Each week on #HallOfFameThursday, Horse Network recognizes members of the Show Jumping Hall of Fame with an inductee’s plaque, historical photos and, on the first Thursday of every month, an historic article on a major win by a Show Jumping Hall of Famer. This week, we pay tribute to one of the great wins by Anne Kursinski, Show Jumping Hall of Fame class of 2016, with an article published in the Lake Placid Horse Show program in 1999 recounting her victory in the $450,000 Pulsar Crown Grand Prix at Monterrey, Mexico.

The USET returned from one of the world’s major show jumping events, CSI-A Monterrey, Mexico, with 38 top-ten performances in 14 classes last October [1998]. The USET emerged victorious in half of those classes and also claimed 6 second place finishes during the week.

Highlighting the week was the impressive win by Lake Placid Horse Show regular Anne Kursinski of Flemington, NJ on The Eros Group’s Eros in the $450,000 Pulsar Crown Grand Prix. Kursinski became the first American and first woman rider to win the Pulsar Grand Prix. Her winning purse of $140,000 helped USET riders to return with $370,600 of the one million dollars offered in prize money at Monterrey, one of the world’s richest horse

“I’m very honored to be the first woman to win a Pulsar event,” Kursinski said, “but more importantly, I’m so happy for the Team and for Eros. He really is a world-class horse, and today he made it seem effortless just like all great horses do.”

Throughout the week at Monterrey, Kursinski went up against an Olympic ­caliber international field, including such riders as Germany’s Olympic Gold Medalists Ludger Beerbaum and Franke Sloothaak and reigning World Champion Rodrigo Pessoa of Brazil and such horses as Calvaro V who was named Best Horse at the 1998 World Equestrian Games. In fact, 10 of the top 12 European riders on the FEI/BCM World Ranking List competed in the Grand Prix. Kursinski was the only rider able to perform three clean rounds in the Pulsar Crown Grand Prix. In the jump-off, she beat British Olympic veteran Geoff Billington and Austria’s Hugo Simon who was on his two-time World Cup Champion E.T. FRH.

Nona Garson of Lebanon, NJ placed 4th on Lero Piana Rhythmical, owned by Garson and the Kamine family. Leslie Howard of Westport, CT was 6th on Clover Leaf owned by Jane Forbes Clark and Rich Fellers of Wilsonville, OR finished 8th on Stealth Sprenger owned by Harry Chapman and Molly Chapman. The USET also placed twelfth, seventeenth, eighteenth and twentieth in the Grand Prix.

In addition to Kursinski’s win in the Grand Prix, she won the $23,000 Visa Goodwill Trophy on the Group lndeed’s Indeed and placed second in the $90,000 Bohemia Challenge on Eros.

Another U.S. rider able to claim first prize in two classes was Todd Minikus of Lake Forest, IL. Minikus won the $70,000 Zangersheid Clasico on his Oh Star by .8 seconds in the jump-off. Patton and Allan E. Shore’s Innocence finished the Clasico in sixth. Minikus also led the USET to three top-five finishes in the El Universal Welcome Stake claiming the win on Amy Lefferdin’s What Nu. Beezie Patton of Cazenovia, NY and Innocence finished in second and Fellers finished in fifth on Harry H. Chapman’s McDougle.

Leslie Howard just missed adding her name to the list of USET riders with two wins at Monterrey when she placed second in the lusacel $100,000 Derby on Jane F. Clark’s Ulane Du Plessis. She did post the fastest time of the seven in the jump-off on Clover Leaf to win the $30,000 America Challenge. Alison Firestone of Upperville, VA and her Gusti P finished third. Fellers won the $35,000 America Masters on Harry H. Chapman’s Amos when he proved to be the fastest, by more than two seconds, of four double clean rounds. Of the nine riders to make it into the jump-off, five were from the USET. Hap Hansen of Encinitas, CA finished in second on Linda Smith’s Roxett 7, Richard Spooner of Glendale, CA finished fifth on Delight Hanover’s Prestige, Garson rode Eddy Sepul’s Capital S to finish eighth and Joe Fargis of Southampton, NY finished 9th on Mary B. Schwab’s Lancelot Z.

The USET also achieved three top-five places in the $35,000 America Friendship Trophy class. This time- , first, second and third place finishes were led by Lynne C. Little of Frederick, MD. She and Raylyn Farm’s Pialotta posted the only double clean round to win. Firestone and Mr. and Mrs. Bertram R. Firestone’s Amica De La Barre were the fastest of the four fault performances and finished second; Eric Hasbrouck of Bedford, NY finished third on Trelawny Farm’s Freestyle; and Spooner was seventh on the Half Moon Bay Investment Group’s Casino.

Other top USET performances included a second place finish by Garson and Capital S in the $20,000 America Cup. Less than two seconds behind Garson, Hansen finished this speed class in tenth place on Jon A. Shirley’s Pikadero. Patton and Innocence also claimed a third­place finish in the $30,000 Ford International Trophy speed class. Minikus and Oh Star followed Patton in fifth.

Summing up the USET’s success at Monterrey, Kursinski said, “For those of us who were members of the Rome team, this week brought us great satisfaction. I think we proved the quality of our team!”

Written by Marty Bauman and published in the Lake Placid Horse Show program in 1999. Feature image by Karl Leck.

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