Upperville, Va. – June 8, 2019 – International competition at the Upperville Colt & Horse Show (UCHS), presented by St. Bride’s Farm, continued on Saturday with the $35,700 Upperville Speed Stakes CSI4*, presented by GW & Wade. Twenty-seven of the world’s top athletes put the pedal to the metal trying to score the winning prize, with the United States’ McLain Ward galloping to victory aboard Noche De Ronda.
Ireland’s Alan Wade built a 13-fence track, which included two double combinations and several tight turns where athletes could slice fences to make up time. Devin Ryan (USA) was third in the ring with his own Cooper, and set the original time to beat at 65.94 seconds with a clear round. They were one of the only combinations able to leave all of the fences intact and still finish under 70 seconds, setting a pace that the rest of the field had to chase.
Ramiro Quintana (ARG) was one of the first athletes to come close to Ryan with Smith Hogan LLC’s Corento VH Dingenshof, breaking the beam in a faultless 69.58 seconds, which would hold up for the third place honors.
Although Ward only began riding Noche De Ronda earlier this year, he felt confident that he could use his mare’s long stride to his advantage, leaving out strides in the final lines. His plan worked out as he crossed the finish line without a pole out of place in 64.62 seconds to push Ryan into second place and lead the lap of honor.
Noche De Ronda is a 10-year-old Oldenburg mare by Quintender that was purchased with Ward by Marilla Van Beuren and Bob Russell. She has the attitude of a winner and Ward is excited about their future together.
Ward will return to the B&D Builders Jumper Ring I on Sunday with Beachwood Stables LLC’s Contagious to compete against the best in the world for the winning title in the $208,200 Upperville Jumper Classic CSI4*, sponsored by Lugano Diamonds.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
McLain Ward – $35,700 Upperville Speed Stakes CSI4*, presented by GW & Wade, winner
On Noche De Ronda:
“It’s an exciting new mare that we acquired in the middle of WEF this year. Marilla Van Beuren and Bob Russell were kind enough to support me and own the horse together, and I think the horse has a bright future. She has a huge jump. She’s a big, moody girl. You don’t want to mess with her. She definitely thinks her way is the right way. I think in the end that gives horses a lot of fight and a lot of grit. She jumped beautifully today.”
On his jump-off:
“The mare has a huge stride. I knew Devin was fast and that’s a quick horse, but I thought if at the three-quarter marker I could be on the pace, then the last couple lines I could leave out strides.”
On the Upperville Colt & Horse Show:
“Upperville has a warm place in my heart. I used to come down here for the grand prix with my father and I’ve won it three or four times. I have a nice history here. There has been a great movement by the horse community in this area to revive this classic show jumping event and it’s really first class.”
$35,700 Upperville Speed Stakes CSI4*, presented by GW & Wade
Place / Horse / Rider / Country / Faults | Time
1. Noche De Ronda / McLain Ward / USA / 0 | 64.62
2. Cooper / Devin Ryan / USA / 0 | 65.94
3. Corento Vh Dingenshof / Ramiro Quintana / ARG / 0 | 69.58
4. Atika Des Hauts Vents / Katherine A. Dinan / USA / 70.57
5. Cheri De Papignies / Michael Morrissey / USA / 0 | 70.73
6. Crunch De Troteval Z / Samantha Wight / USA / 0 | 71.58
7. Jakarta / Laura Kraut / USA / 0 | 71.87
8. Orso Del Terriccio / Diego Perez Bilbao / ESP / 0 | 72.46
9. Just A Gamble / Adrienne Sternlicht / USA / 2 | 84.45
10. Fasther / Lillie Keenan / USA / 3 | 88.06
11. Javas Miss Jordan / Nicky Galligan / IRL / 4 | 58.90
12. Chaccolette / Lillie Keenan / USA / 4 | 65.64