(Long Island, NY) Kevin Babington of Ireland guided the young mare Shorapur to the fastest fault-free jump-off time (39.16 seconds) to claim the $250,000 Hampton Classic Grand Prix showcased by Land Rover in an exhilarating climax to the 39th Annual Hampton Classic.
Brianne Goutal of Manhattan rode Nice De Prissy to second place (0 faults/40.34 seconds) and Richie Moloney of Ireland rode Freestyle De Muze to third place with four faults in 44.26 seconds. Ramiro Quintana of Argentina guided Whitney to fourth place with 8 faults in 38.58 seconds. The Hampton Classic Grand Prix was an FEI-sanctioned qualifier for the Longines FEI World Cup Final in Las Vegas next April.
Socialite Joy Marks and TV Host Cognac Wellerlane pose for a photo-op at the 39th Annual Hampton Classic
Moloney’s third-placed finish was more than enough to put him on top in the $30,000 Longines Leading Rider Challenge for the second consecutive year earning three hundred points from the week’s ten open jumper classes. Fellow Irishman Darragh Kenny held on to the runner-up spot with 283 points. Quintana finished third (195) and Shane Sweetnam of Ireland finished fourth (177.5).
“It was nice to go into the jump-off and know that I’d done it already. I had a great week and winning the Longines award was a great way to finish it off,” revealed Moloney, of Wellington, FL.
TV Host Cognac Wellerlane interviews Socialite Joy Marks wearing Victor DeSouza Designs and Paige Paterson from Marders in Bridgehampton, NY at the Hampton Classic on Grand Prix Sunday.
Babington’s day ended better than it began: As the first rider in the ring at 8:00 a.m. for the 7/8-Year-Old Jumper Championships, he fell in the water jump. Since he was completely drenched with water, he had to wear his back-up jacket for the grand prix, the one missing the lowest front button. “Maybe I should start wearing this jacket for good luck,” he said.
Guilherme Jorge’s course proved considerably challenging to the 33 riders from five nations who attempted it. Jorge agreed with the three winners’ evaluation that the second half of the course was especially demanding. “It was certainly a long course, but I was very happy that the faults were spread out all over the course,” he revealed.
TV Host Cognac Wellerlane interviews United States Republican Peter King and Designers Maryszka and Toshiki Fukushimi on the First Day of the Hampton Classic.
Moloney led off the jump-off round in front of the 15,000 fans who surrounded the Grand Prix Ring, sitting in the grandstands, the VIP tents and the corporate chalets. He said that Freestyle De Muze, ten, is relatively inexperienced at this level of competition and isn’t a fast horse. Furthermore, he knew before the class that he only had to finish fourth to win the Longines Award, meaning he was guaranteed of that prize even if he was the slowest rider.
TV Host Cognac Wellerlane interviews Bonnie Comley and Dennis Susskind President of the Hampton Classic Horse Show on Grand Prix Sunday at the Hampton Classic in Bridgehampton, NY.
Ultimately he approached the shortened course conservatively. Freestyle De Muze knocked down only the second-last fence, the Longines oxer.
Quintana’s plan was clearly to better Moloney’s time and he manage to do this in perfect ease but at the cost of two rails. That left the door wide open for Babington.
TV Host Cognac Wellerlane interviews Gayle King at the Hampton Classic on Grand Prix Sunday at the Hampton Classic in Bridgehampton, NY.
“I had planned to go medium fast, even before I watched Richie and Ramiro go,” said Babington, who lives in Gwynedd Valley, Pa. “It was a careful jump-off-you had to jump all the jumps before you worried about your speed. But she’s naturally a very fast mare, so I can have a fast time without even trying.”
Goutal, 25, who has dual U.S. and French citizenship, said that she “didn’t want to go crazy fast, but I think I played it a little too safe.”
Babington said that this was the first 1.6-meter grand prix for Shorapur, 9, and that he’d only decided to enter her, instead of another horse, after she’d done a $10,000 class in the Grand Prix Ring on Friday. “I thought she felt a little too brave over those smaller jumps and that it was time to move her up,” he said.
TV Host Cognac Wellerlane interviews Coleen Rein, Morgan Rein, and Gary Rein and Designer and Restaurant Owner B. Smith at the Hampton Classic on Grand Prix Sunday in Bridge Hampton, NY.
