The final day of competition during Week 7 of the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival highlighted several FEI events in the International Arena as well as national hunter, jumper, and equitation competition throughout the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center. Both sections A and B of the ASPCA Maclay took to Ring 9 with upwards of 30 entries each. Section A awarded the first place to Abigail Lefkowitz and Top Saint Aubin, while Section B’s victory went to Ava Ellis aboard Campreoll.
In each section, the top 12 riders were invited to return for a test on the flat in which they were asked to remove their stirrups from the saddle before displaying control at the walk, trot, and canter.
“I thought it was good practice because I haven’t been asked to drop my stirrups yet in the weeks I have shown,” Ellis commented. “It definitely made me acknowledge it was something I needed to work on more.”
Ava Ellis and Campbell. Photo © Sportfot
Ellis said she’d hoped to come away with a smooth round as she felt the course suited her horse’s stride despite some of the harder questions the round asked.
“I liked the course because my horse has a super big stride, so all of the lines were nice and flowing. I saw some people getting in tight to the double across the middle and having to squeeze out of the line, so I was worried about catching that nicely, but with his big stride it ended up coming up easily.”
Ellis was aboard the 12-year-old Swedish Warmblood gelding Campreoll (Camarao M x Precis) owned by Missy Clark and North Run. Second place in Section B went to Eliza Kimball on Carly Hoft’s Cashman. Jennifer Staniloff and Sail Horse Investments’s Clover placed third.
Lefkowitz’s mount was a 12-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding that is owned by Don Stewart.
“He’s really the first horse I’ve ridden in the equitation that I’ve ever clicked with,” Lefkowitz explained. “I felt like from the minute I got him, I could finally work on myself because he’s always reliable and ready for me.”
Abigail Lefkowitz and Top Saint Aubin. Photo © Sportfot
Lefkowitz added that this is her first year attending the Winter Equestrian Festival. “I love it here so much,” she said. “It’s so busy and bustling that it feels like a horse country version of New York City! Everywhere you go has beautiful barns, and it is just such a horse-friendly environment.”
In section A, Farah Rizvi and Emma Callanan’s Jarinka took the second place ribbon and Savannah Hemby rode Ashland Farms’s Chacco Star to third place.