NORTH SALEM, N.Y.— The No. 2-ranked rider in the world, McLain Ward (Brewster), won the $35,000 Welcome Stake of North Salem riding HH Carlos Z and finished second aboard Tina La Boheme on Thursday, May 18, at the 2017 Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows, held at Old Salem Farm in North Salem.

Ward and HH Carlos Z, a 15-year-old Zangersheide gelding, entered the ring from the 22nd position in the original order, and cleared Alan Wade’s speed track in 67.23 seconds for the win. At the conclusion of the 58-horse class, Ward’s time stood and he and HH Carlos Z, owned by Double H Farm, picked up their second FEI win at the Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows after topping the $35,000 New York Welcome Stake last week.

Riding second in the original order aboard Tina La Boheme, Ward set an early pace of 68.55 seconds to finish second riding the 10-year-old mare he co-owns with Susie Heller. Third place was presented to Peter Wylde of Massachusetts riding Paloma for owner Kathleen Kamine in 70.55 seconds, while Amanda Derbyshire of Great Britain took fourth aboard Lady Maria BH in 70.75 seconds for Gochman Sport Horse, LLC. Georgina Bloomberg of North Salem rounded out the top five in the irons of Manodie II H after stopping the clock at 71.43 seconds.

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Ward and HH Carlos Z have collected several wins together at Old Salem Farm over the last few years, and he admits that the mount thrives on the conditions of the Grand Prix Field.

“He’s a very good horse on grass in general,” said Ward, who won 2017 Longines FEI World Cup Final earlier this year in Omaha, Neb., on HH Azur. “Venues like Old Salem Farm really suit him. He seems very comfortable on the turf and has a lot of success on it.

“I love it here,” continued Ward, who hails just minutes from Old Salem Farm at his own Castle Hill Farm in Brewster. “It is very exciting to have these shows here, as well as the American Gold Cup in the fall, and I am proud to be part of these events.”

Not just a winner at Old Salem Farm, Ward has had the ride on HH Carlos Z since 2014 and has campaigned the gelding all over the world, saying, “His best quality is that he is super-careful. He really doesn’t want to touch the fences, and he is very fast, so you can basically take a risk everywhere. He has been a great winner for me.”

Earlier in the day on Thursday, Ward also topped the $10,000 Open Jumper 1.45m riding his own Balando on the Grand Prix Field at the Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows.

Content contributed by Old Salem Farm.