Bertram Allen Brings His Best in Adequan® CSI5* WEF Challenge Cup Round 9
Forty-four elite show jumping combinations contested the $78,000 CSI5* Adequan® WEF Challenge Cup Round 9 on Thursday at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF). The battle for the win pitted riders representing the nation of Ireland against one another but it was young professional Bertram Allen who raced to the lead with his experienced partner, Pacino Amiro.
Heavy-hitting course designer Alan Wade (IRL) produced another worthy challenge in the third of four five-star rated competitions during the Wellington Equestrian Realty-sponsored WEF 9 at Wellington International. After the completion of the first round, only three riders advanced to the jump-off. Darragh Kenny (IRL) produced the first successful effort early in round one and fellow countryman, Allen, quickly followed suit to ensure a jump-off. The two Irishmen would remain as the only successful contenders on the course until the USA’s Schuyler Riley piloted Robin De Ponthual into contention.
Kenny was the first to return as the first successful clear and he put the pedal down to gallop across the flowing jump-off course. Always one to watch in a jump-off, Kenny threw down the challenge with a double-clear effort that landed him across the timers in 38.65 seconds on the Vlock Show Stables’ 12-year-old Westphalian stallion Chic Chic. Allen’s advantage, however, came from being second in the lineup, and he dashed across the International Arena to shave a second off Kenny’s time and come home in 36.94 seconds.
“I’ve never seen a WEF Challenge here where only three were clear in the first round, so it was a much more tactical jump-off than normal,” stated Allen. “It was a huge advantage going after Darragh because I saw one or two places in his jump-off where I could get the better of him if I left the rails up.”
Allen and Aiden McGrory’s 11-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding (Pacino x NC Amiro) are well-versed in winning five-star competitions at WEF and have already pocket two victories this season.
“Pacino [Amiro] is an experienced horse now whereas he was only nine when he started jumping the five-stars here,” Allen continued. “He has developed and knows his job now, so we just keep him as fit and healthy as possible.”
Riley rounded out the top three with two unfortunate knockdowns in the short course on Katherin Gallagher’s Selle Français stallion.