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Wordley Martin Equestrian Brings Home Top Prizes from Tryon!

Sharn and the Sky Group’s Casper Photo credit Sportfot/Chronicle of the Horse

It’s been a fantastic couple of months in Tryon for the entire crew who train out of Wordley Martin Equestrian.  Sharn, his fiancee Lauren Balcolm, and student Nicole Loochtan have been on a hot streak at the TIEC in the past week,  taking top prizes in nearly all of their classes.  Sharn has shown in every FEI class over the past several months, and the following is the highlights from their successes in North Carolina, courtesy of the TIEC/Chronicle of the Horse press releases!

Let’s start with Sharn and Casper’s performance throughout the summer season.  Casper (owned by the Sky Group) remains one of Sharn’s top contenders, has consistently placed in the top of the rankings at each show.  Sharn and the 2006 Oldenburg gelding (Contender x Baloubet du Rouet) has racked up the following podium appearances throughout the TIEC season since the beginning of June:

3rd – $72,000 Horseware Ireland Welcome Stake CSI 4*
2nd – $72,000 Ingles Grand Prix CSI 2* on 6/29
2nd – $36,000 Horseware Ireland Welcome Stake CSI 3*
3rd – $134,000 Adequan® CSI 3*





Another one of Sharn’s great performers is Gatsby, a 2011 Irish Sport Horse stallion by Simbax x Cruise, who is starting to amass his own impressive FEI resume with Sharn and his mother as the owners.  As this talented young stallion continues to build his resume, Sharn is also considering standing him at stud in Kentucky.

Here are the top highlights from Gatsby’s FEI appearances at TIEC since May:

2nd – $72,000 CaptiveOne Advisors Grand Prix CSI 3* on 5/25
2nd – $36,000 Sunday Classic CSI 4* on 6/9
3rd – $36,000 Sunday Classic CSI 3*  on 7/7
1st – $72,000 Nutrena® Grand Prix CSI 2* on 7/13

Sharn and Gatsby winning the $72,000 Nutrena® Grand Prix CSI 2* Photo credit Sportfot/Chronicle of the Horse

Sharn also topped the summer circuit at Tryon with his second FEI Win in $36,000 Sunday Classic CSI 2* riding Rye Val de Mai, a 2005 Selle Francais stallion (Helios de La Cour II x Type D’Elle) that he’s owned for about three years now.  This was also a fantastic win for the team as Sharn’s right hand man, Luis, received the groom’s award for the day.  Thanks for all your hard work Luis!

Sharn, Rye Val de Mai and Luis for the win! Photo credit Sportfot/ CHRON

USHJA Zone 3 & 4 Jumper Team and Platinum Championships

Let’s not forget the girls!!  Both Lauren and Nicole took place in a fantastic team championship this past week in Tryon.  Here is an excerpt from our favorite TIEC Press release!

Lauren Balcomb and Verdini D’Houtveld Z ©Sportfot/CHRON

Mill Spring, NC – July 15, 2019 – The USHJA Zone 3 & 4 Jumper Team and Platinum Championships concluded Sunday with the Zone 3 & 4 Platinum Jumper 1.40-1.45m Individual Final, with Jumper Team Individual Finals taking place Saturday in Tryon Stadium at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC). The three-day Jumper Team Championships welcomed just shy of 100 competitors over four days, also hosting the inaugural USHJA Zone 3 & 4 Platinum Jumper Championship. 

Lauren Balcomb and Verdini D’Houtveld Z Zip to Win Zone 3 & 4 Platinum Jumper 1.40-1.45m Individual Final 
After three rounds of competition, Lauren Balcomb (Citra, FL) aboard her own Verdini D’Houtveld Z were awarded champion honors in the Zone 3 & 4 Individual Platinum Jumper 1.40-1.45m Individual Final. Jesse Smith (Wellington, FL) piloted her own Charles Pinckney Windsor Z to a second place finish, while Katlynn Butler (Mechanicsville, VA) completed the podium in third with her own MTM Catoki’s Clever. 

“Dini jumped super in yesterday’s 1.40m speed round coming 1st and then 2nd in the Zone Competition. He then jumped two rounds today with 1 rail in the 1st round and clear in the second round to bring home Team Gold for Zone 4 in the Platinum 1.40/1.45m section!!”

Let’s also send congrats out to amateur rider and client Nicole Loochtan for her exceptional early performance aboard Caiman des Sequoias in the team competition for Bronze and Famoso D’Ive Z’s double clear for 3rd in the $25,000 Grand Prix and a win in 1.4om Jr/AO class!

Lauren Balcomb (center stage) for Team Gold and Nicole Loochtan (far left) for Team Bronze!