Jimmy Torano Wins $75,000 Great American Insurance Group Grand Prix Presented by Alliant Private Client at Lake Placid Horse Shows
Jimmy Torano rode Chewbacca HCC to the win in the $75,000 Great American Insurance Group Grand Prix Presented by Alliant Private Client on Sunday at the 2023 Lake Placid Horse Shows (LPHS) Sponsored by Bainbridge Farms, LLC, and Presented by Sea Shore Stables, LLC.
Awarding more than $600,000 in prize money, the Lake Placid Horse Shows run June 27-July 9, highlighted by the $75,000 Great American Insurance Group Grand Prix Presented by Alliant Private Client on Sunday, July 2; the $75,000 Richard M. Feldman Grand Prix Presented by Kadley Farms on Saturday, July 8; and the $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby Regional Championship North presented by Eastern Hay and Grain and Purina Animal Nutrition on Sunday, July 9.
In Sunday’s Grand Prix, only four of 23 entries qualified for the jump-off by riding clean over the 16-effort, first-round course designed by Nick Granat. None of the first three could master the 9-jump, jump-off course with the best score turned in by Alex Matz, who won the class in 2021 on Cashew CR. He finished with four faults in 45.790 seconds on Iluminaty MBF. Torano, who won the class in 2017 on Chiara Blue Diamond, then claimed the win with a clean round in the jump-off’s fastest time of 45.251 seconds.
“Nick is a very good course designer, and he built a tough course. He uses the hills as a bit of a weapon and everything rides a little bigger than what they’re set at,” Torano said. “I’ve got a horse with a lot of experience and a lot of scope; he’s very brave and it’s actually quite easy for him. I’ve also ridden here for a lot of years, and I’m really very comfortable out here on the hills.”
Finishing third was Sarah Scheiring on Anibale De Hus. Fourth went to 17-year-old Mia Bagnato, the youngest rider in the class, on Ballyoskill Big Bucks.
Prior to the Grand Prix, Alexa Elle Lignelli rode Fayuri AWR to the win in the Mirror Lake Inn Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic, a member event of the Show Jumping Hall of Fame Jumper Classic Series. Seven horses reached the jump-off, and Lignelli claimed the win with the fastest clean ride in the jump-off, finishing in 33.489 seconds. Charlotte Murray placed second with a clean ride in 33.935 seconds on Magnum Z and Jaime Auletto was third with a clean ride in 34.540 seconds on Dynamite.
In the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby presented by Lukens Horse Transportation, J.J. Torano matched his father’s win by taking top honors in the Junior/Amateur Division on Carry On. Come Monday, owned and shown by Nicole Lindquist, won the Open Division. Also in the Hunter ring, Josselyn Mersereau and Persey won the 3’3” Qualifier for the New England Horsemen’s Council (NEHC) Junior Hunt Seat Medal Finals.
Sunday’s activities also included the Big Z’s Hangout Lead Line Class and the Saratoga Horseworks Parade of Champions which recognized division champions from throughout the week.