Aaron Vale (USA) and Elusive jumped clear and raced to a blue ribbon in the $137,000 Cleghorn Golf and Sports Club Grand Prix CSI 3* with an impressive jump-off time of 37.426 seconds under the lights at Tryon International Equestrian Center’s USEF Heritage Tryon Spring 6/Tryon Riding & Hunt Club Charity Show. Pepita Con Spita, a 2011 Westphalian mare (Con Spirit 7 x Come On) owned by Hays Investment Corp. and ridden by Hunter Holloway (USA) snagged the reserve ribbon with a time of 37.92 seconds. Third place honors were awarded to Tracy Fenney (USA) on MTM Apple, the 2011 Danish Warmblood mare (Favorit Ask x Willemoes) owned by MTM Farm.
Elusive lived up to the definition of his name tonight, proving he was “difficult to catch” with an astonishingly fast time and clear round. The Michel Vaillancourt (CAN) course tested 30 riders with his first round design with 11 pairs jumping clean and qualifying for the eight-fence jump-off round. Vale and his 2009 Dutch Warmblood gelding (Rodrigoo x Capfucino) took the win. “The course was, I thought, it was plenty hard,” Vale admitted, “There were probably a couple more in the jump-off than Michel wanted, but it made for a great jump-off and great sport.”