Jenni reports that Exponential was withdrawn and Sir Oberon was spun; Sally Spickard shares her picks for Best Dressed.
Top: Kevin Keane and Fernhill Flutter. Photo by Jenni Autry.
From Jenni via Eventing Nation:
We’ve had a totally unexpected turn of events following the first inspection here at the Kentucky Horse Park. Sixty-three horses were slated to present to the ground jury, and that number dropped to 62 when it was announced that Jessica Phoenix would not present Exponential. Then five horses were sent to the holding box during the course of the jog: Kyle Carter and Madison Park, James Alliston and Parker, Katie Frei and Houdini, Laine Ashker and Anthony Patch, and Ellen Doughty and Sir Oberon.
Madison Park, Parker and Houdini were all accepted upon representation. I wish I could say the same for the other two pairs. After a lengthy, tense wait, it was announced that Lainey was withdrawing Anthony Patch. She’s since posted on her Facebook page that he’s suffering from an abscess — talk about rotten luck. They’ve had an ideal spring prep for this event and were expected to put in a dominant performance this weekend. But in typical upbeat Lainey fashion, she used the hashtag #wewillriseagain in her update.
And in an outcome no one expected, Sir Oberon was not accepted upon representing for the ground jury. It’s a heartbreaking tune of events considering how fantastic Obie has looked this spring in preparation for his first four-star. And even more devastating when you consider Ellen is getting married Friday on the cross-country course. Ellen had said in an interview with the Eventing Radio Show that Obie was battling a bad rub from a bell boot, but no one expected for it to derail their go at Rolex.
It was definitely an unusually high number of pairs sent to the holding box for a first horse inspection, and with the dust settled, 60 pairs will move forward into the dressage. Sally will be following up this report with her picks for best dressed at the jog, so stay tuned for much more from Wednesday at Rolex. I’ll continue to update this post with photos from the jog, so keep checking back. Ride times have now been posted. Click here to view ride times.
From Sally via Eventing Nation:
There was plenty of fashion on display at the jogs today, and picking our favorites for best dressed guy and gal was definitely a difficult task. Someone has to do it, though, so here are our picks:
We had to give our pick for Best Dressed gal to Kristen Schmolze. Kristin was channeling her inner Top Model today, and she and Rox strutted down the jog strip like it was their own personal runway. Kristin’s choice of a fitted blazer and sunglasses really polished off her look and made her a clear standout in the Best Dressed race. If only we could give you Dubarrys, Kristin!
EN’s pick for Best Dressed gal: Kristin Schmolze. Photo by Jenni Autry.
Sharon White is our runner-up for the gals. Jenni and I ran into Sharon before she had changed into her outfit, and she said there was a “good chance” that orange would be a part of her outfit, as if there were any other choice! As expected, Sharon came out rocking her signature color. She accessorized with an orange barrette in her hair to really pull the whole outfit together. Combined with both of her horses’ dark coats, she really turned heads today.
Doug Payne and Crown Talisman. Photo by Jenni Autry.
Doug Payne gets the pick for Best Dressed guy. It was a close race between Doug and Bobby for best dressed, and perhaps I am a bit biased but I had to give it to Doug because he rocked purple so well. Doug and Crown Talisman made quite the dashing pair, and I can’t wait to watch them do dressage tomorrow.
Bobby Meyerhoff and Dunlavin’s Token. Photo by Jenni Autry.
We also loved the outfit chosen by Bobby Meyerhoff. Bobby made great use of color in his outfit as well (guys, can we thank your respective ladies for the pop of color in the outfits today?), electing to go with a bright pink shirt and a yellow accent in his breast pocket.
Other notables from today included Allison Springer, who also pulled off orange quite well, Jen McFall, and of course Kevin Keane. Kevin looked positively thrilled to be jogging down the strip for the first time, and he got one of the largest cheers from the crowd all day after Butterfly was accepted.
Jen McFall and High Times. Photo by Jenni Autry.
My other favorite moment of the day was Kyle Carter’s reaction to Madison Park’s acceptance on re-inspection. Parker slipped a bit on the concrete prior to jogging the first time, and Kyle’s relief at being accepted was apparent as he gave his horse a huge kiss and hug on the walk back to the barn. This horse’s story is nothing less than incredible, and I am pulling hard for them to have a great run this weekend.
Kyle Carter celebrating Madison Park’s acceptance. Photo by Sally Spickard.
A few horses decided that the jog was not something they cared to participate in, with James Alliston’s Parker being the most notable case. Parker seemed to think that James jumping hurdles over the flower boxes lining the strip would be a much better way to pass the time, but James took it all in stride and Parker was accepted after a re-jog.
Manoir de Carneville threw in a couple of his usual antics, but all in all Tate looked quite well-behaved for Sinead, given the ruckus he has previously caused during jog. Overall, the horses looked fabulously turned out, and the riders’ excitement was contagious. We’re looking forward to the commencement of competition tomorrow. Stay tuned for much more!