Darragh Kenny takes his opening win of 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival in Florida

Darragh Kenny and Billy Dorito, winners of the Bainbridge 1.40m Speed Challenge at the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival in Florida. Photo Credit: Sportfot.

Ireland’s Darragh Kenny and his mount, Billy Dorito, bested a field of 68 entries to win the $6,000 Bainbridge 1.40m Speed Challenge by a margin of more than three seconds during the first week of the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, Florida.

Kenny and Billy Dorito were the seventh entry to contest the Eric Hasbrouck-designed track, stopping the clock in a quick and clear 71.221 seconds. While 21 entries would jump clear throughout the class, none would catch the early time to beat set by Kenny and the nine-year-old bay gelding.

Coming the closest and ultimately taking second with a time of 74.482 seconds was his fellow Irish rider James Chawke and Valentino D’Elte, a 10-year-old Selle Français gelding.

Proving to be quick across the arena, Kenny also finished in third with a time of 74.691 seconds aboard Kavalli di Magico, a nine-year-old Belgian Warmblood stallion.

With an initial 2019 WEF victory under his belt, Kenny is looking forward to continuing a strong season – and to being in Wellington for the duration.

“I’m happy to be here in one place for a long period of time,” concluded Kenny. “I have a house here; we have a farm here, so it’s very nice. It’s easy to be here in one place. All of my clients are here; all of the sales horses are here, so we’re busy with that. WEF does a good job. The big jumping is very good as well as the management and everything else, so it’s enjoyable to be here.”

Final Result: $6,000 Bainbridge 1.40m Speed Challenge

1 Billy Dorito and Darragh Kenny (IRL), 0/71.221 seconds.

2 Valentino D’Elte and James Chawke (IRL), 0/74.482 seconds.

3 Kavalli Di Magico and Darragh Kenny (IRL), 0/74.691 seconds.

 

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