When speed is the name of the game in a show jumping class, there are a few riders who jump to the top of your mind. Laura Kraut of Middleburg, VA, showed tonight what makes her a top rider against the clock, taking the $32,000 Jolera International Jumper Welcome following a third place finish in the $20,000 International Power & Speed this afternoon.

Besting Colombia’s Daniel Bluman by just tenths of a second, Kraut shaved turns and left out strides across the arena, letting her gutsy horse Teirra just “go for it” for the win.

“She’s a really neat, handy horse and she is so brave,” said Laura of Teirra. “I’ve been riding her really carefully, saving her and protecting her, but I’ve been having one down every time for the last couple of weeks. I thought ‘I need to break this streak.’ She loves to go and gallop so I went in tonight with the idea of trying to win, just letting her go. I got a little lucky, Daniel came dangerously close to beating me!”

Bluman beat them all this afternoon, however, opening the International division with a win in the $20,000 International Jumper Power & Speed competition.

Of sixteen riders to contest the opening class, just nine jumped without faults around their power phase to then advance to the speed phase of each two-part round.

Bluman produced a fluid, efficient ride with Clyde over the intricate course to finish on a time of 33.470 seconds, a whisker ahead of Vince and Frieda’s hard earned 33.700 seconds. Laura Kraut rounded out the top three, finishing on 35.730 seconds with Belmont.

“All of my horses are young,” said Bluman following tonight’s class. “Clyde jumped really well this afternoon, he was fresh and sorted it all out well. Tonight I had to go right after Laura in the ring, so I watched what she did and then figured I could use the stride of my mare to save a little here and there. I was close but I just could not catch her.”

Tomorrow night’s Royal Horse Show features one of the highlights of this year’s Royal – the inaugural $100,000 Hickstead FEI World CupTM Grand Prix. The class was renamed in honour of Eric Lamaze’s Olympic champion mount from the 2008 Olympic games, Hickstead, who passed away suddenly one year ago. Lamaze will be joining a special guest to make the presentations to the winners tomorrow night following the class.

$32,000 Jolera International Jumper Welcome

Rider / Hometown / Horse / Faults : Time
1. Laura Kraut / Middleburg, VA / Teirra / 0 : 58.55
2. Daniel Bluman / Colombia / Sancha LS / 0 : 58.88
3. Dermott Lennon / Ireland / Hallmark Elite / 0 : 60.58
4. Christine McCrea / Windsor, CT / Wannick WH / 0 : 67.26
5. Lauren Hough / Wellington, FL / Ohlala / 4 : 58.74

$20,000 International Power & Speed

Rider / Hometown / Horse / Faults : Time
1. Daniel Bluman / Colombia / Clyde / 0.00 : 33.470
2. Ainsley Vince / Burlington, ON / Frieda / 0.00 : 33.700
3. Laura Kraut / Middleburg, VA / Belmont / 0.00 : 35.730
4. Conor Swail / Ireland / Lansdowne / 0.00 : 36.130
5. Shane Sweetnam / Ireland / Amaretto D’Arco / 0.00 : 39.890