For 30 years, the Hampton Classic benefited from the guidance of equestrian manager Steve Stephens. Earlier this year, Stephens announced his retirement from the Hampton Classic and he was honored by the show’s staff in a center-ring ceremony before the start of the $250,000 Hampton Classic Grand Prix.
After a successful career as a grand prix rider, Stephens established himself as one of the leading course designers in the world. He was also the proprietor of Stephens Equestrian Designs, specializing in the design and manufacture of jumps for competition. All the jumps in the Grand Prix Ring, featuring many of the show’s sponsors, were designed and built by Stephens Equestrian Designs.
Designer and Restaurant Owner B. Smith poses for a photo-op with TV Host Cognac wellerlane at the 39th Annual Hampton Classic.
In addition to managing the Hampton Classic, Stephens served as manager of the Winter Equestrian Festival and the National Horse Show. It was because of Stephens that the Hampton Classic has achieved its position as one of the premier horse shows in the world.
In 2013, the USHJA honored Stephens with its Lifetime Achievement Award and earlier this year he was inducted into the Show Jumping Hall of Fame.
Stephanie Danhakl of Pacific Palisades, CA, rode her horses Golden Rule and Enough Said to first and second places in the $10,000 Hermes Junior/Amateur-Owner Hunter Classic, the final hunter class of the 39th Annual Hampton Classic.
Danhakl, 27, rode Golden Rule, ten, to the first round’s top score, an 88, and returned in the second round to score an 82. Since her two horses were the last two to perform in the second round, it meant she’d already clinched first place with Golden Rule when she returned on Enough Said, 8. But she galloped and jumped him to the best second-round score, an 86. Golden Rule’s score of 82 gave him a total of 170, guaranteeing that Danhakl had won the class because the only horse left to go was Enough Said.
“When I went in the second time on Golden Rule, I was a little nervous, and I don ‘t usually get that way. So I rode a little defensively. I was basically trying to not lose,” Danhakl revealed. Enough Said’s total of 165 points put him second in the 33-horse field. “I wasn’t nervous at all for Enough Said’s round-I didn’t have any pressure on me! I figured I’d go out there and just have fun,” she said.
Danhakl didn’t come all the way from California just to ride in the Hampton Classic. She’s pursuing her master’s degree in art history at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia and trains with Scott Stewart and Ken Berkley.
“I love it here at the Hampton Classic. It’s been a great show for me-I love being able to gallop over the grass rings. There aren’t many shows that have grass rings like this anymore,” she said.
Enough Said won the Amateur-Owner Hunter (3’3″), 18-35, Championship, and Golden Rule won the Amateur-Owner Hunter (3’6″), 18-35, Championship.
Other hunter awards presented were:
- Grand Hunter Champion: Ovation/Victoria Colvin
- Leading Hunter Rider: Scott Stewart
- Best Junior Rider: Victoria Colvin
- Leading Junior Equitation Rider: Michael Hughes
- Hunter Groom Award: Antonio Aguilar
The Hampton Classic, which ran Aug. 24-31, features six show rings, a Boutique Garden with more than seventy vendors and a wide selection of dining option on its 60-acre show grounds. The Classic’s world-class equestrian competition attracts the nation’s top professional and amateur riders including Olympic medalists.
The Classic’s world-class field of Grand Prix riders competes daily in the Classic’s open jumper division, which featured an FEI-recognized Grand Prix on three consecutive days, Friday through Sunday: the $50,000 Douglas Elliman Grand Prix Qualifier, presented by Longines, on Friday, the $40,000 Longines Cup on Saturday, and Sunday’s $250,000 Grand Prix and FEI World Cup Qualifier, presented by Land Rover, a qualifying competition for the 2015 Longines FEI World Cup Final in Las Vegas next April.
The rider who accumulates the most points in the horse show’s Open Jumper division wins the $30,000 Longines Rider Challenge.
A-listers that attended the 39th Annual Hampton Classic included B. Smith, Gayle King, Mayor Guiliani, Matt Lauer, Jill Zarin, Jean Shafiroff, Beth Stern and Jennifer Lopez.
For more information on the Hampton Classic please visit the website at www.hamptonclassic.com