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McClain Ward takes his third New Albany Classic: Event benefits The Center for Family Safety and Healing

September 24, 2012 By: janwest Category: General

McLain Ward on his winning mount at the New Albany Classic Invitational Grand Prix
Photo ©Curtis Wallis

[New Albany, OH, September 23, 2012] The New Albany Classic Invitational Grand Prix & Family Day celebrated 15 years of support for the fight against family violence at the home of Abigail and Les Wexner in New Albany, Ohio today, attracting a crowd of 18,000 people to cheer on the participants in the Grand Prix competition.

U.S. rider McClain Ward prevailed again aboard Pjotter Van De Zonnehoeve (PJ), whom he won the class on in 2011, as well. Ward and PJ had a winning time of 42.12 in a jump off field of nine riders.

Awards are presented to McLain Ward for his second consecutive year to win the New Albany Classic Invitational Grand Prix
Photo ©Curtis Wallis

The Classic hosted a total of 27 riders from around the world including five Olympic competitors. This year, The Classic also welcomed a handful of younger riders at the beginning of their Grand Prix careers including seventeen-year old New Albany resident, Gabriela Mershad, seventeen-year old Mattias Tromp out of North Salem, New York and nineteen-year old Emily Short, from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; a sophomore at nearby Denison University.

Abigail Wexner said, “This was an anniversary party like no other and I’m thrilled that we had nine competitors go to the jump off. The crowd was really enthusiastic and it made for a wonderful ending to this picture perfect day. I’m thankful to all of the families, volunteers and sponsors that came out to help others in need. It’s truly a team effort and I’m so very grateful.”

The Classic drew 18,000 people to the home of Abigail and Leslie Wexner, again raising more than $1 million to support the work of The Center for Family Safety and Healing. The Tween Brands Concert presented by Justice featured Nashville-based pop music sensation Hot Chelle Rae as the headline act with British YouTube phenom Conor Maynard as the opening act. These performers added to the roster of previous Classic talent including Big Time Rush, David Archuleta, The Jonas Brothers, Demi Lovato and Jordin Sparks.

Along with the Grand Prix show jumping competition featuring some of the world’s leading equestrians and the national headline concert, guests were treated to a myriad of other activities including carnival rides, petting zoos, pig races, crafts, games and so much more.

About The Classic:

The Classic is a family-focused event founded and hosted by Abigail Wexner as the primary fundraiser for The Center for Family Safety and Healing. The Center is the result of a recent merger between The Columbus Coalition Against Family Violence and The Center for Family Advocacy at Nationwide Children’s. The all-day event is held at the Wexner home in New Albany and features traditional carnival rides, games and activities as well as the Tween Brands Concert. The day culminates with an internationally sanctioned invitational show jumping Grand Prix featuring thirty of the top professional riders from around the world. To date, The Classic has generated more the $18.5 million in support for The Classic.