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Richard Spooner Wins The $50,000 King Shavings Grand Prix Presented By Adequan®

Indio, CA (March 3, 2003)—Richard Spooner and Robinson, owned by Half Moon Bay Investment Group, bested a field of thirty-three horse/rider combinations to win Sunday's $50,000 King Shavings Grand Prix presented by Adequan. Ryuma Hirota and Zero secured second place, with Marley Goodman and Apprapos finishing in third place.

The Grand Prix competition coincided with Seniors Day at the HITS Indio Desert Horse Park. The usual Sunday crowd was increased by a huge attendance of seniors from the region. Indio's senior citizens enjoyed free shuttle rides to the horse park and tours of the competition grounds provided by members of the La Quinta Rotary Club—this week's charity partner. HITS Director of Marketing, John Eickman, said "We are delighted that HITS Seniors Day has grown into such a popular event here in the Coachella Valley."

World-famous Grand Prix course designer, Leopoldo Palacios of Venezuela, flew in to design a challenging 14-obstacle course. The ninth fence - the triple - proved to be the downfall for a number of riders. Only three riders posted clear rounds to advance to the jump-off.

Ryuma Hirota and Zero were the first to attempt the seven-fence jump-off course. The pair incurred four faults in a time of 43.50 seconds. Marley Goodman and Apprapos were next to enter the ring. The pair completed their round in a time of 48.45 seconds with a total of eight faults. Richard Spooner and Robinson were the last to attempt the course, and a clear round looked likely until they encountered an unlucky rail at the final fence. Their time of 41.43 seconds secured their victory in the $50,000 King Shavings Grand Prix presented by Adequan.

Other major award winners at the Indio Desert Circuit V included:

Bayer Legend Leading Hunter Rider - Carleton Brooks, Atherton, CA
Bayer Legend Leading Jumper Rider - Guy Thomas, Burson, CA
HBO Junior Medal Winner - Katie Herberger, Scotsdale, AZ
Charles Owen Children's Medal Winner - Nicoletta Von Heidegger, New York, NY
Charles Owen Adult Medal Winner - Kelley Knickerbocker, San Francisco, CA

Show jumping will resume at the HITS Indio Desert Horse Park on Wednesday, March 5th and the next Grand Prix show jumping event will be the $25,000 Ariat Grand Prix on Friday, March 7th. The $150,000 Ford Grand Prix of the Desert will be the grand finale of the circuit, taking place on Sunday, March 9th at 1:00pm. The $150,000 Ford Grand Prix is the last West Coast qualifying event for the F.E.I. World Cup of Show Jumping. This class will decide which three riders from the West Coast League will compete in the World Cup Final in Las Vegas, Nevada April 16-20. The $150,000 Ford Grand Prix of the Desert typically draws a huge crowd to enjoy world-class show jumping at its best.

Also on March 9th, Fiesta Day, a celebration of Hispanic culture, returns for its third year at the Indio Desert Circuit Horse Show. Festivities with a Hispanic flavor are scheduled from 12pm until 3pm. The special guest star of Fiesta Day is famed Hollywood horse trainer and champion roper, Ramon Becerra. Ramon will work with groups of children throughout Fiesta Day as well as performing in the main show ring.

Visitors to HITS Desert Horse Park also will be treated to a day of family fun with strolling mariachis, authentic Mexican food from local restaurants, a KUNA Radio Remote broadcast, Charro and Escaramuza exhibitions (Mexican Rodeo riders), folkloric dancers and singers, free pony rides, and a bouncy house plus educational activities and career information.

Richard A Spooner and Robinson courtesy Catherine Cammett Photography

$50,000 King Shavings Grand Prix - Sunday, March 2, 2003
Indio Desert Circuit V - Indio, CA
Leopoldo Palacios, Venezuela: Course Designer
Place Horse Rider Owner Prize Money Rd 1
Rd 2
Faults JO Time
1st Robinson Richard A Spooner Half Moon Bay Investment Group $15,000 0 4 41.43
2nd Zero Ryuma Hirota Ryuma Hirota $11,000 0 4 43.50
3rd Apprapos Marley Goodman Marley Goodman / Turtle Lane Farm $6,500 0 8 48.45
4th Itano De La Bastide Susan Hutchison Jenny McLaughlin $4,000 2
5th Cellist Ali Nilforushan Ali Nilforushan $3,000 3
6th Bradford Richard A Spooner Tracey Kenly / Kenly Farms $2,500 4
7th El Campeons Petri Nicole Shahinian-Simpson El Campeon Farms $2,000 4
8th Grand Soso 2 Laura Linback Woodrun $1,500 4
9th Sandstone Laurin Gabriella Salick Sandstone Horse Sales LLC $1,500 4
10th Pop Socks Jenni Martin Temecula Valley Equestrian Center $1,000 4
11th Horalas Hap Hansen Diane Rushing $1,000 4
12th Cacique Marley Goodman Marley Goodman / Turtle Lane Farm $1,000 4

$25,000 Ariat Grand Prix Friday, March 7 1:00 pm
$150,000 Ford Grand Prix of the Desert Sunday, March 9 1:00 pm
Fiesta Day Sunday, March 9 11:00 am - 1:00 pm
Circuit Awards Sundays Prior to 1:00 Grand Prix



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