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Kevin Babington Repeats Devon Grand Prix Victory
with Mark Q

July 2016

Kevin Babington and Mark Q repeated their 2011 victory in the $225,000 Sapphire Grand Prix of Devon CSI4*, beating Danielle Torano and McLain Ward in a three-horse jump-off.

A crowd of 9,000 spectators turned out for the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair's highlight event. Only three were able to master the first round, and it was Babington, of Gwynned Valley, PA and Mark Q that were the pathfinders. Returning at the top of the tiebreaker, they once again left all the rails intact to set the pace to beat at 38.43 seconds.

The second to return was Danielle Torano, Mohrsville, PA, aboard Callas III. With a slightly more conservative path on the 9-year-old mount, the rider and mother of two cleared the track in 39.49 seconds to take over second place behind Babington. At the end of the night, Torano was honored with the Richard E. McDevitt Style Award for the rider who exemplified the best style of riding.

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Pennsylvanians Win Big at the Devon Horse Show
by Suzy Lucine - July 2016

The 120th Annual Devon Horse Show and Country Fair, held May 26-June 5 in Devon, PA, is the longest running and largest outdoor multi-breed competition in the United States. With the grandeur of Philadelphia's prestigious Main Line setting the stage, the event features a world-class field that annually ranks among the most prominent internationally. The event also includes the Country Fair that offers world-class shopping, rides and games for kids, multiple dining options and special entertainment events. To date, Devon volunteers have raised more than $14,000,000 for the Bryn Mawr Hospital.

Devon President Richard O’Donnell said there were almost 3,000 entries, and the gate count on Thursday evening for the $225,000 Sapphire Grand Prix of Devon was 14,728 (and that doesn’t count the international viewers on the live feed provided by USEF).

Competition for the 11-day event was held in the Dixon Oval and the Gold Ring. In addition to the competition, there were also carriage racing exhibitions and appearances by the Mummers. 

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Rescued Horses Freeze Branded for Safety
By Suzanne Bush - July 2016

There are lots of potential tragedies that can strike a horse that has been rescued from near-starvation and abuse, but one of the most devastating is the possibility that the horse could wind up at an auction where so-called “kill buyers” are buying up horses to take to Canadian abattoirs.

Most horse rescue groups do everything they can to protect the animals in their care; the ultimate goal is to rehabilitate horses and get them adopted by people who will protect and care for them. Adopters are almost always required to sign contracts that ensure the horse they adopt will not go to auction. The contracts usually guarantee the rescue organizations first right of refusal in the event that adopters can no longer care for the horse, or no longer want the horse. Thus, a horse once rescued should never face the uncertainty of an auction again.

Sometimes, though, people who adopt horses from rescue groups—for any number of reasons—don’t fulfill the contracts they sign. Instead, they try to sell the horses at auction, leaving the horses vulnerable to the possibility of a long, terrible trip and death at the abattoirs.

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Straight To It Wins Radnor Hunt Cup
by Marcella Peyre-Ferry - July 2016

Trainer Jack Fisher saddled the winners in the two top races on the card at the 86th running of the Radnor Hunt Races, Saturday, May 21.

Fisher trained Straight To It to the win in the $30,000 Radnor Hunt Cup Timber Race for owner Sheila Williams. The only timber race on the card, the Radnor Hunt Cup, was run in memory of George Strawbridge, Sr.

After the first of three times around the course, Personal Brew under Willie McCarthy was well ahead of Gustav Dahl on Top Man Michael, with several lengths more to the rest of the field.  Those two were still on top as they went through the stretch again, but now the pack was closing in on them. The group remained that way for yet another time down the stretch before the pace setters started to lose their hold on the lead. Strongest of the challengers was Straight To It, who took control late on the back side of the course and drew away from there. He finished the race in a time of 6:40:2/5, winning by over nine lengths.

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