McKayla Langmeier Leaves it all in the Ring to Open Great Lakes Equestrian Festival

McKayla Langmeier (USA) isn’t letting the level of international competition intimidate her in Traverse City. Out of 29 entries, she claimed the win with Bahira S in the $37,000 San Marcos Training CSI3* Speed Classic, clocking in two seconds faster than any other clear effort.

Mckayla Langmeier and Bahira S. Photo © Andrew Ryback Photography

Over the past year, McKayla and the 12-year-old Oldenburg mare (Balou Du Rouet x ) have been getting to know each other and moving up the ranks in FEI competition. Thursday’s speed class was built for the occasion, providing a preview of the competition to come at the 2022 Great Lakes Equestrian Festival (GLEF), presented by CaptiveOne Advisors. The track, set by Mexico’s Catsy Cruz, featured opportunities for tight inside turns, long lines with options to leave strides out, and several tricky fences that came down frequently as the field whittled down.

Twenty-third in the order of go, Langmeier, a professional rider out of her family’s Kelianda Farm in East Granby, CT, used her mare’s natural footspeed to her advantage. She didn’t take any extreme risks, but her efficient pace and quickness through the air put her in the top spot, setting the Twydil Time to Beat at 61.28 seconds for the field to catch.

Mckayla Langmeier and Bahira S. Photo © Andrew Ryback Photography

Second to last in the order, Ireland’s Simon McCarthy gave Langmeier a run for her money, but came up just short with Gotcha, owned by Rock Ridge Farms, in a clear effort with a time of 63.45 seconds. Livestream 2 and Lisa Carlsen (CAN) rounded out the top three in 64.78 seconds.

“We just moved up to this height starting in Florida,” Langmeier said of her experience with the mare owned by Rafferty Farm LLC. “She took me a while to get used to because she’s so bloody and has so much power. She’s really strong, so we had to take it slow and build the relationship.”

Simon McCarthy and Gotcha. Photo © Andrew Ryback Photography

With several other mounts in her string, Langmeier will aim Bahira S and Mimosa VD Rollebeek for the $37,000 Innovo CSI3* Welcome Stake Friday and compete several up-and-coming mounts in national classes.

“I have to say, ever since the first year we came here it’s been a stop of ours,” Langmeier commented on Flintfields Horse Park. “It’s such a nice venue. They do an amazing job with the facility here. It’s so clean, the footing is great, and there’s so much to do outside of the horse show that makes it such a popular spot.”

Lisa Carlsen and Livestream 2. Photo © Andrew Ryback Photography

Currently atop the CaptiveOne Advisors Leading Jumper Rider Bonus is Beat Mändli (SUI) after accumulating bonus points from his win on the final day of Traverse City Spring, presented by Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel. While he starts a European tour this summer, Margie Engle (USA) sits just behind him looking to retake her lead during GLEF.

Action continues in the Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel International Ring of Friday with the $37,000 Innovo CSI3* Welcome Stake where athletes will ride to qualify for Sunday’s $138,600 Meijer CSI3* Grand Prix.

Final Results: $37,000 San Marcos Training CSI3* Speed Classic

1. BAHIRA S: 2010 OLD mare by Balou Du Rouet
MCKAYLA LANGMEIER (USA), Rafferty Farm LLC: 0/61.28

2. GOTCHA: 2011 HOLST mare by Stakkato x Cassini I
SIMON MCCARTHY (IRL), Rock Ridge Farms: 0/63.45

3. LIVESTREAM 2: 2010 OLDBG gelding by Lordanos x Landadel
LISA CARLSEN (CAN), Lisa Carlsen: 0/64.78

4. DAMZELLE STE HERMELLE: 2013 SF mare by Upercut Kervec x Paladin Des Ifs
LACEY GILBERTSON (USA), Seabrook LLC: 0/65.05

5. MADIBA AG Z: 2012 ZANG mare by Mylord Carthago x Corland
CHRISS PRATT (CAN), Ashley VogeL: 0/66.20

6. IDEAL: 2012 SWB gelding by Cardento x Cortez
TANNER KOROTKIN (USA), Castlewood Farm Inc. & Sandalwood Farms: 0/66.30

7. CORNET’S CAMBRIDGE: 2012 OS gelding by Balou Du Reventon x Cambridge 8
NICK DELLO JOIO (USA), The Berry Group LLC: 0/66.40

8. CARISSIMO 25: 2013 HOLST gelding by Cascadello x Clinton
MAVIS SPENCER (USA), Georgy Maskrey-Segesman: 0/66.70

9. IMPOSSIBLE DREAM: 2013 KWPN gelding by Cardento x Peter Pan
KELLY ARANI (USA), Marigot Bay Farm, LLC: 0/67.85

10. CHESS: 2011 BWP gelding by Bufero Van Het Panishof x Latano I
NICK DELLO JOIO (USA), Wembley Farms Inc.: 0/69.09

11. ASTON DES ETISSES: 2010 SF gelding by Mylord Carthago x Quidam De Revel
MARGIE ENGLE (USA): Gladewinds Partners, LLC: 0/69.64

12. EKARLUS BH: 2009 KWPN gelding by Namelus R x Orame
MAVIS SPENCER (USA), Rocking D Ranch: 0/70.06

Cormac Hanley Captures the Win in the Brook Ledge 1.20m Jumper

Amongst professionals, amateurs, and juniors in Thursday’s Brook Ledge 1.20m Jumper division, it was Cormac Hanley and the 7-year-old P-Flor-V.H. who took the victory. Over two phases, the pair jumped clear and snagged the quickest jump-off time in 33.227 seconds, over one second faster than any other combination.

Cormac Hanley and P-Flor-V.H. Photo © Andrew Ryback Photography

“He’s a seven-year-old gelding I got at the start of the summer from a good friend of mine, Neil Fern,” the Irish rider said of P-Flor-V.H, owned by Glynn Way Sport Horses. “We are just producing him along. I think a lot of him; he’s going to be a very good horse in the future to jump some big classes. I’ve been competing him in the 7-year-old classes. He’s been jumping very well and producing a lot of clear rounds and then these few weeks I decided to focus on teaching him to go a bit faster against the clock at the lower height so it’s easier for him. He seems to be coping with it quite well so I’m quite happy with him.”

The ride was very strategic, despite taking the horse down a level. Hanley omitted strides and cut turns tightly, allowing the horse some experience with speed in a horse show environment. “Since it is a smaller height I’m being more particular about it with him,” Hanley continued. “I’m asking a little more from him and being a little more precise on my turnbacks and leaving out some strides. It was nice and smooth and that’s what you want to be doing in jump-offs. Hopefully, when the jumps get a bit bigger he’ll be able to do the same thing and remember this is how we do it and it’s easier for him.”

Second place honors went to Classe De Virton and Katie Hawes in 34.367 seconds, while Sydney Berube aboard It Takes Two for Plain Bay Sales placed third in 34.454 seconds.

“Traverse City is fantastic,” Hanley said of his return to Michigan. “The facilities here are excellent. It’s a nice circuit; you can start them a bit smaller with less pressure and bring them along because it goes on for a number of weeks. I was able to jump him in the [Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel International Ring] yesterday in the 1.20m, which was a great experience to be able to jump a bit smaller in height in an impressive ring like that. It’s a busy show and there are a lot of people here. It’s good for business to bring these imported horses here to make some connections and hopefully get a few sold.”

Final Results: Brook Ledge 1.20m Jumper

1. P-Flor-V.H. / Cormac Hanley / Glynn Way Sport Horses / 0/0/33.227
2. Classe De Virton / Katie Hawes / Katie Hawes / 0/0/34.367
3. It Takes Two / Sydney Berube / Plain Bay Sales / 0/0/34.454
4. Despina 70 / Courtney Miller / Tally Nathan / 0/0/37.527
5. Elliot Van’t Hooghemelrijk / Hanna Dolan / Juan Pablo Gnecco / 0/0/37.914
6. Calando / Jennifer Hodgson / Jennifer Hodgson / 0/0/38.380
7. Wow 5 / Katharina Gebauer / Crooked Willow Farms / 0/0/39.511
8. Olito ETC / Kirsten Coe / Equine Trading Company / 0/0/40.026
9. Cigale De Riverland / Katie Uloth / Eva Mackenzie / 0/0/40.180
10. Pippa Blue / Samantha Gajoch / Michelle Gajoch / 0/0/41.296
11. The Points Guy / Shawn Casady / Rabbit Root Stables LLC / 0/0/43.469
12. Eldorado / Kyra Russell / Foxwood Farm / 0/0/45.856