By Sara Cavanagh
Victoria Colvin, who had dominated Junior Weekend, and Kelley Farmer, who had dominated the hunter divisions on Monday through Wednesday, on Sunday dominated the $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby at the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair.
Colvin, 15 of Loxahatchee, Fla., won the two round Derby on Dr. Betsee Parker’s Inclusive, winning the first round with a score of 187 and the second round with a 189.5 for a total of 376.5
Farmer was second on Commentary with a score of 373, third on Skorekeeper with a score of 364.5 and fifth on Mythical with 361.
Hope Glynn on SVS Caremunde Z was fourth, also with a score of 361, but she won the tie breaker.
The first round of 29 horses competed over a regular course of hunter fences, with options of jumping bigger fences for added points, then the top 12 returned for a second round over a handy hunter course.
“My plan in the handy was to put in a nice, smooth round, just hoping to get in the top three,” said Colvin. “I liked the courses. The options were like mirror images.
“Inclusive is a very sweet horse,” said Colvin. “He’s the easiest horse to get prepared. I’ve been riding him for two years. He was a little green when I got him. He’s easier now. He’s a very laid back horse.”
“He has a very powerful jump over an oxer,” said Colvin. “It’s hard to stay on.”
“I’ve never done a Derby at Devon before,” said Colvin. “It’s amazing to win anything at Devon. It’s such a prestigious show.”
Commentary had been an event horse ridden by Marilyn Little, and Farmer said she heard about the mare through a friend.
“She had just finished a two star event the day before I tried her,” said Farmer, who only got the mare a few weeks ago. “She hasn’t had much time to learn to be a hunter. I knew I was throwing a lot at her, but if they jump those things (event fences), you know they’re going to be brave.”
“In the first round, she over-jumped a shade,” said Farmer. “Then in the second round she realized she wasn’t eventing.”
“I was just hoping that she’d get in the top 12 and qualify for the Derby Finals,” said Farmer.