Wellington, FL – 15-year-old Emanuel Andrade of Venezuela dominated the competition at the 2012 FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival held January 11 to April 1 in Wellington, FL.
At the conclusion of the 12-week show jumping circuit, Andrade was presented as the Future Champions Leading Junior Jumper Rider, sponsored by Marley Goodman. Over the course of the competition, Andrade claimed six Championship and 12 Reserve Championship titles. While 17 of those 18 titles were claimed in the Junior Jumper divisions, Andrade also earned the Six-Year-Old Young Jumper Horse Reserve Championship title during week 11 riding Black Pearl.
“I am really proud of the championship titles, and of winning more than 20 classes,” said Andrade, who claimed victory on 23 occasions over the course of the circuit. “I am really excited about receiving the Future Champions Award, and very happy with my progress. I appreciate the support of my family and my trainers at Hollow Creek Farm.
None of this would be possible without them.”
With a string of nine horses competing in the High, Medium and Low Junior Jumper divisions, Andrade was well-mounted by his trainers Angel Karolyi and Andrea King of Hollow Creek Farm, based in Aiken, South Carolina. Having the horse power is one thing; having the skill to succeed is another.
“I learned that the competition is very strong in Wellington,” said Andrade, who commuted every second week between Wellington, Florida, and his native Venezuela where he attends school. “There are so many people competing here. You don’t only need nice horses, but you need to ride well. And because you are dealing with animals, you must also have a strong horsemanship program behind it all to get through the 12 weeks of competition.”
During weeks two, five and six of competition at the FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival, Andrade rode Costa, a 13-year-old Holsteiner mare, to the High Junior Jumper Championship title. In week eight, it was Oxford Vieux Moulin, a 10-year-old selle francais gelding, that claimed the Medium Junior Jumper Championship. During weeks five and six, Andrade won back-to-back Low Junior Jumper Championship titles with P.S. I Love You, a 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood mare.
Despite his success with those three horses, it was Tiny Tim, a 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, that became Andrade’s favorite over the course of the Winter Equestrian Festival.
“He is super careful and has good scope,” said Andrade, who acquired Tiny Tim through British team veteran Nick Skelton. “He is big for me and not easy to ride, but he is helping me to improve my riding ability.”
His coach, professional rider Angel Karolyi, was pleased with his student’s progress this winter.
“Emanuel had an incredible circuit in Wellington,” said Karolyi, 25, who recently represented Venezuela at the 2011 Pan American Games as well as in the $75,000 G&C Nations’ Cup in Wellington on March 2. “To maintain that type of form and momentum in our sport is very difficult, and Emanuel handled it with skill and maturity well beyond his years.”
Andrade has been working with Karolyi, a member of the Venezuelan gold medal team at the 2010 Central American and Caribbean Games, and renowned horsewoman King for over a year. He also competes in Venezuela, where he is starting to gain experience jumping at the grand prix level.
“In addition to being talented, one of the best things about Emanuel is that he is so easy to work with,” said King, who has been managing Andrade’s horses for over a year. “He takes it very seriously, and wants to do his best. I think he has what it takes to make it to the top of this sport.”
With the Winter Equestrian Festival finished for the season, Andrade is looking forward to competing at the Kentucky Horse Shows in May before traveling to Spruce Meadows in Calgary, Canada, for its summer tournaments in June and July.