Traverse City, Mich. – Sept. 3, 2021 – Show jumping competition returned to the Jumper Annex Ring Friday morning with the Brook Ledge 1.20m Jumper. With a field of fierce competitors of all ages battling it out around Andy Christiansen’s expertly designed course, there was no shortage of excitement. The first to take the ring, Sydney Shelby (USA) and Never Ever 2, ultimately produced the quickest jump-off time to win Friday’s class in a time of 66.420 seconds, as well as take home champion in the Brook Ledge 1.20m Jumper division.
The course, which featured Christiansen’s technical combinations and long approaches, required riders to put their skills to the test in order to advance to the immediate jump-off. The 10-obstacle track with a time allowed of 72 seconds, proving to be a challenge for multiple riders as they knocked rails down on their race home. As more riders took their turn at the course, fellow competitors observed and knew to adjust their horses’ strides accordingly to avoid making the same mistakes. In a test of agility and quickness, athletes took the course in hopes of claiming victory.
Shelby, aboard Never Ever 2, a 12-year-old Holsteiner gelding owned by Catherine Chicotka, was the pathfinder for the class, focused on a precise and fault-free round. With their careful approach, the duo was able to pilot the track successfully, allowing the pair to move on to the immediate jump-off round. With zero time faults incurred in the jump-off round and quick time of 66.420 seconds, Shelby and Never Ever 2 ultimately maintained their lead for the remainder of the class to take the win. Shelby spoke highly of her new partnership with Never Ever 2 and looks forward to continued success in the jumper divisions.
Eric Navet (FRA) and Tizian 79, an 8-year-old Warmblood gelding owned by Signe Ostby, were second to enter the ring. With his eyes on a careful and speedy round, Navet quickly maneuvered through the course, remaining balanced and composed. Navet and Tizian 79 fell just shy of Shelby’s leading time, putting the duo in second place as they finished on zero faults with a time of 72.749 seconds.
Knowing he had to complete a fault-less round for a shot at the top of the class, Nicholas Pongracz and Arius, an 11-year-old Selle Francais gelding owned by Victisa LLC, took a cautious approach to their ride. Navigating the course with ease to advance on to the jump-off, the pair gave it their all in the ring, trailing just behind Navet for a third-place finish after incurring one fault,finishing in 72.875 seconds.
Jumper competition will continue Saturday at 8:30 am in the Jumper Annex Ring with the 5-Year-Old USHJA YJC and will conclude in the afternoon with the 1.10m Jump for Kevin.
FROM THE WINNERS CIRCLE
Sydney Shelby – Brook Ledge 1.20m Jumper winner
On Never Ever 2:
“The horse I have right now is Never Ever 2. I actually recently just got him. This is my fourth show with him and I’m leasing him. I’m super excited for our partnership and I’m looking forward to what’s to come.”
On her ride:
“I thought the course was really good. I think that the hardest part was between fence 6 and 7. They wanted you to go inside the end jump instead of just around and I felt like a lot of people just went around, so I just tucked inside there nice and easy and was good on the time allowed.”
On Traverse City:
“I’ve actually never been here. This is my first time in Traverse City so I’m super pumped and it’s such a beautiful facility. All of the people are great, the rings are amazing and the course designers are awesome.”
On Future Plans:
“I’m just here for two weeks. I have the [USHJA Young Jumper Championship] with my trainer next week and then we head back to California. With a new trainer and a new horse there’s been a lot of changes so my goal is for [FEI North American Youth Championships] this year and possibly the next two years.”
Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / Faults | Time
1. Never Ever 2 / Sydney Shelby / Catherine Chicotka / 0 | 66.420
2. Tizian 79 / Eric Navet / Signe Ostby / 1 | 72.749
3. Arius / Nicholas Pongracz / Victisa LLC / 1 | 72.875
4. Halifax Des Rosiers WB / Samantha Mackenzie / Samantha Mackenzie / 2 | 73.632
5. Conquest / Devin Milan / Garo Kazan / 0 | 63.969
6. Kandahar / Chris Ewanouski / Amanda Cain / 4 | 68.153
7. Queen / Roberto Teran / Rocking Basilisk Farm LLC / 4 | 69.833
8. Girabell / Chris Ewanouski / Napinday Horse Sales Inc. / 3 | 74.400
9. Starfighter / Cathleen Driscoll / Donald Stewart / 10 | 77.533
10. Neville / Ed Copeland / John Wolff / Withdraw