Alison Firestone And Iceburg Win $25,000 WEF Challenge
Cup Series, Round VIII In Tampa
FL March 24, 2004 Alison Firestone, 27, of Upperville,
VA, riding Iceburg owned by Mr. and Mrs. Bertram Firestone, won
the $25,000 WEF Challenge Cup Series, Round VIII at the Bob Thomas
Equestrian Center in Tampa, FL, today, besting a class of 59 entries.
Firestone placed third with Casanova, also owned by her parents,
and claimed $10,750 in total prize money for her performances. Laura
Chapot, 30, of Neshanic Station, NJ, aboard her own Little Big Man
placed second, earning $5,500. Marking Week 9 of the 10-week Winter
Equestrian Festival, the class is the last competition in the series
prior to the $30,000 Ariat WEF Challenge Cup Final CSI-W, which
will take place on March 31 in Tampa. Guilherme Nogueira Jorge of
Brazil designed the course.
12-effort Round One with Time Allowed set at 79 seconds saw 19 riders
attempt the track before Leslie Howard of Westport, CT, aboard Youp
owned by the SBlieft Group posted a clear trip. Rails fell
at every jump, however the triple at 11ABC was the bogey and caught
30 riders. Only five more horses were able to clear the course and
join Youp in the Jump-Off, including both of Firestones entries.
The first course rode great for me. It rode more difficult
than I thought it was going to after walking it, said Firestone.
Were basically riding indoors now after riding in the
big field at Palm Beach, so its a big change for the horses.
I was thrilled with both of my horses. Theyre both coming
off of a little bit of a break and they feel really fresh and ready
set seven jumps for the tiebreaker, including 11BC, with Time Allowed
at 47 seconds. Howard led off and had the second and third fences
down in 41.62 to finish sixth. Norman Dello Joio of Wellignton,
FL, riding Peace Train for Annie Shaker had a four-fault trip, also
tumbling the third fence, in 41.87 to end up fourth. Megan Lamaze
of Schomberg, Ontario, rode Chardo for Stoney Hill and lowered the
third fence as well in 45.13 to claim fifth. Firestone aboard Iceburg
was the first to post a clear trip in 41.43, which held up for the
win. The ring took a brief break while she readied her second mount,
Casanova, then posted a clear trip on him as well, though their
slower time of 45.87 left them in third place. Last to go, Chapot
posted the third double-clear performance of the day with Little
Big Man, but breaking the beam just splits behind the leader at
41.42 they had to settle for second place.
two horses back-to-back in the Jump-Off posed no problem for Firestone.
It wasnt so different from the first round, she
noted. I went 51st and 59th in the order so it was almost
just as rushed then as well. She chalked up her cool and calculated
performances to experience. After doing it so many times,
you just know how to do it. You get off one horse and once youre
off that horse its over with that horse. Once youre
on the next one, you only have to think about that one. Theyre
very different horses.
is aiming Casanova, a 14-year-old Swedish gelding by Cortez, towards
the Athens Olympic Selection Trials in June, but more immediately
has him entered in the $75,000 Grand Prix of Tampa presented by
Kilkenny/ICH on March 28. With a fast clear already in place aboard
Iceburg, Firestone did not ask for full steam on Casanova. I
knew that there was only Laura left in the jump-off, so I just went
for a slow clear with him. I figured that at the worst we would
get third with the clear round. I didnt stress him quite as
much going full, full speed, explained Firestone, but also
noted, Actually Iceburg is the faster of the two horses. If
Id gone full speed on Casanova, I dont think I would
have been as fast as I was on Iceburg. Iceburg is extremely quick.
Iceburg is a 14-year-old, gray Dutch gelding by Estaban.
compared her ride to Chapots and estimated that there was
only one turn where she notched the fraction of a second quicker
time that held up for the win. I went inside from one to two
and she went around there, but Im not sure if that really
did it, analyzed Firestone. We both left out the stride
to the orange vertical. I think I was maybe a touch faster back
on the red oxer.
indoor feel of the covered arena that will host jumper
classes all week and the finale on Sunday the $75,000 Grand
Prix of Tampa presented by Kilkenny/ICH is a nice change
according to Firestone. Its really different in this
new ring but I like it so far, said Firestone. Im
looking forward to Sunday. The Grand Prix on Sunday starts
at 2 pm.
Competition, Week 9
Earlier today, Louise Serio riding True/Balanchine for owner Fashion
Farm and Gregory Mongo claimed the Championship in the Pre-Green
Working Hunter 33. Following two days of competition
the duo notched a red ribbon in the Under Saddle, and over fences
earned second, fifth, and first to clinch the tri-color.
Smith riding Noir for owner Mrs. Quentin Alexander won the First
Year Green Working Hunter Championship. After two days of competition,
Smith and Noir placed eighth in the Under Saddle and over fences
claimed two seconds, a third, and won the class today, securing
complete results, visit www.stadiumjumping.com
WINTER EQUESTRIAN FESTIVAL TICKET INFORMATION
days for the 2004 Winter Equestrian Festival in Tampa, FL, are Wednesday
through Sunday, March 24-28, and Wednesday through Saturday, March
Bob Thomas Equestrian Center is located off Orient Road at the Tampa
Fairgrounds. For additional information, visit www.stadiumjumping.com.
ticket information for the $200,000 Budweiser American Invitational
Presented by Publix and The Tampa Tribune, visit www.TicketMaster.com
or call (813) 253-2782 or Toll-Free (877) 909-9436. Ticket prices
range from $20 to $70 for reserved seating at the Raymond James
WEF SCHEDULE OF COMPETITIONS
24 - 28 Tampa Bay Classic CSI-W (Bob Thomas Equestrian Center)
30 - April 3 Tournament of Champions CSI-W (Bob Thomas Equestrian
3 Budweiser American Invitational (Raymond James Stadium)
2004 MILLION DOLLAR GRAND PRIX SERIES
28 $75,000 Grand Prix of Tampa, presented by Kilkenny/ICH, CSI-W
3 $200,000 Budweiser American Invitational,
Presented by Publix and The Tampa Tribune
JUMPER CLASSIC CSI****
Coliseum, Charlotte, NC
9 -11 Charlotte Jumper Classic CSI****
11 $150,000 Grand Prix of Charlotte For the Charlotte Bobcat Cup