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Blue Ribbon Rides At Blue Ridge



by Lauren Camp and Katherine Hansil

Judges: Michael Craighead
Scott Perrelli
Barbe Smith
Betty Gray
Ringmaster: William Whitley III
Announcer: Mark Farrar Jr.
USEF Steward: Joyce Hamblin
Photographer: Howard Schatzberg
Videographer: Horse Videos, Inc.
Organist: Jane Frye
Stable Manager: Steve Wilson
Paddock Master: Dan Shirley
Farrier: Travis Herlocker
Show Secretary: Joyce Wilson
Entry Secretaries: Barbara Woodlief
Sue Imbaratto
MOS Tabulator: Linda Williams
Show Manager: Elizabeth Holmes

FLETCHER, N.C.- The Blue Ridge Classic Horse Show was a huge success once again. In its 13th year, the show was a record setting event not only in numbers but in the quality of competition. Set in the
Blue Ridge Mountains in Fletcher, N.C., the show was held July 25-29. The weather was beautiful if not a little hot but that did not keep anyone home.

With over 570 horses competing, the crowds were wowed by performances for current and past world’s champions like CH Blackberry Delight, CH A Step Of Time and Carlswald Prince’s Dominoe. Junior exhibitor stars shone as new teams like Reedann’s Phine By Me and Bree Zandy, China Princess and Kinsey Broome and Phi Phalutin RR and Amy Hein swept their divisions. A record number of road ponies came to compete with 39 teams on the ground not to mention the 19 Hackney and harness ponies. The Morgan numbers were up as well this year with barns like Friday Farms, Garwood and Impossible Dream bringing their show strings.

It is amazing that exhibitors came from almost 50 percent of the United States to show here with 21 states represented. The show also brings in exhibitors from Canada. All around the show is as diverse as it gets. It also does not leave the beginner rider or horse out either with qualifying and championship classes for novice riders and limit horses in both the show pleasure and country pleasure divisions. What is also amazing is the quality of young horses with full classes in the two, three and four-year-old classes. While horses like Bono and I’m Something Wicked dueled in the Junior Five-Gaited, His Supreme Reflection and Andy Freseth paraded in true park style to the blue in the Junior Three-Gaited Park and Princely Charm and Steve Joyce marched down the rail in the Three-Year-Old Three-Gaited. One of the biggest thrills was seeing the first progeny of Sir William Robert in performance with an amazing performance from Mosette in the Two-Year-Old Fine Harness. Bret Day presented this talented star to the win for Tom Galbreath.

The show is not just about showing horses. As usual Liz Holmes and her staff did a great job of making sure every detail was attended to and that the show and its activities ran a smooth as silk. What this show also does a great job at is keeping the exhibitors in the spirit with evening parties. It all begins each morning with coffee and doughnuts. On Monday evening a Welcome Party was held and after Tuesday evening’s performance you could build your own sundae at the Pony Express Café. After Thursday evening’s performance everyone gathered around for the famous Progressive Barn Party with good eats like barbecue, tacos, margaritas, ice cream and yummy pina coladas. But what everyone waits for is the party on Friday night. Under the tent you could find all selections of great food and sweets and plenty of music to dance the night away. One of the highlights was when Chad Graham took control and crooned Sitting On The Dock Of The Bay.

The junior exhibitors are not left out either as activities were planned for them with a scavenger hunt on Thursday morning. Players had to find items like a horseshoe nail from the farrier, trace a trainer’s boot and get his/her signature and braid a piece of hay, red ribbon and black tape. Winning the 11-and-under was Rachel Tankersley while Caitlin Leith topped the 12-and-over. Always a kid at heart, Christy Johnson was given honorable mention as the “oldest” competitor! On Friday during the evening session they joined together for Junior Judging where they had to judge at least four classes. Cara Wolf was the most accurate of the 12-and-over while Jazmine Jones earned the top honor in the 11-and-under.

The full schedule of classes and great activities were not the only draw as the Western North Carolina Agricultural Center is top-notch with several working rings both open and covered. They added a path earlier this spring connecting the lower barns to the warm-up ring, making access a lot better. The area itself is a huge draw with the sightseeing, great dining, hiking and shopping, not to mention the street festival Bele Chere held downtown that weekend.

Highlight follow. Complete Saddlebred results can be searched by clicking on SADDLEBRED SHOW RESULTS; Morgan results can be found at MORGAN SHOW RESULTS.  Judges’ cards can be searched by clicking on JUDGES’ CARDS.

TUESDAY EVENING

A nice cool breeze filtered through the arena as a parade of stunning Saddlebreds made their way around the arena, each vying for the judges’ votes. Tuesday night at the Blue Ridge Classic Horse Show was not a disappointment, and the hospitality was unrivaled.

The first class of the evening was the Show Pleasure Driving for the amateur adults. Driving into victory with expert style and grace, and a unanimous pick of the judging panel, was Mary Lynn McMains and the cute I’m An Early Riser. Second in this competitive class belonged to Mahvalous Guy and Jeffrey Fetzer.

Looking like the champion he is and coming away with the unanimous blue ribbon in the Amateur Three-Gaited Park class was CH A Step Of Time and Luanne Kilday, trained by Debbie Foley. Although this is her first year in the amateur division, Rachael North put in a hard fought ride for second with Something Ventured. Having a good go for the yellow ribbon was the high-headed The Paper Boy ERB and Lindsey Greenwald.

The first group of Morgans to make their way though the gate for this breed was the Morgan Park Saddle Open class. Riding away with the top honors in this class was William Vidler and the sporty Graywood’s Kera. Reserve honors in this class belonged to GFF Riverdance and Mallory Eldred.

The Open Fine Harness horses paraded through the ring next for the American Saddlebreds. Top honors in the open division belonged to Bret Day and the lofty The Social Butterfly, owned by HyHorse Farm. Driving away with reserve honors was In Bold Print and Mike Barlow for Melissa Scrushy.

A fine class of Adult Show Pleasure horses took center stage next. Riding into the winner’s circle to claim top honors in this competitive class was Jamie Hitchin and CH In Neon ERB, trained by Cloverleaf Stables. Reserve honors in this competitive class belonged to Kelley Hollowell and CH My Good Bye under the direction of Lisa Heres-Rosenberger. Turning in a nice ride for the yellow ribbon was Diamond’s First Lady and Sam Garwood.

