Mackenzie Drazan Wins Show Jumping Hall of Fame Jumper Classic Series West Coast Final
Credit: McCool Photos
Mackenzie Drazan, of Woodside, CA, took center stage after winning the $10,000 Show Jumping Hall of Fame (SJHF) Jumper Classic West Coast Final at the Las Vegas National Horse Show. This marks the fourth year that the SJHF Jumper Classic Series has held a West Coast Championship Final in addition to its traditional Final at the National Horse Show in Lexington, Kentucky. The Las Vegas National Horse Show took place November 10-15 at the South Point Arena & Equestrian Center in Las Vegas and featured some of the world’s top riders and horses.
The competition was fierce as only three riders out of the 30 starters made it through to the jump-off. Riding Waliba VDL, a 12-year-old bay Dutch Warmblood mare, Drazan produced a beautiful clear round and set an unbeatable pace, crossing the timers in 35.863 seconds—nearly three seconds ahead of second placed Susan Griffis of Larkspur, CO, and Cwestoreto who stopped the clock in 38.653 seconds. Allyssa Hecht, of Del Mar, CA, put in a valiant effort aboard Calvatos Z, but the pair incurred four faults before completing their round in 41.789 seconds. “It was a very tough class and it was quite technical,” said Drazan about her win on the course designed by Olaf Petersen Jr. of Germany. The first round included 12 fences with 15 jumping efforts, followed by the jump-off which included eight jumping efforts against the clock. “I think I managed to shave off some time in the jump-off by cutting inside another jump going from the second to third fence. It was so tight that one of the decorative flowers actually hit me in the face!” she said with a laugh.
Following the Championship Final, the Series’ West Coast season winners were honored in an awards presentation ceremony with Show Jumping Hall of Fame Executive Director Marty Bauman and Olympic Gold Medalist Will Simpson, a member of the Hall of Fame’s Board of Directors. Jami Jensen of Larkspur, CO, took first place in the Amateur-Owner standings with her mount Al Capone with a total of 414 points, while Junior rider Rebecca Reyes of Saratoga, CA, took first place in the Junior Division standings aboard Let’s Dance with 270 points. Reyes’s trainer John Charlebois graciously accepted her award on her behalf.
The Show Jumping Hall of Fame organizes the Show Jumping Hall of Fame Jumper Classic Series, designed to give amateur-owner and junior riders the opportunity to compete at higher levels and serves to promote the sport of show jumping. Any horse show offering a class that meets all the criteria set forth in the Show Jumping Hall of Fame Jumper Classic Series specifications and has prize money of at least $1,000 is eligible to be part of the Series.
The Show Jumping Hall of Fame Jumper Classic Series hosts a junior and amateur-owner division in two conferences – east and west. Series standings are used to determine which junior and amateur-owner horse and rider combinations are eligible to compete in the National Horse Show and the Las Vegas National Horse Show.