As one of five CCI3* events in North America, the Jersey Fresh International Three-Day Event is generally the final qualifying event in the U.S. for the American WEG team. But while Canada has sent some of their heavy-hitters to contest the CCI3* at Jersey Fresh, the American contenders have chosen instead to head to Bromont next month. That leaves Jersey Fresh ripe for the picking for some young horses and up-and-coming riders.
- Historically, it has not been too difficult to make the time in the CCI3* at this event. An average of 33.5% of competitors made the optimum in 2015 and 2016 when the weather cooperated, as it looks to be this weekend. Expect eight to nine riders to add nothing to their dressage scores on Saturday.
- The dressage leader has won in two of the last three runnings of this division.
- RF Eloquence and Ellie MacPhail O’Neal have stepped up their game on the flat in the last two calendar years, and aside from scoring in the 30s twice at Red Hills, they’ve clocked in mid-20s scores at all of their Advanced and CIC3* starts.
- Long Island T has an average of 26.92 in his two CIC3* starts with Boyd Martin, and has landed in the 20s in four of his seven starts at the A/CIC3* levels.
- Pavarotti and Jessica Phoenix consistently score around the 30 mark, with a minimum of 27.2 and a maximum of 31.5 in their eight Advanced/3* starts over the past two calendar years.
Cross Country Machines
- Military Mind and Whitney Mahloch have never finished with more than 6 seconds over the optimum time when running clear across the country, and in fact average 8.17 seconds inside the optimum in all of their clear runs at the Advanced/3* level. This will be their second attempt at CCI3* after a rider fall kept them from completing at Fair Hill last fall.
- Magnum’s Martini has only two CIC3* runs under his belt, one in 2015 and another this past spring at Red Hills, but he’s finished no more than 10 seconds over the time with clear rounds under Nilson Moreira da Silva between the two starts. This is the horse’s first CCI3*.
- Atlantic Domino and Jacob Fletcher are another pair who have been notably fast when achieving a clear cross country round, clocking in an average of only 4.75 seconds over optimum time at the Advanced/CIC3* level. One of the more experienced horses in the field, Atlantic Domino will be looking for his first clear CCI3* completion after a banner spring in which he placed second at Red Hills and won Chattahoochee Hills.
Show Jumping Powerhouses
- Atlantic Domino is also very strong in the jumping phases, having never had a rail when show jumping is held last, including his first CCI3* completion at Ballindenisk in 2014. This pair has jumped clear in eight of their 11 show jumping rounds at the level.
- Islandwood Captain Jack is making his first CCI3* under the guidance of Caroline Martin, with a record that includes three-for-three clear show jumping rounds in his first season at the level.
- Voltaire de Tre has had only four starts at the Advanced/CIC3* levels after moving up this winter, but under Leslie Law he has jumped four clear show jumping rounds, adding time penalties only once.
Jack of All Trades
- RF Cool Play has only two starts at this level after moving up to Advanced at Carolina International with Lynn Symansky, but they’ve been extremely solid for a green horse. With scores in the low 30s, clear cross country rounds averaging 25 seconds behind the fastest round, and no penalties added in either show jumping round, RF Cool Play could be a contender this weekend in his first CCI3* start.
- Boyd Martin moved up his homebred Ray Price this winter as well, competing in three starts throughout the season. Ray Price’s three dressage scores have all been sub-35, his cross country rounds have all been within 25 seconds of the leaders, and he’s had no rails in two of his three show jumping rounds.
PREDICTED WINNER: Jacob Fletcher and Atlantic Domino
Keep Your Eye On…
- Boyd Martin and Ray Price
- Lynn Symansky and RF Cool Play
- Boyd Martin and Long Island T
- Leslie Law and Voltaire de Tre
- Jessica Phoenix and Pavarotti