Articles: Horse News
One for the Record Book! Minikus and Raether Tie for the Top in $55,000 Mary
Rena Murphy Grand Prix at Kentucky Spring Classic
Rebecca Walton for
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
at (561) 753-3389 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Lexington, KY - May 22, 2010 - Tonight's amazing finish in the $55,000 Mary
Rena Murphy Grand Prix, sponsored by Audi of Lexington, will go down in
history. The crowd went wild when Todd Minikus and Pavarotti crossed the
finish line in an exciting 35.24 seconds to take over the lead during the
jump-off, but when Cara Rather and Ublesco managed to stop the timers at the
same 35.24 seconds the night became historical.
The fantastic grand prix at the Kentucky Spring Classic was held in the Main
Stadium, site of the show jumping events for the 2010 Alltech FEI World
Equestrian Games, with the course designed by Conrad Homfeld. The first
round had 16 jumping efforts that included a liverpool, a double
combination, and a triple combination. Ten riders were able to complete the
first round without fault and advance to jump-off. The short course began
over a single vertical and a made a sharp right turn to a single oxer before
making a left turn to the oxer-vertical double combination. Riders then made
a made dash to a single vertical, which they had to slice before continuing
to a single oxer. Finally they made a full circle to a single vertical
before galloping home over a large oxer towards the gate.
Pablo Barrios has been the master of speed during the Kentucky Spring Horse
Shows, so when he rode G & C Quick Star, owned by G & C Farm, Gustavo &
Carolina Mirabal, into the ring the riders knew he would post the time to
catch. He took a sharp slice to fence six and galloped over each obstacle
with a hasty pace. The pair laid down a clean trip in 36.99 seconds to take
an early lead, but the class was not over yet and their effort proved strong
enough for fourth place.
Alexa Pessoa knew she would have to give it everything she had with Madison
when they took to the short course. In an attempt to cover as much ground as
possible they raced to the slice at fence six. They were lucky as Pessoa
almost had a miss and a rail, but Madison was as agile as ever and left each
fence in tact. The duo tripped the timers at 35.90 seconds, but even their
effort was later bested and they earned the third place prize.
Todd Minikus never gives up without a fight and tonight he gave it
everything he had aboard Pavarotti. They were able to jump into the lead
when Pavarotti let out his stride to the final fence and stopped the clock
at 35.24 seconds with all the rails in their cups. Minikus said, "I have
gone fast once or twice before, and that felt fast to me."
Cara Raether knew that she would have to leave strides out with Ublesco to
win tonight's class. "My horse is a little slower in the air, so the only
way to catch anybody was to leave out strides," she explained. "I think I
did one less than Todd to the double combination and I turned really tight
to the last vertical."
The plan paid off for Raether when she crossed the finish line at 35.24
seconds with Ublesco, tying Minikus' time to last one-hundredth of a second
and earning both riders the first place honors.
"It was crazy," exclaimed Raether. "You never think about it happening in a
grand prix, let alone for first place. It was crazy, cool, but crazy."
Minikus commented, "Overall I think that it was a very fun class. There was
a few more clean than I was expecting, but it made for a great jump-off. It
started off with Norman [Dello Joio] going around nicely, and then it just
kept getting faster and faster. I think people that were here watching got a
treat to see it come down to a tie."
Both Minikus and Raether are part of the Long List for the United States
Equestrian Team during the World Equestrian Games and will be traveling to
Europe during the summer as part of the selection process. Raether plans to
leave in just ten days and will be showing Ublesco at Falsterboro.
This year, Minikus and Pavarotti were able to win two of the five selection
trials and also had a good showing at the 2010 FEI World Cup Finals. He
feels the pair is on a good path and is well prepared for their trip to
"I think that George [Morris] has a huge responsibility coming up to pick
the team from the 15 riders that are going to Europe," noted Minikus. "I
strongly feel that we have two or three teams that could represent us here
in Kentucky and I am sure he will pick the strongest one. If I am on the
team that is great, but if I am not on it I will be helping out and pulling
for USA in any way that I can."
Tonight's class was dedicated to Mary Rena Murphy, who was very dedicated to
the sport and the horse shows at the Kentucky Horse Park before her untimely
passing. "I have been coming here for a long, long time and I am very proud
to have been a co-winner of the Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix," said
Minikus. "We all need to thank Mary Rena because she really started the
horse shows here at the horse park. It is because of Mary Rena that we have
the beautiful facility here and the World Championships are coming here. She
was a lovely lady and I think that everybody needs to recognize that it is
because of Mary Rena that we all get to enjoy this facility."
Tomorrow will mark the final day of competition during the Kentucky Spring
Classic at the world-class Kentucky Horse Park. Riders will have the
opportunity to showcase their horses during the $20,000 Bluegrass Classic,
which will get underway at 8 a.m. in the Main Stadium.
For more information about the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows please visit
Class 233, $55,000 MARY RENA MURPHY GRAND PRIX
1 943 PAVAROTTI TODD MINIKUS USA 71.74
1 518 UBLESCO CARA RAETHER USA 72.57
3 436 MADISON ALEXA PESSOA USA 69.12
4 492 G & C QUICK STARPABLO BARRIOS VEN 73.95
5 605 KELLINE FONROY CLEMENTINE GOUTAL USA 69.32
6 267 GRAF LANDO ROBERT KRAUT USA 71.51
7 340 BLUE CURACAO MARILYN LITTLE-ME USA 72.17 4
8 351 NAVAL0 DE POHETOSCHUYLER RILEY USA 72.23 4
9 611 SCARFACE NORMAN DELLO JOIO USA 73.62 4
10 360 CREME BRULE LAUREN TISBO USA 71.48 4
11 424 ROMANTOVICH TAKECHRISTINE MCCREA USA 4 69.32
12 429 PROMISED LAND JONATHAN MCCREA IRL 4 71.15