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Jump-offs Determine Wins for Saad Vega and Ruziska in USHJA North American Show Jumping Individual Farewell Competitions

by US Equestrian Communications Department | Aug 4, 2018, 4:40 PM EST

North Salem, N.Y.– Several athletes concluded their 2018 Adequan®/FEI North American Youth Championships (NAYC) presented by Gotham North experience by competing in the USHJA North American Show Jumping Individual Farewell Competitions on Saturday, August 4. Mexico’s Camila Saad Vega and Doncella Granith Chief topped the children’s class while Zone 3’s Barbara Ruziska and Elonie earned the blue ribbon in the combined junior and young rider class.

USHJA North American Junior and Young Rider Show Jumping Individual Farewell Competition

Barbara Ruziska and Elonie (SEL Photography)

Three riders competed in the USHJA North American Junior and Young Rider Show Jumping Individual Farewell Competition: Canada’s Samantha Starratt, Guatemala’s Lukene Arenas Saravia, and Ruziska (21, Frederick, Md.). All three had one rail in the first round, which ensured a jump-off. With Starratt and Akolito, Tonia Anderson’s 10-year-old Westphalian gelding, jumping clear, Ruziska and Elonie, her nine-year-old KWPN mare, had to keep their turns tight to have a chance of winning.

“I knew she had a relatively fast time, and I knew I had to jump clear. [Elonie] is already a fast horse, so I just let her go,” said Ruziska, who finished with a time of 38.01 seconds. “The past couple of days were very competitive. Today, we were on our groove, and I knew what I had to do. It’s my last year as a young rider, and that’s why I came. I’m so appreciative to have Sandra [Ruiz] as my zone captain because without her I would not be here. Leaving with a blue ribbon feels good.”

Starratt and Akolito placed second with a time of 39.86 while Arenas Saravia and Icarus van de Kalevallei placed third with a time of 53.81 seconds.

USHJA North American Child Rider Show Jumping Individual Farewell Competition

Saad Vega and Doncella Granith Chief jumped double clear to win the USHJA North American Child Rider Show Jumping Farewell competition. With Guatemala’s Ana Cristina Rodriquez and Zoline, Juan Andres Rodriguez Silva's 14-year-old KWPN mare, as well as Mexico’s Jose Miguel Quintana Melgoza and Estilo LS la Silla, Club Hipico la's 11-year-old Studbook La Silla gelding, dropping a rail, Saad Vega had nothing to lose. She and the 10-year-old mare of unknown breeding owned by Juan Carlos Gomez Franco finished in 33.45 seconds.

Camila Saad Vega and Doncella Granith Chief  (SEL Photography)

“I am really proud of myself. Yesterday did not go well. My mare and I have been together a long time, and I love her, but yesterday was not our best course. However, today we improved, so I am really proud of her and that we can compete at this level and win this competition,” explained Saad Vega.

Guatemala’s Ana Sofia Rodriguez and Efrieda, Juan Andres Rodriguez's nine-year-old KWPN mare, jumped double clear to place second with a time of 36.90 seconds. Her twin sister Ana Cristiana Rodriguez placed third with four faults and a time of 35.02 seconds.

The NAYC will conclude on Sunday, August 5, with the USHJA North American Jumping Individual Championships beginning at 8:30 a.m. streamed live on theUSEF Network.

View the NAYC schedule and results.

Stay up to date on the Adequan®/FEI North American Youth Championships presented by Gotham North by following FEI NAYC on Facebookand Twitter. Use #FEINAYC.