Sunday, June 12, 2011

Hunters: Sauguerties: Patricia Griffith dominates the $5,000 Devoucoux Hunter Prix to highlight the hunters at HITS-on-the-Hudson III in Saugerties, New York

© ESI Photography.
Patricia Griffith on course with Lexi Maounis' Platinum in Saturday's $5,000 Devoucoux Hunter Prix at HITS-on-the-Hudson in Saugerties, New York.

SAUGERTIES, NEW YORK (June 12, 2011) — Patricia Griffith made the most of her time at HITS-on-the-Hudson this week when she took first and second place against a field of 61 starters in Saturday's $5,000 Devoucoux Hunter Prix. She finished first aboard Platinum and second aboard Sienna, both owned by Lexi Maounis.

“I thought it was a perfect course,” said Griffith of Katonah, New York, who is a professional at Heritage Farm. “Rian [Beals] did a great job with the course. It had a perfect mix of single and bending lines that all rode very nicely.”

Griffith had two horses in the second round, which saw the top 12 with the highest scores from the first round return. She showed first aboard Sienna and took over the lead, previously held by Jenny Fischer and Stormy Good’s Freedom’s Storm. Fischer and Freedom's Storm, the winners of last week’s $5,000 Devoucoux Hunter Prix, finished third in the ribbons this week.

© ESI Photography.
HITS’ Lisa Engel is joined by Guillaume Jullienne of Devoucoux to present the awards to Patricia Griffith and Platinum after their win in Saturday's $5,000 Devoucoux Hunter Prix in Saugerties, New York.

“After I showed Sienna I thought my score would be really hard to beat,” Griffith explained. “I was surprised when I returned again last on Platinum that I was able to beat my own score. This horse has been fantastic though and I’m very proud of the win.”

Earning a spot in the Diamond Mills $500,000 Hunter Prix Final has become Griffith’s number one goal this season. “I went to Ocala for the very first time this winter in order to get a jump-start on qualifying,” she explained. “I plan on showing all summer long here in Saugerties in order to qualify.”

The Diamond Mills $500,000 Hunter Prix Final has gone platinum in the eyes of countless hunter riders who compete each week. “I think the weekly Devoucoux Hunter Prix and the [Diamond Mills] Final is just a great idea,” said Griffith. “It’s totally revived the hunters. Each week it’s gotten just as much excitement as the Grand Prix and that’s saying a lot. I think this summer it will be even more exciting as we get closer to the Final. These classes have gotten a lot of well-deserved attention so far.”

Rounding out the top five in the class was David Oliynyk of Plainville, Massachusetts aboard Lori Gaudet’s Generous in fourth place and Lillie Keenan of New York, New York aboard Don Stewart’s Confidential in fifth place.

The Devoucoux Hunter Prix will return this summer at HITS Culpeper (July 6 – 17) and will feature two events. The HITS-on-the-Hudson Summer Series returns to Saugerties on July 20 for three consecutive weeks and will feature three crucial qualifiers, as riders eagerly compete for points in order to qualify for the Diamond Mills $500,000 Hunter Prix Final, which takes place on Saturday and Sunday, September 10-11 at HITS-on-the-Hudson.

About Devoucoux
Devoucoux, makers of fine French saddles, is proud to be the title sponsor of each and every qualifying Hunter Prix leading up to this year's phenomenal Diamond Mills $500,000 3'3" Hunter Prix Final. The Devoucoux Hunter Prix will be a featured event at all HITS horse shows this season as riders from around the country set out to qualify for the historic Diamond Mills Hunter Prix Final, which will take place September 10-11 at HITS-on-the-Hudson in Saugerties, New York.

HITS, Inc. produces high-quality, international-level hunter/jumper horse shows. Based in upstate New York in the village of Saugerties, HITS has been producing shows since 1982 and is now a nationwide company with world-class circuits in California, Florida, Arizona, New York and Virginia. In 2010, HITS took the industry to new heights when it hosted the first-ever Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix. HITS will once again offer the most innovative weekend in show jumping history in 2011 when it hosts the second annual Pfizer Million and the inaugural Diamond Mills $500,000 Hunter Prix Final, September 10-11, at HITS-on-the-Hudson in Saugerties, New York.

For more information and a complete schedule of classes and events, visit Stay connected with HITS, join us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter!