Will Faudree and Pawlow snuck past overnight leaders Ashley Adams and Da Vinci Code to take the win in the inaugural running of the CIC2* at Pine Top on a score of 44.4. Will and Ernie almost delivered a double clear trip cross the country, coming home with just .4 time penalties. Ashley and Da Vinci Code also had a fantastic trip, jumping clear with 4.4 time penalties to finish on 46.6. I could hear her celebrating after crossing the finish line — yelling “He was SO good!” — from all the way over by the first water complex. Ariel Grald and Fernhill Cove moved all the way up from ninth place thanks to a fast, clear trip and just 1.2 time penalties to finish in third place with a final score of 56.5. Leslie Law and Fernhill Whatever had a steady trip to finish with 11.2 time penalties for fourth place, and Meghan Perry and Nicos moved from 10th up to fifth place with just 2.4 time penalties.
Two horse-and-rider pairs managed double clear trips in the CIC2*: Becky Holder and Frodo of the Shire, who finished seventh on their score of 62.9, and Nilson Moreira da Silva and Muggle, who finished 17th. I stayed by the first water complex, and we saw some really gutsy, scrappy riders through there. Silver Flash jumped in huge, and Abby Hamblin recovered well and gave the horse a smart ride through the rest of the complex. Ashley Kehoe also had an excellent save at the first water with D.A. Vittoria. The mare slipped badly after jumping out right before the angled brush at 13b, and she kept her cool and got the mare through safely. Kudos to Ashley for getting it done in her first ever two-star! I also have to give a shout out to the grounds crew for quickly laying gravel around the slippery spots at the first water.
We didn’t see much trouble on course, with only four riders recording runouts. Lauren Clark and Yoscha Bosche had a stop at fence 12, the log jump into the first water complex. Alexandra Willoughby and Tiki Car also had a runout at the coffin complex at fence 7. Taryn Nolte and Cleverly had two runouts, one at Duttun’s Saloon at 7A and the other at 20b at the second water complex. Kristen Bond and Seams Ready also had two stops, one at the coffin complex before the first water and at 13b, the angled brush after the water. That fence required riders to really sit and commit to their line, and the horse just glanced off to the right. Emily Beshear had the only fall in the division when Here’s To You hung a leg at fence 12 going into the first water complex. He twisted badly over the jump and managed to stay on his feet, but the awkward landing threw Emily to the right, and she popped off in the water. Both were OK after the mishap.