Lisa Goldman-Smolen stands for presentation. Photo by Alison Hartwell Photography

During the $24,500 Adeptus Grand Prix at the HITS Chicago Lamplight Spring Classic II on Saturday afternoon, May 18, 2024, Lisa Goldman-Smolen once again showcased her exceptional partnership with Sovereign.

Some of the nation’s top horse-and-rider combinations vied for winning honors in the week’s showcase event. Out of the first round, only five riders were able to produce a clear round to return for the jump-off. Goldman-Smolen had her first attempt across the short course with Ivaro N, Barbara Disko’s KWPN Gelding (Elvaro x Celli). The pair produced a clear round and clocked in at a speedy 35.467 seconds, eventually earning third place. Following, Tiffany Hammock guided Ghana FS Z, an 11-year-old Zangersheide mare (Glasgow W vh Merelsnest) from Foxwood Farms, to a clear round with an impressive time of 34.854 seconds, ultimately securing second place. Finally, Goldman-Smolen returned with her veteran partner, Sovereign, to take home the blue ribbon, producing another clear round at an unbeatable time of 34.028 seconds.

Lisa Goldman-Smolen and Sovereign. Photo by Alison Hartwell Photography

“Sovereign just knows when it’s time for business, and when to come out and do well,” said Goldman-Smolen. He gets really excited whenever he sees a trailer, and he’s all about his job, which is so incredible to have.”

The day’s events also highlighted the talent of 18-year-old Selle Français stallion ​​(Frontal x Galledent) owned by Barbara Disko, with Goldman-Smolen sharing, “Sovereign has one of the best canters I’ve ever sat on. It’s a natural balance and power that’s just so wonderful. He knows when it’s time for business and loves being in the show environment. He never gets nervous or worried, no matter what happens.”

Looking to the future, Goldman-Smolen is excited about Sovereign’s progeny.

Tiffany Hammack and Ghana FS Z. Photo by Alison Hartwell Photography

“Sovereign has a six-year-old up-and-coming horse that we brought along,” she detailed “We did some of the young age group classes at HITS Ocala this year, and he’s really promising. The one I’m most excited for is a three-year-old this year that is out of a sister to my first grand prix horse ever.”

Reflecting on her experience at the boutique venue, Goldman-Smolen added, “Lamplight is always beautiful. They do a great job, and the footing has been wonderful even with the huge rains we had one of the weeks. The staff do such a beautiful job keeping the grounds in top shape. This week has also been fun as the young horses and the littler kids who normally don’t get to go in the grand prix ring got to experience it in their classes.”

Lisa Goldman-Smolen and Ivaro N. Photo by Alison Hartwell Photography

Goldman-Smolen also expressed gratitude towards Barbara Disko, stating, “A huge thank you to Barbara Disko, my owner. She owns both of the horses I did in the Grand Prix this week and has always been my biggest supporter besides my mother. I’m so thankful to her for letting me be Sovereign’s partner for the past eight years.”

Goldman-Smolen’s performance and connection with Sovereign continue to impress, making them a formidable pair in the show jumping world.

With Lamplight Spring Classic II coming to a close, competition will resume Wednesday, May 22, 2024, marking the beginning of the final week of the Spring Classic Series. For a full list of class results, please visit