It’s back! The Wellington Eventing Showcase—the event hailed by Boyd Martin as “by far the best competition I’ve ever been to” last year—gets underway at 8 a.m., on Friday, Feb. 5. Here’s what you need to know:
U.S. show jumper Lauren Hough sustained a knee injury on Jan. 24 from a fall while schooling a horse at her Wellington, Fla., stables. Hough, 40, served on the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games team and the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games teams and has jumped in six World Cup Finals. She rode Ohlala to team and individual bronze at the 2015 Pan American Games (Toronto).
Cynthia Visser giggled a bit when she remembered winning the Groom’s Class at the 1997 Ox Ridge Horse Show (Conn.).
The Groom’s Class was a highlight of the Ox Ridge show in June each year for the grooms—a chance to show off their hard work and win some extra cash. That year, Visser earned $1,200 as the overall winner. She remembers that she gambled a bit to get that win.
The headline of the weekend was for sure the Snowzilla storm Jonas, and our social media streams this weekend were full of horses playing in snow combined with lucky riders in Florida and California enjoying the sun!
Lynn Symansky is in Ocala, Fla., to get a jump on the competition season, but she left a few horses at home to battle the more-than-3’ snow drifts in Middleburg, Va.
The year was 1984, and down in Wellington, Fla., the Winter Equestrian Festival was still in its infancy. The show report in the Chronicle in the March 9, 1984 issue painted a very different picture of the area 32 years ago!
The report read:
An endless expanse of flat land, broken only by the landscaped knolls and valleys of countless golf courses, lent itself ideally to further the near-perfect conditions at the Insilco Masters Horse Show, held Feb. 21-26 at the Palm Beach Polo and Country Club in Wellington, Fla.
“You can’t see, but I’m smiling and laughing as I talk about all this,” said Celeste “Cissy” Mohlman Webb as we chatted about her days showing Daily Nip back in the 1960s.
Webb hasn’t ridden much in the last few decades, but when I called her to ask about the great photo of her that originally ran in the Chronicle in 1965, she was thrilled to talk about her wonderful off-the-track Thoroughbred Daily Nip.
The Brazilian Equestrian Federation announced that the legendary George H. Morris has accepted an offer to serve as their show jumping coach through the 2016 Rio Olympic Games in August.
"I’m not the chef d’equipe. I’ll be the trainer," Morris said. "I was asked, they’re all very good friends, my boyfriend is from Rio, and I think it will be a positive thing. It’s something that will be fun for George."
Bertram Allen, the young Irish superstar, was about to be crowned the winner of the Olympia Grand Prix with Quiet Easy on the evening of Dec. 21, but was disqualified from the result just before the awards ceremony. A steward found a small amount of blood on Quiet Easy’s side and invoked the FEI blood rule, which is FEI Jumping Rules Article 242.3.1: “Mandatory Disqualification - Horses bleeding on the flank(s), in the mouth or nose or marks indicating excessive use of spurs or of the whip anywhere on the horse.”