Vivian Yowan and Sandstone Score Success in the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby During Saratoga Classic I

Vivian Yowan and Sandstone Score Success in the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby During Saratoga Classic I

Vivian Yowan and Sandstone bested a field of 36 competitors to win the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby, presented by Dover Saddlery on Friday, June 16, 2023, during World Championship Hunter Rider (WCHR) competition at the Saratoga Classic I, held during the 25th anniversary of Saratoga Horse Shows, at White Hollow Farm in Stillwater, NY.

Yowan of Darien, CT, and Sandstone navigated the first-round course with ease to score a 93, which put the pair in second place going into the handy round. Yowan and the 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding by Ice Cream On Top laid it all out in the second round, showing off Sandstone’s rideability and impressive jump. Their stylish trip earned a high score of 96, giving them a total of 189 to sit atop the leaderboard by 10 points.

“I felt like I had nothing to lose,” said Yowan of her plan for the handy round. “There were definitely some nice options with inside turns, so I just went for it. He loves these classes, and he loves to show off.”

Not only did Sandstone have a successful afternoon in the derby ring, the gelding also won a blue ribbon earlier in the day with owner Sara Hogan in the irons.

“He showed with Sara in the Low Adult Hunter division,” explained Yowan. “I think he loves doing his job with both of us. He goes around with his ears pricked forward all the time. He always wants to please and win. He is always going to do his job in the ring, so it’s just up to you.”

Macquarie Simon piloted her own Call Me Cool to a total score of 179 to claim second-place honors in the class. Third place was awarded to Cecilia Perry and her own Tiesto with a final score of 177.

Charlise Casas of Wellington, FL, and Jocko, owned by Kent Farrington LLC, flew to the win in the 1.30m Jumpers, sponsored by Postage Stamp Farm Foundation. The pair raced through the timers in 68.564 seconds to take home the blue ribbon.

“I have the ride on Jocko for the summer,” said Casas. “I’m hopeful that we will step him up into some national grand prix classes later in the summer. He is a really competitive horse and tries to do his best. He’s very fast on his feet, so it is a lot of fun across the ground and in front of the jumps. On the ground, he’s like a puppy and has a very sweet personality. It’s great because he is competitive, but you can also cuddle with him.”

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