Peroni & Orlon Top $250K Hunters

By September 6, 2015
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Margot Peroni and Orlon, won the 4-round Platinum Performance $250,000 Hunter Prix Final, taking home a $75,000 check. (Photo: ESI Photography)

Margot Peroni and Orlon took the blue in the HITS Platinum Performance $250,000 Hunter Prix Final in Saugerties, NY, taking home a $75,000 share of the prize purse. It as a dramatic ascent for Peroni, of Califon, NJ, from last year’s 25th place finish in the competition riding the same horse.

After Friday’s two preliminary rounds, over a course designed by Rian Beals, the top 25 competitors moved on to Saturday’s two-round challenge.  Only the top four would return to the last of the four courses on September 5.

First of four in the order was Oliva Hellman aboard Sabrina Hellman’s Woodstock and they cruised through the course to receive scores of 85 and 82, for a total of 167 and 333 overall. Next it was Jacquelyn Maggiore’s turn, riding her own Contina. Having received scores in the mid-eighties in the previous rounds, the final round proved to be tricky for them, leaving with scores of 73 and 75 for a round total of 148 and 315 overall, for fourth.

Kimberly Maloomian and Invincible, owned by Ellen Toon, were third in the order and besting the two prior trips, they took the lead with scores of 82 and 87, totaling 169 and 339 overall.

The final trip of the day belonged to Peroni, who clearly proved that the additional year of experience paid off in spades in the partnership with Orlon.  “Kimberly was on Invincible and I knew they were going to be hard to beat. She’s an incredible rider and he’s a great horse,” Peroni said.

“Going into the last round, I looked at my trainer and we said ‘Whatever happens now is just icing on the cake, we’re going to go have fun,” she continued. “I saw the end of Kim’s round, and her scores came in and they were good but they weren’t what I know Kim can do, so I knew we had a shot at winning,” she continued.

Peroni gave it her all and delivered more than a smooth round – she gave an exceptional performance for scores of 87 and 87, totaling 171, 343.5 overall and the win. “I thought that she had a wonderful rhythm and pace going. She never deviated from it. I just thought her horse jumped so well,” Judge Jimmy Lee said.

“This is a dream come true,” Peroni admitted. “For me, for somebody that tries to make this sport work on a budget, this class is incredible. To have someone offer a class like this, with that much money, is huge. It’s going to make things a lot easier going forward.”

Added Lee: “I like that Tom has kept the traditional judging format which allows the judges to really reward the classic, traditional hunter round. I think that is very important. ”

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