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Citrus Cup Regional

Where It’s Florida for Sun and Morgans for Fun!

by Diana Davidson

NEWBERRY, Fla. - The Citrus Cup Regional Morgan Horse Show celebrated its 32nd anniversary in Newberry, Fla., on April 16-19. The Florida Morgan Horse Association slogan of "Florida for sun, Morgans for fun!" was clearly evident. Mother Nature cooperated with sunny skies and lovely spring weather, with over 100 Morgans, along with their owners, trainers and support staff came to enjoy the fun at Citrus Cup.

Citrus Cup serves as the first AMHA Regional Championship Horse Show each season, and Region 4 is one of the smaller regions in terms of numbers. However, the show committee and exhibitors are proud to carry the banner and enjoy Citrus Cup for what it is. If you come to enjoy your Morgans and the weather that Florida provides, you came to the right place.

Doug and Shane Shiflet compared notes from outside and inside the ring at Citrus Cup.

The hospitality at Citrus Cup began with coffee and pastries sponsored each day by Shoo-fly, Inc. The always-popular progressive barn party had a rock n’ roll theme as everyone made their way around the stabling area following Thursday night’s classes to enjoy the music and a myriad of gastronomic delights. A wine and cheese party courtesy of Arboria Morgans and its clients was held prior to the Citrus Cup Yearling Sweepstakes on Friday evening. Following the conclusion of Friday's daytime session, a well-attended AMHA/USEF Rules Forum was held under the direction of Jane Blue and Pat West, preceded by an FMHA meeting with President Kathleen Gatien. Everyone gathered for the show’s grand finale following the last class on Saturday night to toast the Citrus Cup champions at the afterglow breakfast in the show arena.

Citrus Cup featured many special presentations held in center ring. Tracy Bell directed an outstanding field of youngsters in the Citrus Cup Youth of the Year Contest that featured Rebecca Jones earning a trip to Oklahoma as well as a replica of the Jennifer Montgomery Perpetual Trophy as the Senior Youth of the Year with Spencer Conklin earning reserve. The junior division featured Casey Stein earning top honors followed by Chloe Hooper in reserve.

FCL Just A Miracle and Rebecca Jones drove away with the High Point Carriage Award for the third year in a row.

A quartet of high point awards were also presented on Saturday. The UVM Windfall Sport Horse Challenge Trophy was awarded to PTR Joint Venture and owner Susan Milbrath following a busy week in dressage, trail and hunter where they also earned the High Point Working Hunter Award for the fifth year in a row. Phil’s Ridge Harry Potter was awarded the reserve tricolor in the sport competition for Kathryn Clarke, while SPR Valerie’s Finale and Kelly Simpson collected reserve honors in the working hunter competition. FCL Just A Miracle and Rebecca Jones drove away with the High Point Carriage Driving Award and the C. Brad Hammond Memorial Trophy for the third year in a row with Arboria Matinee Idol and Pam Stephenson following in reserve. Tricia Waclena earned the top score for the High Point Dressage Rider Award with Linda Sewell following with the reserve championship score.

Kelly Simpson and SPR Valerie's Finale enjoyed a victorious show including the blue ribbon ride in the Ladies Hunter Pleasure.

The Citrus Cup was presented by the Florida Morgan Horse Association under the direction of President Kathleen Gatien. Alicia Davis continued her tenure of outstanding service as show chair with Glenn Winograd adding show manager to his list of titles. The list of show officials also included; show secretary Carlie Evans, USEF steward Jane Blue, announcer Jeff Hyman, photographers Shane Shiflet and Doug Shiflet, organist June Brune and ringmaster Janet Barber along with numerous other committee members and volunteers. Belle Hufferd officiated in all of the performance, equitation and in hand classes, while Kathy Daly scored the dressage division and Anne Judd judged the carriage competitors.

The highlights of the Citrus Cup Regional Morgan Horse Show follow along with complete results that can also be found on our web site at

The Citrus Cup show ring activity got off to a tricolor start on Wednesday morning with all of the stallion, mare and gelding in hand classes. The mares were first to the ring with Mary Brannon again on the lead of the grand champion as three-year-old Willowick Sister Suzie (Nemours Royal Command x Willowick On A Whim) posed for top honors following the Senior Champion Mare win for owner Kaye Bedell. Owner/breeder Debbie Ferrell enjoyed watching Grand Cru Chimay (Grand Cru Dom Perignon x Kenya) pose as the Junior Champion Mare as well as Reserve Grand Champion Mare from the yearling win with Cheri Barber on the lead. The youngsters of Gulfwind Morgans began a tricolor show with Gulfwind Jubilation (Gulfwind Sir William x Treble’s Bonnie Blue) carrying home the Reserve Junior Champion Mare honors with Margaret McKnight-Karrh.

