Wellington, FL (February 13, 2020) – Turf Tour Week 5 and the first day of Week 6’s competition crowned two Rising Star Classic champions and hosted exceptional show jumping and hospitality at venues To-Kalon Farm and Jim Brandon Equestrian Center. Welcoming horses and riders at all levels from the .80M to the Grand Prix, the back-to-back Wednesday shows drew competitors and spectators to enjoy Wellington’s utopian equestrian settings, rare wines, and the horse-centric show experience The Ridge Turf Tour is known for.
Napa Valley inspired To-Kalon Farm, owned by second generation vinter Jeremy Nickel, transformed its sweeping polo field into two rings of show jumping during Turf Tour Week 5. Dotted by brightly colored jumps in courses designed by Argentina’s Jaime Morillo, the exceptional grass footing at To-Kalon and other venues has become the trademark of the Turf Tour, one of the only shows in the world where all levels can experience jumping on the grass. February 5th’s $5,000 1.30M Rising Star Classic saw Ireland’s Willie Tynan and KEC City Limits best the field, galloping across the grass and through the timers to victory. Tynan, riding for Red Barn Farm out of Boston, has been one of the Turf Tour’s most decorated riders, and for his Rising Star win at To-Kalon Farm was awarded a magnum bottle of The Vineyard House’s rare Cabernet Sauvignon. Second in the To-Kalon Rising Star went to Luis Larrazabal riding for San Francisco Stables aboard Alonzo Z, and third to Kim Farlinger and Stanley Stone of Sher-Al Farm.
Due to Friday’s inclement weather, the second day of competition at To-Kalon Farm was unfortunately cancelled, but the Turf Tour returns to Wellington’s Napa Valley Week 9, March 4-6! To- Kalon will also host an open to the public wine and cheese tasting in the farm’s beautiful Napa inspired estate during their Week 9 Turf Tour.
Kicking off Week 6, Wednesday’s $5,000 Rising Star Classic saw more than 25 horses and riders jumping over a course designed by Olympic and FEI designer Leopoldo Palacios. Jim Brandon Equestrian Center’s spacious warm ups, exceptional all weather arenas, and hassle free trailer parking are a welcome change of pace for competitors on Wellington’s winter circuit. A busy day marked by warm breezes brought victory in the Rising Star for Alvaro Tejada and Clark Palo Blanco, who’s exceptionally fast jump off time was hotly contested but never beaten. A first round double clear by Richard Neil and Electra set the mark at an already fast jump-off time of 30.851 seconds. Not long after, Tejada and Clark Palo Blanco swept through the timers in 29.963. Multiple combinations powered through Palacios’s jump-off, whipping around turns and galloping down bending lines, gradually bumping Neil and Electra into 6th place but unable to match Tejada’s time. With the top 6 horses all within a second of each other’s times, the tight jump-off put Gianni Gabrielli with Chaco 34 into second on 30.035 and Tegan Elizabeth Tracy with Colorado into third on 30.362.
Friday the Turf Tour continues at Jim Brandon with the $15,000 1.40M Turf Tour Grand Prix, and all levels of show jumping beginning with the .80M!
About the 2020 Wellington Turf Tour, Hunter Derby Days, USEF Equitation Tuesdays, and The Ridge Schooling Shows
The 2020 Wellington Turf Tour features 12-weeks of hunter, jumper, and equitation competition at all heights and prize money classes including weekly $15,000 1.40-1.45M Grand Prix and $5,000 1.30M Rising Star Classics, all held at beautiful venues around Wellington. This year’s destinations include The Ridge’s home farm, Black Watch Farm, To-Kalon Farm, and Jim Brandon Equestrian Center. In 2020, The Ridge will donate $10 for every horse entered in the 2020 Turf Tour to the Kevin Babington Foundation.
USEF Equitation Tuesday runs each Tuesday afternoon at The Ridge’s home farm (14415 Palm Beach Point Blvd) featuring pony equitation, adult equitation, junior equitation, and Medal Maclay. New this year for the Equitation Tuesdays, unrecognized hunter divisions and Marshall & Sterling Classics!
The Turf Tour and its hunter/jumper/equitation events are a unique addition to Wellington’s winter circuit, offering riders top-tier competition, generous prize money, and an unparalleled atmosphere. Young horses and advancing riders are able to test their mettle in classes ranging from junior and amateur jumpers to the Grand Prix, and at a variety of venues reminiscent of the large European tours. Organized by US Olympic show jumper Nona Garson and George D’Ambrosio, the vision that inspired the tour’s conception was to stage competitions on turf and natural surfaces away from the intensity of other show grounds.
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