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The Key Classic Morgan Horse Show

by Carol Fletcher


It’s finally springtime in the Pacific Northwest, at least according to the calendar, and which means it’s time for the Key Classic Morgan Horse Show. The first all Morgan show of the season is always a treat. It’s the time to catch up on all the happenings and start the new show season. 


Key Classic celebrated its 31st anniversary on May 10-13 at the Evergreen Equestrian Park in Monroe, Wash. The show enjoyed increased attendance this year, which is always good to see. Some of last year’s winners showed off their early season form, as well as some new horse and rider teams trying to unseat the old guard in the championship rounds.


The weather deteriorated as the show progressed, but the excitement inside the show ring more than made up for the falling temperature outside. The final day of the show finished with some amazing rides, which fortunately finished before the ever-present rains of the Pacific Northwest returned.


The show committee headed by Jennifer Kuhlman worked really hard to find some new ideas to make the show run smooth and with a fun atmosphere, and they succeeded. The show ran under the management of Lynn Coe with David Earehart marking the cards in all of the show ring classes, while Sonja Vracko scored the dressage competition.


As with most of the Morgan horse shows across the country the hand classes were light in numbers. Even so there were several nice horses. Show Champion Mare honors were once again awarded to the very lovely Tracemark Touch of Gold. This pretty Pot Of Gold daughter is owned by Beverly Olson and was shown by Elra Tonkin under the Fire Run Farm banner. Reserve Champion Mare was the two-year-old and Junior Champion Mare winner Crown Decorum. This stylish bay filly was owned and showed by Nancy Eidam.


The Grand Champion Gelding honors went to the handsome and showy Rendition Wake Up Call. He topped the three and four-year-old class with his “look at me” attitude shown by Forest Nealon for Amanda Eddy. The winner of the five and over gelding class, Celebrity Applause, shown by Nancy Eidam, was named Reserve Champion Gelding for the group ownership of Nancy Eidam, Scott and Karen Beyl. 


Leviticus, presented by Elra Tonkin for Fire Run Farm, starred in his show ring debut as Show Champion Stallion with an impressive performance. Reserve in the three and four-year-old, Senior and Show Champion Stallion classes was After Eight, guided by Nancy Eidam for Eleanor Reesor. Emeraude SMQ Starfire was the two-year-old winner as well as the Junior Champion Stallion with owner Tamara Mayo. 


The park division was light, but marching to win the championship and qualifier was HFM Rock My World, owned by Jim and Carole Bradford, and doing a great job in the irons was Michelle White.


Winning both the qualifier and the Open Park Harness Championship was the animated Flairetation with Forest Nealon driving for George and Glendel Campbell.  


The English pleasure division brought some great champions and new faces.  The Open English Pleasure Champion was the bold-moving Boston Big Whammy expertly ridden by Cassie Stevenson to the tricolor as well as the ladies blue for Bob and Debbie Stevenson. Cassie Stevenson also debuted with MEM Playboy to earn the Amateur English Pleasure blue and tricolor with a pair of stylish rides directed by Forest Nealon.


The junior horse division brought some nice young horses.  Grand National Champion Ultra Special Trademark enjoyed his under saddle debut with Forest Nealon in the irons for Jan Van Dusen as they dominated the field to win the Junior English Pleasure qualifier and championship. Tammy Mucklestone was aboard her very nice youngster Twenty-Two Magnum for the reserve nod. 


The Junior Exhibitor English Pleasure Champion was PWF Keep The Roses with Krystal Blundell doing a great job riding her horse to the tricolor as well as the 13 and under blues under saddle and in harness. 


One of the show stopping performances of the show that left everyone talking was that of World Champion Pondview Tres Bien. Elra Tokin, the new trainer for Fire Run, has the crowd-pleasing stallion in great order, and Kurt Rumens drove him to perfection. They also handily won the stallion and gelding qualifier. Reserve was the very nice Celebrity Applause with Nancy Eidam on the lines for Scott and Karen Beyl. 


Jan Unrein and Formalization earned a trio of trips to the winner’s circle with a pair of blue ribbons and the Amateur Pleasure Driving Championship to their credit. Jennifer Lang did a great job in her first show with her lovely Pondview Tres Bien daughter FRF Quintessa as they carried the Junior Pleasure Driving blue and tricolor back to the Fire Run Farm banner.


The hunter division was well filled and one stand out star was BMF William Tell with Natalie Langstaedtler. This big moving performer won the Hunter Pleasure Championship and the reserve amateur championship along with a pair of qualifier blues. Reserve in the Hunter Pleasure Championship was BMF X-Cellonte with Tara O’Heren for Patti Forster. 


BMF William Tell and Natalie Langstaedtler


Another standout team in the hunter division was Rum Brook Cuidado and Bethany Brill. Together they won both the Hunter Amateur and the Hunter Ladies Championships was well as the Hunter Ladies Amateur qualifier. BMF Xota and Sonja Lorenson carried the ladies blue and reserve tricolor back to Birch Meadow Farms.


Goldencrest Black Diamond enjoyed a sensational 2006 season including a reserve world championship under the direction of the late Joan Bowers, whose presence is deeply missed. This year the polished black performer looks to be a stunning contender once again for Kris and Inge Johnsen under the training talents of Forest Nealon and the riding of Jennifer McFall. They topped the Junior Hunter Pleasure Championship as well as the qualifier. Taking the reserve tricolor was the very nice up and coming Sea Cloud Casanova who topped the three-year-old class with Megan Allison for Catherine Cloud. The Junior Exhibitor Hunter Pleasure Championship and the 14-17 qualifier were won by Dream Royal Carribean with Allie Englund. Reserve was the new hunt team of Temptation Answer and Cheyenne Rumens who are already world champions from the western division for Fire Run Farm.


