Torano Stars in the 5* Grand Prix Qualifier at the 2023 Hampton Classic Horse Show

Torano Stars in the 5* Grand Prix Qualifier at the 2023 Hampton Classic Horse Show

Americans swept the podium in Friday’s $78,000 Douglas Elliman 5* Grand Prix Qualifier presented by Longines at the Hampton Classic Horse Show, which saw only six clear rounds from a field of 45 entries representing 14 nations. Of the three riders who returned over the shortened jump-off track, Jimmy Torano led the way with his winning time of 41.99 seconds aboard Chewbacca HCC.

Spectators glimpsed an impressive field of entries aiming for Sunday’s $425,000 Longines Hampton Classic 5* Grand Prix as they competed over Friday’s 16-effort, 1.60m course designed by Alan Wade for the $78,000 Douglas Elliman 5* Grand Prix Qualifier presented by Longines. Torano ultimately claimed top honors with the 11-year-old Holsteiner gelding owned by Isalou Inc. and Jet Equestrian Group LLC, tripping the timers in 41.99 seconds, a blazing 3.8 seconds ahead of second-place finisher Brianne Goutal-Marteau (USA).

“With Carly (Anthony) going first and having a rail down, Brianne played it very safe, which opened the door for me,” Torano said. “Going last put me in the driver’s seat. I was very quick through the first part of the course and felt like I’d done enough, then really took it easy going over the last two jumps.

“My horse has a big scope,” he added. “He’s very careful and has a lot of ability. The rollback to the Hermès oxer (in the first round) was difficult for sure – it wasn’t a wide jump, but I think a lot of people may have underestimated it and touched the back rail. Going so late in the order, I overrode it a little, and my horse just jumped fantastic. I feel great going into Sunday’s Grand Prix. This horse won the Thursday qualifier and Sunday grand prix back-to-back at Lake Placid, and it would be great to do that again here.”

Goutal-Marteau posted the only other double-clear time in 45.79 seconds to earn second aboard S&L Marlon VD Heffinck (Desir Du Chateau), S&L Farms’ 11-year-old Belgian Warmblood stallion. Jump-off pathfinder Carly Anthony (USA) finished third with Portfolio Horses LLC’s 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding Heavenly W (Calvaro Z) on a four-fault score.

Three horse-and-rider combinations went clear over the initial course but elected not to return for the jump-off: Daniel Bluman (ISR) and Ladriano Z (Lawito) (0/70.51), Devin Ryan (USA) and Eddie Blue (VDL Zirocco Blue NOP) (0/71.08), and Jessica Springsteen (USA) and Stone Hill Farm’s Don Juan Van De Donkhoeve (Bamako de Muze) (0/71.87).

Kelli Cruciotti Vanderveen (USA) and Rodrigo Pessoa (BRA) maintain first and second place in the $30,000 Longines Rider Challenge with 215 points and 206 points, respectively. Anthony has moved into third with 170 points. The Challenge, which awards $30,000 and a Longines watch to the rider accumulating the most points in the week’s Open Jumper classes, will be awarded Sunday following the $425,000 Longines Hampton Classic 5* Grand Prix.