The Open Harness Ponies marched through the gate next for their qualifier. Robin Haynes and Wait and See’s Whiz Bang were named champions after a top performance under the direction of Marilyn Macfarlane. Mark Wilson was in the viceroy for reserve with Twin Willow’s Remington for owners T.J. and Juliet McDonald. Third in this class belonged to the elegant Cascade and Sharon Chrisman.

Having a lovely ride for the blue ribbon in the Morgan Hunter Pleasure Novice Horse class was Legendary And Noble and Krista Dent. The red ribbon for second belonged to BDM Aruba’s Destiny (CN) and Melinda Dennis.

Next through the gate were the speedy little road ponies and their amateur drivers. Racing into victory were Calvin Hobbs and Mary Gise, trained by Hollow Haven. Ann Fitzpatrick made the drive for reserve ribbons with Buckwheat.

The open class for the Saddlebred Western Pleasure took the ring next on Tuesday night. Jogging away with top honors were College Town and Christy Parker. Reserve in this class belonged to Sue’s Great Day and Fran Crumpler for Harry and Marilyn Swimmer.

Topping out a large field of Five-Gaited Show Pleasure horses for the top honors was the Hollow Haven-trained pair of Travis Van Zetten and Hero’s Jumpin’ Jack Flash. Gotta Be Gold and Jo Ann Griffin made a lovely show for the reserve honors. Having lots of fun and earning the yellow ribbon for third was Jennifer Fisher and James Lewis.

The new pair of Wuddacomeover and Debbie Foley came speeding through the gate and around the ring for the unanimous victory in the Roadster Horse To Bike Limit class. This eye-catching entry is owned by Luanne Kilday. Reserve honors in this class belonged to the Doris Crumpler-owned entry Quite Irresistible driven by Page Champion.

Twelve entries made the gate call on Tuesday night for the 13 and Under Three-Gaited Show Pleasure class. Riding away with top honors, under the direction of Delton Farms, were Stephanie Lockyer and CH My Special Sultan. The red ribbon in this large class belonged to Never Forget Me and Emily Stumbo.

All three judges agreed in the Three-Gaited Junior Horse class. Unanimously taking the blue ribbon back to Kentucky were Bret Day and the high-stepping Hallelujah Chorus. Joe Elam and Helen’s Charm took home the red ribbon for second in this nice class.

Six entries trotted into the ring for the Morgan English Pleasure Open class. Blue ribbon honors in this class belonged to Euchee Matthews and Raindrop’s Chisum. CN A Touch Better and Krista Dent captured the reserve honors.

Capturing the crowd’s attention with expressive ears and a lofty trot, Andy Freseth’s entry of His Supreme Reflection nearly floated away with the blue ribbon in the Junior Three-Gaited Park class. This striking horse was unanimously voted the winner by the judging panel. Midge Hunt and Mountainview’s Truly Amazing took home the red ribbon for reserve.

Hustling away with victory under the direction of Drowning Creek were Diamond Hustler and Rebekah Cloninger in the Road Horse Under Saddle class. Bunker Buster and May Klein sped into reserve honors. Third in this competitive road horse class belonged to Lindsey Greenwald and High Velocity.

Top honors in the Hackney Pony Pleasure Driving class belonged to the illustrious Pacifico’s Standing Ovation and Bob Anderson. This Hollow Haven trained pair was unanimously selected victors. Having a beautiful drive for reserve were Linda Fisher and Seamair Dear Sir.

Making his way to the winner’s circle yet again was Bret Day this time on Major Starbuck in the Five-Gaited Novice Horse class. Taking the red ribbon in this 11-entry class were Callaway’s Blue Streak and Debbie Foley. Capturing the crowd and taking the yellow ribbon were Simeon and Jackie Hale.

Looking picture perfect, under the direction of Hollow Haven, were Shannon Sewell and Mahvalous Asset for the unanimous victory in the Ladies Three-Gaited class. Reserve honors belonged to Heir Calendar Girl and Robin Haynes.

WEDNESDAY MORNING

A full schedule of competitive classes was scheduled for Wednesday morning of the Blue Ridge Classic Horse Show. Always a crowd pleaser, the Friesians captured the crowd’s attention with their walk/trot exhibition. Top honors belonged to the dazzling Gregor Von Eichenhof Oldenburg and Jocelyn Brock. Reserve honors in this class belonged to Hidde and Debra Sargent.

The next class belonged to the Three-Gaited Three-Year-Olds. It is always nice to see the up-and-coming talent, and talented certainly described the blue ribbon winner Princely Charm and rider/trainer Steve Joyce. Reserve in this class belonged to Whitehall’s Creekside Memories and Rick Felder.

A credit to Manager Liz Holmes, the Morgan horses are always welcomed at the Blue Ridge Classic, and they took center stage in the third class on Wednesday morning. The Open Morgan Hunter Pleasure blue ribbon belonged to the picture perfect pair of Warlock’s Amelia and Melinda Davis. William Vidler took the reserve ribbon in this class with Spiritwood’s Misty Memory.

The qualifying class of the 13 and Under Saddle Seat Equitation belonged to Madye Bell and Graywood’s Kera.

Next class through the gate was the Morgan Classic Pleasure Driving. Taking top honors and the blue ribbon was Coalition Royal Billing and June A. Davis. Second in this class belonged to Whitemud Forever Sunbeam and Mike Bertolani.

A competitive class of nine entries made the gate call for the 14-17 Pleasure Equitation class. The blue ribbon belonged to Caroline Jonsson riding Heir Brained Scheme. Sally McEwen and her partner Heathermoor’s Mister picked up the red ribbon.

Turning in an exquisite ride for the top ribbon in the Junior Exhibitor Park class was Bree Zandy on Reedann’s Phine By Me. Also having a competitive ride for the reserve ribbon was Adrienne Fitch and CH Wing’s Main Attraction.

Trotting into the ring next was the younger division of the pleasure equitation riders. Top honors in the 13 and under equitation belonged to Cheyenne Mabey and Highpoint’s Hot-Wired. Rachel Rafolski and That Takes The Cake had a ride for the reserve ribbon.

BDM Aruba’s Destiny and Melinda Dennis were the picture of western elegance in the Morgan Western Pleasure Adult class claiming the top ribbon.

