Ph. Liz Crawley Photography
Venezuela’s Angel Karolyi and the 14-year-old Dutch gelding Indiana 127 (Indoctro X Voltaire) made the most out of the last day of competition at the Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC), dominating the $35,000 1.50m Suncast Classic CSI 4* in the George H. Morris Arena to close out the fourth and final week of the Tryon Summer Series. Karolyi and Indiana 127 took center stage as the last pair in the jump-off, securing a faultless round and a winning time of 36.805 seconds. Earning 2nd place was USA’s Margie Engle and her ride the 11-year-old KWPN mare Abunola (Numero Uno X Voltaire), who crossed the timers in 37.129 seconds, while 3rd place honors were awarded to Ireland’s David Blake and the 10-year-old KWPN gelding Binkie (Larino X Hors La Loi II) who clinched their third place finish with a time of 40.662 seconds.
The pair was one of four combinations to advance to the jump-off round and the duo was faced with three fast competitors in Engle, Blake, and Parot. Karolyi and Indiana 127 have been teamed together for four years and have earned multiple wins since the beginning of their partnership.
“We won the first major class I competed in with Indiana 127. We then went on to have a very successful 2014 season together, which included wins at Spruce Meadows, as well as a campaign in Europe,” he explained. “I felt that after all of the continued success he had earned himself a well deserved break.”
Karolyi continued to narrate the story of Indiana 127, adding, “I kept him in a program during this past WEF to stay fit and then he proved to me he was ready to move up to the international level and contest FEI classes. I had a plan for this week, which included finishing up with this class and it worked out well for us.”
Karolyi went on to speak of the first round track and jump-off designed by Mexico’s Catsy Cruz, which saw four combinations move forward to a competitive test of the short course.
“The first round walked pretty straight forward. In the jump-off, I walked fences one to two and there were eight steps there, but I decided to do nine considering the turn we had to tackle on the landing side,” detailed Karolyi. “I have to always go a little wide on a rollback back to an oxer to give him more room and momentum to clear the back rail.”
“I galloped everywhere I could, and honestly, I got a bit lucky. Going into the last line I even lost my left stirrup, and hoped for the best. The last two days I thought I was a little bit unlucky with him, but today my luck turned around,” he smiled.
Karolyi and his team are thrilled for the opportunity to travel to The Colorado Horse Park (CHP) for the Adequan/FEI North American Junior Young Rider Championships presented by Gotham North (NAJYRC) this coming week, but are set with plans to return to TIEC for the 2016 Tryon Fall Series to begin later this season.
“I am very excited to go to The Colorado Horse Park and see how it has been upgraded this past year. I would love to compete there in the future,” commented Karolyi. “At the same time, I am very excited about returning to TIEC in the fall. I am beginning to put a string of horses together that are well suited for these high level classes and it really comes down to hard work.”
Karolyi made mention of the emotional importance of the win today for him personally, as it was his first international victory since his close friend and Venezuelan teammate Andres Rodriguez passed away.
“My friends and family here have been celebrating him this week and all I can say is I hope he heard our anthem up there and was smiling.”
See full results here.