Sarah Bagworth (Toronto, ON) and her own Malou were victorious in Sunday's $25,000 Cleghorn Golf & Sports Club Grand Prix to conclude week one of the Tryon Summer Series at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC), finishing with a jump-off time of 38.135 seconds.
Ricardo Villa (Campobello, SC) and Walnut, a 2010 mare (Costello x Potomac) owned by Juan Pablo Betancourt, claimed second place with a short course time of 38.373 seconds. Darragh Kerins (Wellington, FL) piloted Trefoil Farm LLC's Delight M-G C de Leuze, a 2009 Belgian Warmblood mare (Armitage x Unknown), to a swift 39.068-second round for third.
The course, designed by Bobby Murphy (Lexington, KY) tested 24 pairs in the first round, with seven returning for the jump-off. "The course was great. I think it was really fair for the group... it was a tough group today," Bagworth remarked. "I was actually a little nervous when I walked in. I have been a little rusty in my riding so far this summer, so I am happily surprised!"
Malou, a 2004 Swedish Warmblood mare (Maloubet de Pleville X Carthago), is not new to the jumper ring. "She [Malou] is amazing; 'professional' would be my best one-word to describe her," Bagworth explained. "She has only ever been ridden well before me. She was ridden by McLain Ward, his wife Lauren, and before that Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum. She has had the best education possible."
Bagworth has owned Malou since November of 2017. "She [Malou] has just been amazing for me, she always goes in the ring and tries extremely hard. She is extremely fair when I make a mistake, and she is very fast," Bagworth shared.