On Friday during Week 5 of the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF), the first five-star week of the season continued with a victory for Germany’s Rupert Carl Winkelmann in the $62,500 Bainbridge CSI5* 1.50m Speed. Fifty-six competitors took to 2024 Olympic course designer Gregory Bodo’s (FRA) track looking to beat the clock.
Winkelmann and Quinn 33 (Quidam De Revel x Contender), owned by Einkendorf Horses GMBH & Co. KG, set the lead early in the order and never looked back. Going eleventh in the order, the pair completed the track in a clear 60.52 seconds.
“We’re very happy. This is actually my first five-star at WEF, so to come out here and win it is great,” said Winkelmann, 31. “I’ve had the horse [Quinn 33] for several years now.”
During the 2023 season at WEF, Quinn 33 was also piloted to international wins with U.S. rider Tanner Korotkin.
“After last season I took over the reins and he’s been great,” continued Winkelmann. “He’s naturally fast and careful as well, so the ride on him is fun. My job is to think ‘slow’ and he takes care of the rest.” The 14-year-old gelding will continue at the 1.50m level throughout the season, as that is where Winkelmann feels he shines.
Felicie de Coquerie and Karime Perez Nunez Score Career Win in $32,000 1/ST Racing CSI2* Qualifier
The $32,000 1/ST Racing CSI2* Qualifier lit up jumper competition in the International Arena on Friday as Karime Perez Nunez (MEX) topped a field of 57 horse-and-rider combinations. Gregory Bodo (FRA) designed a track worthy of its competitors, but advanced 15 starters onto the short course, while time played a significant factor for four entries, keeping them from contending in the jump-off.
The time to beat became tighter and tighter as the challengers put forth their best rounds, but only five navigated to a double-clean effort. Among those five, Perez Nunez and her own nine-year-old Selle Français mare Felicie de Coquerie (Malito de Reve x Quiniou) sailed into the lead as the only pair to stop the clock under 40 seconds with a finishing time of 39.29 seconds. The win was a stellar and defining moment in Perez Nunez’s career, much of which she credits to Ilan Ferder.
“I was riding in La Silla (MEX) and Ilan was there competing. He saw me flatting my horse one morning and came over and asked if I wanted to be part of his team,” Perez Nunez stated. “I figured, why not start a new adventure, so I talked to my friend and my parents and two months later I was here in Florida as a working student for him. That was two years ago now.”
The Kristen Baran $100,000 Neil S. Hirsch Boys & Girls Club Team Hunter Exhibition Debuts at Wellington International
Hunter riders went under the lights on Friday at Wellington International for a first-of-its-kind event at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF). The Kristen Baran $100,000 Neil S. Hirsch Boys & Girls Club Team Hunter Exhibition featured hunter teams of three jumping a 3’3” course in the International Arena to benefit the local chapter of the Boys & Girls Club. After 14 teams took to the track, Brianne Goutal-Marteau, Grace Debney, and Clara Propp emerged the first-ever winners of this innovative offering.
Teams consisted of a professional, amateur, and junior hunter rider. Scores were given from three judging panels for an average final score. Each team was afforded one drop score with the opportunity to erase their lowest-ranked performance akin to a jumper Nations Cup. High scores of 91.33 from Goutal-Marteau and 89.67 from Clara Propp delivered their team the victory.
Professional Goutal-Marteau of Annapolis, MD piloted Grand Remo, junior Clara Propp of New York, NY rode Arabesque, and amateur Grace Debney of Hampden, MA dusted off her hunter boots and took over the ride on a borrowed mount, Lifestyle.
“It’s been a long time since we’ve done something new in the hunter ring, and obviously to do it for a charitable cause is even better. I think the format is really fun,” said Goutal-Marteau of the class that allowed three riders to jump the same course, while their teammates waited inside the ring for their turn. “It flowed really nicely, and it’s also really fun to do it at 3’3”: less pressure and you see a lot of good horses having a good time and doing everything easily.”