Bracket Battle of Event Horses: ROUND 1 Cont.

The ENCAA Bracket Battle gallops on with the 2 vs 7 seeds from the O’Connor Region and the British Isles RegionCustom Made seems confident in his match-up with The Optimist, while the spunky Anglo-Arab Tamarillo takes on Pippa Funnell’s Supreme Rock.  The battles will be getting a little tougher as we work into the bracket, so choose wisely.  Vote for your favorite to send them on!  Sing your praises or grunt your grumbles in the comment section…noteworthy comments may be rewarded with extra votes toward a horse of your choice.

Here’s a great comment from Polly about Bally Mar, the daughter of yesterday’s challenger, Bally Cor:

Lest we forget, Bally Mar came from Massachusetts. Bred by the Pingree family, owned by Dierdre Pirie (mother of Amanda) and started by our old friend from Area 1, Jim Stamets. Jim and “Amber” competed successfully through Advanced, including a great run around the full format Blenheim. She was a quirky girl and they were perfect for each other. She was the 2001 USCTA Mare of the year. It wasn’t until the late Fall of 2001, when Jim died, that the mare was sent to the O’Connor camp.

EN Officials Committee decided to award 10 extra votes to Bally Cor for inspiring Polly’s comment.  Do you have anything special to say about today’s horses?  Speak up to earn some extra votes for your favorites!


Despite the 10 bonus votes, (8) Bally Cor still fell victim to (1)Dan Domination by the score of 177-103 (as of 12:00 PM).  (1) Ready Teddy handled (8) Darien Powers fairly easily, winning 177-74 .  Winsome Adante will face either (4) Poggio or (5) JJ Babu in the Sweet Sixteen.  Ready Teddy moves on to meet (4) Bounce or (5) Peppermint Grove.



Tailor teamed up with David O’Connor to make one of the best pairs in US eventing history.  David and Tailor placed 5th individually in Atlanta, 3rd at the ’96 Badminton, won Badminton CCI4* in 1997, and then won the individual Olympic Gold at Sydney in 2000.  David has a habit when he rides of focusing so intensely on his horses that he can forget about his course, and, despite that infamous moment of hesitation that brought all of American eventing screaming to our feet, Tailor broke the Olympic score record in Sydney and ended a 25 year US eventing Olympic Gold medal drought.  Tailor is renown for being calm on the flat, and chilly in person, but turning into what David describes as a “Saturn V rocket” (think NASA) when the cross-country starts.  The 17.2 hh Tailor now lives in retirement at Stonehall Farm in Virginia with his stablemate Giltedge.



See a photo of this horse on Jimmy Wofford’s flickr account. Jimmy writes: “Bill was not Karen’s sort of horse, but she gave him a good ride anyway. Here she is in her dressage test at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, South Korea. He is secretly pulling her brains out, but she is keeping an arch in the small of her back, and letting him pull her deeper into the saddle.”

The Optimist [Bill] helped to launch Karen’s incredible eventing career, being the first horse to bring her a major three-day victory, and her first ride to get named as part of an Olympic squad.  In 1984, The Optimist and Karen were the first American pair to win the Boekelo CCI3* in Holland.  Karen and The Optimist competed for US Olympic squad at the Seoul Olympics in 1988.  As an interesting twist, Jimmy came out of retirement to ride The Optimist for Karen at Rolex in 1986 and won that three-day.  



The Anglo-Arab Tamarillo “Tam” got his start as a show horse (go figure) and actually won Part Bred Championship at the National Arabian Horse Show in 1995 at age 3.  Fortunately for us all, the insanely athletic Tam found his way to Wiliiam Fox-Pitt and the pair had a successful career, including 2nd at Badminton twice, a victory at Badminton in 2004, a victory at Burghley in 2008, and 2nd at the European Championships in 2005.  Tamarillo had several untimely injuries that prevented him from fulfilling William’s Olympic goals, including having to withdraw from Athens after a stifle injury.



Supreme Rock, ridden by Pippa Funnel, won back-to-back European Champtionships in 1999 and 2001, as well as team silver at Sydney.  Supreme Rock is one of only a couple horses in history to win Badminton twice (2002, 2003).  Supreme Rock was also part of Pippa’s team that won the 2003 Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing, which, depending on how you divide up the winnings, makes Supreme Rock the largest money winner in the history of eventing.

-I want to give a special thanks to Visionaire for starting the Bracket Battle.  While she has continued the community mentality of eventing nation by saying that “we” developed this Bracket Battle, the format was her idea and her creation.
-One of the comments yesterday suggested that someone thought they could vote twice.  However, the poll is designed to only register one vote per computer, but it can seem as though it is registering multiple voted because each time you hit submit it take you to the results display.  But, as long as it says “Thank you, we have already counted your vote” then your vote is not being counted twice.

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