Articles: Press Release
Hap Hansen Chalks Up Win Number Ninety Seven at $30,000 Merrill Lynch
Oaks Blenheim June Classic Grand Prix
PHOTO CREDIT: Hap Hansen and His Horse Win $30,000 Merrill Lynch Oaks
Blenheim June Classic. Photo (c) JumpShot 2005.
Kenneth Kraus of Phelps Media Group, Inc. at (561)
753-3389 or at email@example.com
Wellington, Fl - June 20 - Hap Hansen's march toward one hundred career
grand prix show jumping victories continued on Sunday, June 19, 2005, as
he posted his ninety-seventh career win at the $30,000 Merrill Lynch
Oaks Blenheim June Classic Grand Prix.
Hansen, who finished fourth in the Sunday Grand Prix last week at the
Oaks, not only notched the win this week but totally dominated the San
Juan Capistrano event, finishing first, third and fourth. Last year
Hansen finished second, third and fourth.
He was victorious on Nancy Markwell's 11 year old Hanoverian gelding His
Horse. He picked up third place honors on ABC Lanzelot, a 10 year old
Oldenberg gelding owned by Linda Smith and finished fourth on the
Horizon East Investment Group's Double Dutch, a 10 year old Dutch bred.
Hansen was double clear on all three mounts. Only Leslie Steele,
finishing second, prevented the clean sweep.
Hansen said that he thought his first time in the jump-off was going to
hold up. "I was first to go in the jump-off on Double Dutch," he said.
"He was clean and I felt like he did the turns really well. He's a huge,
big mover, so I thought he covered the ground really well and at the
time, I really thought Double Dutch was going to be the winner. Then
with Lanzelot, I did the same track and ended up a couple of fractions
faster than Double Dutch, so he went into the lead with both horses in
the 47 second range," Hansen explained.
That's when Leslie Steele took over the lead and put all the pressure
back on Hansen with his final mount. "Leslie knocked a couple of ticks
off of Lanzelot's time to take over the top spot, still in 47," said
Hansen. "So, at that point, I knew, I just had to go as strong as I
could on His Horse. I said to myself, 'nothing ventured, nothing
gained,' and went for it."
Hansen and His Horse, posted a three second victory. "You had to do a
right turn from fence one to a long gallop to fence three in the
jump-off," reported Hansen. "I think I made up my time by angling fence
number one more. He's much gamer about doing something like that. So I
got the angle on one and got right on it to number three. I think that's
where I probably won it, because I hit fence three dead on. From there,
I did all the inside cuts and made it home unscathed. I got lucky and he
got the job done for me," Hansen said.
Where did that luck come from? Owner Nancy Markwell and a couple of the
grooms in the stable felt it might have been a lucky rabbit that did the
trick. Not a rabbit's foot, but the entire rabbit. Markwell rescued a
baby bunny from her dog Oreo's mouth and brought her "lucky" rabbit with
her to the show on Sunday.
"She had it in a cage in the tack room. The grooms called it the lucky
bunny. Did it bring me luck? I don't think so, but I'll take luck any
way I can get it," laughed Hansen.
Other members of the Hap Hansen Stables had excellent performances this
week at the Oaks June Classic II.
Nancy Markwell, riding her horse Ideal, was Champion Amateur Owner
Hunter 36 and over. "She rode great on very seasoned veteran, Ideal,"
assessed Hansen. "She rides well and has a great eye."
Rising young star Bliss Heers won twice in equitation, coming home
victorious in both the USEF Talent Search and the CPHA Medal. With
those victories this week, Heers is now qualified for all of the medal
finals. "Bliss had a great week," said Hansen. "School finally
finished for her. She just graduated with top honors, so I think it
helped that school is behind her. She rode great in the equitation and
she did really well on her new jumper, Princess," he said. " It was her
first show with her and she was clean in every class." Heers was also
double clear on both of her horses in the Low Junior A/O Jumper Classic,
finishing fifth on Princess 315.
Following a quiet week this week, Hansen will be headed for Spruce
Meadows in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, for Canada One on June 29 - July 3,
2005, and the North American on July 5-10, 2005. In addition to his
three Grand Prix horses, Hansen will have his fine string of young
horses from the Plaid Ranch and Bliss Heers will be making the trip as
Official Results - $30,000 June Classic Grand Prix, San Juan Capistrano,
Course Designer: Phillip J. DeVita
1 His Horse- Hap Hansen
2 AW Dragonfly -Leslie Steele
3 ABC Lanzelot -Hap Hansen
4 Double Dutch- Hap Hansen
5 Quito's Son -Laura Gerst
6 Pracht -Helen Mcnaught
7 Camaron Hills Shanroe Molly Talla
8 Eezy Duncan Mcfarlane
9 AW Butterfly Hulal-Leslie Steele
10 Presley Boy Radio Formula- Jaime Azcarraga
11 Lavaletto 4 -Misti Cassar
12 Leapy Hill -Molly Talla