Wayne, IL – June 11, 2016 – Lisa Goldman piloted her mount Morocco to win the $30,000 Marshall & Sterling Grand Prix at the Spring Spectacular Horse Show at Lamplight Equestrian Center in Wayne, Illinois. Thirty riders took a swing at the course designed by FEI course designer, Catzy Cruz of Mexico. Cruz designed the course with wide oxers and technical rides between the jumps, leaving just eight riders to compete over the shortened jump off course. Local Chicago riders seemed to have the home court advantage in the final standings.
Goldman and Morocco did not disappoint with their signature style gallop across the track and tidy turns, stopping the clock at 35.755 for the win.
Goldman, from Hawthorn Woods, Illinois, has been a consistent winner this past year with both her grand prix rides, Centurion B and Morocco, at premier horse shows including a recent win at the Split Rock Jumping Tournament in Kentucky and a win at the Longines Global Masters Tournament in Miami.
Goldman and her Red Coat Farm clients have been serious contenders in the jumper ring this week with numerous top finishes in all divisions. Goldman and her mother, Mary, have a string of younger horses she shows and brings along to become future grand prix mounts as well as keeping the confidence up in their client’s horses. Goldman at only 26, has earned $879,572 in lifetime jumper money won, putting her within reach of the million-dollar club.
Liz Atkins from Benchmark Stables in Hampshire, Illinois, earned a clear round with Undine, and a time of 38,805 to secure the second place spot. Atkins is making a come back after a 2015 plagued with rider injuries including a broken ankle and a separated shoulder. She has been working hard to get back in the game, schooling her horses with professional Diane Carney, at 6:00 am when schedules permit, before Carney heads across town to school her own horses.
“I keep hearing Diane’s (Carney) voice in my head as I ride the tracks,” laughed Atkins. “As I walk the courses, I think about the exercises we’ve done in the schools and where I need to use those skills in the course. It’s really helped to have a ground person. One major thing I learned being injured is you need people. That was hard for me to accept because I’m a very independent person but I surrounded myself with a group of people that I knew would keep my horses in good condition and I’ve learned to take the help. You cannot be successful in this business without other people to help you.”
Atkins also won the 1.30m on her Carletta and the 1.40m class on Undine earlier in the week. Atkins just turned professional in 2014 and was named Top Young Professional Grand Prix Rider by USHJA that same year.
Young Chicago rider, Caelinn Leahy, 14, finished in fifth place with Esquilino Bay. Leahy had the fastest time of the group at 33.729, showing her bravery as she navigated economical turns and a strong gallop, only to catch one rail for four faults in the jump off. Leahy, of Maple Plains, Illinois, was the only junior rider to make the jump off and adds another top finish to her impressive resume. Leahy has been Junior Jumper Circuit Champion at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), won the Junior Jumper Style Award and won the Low Junior Jumpers at the Washington International Horse Show. She also competed on the Irish team in the Children’s Nations Cup during WEF this past winter and has earned multiple championships in the junior jumpers on horses such as trainer Steve Schaefer’s Caribe and Laura Steffee’s Bloesem. Leahy trains with Schaefer at Bellis Show Jumping Stables.
“That was really fun,” smiled Leahy. “He was amazing!”
Leahy’s mother, Heidi Schmidt Schaefer, who also rides, was excited but a nervous wreck watching the trip.
“It’s exciting, but that’s my baby out there!” exclaimed Schaefer. “Watching her makes me so nervous because she’s so brave! I know the horse will take of her though.”
Another young Chicago professional, Lauren DiTallo of High Finance Farm in Gurnee, Illinois, navigated her large strided horse, Wadisson, to a clear jump off round and stopped the timers at 39.445 for third place. DiTallo recently purchased Wadisson over the winter and showed him to several clear rounds during the HITS Ocala circuit. She was a National Top 12 Finalist in the USHJA EAP Program in 2009, 2010 and 2011 and has been a professional since then. DiTallo also rides her horse, Totally Wicked, in the 1.30m division.
Chicago’s Charlie Jayne of Our Day Farm in Elgin, Illinois, piloted his horse Playboy to sixth place with another blazing time of 36.987, but also caught a rail adding four faults to his final score.
Riders have more chances to earn the blue ribbon as the Spring Spectacular continues for two more weeks of exciting Midwest competition. Complete class results are listed below.
$30,000 Marshall & Sterling Grand Prix Results
1. Morocco Lisa Goldman Lisa Goldman $9,000.00
2. Undine Benchmark Stables, LLC Liz Atkins $6,600.00
3. WADISSON High Finance Farm Lauren DiTallo $3,900.00
4. Bachelor4 Messenger Hill Freddie Vazquez $2,400.00
5. Esquilino BayBellis LTD Caelinn Leahy $1,800.00
6. PLAYBOY Charlie Jayne Charlie Jayne $1,500.00
7. S & L Elite MTM Farm Dorothy Douglas $1,200.00
8. CONDESA Z Jill Knowles Jill Knowles $900.00
9. Dulf Van Den Bisschop Pony Lane Farm Gia Rinaldi $900.00
10. ESPIRIT DE VIE Messenger Hill Farm Freddie Vazquez $600.00
11. Everything Pony Lane Farm Kelsey Thatcher $600.00
12. Centurion B Mary Goldman Lisa Goldman $600.00