Speed was key in Saturday’s 1.40m CSI2* class, presented by Wölffer Estate Vineyard, when up-and-coming U.S. star Mimi Gochman rode to victory on Happyfee, owned by Gochman Sport Horse LLC. Gochman and Happyfee raced to the win in 60.72 seconds, almost four seconds faster than the second-placed competitor.
“She’s supposed to be a speed horse,” said Gochman of the 10-year-old KWPN mare by Grison van den Bisschop x Zuidhorn she has been riding for six months. “She’s very, very quick. She’s scopey and has a big heart. I’m really excited about her. She’s quite quick across the ground and over the jumps. In the turns I’m able to give a bit, and she jumps straight out of stride.”
Gochman is from New York City and was excited to win at a “hometown” show.
“I get to live at home while I’m here; it’s wonderful!” she expressed. “The backdrop is beautiful with the Statue of Liberty and the buildings. It can’t get much better. The facility is really nice for the horses; there is plenty of space. I’m having so much fun, and I’m very grateful to be here.”
David O’Brien (IRL) and El Balou OLD, a 10-year-old Oldenburg stallion by Eldorado vd Zeshoek x Balou du Rouet owned by Chansonette Farm LLC, finished second. They were clear in 64.14 seconds. Third place went to Hannah Selleck (USA) and Billy de Beaufour, an 11-year-old Selle Francais gelding by Allegreto x Diamant de Semilly owned by Luja LLC, who were clear in 74.91 seconds.