Week three of the FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival concluded with an exciting $50,000 CSI 2* Grand Prix held Sunday, Jan. 27 on the grass derby field at the Stadium at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center.
The class saw a win for U.S. rider Brianne Goutal and Remarkable Farms LP’s Onira in a four-horse jump-off. Todd Minikus and Macoemba finished second, Laura Kraut and A. Lebon’s Jubilee d’Ouilly came in third, and Luis Larrazabal aboard Anabel Simon’s G&C Sacramento placed fourth.
Uliano Vezzani of Italy was the course designer for week three’s international show jumping competition in Wellington. In last Sunday’s $50,000 CSI 2* Grand Prix, Vezzani set the track on the beautiful grass field for 46 competitors and only four were able to clear the course without fault. The bogey fence, a tall wavy-plank vertical off of a tight left-hand turn came down for the majority of competitors, but there were many other rails around the course as well.
Jumping off, Laura Kraut and Jubilee d’Ouilly were the first pair to attempt the short course for the tie breaker and had that bogey fence down (although the top rail had been replaced with a straight pole) for four faults in 36.01 seconds and earned the third place honors. Luis Larrazabal and G&C Sacramento were up next and made it to the last fence on course before dropping a rail for four faults in 38.90 seconds, which placed the duo in fourth. Todd Minikus and Macoemba followed and went for the clear round in a slower pace of 40.60 seconds, which eventually finished second. Last to go, the pressure was on for Brianne Goutal and Onira to go clear and fast. They jumped without fault and galloped through the timers in 38.96 seconds for the win.
Seventeen-year-old Onira, a KWPN gelding, is a longtime experienced partner for Goutal. The pair has earned many wins together around the world over the past 11 years, and the rider knew that she could count on her horse to give it his all this afternoon.
Goutal has had a great year with many top placings for her horses and is now off to a great start for the winter circuit.
“It has been really good year,” she said. “My horses are all going really well. I have a great team of people with me and a great group of horses as well. It seems that everything has kind of aligned for me just not to mess it up so much. For the moment, everything is going better than planned.”
The Winter Equestrian Festival features 12 weeks of competition that conclude on April 1. More than $6 million in prize money will be awarded through the circuit.
For full results, visit www.showgroundslive.com. The Palm Beach International Equestrian Center is located at 14440 Pierson Road, Wellington.
For more information, visit www.equestriansport.com or call (561) 793-5867.
Above: Brianne Goutal aboard Onira. PHOTOGRAPHY BY SPORTFOT PHOTO