Wayne, IL - June 15, 2016 – Showplace Productions Spring Spectacular kicked off Week II with familiar faces and some new competitors at Lamplight Equestrian Center. Highly-respected international course designer Anderson Lima built the tracks in the Grand Prix Arena including the featured $2,500 Open Jumper 1.30m, sponsored by Equis and the $2,500 Open Jumper 1.40m, sponsored by Nutrena. In the Main Hunter ring the professional hunter divisions got underway.
Shannon Hicks claimed the two top spots in the $2,500 Open Jumper 1.30m, sponsored by Equis out of 53 horse and rider combinations. With Cricket, owned by Tory Van Uithoven, she claimed first place honors and with Hailey Livingston’s NTEC Gold Rush she earned the red ribbon. Later in the day Van Uithoven and Cricket won the $1,000 Low Amateur Owner Jumpers.
“I have several grand prix horses but none of them came, so that class was the only class I get to show in all week,” said Hicks who hails from Wentzville, Missouri. “We bought Cricket from Karina Busch as a 5-year-old. He’s 8 now. He’s just an amazing horse.”
Cricket, a dark bay Hanoverian gelding (Contendro–Colonia) lives at home with Van Uithoven. Hicks says that she does all the work with the talented jumper except when she competes. Hicks gives her the credit for bringing him along. But, according to Hicks, Cricket is a bit of a character. She plans to give Van Uithoven the nod to move up to the High Amateur Jumpers Thursday because he performed so well
“Cricket is like the old cartoons of the giant elephant that is afraid of a mouse,” Hicks said. “He is the biggest weenie. He is goofy. But he is so good when he does his job it’s fine.”
Hicks said she loved the course. She shared that she was just hoping to get double clean rounds and be reasonably fast.
“I was thrilled that he was that fast,” she said. “He can be a little spooky at first but he is a super star.”
Hicks and her clients show all winter in St. Louis and Gulfport. She plans to compete during in the $25,000 USHJA Hunter Derby during Week III.
“I have never been to Spring Spectacular before,” she said. “I love it. I’d come back next year and being more.”
Liz Atkins and Niro 8 (Nerv–Aurelia), owned by Benchmark Stables LLC, were the victors in the $2,500 Open Jumper 1.40m, sponsored by Nutrena.
“Niro 8 is one of my upper level horses,” Atkins said of the striking stallion. “He had some time off and we’re just getting him back to the upper levels.”
Atkins is looking forward to having all her clients at the show for the next two weeks.
“We get to ride with a great course designer this week, Anderson Lima,” she said “This is our home horse show and everyone knows the ring. We should get great results and it should be a great week.”
Showplace Productions Spring Spectacular resumes bright and early Thursday, June 16, featuring the $20,000 Welcome Stake and the continuation of the professional hunter divisions.
Click here for the live stream of Showplace Productions Spring Spectacular by Star Creek Video.
$2,500 Open Jumper 1.30m, sponsored by Equis
$2,500 Open Jumper 1.40m, sponsored by Nutrena
$1,000 Low Junior Jumper
$1,500 High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers