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Jef Lauwers and Calipso Claim Commanding Win in Pin Oak $30,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby

Jef Lauwers rode Calipso to the win in the $30,000 La Primera Hacienda USHJA International Hunter Derby. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

RINGSIDE WITH THE PLAID HORSE

BY EMILY RANDOLPH/RANDOLPHPR

Katy, Texas – April 9, 2021 – Jef Lauwers and Calipso earned a commanding victory in the $30,000 La Primera Hacienda United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) International Hunter Derby on Friday, April 9, at the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show in Katy, TX.

From a field of 23 entries, Lauwers and Calipso led from beginning to end of the two-round class, marking both a winning debut for Calipso in the horse’s first USHJA International Hunter Derby and Lauwers’ first International Derby win.

“It’s amazing. Pin Oak is one of the most special shows that we go to, so it’s always exciting to be here,” said Lauwers, who is based out of PJP Farm in Magnolia, TX. “It’s such a gratification to do well at this horse show.”

With scores in the first round of 85 and 88 from the two judging panels, coupled with four high option points added to each score, Lauwers and Calipso concluded the first round on a total score of 181. Going into the second round, Nada Wise and Vendetta Semilly sat in second place with scores of 86 and 82 plus two high option bonus points for a 172 total.

Jef Lauwers and Calipso. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

While Wise and Vendetta Semilly, owned by Royal Sport Horses, attempted to give Lauwers a run for his money in the handy round, the results would remain the same through to the end

“I saw Nada going into the ring, and she sliced a jump so well. It was unreal how she did it,” said Lauwers. “I don’t know how she did it! But then I was thinking, ‘Okay, she did the low options. I just have to get the high options done and make it smooth and make it great so it would all work out. I tried to just keep a smooth ride and make him jump the best that he can over those high jumps.”   

While Wise’s handiness would be rewarded, earning her a total second-round score of 185.5 for a 357.5 overall total, it wouldn’t be enough to catch Lauwers and Calipso.

With scores of 88 and 87, coupled with three high option bonus points and six handy bonus points from each judging panel, Lauwers and Calipso finished with a second-round score of 193 and an overall total of 374 for the win.

Finishing in third place with a total score of 356 were Frank Owens and Carrida, owned by DS Holdings LLC.

“[Calipso]’s just been amazing!” said Lauwers of the 7-year-old Holsteiner owned by Johnnie Martin-Carey. “We got him from Europe when he was six years old, and he was a stallion. We went through a lot, but we got better every day. He’s a really sweet boy. He loves his mom.

“Whenever he sees his mom [Johnnie Martin-Carey], he pulls up, and he’s like, ‘where are my bananas?’ said Lauwers. “Johnnie’s such a support and to have her as the owner for this horse is unbelievable.”

Nada Wise and Moonlight Mile. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

While Lauwers may have topped the USHJA International Hunter Derby, Wise did get her own derby win earlier in the day.

From a field of 35 entries, Wise rode Moonlight Mile, owned by Stacey Thompson, to the win in the $15,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby. Finishing in second place were Carlee McCutcheon and her own Explanation. Third place went to Lauwers and She’s All That, owned by Linda Yarborough.

Running through April 11, the 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show features three weeks of top hunter, jumper and American Saddlebred competition while benefitting the Texas Children’s Hospital. The third and final week continues through Sunday, with the featured $100,000 Pin Oak Charity Grand Prix beginning at 7 p.m. (CDT) on Saturday.

