The Jumper Classic Celebrates 20 Years of Being New England's Premiere Equestrian Event by Offering Something For Everyone
RELEASE: September 3, 2009
AUTHOR/ADMINISTRATOR: By Anne Wargo
On a beautiful New England day, the 20th Annual Jumper Classic, featuring the $75,000 Fidelity Investments Grand Prix, kicked off by welcoming riders of all ages to New England's premiere equestrian venue at the Silver Oak Equestrian Center.
The Jumper Classic is the only American Grand Prix Association-sanctioned grand prix to take place in New England. The event features more than 72 classes and $200,000 in prize money. The Jumper Classic offers an array of divisions designed to attract riders of all ages and levels, from juniors to amateurs to professionals. Competitors this year include several former United States Olympians such as Norman Dello Joio, Leslie Burr Howard and last year's $75,000 Fidelity Investments Grand Prix winner and two-time Gold medalist, McLain Ward.
The show jumping action began on the Coldwell Banker Previews Grand Prix Field with the $500 Six-Year-Old Class. Darren Graziano set the tone for the day by galloping right into the winner's circle aboard Syrah, owned by the Dunkeld Associates to open up the Young Jumper Division. The win was an added bonus for Graziano whose training and sales business, DG Ventures, Inc., was also the sponsor of the division.
Not only was Graziano happy with the win, but he is extremely proud of how his business, DG Ventures, has developed over the past few years as he and his staff continue to guide, teach, train and inspire young riders and horses to harness their hidden talents and reach for their ultimate potential. "These wins are wonderful for my business, my name gets out there and it adds one more notch in our credibility belt for DG Venture, Inc. I am proud to sponsor this division. It's critical to the development of young horses and riders as well. I love this show and know that all the athletes here really look forward to this venue every year," said Graziano.
In the $500 Seven- and Eight-Year-Old Young Jumper Division sponsored by Wolfstone Stables, former Olympian Leslie Burr Howard took home the blue ribbon on Paris. Wolfstone Stables, is owned and operated by fellow rider and competitor Schuyler Riley. Riley has also represented the United States both internationally and in the U.S. She is an avid competitor on the show jumping circuit who is a native New Englander herself. Today, she owns and operates Wolfstone Stables, known as a premiere sales and training facility with locations in both Wellington, FL, and Stockton, NJ, where she focuses on producing world-class show jumping horses.
The day wrapped up with the Master's Division sponsored by Merial, which is open to competitors who are 40 years of age and older. Merial is a world-leading animal health company with a proven track record of producing pharmaceutical products and vaccines for livestock, pets and wildlife. The win went to Donald Little aboard Mr. Nighttime, who coincidentally on this, the 20th anniversary of is the Jumper Classic, is known most notably for being its original founder some 20-odd years ago.
Competitors of all levels raved about the pristine grounds at the Silver Oak Equestrian Center, which is owned by David Birdsall. Birdsall's daughter, Victoria, is a leading junior rider in the U.S. and is expected to compete in multiple classes this week, including the premiere event—the $75,000 Fidelity Investments Jumper Class Grand Prix on Sunday, September 6. Birdsall's goal when he purchased the 300-plus acre farm was to turn it into the premiere equestrian facility in New England. The venue features six all-weather rings and a six-acre grass field with a derby bank, grob, and open water.
In addition, to the exciting $12,000 Mohegan Sun Derby on Saturday, the Jumper Classic is proud to announce an additional class that will join professionals and amateurs in a race against the clock as a team in the $2,500 Stepping Stone Farm Pro Am Class. Previously the Jumper Classic has catered to jumper riders only,