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Caroline Kellogg and Donovan

Caroline Kellogg and Donovan

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Caroline Kellogg Dominates Junior Hunters at Tournament of Champions

Written by: Emily Riden
Client: Morrissey Management Group (MMG) http://www.stadiumjumping.com/sj/index.cfm
Release Date: 2013-04-05

Tampa, FL – April 5, 2013 – Down pouring rain pelted the Bob Thomas Equestrian Center, but under the cover of the Charlie Lykes Arena, preeminent young riders competed for the Tournament of Champion’s best honors in the Junior Hunters division. Rising to the top of the elite group was Caroline Kellogg and her mount Donovan.

One of three mounts that Kellogg competed with in the Junior Hunter division, Donovan, earned the highest marks and back-to-back blue ribbons in both of today’s Junior Hunter classes.  

“He’s the best horse in the world. He’s like other horses, but he just loves people. He’s like your best friend,” Kellogg commented while affectionately patting the gelding. “I’ve had him for two and a half years, and he’s just been so perfect. He jumps so well, and he really wants to win. He’s something special.”

The indoor, Charlie Lykes Arena, utilized because of the inclement weather, gave hunter riders at the Tournament of Champions the opportunity to familiarize their horse to a different venue and to enjoy a change of scenery. It also presented a different challenge for a number of the horses, as the fully covered ring is unlike what many are used to, and can prove to be spookier. The special setting didn’t faze Kellogg and Donovan, however. In fact, she took an even more laid back approach.

“I rode him in here bareback this morning, and he never looked at anything. He’s really good about that,” Kellogg shared.

The same held true for Kellogg’s other two mounts in the division, Felicci and Zohio-S. Neither missed a beat, and Kellogg and Felicci finished third over the Robert McCune designed handy course. Finishing in second in both of the Junior Hunter classes were Grace Egan and Rio Mio.

Following the Junior Hunter classes, the Amateur-Owner Hunters returned to the Charlie Lykes Arena to vie for their division championships. Elizabeth Degolian came into the day atop the leaderboard with a first and a second place finish in yesterday’s classes, and she and Quite Simply held that lead through all three of today’s classes. The pair finished first in the handy class and third in the under saddle class before being named the division champions.

“I was thrilled with him. He was the same all week long, and he was a really good boy,” Degolian enthused. “I was so happy with him both days. I think he really enjoyed it here.”

Coming in close behind to take the reserve champion tri-color were Alexis Silvernale and Bryant Park. Silvernale and Bryant Park delivered impressive performances throughout both days of competition, today finishing third in the under saddle class, second in the handy and first over the first course.

Silvernale purchased Bryant Park, or “Tex,” from Hunt Tosh sight-unseen just a few weeks ago, but the Seattle, WA, native is already thrilled with the gelding’s performance.

“He’s wonderful. He’s got a little bit of sass to him, which I love. He jumps like a powerhouse,” Silvernale enthused. “He likes to get to the base of the jumps so that he can really jump up high over them. That’s just definitely his way of going. He’s got a very big step. When I first got him it was a little deceiving. I thought he would ride like a smaller horse, and he really doesn’t. He’s definitely got the scope for doing the 3’6” with no problem.”

Neither Silvernale nor Tosh had ever seen the 10-year-old horse go in the indoor show ring environment, so Silvernale was unsure what to expect under the lights. Any concern proved unnecessary as Tex navigated the oxers, verticals and in-and out without a second glance.

“He went out there like a trooper, and he didn’t take a misstep. He was unfazed,” Silvernale continued. “I thought the courses were great, and I’ve really enjoyed riding in this indoor arena. It’s definitely a test after riding in the huge outdoor rings last week. I just thought it felt really good. It’s deceiving, because I think the jumps look bigger indoors, but I loved it.”

The five-day Tournament of Champions, the second leg of the Tampa Equestrian Series, concludes tomorrow with the crowning of the Junior Hunter champions. In the evening, 30 of the world’s top jumpers will congregate at Raymond James Stadium for the “Super Bowl of Showjumping” – the $200,000 Gene Mische American Invitational.

For more information on the Tournament of Champions or the American Invitational please visit www.StadiumJumping.com.

 

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