We’ll be seeing Jennie Brannigan on a new upper-level horse this spring, as she’s been given the opportunity to campaign Aspire R for Cory Walkey.
Previously a ride for Heath Ryan, the 10-year-old Australian-bred warmblood/Thoroughbred gelding (by Aspen out of The Temptress) has completed two CCI3* events in Australia, most recently finishing second in the Tamworth CIC3* this past August.
Cory, who runs Mill Creek Equestrian Center in Topanga, California, purchased the horse from Pamela Shaw and asked Jennie to take the ride.
“Cory has known me since I was a working student in California, and it’s really cool to have a connection back to the West Coast again,” Jennie said. “She asked me to take the ride, and we’ll see how it goes. He might be for sale in the spring, but we want to get him to some shows first.”
One of those shows will be the Wellington Eventing Showcase, which is scheduled for Feb. 4-5, 2016, with a hefty $75,000 prize pot. Jennie said she’s excited to compete at Wellington with both Aspire R and Catalina, owned by Candace Kircher and Tim and Nina Gardner.
“He’s a really cool horse, and it’s been fun to have another nice one in the barn,” Jennie said. “I’ve been jumping him in a rubber snaffle, and he’s a very careful jumper. He’ll measure the jump, but he also has his own engine, so you’re not kicking him along.”
Jennie hasn’t cross country schooled the horse yet, but she will soon with a plan of aiming to run the Preliminary or Intermediate at the Ocala Horse Properties Winter I H.T. on Jan. 9-10. She also might run him at Rocking Horse Winter I H.T. on Jan. 29-30.
“Cory is really grateful to Pamela Shaw for the opportunity of being able to purchase the horse, and she’s also really excited for Wellington and to meet the Gardners and Candace,” Jennie said.
Stay tuned for more on the Wellington Eventing Showcase. Invitations have officially been sent out to the riders, and we’ll be bringing you a look at the full entry list just as soon as we can.