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California Marches Into Show Season at the Diamond Jubilee

DEL MAR, Calif. - The Diamond Jubilee once again kicked off the West Coast show season in the lovely seaside enclave of Del Mar. The show, which has previously taken place in April, was moved earlier on the calendar to March 28-30 due to some facility scheduling conflicts. 2008 marked the 36th year for this show and the second that has featured American Saddlebreds and Hackney Ponies and open to all breeds pleasure and carriage classes in addition to a full Morgan division. As the Diamond Jubilee broadened its spectrum, the move was well received by all in attendance.

The Del Mar Fairgrounds welcomed exhibitors for the weekend competition with stables from throughout California vying for top honors along with faithful exhibitors from Colorado’s The River’s Edge and Nevada’s B. J. Schafer Training Center. While storms were predominating the weather throughout the rest of the country, the weekend weather in Del Mar was picture-perfect with mostly sunny skies, pleasant temperatures and a light ocean breeze. With a fabulous facility, great weather and a nice schedule of classes, Diamond Jubilee has a lot to offer horse show exhibitors.

Diamond Jubilee is fortunate to have some energetic volunteers who do a fine job with class sponsorships, show activities and careful budgeting in order to keep the show financially sound. Many small shows are not so fortunate. It is crucial that trainers and exhibitors support the smaller shows, as many in attendance at Diamond Jubilee do each year.

Diamond Jubilee featured many ways in which to celebrate the start of show season including parties and special events. Exhibitors were welcomed with a pizza party sponsored by America’s Finest Morgan Youth Club on Thursday prior to the show's Friday morning start. The stabling area at Miller Equestrian was also the site of a non-progressive progressive barn party hosted by many of the stables between Friday's afternoon and evening sessions. Young exhibitors got the chance to have some added fun in Saturday's stick horse class organized by Taylor Sams. The Saturday evening session featured a fun-filled chuck-a-duck contest hosted by the MHCSDC Youth Club. George Arnold served as host for coffee and donuts sponsored by EMO Insurance Agency each morning throughout the barns and ringside, as bids were being taken ringside on silent auction items organized by Linda Yule.

This year’s Diamond Jubilee was again presented by the Morgan Horse Club of San Diego County. The Diamond Jubilee was held for the benefit of the REINS Therapeutic Riding Horsemanship Program that serves disabled children and adults from the San Diego, Orange and Riverside counties. Ann Miller served this year as chairman of the hardworking show committee. The list of show officials included Show Manager Mary K. Hartman, Show Secretary Beverly Hurst, Barn Manager Alice Phillips, paddock manager Adele Maurer, ringmaster Tracy Donaldson, USEF Steward Charles Brooker, farrier Monte Rhea, announcer Dave Kalb and photographer Howard Schatzberg.

Cheryl Manahan and Rick Davis shared the judging duties at this year’s show. The Diamond Jubilee also remained a popular spot as it hosted the AMHA Judging School for the eighth time with numerous current judges and applicants joining the group headed by Cindy Mugnier and Larry Bolen.

A pared down grouping of Morgan in hand classes got the show underway in tail-flagging fashion. Grand National Champion Whispering Masqued Man enjoyed a repeat performance for owner Deborah Phelan as Bob Kellert guided the Stonecroft Masquerade son to the Grand Champion Gelding honors for the second year in a row. Alibi Yell It Out and Audrey Mangan posed for the reserve honors and also topped the amateur in hand.

The Grand Champion Mare honors went back to the Miller Equestrian banner with two and under winner She’s Isadora. Darcey Attig guided WCS Holiday Falon to the reserve tricolor. Mantic Maverick posed with the Most Classic Morgan blue guided by Mary Luedtke.

Queen’s Johnny Angel enjoyed a tricolor return to Del Mar when he starred as the Grand Champion Stallion for the third year in a row. Bob Kellert directed Monty Kugeler’s sporty Futurity French Command son to the tricolor following the three and over qualifier blue. Baccarat’s Visionary enjoyed a tricolor debut for new owner Merin Maggi as the reserve champion. Frank Miller continued a busy morning when he presented GMH Jumping Jack Flash to the two and under blue.

The Park Saddle Championship was the final Morgan class of the show and Mantic Boogie Belle trotted away with tricolor for the second year in a row with Heather Luedtke making this year’s winning ride. Following a winning team debut in 2007, DMH Back In Black and Kathleen Kabel started off 2008 with a stellar ride to garner the Amateur Park Saddle blue in their only performance of the show. The Junior Park Saddle featured a blue ribbon debut for Lucky As Me as Toreva Calland directed the son of CCR’s Outrajus Corajus and Noblesse to the winner’s circle for Gerry Rushton.

