Local favorite Georgina Bloomberg of New York, NY, whose own Gotham North is based in North Salem, NY, wowed a hometown crowd to win the $35,700 Welcome Stake of North Salem CSI3*, presented by Douglas Elliman Real Estate, riding Quibelle on Thursday, May 16, at the 2019 Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows, running through May 19 at Old Salem Farm.
While Bloomberg, 36, hails from Manhattan, she considers Old Salem Farm the home of her passion, noting, “Old Salem is where I grew up riding and it’s where most of my childhood memories are from. I rode here for over 15 years, so to be able to come back and compete here has so much meaning for me.”
Local luck was on her side as Bloomberg bested a field of 52 horses over tracks designed by Ken Krome (USA). Thirteen horses, including two piloted by Bloomberg, advanced to a tie-breaking jump-off but none could catch Quibelle. The mare Bloomberg has ridden since 2017 stopped the clock at 41.06 seconds for the win over fellow U.S. rider Molly Ashe Cawley. Cawley and Berdien, owned by Louisburg Farm, did their best to catch Bloomberg, but settled for second in 42.17 seconds.
“This is the field I grew up on so it gives me a little bit of an advantage because I know where the slopes are and how the field will ride on any given day,” said Bloomberg of the iconic Grand Prix Field at Old Salem Farm. “This is a show we always aim our best horses at and we come out firing, so it’s nice to have it pay off.”
Bloomberg and Quibelle, a 10-year-old Hanoverian mare (Quaid x Stakkato), were in perfect sync on Thursday, but Bloomberg admits that it took them some time to get there.
“We bought her two years ago, and she’s a very talented mare with a lot of scope, but she’s a horse that took me a little time to get used to,” she said. “Up until last year, we had only jumped a 1.40m with her. This year we decided it was time for her to step up and she proved that she could do it and I could do it on her. We’ve been working to form a strong relationship.”
Of their plan for the jump-off course, Bloomberg said, “I did the five [strides] after the double and knew that I could turn back quickly and I was very quick to [fence] 14. She has a big stride across the ground and that always helps us out there on the field.”
Already a winner during the first week of the Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows, Canada’s Mario Deslauriers and Amsterdam 27 finished third on Thursday in 42.41 seconds for owner Wishing Well Farm, LLC. Captain Brian Cournane (IRL) took fourth riding Armik in 42.57 seconds, and Bloomberg posted a book-end performance with Tulara Colmine, owned by Gotham Enterprizes, finishing fifth in 43.05 seconds.
With a strong string of horses competing at Old Salem Farm, Bloomberg is still deciding whether Quibelle or Tulara Colmine will be the horse to carry her in Sunday’s $133,700 Empire State Grand Prix CSI3*, presented by The Kincade Group.
Also claiming a win in the jumper ranks on Thursday, Lillie Keenan (USA) topped the $7,500 Open Jumper 1.40m riding Be Gentle for owner Chansonette Farm, LLC.
Friday, May 17, will bring the $5,000 Old Salem Farm Grooms Class and the Palm Beach International Academy Exhibitors Party in the Overlook Terrace, both kicking off at the conclusion of competition on the Grand Prix Field. International jumper competition continues on Saturday, May 18, with the $35,700 Old Salem Farm Jumper Stake CSI3*, and the $10,000 Under 25 Grand Prix, presented by Miller Motorcars.
Spectators are welcome at the Old Salem Farm Spring Horse Shows with free general admission to Old Salem Farm Tuesday through Friday. On the weekend of May 18-19, admission is $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and children 10-15, and free for children under 10.
Stay up to date on Old Salem Farm at www.oldsalemfarm.net, and on social media with Old Salem Farm on Facebook, and @oldsalemfarmny on Twitter and Instagram. Follow for an exclusive and behind-the-scenes look at the Old Salem Farm experience, and join the conversation using #OldSalemFarm and #OSFlove.