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Morgans Make Headlines At Live Oak

Morgans Make Headlines At Live Oak

Since its inception in 1993, the Live Oak Combined Driving Event has become one of the premier Combined Driving Events in North America. The site of the Event is Charlotte Weber's pristine Live Oak Plantation, in Ocala, Florida spanning over 4,500 acres. This year's event was well represented by Morgans and their drivers and by the Florida Morgan Horse Association (FMHA), who with participation from the American Morgan Horse Association, sponsored “The Gulch.” The Gulch is one of the most popular hazards, which tested not only the strength and speed of the horses, but was a true test of how well a horse can react to the commands of a driver in navigating the hazard. FMHA not only had banners strung from one end of the sprawling grounds to the other, but also had a booth that greeted the spectators and introduced them to the Morgan breed. Florida Morgan Horse Association and their President Nina Spencer and Vice President Jane Brown worked nonstop to make sure everyone at this popular hazard was well fed and given a great introduction to the Morgan. Morgan owners Chuck and Carol Hudson of Shoo-fly also sponsored a hazard as did the Ocala Hilton, supporters of the FMHA. AMHA Executive Director Fred Braden was also on hand to enjoy a great weekend of promotion for the Morgan breed.

Morgans proved their prowess as they captured three of four FEI top spots - pairs, singles and ponies. Fred Merriam drove Nicholas Mercede’s Gaitwood Lightwing to finish first in the FEI Single Horse division. Lisa Singer finished first in the FEI Pairs Division driving Mimi Thorington’s chestnut geldings, Count On Me and LR Ami Bengali. Sara Schmitt was first in the FEI Single Pony division driving her High Country Doc who also had the best marathon score. Suzy Stafford was right behind them, placing second driving Beverly Lesher’s Courage To Lead who was the USEF Single Pony Champion in 2004. Shelly Temple came in sixth driving her LR Ami B-Line who also had the best Dressage score of the event.

Congratulations to all those who volunteered, participated and cheered on the Morgans. If you missed Live Oak this year, don't miss it in 2006!

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