Thirteen entries made the gate call for the Country Pleasure Limit Horse class. Dori Zandy and the expressive League Of Nations were in top form to claim the blue ribbon. Suzanne Murphy and Corsage stepped up to claim the reserve title.

Rachel Machamer looked picture perfect to claim the blue ribbon in the Saddle Seat Equitation 14-17 class aboard A Touch Of Pizzazz. Taking the red ribbon for second was Reagan Huguley aboard Merciless.

Turning in back to back rides, Rachel Machamer returned to the winner’s circle with CH Titlist Symbol in the show pleasure 14-17 class. Also looking wonderful for the reserve ribbon were Invitation Required and Marcy Scardino.

The next class to take center stage during the Wednesday morning session was the country pleasure class for the adults. Top honors in this class went to the multi-titled champion CH The Shadow Knows. Making a nice show for the reserve ribbon was the pair of Whitney Hahn and My Fair Prince.

Taking the top ribbons in the Pleasure Saddle Pony class was That Takes The Cake and Rachel Rafolski. Meredith Robbins and Titlist Entertainer claimed the red ribbon.

It was a busy morning for Rachel Machamer as she returned to the winner’s circle yet again with the perky pony Heartland Sundust in the AHHS Youth Medallion Roadster Pony class. Second in this competitive class were Heartland Painted Creation and Jeb Boyd.

Janet Sterba and Horace Taft made a super show to claim the top honors in the first section of the Three-Gaited Show Pleasure Limit Horse class. Reserve in this nine-entry class belonged to Walterway’s Just Jack and Susie Mims. The second split of this large qualifying class took the gate, and top honors in this competitive class belonged to Carboness PHF and Amy Roberts under the direction of John Whalen. Second in this eight-entry split belonged to the pair of Causin’ Commotion and Karen Mayer.

Next up were the amateurs and their Morgan Pleasure Driving horses. Right on target to claim the blue ribbon was P.D. May and On Target. Stepping up for second was HPS Cool Commotion and Sam Garwood Jr.

Rum Tum Tigger and Luanne Kilday were in top form to take the blue ribbon in the Western Country Pleasure class. Marie Gwinn and Monsignor were in grand form for second.

The Morgan Hunter Pleasure class shows off the versatility of these horses. Taking top honors on Wednesday morning in the ladies division were Melinda Davis and Warlock’s Amelia. Second in this nice class were Waseeka’s Bold Queen Anne and June A. Davis.

As always the Blue Ridge Classic has many classes for the junior exhibitors. One such class is the Hackney Pony Pleasure Driving AHHS Youth Medallion. Taking home the blue ribbon were Will Mayo and his pony Motown. Second in this class were Wonmore Diamond Legacy and Rylee Huffman.

Dancing on air and right into the winner’s circle was Music Of The Heir and Marilyn Macfarlane in the Three-Gaited Park Pleasure Open qualifier. Second in this very competitive class were Out Go The Lights and Cynthia Kueker.

WEDNESDAY EVENING

Wednesday evening sessions began with the heat as hot as the competition. Kicking of the session was the UPHA Three-Year-Old Three-Gaited Park Pleasure Classic with eight top entries. Topping the class was Susan Orton’s newest star Brookhill’s Swing King. By CH Harlem Town this high-headed chestnut was guided to the winner’s circle by Lewis Eckard. The elegant Belle Splendor captured the red ribbon with Steve Joyce in the irons for the Mary Goforth Trust.

Equitation was extremely competitive this week and the USEF Medal class was no exception with five riders competing to qualify for the finals. With excellent rail and pattern work Lindsay Haupt unanimously earned the top honor aboard Wizard’s Icon. Reserve honors went to Kristen Thomas riding Cabernet’s Will Command.

Marching through the gate next were six Amateur Fine Harness teams. CH Kalarama’s New Sensation and Mary Gise were in top form unanimously earning the trip to the winner’s circle. Garnering the red streamers was the magnificent CH Radiant Success with Rachel Seifert on the lines in their only appearance. The gentleman team of the class, Callaway’s Carnegie Hall and John Wrather, earned a strong third.

The young horses were back to the ring for their Junior Five-Gaited class. The charismatic Bono, with Bret Day presenting, earned the blue for Karen Mayer. With crowd approval I’m Something Wicked received the reserve title with Joe Elam presenting for River Dreams LLC.

The hugely popular Novice Rider Country Pleasure class entered the ring with 18 teams competing. With a solid ride and great spots on the rail El Dorado’s Majestic Heir and Jill Lowry topped the competition under the direction of Chad Graham and Julie Kaufman. Reserve honors also went back to Kentucky hanging on the Zubrod banner with a top performance from Leatherwood’s Larkspur and Lisa Vogel.

The elegant Hackney ponies were next on the schedule for their cob tail class. With extreme motion Fancy Ribbons earned the blue with Marilyn Macfarlane on the lines for Randi Wightman. Reserve honors went to Garland Presswood’s Heartland Designed with Mike Barlow presenting.

The pace changed dramatically with the speed demons of the Amateur Roadster To Bike coming in next. With his trademark green and white silks flying, Steve Deutsch guided Eclipse around on their victory lap under the watchful eye of Jon Walker. Reserve honors went to the Boone’s Farm team Westgate Villain and Mike Gordon Sr.

Things slowed down a bit in speed with the Country Pleasure Driving. The sporty Hometown Commander earned a unanimous victory with Kevin Ingram directing him all the way to the winner’s circle. Donna Smith guided Heirithmatic to the reserve title with a solid performance.

Warlock’s Fleur-De-Lis and John Goda III were the next to grace the winner’s circle with their performance in the Morgan Junior/Novice Pleasure Driving class for owners Susan and Ray Wright. Reserve honors went to Gillfree Power Play and Barbara Goda for Barbara and John Goda.

The junior exhibitors were back in the spotlight with 11 teams making the gate call. The bold moving and striking gray Catch The Moon with Cydni Simmons garnered the blue ribbon. Reserve honors went to the somewhat young team of Walterway’s Headline Material and Grace Ann Walker making it a one-two finish for DeVore Stables.

Flying through the gate, Exit 80 and Jeb Boyd were on top of their game to win the Youth Roadster To Bike under the direction of Debbie Foley. Reserve honors went back to Kentucky with Wrapped In Glory with Whitney Hahn on the lines for William Hemminger.

