Laura Chapot and Cilthe Z Capture the $25,000 Ariat Grand Prix at HITS Saugerties
RELEASE: September 13, 2007
AUTHOR/ADMINISTRATOR: By Chris Mayone
Laura Chapot and Cilthe Z had the fastest double-clear round in the $25,000 Ariat Grand Prix at HITS Saugerties on Thursday, September 6, to secure $7,500 in prize money for owners Harold Vogel and Mary Chapot.
Chapot has been riding the eight-year-old mare for just over a year. It was only Cilthe Z's third grand prix, but she has now won two of them thanks to a victory in Monmouth two weeks ago.
Course Designer Jerry Dougherty trimmed the field down to four riders for the jump-off. Going first in the jump-off were Todd Minikus and Pavarotti. The duo navigated the jump-off course without any faults and set the Great American Time to Beat at 43.46 seconds. The pair would finish the class in third place.
"I left the door open a little bit," said Minikus. "I had two of the four horses in the jump-off, so I thought to myself not to go crazy. Plus, I thought Laura's horse was green and wouldn't go as fast. But you should never underestimate Laura Chapot."
Second to go in the jump-off was Sharn Wordley and his mount Rockville. They navigated the course without dropping a rail, but their time of 46.985 seconds would only be good enough for fourth place. Chapot and Cilthe Z were next to go in the jump-off. Chapot was lightning fast, shaving over two seconds from Minikus' time when she stopped the clocks at 41.352. "When I finished the round, I didn't think I beat Todd's time," said Chapot. "But Cilthe Z is really fast. In fact, she is so fast it even surprises me sometimes."
Sitting in the envious last-to-ride spot was Minikus and his second mount of the jump-off, Ultimo Rouge. The pair stopped the clocks at 42.071 to secure second place after a clear effort.
"It was an exciting class with a terrific jump-off," said Dougherty. "Todd Minikus was first in the jump-off and set the pace early. Sharn was next on a young horse, so I am sure he was happy to come in fourth. Laura Chapot was third, and she was fast. I think she was so fast she even surprised herself. Todd came back again with his second trip of the jump-off and tried his best to catch her, but she was just too fast."
Week VII of show jumping at HITS Saugerties continues all weekend and culminates on Sunday, September 9, during the $75,000 Footings Unlimited Grand Prix. Sunday's featured class allows Grand Prix riders one final chance to qualify for the $100,000 USGPL Invitational Grand Prix . The top 30 horse-and-rider combinations based on prize money won will be invited to HITS Culpeper for the United States Grand Prix League (USPGL) Finals where they will compete for the top prize in the $100,000 USGPL Invitational Grand Prix on Sunday, September 30.
HITS, Inc., is a special events management company primarily focused on producing hunter/jumper horse shows. Based in upstate New York in the village of Saugerties, HITS produced its first horse show circuit in Gainesville, FL, in 1982. Since that time, HITS has grown into a nationwide company with world-class hunter-jumper circuits in California, Florida, Arizona, New York and Virginia.
For more information on the HITS horse shows and a complete schedule of classes and events, visit www.HitsShows.com