Emily Mason was in the mix in a star-studded field in the ‘Saturday night under the lights’ 2* $70,000 Marshall & Sterling grand prix with Explosion W at Palm Beach Equestrian Centre, Wellington, The USA.
Only nine of the 45 starters reached the jump-off with initial clears, Emily and the Chacco Blue/Baloubet Du Rouet nine-year-old just 0.73 sec behind the winning pair, Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum on Calle 67. The USA’s Lillie Keenan took second on Skyhorse, world number one Kent Farrington finished fourth on Baltic Star 2 with Canada’s Eric Lamaze in fifth on Coco Bongo.
It was a fantastic week for Emily, who was also presented with the Martha Jolicouer leading lady rider award. She has only ridden Explosion W for six months when she started working for Poden Farm.
“This is the first night that he has been under lights, the first proper, big grand prix for him,” said Emily, originally from Kent. “He jumped really good the first day this week so we thought we’d have a bit of a go today to see how he was. We’re really happy with the way he reacted to the atmosphere. Today’s really the first time we’ve properly tried to go fast with him. Everything that I asked him, he did. He’s got a really good head on him now. He’s going to do big things I hope.”
Emily Moffitt was just a little over half a sec behind the winning time in the Hermes under 25 1.40m with Zagahorn.
Forty-six contended this $10,000 speed class with Emily and the Matterhorn/Wolfgang 14-year-old Zagahorn – previously ridden in Britain by Mark Armstrong – finishing 0.56 sec behind The USA’s Hunter Holloway and Eastern Jam. Jessica Mendoza posted a steady clear on Horst Van De Mispelaere for 15th.
Photo © Sportfot/WEF