The magnificent Friesians were in next to wow the crowd in the open class. Earning the blue ribbon was Tessa Van De Zuiderwaan with Ashley Walker in the irons for Shady Nook Farm. Reserve honors went to Alex Nelson aboard Arend F in their second show together.

The success for DeVore Stables continued with the performance from Our Sonflower and Caroline Walker. This team captured the blue ribbon in the Five-Gaited Pony. Reserve went to the talented Ashton Hale aboard The Dreamcatcher.

Fourteen entries were listed to compete in the Junior Three-Gaited Park Pleasure. The majestic Brookhill’s King Of Kool was victorious in unanimous fashion with Andy Freseth in the irons for Karen and Guy Smith. Out All Night from the Blythewood Farms LLC program earned the red streamer with Midge Hunt presenting.

The Morgan Ladies English Pleasure was in next. Winning her first blue ribbon of the year in the Morgan world was Victoria Woodruff as she presented AFF Elusive Dream for Cynthia and Randy Flint from the La Mirage Stables. Reserve went to Antioch Blessed Hope and Marcy Vance.

The elegance continued as the amateurs brought their three-gaited horses through the gate. A thrilled Aimee Austin made the victory pass aboard her high-headed Woulda Coulda Shoulda under the direction of Mary Ann Harris. Reserve honors went to the gentleman team of CH Hayden Fox and Kevin Ingram with a first place vote.

The evening was brought to a close with the exciting Ladies Five-Gaited with eleven entries. Topping the class was the gifted It’s More Than Likely with Tracy James in the irons for Silver Brook Stables. My Teddy Bheir and Anne Judd garnered the red streamers and a first place vote with their eye-catching performance.

THURSDAY MORNING

A nice mountain breeze cooled both exhibitors and spectators alike on Thursday morning as riders, trainers and grooms prepared their mounts for competition.

The competition was hot in the Adult Saddle Seat Equitation class as two riders dueled it out to see who would be the winner. Riding with picture perfect precision to claim the unanimous top honors was Kevin Ingram on CH Hayden Fox under the expert direction of Steve Old. In top form to claim the reserve honors was Caitlin Pumpelly aboard Kentucky Keepsake.

The Walk/Trot Pleasure class was too cute and had the crowd cheering on their young favorites. Judges’ favorite and the blue ribbon winner were CSF Supreme Memories and Melissa Rosenberger. Callaway’s Sunrise Serenade and Caroline Brown picked up the reserve ribbon.

Next class through the gate was the Junior Exhibitor Country Pleasure Driving qualifier. Having a good drive for the blue ribbon were May Day Masquerade and Joseph Jansen.

Looking fabulous for the unanimous victory in the Show Pleasure Driving Youth Challenge was the pair of Cassie Rath and Just As Unique. Second in this class were Highpoint’s The King’s Son and Kayla Mears.

Looking like the picture perfect pleasure equitation rider Rachel Rafolski trotted into the winner’s circle for the Pleasure Equitation Medallion aboard That Takes The Cake. Victoria Champion turned in a super ride to claim the red ribbon atop Party Night in this eight-entry class.

The marchy little pony Black Merlin and Deborah Koning looked their best in blue for the top ribbon in the Hackney Pony Amateur qualifier. Twice as nice for the reserve ribbon were Marilyn Swimmer and Heartland Twice As Nice.

Looking like a champion, CH Social Worth and Pam Austin were in top form to take the blue in the Five-Gaited Show Pleasure Junior Exhibitor qualifier under the direction of Mary Anne Harris. Reserve in this class belonged to Believe Her and Mallory Greaves.

Morgan English pleasure for the adult amateurs was the next class through the gate on Thursday morning. Taking top honors were Sally Lawing and CN A Touch Better. Reserve honors belonged to HPS Cool Commotion and Sam Garwood.

The walk and trot 10 and under riders took center stage next and taking home the blue ribbon in this class was Brianna Meyer. Trotting up to accept the red ribbon was Allison Gann.

Next through the gate were the road ponies for their limit class. Speeding away with the blue ribbon were Kevin Ingram and Heartland Carolee under the direction of Steve Old for Delton Farms. Reserve honors in this seven pony class went to Legolas and Mark Wilson.

Championship honors in the Three-Gaited Novice Horse class belonged to the young talent of Let The Magic Begin and Heather Boodey for owner Jeanne Frazer.

Waseeka’s Bold Queen Anne and June A. Davis were in top form to claim top honors in the Adult Amateur Hunter Pleasure class. The red ribbon belonged to Spiritwood’s Misty Memory and Erica Heck.

The well-mannered Saddle and Bridle Western Pleasure horses took center stage for their class. Loping away with top honors was Highly Charmed and owner/rider Kim Newell. College Town and Christie Parker were reserve.

On fire to take home top honors in the Morgan classic pleasure saddle class for the limit horse were Outside The Fire and Melinda Davis. Zana Isakovic and Ardun’s Yankee Royal were reserve for owners Barbara and John Goda.

Euchee Matthews and Raindrops Chisum made a great ride to capture the blue in the Morgan English Pleasure Saddle Open. Reserve honors in this class belonged to CN A Touch Better and Krista Dent for Sally Lawing.

Making a striking show in the Junior Exhibitor Fine Harness ASHA Youth Challenge were Lauren Greenwald and Remember This Day. Reserve honors belonged to Allie Wellington and I’m The Real Deal.

The Hackney ponies returned to the show for their pleasure pony driving class for the limit ponies. Taking home the blue ribbon was Pam Thomas with Heartland Fireworks. Reserve honors belonged to Boxford Grand Expectation.

The American Saddlebred Hunter/Sport Horse Pleasure class was dedicated in memory of the wonderful Saddlebred Sport Horse Hurricane’s Swamp Fox by his owner Marie Gwinn. “Swampy” as he was called, had to be tragically put down in June after a bad colic. The blue ribbon in this class belonged to College Town and Allie Morgan, owned and trained by Christy Parker. Second went to What A Steel and Emma Price.

Euchee Matthews returned to the winner’s circle again, this time aboard Patchwork Legend in the Junior/Novice Morgan English Pleasure Saddle class for owner Dick Shea. The red ribbon in this class belonged to TFC Champagne Charlie and Melinda Davis for Barbara and John Goda.

