How Quinn 33 Became Tanner Korotkin's Winningest Partner
Tanner Korotkin and Quinn 33 win the CSI3* Lugano Diamonds Grand Prix in Lexington, KY, part of the Split Rock Jumping Tour. Photo by Winslow Photography.
Tanner Korotkin admits, Quinn 33's arrival to his string was unexpected.
The 21-year-old was preparing to show at the Kentucky Summer Horse Show when a chestnut gelding was shipped to him—a "kind of spur-of-the-moment" move—from Ocala, FL. The horse, 12-year-old Holsteiner Quinn 33 (Quidam de Revel x Contender) would be a sale horse for him to campaign in international classes.
Korotkin already had a formidable pair of top mounts at the FEI level in Volo's Diamond and Ideal. Quinn quickly let Korotkin know that he was special in his own right.
"After one week of showing, we went straight into FEI classes," Korotkin recalled. "And at our first FEI show, he won."
In their first foray into Major League Show Jumping as a member of the Spy Coast Spies, Korotkin and Quinn took a five-star victory in the CSI5* 1.45m Speed in Traverse City, MI. They'd quickly add to that tally with another five-star win at Wesley Clover Parks in Ottawa (CAN). And in October, the pair topped a nine-horse jump-off in the CSI3* $100,000 Lugano Diamonds Grand Prix in Lexington, KY, part of the Split Rock Jumping Tour's fall hunter/jumper show series.
After returning to Wellington for the winter season, Korotkin and Quinn won both the 1.40m Open Stake and the National Standard Grand Prix at the SFHJA Charity Horse Show—the first Saturday night grand prix of the 2022-2023 winter show season.
"He's just a clear round machine, and if he goes clear, I like to say that he's usually up there to win," Korotkin said. "I've always loved that type of horse. He sees the jump, and he really wants to take you there. He's so fast: You land from the jump, and you're instantly on track, galloping to the next.
"You're always fighting to slow him down a little bit, just because he wants to keep going that much," he added. "He's just a very, very hot, quirky dude that loves his job."
Tanner Korotkin and Quinn 33 win the $40,000 Grand Prix at the SFHJA Charity Horse Show. Photo by SportFot.
Quinn's path to Korotkin was a winding one. Owner Rupert Winkelmann first met the gelding in Germany and purchased him as an investment with the hopes of seeing him and his rider at the time, Zascha Nygaard Andreasen (DEN), qualify for the 2021 European Championships in Riesenbeck (GER).
That goal was accomplished, and after those championships, Quinn was imported to the U.S. A variety of riders took the reins on the chestnut, including Alison Robitaille (USA), who took a CSI2* win with Quinn in February; Diego Javier Vivero (ECU); and Winkelmann himself. But Winkelmann wanted his mount to have a chance at a five-star campaign, so he made a phone call to Shane Sweetnam (IRL) at Sweet Oak Farm to see if his horse could pair up with Korotkin.
"Everyone claims to have a winner and a horse that will work [out] right away," Winkelmann said. "I kind of had to convince [Sweetnam] to put [Quinn] in his program and have Tanner ride him, but they had a great start right from the beginning. They were winning five-stars, they won a three-star grand prix, and now they're winning in Wellington. I never had a doubt." Once Korotkin sat on Quinn, he needed little convincing. But it was their win in Ottawa that really affirmed his belief in the hard-trying horse.
"It was actually my first serious, serious class on him. It was a very big track in the grass field, with a lot of very good riders," Korotkin said. "I didn't know him all that well, but I knew that he had the capability to go clear, and he had the capability to win. Once we got in the jump-off, I just let him go and let him do his job, and he flew around there. I think he won by two or three seconds. "I just try to soften with my hands a little bit and open him up," he added, "but then I also have to make sure I don't let him get too quick, because that's just how he is." Add it all up, and Korotkin and Quinn have won five classes since August, checking off milestone after milestone. Saturday night in Wellington, the pair topped another nine-horse jump-off, outpacing Sweetnam and Out of the Blue SCF. "When you know Quinn has been clear the first round, I feel like there’s almost no beating him in the jump-off, because he's so fast," Winkelmann said. "I get more nervous watching than riding, but I actually enjoy the jump-off, because I watch others go, and I think, 'Not fast enough, not fast enough,' and just hope Tanner stays calm. He does that, and it's fun watching them." Saturday marked not only the pair's first win under the lights, but also Korotkin's first grand prix victory on his own as a professional. While still working with and riding a variety of horses at Sweet Oak Farm, Korotkin is now based out of his family's Castlewood Farm, where he is establishing his own program, with the ability to take on more sale horses, like Quinn. "Working for Shane gave me a ton of experience with everything, but I'm still young and there's still a lot to learn," Korotkin said. "I learn from everyone around me, but I'm at the point now where the things I've learned, I'm able to implement into my own system. Doing everything on your own is another thing you have to learn, so I'm grateful to still have Shane's guidance on the side. Mainly, I'm focusing on myself, my horses and buying and selling."