WELLINGTON, Fla. — Georgina Bloomberg was named the Martha Jolicoeur Leading Lady Rider (in memory of Dale Lawler) on March 17 at the end of week 10 of the 2018 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, Fla.

Bloomberg is getting onto a rhythm in the later weeks of the Winter Equestrian Festival after a late start to the season.

“I was up in New York for my son to finish school,” she said, “so it took a little bit longer for me to get back in the groove and get back to jumping bigger jumps. I sort of decided to take my time and come back when I was ready, so therefore my horses were a little bit late peaking.”

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She was pleased with Manodie II H, a 13-year-old Oldenburg mare by Carthago x Zeus she started riding in the spring of 2016.

In the $132,000 Horseware Ireland Grand Prix CSI 3* Bloomberg and Manodie II H, owned by Gotham Enterprizes LLC, were quick in 73.53 seconds with four faults to finish third.

This was their first grand prix under the lights together.

“I don’t have a solid grand prix horse at the moment, so she’s my best horse,” said Bloomberg. “I think that she will take that next step up, but she just needs a little bit more time. I was a little nervous, and I think as Ian pointed out, a lot of the horses had trouble focusing on the plank, as she did. It got us a little bit off track coming around to the oxer, and I made a mistake as a rider which cost us the rail. She put in a great effort, and it was really nice to have her go for the first time under lights and know that she can do it confidently and that I just need a little bit more time coming back to knock the rust off.”

Both second place finisher, Ian Millar and Bloomberg were happy to see 21-year-old Spencer Smith take his first grand prix win.

“I’ve always said that I believe in the future of the sport,” said Bloomberg. “I know that people have said that there’s a gap coming, and the future is doomed. I’ve always said that I completely disagree. I’m a big supporter of the [FEI North American] Young Rider Championships and the next generation. I think this proves it, and it’s really just wonderful to see younger riders coming up and showing what the next generation is going to have.”

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