Jimmy Torano of Wellington, FL, won the $10,000 Brooks Brothers Welcome Stake, presented by Manchester Designer Outlets, on Thursday, August 3, during the fifth week of competition at the six-week Vermont Summer Festival running through August 13 at Harold Beebe Farm in East Dorset, VT.
Course designer Manuel Esparza of Mexico City, Mexico, is setting the tracks during week five of the Vermont Summer Festival after assisting with the course building at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In a five-horse jump-off, Torano produced double-clear efforts on two of the four horses he entered in the class. His winning mount, Armageddon, stopped the clock at 38.82 seconds for the victory, while Umberto Ter Wilgen Z crossed the timers in 39.67 seconds for second place.
Of Esparza’s course, Torano noted, “When I walked it, I thought it was quite a nice track. There were a couple tricky lines, but nothing out of the question. He does a very good job and has built some very high-profile, high-caliber courses around the world.”
Canadian rider Harold Chopping, who is now based in Southern Pines, NC, was first to tackle Esparza’s jump-off track and set the pace with a clear round in 42.62 seconds riding Basje for third place. Brazil’s Gabriel Rodrigues Honório took fourth place with a four-fault jump-off ride in 42.62 seconds aboard Tabasco de la Nutria. Rounding out the top five, Amanda Strain of Deep River, CT, elected to save her horse, Casino Royale, and withdrew from the jump-off after finishing the first-round track fault free.
“This horse is like an ATM machine,” joked Torano, who has piloted Armageddon, a 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding sired by Solitair and owned by Cenci Jumper, LLC, to seven blue ribbons during the 2017 Vermont Summer Festival. “The nice thing for the owners is the horse is paying his way, plus he’s paying the way for their other horses as well.”
After winning every class he entered with Armageddon during week three, Torano, 51, also piloted the gelding to the top of the $5,000 1.40m Open Jumper competition this week on Wednesday, August 2.
“He is a very competitive horse,” said Torano of Armageddon, who was previously campaigned by Venezuelan rider Alvaro Lozada. “When I got him, I didn’t think he was going to be a fast horse because he’s a big, slower type, but he has learned to go fast. I am going very fast on my other horses, but I keep winning with Armageddon. That says a lot; he’s very fast, very careful, and what a dynamite few weeks he has had.
“Luckily all my horses are going well,” continued Torano, who competes at the Vermont Summer Festival each summer with his own JET Show Stables. “I don’t know what is going on, but they are all on a roll, and we are having a great summer. I am going to enjoy this ride while I’m on it.”
In addition to his share of the prize money and a commemorative scrim from Mona's Monograms, Torano was presented with a $1,000 gift card to the Brooks Brothers outlet store in Manchester, VT, by Brooks Brothers representatives, Mark Ruegger and Bridget Fennell.
“It is really great that Manchester Designer Outlets get behind the horse show and us as riders,” said Torano, who has now won three welcome stake classes this season. “Prize money is always nice, but these prizes are a nice added bonus every week.”
Jumper action in the Grand Prix Ring continues with the $30,000 Manchester & the Mountains Grand Prix, presented by Purina Horse Feed, on Saturday, August 5.
For over 20 years, the Vermont Summer Festival has attracted exhibitors and their families to the Manchester region in southern Vermont for great competition in an ideal summer setting. Offering more than $750,000 in prize money over the course of its six-week run, the Vermont Summer Festival is New England’s largest hunter/jumper competition as well as the state’s richest sporting event based on purse. Outside the show ring, exhibitors are immersed in the charm of Vermont's shopping, dining, and outdoor activities.
Competition at the 2017 Vermont Summer Festival runs weekly from Wednesday through Sunday, beginning each day at 8 a.m. Admission is $6 for adults and $3 for children from Wednesday through Friday. On Saturday and Sunday, admission is $9 for adults and $5 for children with 100% of all gate proceeds benefiting the Manchester Community Library, Meals on Wheels of Bennington County, and the Rotary Club of Manchester.
For more information on the Vermont Summer Festival, please e-mail or visit www.vt-summerfestival.com.
$10,000 Brooks Brothers Welcome Stake, Presented by Manchester Designer Outlets
Thursday, August 3, 2017
Rider Hometown Horse Faults/Time
1. Jimmy Torano Wellington, FL Armageddon 0:0/38.82
2. Jimmy Torano Wellington, FL Umberto Ter Wilgen Z 0:0/39.67
3. Harold Chopping Canada Basje 0:0/41.85
4. Gabriel Rodrigues Honório Brazil Tabasco de la Nutria 0:4/42.62
5. Amanda Strain Deep River, CT Casino Royale 0:withdrew
6. Sam Pegg Canada Shaia de Macheco 4
7. Sam Pegg Canada Caroquados T 4
8. Jimmy Torano Wellington, FL Dutch Lady 4