Rebecca Buehler had one goal this weekend: to complete her second attempt at Advanced with her own Brighton. Needless to say, she surpassed that goal when the pair show jumped a double clear round to win the $4000 Tin Men Supply Advanced at Aspen Farms in Yelm, Washington.
“I suppose it hasn’t really sunk in,” said Buehler, who was all smiles but in slight disbelief. “I’m just really proud of him. He jumped better than I expected and straighter than I expected.”
So what will she buy with her cash prize?
“A car!” she laughed.
Whether it’s for winning or losing, the Washington native has learned not to take a single ride on the Thoroughbred gelding (Trident – Tiz Mine) for granted.
“I lost a horse this spring, so I’ve learned to appreciate every ride because it might be your last one,” she said. “We’ve come a long way and he is one of my best friends. It’s easy to get going and be thinking about what you’re doing next, and forget that it’s your partner underneath you, trying his heart out.”
“If someone is going to win, it’s best that it’s Rebecca!” said third-placed Anna Collier, who also coaches Buehler. “It’s almost as good as winning it yourself.”
Collier and her Thoroughbred Gleaming Road (Cahill Road – Aspiring Proof) had zero jumping and only one time penalty over a tough course.
“I wasn’t very tidy but he didn’t catch a single fence. This was our first clean round at Advanced,” she said. “I love going to the barn and seeing this horse every day. He’s really a character and having that bond with your horses makes you want to get up in the morning.”
Jordan Linstedt and Revitavet Capato were in the lead after cross-country, and it looked like they were going to secure the win. However, they pulled the back rail on the final oxer on course, which bumped them into second place.
Jil Walton and Dee Dee Chaser placed fourth with one rail down, and Emily Pestle-Dimmit and Airlington jumped a beautiful clear round that was just a bit slow, giving them a fifth-placed finish.
This is only the second year that Aspen Farms has hosted the Adequan USEA Gold Cup/PRO Tour Series division, and the seventh year that the event has been run. Riders, spectators and volunteers alike were grateful for a sunny and dry weekend and even more grateful for event organizer Jonathan Elliott, who has done a fabulous job developing what was once a patch of forest into a top-class horse trials.
“It’s exciting to be part of the PRO Tour and Adequan USEA Gold Cup,” said Elliott. “It’s great that we have it in the Pacific Northwest now. That’s what is hard about this country - everything is so spread out. We try to organize everything from a rider’s perspective, so we put a lot of effort into the sponsors and the awards and it’s great to have the Tin Men [Supply Company] add to the prize money, so if you’re successful on the weekend, you’re really rewarded for it.
“We ran our first event in 2007 and so this is seven years running. We have great volunteers, and a lot of them have been with it since the start,” said Elliott. “We try to allow more horses in each time but we don’t want to overload it; then it wouldn’t be as good of an experience for everyone. I think there were a good 80-100 riders who didn’t get off the wait list.”
About the Adequan USEA Gold Cup and PRO Tour Series
Qualifying for the 2014 Adequan USEA Gold Cup began last fall with the Plantation Field CIC*** (PA) and the Woodside CIC*** (CA) and features 11 qualifying competitions throughout the United States at the Advanced Horse Trials and CIC3* levels. The final will take place at the Nutrena USEA American Eventing Championships September 2014 in Tyler, Texas. Riders who complete a qualifier earn the chance to vie for $40,000 in prize money in the Adequan Advanced Division and the title of Adequan USEA Gold Cup Champion.
The Adequan USEA Gold Cup Series is made possible through the support of its many sponsors: Adequan; Standlee Forage Nunn Finer; SmartPak Equine; Nutrena; Broadstone Equine Insurance Agency, Point Two; Dubarry; and FITS.
The PRO Tour Series consists of 13 premier destination events in the United States and Canada in 2013/2014 featuring the best riders and most entertainment. Riders and Horses are awarded points on the PRO Tour Rider Leader Board and PRO Tour Horse Leader Board. Riders can also earn points on the PRO Tour Series at the Intermediate or two-star level for the Multi Radiance Intermediate Challenge. The 2014 Multi Radiance Challenge Leader Board Champion will win a Multi Radiance MR4 ACTIVET Portable Laser System.
The Professional Riders Organization would like to thank the following sponsors for their support of the 2014 PRO Tour Series: Martin Collins USA, The Official Footing of PRO; Multi Radiance Medical, The Official Laser Therapy of PRO & Sponsor of the Multi Radiance Medical Intermediate Challenge ; Tex Sutton, the Official US Equine Air Carrier of PRO; SSG Riding Gloves; Finish Line Horse Products; Midlantic Ltd.; and Mythic Landing Events.