Sandra Zimmerli and Calido’s Treasure on their way to a $25,000 HITS Grand Prix win.
Culpeper, VA (April 25, 2017): The first week of the 2017 HITS Culpeper Show Series commenced last week with the Commonwealth National, April 19-23. Many talented equestrians descended on the Commonwealth Park showgrounds to compete in a week-long extravaganza of elite hunter/jumper competition.
Sandra Zimmerli Zips to the Top in $25,000 HITS Grand Prix at HITS Culpeper
Sandra Zimmerli of Fairfax Station, Virginia, rode to top the field in Sunday’s $25,000 HITS Grand Prix aboard Calido’s Treasure, owned by Zimmerli Show Jumping, LLC. The victory marked her first grand prix win.
“This is my first Grand Prix win. Just this year I started competing in the regional Grand Prix with [Calido’s Treasure], and we’ve only done five of those classes with some top finishes, but this time it just all came together,” said Zimmerli. “I liked the course, it was a good mix of 1.40m and 1.45m fences, and it was straightforward for the most part with some appropriate questions.”
First to return to the ring for the four-horse jump-off was Tracy Magness piloting Intenz Van HD, owned by Mr. and Mrs. John Bartko. Magness won the $15,000 Johnson Horse Transportation Prix on Friday. They set down a clean round right out of the gate, stopping the clock in 38.59, eventually giving them third place and claiming another top five ribbon at HITS Culpeper.
Following Magness was Debbie McCarthy Connor riding Zim, owned by Connor & Ebetino Jumpers. Connor had been second to Magness in the Johnson Horse Transportation Prix and valiantly chased Magness’ round as they powered toward the finish. They would touch down past the timers with no faults, but their time of 39.91 was not quite quick enough to move up the leader board, settling them in fourth.
Zimmerli powered through the jump-off as the third contender in the four-horse jump-off. She galloped her victorious mount to the win in 36.42, two seconds ahead of the currently leading time. Zimmerli and Calido’s Treasure were fifth in the Johnson Horse Transportation Prix earlier in the week, and they made their exciting climb to the top on Sunday with an undoubtedly great ride to finish out the week on top.
“There was an option to do seven or eight strides to the triple combination and I chose the seven, I thought that would be the most challenging part of the course for my horse because he has a big stride and is not as tight in the front end,” said Zimmerli. “Looking ahead, I want to continue to develop this horse and hopefully compete in a few national Grand Prix, and my goal would be to qualify for U25 finals at the end of the year.”
There was only one more trip left in the jump-off, Harold Chopping riding Basje, owned by Kendra Bullington. They clocked in at 37.76, sealing the victory for Zimmerli and securing the second-place prize.
Competition returns to HITS Commonwealth Park during the Showday National, July 5-9. For a prize list, please click here.
$15,000 Johnson Horse Transportation Prix
All of the top three competitors are no strangers to the winners circle at HITS, but only one claimed the crown in Friday’s Prix. Tracy Magness of Baltimore, Maryland, took home the top honors in Friday’s Johnson Horse Transportation Prix at HITS Culpeper in an exhilarating class. The win came aboard Intenz Van HD, owned by Mr. & Mrs. John Bartko.
Following Magness in the ribbons was Debbie McCarthy Connor riding Zim, owned by Connor & Ebetino Jumpers, LLC. Third place went to Harold Chopping and Basje, owned by Kendra Bullington.
For the complete results, please click here.
$2,500 Devoucoux Hunter Prix
Hunter exhibitors turned out for the first week of qualifying opportunities in Virginia for the Diamond Mills Hunter Final in Saugerties, New York, this September at the HITS Championship. Harold Chopping of Southern Pines, North Carolina, took home not only first place, but also the second place prize in the two-round classic. First place came aboard Curuba, owned by Amy Nolan. The red ribbon came with Gold Rush, owned by Doreen Schlicht.
Falls Church, Virginia equestrian, Taylor Morrison, scored the third place prize piloting Tuscan Sky, owned by Mackenzie Ennis.
Fourth place went to Liam, owned by Katie Eppinger and ridden by Jill Curtis. Rounding out the top five was Danny Mahon riding his own mount, Double Identity.
For a complete list of results, click here.
$1,500 Platinum Performance Hunter Prix
Amy Lloyd Thompson of Chester Springs, Pennsylvania, walked away victorious in the $1,500 Platinum Performance Hunter Prix last weekend at HITS Culpeper. This victory came aboard Thompson’s own ride, Paramount. Thompson and Paramount have secured dozens of top finishes in the Platinum Performance Hunter Prix throughout the seasons at HITS.
Second in the ribbons went to Zues, ridden by Victoria Walton of Hampstead Maryland, and owned by Patricia Walton. Third place was Fortissimo, ridden by Christina Covarrubias from Eldora, New Jersey.
Claire Cognac of Masontown, West Virginia, took home fourth place honors piloting Opium.
For the complete results, please click here.
Look forward to more features at Culpeper! Click here for a Prize List.
Winston National | August 16-20 | Premier / 4* – Featuring the Zone III Jr. Equitation Finals
Constitution Classic | August 23-27 | Premier / 4* – Featuring the USHJA Jumper Team Championship Zones III & IV
$25,000 HITS Grand Prix at HITS Culpeper
|Place||Horse||Owner||Rider||Prize||R.1 Faults||J.O. Faults||J.O. Time|
|1||Calido’s Treasure||Zimmerli Show Jumping, LLC||Sandra Zimmerli||$7,500||0||0||36.42|
|2||Basje||Kendra Bullington||Harold Chopping||$5,500||0||0||37.76|
|3||Intenz Van HD||Mr. & Mrs. John Bartko||Tracy Magness||$3,250||0||0||38.59|
|4||Zim||Connor & Ebetino Jumpers, LLC||Debbie McCarthy Connor||$2,000||0||0||39.59|
|5||Farfelu du Printemps||John Madigan||Julia Madigan||$1,500||8||–||–|
|6||Duncan||Makayla Barta||Jill Henselwood||$1,250||8||–||–|
|7||Chopper 5||KW Mahon, Inc.||Danny Mahon||$1,000||12||–||–|
|8||Contefino 6||Caroline Russell Howe & Lisa Tolnitch||Harold Chopping||$750||16||–||–|
|9||Canmore 2||Cantatu, LLC||Ann DeMichele||$750||16||–||–|