73rd Tryon Block House Races Sees Mell Boucher and The Happy Giant Win Highlight Block House Race

Jun 7, 2021 - 3:59 PM

For Immediate Release

Columbus, NC – June 7, 2021 – Mell Boucher (Camden, SC) and The Happy Giant, owned and trained by Allison Fulmer, stole the show as winners of the $30,000 Block House Race at the 73rd Tryon Block House Races, the historic steeplechase of Tryon Riding & Hunt Club.


After two years of race postponement due to track renovations and COVID-19, thousands of spectators gathered at tailgates and via live stream for the 2021 running of the races with a special welcome by the Green Creek Hounds. The 2021 Tryon Block House Races were proudly sponsored by Land Rover of AshevilleWNCW and Odom Engineering.

Race 3 Action 2The Carter P. Brown Memorial Race saw Gerard Galligan (left) pilot Silver Crescent (GBR) to win

The feature race of the day and $30,000 Ratings Handicap Hurdle race, the Block House Race, finished with a win for The Happy Giant, with Mell Boucher in the tack for Allison Fulmer.
An apprentice for The Happy Giant’s owner and trainer, Boucher was pleased that her inaugural race on this horse resulted in a big win.

Race 4 Action 2Mell Boucher and The Happy Giant

“This is actually the first time I’ve ever ridden this horse in a race,” Boucher revealed after stepping in to take the ride after The Happy Giant’s jockey was injured recently. After receiving detailed instructions on how to ride the race, Boucher came away with a win after waiting patiently to make her move three fences from home. “The horse was great out there, and settled really nicely. He came out with a nice run. I thought I might get to the front too soon,” Boucher admitted, “but he was jumping so great that I just let that momentum carry me.”

Race 4 PresentationMell Boucher and Allison Fulmer were presented with the Roger & Jennifer Smith Cup, which celebrates the wonderful co-founders of the Tryon International Equestrian Center who led the vision of bringing the steeplechase to its exciting new venue, the Green Creek Race Course, in an effort to give competitors and spectators alike the best experience possible.

Boucher had never ridden at the Green Creek Race Course prior to her win with The Happy Giant, but found the change of scenery – and direction – refreshing. “This is the first year I’ve ridden here. It’s very different from others because it’s a right-handed track instead of left-handed. I find that some of the horses really like going in a different direction. They did a great job watering [the course],” Boucher concluded, noting the fully-irrigated track. “It’s not too firm.”

Race Results:

Vincent Van GoGo claimed the Cannon H. Memorial Race, a $10,000 Maiden Claiming Hurdle race with jockey Graham Watters in the irons for Flying Elvis Stables.

Race 1The Cannon Harmon Memorial Trophy is sponsored by Susan Petty and memorializes her accomplished and joyful son, Cannon Harmon, who shared his love of life with friends and family on steeplechase day.

The Tryon Riding & Hunt Club Race, featuring a $20,000 Maiden Hurdle test, saw only two finishers after two unseated riders and remaining horses retired on course. Chetzeron, the french-bred entry owned by Irvin S. Naylor, was piloted to a win by Dan Nevin.

Race 2The Tryon Riding & Hunt Club Mulberry Farm Cup commemorates the Tryon farm built by George S. Brannon that welcomed the U.S. showjumping and three-day eventing Olympic team members who competed here in the official team selection trials in 1956 and 1957. The Mulberry Farm Trophy, named for the family farm, was established in 2017 by Mr. and Mrs. Andrew H. Brannon as a tribute to four generations of active participation in and support for the Tryon Riding & Hunt Club and the local equestrian community.

The Carter P. Brown Memorial Race saw Gerard Galligan pilot Silver Crescent (GBR) to win the $20,000 Maiden Hurdle race for Ballybristol Farm LLC.

Race 3 PresentationThe Carter P. Brown Memorial Trophy is named for the founder of the Tryon Riding & Hunt Club who ran (and won) the first local ‘chase in 1934 and is celebrated by the community for his essential role in establishing Tryon’s rich equestrian heritage.

Hurtgen Forest was the winner of the Dr. John Bradshaw Memorial Race, a Training Flat race, by two lengths with rider Elizabeth Scully for Carrington Holdings LLC.

Race 5 PresentationThe The Dr. John S. Bradshaw Memorial Trophy is dedicated to a beloved local surgeon whose leadership of the Block House steeplechase from 1966-1978 brought thousands more spectators to enjoy the community’s big day.

Screen Shot 2021-06-07 at 3.08.49 PM

Replay the entire day!

Courtesy of the National Steeplechase Association, catch a recap of each race with replays of the live action and insight on each winner by clicking here.


Steeplechase Program CoverView the Official Program here


Planning Icon-Race ResultsFor full race results from the Tryon Block House Races, click here.

Photos ©TIEC. These photos may be used once in relation to this press release. With questions, contact media@tryon.com



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