.”
“He is owned by Ashland Farms. I have been lucky enough to get the ride on him the last few months but I have been riding with Ken and Emily [Smith] forever. They didn’t have anyone for him so he was offered to me and he has been incredible. He jumps around with me in the adult hunters as well, but he really loves the derbies. He rises to the occasion every time.”
On showing in Kentucky:
“We come to Kentucky at the beginning of May and spend about six months at our farm here. We do all the Kentucky shows and it is so nice to have the shows basically in our backyard. It’s a great venue, the footing is so good, the shows are run well and there is something for everyone.”
FROM THE JUDGE’S BOOTH
Sissy Wickes and James Clapperton – $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby judges
On what they look for in the National Derby:
“In any hunter class you are looking for way of going and style of jumping first. Then the riders need to find a way to navigate the jumps in the right distances and execute the course as it is set. We are also looking for top hunter type horse with movement. Style and movement are very important for us whether doing a derby or a regular hunter class.”
On the competition:
“There were some very nice horses and good riders. The National Derbies are really fun because you get a mix of junior, amateur and professional riders. It is fun to see everyone compete against one another because a lot of time the International Derbies are just professional. The National Derbies are a huge success for our industry, which is obvious due to its popularity. We tip our hats to the people that originated it and promote it. It’s a great event.”
On the handy round:
“We thought the handy round was straightforward today. There were a few challenges with the tightness of the turns and the trot jump at the end, but everyone seemed to handle it very well.”
“I think the Kentucky Horse Park is the greatest venue in the United States. We have both been here as trainers, parents, competitors and now judges, and it doesn’t matter what you are doing, it’s a phenomenal place to be. The footing, jumps, schedule and staff are all great.”
$5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby
Place / Horse / Rider / R1 Score / R2 Score | Total Score
1. Candor / Alyssa Mansfield / 88 / 90 | 178
2. Meridian / Rachel Kennedy / 84 / 93 | 177
3. Centerfold K / Rachel McMullen / 87.5 / 88 | 175.5
4. Take Two / Keri Kampsen / 86 / 86 | 172.00
5. Outshine / Alexandra Worthington / 87 / 84.5 | 171.5
6. Ziggy Stardust / Lindsay Maxwell / 80 / 85 | 165
7. Gabli / Daniel Bedoya / 83 / 81 / 164
8. Resonate / Abby Jorgenson / 85.00 / 78.5 / 163.5
9. Callahan / Lily Walton / 79 / 84 / 163
10. Legacy / Ashley Vogel / 89 / 67 / 156
11. Undeniable / Michelle Newman / 78 / 77 / 155
12. Escara / Bennett Kitchens / 77.5 / 39 / 116.5