Learn more about the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show by visiting www.PinOak.org, and find the horse show on Facebook here. To purchase competition photos, visit www.AndrewRyback.com. For additional coverage throughout the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, follow The Plaid Horse on Facebook and Instagram

Daniel Bedoya Works Magic in $25,000 Walter Oil and Gas Pin Oak Grand Prix

Daniel Bedoya and Abracadabra WKT won the $25,000 Walter Oil and Gas Pin Oak Grand Prix on Thursday, April 8. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

RINGSIDE WITH THE PLAID HORSE

BY KRISTIN PITZER

Katy, Texas – April 8, 2021 –  Going into the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show’s $25,000 Walter Oil and Gas Grand Prix, held at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center on April 8, Daniel Bedoya’s plan with Abracadabra WKT was to take it easy and save the mare for the $100,000 Pin Oak Charity Grand Prix, to be held April 10. Abracadabra WKT, or “Abby,” had spent time the prior winter recovering from an injury, and he didn’t want to push the mare too much.

In a starting field of 28 riders, the pair, along with seven others, jumped a clean first round. They were second-to-last in the jump-off, and by that point, only one other horse-and-rider had jumped a clear round without a time penalty.

“Sometimes going at the end is an advantage,” Bedoya said. “I saw that I didn’t have to go flying, and it worked. I slowed down a little to the last jump. That almost cost me the class, but it was OK. The aim is still Saturday. If we won today, great; if we didn’t, it was fine.”

Daniel Bedoya and Abracadabra WKT. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

Bedoya and Abby jumped a clear round in 42.182 seconds, winning the class and a check worth $7,500. Bedoya said the mare feels great, and he has a good feeling about her going into the big grand prix at the end of the week.

Bedoya has been riding Abby for nine years. She was originally purchased by her owner, Monica Hanks, to be a hunter, but over the years, the mare made the switch to the jumpers.

“She was a very special hunter at the beginning, and then as she matured, she got hotter and hotter, and she didn’t like the job,” Bedoya said. “We decided one day to put her in the jumpers, and we never looked back. She started winning, and she’s won quite a few grand prix classes now.”

He added that the 13-year-old Holsteiner can be a bit temperamental and difficult to ride, but with such a long relationship together, he knows her well. He’s planning to take her to Tryon, NC, and to do a few more shows this year, and Bedoya then hopes to take her to the South American Games in 2022.

Bedoya thanked Hanks and her husband for being great friends, clients and partners, and added he is excited to start competing with their new horse, Quimi Del Maset. The Hanks purchased the 7-year-old Warmblood, who is a half-brother to Bedoya’s old grand prix horse, Quattro, to follow in Abby’s footsteps.

Daniel Bedoya and Abracadabra WKT. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

From Magnolia, Texas, Bedoya has been attending Pin Oak for more than 20 years. He enjoys having the prestigious show so close to where he lives.

“It’s always special to win at home in front of your friends and your family,” Bedoya said. “It’s been a great horse show. Pin Oak always does a great job.”

Colleen Acosta and Lancome took reserve after jumping a clean round in 44.060 seconds. The 2011 Belgian Warmblood mare collected $5,500 for owner L.O.O. LLC. Coming in third were Untouchable 32 and Joshua Tabor, who jumped a clear round in 47.792 seconds, and rounding out the top four with zero jumping faults and three time faults were Carvelo Z and Bree Garey with a time of 50.580.

The 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, which continues through April 11, features three weeks of top hunter, jumper and American Saddlebred competition, benefitting the Texas Children’s Hospital.

Learn more about the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show by visiting www.PinOak.org, and find the horse show on Facebook here. To purchase competition photos, visit www.AndrewRyback.com.

Klas Kudlinski Claims Top Two Spots in $20,000 Pin Oak Welcome Stake

Klas Kudlinski, pictured aboard NKH Darco Son, finished both first and second in the $20,000 Welcome Stake. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photograph

RINGSIDE WITH THE PLAID HORSE

BY EMILY RANDOLPH/RANDOLPHPR

Katy, Texas – April 7, 2021 – After only one day of competition, Klas Kudlinski has already made his inaugural trip to Texas a winning one. In Kudlinski’s Pin Oak Charity Horse Show debut on Wednesday, April 7, the 26-year-old German rider claimed both first and second place in the $20,000 Welcome Stake, sponsored by Bedoya Training Stables.

