Articles: Press Release
Lorenza O'Farril Upsets Ragan Roberts
in $50,000 Rocky Mountain Grand Prix
July 14, 2002
Reported by: Marnye Langer
Not only was the prize money on the line in the $50,000 Rocky Mountain Grand Prix, July 12 of the Colorado Summer Circuit, but Ragan Roberts (AR) had the chance to win an additional $25,000. As an added bonus to grand prix riders, Helen Krieble of High Prairie Farms offered $25,000 to any rider who could win two of the three Colorado Summer Circuit grand prix events, and $100,000 if a rider won all three events. As the winner of the first grand prix, Roberts had his eye on the rider prize. When he jumped clear in this second grand prix, the $25,000 was in reach.
Thirty-five horses contested Guillherme Noguiera Jorge’s (BRA) challenging course. “I didn’t have a chance to see all the horses during the week, so the course was not too difficult,” explained Jorge of his track that took riders all around the large derby field. “The time allowed played an important part today,” he added. And in fact, the time allowed was an integral part of the course with six horses jumping clean, but accruing time faults. “Every ribbon winner except the fastest four faulter was clean,” commented jumper judge Walt Malkiewicz. “You don’t see those kind of results very often.”
Five horses managed clear rounds within the time allowed of 87 seconds, and the jump off was a case of one-upsmanship. Larry Hollahan (KY) and Sky King, first to go, had two rails and a time of 44.925. Next, Nautica, with Scott Lenkart (MN) in the irons, had the fastest time of 37.277, but a single rail relegated the pair to fourth place. Holly Shepherd (TX) piloted Shopan to a cautious, clear round in 46.412, just under the 48 second time allowed.
Roberts and Charmed were next, and they had their work cut out for them. Roberts piloted Charmed to a clear round and stopped the clock in 43.827. The question was, could Lorenza O’Farril (MEX) on Eperon d’Or beat Roberts and Charmed? “Antonio, my coach, told me I have to go for it in the jump off,” explained O’Farril of her jump off plan. “He said the four faults was really fast, so I just had to go try my best.” O’Farril followed Roberts’ tight jump off track, and on the way up the hill to the Hilton vertical, she resisted pulling on the reins. They left the rails up and stopped the clock in 42.539.
O’Farril was thrilled with her win as Eperon d’Or has been difficult to bring along. “We got him in December and he was very difficult. In a 1.4m class he left one stride out in a two stride. He was not very obedient,” stated O’Farril. We have done a lot of flatwork and although he is still a challenge he is not unrideable anymore.”
At 33, O’Farril has amassed an impressive resume. She has competed at the World Cup Finals in Sweden, and she has represented Mexico at the World Equestrian Games. “After the WEG, I took time off and had my son, Enrique. My baby is my gold medal, but the Olympics is my dream.” O’Farril feels she may have an international caliber horse in Eperon d’Or. “I really love it here in Colorado. We came four years ago and had such a good time. This is a really great place.”
Approaching the final event, the $75,000 Grand Prix of Denver on July 20, the $100,000 rider bonus is off the table, but two riders still have a chance to take home an additional $25,000. Next week, both Ragan Roberts and Lorenza O’Farril will have their eyes on the winner’s circle. Many top grand prix riders will also be vying for the same honor.
For more information on the Colorado Summer Circuit, please contact Shelly
Kremers at (303) 841-5550, extension 15 or Marnye Langer at