The young Morgan horse riders took center stage in the Morgan 12 and Under Walk/Trot Pleasure as the last class on Thursday morning. Top honors belonged to Cassie Bell and FCF Protégé.

THURSDAY EVENING

Thursday night opened up with an excitingly competitive UPHA Pleasure Challenge Cup class with 11 entries making the gate call. Worthy of the blue ribbon in this class, and having a picture perfect pleasure equitation ride, were Katie Easton aboard Worthy’s Chicago Hope under the direction of Zubrod. Gliding into reserve was Emma Grubb aboard Glider Supreme.

The second class of the evening was the championship for the junior/novice Morgan pleasure driving horses. Top honors in this championship belonged to Gillfree Power Play and Barbara Goda. Reserve honors went to husband John Goda III and Warlock’s Fleur-De-Lis in a family one-two sweep.

The crowd favorite trotted into the winner’s circle in the Fine Harness Junior Horse class. In the buggy Mark Wilson guided Undulata’s Blue York Lady into victory for owner Patricia McCoy. Reserve honors belonged to the Chocolate Drop Kid with David Barger for owner Brenda Brewer.

Much to the delight of the crowd the Friesian horses again took the ring for their Saddle Seat Pleasure Championship on Thursday night. Dan Dries K and Cheryl Baird flowed around the ring and into championship honors. Ashley Walker and Gregor von Eichenhof Oldenburg trotted into second for Shady Nook Farm.

Junior exhibitor Jennifer Scotto and her trusty steed Spiritwood’s Misty Memory claimed the blue ribbon in the Morgan hunter pleasure class for the junior exhibitor riders.

Never putting an ear back, and having lots of fun showing, Callaway’s Blue Agate and Emily Burglass made a stunning show to claim the blue ribbon in the country pleasure qualifier for the 13 and under riders. Reserve in this competitive class belonged to Kiowa Kid and rider Mia Wilson.

Royalty In Black looked positively fabulous in the Three-Gaited Saddle Pony class. Trotting into the winner’s circle, under the direction of Lewis Eckard, young jockey Allie Wellington was all smiles. Looking like a champion and never putting an ear back, CH Sarah Katherine and Lauren Henderson stepped up into reserve.

It was time for the young horses to have another turn around the show ring. Top honors in the UPHA Three-Year-Old Five-Gaited class belonged to Alfa Bravo and Vicky Clark. Reserve in this talented class were Debbie Foley and Callaway’s Karla.

Paige Pennington and Americana’s Wings made several nice passes to impress the judges in the 13 and Under Three-Gaited qualifier. This duo claimed the top honors and flew into victory.

For the Austin family, showing Saddlebreds and Morgans is a family thing. With three daughters competing regularly one would think winning would get old. That is not the case with these people. Every win is treated as something special, and something special it was when Laura Austin was announced as the winner in the Morgan Classic Pleasure Saddle Adult class. Beaming in the winner’s circle, Austin gave her trusty mount RAM Wham Bam Precision a job well-done pat. This duo is under the direction of Mary Ann Harris. Reserve in this class belonged to Raindrop’s As Good As It Gets and Alicia Davis.

Ten entries answered the gate call for the first split of the Three-Gaited Novice Rider. Making a great show for the blue ribbon were the easy-going Highpoint’s The King’s Son and Kayla Mears. Reserve in this large class were Diamond’s First Lady and a very pleased Sam Garwood Jr. The second split of this class also had ten entries and coming out on top were Mystic Affair and proud owner Doris Marr under the direction of new trainers Paul and Betsy Boone. Reserve honors in this popular division belonged to Partagus and Hanna Norwood.

Seven youngsters and their feisty road ponies raced through the gate for the AHHA Youth Medallion Road Pony Under Saddle class. Speeding into victory were the high-stepping China Princess and Kinsey Broome for owner Dustin Denton. Reserve belonged to Power Of Attorney and Sarah Bushell.

Young prospects showed off as the Two-Year-Old Fine Harness entered the show ring. Proving yet again that he has a way with young stock, Bret Day drove Mosette around the ring to claim the top honors in this class. Another young talent, Join In The Dance, claimed the red ribbon under the direction of Chad Graham.

It was time yet again for the youngsters to take the ring. Top honors in the Three-Gaited Country Pleasure Junior Exhibitor 14-17 qualifier belonged to Phi Phalutin’ RR and Amy Hein. Riding into reserve under the direction of Tammy Devore were Cydni Simmons and When Heiry Met Sally.

Gloria Howell rode the sharp Bright Leaf’s Cannon Heir into Open Morgan Western Pleasure victory on Thursday night for owner Vickie Cannon.

Perfect as can be and never taking a bad step CH Blackberry Delight delighted the crowd as Rachel Machamer guided him gracefully into the winner’s circle in the Junior Exhibitor Three-Gaited 14-17 qualifier under the direction of Hollow Haven. The perfect pair of Soulmate and Emily Schwebke trotted easily into reserve.

The Morgan Park Harness Open blue ribbon belonged to JW Authority and Barbara Goda for Barbara and John Goda. Reserve in this class belonged to Fire Pink’s Cozette and John “Chet” Sowle for owner Beth Johnson.

Returning to the winner’s circle yet again with a talented young prospect, Bret Day guided the high-stepping Open Arms into the blue ribbons in the Fine Harness Three-Year-Old class for owner Janet Sterba. Reserve honors in this class belonged to Phantom’s Flirtation and Donnie Pyburn.

Capturing the crowd’s favor and delighting them with every gait (SA) Carlswald Prince’s Dominoe and Dr. Wendy Troyer showed off their power and racked into victory under the direction of Boone’s Farm in the Adult Amateur Five-Gaited qualifier. Reserve honors in this competitive class belonged to the high-headed Catamaran and Laurel Nelson.

FRIDAY MORNING

In the cool of Friday morning the session kicked off with the championship from the three-gaited park pleasure division. This class continues to grow in popularity as 11 entries returned to compete for the open title. Captivating the judges’ attention was Music Of The Heir. Expertly presented by Marilyn Macfarlane, this sporty chestnut returned to the winner’s circle in unanimous fashion for owner Robin Haynes. Out Go The Lights and Cynthia Kueker turned in a great ride capturing the red ribbon under the direction of Euchee Matthews.

Next in was the picture perfect Cassie Bell aboard FCF Protégé. This great team turned in another winning ride in the 12 and Under Morgan Walk and Trot Pleasure Championship.

