Chapot grabs grand prix

LAKE PLACID – Laura Chapot of Neshanic Station, New Jersey, and Quointreau Un Prince won the $100,000 Woodlea Farms Adirondack Grand Prix Saturday to culminate the inaugural Adirondack Horse Show.

“I think it’s incredible,” said Chapot, who earned $30,000 with the victory. “Any win, any time is fantastic, but a win up here at Lake Placid in the biggest class of the three show series is just unbelievable. My horses just improved each week and just jumped better and better and to have it culminate in this is really fantastic.”

The win capped off an incredible three weeks for Chapot, who has come to Lake Placid every year of her life. Her parents, Frank and Mary Chapot, were U.S. Olympians and competed here.

“I won two classes a day, which is truly unbelievable,” Chapot said. “I don’t think I will ever, ever have another series like this. I mean, to say I won as many classes as I did, is amazing. That just doesn’t happen, so I mean, it’s been like a dream, a fabulous three weeks.”

The grand prix win was Chapot’s third in Lake Placid, following wins on Aiko in 1996 and Little Big Man in 2004.

Chapot was one of four entries from the starting field of 19 to reach the jump-off by riding without penalty over the 16-jump, first-round course designed by Pierre Jolicoeur.

Julie Welles went first over the eight-jump, jump-off course and set the mark to beat with a clean round in 39.723 seconds on Ramses Du Lavillon, owned by Missy Clark. Two rides later, Chapot dropped Welles to second place when she rode her 10-year-old, Selle Francais gelding which she owns with McLain Ward to a clean ride in a blazing 36.986 seconds.

Kelsey Thatcher followed with a four-fault ride in 37.385 seconds on Athena to take third place with fourth place going to Paul O’Shea who finished the jump-off with eight faults in 37.128 seconds on Primo De Revel.

“With the fast horses we had in the jump-off, I felt that I had to go all out,” Chapot said. “I thought I lost a little time early so I tried to pick it up and go as fast as I could over the rest of the course.”

In a special presentation prior to the grand prix, Dennis Sisco was honored with the Lora Schultz Award, given for outstanding performance in the hunter ring combined with excellence in turnout and sportsmanship. The award was established in memory of longtime Lake Placid Horse Show competitor and supporter Lora Schultz.

The inaugural Adirondack Horse Show concluded three consecutive weeks of horse shows at the North Elba Show Grounds in Lake Placid. The event has been two weeks long in the past. The three-week horse show series hosts all levels of competition, from those just beginning their riding careers on ponies all the way up to Olympic veterans and grand prix competitors, vying for over $750,000 in prize money.

Other feature class winners on the final day of Lake Placid’s three weeks of horse shows included:

-Victoria Colvin in the Kathy Scholl Equitation Classic presented by Kate Levy & Family

-Brianne Link on E Bay in the $10,000 Whiteface Mountain Junior Jumper Classic

-Catherine Tyree on Wetter in the $10,000 FarmVet Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic

-Victoria Birdsall on Hey Jude in the Golden Arrow Lakeside Resort Adult Jumper Classic

-Madison Charlton on Petit Flipper in the $3,000 Price Chopper Children’s Jumper Classic

-Kenzie Snyder on Waterloo in the Low Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic

-Sima Moegello on Quandorette Z in the Low Junior Jumper Classic

-Jimmy Torano on Just Sayin in the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby