East Dorset, Vermont — Mark Bluman clinched another victory in the $10,000 Not Your Daughter’s Jeans Welcome Stake, presented by Manchester Designer Outlets, with G&C Blue during week five of the Vermont Summer Festival. The pair was also victorious in the same class during the 2012 Vermont Summer Festival.
Bluman was thrilled with his win, especially after he and G&C Blue, a 10-year-old selle francais gelding owned by Gustavo Mirabal of G&C Farm in Wellington, FL, enjoyed some time off after competing during the first two weeks of the Vermont Summer Festival. Bluman traveled home to Colombia while the horses enjoyed some down time at Max Amaya’s Stonehenge Stables in Colts Neck, NJ.
“It feels great (to win again with Blue),” Bluman smiled. “The horses had a couple weeks off after the first two weeks here. I just got back from Colombia two days ago. I went home to visit my family and renew my visa. Manuel (Manchillanda) and Luis Fernando (Larrazabal) did an awesome job with my horses while I was gone. They all jumped great today. It’s a great feeling.”
G&C Blue was one of three mounts Bluman showed in the welcome stake on Thursday afternoon. Bluman first entered the ring with G&C Carla but incurred four jumping faults before returning to the ring and laying down a clear round with G&C Lagran.
“It’s good to have multiple chances to go in the ring,” Bluman acknowledged. “With the first horse, you get to ride the course and feel how it is. I think when you’re riding more than one horse you have an advantage on the other ones because you already know the course.”
Bluman eventually finished fourth with G&C Lagran after suffering from four jumping faults in the jump-off trying to catch the time of Johnathan Corrigan and Olympic de Chamant who put in a double clear performance. Corrigan had to settle for second after Bluman and G&C Blue, who were also double clear; flew into first place after taking nearly three full seconds off of Corrigan’s time.
His speedy round wasn’t Bluman’s original plan of attack for the course designed by Michel Vaillancourt, but Bluman admitted his competitive streak kicked in once he had a clean first round.
“When I was going to the ring, I said to Luis and Manuel that I wasn’t going to go for it. I was just going to try to go clean and if I got to the jump off I’m just going to do a nice round. But I’m young and I want to win, so it just happened,” he laughed.
Never one to set a leisurely pace in the ring, Bluman had no trouble staying within a tight time allowed that kept many of his fellow competitors from reaching the jump off.
“I’m always a fast rider. I’ve never had time faults in my life. I don’t think the way to save time is leaving out strides in the lines. I think the way to save time is galloping through the corners and letting your horse go whenever you have the chance. That’s the way to save time I think,” Bluman described.
Since their victory at the 2012 Vermont Summer Festival, G&C Blue has been Bluman’s trusted partner in several grand prix classes as well as the Nations’ Cup competition at the FTI Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Florida.
“Blue has always been there for me. He’s been great and has had some good results (over the last year),” Bluman commented. “He’s a very peaceful horse. It brings you confidence to ride him. You can ask him whatever you want and he will do it.”
Bluman will return with all three mounts in Saturday’s $30,000 Manchester & the Mountains Grand Prix, presented by Purina Horse Feed. Following Vermont, the G&C Team heads to HITS Saugerties in New York and the Alltech National Horse Show in Kentucky before heading home to Florida for some time off. Bluman and Larrazabal both hope to be chosen for the teams heading to the XVII Bolivarian Games in Trujillo, Peru this November.
The Vermont Summer Festival, celebrating its 20th anniversary in its current Manchester location, offers more than $750,000 in prize money, making it the richest sporting event based on purse in the state of Vermont.
The first five Saturdays of the Vermont Summer Festival feature a $30,000 Grand Prix. The $50,000 Vermont Summer Celebration Grand Prix will be held during the sixth and final week on Saturday, August 10. The weekly $10,000 Open Welcome Stake, Presented by Manchester Designer Outlets, is held each Thursday. The hugely popular $5,000 3’3” Hunter Derby is also held each Thursday for the first five weeks, with week six featuring the $15,000 Hunter Derby.
The Vermont Summer Festival is a proud member event of the Show Jumping Hall Of Fame, the Marshall & Sterling League, and the North American League (NAL). Please e-mail us or visit our website for more information about the Vermont Summer Festival.
$10,000 Not Your Daughter's Jeans Open Welcome Stake, Presented by Manchester Designer Outlets
|1||Mark Bluman||G & C Blue||0:0||29.66|
|2||Johnathan Corrigan||Olympic de Chamant||0:0||30.72|
|4||Mark Bluman||G & C Lagran||0:4||31.28|
|5||Adrienne Sternlicht||S & L Slingback||0:4||32.17|
|7||Julie Welles||Bazooka de Muze||4|