Hardin Towell traveled to Spruce Meadows in Calgary, Alberta, for the summer series and immediately made his presence known during the "National" CSI 5* Tournament, held June 8-12. He won the opening day's Back On Track 1.50m speed class aboard Lucifer V and then again rode to top honors in the RBC Capital Markets Cup 1.50m on Friday. Congratulations to Hardin and Jennifer Gates LLC for a great start to the summer show season!
Highlights from the June 10, 2016 Spruce Meadows Media Release include:
Jack Hardin Towell Jr. of the United States and Lucifer V won the RBC Capital Markets Cup 1.50m on Friday at the Spruce Meadows ‘National’, presented by Rolex. Eric Lamaze (CAN) and Chacco Kid finished second, while Ben Asselin (CAN) was third on Plume de la Roque.
The RBC Capital Markets Cup 1.50m had 21 entries, and eight were clear to move on to the jump-off. Setting the opening pace with a clear round was Tiffany Foster (CAN) on Cadalora, who stopped the timers in 45.02 seconds. They would eventually finish in fourth place.
Calgary’s own Ben Asselin and Plume de la Roque lowered the winning time down to 44.00 seconds to hold onto third place. Patricio Pasquel (MEX) and Candela slipped into fifth place with a time of 45.69 seconds.
Eric Lamaze (CAN) and Chacco Kid made a bid for the win with a speedy time of 42.61 seconds, but it was last to go who proved to be the best. Jack Hardin Towell Jr. and Lucifer V, a 10-year-old Westphalian gelding (Lord Pezi x Grandeur) owned by Jennifer Gates, put the pedal down to win in 40.96 seconds.
“I was lucky enough to go last and see him go,” Towell said of Lamaze. “My horse is naturally quick, so I went quite fast. I knew what I had to do, and I thought I did enough. Luckily, the last two jumps I caught right out of stride. My horse is very naturally quick. I gave it a shot, and it worked out.”
This was the pair’s second win of the week, having previously topped the Back on Track Cup 1.50m. Towell has stepped Lucifer V, his top horse, down to the 1.50m competitions this week and focused on his other horse, New York, for the grand prix.
Towell noted, “After World Cup Finals, it didn’t go the way I would have liked, so maybe I lost a little confidence in myself and Lucifer. It’s nice to go back down and gain confidence again. My plan is to do him in the grand prix next week. I entered him in the right classes. Now I have a lot of confidence in him going into next week.”
Lamaze may have a new star in Chacco Kid, but he did not go all out in this jump-off.
“Hardin is a very fast rider, and I knew that perhaps I left the door open,” he conceded. “In my case, I felt like I asked as much out of my horse tonight [as I could]. If I went after Hardin tonight, I don’t think much would have changed for me. It’s a new horse for me that I’m really happy with, that I love, so I’m a bit cautious. But I thought I put enough pressure to make him run, and at that point anything can happen.”
Lamaze termed Chacco Kid as a “great one,” and added, “He has everything to me that great horses do. After that, he has to prove me right, but I’m really excited about this horse. Winning or not, I was very excited about his jump-off.”
Hardin also placed eighth in the class aboard New York, a 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, owned by Jennifer Gates LLC.
To watch Hardin's jump-off, check out the National Friday Highlights video!
Towell Goes For Speed in Back on Track Cup
There were 38 entries that went to post for the Back on Track Cup 1.50m speed, and 14 were clear to lead the results. The fastest of those was Jack Hardin Towell (USA) on Jennifer Gates LLC’s Lucifer V, who stopped the timers in 60.86 seconds for victory.
Towell brought Lucifer V, a 10-year-old Westphalian gelding (Lord Pezi x Grandeur) to Spruce Meadows last year with some success. He has grown into one of Towell’s top grand prix horses, performing well at CSI 5* events. After a month’s break following the winter season, Towell decided to step Lucifer V down this week while his second mount, New York, does the grand prix.
“There’s nothing like being over-horse-powered in a class!” he said with a laugh. “I thought I would give it a little bit of a go. He jumped quite well, and he feels good. He always jumps well here. It was nice to step him down and go in there for both our confidence, together.”
With age comes wisdom, and Towell feels lucky that both of his top horses are maturing and growing.
He said, “It’s amazing how much they’ve grown in a year’s time. This class last year, Lucifer went in. I probably would have been close to winning, and then he saw something, spooked, and reared. It’s nice that both of my horses are 10 years old now; they’re a little older and more experienced. I feel like they’re coming along well.”
To watch Hardin's winning round, check out the National Wednesday Highlights video!
Final Results: Back on Track Cup 1.50m
1. LUCIFER V: 2006 Westphalian gelding by Lord Dezi x Grandeur - HARDIN TOWELL (USA), Jennifer Gates LLC: 0/60.86
2. ROSANA DU PARK: 2005 Selle Francais mare by Kannan - ERIC LAMAZE (CAN), Artisan Farms & Torrey Pines Stable: 0/61.47
3. DOOLEY’S DELUXE: 2004 SACHS gelding by Dinglinger x Lesotho - VANESSA MANNIX (CAN), Vanessa Mannix: 0/67.13
Final Results: RBC Capital Markets Cup 1.50m
1. LUCIFER V: 2006 Westphalian gelding by Lord Dezi x Grandeur - HARDIN TOWELL (USA), Jennifer Gates LLC: 0/0/40.96
2. CHACCO KID: 2006 Oldenburg by Chacco Blue x Come On - ERIC LAMAZE (CAN), Chacco Kid Group: 0/0/42.61
3. PLUME DE LA ROQUE: 2003 Selle Francais mare by Kannan x Adelfos BEN ASSELIN (CAN), Attache Stables: 0/0/44.00
Special thanks to Photos © Spruce Meadows Media Services/CanSport Photo Ltd. for the photographs.