Sydney Shulman’s past couple of years has been less like a roller coaster, and more like a whole theme park. In 2016, she’d just acquired a new top horse in Dutch Warmblood mare Wamira when the two had an accident that resulted in a broken hip for Sydney and several months off for Wamira.
The two slowly rehabilitated together, and they came back in May to win the $40,000 speed stake at Devon. Last month, Sydney garnered one of the biggest wins of her career with Curby du Seigneur when she scored victory in the $25,000 Hagyard Challenge in Lexington in a 15-horse jump-off.
And it seems the good rides keep rolling in for the up-and-coming professional, who has already scored two victories at the American Gold Cup.
On Wednesday, Sydney managed to find the sweet spot with both her winning horse, Villamoura in the $8,000 Danbury Porsche Audi 1.40m class as well as the third place slot aboard Hannah Patten’s Curby de Seigneur.
Thursday, she did it again with a win in the $2,500 1.35m jumpers aboard Venice, proving there’s a lot to be excited about in her current string.
Sydney takes her time building her horses up and letting them determine their pace: Venice has been in her string since early 2015, and Curby and Villamoura both came her way about a year ago, as well.
“This was the first U.S. show I showed her in last year. She won the 1.10m!” said Sydney after winning yesterday. “We’ve come a long way for sure. We took it really slow this winter. We knew she had the jump in her. We just focused on slowing her down, fixing the rideability, the control and the style of jumping. It’s nice to see how far she’s come in a year. We kind of use this horse show as a mark of her progress.”
The anniversary is all the more meaningful because Old Salem Farm is right in Sydney’s neck of the woods, making her a bit of the hometown hero at American Gold Cup.
“To me, this is my home show. I live about 25 minutes from here so we love it. I thought the course rode great today. It was a really nice use of the hills. You had to really test your rideability up the hill in the first line. It was a really great course and a lot of fun out there.”
As for the rest of the week, Wamira is dabbling in the FEI classes, and Villamoura will take on the Hermès Sellier Classic on Saturday, her biggest test yet.
“I didn’t show that much this summer so they’re very ready to be here. I didn’t go to the Hamptons for the first time so the last show they did was about a month ago in Kentucky. I feel like they’re really ready to go and jumping well.”
Best of luck to Sydney and her team this week – may your hot streak continue!