Coyle Gallops to Win the $30,000 Hampton Cassic 1.40m Jumper Challenge
Goutal-Marteau Takes Victory in $10,000 Marders Local Hunter Derby
Ireland’s Christian Coyle bested a field of 43 entries in the $30,000 Hampton Classic 1.40m Jumper Challenge to kick off the Hampton Classic Horse Show’s Open Jumper division on Sunday. He and Ma Pomme De Tamerville were the fastest of eight double-clear rounds, securing their victory in 37.975 seconds.
The Hampton Classic, August 27-September 3, is one of the world’s most prestigious horse shows, featuring competitors at every level from young children in leadline to Olympic, World, and World Cup Champions. The Classic also has competitions for riders with disabilities.
For the $30,000 Hampton Classic 1.40m Jumper Challenge’s winning-round format, Coyle’s countryman Alan Wade designed a winding 15-effort course to welcome the world’s top equestrians into the Hampton Classic Grand Prix Arena. Each of the 12 riders who returned to the jump-off put in faster rounds than the last, until Coyle and In Showjumpers’ 11-year-old Belgian Warmblood mare stopped the clock at 37.975 seconds.
“I thought Kelli’s (Cruciotti Vanderveen) time would be really tough to beat,” Coyle said. “But my horse is naturally fast, and sometimes I have to try to slow her down. Going late in the class, I knew what I had to do, and I thought if we could just get over all the jumps that we would have a good chance. I’m really happy with how today worked out. I like the winning-round format; it seems to suit me and my mare well.”
Cruciotti Vanderveen (USA) finished second with her time of 38.386 seconds aboard Forever SFN, Serenity Farm’s 13-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding. Rodrigo Pessoa (BRA) and Lord Lucio, Artemis Equestrian Farm LLC’s 12-year-old Holsteiner gelding, took third with their double-clear, 38.815-second score.
With this victory, Coyle takes an early lead in the $30,000 Longines Rider Challenge with 100 points. Cruciotti Vanderveen sits second with 80 points, while Pessoa holds third with 70 points. The Challenge, which awards $30,000 and a Longines watch to the rider accumulating the most points in the week’s Open Jumper classes, will be awarded Sunday following the $425,000 Longines Hampton Classic 5* Grand Prix.
In the well-manicured Aspinall Hunter Ring, 36 horse-and-rider combinations vied for top honors in Sunday afternoon’s $10,000 Marders Local Hunter Derby. After the top 12 returned to compete over the second-round handy course, Heartland came out on top with an outstanding score of 180 points. The 8-year-old Oldenburg gelding is owned by Sterling Equine LLC and ridden by Brianne Goutal-Marteau of Annapolis, MD.
“Heartland is a really nice horse,” Goutal-Marteau said. “He’s only eight years old, but he really stepped up to the plate and became a real contender. He’s got all the parts; he’s a beautiful mover, a beautiful jumper, and just a beautiful horse to look at. He’s a very classic Warmblood, and he went great today. (The Aspinall Ring) can be spooky with all the VIP seats and people on the side, but I thought his first round was really amazing. He got a 95, which was a big score, and we’re always happy to get those! The second round, I played a little safer as he’s still green and the ring had some shadows, but he came to the table again to secure the win.