Adrienne Sternlicht is kicking off her WEF season with a bang by earning a 1.45m win earlier in the week and again leading the victory gallop in the $25,000 CaptiveOne Advisors 1.50m Classic on Saturday riding Cadans Z, owned by her own Starlight Farms 1 LLC.
From a field of 31, 10 horses advanced to an Eric Hasbrouck-designed jump-off track where Sternlicht stopped the clock in an uncatchable 36.769 seconds over her trainer and two-time U.S. Olympic team gold medalist McLain Ward. He and Heavenly W, owned by Portfolio Horses LLC, stopped the clock double clear in 38.026 seconds.
“At the end of last year, McLain was riding [Cadans Z], and this is my first week back on her. She’s a great mare, has a lot of quality, and today I was able to get out of her way,” said Sternlicht of her one-year history with the 10-year-old Zangersheide mare (Carosso VDL x Navarone). “She has not been the easiest horse for me to figure out. Having the experience of watching McLain ride any horse, especially one that you’ve been working with, is always incredibly educational.”
Of her jump-off round, Sternlicht noted, “I think I won by a little bit of shock factor. Once I got going, I didn’t slow down. Today I don’t think was my prettiest, but my horse was really good to me.
“We come here to compete, so we have a full string of horses going,” continued Sternlicht. “For that reason, I think it is great that the new footing feels so fantastic. It is a huge improvement!”
Coming off a team gold medal at the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games™, Sternlicht has tunnel vision for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan, and is using WEF as preparation for her bid for the U.S. team.
“I think this year has the potential to be the most important year of my riding career,” she said. “I have the best group of horses that I’ve ever had. I’m very, very fortunate to have some depth in my string of grand prix horses. Last year I missed out on several Saturday night classes, so I’m very excited to be able to compete this WEF and to be able to enjoy all that the season has to offer.”
Canada’s Mario Deslauriers rounded out the top three in a time of 38.078 seconds riding Uris de la Roque, which he co-owns with Aram Ampagiumian LLC, while Samuel Parot, Jr. took fourth in 39.615 seconds aboard Buga Z, owned by Samuel Parot. Hector Florentino (DOM) capped the top five in 40.806 seconds riding Carjo Z, owned by Scott Head.
Also winning in the International Arena at WEF on Saturday, Charles Jacobs (USA) took top call in the $15,000 SJHOF High Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic riding Cassinja S, owned by CMJ Sporthorses LLC, while Catalina Peralta (USA) and Wendy Peralta’s Conti won in the $1,500 High Junior Jumpers. Grace Debney (USA) closed out the day with a victory in the $1,500 Medium Junior Jumpers riding Darc Kiss Z for owner Temple Equestrian LLC.
Final Results: $25,000 CaptiveOne Advisors 1.50m Classic
1 CADANS Z: 2009 Zangersheide mare by Carosso VDL x Navarone
ADRIENNE STERNLICHT (USA), Starlight Farms 1, LLC: 0/0/36.769
2 HEAVENLY W: 2012 KWPN gelding by Calvaro F.C. x Delia W
MCLAIN WARD (USA), Portfolio Horse LLC: 0/0/38.026
3 URIS DE LA ROQUE: 2008 Selle Français gelding by Capital x Quick Star
MARIO DELAURIERS (CAN), Aram Ampagoumian LLC & Mario Deslauriers: 0/0/38.078
4 BUGA Z: 2010 Zangersheide gelding by Chester Z x Quality Touch Z
SAMUEL PAROT JR (CHI), Samuel Parot: 0/0/39.615
5 CARJO Z: 2008 Zangersheide gelding by Calvinos x Chellano Z
HECTOR FLORENTINO (DOM), Scott Head: 0/0/40.806