James Arkins Reveals a Star in $100,000 Hygain Feeds Grand Prix
James Arkins’ trip to Desert International Horse Park (DIHP) was a long one, but it was well worth it. Recently he relocated his top horse Eurostar 1 to the states, and following an appearance at the FEI World Championships, the pair took the number one spot in the $100,000 Hygain Feeds Grand Prix in the first grand prix event of the 2022/2023 season.
Not only was this the first Grand Prix of the National Sunshine Series, but it was also the first time Arkins had shown Eurostar since the World Championships in August. “I only got him back last week so this is our first time back in the show ring and to come out with a win is just incredible. I’m super excited,” the Australian rider reflected.
Alan Wade of Ireland set the track for the feature event of the week, welcoming 48 horse-and-rider combinations to attempt to navigate the tricky course clear. Of the starting entries, nine qualified for the short course, and Arkins had pole position of being second to last in the jump-off order.
Luis Goncalves, hot off his win in Thursday’s $30,000 1.45m Open Classic, set the pace with Vick Du Croisy, owned by Sigma Stables, in 37.066 seconds. It almost seemed he could not be caught, until Arkins and the 10-year-old Stallion (Diarado x Chacco Blue) managed to shave off nearly one full second and take the lead. Goncalves claimed second while Lorcan Gallagher and the Lost Lake Farm entry Copycat took third place in 37.433 seconds.
“I’ve had him since he was a 3-year-old and produced him the whole way through,” Arkins said of Eurostar. “We decided at the end of last year to bring him over to the [United States]; we thought we’d have a crack at trying to get him on the team for the World Championships. He’s just grown every show we’ve gone to and he’s just getting better and better.”
James Arkins Reveals a Star in $100,000 Hygain Feeds Grand Prix – Desert International Horse Park (deserthorsepark.com)