Colleen Rutledge and Covert Rights Win Wire-to-Wire at Morven Park CIC3*

Colleen Rutledge and Covert Rights. Photo by Valerie Durbon Photography.

Colleen Rutledge and Covert Rights won their second CIC3* of the summer today at Morven Park International Horse Trials in Leesburg, Virginia, with a clear cross country round and 11.2 time penalties to complete on 56.9.

Colleen and “CR,” her homebred 11-year-old Thoroughbred/Clydesdale, led the CIC3* from the start, topping the division after dressage yesterday on 39.7, their second career score in the 30s at this level. After Plantation Field, when CR scored 47.3 to sit well off the pace after the first phase, Colleen said she carefully read the judges’ comments and studied the video to discern where she lost marks.

“Their comments were ‘needs more collection,’ so I pushed him more forward than what they wanted to see. The judges wanted to see a more connected, more controlled test. At Morven I made it a point to go in the ring being more mindful and going a bit less forward than I did at Plantation, having more connection and trying to get him to sit on his hind end more,” Colleen said.

“It wasn’t a mistake-free test. We are still a tiny bit tense in the walk, and in the extended trot I lost the rhythm halfway through it, so he fizzled on me a little bit. It’s getting there. He’s starting to want to put in a little more pizazz, which is exciting.”

Colleen and “CR” added one rail and 2.0 time penalties in show jumping this morning to hold onto the lead, and marking a definite improvement over their round at Plantation Field when they had an uncharacteristic six rails down.

“You have to look back at your mistakes and think about what went wrong because if not you’re doomed to repeat them,” Colleen said. “He showed me that if I leave him alone, he can jump everything fine. When I try to help, he listens too well and I bury him. I firmly take the blame, and again the rail we pulled today was because I tried to help him in a line and I buried him.”

This is their second win in as many months, as Colleen and CR also won the Richland Park CIC3* on a record dressage and finishing score of 33.3. At the time, Colleen said she wanted to win Richland, Plantation Field and Morven Park on her way to the crown jewel of their season at the Dutta Corp Fair Hill International CCI3* in two weeks. Two out of three so far — not bad!

But Colleen said she didn’t set out of the start box today gunning for the win. “I didn’t go out chasing the time. I went out looking to have a good gallop and continue our fitness work for Fair Hill. I know he can make the time and he can make it easily.”

Colleen commended the work of Morven Park’s organizers and grounds crew, who have worked tirelessly aerating the ground after an ill-timed dry spell in the mid-Atlantic region over the past two weeks.

“I am so impressed by what Morven is doing. I love supporting my local events. They are trying to make this into a world-class event. This ground is better than what I have at home to gallop on it, so why wouldn’t I use it?”

Buck Davidson and Jak My Style. Photo by Valerie Durbon Photography.

Three of the seven competitors in the CIC3* completed the event. Buck Davidson and Kathleen Cuca’s Jak My Style, a 12-year-old Thoroughbred gelding, finished second on 64.8, adding one show jumping rail and 6.0 cross country time penalties to their dressage score.

Buck withdrew his other two rides, Copper Beach and Carlevo, as planned ahead of cross country, as he always intended to only run the combined test at Morven Park. Plantation Field CIC3* winner Copper Beach, owned by Carl and Cassie Segal and Sherrie Martin, will next head to Les Etoiles de Pau CCI4* in France, with Carlevo going on to Fair Hill.

Holly Payne Caravella and Never OutFoxed. Photo by Valerie Durbon Photography.

Holly Payne Caravella and the Fox Syndicate’s Never OutFoxed jumped to a second-place podium finish in the U.S. Open $50,000 Arena Eventing Team Competition at the Central Park Horse Show last Saturday in New York, and today they stormed around clear and inside the time to finish third in the CIC3* on 70.3.

The remaining competitors in the CIC3* division retired on course or withdrew prior to running cross country. Click here to see full results from the CIC3* division.

Allie Knowles and Sound Prospect. Photo by Valerie Durbon Photography.

Allie Knowles and Sound Prospect Win Advanced

Allie Knowles continued her comeback tour with a win in the Advanced division on 42.6 with Sound Prospect, a 15-year-old Thoroughbred owned by Sound Prospect LLC, adding one show jumping rail and 5.2 cross country time penalties to their dressage score.

Colleen Rutledge and UNO, her own 11-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare bred by Jane Sleeper, finished second on 51.0 with one rail down in show jumping and 10.4 cross country time penalties.

Colleen Rutledge and UNO. Photo by Valerie Durbon Photography.

Ema Klugman and Bendigo, her own 15-year-old Trakehner, jumped clear in show jumping and added 7.6 time penalties on cross country to finish third on 64.2. Cindy Anderson-Blank and Phyllis Dawson’s Windchase Phoenix Star finished fourth on 80.6, with Ema Klugman also finishing fifth with her own Joker’s Win on 89.5.

The remaining competitors in theAdvanced division retired on course or withdrew prior to running cross country. Click here to see full results from the Advanced division.

Ema Klugman and Bendigo. Photo by Valerie Durbon Photography.

Looking to the CIC2*, Autumn Schweiss and her own Oakport Strauss, a 13-year-old Irish Sport Horse, added 2.0 cross country time penalties to their dressage score to win on 59.8. Delaney Vaden and her own RedRox Jazzman, a 13-year-old American Warmblood, finished second on 61.7. Nita Sanfilippo and her own Alarmabull, a 10-year-old Thoroughbred, placed third on 67.2.

We have to send a special shout out to friend of EN and super mom Sara Lieser, who completed her first CIC2* today with her own Osh Kosh, a 12-year-old Thoroughbred. “Learning to really ride at this level has been harder than I could have imagined, but I continue to feel like we’re moving in the right direction, and I’m enjoying the journey.” Cheers to you, Sara!

Morven also ran two Open Intermediate divisions, with Kristen Bond and Liz Bond’s Enough Already, a 9-year-old KWPN gelding, winning the A division on 28.8, adding just 3.6 cross country time penalties to their dressage score.

Cheers to EN’s rockstar data analyst Maggie Deatrick, who jumped clear around the Intermediate-A division cross country with her own Divine Comedy, a 15-year-old Thoroughbred better known as “Dante.”

Arielle Aharoni and Christine Aharoni’s Dutch Times, a 9-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, finished just 1 second over the optimum time on cross country to add 0.4 penalties to their dressage score and win the Open Intermediate-B division on 33.4.

Click here to view full live scoring from all divisions at Morven Park. The action continues tomorrow in the CIC*, Preliminary and Novice divisions. Many thanks to Valerie Durbon Photography for taking beautiful photos today at Morven. Go Eventing.