When Darragh Kenny (IRL) took over the ride on Volnay du Boisdeville, the horse already had a proven track record.
Purchased for and campaigned by Teddy Vlock, a client of Kenny’s, the French stallion (by Winningmood) helped define the young Israeli rider’s international career from 2019–2021.
“[Volnay] had great success with him for about three years. Teddy jumped him on the Nations Cup team at Deeridge Farm [in Wellington, FL] and in a few five star Grand Prix and stuff like that,” shared Kenny.
Vlock and Volnay du Boiseville would log just one podium finish in their time together, a second in a CSI5* 1.45m class at Spruce Meadows in Calgary. But the experience gained riding on Nations Cup teams in St. Gallen and Wellington with the stallion helped pave his way onto the Olympic stage. At 24, Vlock represented Israeli at the Tokyo Games aboard his other mount, Amsterdam 27.
He hasn’t made an international appearance since. After the Games, Vlock passed the ride on Volnay onto Kenny, a move that yielded instant rewards when, one month later, they won a 5* 1.50m class at Aachen.
In the 14 months since Kenny and the 13-year-old stallion have logged nine podium finishes, including six wins, and amassed over 227,388 euros in prize money, according to Jumpr App.
“He’s been amazing. He won a four star Grand Prix in Wellington [in March 2022], and was second in the five star Grand Prix in Monaco [in July 2022]. He just been an incredible horse, so I’m very lucky to have him,” said Kenny.
And that’s only their 1.60m record he’s referring to. The pair picked up a pair of CSIO5* 1.55m wins in Italy in May as well as two third-place finishes in 5* 1.55m classes in Rome and New York in September. To date, they boast a 62% top 10 finish rate over 13 rounds at the height.
And the winning shows no sign of slowing.
On Friday at MLSJ Thermal I in California, they added another victory to that growing list—and a decisive one. Topping a 12-horse jump off in the Whittier CSI5* 1.50m on the Grass Field at Desert International Horse Park, Kenny and the well mannered stallion shaved over a second off the leading time set by world No. 5 Conor Swail and Theo 160.
“My horse felt very good in the warm up. He was jumping great. Conor was obviously very quick, as always. I just thought I wanted to try and be as quick as I possibly could without rushing him too much,” said Kenny.
Come Sunday, he’ll look for a repeat performance from the well mannered stallion.
Kenny is aiming Volnay at the Grand Prix for both weeks at MLSJ Thermal and will ride Chic Chic in Saturday’s MLSJ Team Event:
“He’s such a cool horse, like, you just enjoy riding him. He’s so fun. When you go in the ring, you just really appreciate the horse. His ability is fantastic and you just try and stay out of his way.”