East Dorset, Vermont — For the second day in a row, Hillary Dobbs of Sussex, NJ, stood in the winner’s circle at the Vermont Summer Festival Horse Show running July 9 to August 17 at the Harold Beebe Farm in East Dorset, VT. Having won Thursday’s $5,500 Open Welcome, Dobbs again rode Marengo to victory in the $10,000 Polo Ralph Lauren, Lilly Pulitzer Open Welcome Stake, Presented by Manchester Designer Outlets, on Friday afternoon.
Of the 28 challengers in Friday’s competition, seven managed to post clear rounds over the track set by renowned course designer Guilherme Jorge of Brazil and advance to the jump-off. As the first to attempt the shortened jump-off track, Jimmy Torano had a rail down at 9b, the second obstacle of a double combination set in the far corner. His time of 42.13 seconds put him in the early lead with Magic Cruise, an eight-year-old grey mare sired by the famous Irish show jumping stallion, Cruising.
Torano’s lead would be short-lived however as the next jump-off challenger, Dobbs riding Marengo, also had fence 9b down, but in a much quicker time of 37.52 seconds. Of the five horse-rider combinations that followed, none were able to come close to catching her, giving Dobbs, 20, her second victory in as many days.
“I thought it was a good course, it was sizeable enough, and Marengo jumped it easily, he was jumping loose and scopey,” said Dobbs of Marengo, a 10-year-old Holsteiner gelding owned by The Dobbs Group. “We had an unfortunate rail in the jump-off, I think we were both looking to turn too soon, but surprisingly, there were no double clears so it held up.”
While Torano of Ft. Lauderdale, FL, finished as the runner-up, another Florida resident, Alan Korotkin of Lake Worth, took third with a four-fault jump-off score riding the chestnut gelding Ruco-Line Van’t Paradys. Shaine Brooks of Loundonville, NY, incurred eight faults in the jump-off to place fourth with the big grey, Rolling Hills Kolita.
In addition to winning with Marengo, Dobbs also placed fifth with her new mount, Marlo. The former grand prix mount of Danielle Torano, Dobbs purchased the 11-year-old grey Dutch Warmblood mare two weeks ago.
“This is the biggest course I have jumped with her so far,” said Dobbs, a Harvard student. “She is so athletic, the first round felt pretty easy for her. In the jump-off, it was the first time I opened her up and tried to go fast. It was a good time to get in the jump-off and test the waters before Sunday.”
For her win, Dobbs received $3,000 in prize money as well as a gift card for $1,000 from Polo Ralph Lauren.
“I’ve been looking forward to going shopping all week, and this makes it even better!” said Dobbs who has trained with Vermont resident Missy Clark for the past five years and, since then, has made the Vermont Summer Festival a regular stop on her summer schedule. “The sponsors here are so great, there are always great prizes. It is a treat to show here.”
Dobbs and Marengo will be hoping to make it three for three in Sunday’s feature event, the $30,000 Vermont Summer Special Grand Prix, beginning at 2 p.m.
Competition is held daily Wednesday through Sunday, beginning at 8 a.m. and running until approximately 4 p.m. Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for children Wednesday through Saturday. On ‘Grand Prix Sunday’, admission is $7 for adults and $5 for children. All gate proceeds are donated to the Friends Foundation for MEMS, benefiting programs in the local Elementary & Middle School.
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.
Visit the Vermont Summer Festival website for more information, including full results.
$10,000 Polo Ralph Lauren, Lilly Pulitzer Open Welcome Stake – Final Results
|1||Hillary Dobbs||Sussex, NJ||Marengo||0:4||37.52|
|2||Jimmy Torano||Ft. Lauderdale, FL||Magic Cruise||0:4||42.13|
|3||Alan Korotkin||Lake Worth, FL||Ruco-Line Van’t Paradys||0:4||47.52|
|4||Shaine Brooks||Loundonville, NY||Rolling Hills Kolita||0:8||39.97|
|5||Hillary Dobbs||Sussex, NJ||Marlo||0:8||41.79|
|6||Caitlin Venezia||Newbury, MA||Contino 5||0:8||45.06|
|7||Santos Lamarca||Argentina||Fatalix Fatum||0:8||45.44|
|8||Amy Momrow||Loundonville, NY||Summer Storm||4|