Saving the most exciting event for last, the 2019 American Gold Cup, presented by CaptiveOne Advisors, LLC, hosted the prestigious class that awards its namesake Sunday, as some of the globe’s most decorated horses and athletes vied for the top spot in the $210,000 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ – New York CSI4*-W, presented by CaptiveOne Advisors, LLC, as well as the illustrious American Gold Cup. Coming off a recent streak of notable triumphs, Beezie Madden (USA) maintained momentum by piloting Garant, her young up-and-coming superstar, to another incredible finish to emerge as the class victors. Having won the feature contest twice previously, Sunday’s victory marked Madden’s return to the winner’s circle and the third time her name will be etched into the American Gold Cup trophy.
Beezie Madden and Garant. Photo by Phelps Sports.
Creating a course fit for the occasion, world-renowned designer Alan Wade (IRL) produced a 16-effort track set at 1.60m in height to be contested by the 40 entries who had qualified for the competition following their results in Friday’s $75,000 American Gold Cup Qualifier CSI4*, which was won by Shane Sweetnam (IRL) and Chaqui Z. Though the 79-second time-allowed proved to be a heartbreaker for three competitors who otherwise would have been clear, seven duos managed to master the track by leaving all the rails in the cups without time faults. Led by the USA’s Katie Dinan and Brego R’n B, penalty-free rides followed from Paul O’Shea (IRL) and Imerald van’t Voorhof, Nicki Shahinian-Simpson (USA) riding Akuna Mattata, Madden on Garant, Brian Moggre (USA) aboard MTM Vivre Le Reve, Devin Ryan (USA) with the reins on Eddie Blue and Karl Cook (USA) on Caillou. All told, the American contingent made up almost the entire pack, with only Ireland also represented by one finalist.
After a hard-fought initial round of riding, six of the seven qualified contenders opted to return, with Shahinian-Simpson electing to forego the jump-off. Shortened to only eight fences, Wade’s second design served to further whittle down the challengers, of which three ultimately produced foot-perfect trips. The early pathfinders, Dinan and Brego R’n B, owned by De heer A. Vos, set the pace for the short course with the first double-clean trip of the afternoon in 41.94 seconds. Third to return following a downed rail from O’Shea, Madden and Abigail Wexner’s 8-year-old Garant took to the ring with another American Gold Cup victory in their sights, and the pair lived up to expectations with a smart navigation around the pattern that stopped the clock in 40.89 seconds, one second faster than the previous frontrunners to propel to the top spot.
“He has a tremendous jumping talent which is not everything,” Madden shared about Garant. “He’s incredibly smart. He knows he’s not supposed to hit the fences and he seems to know how to run fast and jump high and I have no idea why. When we got him, Clark Shipley who works for us took care of him and he also took care of Authentic. He nicknamed this horse ‘Junior’ because – it has nothing to do with the way he looks or the way he jumps – his personality is a lot like Authentic. He is so intelligent and he has so much self-confidence.”
With Madden in the lead, the three final combinations each tried to eclipse her, but none would prove able to exceed her performance aboard Garant. Though Ryan and Eddie Blue turned in the swiftest ride in 39.87 seconds, the pair lowered a fence to incur 4 faults against them and keep them out of contention for the rosette. Last to take his chance, Cook piloted Signe Ostby’s Caillou to the second-best jump-off time of the prestigious class, tripping the timers in 41.25 seconds to capture the second place honors, while Dinan and Brego R’n B’s time held for the third spot on the podium.
“I have a young horse here and he has had a wonderful year,” Madden shared. “Our plan was to step him up this fall, so I went on Friday and he went so well that we decided to try him on Sunday. I wasn’t even sure I was doing this class when I came here this week, so for him to come thought like that today is amazing. A big thank you to CaptiveOne and Longines and the Morrissey family for making it all possible at Old Salem Farm.”
Madden’s win Sunday upped her recent collection of high-profile victories by one, adding to a growing list of impressive performances in only the past few months. Just one week ago on Sept. 8, Madden jockeyed Darry Lou to a stunning performance that bested the elite field in the $3 Million CP ‘International’ Grand Prix, presented by Rolex, at the 2019 Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ CSIO5*, one of only four Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping events. In July 2019, the veteran athlete won the Sparkassen-Youngsters-Cup at CHIO Aachen with Garant, a testament to the horse’s ever-increasing experience. No stranger to Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ competition, the New York-based rider has now won the event three times at the American Gold Cup, with the first two coming in 1989 and 2010. In 2013 and 2018, Madden reached superior status as the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final champion riding Simon and Breitling LS, respectively.
Having consistently earned the best results to accrue the most points in competitions offering $25,000 or more in prize money throughout the course of the week, Sweetnam was awarded the coveted CaptiveOne Advisors™ $15,000 Leading Rider Bonus following the conclusion of Sunday’s activities. His preeminent accomplishment of the week came in the $75,000 American Gold Cup Qualifier CSI4*, and he also clinched superb finishes in the $71,200 Fidelity Investments® Classic CSI4* and the $35,700 Staller Welcome Stake.
$210,000 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ – New York CSI4*-W, presented by CaptiveOne Advisors, LLC
Place / Horse / Athlete / Country / Owner / R1 Faults | Time / R2 Faults | Time
1. Garant / Beezie Madden / USA / Abigail S Wexner / 0 | 76.57 / 0 | 40.89
2. Caillou / Karl Cook / USA / Signe Ostby / 0 | 74.19 / 0 | 41.25
3. Brego R’n B / Katherine A. Dinan / USA / De heer A. Vos / 0 | 77.60 / 0 | 41.94
4. Eddie Blue / Devin Ryan / USA / LL Show Jumpers, LLC / 0 | 74.48 / 4 | 39.87
5. Imerald van ‘t Voorhof / Paul O’Shea / IRL / Tequestrian Farms, LLC / 0 | 76.45 / 4 | 42.22
6. MTM Vivre le Reve / Brian Moggre / USA / Major Wager LLC / 0 | 73.92 / 4 | 53.65
7. Akuna Mattata / Nicole Shahinian-Simpson / USA /Carol Rosenstein & Silver Raven Farms / 0 | 74.2 / WD
8. Quibelle / Georgina Bloomberg / USA / Gotham Enterprizes LLC / 1 | 79.02
9. Loughnavatta Indigo / Jonathan Corrigan / IRL / Horse Orchard LLC / 1 | 80.18
10. Dubai / Vasco Flores / PUR / SHL Farm / 1 | 81.32
11. Hester / Lucy Deslauriers / USA / Lisa T Deslauriers / 4 | 72.11
12. Carlchen W / Alex Granato / USA / Page Tredennick / 4 | 72.52