G&C Farm Celebrates Great CSIO Week at 2011 FTI Winter Equestrian Festival
Pablo Barrios and G&C Quivola Win $35,000 Hermès Puissance
Wellington, FL – March 10, 2011 – G&C Farm celebrated a very successful CSIO week as the title sponsor on March 2-6 at the 2011 FTI Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF). They have had top placings in the past five weeks of competition, including the top two places in the $35,000 Hermès Puissance. G&C Farm is based in Wellington, FL, and owned by Gustavo and Carolina Mirabal of Venezuela. Barrios, who competes for Venezuela, is also based in Wellington.
Gustavo Mirabal said, “We were extremely pleased with the CSIO week at the FTI WEF. We are proud to sponsor such an exciting week of competition. The FEI Nations Cup was a fantastic class, as was the grand prix on Sunday. It was especially amazing that G&C horses placed first and second in the Hermès Puissance!”
G&C Farm was the title sponsor of week 8 of the FTI WEF, the CSIO week, and the presenting sponsor of the $75,000 FEI Nations Cup on Friday, March 4. Barrios, who is currently ranked number 25 in the FEI ROLEX world rankings, was the anchor of the Venezuelan team in the Nations Cup.
In the $35,000 Hermès Puissance, Pablo Barrios was the winner after he cleared the 7’3” puissance wall with G&C Quivola, owned by Gustavo Mirabal.
Barrios returned for a third jump-off in the puissance along with fellow Venezuelan, Gustavo Arroyo, who rode G&C Tropigold for G&C Farm. The wall was raised to seven feet (2.15m), and Barrios went first with G&C Quivola. They cantered slowly down to the wall and the big chestnut powered off the ground to clear the jump. Arroyo and G&C Tropigold followed suit, and the class went a fourth and final jump-off.
Course designer Steve Stephens and his crew raised the puissance wall to an impressive 7’3” (2.21m). As Barrios cantered by, only his head was visible on the other side of the wall. Once again, they showed the crowd how a puissance is done when they cleared it. Arroyo and G&C Tropigold gave it a great effort and cleared with the front end, but the horse’s hind end just caught the top of the wall. The blocks fell and they finished in second place.
Barrios said, “Quivola is a very scopey horse that is going to be seven, which is quite the young horse, but you can feel the scope when you ride him. He began to jump better and better every round. I didn’t expect to win because I didn’t know exactly how the horse would react to a big wall like that and at night. But he just continued to improve.”
G&C Farm Team Wins FTI Great Charity Challenge presented by Fidelity Investments®
The G&C Farm team won the second annual FTI Great Charity Challenge presented by Fidelity Investments® where over a million dollars was raised in an exciting Pro-Am show jumping event on February 19. A signature event of the 12 week FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival, the event featured 32 teams of three riders ranging in age from 11 to 70 where amateurs competed side by side with their professional heroes. Each team was randomly assigned to a charity to compete for $1,020,000 in prize money for the charities.
G&C Farm was the winning team and they competed for Wheels for Kids. They set a blazing fast time of 91.376 seconds for victory. The riders were Olympian Pablo Barrios, 18-year-old Luis Fernando Larrazabal, and 14-year-old Emmanuel Andrade. All three riders are from Venezuela and competed for team sponsors, Gustavo and Carolina Mirabal of G&C Farm. The Mirabals, Barrios, and Larrazabal live in Wellington, FL for the winter.
Andrade set the pace for the winning team around the first part of the relay course. “He was flying!” Barrios said. “I think they really enjoyed competing on a team like this.”
All three riders felt that competing for charity was a unique experience and one that they would want to do again. “It is unbelievable to get the money for the charity. It is a great idea and it is a great way to help the kids with all of those donations. $1,020,000 is amazing, and it is really special for us to be a part of this. It feels great to help in some way,” Barrios said.
Team sponsor Gustavo Mirabal said, “This was one of the classes that we really wanted to win because it is something special. It is a great feeling to know that we can help so many charitable organizations in one night and, we are always going to support these classes.”
The winning team received the largest share of the prize money for their randomly assigned charity, Wheels for Kids. Denise Jungbert, the founder of Wheels for Kids, was extremely excited to be able to provide wheelchairs for children with permanent physical disabilities on her waiting list with the money won in the event.
Barrios Places at the Top at FTI WEF
Barrios and G&C Quick Star 11, who won the grand prix in week 3, were second in the $31,000 WEF Challenge Cup Round 5 Grand Prix in week 5, and they went on to repeat that feat in week 8. They went on to place a solid third in the $150,000 FEI World Cup Qualifier Grand Prix, presented by Spy Coast Farm. This placing helped them earn points toward qualifying for the 2011 FEI World Cup Finals in Leipzig, Germany, in April.
During week 4, Barrios and G&C Flash were second in the Suncast 1.50m Championship Jumper Series Classic. Also in week 5, G&C Con Air and Barrios won the $6,000 Spy Coast Farm 1.40m Jumpers over 85 other entries. G&C In Color placed fourth in the $8,000 G&C Farm 1.45m Jumpers.
Week 6 saw Barrios and G&C Sinatra place third in the $50,000 G&C Farm Palm Beach Jumping Derby.
Barrios and G&C Sinatra, a 12-year-old KWPN gelding by Epilot x Libero H, won the $175,000 Nexen Cup Derby at Spruce Meadows last year and he was very pleased with his third place finish today. “Sinatra loves this type of class with natural obstacles. He’s not the fastest horse in the world, but I did some pretty tight turns,” Barrios said. He continued, “He definitely has a lot of energy and he’s a big horse, but I can ride him without spurs and no whip. He’s always ready to go. Every year is better and better.”
G&C Sinatra also finished eighth in the $31,000 WEF Challenge Cup Round 6. G&C Flash was second in the 1.45m Jumpers and ninth in the 1.40m Jumpers. Simply the Best placed fifth in the young jumpers.
In week 7, Barrios and Costa placed second in the $25,000 Suncast 1.50m Classic and G&C Flash was 10th. G&C Sinatra was fifth in the $31,000 G&C Farm 1.45m class, which counted toward FEI ROLEX world ranking points. Costa was third in the $8,000 G&C Farm 1.45m Jumpers. Maria Emilia Mirabal was seventh and ninth in the Children’s Modified Jumpers with Hibiscus.
Other week 8 results include: G&C La Gran was ninth in the $31,000 G&C Farm 1.45m Jumper class, G&C Quick Star was 12th in the $150,000 Wellington Equestrian Realty Grand Prix, CSIO 4*, and G&C Con Air was 11th in the $8,000 G&C Farm 1.45m Jumper class.
G&C Farm will continue showing during week 9 of the 2011 FTI Winter Equestrian Festival.
G&C Farm brings exceptional horses and top Venezuelan jumper riders to the highest levels of competition. Their state-of-the-art, full-service facility is located in Wellington, FL.
The vision of G&C Farm is to improve the instruction and training of their top jumper riders and horses in order to seek a place on the Venezuelan team for all high level tournaments and top competitions, including the World Equestrian Games and Olympic Games. G&C Farm sponsors top grand prix rider Pablo Barrios of Venezuela, as well as other up and coming riders. The technical advisor at G&C Farm is Olympic Games course designer Leopoldo Palacios.