It’s a quick turnaround for the horses and riders left to battle it out for the top prize (and a cool few thousand dollars) over Capt. Mark Phillips’ cross country course this afternoon at the $50,000 MARS Eventing Showcase. Wellington isn’t exactly known as an eventing hub, but it’s sure been turned into one today.
Riders will be facing 19 jumping efforts set out in the derby field for a twisting and turning show of cross country riding. The first rider is due out on course at 1:30 pm ET, and we’ll be seeing the pairs coming forward in reverse order of go.
3:16 pm ET: Buck Davidson was originally announced the winner but it looks like Marilyn’s time has been corrected and she will eke out the win by the hair on Kitty’s nose. Their final score of 28.2 is enough to beat out Buck and Carlevo on a 28.6! A thriller finale here in Wellington! Stay tuned for the final report.
3:12 pm ET: Marilyn Little gets away with some hairy moments at the skinny brushes at 9 and 10 as well as at the final corners, forcing a circle between the two. However, the two corners are separately numbered so she gets home with no jump penalties but her time is 3 minutes 23 seconds.
3:08 pm ET: Buck scraps his way through and makes it under the time! Now it comes to our leader, Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous. Will they hang on for the big win? Marilyn has a few seconds of time in hand but cannot afford any jumping penalties.
3:06 pm ET: Buck and Carlevo aren’t hanging around either — this one will come down to the wire as the pressure cooker is on!
3:05 pm ET: Buck Davidson and Carlevo are our second to last out of the box on a score of 28.6.
3:03 pm ET: Phillip gives us a masterclass in how to ride forward through the turns and comes home in 3 minutes 7 seconds for another clear inside the time.
3:01 pm ET: Liz Halliday-Sharp will finish both Deniro Z and Cooley Quicksilver in the top 5 today after collecting another double clear with her second ride of the day.
2:58 pm ET: Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z are our next out looking for a clear round. This pair finished 15th at Burghley in 2019 and will be looking to build on that this year.
2:57 pm ET: Waylon Roberts and Lancaster easily make the time to keep the pressure on our leaders.
2:53 pm ET: SO GOOD! Lots of love for Louie as Sharon White stops the clock at just over 3:07 for a clear inside the time to stay on their score of 31.3. They’ll take the provisional lead with five more to see.
2:51 pm ET: Sharon and “Louie” have a beautiful ride through the arrowheads at 9 and 10 and are looking to be good on time so far.
2:50 pm ET: We’re having a bit of an issue getting scores to load, so I apologize for the lack of specifics on scores. I’ll get you back up to date as soon as I can.
2:47 pm ET: Karen O’Connor tells us how Daniela describes Cecelia as more mature these days, hunting flags and understanding how many elements there are in a question. This experience shows as they continue attacking this course in a great rhythm. These two finish inside the time! Our next underway is Sharon White with Cooley On Show.
2:46 pm ET: Mexico’s Daniela Moguel and Cecelia are our next starters.
2:44 pm ET: Hallie Coon and Celien have come out attacking this course! They have a really catty ride through the skinny brushes that have been troublesome at fences 9 and 10.
2:42 pm ET: A lot to love about Ryan Wood’s quiet manner with Powell. Perhaps a touch too quiet to challenge for the win today, but he’ll be pleased with this pipe opener. This course has really rewarded a flowing ride (as most courses should, if we’re being honest), and it’s a nod to Capt. Phillips’ chops for designing with limited space that still allows for a good rhythm.
2:38 pm ET: Ryan Wood and Powell are our next to see on a score of 33.5. It’s looking like a safe bet that we’ll crown a new winner for the first time of the Wellington Showcase history. Who will it be?
2:37 pm ET: Boyd lives dangerously at the skinny fences at 9 and 10 but he’s safely through as Boyd can do. He is a bit down on the clock as he comes for home.
2:33 pm ET: Phillip Dutton adds .4 time penalties, just barely clocking in over the optimum. He’ll take a score of 34.1 for the three phases with Fernhill Singapore. Now away are Boyd Martin with Long Island T.
2:32 pm ET: Phillip Dutton and Fernhill Singapore look to be on a mission to make the time through the first handful of fences.
2:31 pm ET: A 35.8 will be Selena’s final score with Foxwood High after they add just one tick over the optimum time for .4 time penalties. What a ride from this experienced pair!
2:27 pm ET: Jennie Brannigan and Ibella have a lovely go with a couple green moments, adding just some time for a great educational round for this talented mare. Keep an eye on this one this year! Next out are Canadian fan favorites Selena O’Hanlon and Foxwood High.
2:24 pm ET: Jacob Fletcher hails a cab over the Nutro Ditch and comes home just outside of the time with the lovely Van Gough.
2:20 pm ET: Buck comes home at 3 minutes 30 seconds plus 20 jumping. Bummer, but some really great things to like about this round. A scopey jumper, that one!
2:19 pm ET: Buck becomes the first to fall victim to the narrow squirrel in the water at fence 12 after a beautiful ride through the skinny brushes at 9 and 10.
2:17 pm ET: Buck is underway with Erroll Gobey! This pair had one bummer of a rail earlier today and bring forward a score of 37.2.
— US Equestrian (@USequestrian) February 9, 2020
2:16 pm ET: Lisa Marie Fergusson and Honor Me:
2:15 pm ET: Ok, looks like we’re about to get set to head out with the next pair. It’ll be Buck Davidson and Erroll Gobey next out.
2:15 pm ET: Looks like they’ve got a cart up to help Clayton. FE Money Made is said to be fine. We’re just on a bit of a delay right now.
2:11 pm ET: Rats! Clayton Fredericks takes a tumble from FE Money Made also at fence 10, the second skinny arrowhead at the top of the hill. That’ll be an abbreviated end to their day, sadly.
2:10 pm ET: Ariel and Leamore Master Plan surprisingly fall victim to the skinnies atop the hill at fence 10. She continued on to finish on the final set of corners and has now pulled up to save her horse for another day.
2:06 pm ET: Ah! Lisa Marie and “Tali” have a drive by at the pair of corners at fence 16. They very nearly make the time even with the resulting circle, coming home in 3 minutes 11 seconds. She’ll be bummed about that runout, but their round was beautiful aside from that small blip. On the next one, girl! Next out are Ariel Grald and Leamore Master Plan.
2:03 pm ET: Canadian pair Lisa Marie Fergusson and her Welsh Cob cross Honor Me will be our next to go. This pair loves cross country.
2:01 pm ET: Man, what a cross country horse LCC Barnaby is. And Lillian’s forward, going eye is something we can all emulate. They’re having a cracking go so far. Lillian’s having to take a bit more time to set up her keen Irish Sport Horse so they come home 10 seconds over the optimum.
1:58 pm ET: Bummer, Sara Kozumplik Murphy exits through the back door after she and Rubens came in a bit under powered to the second skinny atop the hill at fence 10. Rubens climbed through the arrowhead a bit, but they’re both going to fight another day. We’ll see Lillian Heard with LCC Barnaby leaving the start box next.
1:56 pm ET: Charlotte Collier remain on their two phase score of 41.6. Sara Kozumplik Murphy and Rubens D’Ysieux are our new starters.
1:55 pm ET: Charlotte Collier and Clifford M just laid down a beautiful round to cross the line clear inside the time. I’m not sure she took one tug, it was such a smooth round. Well ridden!
1:52 pm ET: Liz Halliday-Sharp and Cooley Quicksilver become our second to come home inside the optimum time!
1:48 pm ET: Doug Paybe and Quantum Leap are making quick work of this course and are going to prove my bet right! 3 minutes and 5 seconds gets them within the optimum of 3 minute 9 seconds.
1:45 pm ET: It looks like Joe Meyer and Bucaneer have picked up a technical elimination. We’re off with Doug Payne and Quantum Leap.
1:42 pm ET: Cornelia Dorr and Sir Patico MH are home clear, even looking a bit steady in places but they look to have come in at least close to the time. 3 minutes and 28 seconds was their time. Joe Meyer and Bucaneer have had a drive by out on course.
1:40 pm ET: 3.2 time will be added for Holly Jacks-Smither and More Inspiration. Who will be our first clear inside the time of the day? My money’s on Doug Payne with Quantum Leap. Also, it looks like Erin Sylvester has withdrawn both of her horses, as have Lauren Kieffer with Veronica and Doug Payne with Vandiver.
1:38 pm ET: Cornelia Dorr and Sir Patico MH will be our next pair to see. Holly Jacks-Smither and More Inspiration are home clear, waiting on their time.
1:37 pm ET: Hang on, Holly! She’s unseated as “Morris” gets close to a fence but she keeps her balance and kicks away to turn for home.
1:35 pm ET: 7.2 penalties to add for Anna Loschiavo and Spartacus Q after a great trailblazing round. Away now are Canada’s Holly Jacks-Smither and More Inspiration, sitting on a score of 50.9.
1:33 pm ET: Spartacus Q is very keen and raring to go, really showing us that a forward stride will be rewarded today. It’s a tough job to be a pathfinder but this pair is setting a good example as they settle into a good rhythm.
1:32 pm ET: Our first pair is away! Anna Loschiavo and Spartacus Q had a bit of a disappointing show jumping round but will be out to seek a clear round today.
1:30 pm ET: Here are your top 10 heading into cross country. We’ll be seeing the remaining pairs in reverse order of go for what promises to be a thrilling finale here in Wellington.