Lexington, Ky.- May 20, 2016 – Hunter Holloway showed her skills on Friday in the Kentucky Spring Classic, bringing home wins in both the hunter and jumper rings.
In the Medium Junior Jumpers, she took home the victory aboard Italia, a 7-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding with a time of 51.098 seconds, a full four seconds faster than second place finishers Ashley Hartman and Clear Lady.
It was a meaningful win for Holloway, who has done the majority of the training on the home-bred Italia. “It was pretty exciting, he is 7 years old and we bred him,” Holloway said. “Lisa Oliver broke him when she worked for us, but since then I’ve been the one on him. I did his first jumps, his first courses, everything. It’s pretty special now to have him moving up into the Medium Juniors. We were planning on having a nice, fast, smooth round,” she continued. “He stepped up to the plate great.”
After her win in the jumper ring, Holloway headed over to the Stonelea Ring and brought home a win in the WIHS Equitation Hunter Phase with Orion, a 12-year-old Westphalian gelding.
“The plan was just to have a nice round, we want to keep getting qualified for Finals here,” Holloway explained. “Orion is amazing; I don’t think he gets enough credit. He’s kind of the horse that does all the work, and then we pull Sunny out for Finals. Everyone knows Sunny and I as such a good pair, but no one ever realizes how good Orion is.”
She continued. “He’s the one that gets me qualified every year, that does all the work and he’s for sale this year and he’s a great horse, he’s a blast to ride.”
Holloway was enthusiastic about her first trip to the Kentucky Spring Classic. “This is actually my first time being here during the spring shows, she said. “It’s a beautiful facility they do a great job with the show and the management is great and the weather could be better but it’s been great.”
The Kentucky spring shows allowed for Holloway to spend more time in the jumper ring as well as continuing with the hunters. “This year our focus is more on the jumpers,” she explained. “Hopefully doing more of the FEI classes, my mom and I both, and trying to do more World Cup Qualifiers and more big classes.”
Madison Dehaven and Chanel brought home the win in the Low Amateur-Owner Jumpers for the second week in a row with a time of 24.013, a full two seconds faster than second placed Alexandra Duval and XM.
Dehaven was full of praise for Chanel, her 8-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare. “I was very happy with her today,” Dehaven said. “Everything kind of came up like I wanted it to. I’m really learning to ride her on a nice rhythm. She wants to go forward and gallop, and for me that was really hard to get used to.”
From the start, Dehaven made a plan that paid off in time saved. “I really liked the course, there were a couple challenging things for her,” Dehaven said. “In the jump-off, there was a right rollback and she’s a lot harder off the right. I would say that plank to the last fence was where I made up time. I had planned eight strides down the last line and we were in a nice gallop, I liked how I caught the plank and the seven was just there and I went and left out to the last oxer and she was really good.”
The Kentucky Spring Classic will continue May 18–22, 2016 with the $5,000 Hallway Feeds USHJA National Hunter Derby in the Stonelea Ring on Saturday May 21, 2016. It will also offer WIHS and NAL qualifiers plus $10,000 Show Jumping Hall of Fame Classics.
EQSportsNet will be streaming live webcasts of the $130,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix CSI3* during the Kentucky Spring Classic on Saturday, May 21. EQSportsNet Full Access subscribers can also watch all rounds of the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows series on demand at www.eqsports.net.
For more information about the Kentucky Horse Shows please visit www.kentuckyhorseshows.com.
Press Release by Sarah Harper