The Ridge at Wellington’s Turf Tour returned to the pristine polo fields of the International Polo Club (IPC) Palm Beach for another day of ideal weather, unparalleled footing and challenging competition. Michael Murphy, the leader of the first 1.30m-1.35m Jumper Class was spotted anxiously perched on the edge of his seat as the last horse of the day attempted Nick Granat’s course, but his jump off time of 35.624 seconds held solid, proving that Murphy’s Law held no water for the sixth week of The Ridge at Wellington Turf Tour.
Murphy discussed his plans for his Prem’ Dollar Boy, “This is the best place to show! The horse I rode was Prem’ Dollar Boy, he’s 11 years old, and we decided to do The Turf Tour as a warm-up for the Under-25 division because it’s on the grass this week. We just did the one class, and he rode really nice today; he’s going really well. This is the perfect venue to come to and at the same time get the horse prepared.”
Ben Meredith came in a close second to Murphy, aboard Anabelle 28, in a time of 36.391 seconds. Anne Kursinski brought two of her mounts over to IPC and claimed third on her trusted partner Diva, stopping the clock in 37.127, and eighth on a less familiar ride, MTM Motto.
Kursinski could hardly keep her enthusiasm contained about coming to The Ridge. “I think these shows are great. It’s so nice to have something different. I think WEF is great, yet both are totally different. To be able to bring the horses here for this experience, as well as for the kids, is perfect to familiarize them with jumping on the grass and going to a new venue-the experience is fantastic. The footing is excellent, the jumps are exceptional, and the courses are ideal. I’m so thankful that George [D’Ambrosio] and Nona [Garson] have created this, and they should!”
Kursinski continued, “I hope for them that they do get good sponsorship, because this should be wonderfully sponsored. Growing up we learned how to ride on turf-you go to Spruce Meadows, and you go to a lot of big shows in Europe, they all still have grass. I think it’s a great asset, that everybody learns how to ride on grass, and I think the horses love it. I think it’s a wonderful opportunity for everybody.”
The 2014 Leading Rider, Jeffery Welles, put in some incredibly fast rounds, claiming first aboard KM What Ever RV in 30.920, third on Calais with a time of 32.120 and fourth on Broken Heart, stopping the clock in 32.640 in the second $2,400 1.30m- 1.35m class. While Paul O’Shea put in a very fast time of 30.948 aboard Primo Calypso, he was able to clinch the second place finish, but couldn’t quite catch Welles blazing speed.
Welles was happy with all of his mounts. “Broken Heart had a week off, so he was fresh and a little spooky at the beginning. But then he thawed out and he was good. Calais was the same, a little spooky at fence one but then I was really happy with the way he went. He jumped really nicely. KM What Ever RV is a quicker mover than the other two, so I was able to ride the same track in the jump off, but he’s a quicker mover across the ground, so he was faster in the jump off. He’s more experienced and is a very nice horse. The course rode nicely, the footing was good, and I liked the jump off with nice sweeping turns.”
The second ring saw a number of talented horse and rider pairs competing throughout the day. Rogelio Pollerano claimed the top prize on his own Ubbie d’ondroville in the first Low Schooling Jumpers. Stephanie Gallucci rode Chellou to a second place finish. In the second Low Schooling Jumper class, Roger Seitzmer was victorious on Bimini. Germain Edelmann captured second with S & L Farms’ S & L Puppy Love.
Marie Hecart on Amy Hentenaar’s Wishfull-V won the first class of the Medium Schooling Jumpers. Roger Pellerano returned to the ring to pick up second on his own Temporelle De Fritot. Sephan Barcha riding Nelson Pessoa’s Heticcra won the second Medium Schooling Jumper class, while Vis A Vis 10 finished in second, owned and ridden by Kiva Iscol.