Kudlinski earned the top call aboard NKH Cento Blue and finished in a close second with NKH Darco Son, both owned by NKH LLC. Both horses are regularly ridden by Christian Heineking, but when the accomplished, fellow German rider broke his foot this winter, he called upon Kudlinski.

“He offered for me to come to his barn in Texas to show his horses a little bit as long as he’s out,” explained Kudlinski, who arrived in Texas last week, just in time to prepare for the third and final week of the 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show. “I’ve ridden both of the horses since just eight or nine days ago now. Our plan with both horses was actually just to do a nice round to get to know each other, so it makes me even happier that it turned out this way!”

Klas Kudlinski and NKH Cento Blue. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

The 11-year-old Oldenburg gelding, NKH Cento Blue, and 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood stallion, NKH Darco Son, were two of six combinations from the 17-horse starting field to advance to the jump-off. NKH Cento Blue’s winning time registered at 38.972 seconds, while a finish time of 39.581 seconds gave NKH Darco Son the second-place honor.

Third place with one rail down in the jump-off and a time of 32.147 seconds went to Brooke Peterson and Fast Flo. Rounding out the top four with four faults and a time of 32.352 seconds were Trapp O’Neal and Dollar Cash.

“Both [NKH Darco Son and NKH Cento Blue] are pretty experienced over this height with Christian,” said Kudlinski, who first came to the U.S. to compete with his own horses in 2020. “[NKH Darco Son] is a stallion, but I must say that his comfort and his rideability is just amazing. He feels like sitting on a couch. He does everything pretty easily. There’s not much that you need to take care of as a rider; you just basically show him where the fences are, and he does the rest. That’s my first show impression of him.”  

Klas Kudlinski and NKH Darco Son. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

Kudlinski continued, “I’m just really thankful and grateful that Christian and Neil [Knox], the horses’ owner, gave me the opportunity to ride such great, experienced horses. I think it’s a wonderful opportunity that they gave me, and one that’s not always so easy to find.”

While continuing to get to know both horses, Kudlinski will set his sights next on Thursday’s $25,000 Pin Oak Charity Grand Prix.

Running through April 11, the 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show features three weeks of top hunter, jumper and American Saddlebred competition while benefitting the Texas Children’s Hospital.

Learn more about the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show by visiting www.PinOak.org, and find the horse show on Facebook here. To purchase competition photos, visit www.AndrewRyback.com.

For additional coverage throughout the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, follow The Plaid Horse on Facebook and Instagram.

Mackenzie Hudson Headlines Amateur-Owner Jumpers at Pin Oak Charity Horse Show

Mackenzie Hudson and Ekyra Fortuna won the $5,000 1.30 m/1.40 m AO/Am. Jumper Classic on Saturday, April 3. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

RINGSIDE WITH THE PLAID HORSE

BY EMILY RANDOLPH/RANDOLPHPR

Katy, Texas – April 3, 2021 – Mackenzie Hudson rode her own Ekyra Fortuna to victory in the $5,000 1.30 m/ 1.40 m Amateur-Owner (AO)/Amateur (Am.) Jumper Classic on Saturday, April 3, to conclude Week II of the 75th Pin Oak Charity Horse Show.

Hudson was one of 19 entries to contest the first-round track set by course designer Bernardo Costa Cabral at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in Katy, TX. Of the 19 entries, four produced clear efforts to advance to the jump-off and three jumped double clear. The fastest of those three, Hudson stopped the jump-off timers in 26.519 seconds.

With a time of 27.309 seconds, second place went to Jacqueline Ruyle and her own Lucille, and a close third place with a time of 27.330 seconds went to Mikayla Linder aboard Chine van’t Schanshof.

“I have so much confidence with [Ekyra Fortuna], I was able to really let her go in the jump-off. She’ll do anything that I ask her to,” said Hudson of the 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood mare that she has now been partnered with for six years. “I was 15 when we got her, and she was six, so we’ve really come up together.”

