East Dorset, Vermont — For the adult amateur jumper competitors at the Vermont Summer Festival, the highlight of their week is the $1,500 NAL/WIHS Adult Jumper Classic and, on Saturday, Krystyna Metcalf of Providence, RI, rode Aron to victory. The Vermont Summer Festival is a six-week hunter/jumper competition that runs until August 19 and features the world’s top equestrian athletes competing amid the picturesque Green Mountains.
Four riders of the initial 13 entries were clear in the first round, which featured a course designed by Anthony D’Ambrosio of Red Hook, NY. They advanced to a shortened course for the jump-off, where Metcalf had the fastest round without faults. The NAL/WIHS Adult Jumper Classic is a qualifying event for finals held in Harrisburg, PA, and Washington D.C. this fall.
The first to return for the jump-off was Hillary, ridden by Susannah Wise. Wise had the fastest time of the afternoon in 35.51 seconds, but a rail down at the second to last jump cost her four faults.
Next in the ring was In the Red, ridden by Turan Atay. Atay chose to be careful and slower, which paid off when he finished with a clear round in 43.58 seconds to move into the lead.
Metcalf and Aron then took their turn in the jump-off. They kept an average pace and made good turns, which helped them stay clear in a time of 40.15 seconds.
The final combination in the ring was Joan Jacobs on Boyke II. Jacobs was very fast around the course and was on pace to win, but a rail at the second to last jump dashed her hopes for a blue ribbon. She finished with four faults in 36.11 seconds for fourth place.
Metcalf has only owned Aron, a nine-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding, for five months, but this was not their first visit to the winner’s circle. They also won three out of four adult jumper classics at June’s Saratoga Classic horse show series in New York. Metcalf has ridden horses for 11 years, and she has trained out of Holly Hill Farm for three years.
She said that in the competition she “wanted to go double clean because there weren’t very many in the jump-off. I just wanted to try my best and have fun.”
The victory was particularly special because her father was ringside to cheer her on.
“I’m really excited to win because my dad doesn’t usually come to horse shows," Metcalf explained. "It was really nice that he could be here for it.”
This is Metcalf’s sixth year showing at the Vermont Summer Festival, and she will compete during five of the six weeks this year. “I love how much stuff there is to do up here, going to the quarry, shopping,” she smiled. “It’s always really nice to be here. It’s more than just a horse show.”
Final Results: $1,500 NAL/WIHS Adult Jumper Classic
- Aron, Krystyna Metcalf:0/0/40.158
- In the Red, Turan Atay: 0/0/43.587
- Hillary, Susannah Wise: 0/4/35.519
- Boyke II, Joan Jacobs: 0/4/36.113
- Nivo, Susannah Wise: 4/70.601
- Sand Dollar, Jennifer Imhoff: 4/72.107
- Aracona Z, Sarah Flink: 4/75.138
- Go West, Joan Jacobs: 4/74.204
he highlight of the ‘Manchester Summer Festival’ week running July 18 to 22 at the Vermont Summer Festival is Sunday’s $30,000 Battenkill Grand Prix, presented by Hand Motors, which begins at 2 p.m. in the grand prix ring.
For the first time, the Vermont Summer Festival is pleased to offer live video streaming of all five competition rings for those who cannot attend the horse show in person. Visit www.livebroadcast.tv or www.vt-summerfestival.com for more information.
New England’s largest “AA” rated hunter/jumper horse show, the Vermont Summer Festival offers over $750,000 in prize money, making it the richest sporting event in the state of Vermont. For more information on the 2007 Vermont Summer Festival including complete results, please visit www.vt-summerfestival.com.