Jennifer Gates and Alex Dominate U.S. Open $25,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Grand Prix

23. Sep 17 | 13:20 | By | Category: INTERNATIONAL NEWS

The U.S. Open $25,000 Hollow Creek Farm Under 25 Grand Prix captivated spectators to begin competition on Friday evening at the 2017 Rolex Central Park Horse Show and saw a speedy double clear victory for Jennifer Gates of Seattle, WA, and Alex, a 2004 Westphalian gelding (Arpeggio x Marilu) owned by Copernicus Stables LLC. The pair bested the class of 13 entries with a jump-off of 27.14 seconds.

“I thought that the first round was really well done,” commented Gates. “I was really happy with it. I thought Alex helped me out a bit in the first round, so I was really lucky to come in with him for the jump-off and be able to go that fast. I was trying to just come out and go as fast as I could, so I’m really happy with his performance tonight.”

The pair have been together since this past July, and this is Gates’ fourth show with her new mount. She explained, “I was very lucky to get the ride on this horse. He’s one of the coolest ones I’ve gotten to ride. He just goes into that ring and does his job. He’s such a sweetheart in the barn. I’m hoping to grow our partnership and work on being a bit faster.”

Sydney Shulman of Greenwich, CT,  and Curby Du Seigneur, a 2008 Belgian Warmblood gelding (Dore Van’t Zorgvliet x Victoria Du Seigneur), owned by Hannah Patten, followed in second place, crossing through the timers less than a second behind Gates to jump a clear final round in 28.08 seconds. Shulman has been training the gelding with owner Hannah Patten, but picked up the ride on him recently as a competition mount.

“Curby is a relatively new ride for me,” said Shulman. “I’ve seen this horse do some pretty amazing things with his owner, so I was feeling a little brave into the double. I think Jen beat me to number five. She caught a really good one there and I added an extra stride.”

Schulman joked, “Jen and I were talking earlier, and her horse’s one stride is my horse’s six. She definitely beat me there!”

Third place honors went to Jordan Coyle (IRL), and Chuckles, a 2008 Belgian Warmblood gelding (Cicero Z x Viola) owned by Andrew Kocher, navigating the short track in 26.98 seconds. “This horse is very new to me. I’ve only been riding him for about five weeks now. I’m very grateful to Andy [Kocher] for letting me take the ride on him,” he said.

Coyle is new to competing in the United States and has only been riding stateside since May. Moving forward, Coyle plans to compete Chuckles in Harrisburg, PA, before mapping out a competition plan for the pair in Wellington, FL.



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