Mackenzie Hudson and Ekyra Fortuna. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

While Hudson and “Ekyra” were previously jumping at the grand prix level, the pair took some time off during the COVID-19 pandemic and are now working their way back up the levels.

“This was our second time back in the 1.30 m,” explained Hudson, 21. “She was awesome. She definitely wants to go. In the first round, you really have to hold her back so that you can then in the jump-off, let her go and really go with it. She’ll leave strides out; she’ll add strides. She’ll do whatever you ask her to.”

Anna Marie Mayes and Balou Bailando. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

Hudson, who currently trains with her mother Lacy Hudson at Manor Equestrian in Austin, TX, has been attending the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show since she was six years old and looks forward to it each year.

“I showed my first large pony in the short stirrup here and have been coming ever since!” concluded Hudson. “I like that this show has everyone from Texas but then more. It really feels like a family community here. Everyone’s so inviting and so welcoming.”

Genevieve Munson and Charlene. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

In addition to the $5,000 1.30 m/ 1.40 m AO/Am. Jumper Classic, Saturday’s schedule featured a full line-up of both jumper and hunter classics. In the $5,000 1.30 m/1.40 m Junior Jumper Classic, the win went to Genevieve Munson and Charlene, and the $2,500 1.20 m Junior Jumper Classic victory went to John Gilpin and Arobase des Champs. Earning the win in the $2,500 1.20 m AO/Am. Jumper Classic was Anna Marie Mayes riding Balou Bailando. For full results, visit www.horseshowsonline.com.

While Saturday marked the conclusion of Week II of the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, competition resumes on Wednesday, April 7. Running through April 11, the 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show features three weeks of top hunter, jumper and American Saddlebred competition while benefitting the Texas Children’s Hospital.

John Gilpin and Arobase des Champs. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

Learn more about the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show by visiting www.PinOak.org, and find the horse show on Facebook here. To purchase competition photos, visit www.AndrewRyback.com. For additional coverage throughout the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, follow The Plaid Horse on Facebook and Instagram.

Peter Petschenig and It’s the Senator 111 are Number One in $50,000 Pin Oak Grand Prix

Peter Petschenig and It’s the Senator 111 won the $50,000 Hildebrand Fund Pin Oak Grand Prix. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

RINGSIDE WITH THE PLAID HORSE

BY EMILY RANDOLPH/RANDOLPHPR

Katy, Texas – April 2, 2021 – Peter Petschenig and It’s the Senator 111 claimed victory in the $50,000 Hildebrand Fund Pin Oak Grand Prix on Friday, April 2, at the 75th Pin Oak Charity Horse Show in Katy, TX.

A field of 22 horses contested the Week II featured event, with 10 entries advancing to jump-off over the Bernardo Costa Cabral-designed short course.

The second pair to return, Martien van der Hoeven and Morris Horta, set the early time to beat at 36.316 seconds, which would ultimately hold up for second place. Only Petschenig and It’s the Senator 111 delivered a faster clear round, stopping the clock at 35.925 seconds as the penultimate pair to return. Third place with a time of 37.304 seconds went to Matt Cyphert and his own Lochinvar.

“[Getting this win] is actually kind of surprising!” said Petschenig, who has had the ride on It’s the Senator 111 for the past eight months. “Usually, he can’t go fast because he’s a little bananas! He jumped fantastic. He can jump anything there is. He’s just super difficult. He needs way more work than anyone else. He’s just different, but he’s fun too.”

While Petschening is continuing to get to know the 13-year-old grey Belgian Warmblood gelding, everything came together on Friday night.

Peter Petschenig and It’s the Senator 111. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

 “This is the first time that everything worked the way that I wanted it to work. Since he’s so lunatic, I thought, ‘I can’t go fast anyway.’ I actually didn’t mean to go really fast at all in the jump-off,” continued Petschening. “I landed after the triple bar, and the six [stride option] was right there. Other than that, I just turned a little tighter than the other ones I assume.”

