Schuyler Dayner and Basje Speed to $7,500 High Child/Adult Jumper Classic Win at HITS Ocala

Ocala, Fla. – March 11, 2023 – It was all about speed during Saturday’s $7,500 M&S/NAL/WIHS High Child/Adult Jumper Classic, where a field of 43 entries was whittled down to 11 double clear performances. The best ride of the day belonged to Schuyler Dayner and Basje, who sped across the finish line a full second ahead of second-place finishers Layne Brogden and Loughnatousa Bonmahon Blue Star. The third-place prize went to Alyson Gurney and Black Friday.

“It was a really cool class to do with my horse because he actually got injured a year ago, right after we purchased him, so this is my third show back with him,” expressed Dayner after her win. “We thought it would be a fun class to enter him in and see how we did, and it was really great!”

Schuyler Dayner and Basje. Photo by: ESI Photography

Jaime Morillo set a welcoming first round, which utilized the expansive Grand Prix ring and tested riders with an oxer-vertical double combination and a vertical-vertical double combination. Eleven produced double clear efforts over the short course, which included the vertical-vertical double combination, and finished with an inside turn to the final delicate plank vertical, which added faults to the scores of many of the qualifiers.

Going towards the end of the jump-off order, Dayner had the opportunity to watch several others and knew she would need to lay on the gas with Basje to land at the top of the leaderboard. She went wide to the first fence to make a sharp inside turn, and the efficiency carried through the track as she dashed through the timers in a faultless 31.81 seconds.

“I wanted to stay a little wide to one so I could be really fast back to two and then gallop down and slow down for the double,” explained Dayner. “I thought it was really neat back to two on that inside turn and I galloped up to the vertical. I wanted make sure I got really square to the last plank so that he jumped that well.”

Alyson Gurney and Black Friday. Photo by: ESI Photography

Gurney and Black Friday were next in the ring, and while they were quicker than most, their clear time of 33.28 seconds would eventually rank third. Brogden and Loughnatousa Bonmahon Blue Star were the penultimate combination and slid into second with all the rails intact in 32.95 seconds, leaving Dayner to lead the lap of honor.

Layne Brogden and Loughnatousa Bonmahon Blue Star. Photo by: ESI Photography

Although Dayner and Basje have not had many opportunities to compete together yet, she has enjoyed having him in the barn. “He's a very strong horse, but he's super fun and gives you a lot of confidence,” she smiled. “He has a very goofy personality and likes to suck on his tongue.”

Riding out of her family’s Baxter Lane Farm in Odessa, FL, HITS Ocala is a regular stop for Dayner each winter. “I love HITS,” she concluded. “I've been here my whole life. I think it's a great show and I love all the new improvements they've made.”

Schuyler Dayner and Basje. Photo by: ESI Photography

Many of the riders from Saturday’s feature class will aim towards the $25,000 High Child/Adult Jumper Classic, sponsored by Peterson & Smith, taking center stage during the final week of competition. Week Eight of the HITS Ocala Winter Circuit will conclude on Sunday with the $100,000 Purina Grand Prix. The Overlook Club features the perfect view of the ring and is open to all, with a special brunch every Sunday for $45 per person. The season at HITS Ocala will culminate with the Great American $300,000 Grand Prix on Sunday, March 26, with one of the biggest purses in the country. Make sure to visit the horse show office or for more information.