Wellington, Fla. – March 17, 2017 – Juan Matute Jr. and his 11-year-old Hanoverian gelding Quantico Ymas found themselves at the top of the pack in the open division for the first time in this winter season on Thursday afternoon. The pair claimed the win in the Grand Prix CDI4* sponsored by Havensafe Farm with a score of 68.660 percent.
Matute was thrilled with his win, and the cooler weather worked in the pair’s favor allowing Quantico Ymas to be fresh.
“Quantico is a very hot horse already so with the extra weather factor, sometimes it can be a little bit of chaos or it can be a great test with lots of energy like we did today,” Matute explained. “I think we had a couple of mistakes here and there, and a few things that we can improve upon. Overall, the energy was there and the horse was really willing to work and give me his best.
“I think that the passage piaffe tour was a wonderful today,” Matute continued. “I had a lot of energy and he was really carrying himself well and was very active behind.”
As Quantico tends to be a hot horse, Matute tried a new technique entering the ring, which seemed to pay off for Matute in his ride on Friday.
“Today I walked into the arena rather than trotting or cantering around first.,” Matute explained. “I’m trying to keep him cool and get him to understand that he can relax in the ring and it’s the same exercises that we practice at home every day.”
The duo has been partners since the gelding was 2-years-old and they have formed a special relationship.
“Our philosophy when it comes to this sport is to buy the horses young and work them up through the levels,” Matute continued. “If they are good with enough quality to stay on the team then we keep them and if not we sell them or have them on the market. Quantico was a very challenging young horse, he has jumping bloodlines and I’ve always had a special connection with him. He and I have a special bond.”
Matute will compete for Spain in next week’s Nations Cup sponsored by Stillpoint Farm and then will head up to compete in Tryon, North Carolina, before traveling back to Europe for a summer season that will kick off with the Spanish National Championships the first week in June.
Taking second place was Tuny Page and Dr. House 2, her 12-year-old Oldenburg gelding, with a score of 67.600 percent. Rounding out the top three was Shelly Francis and Patricia Stempel’s 14-year-old Oldenburg gelding, Doktor, with a score of 67.220 percent.
Competition will continue on Friday with the Junior and Young Rider Team tests as well as the 3* and 4* Grand Prix Freestyle on Friday evening.
Results: CDI4* Grand Prix
- Juan Matute Jr/ESP/Quantico Ymas/68.660
- Arlene Page/USA/Dr House 2/67.600
- Shelly Francis/USA/Doktor/67.220
- Katherine Bateson-Chandler/USA/Alcazar/66.980
- Jill Irving/CAN/Degas 12/66.720
- Jacqueline Brooks/CAN/ D Niro/66.400
- Katie Poag/USA/Zonnenkoning/66.260
- Maria Florencia Manfredi/ARG/Bandurria Kacero/66.000
- Ellesse Tzinberg/PHI/Pavarotti/65.520