Plantation Field is back with historic riders in the winner’s circle | Main edition

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UNIONVILLE, Pennsylvania. – Plantation Field International has come back to life after its near-death experience on a sunny weekend in mid-September. The 4-star division was won, and rightly so, by one of its original supporters, Phillip Dutton of West Grove, Pa., And Quasi Cool.

With Kentucky rider Alexandra Knowles threatening to dominate the winner’s circle as the leader overnight, Dutton and Quasi Cool entered the cross-country race on Sunday with just 3.2 time faults on the hilly terrain. and the difficult obstacle course.

It was the first race for the 9-year-old Holsteiner imported gelding from Caroline Moran at 4-star level and Dutton, fresh out of competing for the United States at the Tokyo Olympics, wanted to do the cross county “as fast as possible without scare him. – and he handled it pretty well.

Only one pair of competitors completed the challenging cross-country course, designed by Derek diGrazia, with no jumps or no time lapse. These were Fylicia Barr and her 13-year-old American Warmblood mare, Galloway Sunrise, whose cross-country performance took them from 7th to 3rd place.

The pair have a colorful and inspiring story.

At the age of 13, Barr’s harassment led his mother to buy Galloway Sunrise when he was just 2 years old barely touched online through Craigslist for $ 500. Since then, the duo have trained and worked together to become the best competitors at the highest level of eventing. Barr and “Sunny,” as the mare in the barn is known, plan to visit next door to the upcoming Maryland 5 Star inaugural at Fair Hill, October 14-17.

Second after Dutton and Quasi Cool, were popular local runner Bruce Davidson Jr., who grew up just across the hill from Plantation Field, and Errol Gobey.

Knowles and Ms Poppins, who led the field after Saturday’s show jumping, jumped flawlessly but had 7.2 time faults that put them down to 4th place. After Saturday’s jump stage, Knowles was also in 3rd place with Morswood and 6th place with Business Class. Knowles and Morswood fell to 5th place after the cross. She and the business class did not finish the cross.

Speaking at a press briefing after the cross country and awards show, Dutton said he was happy to see Plantation Field back on track. “It’s a very unique site and it would be terrible for our sport to lose it. It’s such a great viewing spot and has its own feel and style, and it’s great for our local community. . . [and] it’s gratifying to see where he is today.

The Plantation Field name controversy exploded in the summer of last year after a popular online event newsletter challenged the name’s sensitivity during an era of heightened racial tension in the United States. United. But in this case, the field was named after a tree plantation by the Quakers in the area whose ancestors helped run the underground railroad that helped slaves escape from the South.

Deeply hurt by the controversy, landowner Cuyler Walked rescinded the event’s organizers’ lease, essentially condemning its existence as one of the leading 3- and 4-star events on the East Coast.

But in the year that followed, calm negotiations apparently led to a deal that saved the event.

“We have resolved all issues with the governing bodies and expect this Plantation Field event to continue here for many years to come,” Walker said at this year’s Plantation Field International highlight.

A special prize was awarded to Megan O’Donohue and Palm Crescent, as the best off-piste thoroughbred. They ranked 18th out of 40 graduates in the 4-star division.

And George Strawbridge, a well-known regional landowner and racing stable owner and longtime rider, was honored at a special luncheon as the Plantation Field International Equestrian Legends of Unionville Honoree.


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