NORTH SALEM, N.Y. — Four-time U.S. Olympian and New York State native Beezie Madden of Cazenovia, N.Y., was unbeatable in the $50,000 Old Salem Farm Grand Prix CSI2*, presented by The Kincade Group, riding young mount Garant on Sunday, May 12, at the Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows running May 7-12 and May 14-19 at Old Salem Farm in North Salem, N.Y.
Before Sunday, Garant, an eight-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Warrant x C’est La Vie), had never competed in a grand prix before. Despite it being her mount’s first grand prix, Madden handily took the win over Swiss team Olympic silver medalist Beat Mändli.
Nine horses advanced to the jump-off over Eric Hasbrouck’s course and Madden put her horse’s speed to the test to post the fastest tie-breaking time by nearly two full seconds in 33.84. Mändli settled for second riding Simba for Grand Road Partners in 35.46 seconds.
“He is just an eight-year-old, but I got him during the fall of his six-year-old year, so we have gotten to know each other a little,” said Madden, 55. “He has done some ranking classes, but never a grand prix and I was so pleased with him.”
Before joining the John Madden Sales string, Garant, owned by Abigail Wexner, was competitive in young horse competition and won the 2016 FEI World Breeding Jumping Championships for five-year-old horses in Lanaken, Belgium, under the direction of Dutch rider Willem Greve.
“He’s one we have a lot of hopes for!” said Madden. “He will move up to the 1.50m consistently this summer and by the end of the year we have some smaller grand prix classes planned for him again.
“Today, I saw Daniel [Bluman] and Beat go and I thought they were excellent in the turns,” continued Madden. “I wasn’t sure I could do the same, but he has a big stride. I galloped up the first line in six [strides], was pretty quick to the double, caught a long one to the next, and nailed the last jump off the turn. He was really good to me there because I don’t think he really knew where he was going at that point. He made a great effort.”
The third and fourth-place ribbons stayed in the family with Ilan Bluman (COL) finishing third in 35.58 seconds riding Eax Run Run LS, owned by Blue Star Investments, and Daniel Bluman (ISR) taking fourth in 35.75 seconds with Entano for owner Over the Top Stables, LLC. Captain Brian Cournane (IRL) rounded out the top five in 38.68 seconds aboard Colourful Lady, owned by Glenbeigh Farm, LLC.
As the first week of the Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows comes to a close, FEI riders will now turn their focus to CSI3* competition during week two, which offers the $133,700 Empire State Grand Prix, presented by The Kincade Group, on Sunday, May 19.
Spectators are welcome at the Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows with free general admission to Old Salem Farm Tuesday through Friday. On the weekends of May 11-12 and 18-19, admission is $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and children 10-15, and free for children under 10.
Stay up to date on Old Salem Farm at www.oldsalemfarm.net, and on social media with Old Salem Farm on Facebook, and @oldsalemfarmny on Twitter and Instagram. Follow for an exclusive and behind-the-scenes look at the Old Salem Farm experience, and join the conversation using #OldSalemFarm and #OSFlove.
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