The girls from Pine Haven Stable came back to finish one-two competing in the Hunter/Sport Horse Pleasure Championship. Earning the blue ribbon was College Town and Rachel Rafolski with Whata Steal! and Emma Price garnering the red streamers.

The young set of 12 and under riders entered the ring next competing for the ASB Walk and Trot Pleasure Championship. This is another class that continues to increase in quantity and also quality. Melissa Heres-Rosenberger is following her parents’ footsteps, proving her horsemanship talents. Paired with Judy Brown’s beloved CSF Supreme Memories, Heres-Rosenberger captured the championship title. Law Me and Holly Hein returned with a comeback ride to garner the red streamers with a first place vote under the direction of the team from Cardinal Farms.

The country pleasure driving teams returned next to vie for their championship title with 11 entries scheduled to compete. Hometown Commander and Kevin Ingram turned in another winning drive capturing the tricolor for Delton Farms. Reserve honors went to the flashy Heirithmatic with Donna Smith on the lines from Blue Willow.

It was a great morning for Cardinal Farms. In the next class the team of Kate Spade and Mia Wilson were on top of their game as they executed their gaits with flair to win the Five-Gaited Pony Championship. The Tammy Devore-trained Our Sonflower and Caroline Walker have really come together and earned the reserve title with a first place vote.

In the UPHA 14-17 Challenge Cup, Jacqueline Beck was polished as she expertly presented Pinstripe Dancer for the win under the direction of Zubrod Stables. Jennifer Roberts aboard her new teammate Hasani earned the red ribbon under the direction of John Whalen.

The Hackney ponies were in next with seven teams competing for the Hackney Pleasure Driving Pony Championship. The high-stepping Pacifico’s Standing Ovation with Bob Anderson on the lines marched into the winner’s circle with the unanimous vote of the judges. Reserve honors went to the Crumpler-trained Seamair Dear Sir and Linda Fischer for her proud daughter RoseMarie Wheeler.

The Morgans made the gate call next competing in the Junior/Novice Western Pleasure. Topping the class was Bright Leaf’s Cannon Heir and Gloria Howell for Vickie Cannon. BDM Aruba’s Destiny (CN) earned the reserve title with Melinda Dennis in the irons.

The young stars were back in the ring for the UPHA 10 and Under Walk and Trot Challenge Cup. Brianna Meyer was in top form aboard CH Attaché’s Irish Wine to unanimously win the blue ribbon for the Hollow Haven banner. Allison Gann who is one of the smallest riders out there did not let that hold her back as she confidently rode to the reserve title under the direction of Liz McBride-Jones.

The junior exhibitors remained in the spotlight as they competed in the Morgan English pleasure. The Friday Farm team of Faithfullee and Shannon Connard captured the blue with her teammate October Firedancer and Alyssa Johnson earning the red ribbon.

This show does a great job of breaking up the show pleasure division, offering classes for limit horses and novice riders. This year in addition to the limit qualifier they added a championship as well. Topping the class with the unanimous vote from the judges was the striking Horace Taft with Janet Sterba presenting. Reserve honors went to a Carolina crowd favorite Hot New Release and Taylor Shiflet.

Marching through the gate next were the Hackney ponies for the Amateur Harness Pony class. Earning the blue ribbon was Neon Deon with Lib Jones on the lines under the direction of Lisa Heres-Rosenberger. Deborah Koning expertly presented Boxford Bobbi Sox to the reserve title, earning a first place vote.

 

Driving remained a focus as the Show Pleasure Driving Championship entered the ring. The awesome team of I’m An Early Riser and Mary Lynn McMains turned in the unanimous winning drive under the direction of Marjorie Judd. Mahvalous Guy garnered the red steamers with Jeffrey Fetzer on the lines.

The Western Country Pleasure Championship made the gate call next. Luanne Kilday had a tremendously successful week and this class was no exception as she captured all three judges’ attention to win the class with her impressive Rum Tum Tigger. The flashy Monsignor and Marie Gwinn had a top ride for the reserve title.

The junior exhibitors were back in the ring competing for the top title in the Three-Gaited Pleasure Pony Championship. With a comeback ride Skyhawk’s Painted Lady and Natalie Watkins captured the tricolor under the direction of Linda Shelhart. Earning reserve and a first place vote was the Pine Haven Stables team of That Takes The Cake and Rachel Rafolski.

The junior exhibitors continued to compete, this time in the UPHA 11 and Under Challenge Cup. Cheyenne Mabey proved her skills earning the votes of all three judges in her first equitation pattern. Only a nine-year-old, Cheyenne earned the honor under the direction of the team at Cardinal Farm. Reserve honors went to Andrea Simpson aboard Merciless from Stepping Stone Farm.

The Morgans were back to compete in their Junior Exhibitor Classic Pleasure. The hard working Zana Isakovic was thrilled to win aboard Barb and John Goda’s Andun’s Yankee Royal. Reserve honors went to RRG Queen Of Hearts and Mary Emmie McQuown.

The pace changed with the speedsters of the pony world making the gate call with seven top entries in the Junior Roadster Pony. Having a tremendous show with his speed and form was Seamair Fashion Model. Mike Barlow was on the lines for new owners Suzanne and Fuzzy Mayo. Janet Crampton was in the bike presenting John Wrather’s new pony Heartland Showin’ Off. This high-stepper earned the reserve title.

Topping the competitive field of 11 teams in the Novice Rider Country Pleasure Championship was an excited Jill Lowry aboard El Dorado’s Majestic Heir. Earlier in the week this team won the qualifier but making these unanimous wins even more special was that Lowry returned to the show ring after a two-year absence. Reserve honors went to the Zubrod team of Leatherwood’s Larkspur and Lisa Vogel.

The pony classes throughout were strong this week including the Hackney Pony Championship with five great entries competing. In perfect cadence, Fancy Ribbons marched to the winner’s circle in unanimous fashion with Marilyn Macfarlane presenting for Randi Wightman. Reserve honors went to the striking, high-stepping Black Merlin with Deborah Koning on the lines for David Crockett.

In the Junior Three-Gaited Park Pleasure Championship, Brookhill’s King Of Kool added another unanimous win to his list. Andy Freseth masterfully presented this son of CH Harlem Town to the win for owners Karen and Guy Smith. Midge Hunt presented the toppy Out All Night to the red streamer for Blythewood LLC.

