Marilyn Little continued her winning ways this afternoon at the Carolina International in Raeford, North Carolina, taking home first and second in the Southern Pines Equine Associates CIC1*, which ran in the traditional format with show jumping being the last phase. So just an hour after a clear round on cross country to win the CIC2* with RF Scandalous, Marilyn switched gears and headed in to the show jumping ring for the one-star.
RF West Indie and RF Overdressed had been in first and third throughout the weekend, sitting on their dressage scores of 34.9 and 36.8 after the first two phases of competition. Both jumped double-clear to finish on their initial scores and head home with the first and second place ribbons.
RF West Indie, an 8-year-old Hanoverian mare owned by Raylyn Farms, has placed in the top three in several two-stars over the last year, winning at Galway in October but unfortunately unseating Marilyn at Pine Top in February. However, part of Marilyn’s strategy for moving horses through the levels is to move them up and down for the purpose of building confidence.
“I’ve had some amazing runs on Indie,” Marilyn said. “Things happen when you’re trying to win. I’ve had some rounds where I’m taking a cut at it and things didn’t work out so well. I think it was a really good moment for a confidence building run.”
Indie was qualified in the 7-year-old Young Jumper Championships last year but became focused on eventing during the summer.
“It was a building weekend for her and it’s wonderful for a horse that’s 8 years old that has been asked to do so much in two different sports,” said Marilyn, who pointed out Indie is only one year into FEI classes, but she went back to the barns feeling very confident today.
Marilyn sought redemption this weekend after picking up a runout at a corner at Red Hills with RF Overdressed, an 8-year-old Hanoverian, an error his rider considers “a blip,” especially considering the horse’s winning record at the one-star level.
This week the gelding, owned by Jacqueline Mars, Robin Parsky and Raylyn Farms, was foot-perfect and finished on his dressage score for second place behind his stablemate. “He gave me a great ride around cross country last weekend but came back even better this weekend. He came back from that mistake and got stronger and more confident. He left the starting box this week ready for anything.”
Both RF West Indie and RF Overdressed are entered in the two-star at Ocala as well as The Fork the week prior. If she takes Overdressed to The Fork she plans to run him slowly. “I think it’s a very educational track and also a great fitness track. [RF Overdressed] is coming from Germany and doesn’t have a huge amount of experience with terrain.
“It’s very easy to just compete in Florida, but you do have to put the miles on the trailer because that is in his best interest to see and be exposed to those kinds of questions.”
Doug Payne and Lysander, who were second after dressage and cross country pulled a single rail in show jumping today, which was enough to drop them to third place. Heidi White and Captain Fernhill ultimately moved up to fourth with their clear round, while Will Faudree and Socialite rounded out the top five, having finished on their dressage score.