Great American Summer Continues with $200K Great American Grand Prix & Children’s Hunter Pony Finals at HITS Saugerties

Week V of the Great American Summer Series, presented by Alliant Private Client, featured the third $200,000 Grand Prix of the Series, sponsored by long-time HITS Partner Great American Insurance Group.  The week also featured a $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, World Champion Hunter Rider Week and HITS Children’s Hunter Pony Finals.

“We are so pleased and proud to have Great American as a strong sponsor and supporter of HITS Shows,” said Tom Struzzieri, President and CEO, HITS Inc.  “To have Great American as the title feature sponsor of the Saugerties Summer Series and of this Grand Prix is a testament to their commitment to owners, riders, trainers and everyone involved in equestrian sport.”

Mario Deslauriers on Amsterdam 27. Photo by ESI.

Mario Deslauriers has been knocking on the door with 3 top-ten finishes so far this Series at Saugerties, and on Sunday, August 2, he and Amsterdam 27 were unbeatable in the $200,000 Great American Insurance Group Grand Prix.  Deslauriers went late in the jumpoff, and with only one rider clear so far, he knew a careful but efficient trip was needed to take the blue.  He used the position to his advantage and laid down a beautiful ride trip in a time of 38.708 for the win.  In second place galloped Adrienne Sternlicht and Just a Gamble [39.400], and Todd Minikus took third place with Amex Z [4-Faults, 35.840].

In addition to Great American’s title sponsorship of the Grand Prix this week, Hylofit presents to every Sunday’s Grand Prix winner at HITS Saugerties one of their cutting-edge Heart Monitoring Systems.

Great American Summer Series V began with the $5,000 HITS Open Welcome on Wednesday, July 29 where Kyla Makhloghi and Hurry Up claimed the top spot in a time of 46.448.  Laura Chapot and Little Firebird took second place [46.914], and Jonathan McCrea and Fantasy BB took third [54.727].

Devin Ryan topped the field in the $10,000 HITS 1.40m Jumper Classic on Thursday, July 30 aboard Cooper, clearing the jump-off in a time of 37.117.  Chapot and Out of Ireland took second place [37.590], and Chapot also took third place on another mount, Gideon [39.460].

McLain Ward on Contagious. Photo by ESI.

Securing top honors in the $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix was McLain Ward for his ride aboard Contagious. The pair crossed the timers in a commanding 41.286, beating the field by nearly a whole second and taking home the win in Friday’s Grand Prix.  Peter Leone piloted LS Donner to second place [42.091], and Ryan took third with Caspar’s Lasino [44.527].

Coco Fath took the top spot in the $10,000 Saugerties Steamboat Co. Jumper Classic aboard Gaucho in a time of 40.278.  Chapot rode Calafornia to a second place finish [40.715].  Mary Manfredi and Magnus Orfeo took third place [40.747].

Friday afternoon, July 31, featured the $3,000 Pony Hunter Derby sponsored by Summit Farm and Eastern Hay. The blue ribbon was awarded to Sylvie Tadikonda and Thistle, earning the high score of 86.  Finley Baras and Goldhill’s Arresting Charm took second place [85.5], while Eleanor Pieters took third place with Rumple Minze [85].

Taking home top honors in the $1,500 Platinum Performance Hunter Prix were Kathryn Haefner and Creme De La Creme with scores of 85 and 88, for a two-round total of 173.  In second place were Alexa Bayko and Canoletto [171.5].  Mariel Saccucci and Tibri’s Alibi took third place [169.25].

The Grand Prix Stadium was transformed into a Derby Field on Saturday afternoon, August 1 for the Final Round of the HITS Children’s Hunter Pony Finals and the USHJA National and International Hunter Derbies.

Hannah Isop on Sincerely. Photo by ESI.

Adding to her already successful summer at HITS-on-the-Hudson was Hannah Isop, as she made her way to first and second in the $2,500 USHJA National Hunter Derby. The victory came aboard Sincerely with scores of 96 and 92 for a cumulative score of 188.  Her second place mount was Cue the Blue [186].  Heather Caristo-Williams and United Colors rounded out the podium to take third place [185.5].

Next up was the final $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby at the Great American Summer Series. With the high score in both the Hunter Classic round and the Handy Hunter round, it was Amanda Steege who took home the blue ribbon in the prestigious class. Steege piloted Lafitte De Muze to scores of 192 and 216 for an overall score of 408. Isop took second place with Red Ryder [395], as well as third place with another mount, Clem Brecourt [393].

Week V of the Great American Summer Series was host to the HITS Children’s Hunter Pony Finals, which is held over two days of competition consisting of a Model (20%), Under Saddle (30%) and an Over Fence Class (50%). A Champion is awarded for each size; small, medium and large, and an overall Grand Champion is awarded to the high score pony of all the sections.  Winners were:

  • Small Champion: Jenna Bach and Follow the Blue Follow the Blue [75.5]
  • Medium Champion: Rose Kouzoujian and Wait N See [77.4]
  • Large Champion: Anastasia Klyashtorny and I Spy a Rainbow [78.9]
  • Grand Champion: Klyashtorny and I Spy a Rainbow
Additional Jumper Highlights:
  • $2,500 M&S Children’s High Jumper Classic: Cody Rego and Cen
  • $2,500 M&S Adult High Jumper Classic: Kimberly Corts and Fidel Cavaro
  • $1,000 Harcour M&S Children’s & Adult Jumper Classic – Low: Morganne Young and Da Vinci
  • $250 M&S Modified Children’s & Adult Jumper Classic: Alyssa Bauer and HJ Soberano
  • $2,500 Jr/A-O/Am 1.25m Jumper Classic: Taylor Lampert and Cheers Van Overis Z
  • $5,000 Pyranha Jr/A-O/Am 1.35m Jumper Classic: Jamie Auletto and Dynamite
  • $7,500 Jr/A-O/Am 1.45m Jumper Classic: Amy Shafmaster and Umbrella Ter Ulgen Z
Additional Hunter Highlights:
  • $1,000 Eastern Hay Amateur-Owner 3’3″ Hunter Classic: Auletto and Idolize
  • $1,000 Amateur-Owner 3’6″ Hunter Classic: Jean Sheptoff and Verdict
  • $1,000 Junior 3’3″ Hunter Classic: Raina Swani and Stately
  • $1,000 Junior 3’6″ Hunter Classic: Caroline Cole and Galway Blazer
  • $1,000 Perfect Products Pony Hunter Classic: Anais Dufresne-Powell and Rollingwoods Stickler
  • $500 M&S SmartPak Adult Hunter Classic: Angelina Dileo and Demarco
  • $500 M&S Child Hunter Classic – Horse: Dylan Bentley and Focto
  • $500 M&S Child Hunter Classic – Pony: Isabella Roman and Cacique
  • $250 M&S Bit O’ Straw Hunter Classic: Alexis Asch and Caraibe
  • M&S Novice Adult Hunter Classic: Nancy Mullady and Tibri High Hopes
  • M&S Novice Child Hunter Classic: Caroline Sordoni and Doc Holiday
  • Short/Long Stirrup Hunter Classic: Wyatt Rofey and Trademark

For full class results, click here.  This summer, during the Great American Summer Series, presented by Alliant Private Client, every ring continues to be live streamed every day, and videos will be archived and accessible for a full year at

HITS thanks exhibitors for continuing to comply with the health and safety measures being implemented including, social distancing, wearing of masks, and hand washing. As the Great American Summer Series continues, please be sure you review all protocols outlined in the HITS Horse Show Protocol prior to your arrival at the show grounds.