The gelding in hand classes followed with Jason Gray on the lead of Mary Jean Bonfili’s THK Wild Adonis to capture the Grand Champion Gelding honors for the third year in a row after a blue ribbon pose in the five and over.

Margaret McKnight-Karrh was the proud owner/handler of the Grand Champion Stallion as Gulfwind Center Court (Centerpiece x Gulfwind Wild Solitaire) enjoyed center stage. The dynamic chestnut also collected the Two-Year-Old and Junior Champion Stallion victories before closing out the week with the Junior Pleasure Driving Championship as well as the two-year-old blue in his performance debut. Mary Brannon rolled the dice with Play The Odds (Essex Against All Odds x Horne’s Chinsara) and came up a winner for Saturday Ventures in the five and over as well as Senior Champion Stallion before finishing off with the Reserve Grand Champion Stallion honors.

The Friday night session featured the Citrus Cup Yearling Sweepstakes as the first competition on the schedule. Tom Johnson and Lynn Wiezycki spearheaded a renewed interest in the Yearling Sweepstakes and helped attract numerous sponsors with increased prize money along with several prizes and trophies including the Forever Spring Wild Willow Perpetual Trophy.

Cheri Barber was again on the lead of a champion as Gradells Kendra In Motion (Man In Motion x Gradells Seventh Angel) posed for the tricolor for proud owner/breeders Jerome and Shirley Modell. Gulfwind Jubilation returned to strut her stuff on Friday evening as Margaret McKnight-Karrh guided her to the reserve championship performance.

Graywoods Kera earned the distinction of being the only park saddle horse to compete at Citrus Cup. Trainer Tom Johnson began the week with the Open Park Saddle blue, while owner Madye Bell took over the reins for the amateur/junior exhibitor blue as well as the Park Saddle Championship victory pass on Saturday night.

Three-year-old Essex Play Time enjoyed her time in the show ring when she debuted to win the junior class and came back a night later to carry the Park Harness Championship back to Michael and Pat Postiglione with Mary Brannon on the lines.

The English Pleasure Championship brought the show to an exciting finish with DJE Answer To Destiny and Euchee Matthews closing out the show in tricolor fashion. They bested the four-horse field for the tricolor with a bright showing following the victory pass in the open qualifier. THK Wild Adonis and Jason Gray added more honors for Mary Jean Bonfili as they topped the limit class and finished with the reserve tricolor.

Tom Johnson directed Sunny Acres Sinful to a pair of blue ribbon performances when Erica Heck was in the irons for the Ladies English Pleasure blue, while Beverly Skovgaard earned the blue ribbon and flowers in the Ladies Pleasure Driving. Ron Reid also celebrated a pair of victory passes as he rode The Warlord to victory in the Gentlemen’s and Amateur Masters English Pleasure.

The Amateur English Pleasure Championship featured an outstanding win of the Great Oaks Ashmon Perpetual Trophy for Alicia Davis and her homebred Raindrops Chisum following a blue ribbon ride in the amateur qualifier. Kristi Buehrle matched up with Willowick Double Vision to collect the Amateur English Pleasure Reserve Championship for Paul and Nancy Jo Smith, directed by Kris Cole.

Chloe Hooper and Formal Protest enjoyed a great show including the Junior Exhibitor English Pleasure blue and tricolor along with the Citrus Cup Perpetual Trophy, directed by Tom Johnson.

Kitty Dorwart was all smiles when she and her new partner HVK Bold Monarch matched up for a pair of winning rides. They topped the Walk-Trot English Pleasure Championship as well as the qualifier with Cheri Barber directing for Mountain Ridge Farm. PJM Time Factor and Esme Yarnell earned their first of two tricolors with the reserve championship ride.

Cheri Barber introduced some bright new stars to the show ring at Citrus Cup. Following her blue ribbon saddle debut at Tampa Charity, Gradell Mystic Melissa returned to victory lane in the Four-Year-Old English Pleasure with Jerry and Shirley Modell cheering her on.

The extravagant motioned Bent Apple Northern Spy performed for the Windy Pond Perpetual Trophy in the Pleasure Driving Championship following the limit blue with Rick Davis handling the lines for Gale Domanico.

Chauncey Felker and Stonecroft Wish Me Well returned to the winner’s circle when they collected the Amateur Pleasure Driving qualifier and championship coached by Mary Jo Schmidt. Cassie Bell showed off her versatile talents at Citrus Cup including winning drives with FCF Protégé for the Junior Exhibitor Pleasure Driving blue and tricolor.

Alicia Davis enjoyed Citrus Cup victories with full brothers Raindrops Tiburon (pictured) and Raindrops Chisum.