Boxford Bravura strutted his stuff with a pair of repeat victories. Elaine Olsen debuted with the athletic bay for the Park Harness tricolor, while Stacy Hennessy handled the lines in the qualifier. Lookaway’s High Roller was a dynamic presence while Bob Kellert guided him to the reserve honors for Deborah Phelan.

Deborah Phelan and her grand gelding No Doubt starred on victory lane for the third time in as many years when they captured the Open English Pleasure Championship following the ladies qualifier blue. Emma Elliott teamed up with her new partner Robert E. Lee to collect the reserve tricolor under the Rushton Stables banner.

Merin Maggi stepped up to the challenge of the amateur division with her new mount Baccarat’s Visionary with a tricolor ride in the Amateur English Pleasure Championship. Debra Hurst Walters and Man In Command matched up for a pair of bold rides to best an outstanding field in the amateur qualifier and add the reserve tricolor to The River’s Edge banner.

TE Ammunition and Delaney Weed enjoyed a blue ribbon season debut directed by Stacy Hennessy.

The theme of new teams continued when Rachel Miller and French Kristoph earned the Junior Exhibitor English Pleasure Championship as well as the 14-17 blue for Susan Carlino. They were followed in both classes by the sleek RWF Miss Saigon and Katherine Cota, who also enjoyed a big win in the Scholar’s Pleasure Jackpot. Delaney Weed and TE Ammunition turned in a confident ride to carry the Junior Exhibitor English Pleasure 13 and Under blue back to the Rushton Stables banner for Kim and Glenn Weed.

The get of CCR’s Outrajus Corajus enjoyed a winning start to the show season as Rushton Stables guided Take Me Higher to the Novice English Pleasure blue in his saddle debut for the Underground Partnership, while Glory Days starred in the Junior English Pleasure and Junior Pleasure Driving classes for Susan McCollough.

Alleswell On Broadway earned a pair of matching blues in the three-year-old pleasure division with owner Caprice Zoumaras in the saddle and Frank Miller on the lines.

TRE Master Of Disguise made his presence known when Bob Kellert guided Deborah Phelan’s majestic stallion to the Pleasure Driving blue and tricolor. Jamie Miller enjoyed her show ring return on the lines of MFM Daydreams to collect the reserve honors.

Elaine Olsen and Stonecroft Notorious turned in a pair of stellar drives to earn the Amateur Pleasure Driving blue and tricolor under the Rushton Stables banner. Cindy Vogels enjoyed her show ring return on the lines of her elegant new mare Highover To The Nines when they carried the ladies blue back to The River’s Edge banner as well as the amateur reserve tricolor.

Monty Kugeler was all smiles when she rode AMHF Missiplicity to a blue ribbon debut in the hunter pleasure division.

The Novice Pleasure Driving was the largest class of the division and Dragonsmeade Courante starred as the blue ribbon winner in his debut show for Monty Kugeler with Bob Kellert directing.

Frank Miller had Haute Flash all warmed up for her performance debut as she trotted away with the Two-Year-Old Pleasure Driving blue and tricolor.

Alison Bendele and MEM No Inhabitions had the crowd behind them when they blazed a winning path in the Del Mar ring as they carried the Roadster To Bike blue and tricolor as well as the Roadster Under Saddle top honors back to The River’s Edge.

The Classic Pleasure Saddle Championship featured a tricolor celebration for VVM Litigator when he won the tricolor for an amazing sixth consecutive year. This time, his current partner Cheyenne Banks-Diaz enjoyed the tricolor ride that followed wins earlier in the open and junior exhibitor qualifiers cheered on by proud grandparents Bob and Vita Banks. Lila Tatar was beaming when she stepped up from the walk-trot ranks to match up with VVM Mark My Words for the reserve tricolor directed by Glynis Snowden.

Layla and Laura Dorwart teamed up for an elegant presentation to earn the Ladies Classic Pleasure Saddle victory. A pair of classic blues went back to the Miller Equestrian banner when Bridgette Doig and Romance Of Monarch bested the large novice horse/rider class, while Back In A Flash and Caprice Zoumaras topped the junior class.