Sixteen entries were on the program to compete for the Novice Rider Three-Gaited Show Pleasure Championship. Earning the top honor was the flashy Mystic Affair and Doris Marr under the direction of Boones Farm. Garnering the red steamers and a first place vote were The Irish Tempest and Jessica Robb Epley from Harrison Shiflet Stables.

The session was brought to a close with the Limit Country Pleasure Championship. The sporty League Of Nations topped the competitive field with Dori Zandy in the irons making it a sweep in this division for the Cameo Stable banner. Hula Popper and Susan Hanna had a comeback ride to capture the red streamers under the direction of Lisa Heres-Rosenberger.

FRIDAY EVENING

Exhibitors braved an unusual heat for
Asheville on Friday evening, ready to show their horses and ponies. Opening up the Friday evening performance was the NHS Saddle Seat Event. Having a picture perfect pattern and precise rail work, not to mention traveling from Odessa, Fla., Kristen Thomas stepped up to claim the blue ribbon aboard Cabernet’s Will Command under the direction of Anne Judd. Reserve went to Eleanor Watkins riding Marie Claire.

Hustling into the ring and returning to the winner’s circle for the unanimous blue ribbon were Diamond Hustler and Rebekah Cloninger trained by Lewis Eckard. Making a speedy ride into reserve were High Velocity and Lindsay Greenwald.

The Morgan Classic Pleasure Driving took center stage next, and taking top honors were Whitemud Forever Sunbeam and Mike Bertolani. Driving into second were Coalition Royal Billing and owner/driver June A. Davis.

Adding another blue ribbon to the Hollow Haven banner after the Ladies Three-Gaited Championship was the new pair of Mahvalous Asset and Shannon Sewell. Reserve honors belonged to the gray mare Heir Calendar Girl and Robin Haynes.

Seven entries made the gate call for the Three-Gaited Country Pleasure Adult Championship. Returning to the winner’s circle after a qualifying win, CH The Shadow Knows and jockey Linda Meyer were thrilled with their tricolor ribbon, under the direction of Hollow Haven. Reserve honors in this competitive class belonged to the smooth moving Lion King and Rachel Seifert.

The talented Rachel Machamer returned to claim the top tricolor after a qualifying win with Heartland Sundust in the Junior Exhibitor Roadster Pony Championship. This Hollow Haven trained pony is owned by the Priscilla Gise Revocable Trust. Stepping up and jogging into reserve were Zildjian and Connor Leith, trained by Heather Boodey.

The high-stepping, expressive Reedann’s Phine By Me and Bree Zandy, under the direction of Steve Joyce, laid claim to the tricolor ribbon in the Three-Gaited Park Junior Exhibitor class, after claiming the blue in the qualifier. CH Wing’s Main Attraction and Adrienne Fitch trotted into the reserve tricolor with a very nice ride.

Krista Dent had a very busy week and Friday night was no exception. She took home the tricolor in the Morgan Hunter Pleasure Open Championship aboard Legendary And Noble. Second in this class belonged to June A. Davis and Waseeka’s Bold Queen Anne.

Royalty In Black was simply stunning to take home the tricolor ribbon in the walk/trot pony championship with jockey Allie Wellington. This Lewis Eckard-trained team won the blue in their qualifier as well. The Boone’s Farm trained team of CH Sarah Katherine and Lauren Henderson was another vivacious vision in black to claim the reserve title.

Tessa Van De Zuiderwaan and Ashley Walker returned to the winner’s circle after claiming the blue ribbon in their qualifying class in the Friesian Saddle Seat Pleasure Open Championship. Reserve honors in this class belonged to Dan Dries K and Cheryl Baird.

Faster than a speeding bullet and claiming the tricolor victory in the Amateur Road Horse To Bike Championship, victors Westgate Villain and Michael Gordon Sr. are trained by Boone’s Farm and Stables. Trotting easily into reserve were Highway 66 and Dr. John Songer.

The lofty high-headed CH Titlist Symbol and Rachel Machamer returned after winning the qualifier to claim the tricolor ribbon in the Three-Gaited Show Pleasure 14-17 Championship. CH Future Treasure and his tall jockey Victoria Woodruff were on target for the reserve championship.

The Morgan horses took center stage with their amateur riders for the English pleasure class with seven entries answering the gate call. Championship honors belonged to CN A Touch Better and Sally Lawing. Reserve honors belonged to AFF Elusive Dream and catch rider Victoria Woodruff for Randy and Cynthia Flynt.

Certainly a special pair, CH My Special Sultan and Stephanie Lockyer were in top form to claim the 13 and under championship honors in the show pleasure class. Allie Wellington had CH It’s Yabba Dabba Doo Time trotting perfect and he never put an ear back as the duo picked up the red ribbon for reserve.

Making a unanimous ride for the blue ribbon in the Amateur Park Championship, Luanne Kilday and her trusty mount CH A Step Of Time stepped up in this competitive class. This world’s champion team is trained by Debbie Foley. Also a former world’s champion, Promise To Dance and Marie Gwinn made a super show to claim the reserve championship.

Returning to victory in the Five-Gaited Show Pleasure Adult Championship, under the direction of Linda and Andy Freseth, was the pair of Hero’s Jumpin’ Jack Flash and Travis Van Zetten. Racking into second were Our Silver Charm and George Ann Nash.

Barbara Goda and JW Authority were in top form to claim the Morgan Park Harness Open Championship.

SATURDAY MORNING

Saturday morning was dedicated to the academy division and its growing talent. Winners in this section included Marcie Richard, Denise Patch, Sarah Tate, Caitlin Hucker, Hallie Tyler, McKenzie Bryant, Leigh Bishop, Ann Quick, Natalie Swimmer, Barbara Hopkins, Summer Blackwelder, Hannah Abrams, Donna Wesslen, Kayla Wilson, Paige Russell, Melissa Tuttle, Audrey Sigmon, Rose Marie Wheeler, and Kelsey Bishop.

SATURDAY EVENING

Excitement filled the air as rumors flowed about which trainers would show which horses in the Five-Gaited Stake as the Saturday night championships got underway.

Starting off the night in racetrack fashion, the roadster ponies under saddle were in top form to open up the evening. Returning to top honors in this class was the duo of China Princess and Kinsey Broome for Dustin Denton. Reserve honors in this championship belonged to Star Sweetheart and Allison Boozer.