Since moving to Texas from California in 2017, Petschening has been a consistent top competitor at the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, and he looks forward to attending the three-week horse show each year.

“They do a super job in presenting the show,” said Petschening. “They put a lot of thoughts into small details, and the people are very nice here. It’s very a good cause too, and that’s the most important thing!”

Petschening will next aim It’s the Senator 111 toward the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show’s featured culminating event, the $100,000 Pin Oak Charity Grand Prix, to be held Saturday, April 10.  

Running through April 11, the 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show features three weeks of top hunter, jumper and American Saddlebred competition while benefitting the Texas Children’s Hospital. While Saturday, April 3 concludes Week II, competition resumes with Week III beginning on Wednesday, April 7.

Learn more about the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show by visiting www.PinOak.org, and find the horse show on Facebook here. To purchase competition photos, visit www.AndrewRyback.com.

For additional coverage throughout the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, follow The Plaid Horse on Facebook and Instagram.

Ilana Halpern and Prosecco Pick Up Win in Pin Oak $30,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby

Ilana Halpern piloted Prosecco to victory in the $30,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby on Thursday, April 1. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

RINGSIDE WITH THE PLAID HORSE

BY EMILY RANDOLPH/RANDOLPHPR

Katy, Texas – April 1, 2021 – Ilana Halpern of Lafayette, CA, rode Prosecco to victory in the $30,000 United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) Hunt & Go Format International Hunter Derby on Thursday, April 1, during Week II of the 75th Pin Oak Charity Horse Show in Katy, TX.

Halpern and Prosecco were one of 24 entries that first completed an eight-fence Classic Hunter Round set in one ring before immediately clearing a trot fence set between two connecting rings and continuing on to an additional six-fence Handy Hunter Round in the second ring.

In the Classic Hunter Round, Halpern and Prosecco earned dual scores of 83 from both of the two judging panels, and their performance only improved as they continued on. With scores in the high 80s from both judging panels in the Handy Hunter Round, coupled with three high option bonus points added to each judging panels’ scores in both rounds, the pair finished on an overall 349 total.

Second place with an overall score of 331.5 went to Caitlin Burns and her own Fila. Third place went to Frank Owens who rode Carrida, owned by DS Holdings, LLC, to an overall score of 326.

Ilana Halpern and Prosecco. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

“I’m so thrilled!” said Halpern, 34, who is competing at the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show for the first time. “I have been working with this horse for a little over three years now, and I love him and believe in him. I thought he was so excellent tonight. Not only was he great, but he finished stronger than he started. As the trainer and caretaker of the horse, that makes me feel especially good.”

Halpern rode Prosecco, an 11-year-old Holsteiner gelding owned by Devin Lanzone, to second place in the $30,000 USHJA International Hunter during Week I of the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, and she has spent the past week working on the gelding’s fitness.

“One of the things that we talked about strategy wise last week was that maybe he was a little bit lacking in fitness for the handy,” explained Halpern. “So, I’ve been really flatting him and taking advantage of the bit of warmer weather to build him up a little bit. I felt like it cooled off today, and as a result, his fitness showed.”

In addition to spending time working on Prosecco’s fitness this past week, Halpern has also been the horse’s primary caregiver, something she says plays to her advantage in the saddle.

“When Craig [Starr] and I travel to shows with primarily our own horses, as long as the number of clients isn’t too large, we do like to groom our own horses from an economic standpoint,” explained Halpern. “And, to be very honest, it’s a joy! [Prosecco]’s a very careful, cautious horse. For him to jump at this level, it takes a bit of encouragement and nurturing, I think grooming him myself has been wonderful for that. I feel like I know everything that’s happened in his day, and I know where he is mentally and emotionally. With a sensitive horse, that’s so incredibly important. I’m just really proud of him, not just for this class, but for the entire time we’ve been here.”

