He's said it once and is saying it again, Daniel Geitner of Aiken, SC wouldn't "trade places" with anyone. Especially this afternoon as he claimed the top three places of the $25,000 Spring Atlanta Grand Prix presented by EMO Insurance.He's said it once and is saying it again, Daniel Geitner of Aiken, SC wouldn't "trade places" with anyone. Especially this afternoon as he claimed the top three places of the $25,000 Spring Atlanta Grand Prix presented by EMO Insurance.
He’s said it once and is saying it again, Daniel Geitner of Aiken, SC wouldn’t "trade places" with anyone. Especially this afternoon as he claimed the top three places of the $25,000 Spring Atlanta Grand Prix presented by EMO Insurance.
Today’s victory marked the 4th prix win for the coming 9 year-old Argentine bred gelding Trading Places owned by Kyle Register and Daniel’s 18th career win. "He’s just a super horse." Geitner said of partner "Krimi" [his mom’s nickname for him at home]. "He’s really coming into his own."a very happy Kyle said of her boy.
Rob Gage’s 13-jump layout required a strong 16 efforts from the 24 horses competing this afternoon. "It was a nice track." Daniel first commented of the course, which covered the huge expanse of the former Olympic arena. There were sections that allowed 7-8 strides between obstacles. "The triple combination [8ABC] was definitely the tricky spot. A little long jumping in and then a very short 2 stride jumping out, but it was coming off the #7 [vertical] where you had 8 to 10 straight strides making it a long run so you had to keep rolling a little for the time allowed [90 seconds] and then organize them a little for the triple." Daniel confirmed the toughest part of round one was in fact this combination as half of the starters faulted. Daniel felt maybe if they’d had a shorter turn it would have rode easier, "but I’m sure that was part of his [Gage] plan-to not make it easy on us." he added with a chuckle. The other surprise element came at fence #3, a tall vertical made of natural planks, something most the horses had not encountered over these two weeks of competition. "They [the horses] all looked at them a little funny." said Daniel of the new fence.
Fortunately for Geitner none of the three mounts he piloted took issue with combinations or planks as he brought all home clear in the first round. Beginning with Miraj, owned by Sherry Cooke, in a time of 82.21; next was Trading Places with a time of 85.20, and finally the Mrs. Charles Bostwick entry Sympa going clear in 84.70. "It was a really nice track and if you made it through the triple combination you were probably ok for the rest of it." Daniel observed of round one. Only three others would challenge Geitner in the finale round. Two of which also hail from Aiken, SC, last week’s grand prix winner Michael Tokaruk with Lord Byron and this week’s Welcome Stake champ Angel Karolyi aboard the Abigail Walker owned James T Kirk.
Gage stuck to the endurance theme for his final 7 obstacle 8 effort round, starting off with those natural planks at #3 from there it was a short gallop to the oxer at #4 and then the snaking across the length of the arena began. "It was interesting," began Daniel, "a tight six [stride] up the first line..maybe a five..I just chose to go six to keep it organized. Probably for me the trickiest was up to fence #6 [oxer] because you’re jumping into the stands. After that it rode nice, just a little long into that 8AB [from the original triple]. My favorite was the gallop to the end Ð you could just take a shot and zip on down to the last one." And zip he did with clear times of 43.351 on Miraj, 42.972 with Trading Places, and 46.562 on Sympa respectively.
"They’re fabulous layouts!" Daniel started in reference to his experience with Rob Gage’s course work this week, "They’re more spread out and more single fences, which for riders is great. A little less technicality and more gallop, but I like to gallop anyway so it kinda suited me." he added, "A lot of the courses I came up to walk, but found there wasn’t a whole lot to do because the lines were 7 and 8 strides. When it gets up to that many you have so many things that can happen so that becomes part of the challenge."
The Atlanta Spring series has been a fruitful one for Geitner with more than his fair share of high placings and Championships from the hunter division to the jumper rings. This week he repeated the Championship in the Pre Green 3′ Hunters with Playoff owned by Libba Fisher and rising jumper star Gladiator owned by Kathleen Feeley took second place in the Welcome Stake. Kathleen had been expected to show Gladiator in the adult jumper division this weekend, however the arrival of a new addition to the family took precedence when her mare gave birth to a beautiful and healthy foal. "We’re all so happy for her." Daniel beamed. Heading home to Aiken this evening he plans to take a week off from showing to spend some quality time with wife Cathy and their children Wyatt and birthday girl Lilly, who just turned one. "I told the crew not to come back to work until at least Wednesday and to call first because we may take that day off too." Daniel said with a relaxed smile. Following a rest he’ll take on the competition at his home turf during the Aiken Spring events.
Official results for the Spring Atlanta Grand Prix were Daniel Geitner sweeping the top three positions aboard Trading Places clean in 42.972, second on Miraj with a clear 43.351, and third on Sympa going fault free in 46.562. Fourth place went to owner-rider Mauro Atzeri on Windgates Illusion and completing the top five was owner-rider Michael Tokaruk and Lord Byron with a time of 41.220 and 4 faults.
Classic Company will return to the Georgia International Horse Park June 18th through June 29th for the Atlanta Summer Classics featuring the 4th Annual Horses Helping Horses events to benefit Old Friends Equine Retirement Facility. Look for more prize money offerings, special classes, silent auction, and many more new surprises to be announced soon. For more information or results please visit www.classiccompany.com or call the Classic Company at 843-768-5503.