Wellington, FL – February 20, 2016 – Competition on the derby field at The Stadium at The Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) kicked off on Saturday morning with the $10,000 Artisan Farms U25 Welcome, sponsored by EnTrust Capital, during week six of the 2016 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF). The speed track set by Richard Jeffery (GBR) saw 71 starters with a win for 16-year-old Lucy Deslauriers and Hester. The pair completed the fastest of 17 clear rounds in 60.73 seconds.
Madison Goetzmann and her own Wrigley took second place honors in a time of 62.37 seconds. Allison Toffolon and Toffolon Partners’ Gatsby finished third in 62.68 seconds. Emily Moffitt and Poden Farms’ For Sale 6 clocked in fourth in 62.86 seconds. Emma Heise and Old Willow Farms’ Viper Vrombautshoeve Z placed fifth in 63.91 seconds, and Eve Jobs and her own Sandor de la Pomme rounded out the top six with a clear round in 63.98 seconds.
Owned by Lucy Deslauriers’ mother, Lisa Deslauriers, Hester is an 11-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding by Wandor van de Mispelaere x Palestro. The pair has been partnered since 2014 and has earned many top accolades together.
Lucy Deslauriers in her winning presentation with ringmaster Christian Craig (Hamlet standing in for Hester). Photo: Sportfot
Speaking of her winning round on the beautiful grass derby field, Deslauriers stated, “It was tons of fun. I love when they bring us over to the field. It is definitely a different experience. We do not get to do it every week. I was fortunate enough that I did the same class with Hester last year, so I felt really confident coming in. I thought the course was a good test. Definitely the turn to the third jump tripped a lot of people up, but overall I thought it was a great course. It was a lot of fun with a lot of good galloping.”
Deslauriers drew an early spot, seventh to go in the order for the morning, and knew she had to set a big challenge with so many riders to come.
“Initially when I heard that I went so early I thought I was a little bit unlucky, just because there were so many great riders. There were 70-something (entries in the class), so I knew there were a lot of very fast riders coming behind me, like Maddy (Goetzman). I felt very confident in my horse. I knew that if I set the pace and tried to put the pressure on, his big gallop would help me out there, so I tried to use that to my advantage.”
Deslauriers has a great relationship with Hester, but there are always things to work on in every partnership, and Saturday’s class on the field gave her a chance to get some different experience with her mount.
“Definitely rideability is something I always keep in mind. He can get a little bit rowdy sometimes,” Deslauriers noted. “Even on course today, there were a few spots that I could have gotten him back sooner or been a little bit smoother, but overall he is very nice to ride and I am incredibly lucky to have him.”
Final Results: $10,000 Artisan Farms U25 Welcome, sponsored by EnTrust Capital
1. 2589 HESTER LUCY DESLAURIERS (USA) LISA DESLAURIERS: 0/60.73
2. 2628 WRIGLEY MADISON GOETZMANN (USA) MADISON GOETZMANN: 0/62.37
3. 2294 GATSBY ALLISON TOFFOLON (USA) TOFFOLON PARTNERS LLC: 0/62.68
4. 1822 FOR SALE 6 EMILY MOFFITT (USA) PODEN FARMS: 0/62.86
5. 1739 VIPER VROMBAUTSHOEVE Z EMMA HEISE (USA) OLD WILLOW FARMS INC: 0/63.91
6. 1155 SANDOR DE LA POMME EVE JOBS (USA) EVE JOBS: 0/63.98
7. 712 BIJZONDER LACEY GILBERTSON (USA) SEABROOK LLC: 0/66.09
8. 5386 ZEPHIRE HAYLEY BARNHILL (USA) BARNHILL LLC: 0/67.82
9. 1790 VON CIM ALEXANDRA CROWN (USA) ALEXANDRA CROWN: 0/68.10
10. 515 SHIVER LIZA FINSNESS (USA) LIZA FINSNESS: 0/68.14
11. 4832 WAHRHAFTIGE BEN ASSELIN (CAN) ATTACHE STABLES: 0/68.79
12. 3782 HUCKLEBERRY RACHEL REID (USA) RACHEL REID: 0/69.13