Pablo Barrios Claims $50,000 Leading Rider Award in 2016 Hagyard Challenge Series

Written by: Lauren Baker
Client: Kentucky Horse Shows LLC
Release Date: 2016-10-03

Lexington, Ky. – Oct. 3, 2016 – After seven weeks of challenging competition wrapped up at the Kentucky National Horse Show, Pablo Barrios topped the charts to take home the $50,000 Leading Rider Award in the 2016 Hagyard Challenge Series: a summer-long series of seven show jumping events held at the Kentucky Horse Park. Aaron Vale finished second in the final standings, earning the $10,000 rider bonus for being the runner-up.

Barrios missed one of the Challenge Series events while competing for Venezuela in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, and said he worried that Vale would overtake him in his absence. However, Barrios secured a wide enough lead throughout the rest of the season to stay on top, racking up a total of 1130 points to claim the bonus.

“It’s always great to win this bonus,” Barrios said. “This is the first time I got to the last show with someone else so close in the points. In this case it was Aaron Vale. The final class was pretty exciting, especially because we know that any one of us was capable of winning the bonus. I was lucky that my horses jumped great, and Antares ended up winning the grand prix, so that was enough to win the bonus. The series is great; when you know the points are on the line, there’s extra pressure that makes it fun.”

Barrios went on to thank his team and his personal sponsors for their continued support, including Devocoux, Animo USA, Purina, Parlanti, Kask, Choice of Champions, Kentucky Horsewear, Healthy Coat and MDC Stirrups.

For the third year, the Hagyard Challenge Series offered an additional $10,000 rider bonus for the runner-up. This year, it was Vale who collected the secondary bonus, taking home top ribbons throughout the series with multiple horses.Hagyard Equine Medical Institute’s Dr. Stuart Brown commented, “All of us at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute continue to be proud to support the equestrian competitions here at the Kentucky Horse Park, and no better example of that commitment exists than with the Hagyard Challenge Series. This year saw another exciting series of grand prix-level jumping that began with the first class in May and culminated in September at our finale, The Betsy, where we awarded the Leading Rider and Reserve Champion Bonuses for the series.

“We would like to congratulate Pablo Barrios for a successful quest to win this year’s $50,000 Leading Rider Award and Aaron Vale as the reserve champion and $10,000 recipient. Both these riders bring the highest level of sportsmanship to the series at the Kentucky Horse Park, and we are grateful for their commitment to this competition and the level of exciting performance they bring to this venue along with all the other riders participating in the Series. We can only look forward to wishes for another successful season of great competition next season here in Lexington.”

Hagyard Equine Medical Institute is one of the oldest and largest equine veterinary practices in the world. Founded in 1876, the institute offers a staff with qualifications unparalleled by any single non-university veterinary group in the equine industry, and Hagyard veterinarians have dedicated themselves to the health and wellbeing of the horse.

The facility at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute offers 13 Digital Radiology systems, 1.5 Tesla Siemens MRI, Nuclear Scintigraphy, an on-site laboratory, an on-site pharmacy, full surgical services, 24-hour emergency services and Hyperbaric Medicine. The institute has practiced veterinary medicine since 1876 and is currently composed of over 50 experienced veterinarians, with 13 board certifications in specialty areas of Medicine, Surgery, Critical Care, and Theriogenology. For more information about the Hagyard Equine Medical Institute please visit

Several generous sponsors have helped make this exciting series event happen. These gracious supporters include title sponsor MWI Animal Health and presenting sponsor Zoetis as well as Dean Dorton Allen Ford, PLLC, Hallway Feeds, Audi of Lexington, Pike & Preston, Sallee Horse Vans and Hagyard Pharmacy. Additional sponsors include Equine Therapy and FooteWorks.

For more information about the Kentucky Horse Shows, please visit


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