For Halpern, who originally hails from Buffalo, NY, the major victory at the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show is the realization of a lifelong dream.

Ilana Halpern and Prosecco. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

“Since I was a little girl, I would see that Jennifer Alfano always came here, and she always won the Derby,” said Halpern. “I always wanted to be exactly like her. I still do! I just really, really wanted to make it happen….For this to turn into an opportunity for this horse and for his confidence, it couldn’t have been better!”

Running through April 11, the 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show features three weeks of top hunter, jumper and American Saddlebred competition while benefitting the Texas Children’s Hospital. Week II continues through Saturday, with competition highlights including Friday night’s $50,000 Pin Oak Charity Grand Prix, sponsored by the Hildebrand Fund.

Learn more about the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show by visiting www.PinOak.org, and find the horse show on Facebook here. To purchase competition photos, visit www.AndrewRyback.com.

For additional coverage throughout the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, follow The Plaid Horse on Facebook and Instagram.

Daisy Ford Dashes to Victory in $25,000 Heroes For Children Grand Prix

Daisy Ford and Gatsby. Photo © Andrew Ryback Photography

RINGSIDE WITH THE PLAID HORSE

BY EMILY RANDOLPH/RANDOLPHPR

Katy, Texas – March 31, 2021 – Daisy Ford earned her first grand prix win only a month ago, and on Wednesday, March 31, she returned to the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in Katy, TX, to do it again. This time the 19-year-old and her own Gatsby topped the $25,000 Pin Oak Grand Prix, sponsored by Heroes for Children, during Week II of the 75th Pin Oak Charity Horse Show.

With the $10,000 Under 25 Grand Prix, sponsored by Leaving One Out, LLC, held concurrently, Ford was also automatically named the winner of the featured U25 class.

“I’m so excited! Gatsby’s really come through this year in a big way, and I’m really, really proud of him,” said Ford of the horse that she first began competing in the children’s jumpers seven years ago. “It pays off when you’ve had a partner for seven years, for sure! You know exactly what they’re thinking.”

The solidity of the pair’s longtime partnership was particularly evident over Wednesday’s jump-off track. Nine entries from the 28-horse field qualified to come back and contest the short course set by course designer Bernardo Costa Cabral, with Ford returning in the penultimate position.

Daisy Ford and Gatsby topped the $25,000 Heroes For Children Grand Prix on Wednesday, March 31. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

When Ford and Gatsby entered the ring, the time to beat had been set at 33.183 seconds by Carlee McCutcheon, the winner of the $30,000 Pin Oak Charity Grand Prix held just four days prior. With fast foot speed from Gatsby, slick turns and strides left out throughout the course, Ford quickly toppled that time to stop the clock in 32.470 seconds.

Martien van der Hoeven and Morris Horta, owned by Luccirelli International, LLC, were the final pair to return. As they crossed the final fence, it looked as though they may have the win. However, the clock stopped just tenths of a second shy of Ford’s time, giving van der Hoeven the second-place honor with a time of 32.793 seconds. McCutcheon and her own MTM Fortunate finished third.

“I have a super quick, careful horse, and I knew I could leave out strides in a few places because I have such a big step with him,” said Ford of the 15-year-old Oldenburg gelding. “I got lucky, and everything came up the way that I was hoping it would.”

While Ford and Gatsby make it look easy today, their partnership was not always that way.

Daisy Ford and Gatsby. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

“It didn’t start off easy for me with him,” explained Ford, who trains with Alexandra Ansteth at Augusta Pines Farm. “He’s a very powerful horse, and he’s got a really hard jump. That was my hardest thing to get used to with him. Probably my first big win with him was at Pin Oak two years ago when I won the Under 25. That was my first grand prix that I jumped clean, and to come back and win the actual grand prix just two years later feels pretty amazing!”

