Ward Wins the $25,000 NAL Open Jumper Speed Final for the
Third Consecutive Year
PAOctober 17, 2003McLain Ward of Brewster, NY, received
a terrific present for his 28th birthday when he won the $25,000
North American League Open Jumper Speed Finals at the Pennsylvania
National Horse Show.
became the first rider to capture the title three consecutive times
with a blistering clear round in a time of 56.337 riding Labelle,
owned by Sarah Willeman and Turnabout Farm. Second place went to
Laura Chapot of Neshanic Station, NJ, riding her 8-year-old mare
Sprite, to a clear round in a time of 59.555. Kimberly Frey took
third also going clear on River, owned by Overlook Farm, Inc, in
a time of 63.831.
of field of 19, only four riders were able to negotiate a clear
round due to some tricky parts on the course.
course was a little harder then it walked, said Ward. There
were a couple of bogies that caused some problems. It helped to
be able to go at the end, you watched the others go and then you
understood what you had to do. I knew I had a fast horse and a chance
to win if the time wasnt too crazy.
first horse to go clear was not one that Ward rode, but one that
he owned. Kartousche, ridden by Mary Lisa Leffler set the tone and
the time to beat. Five rides later, Frey shaved nearly two seconds
off Lefflers round and jumped to the top of the leader board.
It began to look like Frey had it won, until Chapot. At the conclusion
of her ride, the large crowd cheered wildly for what they thought
was the winning round.
was really nice, said Chapot of the appreciative crowd. I
had seen Kim go and knew what I had to do to beat her, but I knew
McLain and Margie had fast horses, so I just wanted to put in a
smooth clear and make the last two riders try to beat me.
for Chapot, Ward did, leaving only Margie Engle and Hidden Creeks
Charlie Brown to dethrone the defending Champion. Engle had a rail
and Ward had his third consecutive title.
NAL is great, said Ward. Its an exciting speed
series with a lot of top riders and great finishes.
North American League (NAL) runs season long series in six hunter
jumper divisions Childrens Hunter, Childrens
Jumper, Adult Hunter, Adult Jumper, Pony Jumper and Open Jumper
Speed. Each series culminates with a championship final at the Pennsylvania
National Horse Show in Harrisburg, PA in October. Riders need not
be members of the NAL to compete in any qualifying classes, but
only current members earn points toward year-end finals. For more
information and a list of qualifying competitions for 2004, please
see the Ryegate Show Services website at www.Ryegate.com.