The Adult Classic Pleasure Saddle Championship featured a memorable win of the October Dancer Perpetual Trophy for Gerry Auermann and Whispering Marquise following a victory pass in the qualifier. Alicia Davis and her sporty Raindrops Tiburon rode away with the reserve tricolor victory following the limit blue. Nichole Gooshaw and Ashdon’s Just In Command picked up the blue ribbon and flowers in the Ladies Classic Pleasure Saddle for the second year in a row.

Rebecca Watters and All Hail To The Chief teamed up for a repeat victory in the Classic Saddle Seat Equitation Championship.

Rebecca Watters was the winning rider in the Junior Exhibitor Classic Pleasure Saddle Championship for the third year in a row. This year she teamed up with Night On The Town to earn the Helen Wallace Perpetual Trophy with the entry owned by James Wallace. Karen Harry also teamed up with Night On The Town to earn a memorable blue in the limit rider class. Casey Stein enjoyed a great show including the reserve tricolors in the Junior Exhibitor Classic Pleasure Saddle and Classic Saddle Seat Equitation Championships with Grand Cru St. Emilion. Rebecca Watters and All Hail To The Chief posted a pair of stellar victories for the Classic Saddle Seat Equitation blue and tricolor.

MEM Reality Check and Chloe Hooper made four trips to the winner’s circle when they earned the Junior Exhibitor Classic Pleasure Driving blue and tricolor as well as blue ribbons in the Junior Exhibitor Classic Pleasure Saddle qualifier and Junior Exhibitor In Hand.

The Classic Pleasure Driving Championship featured Gulfwind Temptress and Mary McKnight-Cantey adding to the Gulfwind banner. They also earned matching blues in the adult and ladies qualifiers with the applause of their large cheering section. Annapolis and Megan Dunkle teamed up to carry home the Classic Pleasure Driving Reserve Championship.

Grand National Champion Bravo Zulu and Erica Dorwart teamed up for a blue ribbon debut when they added the Junior Classic Pleasure Driving blue to the Cheri Barber Stables banner for Mountain Ridge Farm.

Gulfwind Sir William and Margaret McKnight Karrh enjoyed a winning start to the season, earning the Amateur and Open Western Pleasure Championships.

The Citrus Cup Open Western Pleasure Championship featured another exciting tricolor finish for the McKnight family and Gulfwind Morgans when Gulfwind Sir William jogged away with the tricolor for an amazing fifth year in a row. Margaret McKnight-Karrh was aboard the world-titled stallion to also earn top honors in the Amateur Western Pleasure Championship and the amateur stallion/gelding qualifier. World Champion Gulfwind Wild Solitaire also enjoyed a victorious return to the show ring as she jogged away with matching blue ribbons in the ladies and amateur mare classes in addition to introducing Aidan Cantey to the winner’s circle in his memorable lead line debut.

Gradell Delightful Wishes jogged away with the Open Western Pleasure Reserve Championship with Cheri Barber, adding to an outstanding show for Jerome and Shirley Modell’s Gradell Farm. Pat West enjoyed a great show with Chase Manhattan as they carried the Amateur Western Pleasure Reserve Championship back to the Cheri Barber Stables banner following a blue ribbon performance in the amateur masters.

PTR Ms Behavin and Rick Davis jogged away with a pair of matching Citrus Cup blue ribbons.

PTR Ms Behavin and Rick Davis enjoyed a big win in the Open Western Pleasure qualifier and added the gentlemen’s blue to the banner. DRF Divine Design carried home a trio of blue ribbons as trainer Rick Gervasio and owner Vicky Eby Paar teamed up for the Pro-Am Western Pleasure victory while Paar topped the ladies amateur and Gervasio bested the limit class.

Spencer Conklin and Tara's Zeus jogged away with matching tricolors in the Junior Exhibitor Western Pleasure and Western Seat Equitation Championships.

Spencer Conklin and Tara’s Zeus had a great show when they earned two repeat tricolors as the Junior Exhibitor Western Pleasure and Western Seat Equitation Champions while also adding a pair of blues in the western seat equitation and AMHA Medal classes. Conkin showed off her winning style with TOMF All That Jazz as they earned a crowd pleasing blue in the Open Reining. Sugarlane Adonis and Brittany Simmons jogged away with the Junior Exhibitor Western Pleasure Reserve Championship, while qualifier winners Merlot and Lauren Tyner also picked up the Western Seat Equitation Reserve Championship.

Taylor Hutcheson and CBMF Commander At Arms teamed up to add the Walk-Jog Western Pleasure blue to the Willowick banner for proud grandparents Jerry and Peggy Hutcheson.

Jim Little and Stacey Champion Resler were proud of DWS Wind Dancer's Junior Western Pleasure Championship victory in his debut show.