Goldencrest Black Diamond and Jennifer McFall


The classic pleasure division was well filled which is always nice to see. World Champion Rum Brook Immortal Mystic and Lauren Lang moved up the walk-trot ranks in style. They topped a nice field in the junior exhibitor class and then won the nice big $500 winner take all Classic Pleasure Saddle Championship.  Reserve in the championship was Whitemud Touch Of Blue with owner/rider Carol Fletcher in the irons following a blue ribbon ride in the ladies class.


Lauren Lang and Rum Brook Immortal Mystic


Gordel’s Paramount Command and George Campbell continued their winning ways and started off the season by winning the Classic Pleasure Driving Championship and the open qualifier directed by Forest Nealon. SBS In The Mood and Doug Coats earned the reserve tricolor as well as the master’s blue, competing under the Trafalgar banner.


The western pleasure division was well attended. Cabot Manifest Destiny was in top form to win the Western Pleasure Championship with Daryl Hopson riding the handsome entry of Kurt and Teri Rumens. Hopson also directed last year’s Western Pleasure World Champion Firecrest E-Ticket to the amateur blue and tricolor with owner Aimee Shriner matching up with her magnificent stallion. The very nice BMF Prime Time and Jane Norman were reserve in the competitive amateur championship.


Janet Unrein had a great week with Bellistic, winning the Ladies Western Pleasure Championship as well as the open reserve tricolor. Unrein also teamed up with her world titled Kane Creek Kamikaze for the master’s win. I’ll Make you Famous with Kasey Monty took home the ladies reserve tricolor following a trio of qualifier blues. 


There were some nice youngsters in the western pleasure division. The winner of the junior horse championship was ASF Solar Power with Lori Gajowski in the saddle for Louise Colby. Jogging down victory lane with the reserve tricolor was Kane Creek Kamikaze with Carmen Hobson for Chimera Morgans.   


The junior exhibitor championship was definitely high competition. World, national and regional champions battled it out and Meagan Harn with her Iron Forge Blues Command and their perfect performance were called out first. Reserve in the class was the new team of Elyse Brill and He’s Simply Marvelous, who has come full circle and is back home in the Northwest and under the direction of Carmen Hobson.


Meagan Harn and Iron Forge Blues Command


The equitation division had a group of great riders. Three great riders rose to the top to dominate all the equitation divisions. There were four medal classes offered.  The AMHA Dressage and AMHA Hunt Seat Medals were won by Megan Harn, The AMHA Western Seat Medal was won by Kelsie Houghtaling, and Maxi Gumprecht collected the AMHA Saddle Seat Medal. These same three great riders continued their winning form in the other equitation classes.   


In the hunt equitation division Kelsie Houghtaling topped the Hunt Seat Equitation 13 and Under.  While Maxi Gumprecht took home the blue with a great ride in the Hunt Seat Equitation 14-17. In the highly competitive Hunt Seat Equitation Championship, it was Maxi Gumprecht who rode out as champion with Meagan Harn as the reserve champion. 


The Western Seat Equitation saw Kelsie Houghtaling taking the blue in the 13 and under qualifier and Meagan Harn winning the 14-17 qualifier. It was Harn this time bringing home the tricolor for the Western Seat Equitation Championship with a stellar ride. Iris Rankin put in a great ride to capture the reserve spot. The Saddle Seat Equitation Championship was won by Maxi Gumprecht. 


The walk-trot classes at Key Classic showcased some great future riders proudly encouraged by family and friends. The Walk/Trot Hunter/English Pleasure Championship was won by Angelica Lengyel riding Affinity’s One In A Million. They make a great team and Lengyel did a great job navigating around the large class.  Sydney Hyman turned in a polished ride for the reserve spot, riding Precious M Fleet Command following the 8 and under win. In the Walk/Trot Pleasure 9-11 qualifier, taking home the blue was Rogue’s Magic Touch with Kelsey Rosgen in the irons.


Angelica Lengyel and Affinity’s One In A Million showed their versatility to win the Walk/Jog Western Pleasure qualifier and championship as well. Reserve went to the new team of Motif Command with Josh Koch. The Walk/Trot Equitation Championship saw the same competitive group with some of the same riders rising to the top. Champion was Sydney Hyman and reserve was Angelica Lengyel, both turning in great rides. Earlier in the show Sydney Hyman won the Walk/Trot Equitation 8 and under qualifier and Angelica Lengyel topped the Walk/Trot Equitation 9-11 qualifier. The Walk/Jog Equitation Championship was won by Melissa Monty with a steady ride on I’ll Make You Famous. Reserve in the class was Angelica Lengyel riding Affinity’s One In A Million after a win in the qualifier. 


Since the Key Classic falls on Mother’s Day Weekend, it is only fitting to have a Mother/Daughter Under Saddle class. This is a great and fun class for Sunday. Topping this year’s class were Teri and Cheyenne Rumens on Temptation’s Answer. The look-alike mother/daughter team put in a great ride in a great class. 


Cheyenne and Teri Rumens earned a win

 in the fun-filled Mother/Daughter class.

This concludes the highlights for the Key Classic Horse Show. Complete results can be seen and searched by clicking here.

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