• USEF Network Liza Boyd & Dalliance Win CWD Saddlery Performance Working Hunter 3'6" at @ESP_WEF http://t.co/dSyW50CliW 1/29/2015 10:20:06 PM
  • USEF Network "A fault free round and faster on the clock." That's how Kaitlin Campbell & Rocky W won Thursday at #HITSOcala https://t.co/QiDEiErqmV 1/29/2015 9:08:04 PM
  • USEF Network 4 @ESP_WEF Challenge Cup classes, four Eric Lamaze wins. http://t.co/TnnzCYsR0Q http://t.co/YuIh5Ph4O2 1/29/2015 8:05:53 PM
  • USEF The videos and expert commentary at http://t.co/bcWzOy4n60 will help you master the 2015 USEF and USDF #dressage tests. Retweeted by USEFNetwork 1/29/2015 7:36:50 PM
  • USEF Network The @SmartPak Grand Prix at @HITSHorseShows Ocala today, as a @Snapchat story. #HITSOcala http://t.co/mkbnGGPW0n 1/29/2015 7:06:01 PM
  • USEF Network Kaitlin Campbell & Rocky W win the $25,000 @SmartPak Grand Prix at @HITSHorseShows Ocala! #HITSOcala http://t.co/Mram2UMzAP 1/29/2015 2:03:31 PM
  • USEF Network Tracy Fenney & MTM Centano went for the win, but they ran into some trouble. They finish the jump off with 12 faults in 47.026s. #HITSO 1/29/2015 1:57:32 PM
  • USEF Network Kaitlin Campbell & Rocky W take the lead! They are clear over the jump off course in 38.220s. #HITSOcala http://t.co/UlTkMPN8wx 1/29/2015 1:55:27 PM
  • USEF Network Juan Pablo Betancourt & Troya Retiro have 4 jump off faults in 41.071s. #HITSOcala Only 2 clear jump off rounds so far. 1/29/2015 1:53:35 PM
  • USEF Network 4 jump off faults in 44.539s for Tricia O'Connor & Le Bon Classic. #HITSOcala 1/29/2015 1:51:56 PM


Todd Minikus and Quality Girl Back in the Winner’s Circle at HITS Saugerties

RELEASE: August 3, 2013

Todd Minikus and Quality Girl on their way to a win in the $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix, presented by Zoetis, at HITS Saugerties (ESI Photography)
Todd Minikus and Quality Girl on their way to a win in the $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix, presented by Zoetis, at HITS Saugerties (ESI Photography)
Saugerties, NY
- Quality Girl’s feet were lightning fast and her turns were tight as she carried Todd Minikus of Loxahatchee, Florida to a win in the $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix, presented by Zoetis, Friday at HITS Saugerties. Besting a field of 47, Minikus added another grand prix to a long list of top finishes with his own Quality Girl during the summer circuit at HITS-on-the-Hudson.

“She has been awesome this summer,” admitted Minikus. “I owe it to a team effort – from Shannon who takes care of her, to my sponsors, to the Purina feed that fuels her. She comes out every day, ready and trying to be the winner.”

Bernardo Cabral of Lisbon, Portugal set the course in the Strongid® C 2X Grand Prix Stadium, which included 12 obstacles and 15 jumping efforts. Two combinations appeared late in the course; a triple combination coming off a triple bar at fence eight and an oxer-vertical double combination in the last line of the course.

Seventeen were clear over the original course, but the jump-off track put them to the test, with nine posting double-clear rounds. “The jump-off course really asked us to go fast,” said Minikus. “Despite some rain yesterday, the footing was great and all the horses seemed to jump really well.”

Sarah Segal of New York, New York set an early Great American Time to Beat in the jump-off at 41.17 seconds with Robert Segal’s Ramses. The lead changed two more times before Minikus and Quality Girl entered the ring as the eighth trip. “I saw the first horse go and then I kept hearing the times getting faster and faster, so I knew it was going to be a wide-open jump-off,” he said. “I was slow to the second-to-last fence and thought I gave it away, but I had made up enough time in the beginning to keep the lead.”

Aside from that one fence, there was nothing slow about the round. Minikus and Quality Girl crossed the beam in 38.40 seconds to establish the lead that would be contested nine more times, but ultimately stand. “If you don’t practice running at home when you’re flatting, you’ll never be able to run when you put a jump in front of you,” said Minikus of his reputation from bringing along notably fast mounts. “It all comes down to solid flat work and dressage outside the show ring.”

With less than a second between first and third, Darragh Kenny of Wellington, Florida rode Oakland Ventures, LLC’s Picolo to second just fractions behind Minikus, with a jump-off time of 38.47 seconds. Laura Chapot, on one of three mounts for the day, piloted Mary Chapot’s Zealous to third with a time of 38.65 seconds. She was also fourth with Mary Chapot’s Umberto in a time of 39.74 seconds and 12th on Quointreau Un Prince, owned by herself and McLain Ward.

Kevin Babington capped the top five aboard his own Goodwins Loyalty in a time of 40.14 seconds. Junior rider Michael Hughes of Allendale, New Jersey was sixth on Christina Fried’s MacArthur, while Segal’s original time to beat landed her in seventh. Jonathan McCrea of East Windsor, Connecticut piloted Colorado, owned by Candy Tribble & Windsor Show Stables, to eighth. Ninth went to Michael Desiderio of Chester, New Jersey on Tranquility Farm’s Hi Eight. The top ten was rounded out by Peter Wylde of Lake Worth, Florida with Societe Civile de L’Ecurie Meautry’s Lewin 5.