The Illinois-based professional wins the $10,000 Positive Step Farm Open Jumper Welcome Prix at Flintfields Horse Park.
Lisa Goldman took a chance. When she came around the corner to the last line in the jump-off of the $10,000 Positive Step Open Jumper Welcome Prix, she had a choice to make: pull or kick.
Her split-second decision to kick made all the difference. She and Centurion B earned their second consecutive blue ribbon at Horse Shows by the Bay Series IV, by a margin of just .06 seconds.
Charles Jacobs, of Boston, MA, who challenged Goldman eight horses later aboard Flaming Star, fell just short and took the red ribbon, while Nick Novak and Rendezvous 22 claimed third.
“I had a flyer,” said Goldman laughing. “It was in the jump-off at the end of the course. His stride was big, and I knew I was fast, so I tried to be careful to the last line. I saw it big and went for it. He doesn’t care, and he took it for me. He’ll never say no.”
Today’s featured class in the Grand Prix Ring, designed by J.P. Godard, tested a field of 19 riders. Seven qualified for the jump-off, and all seven jumped clear, so speed became the sole determining factor.
“The first round course was great,” said Goldman. “It started off with a nice ramped oxer that got you in, and the course built as it went.
“I love his courses,” continued Goldman. “He sets you up well and makes you think about your jump-offs, and there are always a lot of options. There was one inside turn we decided not to do in the jump-off. Lillie [Ross] did it, but we thought you would have to slow down too much to do the turn and that it was faster to stay on the pace and go around.”
Goldman’s strategy worked perfectly, and Centurion B, her 11-year-old Belgian Warmblood (Rebel Z–Paloma G), had no difficulty keeping a quick pace and leaving out strides throughout the eight-effort course.
“What I think did it for me is that I did the five strides to the in-and-out, from fences 4 to 5AB, at the beginning, and only Charlie did that, too,” she said.
“I was worried about Charlie,” Goldman admitted. “We were one-two here last year, and I know he’s faster than anyone, and I know he wants to get it. We were only .06 apart, and that generally doesn’t go in my favor, so it was really exciting to have that close of a spread go in my favor today.”
Last year Goldman won the $10,000 Positive Step Farm Welcome Prix prior to her victory in the $30,000 D-Braider Cherry Capital Classic Grand Prix, so she hopes that her good fortune continues to follow a familiar path.
Goldman, 23, of Red Coat Farm in Hawthorn Woods, IL, said she’s feeling back to 100 percent after a serious illness sent her to the hospital and kept her away from the horse show most of Horse Shows by the Bay Series III. Her mother and trainer, Mary Goldman, held down the fort and kept their 15-horse contingent running smoothly.
“I must say thank you to my mom for nursing me back to health and still somehow training everyone that we have here,” she said. “I feel perfect, and the horse feels spectacular. He’s in it to win it, and if I don’t mess up we’ll be good on Saturday.”