The Hampton Classic Horse Show is one of the year’s best. Lush Grand Prix field and opulent VIP tent (celebrities, TV cameras, tables adorned with sculpture and decadent catering), plus a lineup of feature classes ranging from young horse championships to Junior/Amateur Jumping Derby to $250,000 Grand Prix—it all creates a special-occasion-type feeling, the grand finale of summer.
Both of our horses jumped beautifully for Philip, with the week’s high points, for us, being Firefly’s win in the Low Amateur Speed by a staggering 3.8 seconds; and Pistoya’s performance in the $25,000 Junior/Amateur Derby, a big, technical course including water and hedge and bank jumps over which only four horses jump clear, including our girl. First to go in the jump-off (speed round that decides the winner), Philip and Pistoya galloped the course—a textbook smooth, fast ride. One unlucky rail down, but they had the time to win. Kind of a breakthrough moment: now we know they’re capable of winning seriously big classes. The mare is showing herself to be even nicer than we’d imagined.
Here’s Firefly’s blazing speed round:
Pistoya jumping clear in round one:
Pistoya’s jump-off (the distance between the first two fences walked as a galloping eight strides, which is what the other horses did; Pistoya cruised it in seven):
Feature photo by The Book, LLC.