Tayler Walters enjoyed a great show in her hometown including a big win in the Classic Pleasure Driving Championship with MLF Caliente. They also topped the junior exhibitor class under the direction of Anne Speck. Deborah Phelan and Whispering Masqued Man drove away with the reserve tricolor following the novice win after Maretta Kennedy made the winning drive in the open qualifier. Mari Sanderson introduced her handsome CCR’s Outrajus Corajus son Highlander Give Me Liberty to the winner’s circle in the junior class.

The western pleasure division featured some of the West Coast’s top winning entries as well as some promising new competitors. There was a new designer look starring on victory lane when Garn Walker introduced the Mizrahi son Faragamo as the Open Western Pleasure Champion. Terri Sturm cheered on her handsome stallion to the senior and novice blues as well. It was a tricolor sweep for the entries of Garn Walker Stable when Cabot French Lieutenant jogged away with the reserve tricolor for PlayMor Farm. Sarah Hall was in the saddle in the championship as well as the stallion/gelding victory pass, while Garn Walker made the wining ride with French Lieutenant in the open qualifier.

Ellen McCook celebrated her tricolor victory aboard VVM Aleesa with grandson Ryan.

VVM Aleesa and Ellen McCook enjoyed a stellar season debut as they jogged away with the Amateur Western Pleasure blue and tricolor under the Sterling Hills banner. The mares blue also went back to Sterling Hills with Fashion Statement and Tina Strickler making the winning pass for Ardis Taschner. Park Place Bonaparte and Jennifer Grimes topped an outstanding field in the ladies class, while owner Kathy Gomer was in the saddle for reserve honors in the amateur division.

Savannah Sturm and Festival Atomic Energy enjoyed a great show when they jogged away with dual tricolors in the Junior Exhibitor Western Pleasure and Western Seat Equitation Championships as well as a trio of qualifier blues.

Heather Luedtke directed Dragonsmeade Adagio to the Junior Western Pleasure Championship.

The young horse competition saw Dragonsmeade Adagio and Heather Luedtke collect the tricolor for Jill and Malcolm Smith as they traded places with qualifier winner Hot Corner Marquis with Jennifer Grimes presenting. Ann Miller directed the elegant Deer Creek Crystal to the first year green win, while Blacksaddle Golden Jewel and Laura Thornton collected the maiden blue.

Whispering Incognito stepped up to the open division in bold style as Jill Yerger guided the Georgia Lund entry to the Open Hunter Pleasure Championship and the stallion/gelding blue. Sarah Hall and GW Devil In Disguise matched up for an elegant picture with the reserve tricolor following the novice win under the Garn Walker Stable banner.

Debbie Keough and her pretty R-Royale Prophecy came through with a repeat victory in the Amateur Hunter Pleasure Championship following blue ribbon rides in the ladies and mare classes. Allison Smallridge and Talamar Enstarment teamed up for the Amateur Hunter Pleasure Reserve Championship following a polished victory in the amateur qualifier.

The Junior Exhibitor Hunter Pleasure Championship featured a repeat performance for Lauren Gorfinkle and Talk Of The Town LPS. They also topped the Hunt Seat Equitation Championship and a pair of 14-17 qualifiers. Julie Folksman and JJSKS Keeps Shamrock were reserve in both championships while they earned a pair of qualifier blues as well.

Following two winning seasons in the western pleasure division from coast to coast, AMHF Missiplicity and owner Monty Kugeler made a winning transition to the hunter pleasure division when they earned matching blues in the maiden and limit classes.

Caprice Zoumaras matched up with GMH Flashy Locomotion for the first year green win for Ted and Eutha Giesick. Triton Metropoliton and Heidi Torres earned the Junior Hunter Pleasure Championship while qualifier winner UVM Mercedes collected the reserve tricolor with Alexandra Argon in the irons.

The Saddle Seat Equitation Championship featured some outstanding competition. World and national champion Jacqueline Beck enjoyed a pair of precise victories paired with Mo’ Motion to earn the tricolor as well as the open qualifier blue for the second year in a row, coached by Anne Speck. It was a special moment as Beck was awarded the Corrigan Family Perpetual Trophy by Beck’s close friend and fellow world champion from Rancho Del Mar, Ariana Corrigan, and her mother, Jane. It was a tricolor sweep for the Rancho Del Mar riders as Tayler Walters and Stonecroft Make A Wish collected the reserve tricolor following matching blues in the AMHA Saddle Seat Medal and Morgan Saddle Seat Equitation 13 and Under.

Angie Berning and Heir Rifle teamed up for a memorable Diamond Jubilee victory pass.

