WASHINGTON, DC (October 13, 2007)- The show’s highlight competition showcased Jill Henselwood expertly piloting Black Ice to capture the honor of winning the inaugural Gerald R..Ford President’s Cup Grand Prix and the top purse of $30,000. The Richard Jeffrey designed course proved to test horse and rider throughout the course, especially at the last line of four obstacles.
While difficult, the first round course was successfully completed by six of the 22 starters. First course clean rounds were turned in by Carlos Boy and Ken Berkley, Onira and Brianne Goutal, Olinda and Todd Minikus, Cincinnati Kid and Schuyler Riley, Black Ice and Jill Henselwood, and Southern Pride and Karen Cudmore.
Riders returned for the jump off with Ken Berkley and Carlos Boy setting the pace with a clean round in the time of 34.73. Next to go was Brianne Goutal and Onira who took over the lead by almost two full seconds with a clear round in the time of 32.02. Goutal held the lead until Todd Minikus swept Olinda around the course with a clean round in a blazing time of 32.37. Schuyler Riley and Cincinnati Kid conquered the course in a time of 35.24, but had eight faults that ultimately placed them in sixth place overall. Next in the ring was Canadian Jill Henselwood and Black Ice. The crowd, instantly silenced, watched Henselwood pilot Black Ice around the shortened course in a clear and unbeatable time of 32.11. While the Gerald R. Ford President’s Cup Grand Prix winner had one last horse/rider combination to go, it was clear, that the winner would be a Canadian. Last to challenge Henselwood and Black Ice, was fellow Canadian Karen Cudmore on the brilliant Southern Pride. Southern Pride jumped to the challenge of clearing all obstacles but in a slower time of 35.10 that culminated in a fifth place finish.
Final top placings included:
1st place: Black Ice and Jill Henselwood ($30,000)
2nd place: Olinda and Todd Minikus ($22,000)
3rd place: Onira and Brianne Goutal ($13,000)
4th place: Carlos Boy and Ken Berkley ($8,000)
5th place: Southern Pride and Karen Cudmore ($6,000)
6th place: Cincinnati Kid and Schuyler Riley ($5,000)