It was a first place finish for Todd Minikus of Lake Worth, FL and the Quality Group’s own Quality Girl last week during ESP Spring I at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL. Minikus and the 2003 Oldenburg mare bested a field of 27 horse and rider starts and were the ultimate victors in the $35,000 ProElite® Grand Prix on Sunday, April 8.
The class was the mare’s return from some time off over the winter season and Minikus intends to bring the mare back slowly before going full speed into the summer. “I didn’t think there was much sense in bringing her back just to show her in the last two weeks of WEF,” commented Minikus. “I thought I’d wait until post-circuit to bring her back. It’s nice money in these classes, so it was all good! We’ll let her get rolling again in these classes and then I expect some big stuff this summer.”
Guilherme Jorge (BRA) laid the week’s final track, which welcomed back ten to contest the jump-off. Minikus, who rode through the timers in 38.119 seconds, finished nearly two seconds ahead of second place finisher Emanuel Andrade of Wellington, FL, and his own Ricore Courcelle who finished in 40.148 seconds. Kevin Babington of Gwynedd Valley, PA, and Double O Seven 7 rounded out the top three, ending the jump-off in 41.141 seconds.
“She really went for it in the jump-off,” said Minikus. “I don’t want to sound pretentious, but there was nobody that was going to catch her. It was just one of those jump-offs where everything came up fast or I could move up to it. I never had to fix anything. It wouldn’t have made a difference who was there showing – Kent, McLain, whoever thinks they’re fast! It was one of those jump-offs where sometimes it works just right, and sometimes it doesn’t. This was one of those just right jump-offs. She was awesome!”
Competition will resume at PBIEC on Wednesday, April 11, with the second week of the ESP Spring Series continuing through Sunday, April 15. For more information please visit www.pbiec.com.