The UPHA Challenge Cup featured Taylor Sams making a winning catch-ride aboard MLF Caliente to add to the Rancho Del Mar banner. Angie Berning celebrated a trip down victory lane in the Novice Saddle Seat Equitation as she matched up with Heir Rifle coached by Anne Speck.

Brooke Yule showed her versatility when she made victory passes in the Morgan Saddle Seat Equitation 14-17 as well as Novice Western Seat Equitation coached by Ann Miller. Abigail Jacobi enjoyed a winning West Coast debut when she earned matching blue ribbons in the AMHA Hunt Seat Medal as well as the 13 and under.

The walk-trot competition was outstanding throughout with large and competitive classes. Allison Gann matched up with Gypsy’s I’m Your Man to collect the equitation blue and tricolor coached by Liz Bolton. Savanna Marie Miller earned the reserve equitation tricolor and came back to top the saddle seat pleasure qualifier with GMH Flash Dance who earlier won a blue with Ann Miller for Ted and Eutha Giesick.

Shaunicy Sturm gave her new mare, Willowick Mafia Princess, a big kiss as her family congratulated them on their tricolor ride.

It was Natalie Robinson and Dawn Juan GAF who closed out the show with top billing in the Walk-Trot Pleasure Championship to the delight of Bradley’s Stables and the Rancho Del Mar group. No one was more excited than Shaunicy Sturm when she earned the reserve tricolor aboard her new mare Willowick Mafia Princess with trainer B.J. Shafer guiding them down victory lane. RJ Celebrate and Alexandra Lerner represented the hunter division with a walk-trot pleasure blue as well.

The grand finale of the 2008 Diamond Jubilee was the Five-Gaited Stake where Linda Nicholas beamed the winning smile aboard Yahooligan for the second year in a row, following their qualifier blue directed by Liz Bolton. Nicholas also cheered on her handsome Wee Pee’s Meadows with Liz Bolton in the irons for the Three-Gaited Park Stake win.

Brookhills Periday and Jim Cherry starred on victory lane in their lone Diamond Jubilee performance.

Following a pair of stellar victories at Carousel Charity, Brookhills Periday and Jim Cherry gave one crowd-pleasing performance at Diamond Jubilee in the Three-Gaited Park qualifier for Zazen Ranch.

The new training duo of Eric Antman and Austin Eversman enjoyed a victorious debut at Diamond Jubilee as Eversman guided Callaway’s Preservation to the Fine Harness qualifier and stake for Jill Halper. Nadia Comaneci put on two bright performances with Frank Miller for the reserve honors for Ray Murphy.

CH Sprinkles and Michele Macfarlane gave the audience plenty to cheer about in their victorious performances at Diamond Jubilee.

World’s Champion CH Sprinkles lit up the show ring with her presence and athleticism when Michele Macfarlane guided her to the ASB Five-Gaited Pleasure qualifier and stake victories. All Show and Samantha Lyttle performed for the reserve honors to add to the Rancho Del Mar banner.

It was another tricolor sweep for Rancho Del Mar in the ASB Three-Gaited Pleasure as Ina Brown and Mackenzie Lyttle matched up for the top honors in the qualifier and stake for Dian and Ronnie McNab. Scott Robinson and Callaway’s Glory Glory put on two fine shows for the reserve honors for Bradley’s Stables LLC.

Ruler Of The Roost and Suzanne Fedrico ruled in the ASB Country Pleasure division as they earned dual victory passes in the qualifier and stake for the second year in a row.

Michele Macfarlane brought a troop of top entries to Diamond Jubilee as she guided the dynamic Sunlight And Shadows to a quartet of victory passes in the Country Pleasure Driving and Country Western Pleasure qualifiers and stakes. Don Trunk was on the lines of Flurry for the reserve tricolor in the driving stake, while Samantha Lyttle guided CH Like Thunder to the reserve honors in the western stake.

It was another tricolor sweep for Rancho Del Mar in the Opportunity Open English Pleasure Stake as Mountainview’s Crown Prince and Toni Nickell earned their second victory pass of the show. Susie Robinson and Dawn Juan GAF teamed up to carry the reserve honors home for Bradley’s Stables LLC.

The Carriage Driving competition featured a pair of top winning Morgans as Mary Scronce and Intrepid Sabrina earned the tricolor as well as the working blue, while World Champion LCS Ice Princess and Pat Gesler were the reserve champions following matching blues in the reinsmanship and timed cones classes.

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