Running through April 11, the 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show features three weeks of top hunter, jumper and American Saddlebred competition while benefiting the Texas Children’s Hospital. Week II continues through Saturday, April 3, with remaining feature events including a $30,000 United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) International Derby on Thursday and the Hildebrand Fund $50,000 Pin Oak Charity Grand Prix on Friday night.

Learn more about the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show by visiting www.PinOak.org, and find the horse show on Facebook here. To purchase competition photos, visit www.AndrewRyback.com.

For additional coverage throughout the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, follow The Plaid Horse on Facebook and Instagram.

A Winning Welcome for Avery Erickson at Pin Oak Charity Horse Show

Avery Erickson and Chacco Lait by Andrew Ryback Photography

RINGSIDE WITH THE PLAID HORSE

BY EMILY RANDOLPH/RANDOLPHPR

Katy, Texas – March 30, 2021 – Avery Erickson, 19, and Chacco Lait won the $15,000 Open Jumper Welcome Stake to mark the start of Week II of the 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show on Tuesday, March 30, in Katy, TX.

With the $5,000 Under 25 Welcome held concurrently with the Open Jumper Welcome Stake, Erickson also automatically claimed victory in the U25, marking her second consecutive U25 Welcome win. During Week I of the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center, Erickson and Chacco Lait took the top spot in the U25 Welcome and finished in second in the Open Jumper Welcome Stake.

“[Chacco Lait] feels like he’s on a roll!” said Erickson, of her 14-year-old Oldenburg gelding. “He’s really giving me all he’s got, and he feels great, so I’m really happy with him.”

Avery Erickson and Chacco Lait. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

Erickson and Chacco Lait were one of five entries to produce a fault-free first round and one of four to jump double clear, but none would come close to catching their jump-off time of 34.805 seconds. Second place with a time of 37.583 seconds went to Jordan Gilchrist and her own Happyboy van de Doornakkers. Finishing in third with a time of 40.626 seconds were JJ Atkinson and Golden Cassini.

“I just wanted to have a nice, smooth pace through the jump-off,” said Erickson, who trains with Britt McCormick of Elmstead Farm. “He just was on it all the way. He’s got a big step even though he’s a little guy. So, I did six in the last where most everyone was doing seven.

Michael Tokaruk and D’Almgravin. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

“He’s very quick across the ground,” continued Erickson. “In the jump-off, I can kind of let him go and get a good canter, and I know he’s going to be fast. He’s very careful, so as long as I get him there, I know he’s going to try his best.”

Erickson and Chacco Lait will next contest Wednesday’s $25,000 Pin Oak Grand Prix, held concurrently with the $10,000 U25 Grand Prix.

Until then, Chacco Lait can likely be found napping in his stall.

Jordan Gilchrist and SerpicoPhoto by Andrew Ryback Photography

“His favorite thing to do is to go take naps,” said Erickson, who also makes sure that the gelding gets out for lots of trail rides around the Great Southwest Equestrian Center. “He’s always laying all the way down in his stall just napping and relaxing.”

Also earning jumper victories in the Kirkland & Ellis Main Ring on Tuesday were Michael Tokaruk, Jordan Gilchrist and Craig Starr. Tokaruk and D’Almgravin topped the 1.25 m Open Jumpers, while Gilchrist and Serpico won in the 1.40 m, and Starr and Christian Dior were best in the 1.35 m. 

Running through April 11, the 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show features three weeks of top hunter, jumper and American Saddlebred competition while benefitting the Texas Children’s Hospital. Week II continues through Saturday, April 3, with feature events including the $25,000 Pin Oak Grand Prix on Wednesday, a $30,000 United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) International Derby on Thursday and the Hildebrand Fund $50,000 Pin Oak Charity Grand Prix on Friday night.

Craig Starr and Christian Dior. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

Learn more about the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show by visiting www.PinOak.org, and find the horse show on Facebook here. To purchase competition photos, visit www.AndrewRyback.com.

For additional coverage throughout the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, follow The Plaid Horse on Facebook and Instagram.

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