Stacey Champion Resler enjoyed a tricolor show ring return when her handsome Three Wishes son DWS Wind Dancer debuted as the Junior Western Pleasure Champion with Cheri Barber presenting. Karen Burridge had another solid gold performer in her homebred UDM Twenty Four Carats. Rick Gervasio presented for the reserve tricolor. Rick Davis cashed in for the blue ribbon in the junior qualifier when he guided Million Dollar Baby down victory lane.

The Open Hunter Pleasure Championship featured a big win for Symphonee Wired For Sound when Valarie Siemer teamed up with the Paul and Sue Smith entry. The bold-striding chestnut started off with the qualifier win as well as a blue ribbon pose in the Hunter In Hand with Anne Winograd on the lead. Following four years in a row as the junior exhibitor champions, Monnington Soul and Channing Ligas graduated to show with the adults and they notched the Amateur Hunter Pleasure Championship and came back to collect the reserve tricolor in the open division. Kelly Simpson and SPR Valerie’s Finale carried home the blue ribbon and flowers in the Ladies Hunter Pleasure and also were named amateur reserve champions. CAUM Majority Rules and Samantha Altheide took their place in the winner’s circle in the amateur qualifier directed by Rick Davis.

I'm Irish and Taylor Ekovich teamed up to win the Prime Time Trophy when they earned the victory in the largest class of the show, the Junior Exhibitor Hunter Pleasure qualifier.

The largest and most competitive classes of the show came in the Junior Exhibitor Hunter Pleasure. The entries from West Coast Morgans had a lock on the top spots. In the qualifier, it was Lora Dunlap’s I’m Irish and Taylor Ekovich who took the victory pass that would also earn them the Prime Time Trophy. In the championship, Grand National Champion CBMF Danger Zone and Kelsey Thomas turned the tables to earn the tricolor along with the Daniel Ligas Perpetual Trophy. They also enjoyed a friendly rivalry in the Pro-Am Hunter Pleasure where Anne Winograd teamed up with I’m Irish and Taylor Ekovich for the blue ribbon, besting the trio of Danger Zone, Kelsey Thomas and Valarie Siemer.

Rachel Roth and DMMF Confident Aire successfully defended their tricolor victory from a year ago in the Walk-Trot Hunter Pleasure Championship. Qualifier winners Emilie Wells and Century LeBaron carried home the reserve tricolor and came back to earn the Walk-Trot Hunt Seat Equitation Reserve Championship as well.

Valarie Siemer guided Be My Rocky Mount to the Junior Hunter Pleasure blue and tricolor for Barbara and Anton Nesse, while Anne Winograd made the winning ride aboard the UVM Windfall son in the novice class. Laurie Faust and her handsome MLB Capo Di Capo collected the reserve honors in the junior division. PTR Wish In Time and Jamie Clarke posted the win in the Limit Hunter Pleasure in addition to a top dressage score.

Channing Ligas and Queen’s Protocol had the crowd behind them when they crossed the finish line to collect the Roadster Under Saddle blue directed by Ian Ferguson.

In addition to their wins in the performance division, Chloe Hooper and Formal Protest teamed up carry the Saddle Seat Equitation Championship as well as the qualifier blue back to the Arboria banner. Madye Bell and her new partner Cedar Creek Uproar displayed power and precision to earn the UPHA Challenge Cup and AMHA Saddle Seat Medal as well as the Saddle Seat Equitation Reserve Championship. Bell also showed off her versatility matched with Sonatina Dolce to earn the Hunt Seat Equitation qualifier and championship. Cassie Bell followed her older sister’s lead when she rode Sontina Dolce to the Walk-Trot Hunt Seat Equitation blue and tricolor, while also picking up the Walk-Trot Saddle Seat Equitation Reserve Championship with FCF Protégé. The Bell sisters are instructed by Jennifer Scotto and Tom Johnson.

Kitty Dorwart enjoyed victorious rides with three different horses at Citrus Cup. Miss Daisy was her winning mount in Walk-Trot Saddle Seat Equitation while she matched up with Hipp’s Prestige to jog away with the Walk-Jog Western Seat Equitation blue and tricolor directed by Cheri Barber. Esme Yarnell was the happy winner of the Walk-Trot Saddle Seat Equitation Championship, matched with PJM Time Factor. Mattie Rohs put on a polished performance on the rail and in the individual testing to be named Hunt Seat Equitation Reserve Champion.

Jamie Clark made bold strides toward Oklahoma when she qualified for a trio of Medal Finals, winning the AMHA Dressage Medal as well as the AMHA Hunt Seat Medals on the flat and over fences. National Champion Amber Grant had her Florida fan club cheering her on when she won the UPHA Exceptional Challenge Cup coached by Tom Johnson. Krista Koch enjoyed her turn in the winner’s circle in the Exceptional Walk-Trot cheered on by the Stirrups N Strides crew.

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