A competitive class of eight entries made the gate call for the Pleasure Equitation Championship. Taking home the tricolor was Sally McEwen aboard Heathermoor’s Mister. Reserve ribbons went to Katie Easton on Worthy’s Chicago Hope.

Always a popular division seven entries entered the show ring for the Morgan Classic Pleasure Saddle Championship. Taking top honors is as good as it gets for any rider and absolutely thrilled with her victory Alicia Davis made her way around the ring aboard Raindrop’s As Good As It Gets. Reserve honors belonged to Laura Austin and RAM Wham Bam Precision.

Battling a tough pattern and coming out with the unanimous victory in the Saddle Seat Equitation 14-17 Championship, Jacqueline Beck was in perfect equitation form aboard Pinstripe Dancer under the direction of Zubrod. Reserve honors in this class of seven entries were Lindsay Haupt aboard Wizard’s Icon.

Having a pleasurable ride and racking away with championship honors in the Junior Exhibitor Five-Gaited Show Pleasure Championship was Mallory Greaves aboard Believe Her. The red ribbon belonged to CH Social Worth under the direction of Mary Ann Harris.

The equitation championship for the younger division of riders took center stage on Saturday night. The champion in the 13 and Under Saddle Seat Equitation Championship was Rachel Rafolski aboard the Saddlebred Rescue entry of That Takes The Cake. The reserve tricolor went to Madye Bell and Graywood’s Kera from Odessa, Fla.

Returning to the winner’s circle in the 14-17 Country Pleasure Championship for another blue ribbon were Phi Phalutin’ RR and Amy Hein. Reserve championship honors belonged to the high-headed Irish Cappuccino and Caitlin Leith under the direction of Heather Boodey.

The crowd roared and cheered in the next class for their favorite entries as the Fine Harness Open class entered the ring. The arena fell silent until the crowd favorite entered the ring when they erupted into cheers for the shiny black stud VHF The Licorice Drop Kid and Tommy Lee. Top honors in the class that night belonged to the sensational entry of CH Kalarama’s New Sensation and Mary Gise. However, the crowd gave its approval of the ebony stallion and cheered Tommy Lee out of the ring when he took reserve.

Callaway’s Blue Agate and Emily Burglass returned to the winner’s circle in the 13 and Under Country Pleasure Championship. Reserve in this 14 entry class belonged to CF Chief’s Stereotype and Erin Ohning.

The next class to answer the gate call belonged to the amateurs and their Morgan Pleasure Driving Championship. On target to take home the blue ribbon back to Atlanta, Ga., were P.D. May and On Target. Reserve honors belonged to HPS Cool Commotion and Sam Garwood Jr.

Speeding around the ring into a unanimous victory in the Open Road Horse Jackpot Stake was Page Champion and the Brad Bacon entry of Dark Side. Stepping up at the road gait for the reserve ribbon was the pair of Scruff and Deborah Koning for David Crockett.

Thrilling the crowd with his precise gaits and high head carriage, CH Blackberry Delight was on top of things in the Three-Gaited Junior Exhibitor Championship. His talented jockey Rachel Machamer guided him expertly into the unanimous victory under the direction of Linda and Andy Freseth. The red tricolor belonged to the expressive Soulmate and Emily Schwebke.

Morgan Western Pleasure Championship honors belonged to Bright Leaf’s Cannon Heir and Gloria Howell. Reserve honors in this class went to BDM Aruba’s Destiny (CN) and Melinda Dennis.

Returning to the winner’s circle in unanimous victory was the duo of
Americana’s Wings and Paige Pennington in the Junior Exhibitor Three-Gaited 13 and Under Championship.

The crowd roared their favorite on in the Five-Gaited Amateur Championship. Racking away with the unanimous tricolor victory, and much to the crowd’s delight, were (SA) Carlswald Prince’s Dominoe and Dr. Wendy Troyer under the direction of Boone’s Farm. Reserve in this championship belonged to the lofty Catamaran and Laurel Nelson.

Robin Haynes and Wait and See’s Whiz Bang took home the unanimous championship honors in the Open Harness Pony Championship. Reserve in this competitive six-entry class belonged to the high-stepping Cascade and Sharon Chrisman.

Thirteen nice entries made the gate call for the Three-Gaited Show Pleasure Adult Championship. Top honors belonged to the many-titled Cloverleaf trained pair of CH In Neon ERB and Jamie Hitchin. Reserve honors belonged to the expressive Carboness PHF and Amy Hunt Roberts under the direction of John Whalen.

Graywood’s Kera returned to the show ring after a reserve in the 13 and Under Saddle Seat Equitation Championship to win the tricolor in the Morgan Park Saddle Open Championship with William Vidler. Reserve in this class belonged to GFF Riverdance and Mallory Eldred for Barbara and John Goda.

Andy Freseth added another tricolor to his banner in the Three-Gaited Park Open Championship with His Supreme Reflection for owner’s Robert and Marilyn Gaiswinkler. Phi’s Phortune Teller and Janet Crampton took home reserve in this 12 entry championship.

Looking very jazzy and never putting an ear back, Razz-Ma-Tazz and Lewis Eckard were victorious in the Open Roadster Pony Stake for owner Karl Bridgeman. Reserve in this seven-entry class was the sharp pair of Vivacious E.F. and Harry Daughtry.

The stake for the three-gaited horses entered the ring next and coming away with the unanimous tricolor ribbon were John Walker and Joker’s Wild for owner Jan Gunn. Reserve in this class belonged to the high-headed dark bay Gypsy Diamond and Harrison Shiflet.

The last class of the night for the Morgan horses was the Open English Pleasure Championship. Top honors in this class belonged to Raindrop’s Chisum and Euchee Matthews for owner Alicia Davis. Tom Johnson and Sunny Acres Sinful were reserve in this class for owners Beverly and Richard Skovgaard.

Impressing the crowd with his amazing motion and high head carriage, not to mention a graceful trot and powerful rack, Imperiaptor and Mitch Clark were certainly the crowd favorites and the unanimous winners in the five-gaited stake. Imperiaptor is owned by Terry Mulkey. Reserve in this class belonged to Undulata’s Georgie Girl, owned by Debbie Gabbert, and trained and ridden by Debbie Foley.

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