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Numbers Up at River Ridge

By Tiffany Gribben
Posted May 6, 2002
COLUMBUS, OH - Numbers were up and competition was deep at the Ohio State Fairgrounds for the 58th River Ridge Charity Horse Show, held April 24-27, 2002. A show that has been rumored to have been dwindling the last few years made quite the comeback with *** horses entered throughout 134 classes. Not only were numbers up, but classes held much quality.

Jimmy Robertson held the judging duties for the American Saddlebreds and Hackney Ponies, while Lynn Peeples took over the Morgan division. Temperatures took a drop and the regular, unpredictable Ohio weather kicked into high gear in what was the first show of the season for most Ohio exhibitors. Several barns traveled from Kentucky to support the spring show.

Crumpler Stables, Nelson Green Stables, Don Harris Stables, Mitch Clark Stables, and High Spirit Stables made the trek to join hands with the Ohio crowd and kick off the 2002 season with a bang.

Many divisions sported thick being the Five Gaited Amateur division. The stake held many talented entries, but only room for a few to leave with ribbons. After an intense class, five entries were asked to return to the rail for a workout as the crowd roared in approval. Superior’s Successor and Joan Hammond, Callaway’s Annie C and Laurel Nelson, Enzo and Margo Coleman, Callaway’s Rockaway and Chris Nalley, and Alluring New Yorker and Marcia Gradison each took a place on the rail in an even more intense five horse workout.

Each of the five gave it their all both ways of the ring, racking their hearts out, but in the end, Callaway’s Annie C and Laurel Nelson were the judges choice, coming off their win in the amateur mares qualifier. The pair never faltered a step and carried away the tricolor to add to the Mitch Clark Stables banner. Callaway’s Rockaway and Chris Nalley settled in for the reserve honors, with the sporty Superior’s Successor and Joan Hammond following with the yellow ribbon. Alluring New Yorker and Marcia Gradison settled in fourth, with Enzo and Margo Coleman taking the pink ribbon.

Only two entries graced the ring in the Fine Harness Grand Championship. The L’Ambiance trained entry, Tip O’ The Hat and Carrie K. Grooms elegantly swept away with the tricolor for owner, Donna Kuhbander. Pasadoble and Charlie Wilson took the reserve honors for Robert Augusta. The Three Gaited Grand Championship held several tough entries, but only one could leave with the tricolor. The infamous stud, Castle Bravo was certainly on top of his game, looking much refined from last season with the steady Mitch Clark in the irons to take home the top honors. The sporty, little, mare Caramac's Norma Rae and Steve Demjen made a great show for the reserve honors for owner, Stacey Bare.

Five entries flooded into the gate for the Five Gaited Grand Championship to vie for the tricolor. Mitch Clark earned the tricolor once again, this time with Laurel Nelson’s entry, A Song In My Heart. Clark guided the breathtaking mare through all five gaits...well, almost. The audience held their breath until she picked up her canter second way and the arena exploded in applause at her take-off. This talented mare will be one to watch this season. Night Of A Thousand Stars and John Warner took home reserve honors for Fernando’s Equine.

The Ohio based Farm, Cape Cod had a tremendous week of blues, with much emphasis on equitation. Emily Bernie and All’s Clear started the week off right with their win in the UPHA Adult Equitation Class. All’s Clear then helped Emily Garten to her win in the Saddle Seat Equitation 17 and Under Class.

The Gaker family had a lot to be proud of. Katherine Gaker and She’s My Type worked their way to their first blue as a team in the UPHA Challenge Cup Equitation 13 and Under. This talented new team will definitely be seen in the winner’s circle as the season progresses. Nelson Gaker wasn’t to be outdone by his older sister. Teaming up this season with his new mount, Wind-Blu Supreme Fantasy, Nelson rode to the Morgan Saddle Seat Equitation 17 and Under and the AMHA Saddle Seat Medal blues.

Reese Richey, former Morgan Equitation Triple Crown winner, was in the saddle of a Saddlebred for his first show of the season. Aboard his new mount, Mr. Rocke Feller, Richey rode to the Saddle Seat Equitation 14-17 win.

Anne Morgan had quite a show with her Morgans. Hylee’s Dann Right and Morgan rode to the Morgan Park Saddle Amateur title. Morgan then guided Pondview’s Forever Free to the Morgan English Pleasure Amateur Stake blue. Slowing it down a notch, Morgan and Shaker’s La Strada took home the tricolor in the Morgan Western Pleasure Championship.

The Fisher sisters kept busy, winning their share of blues to add to the Sugar Knoll banner. The bright-eyed, Summer Wonder and Kendra Fisher were right on task to win the Park Full Mane and Tail Amateur class. Kendra then rode Broadway Tune to the Three Gaited Park Pleasure Amateur blue.

Some Like It Hot and Lisa McDonald took charge in the show pleasure divisions winning both the adult qualifier and championship for Kendra Fisher. Christina O’Connell and Sky Lord rode to the top in the UPHA Pleasure Equitation, again for Fisher.

Shamrock’s Entertainer and Maribelle Grayer were unstoppable in the Five Gaited Show Pleasure for the blue.

CH Bi Mi Add Lib and Megan O’Connell received top honors in the Country Pleasure Limit class. Also in the country pleasure division, it was Arrow Of Sultan and Jessica Levy for the junior exhibitor qualifier and stake.

Lindsay Lavery with the Richlon string in tow made their first trip this spring to come out successful. Pocket Full Of Magic and Lavery made an elegant pair to win the blue in a deep Five Gaited Ladies class for Jerrilyn Demaree. Lavery then rode the sporty entry, Heir’s Heiress to the Five Gaited Open Mares win for owner, Gara Fairweather. Like father like daughter...Lonnie Lavery made an appearance in the show ring behind In The Line Of Fire for the Fine Harness Open win.

CH Token Favorite and Allen Garlick were a sight to take the tricolor in a competitive Five Gaited Show Pleasure Stake. This could very well have been one of the most competitive classes at the show.

The beautiful Longshadow’s Two To Tango with owner Jill O’Hara aboard made their first go as a team to win the Three Gaited Amateur 15.2 and Under class. Kirsten Meyers and Fritz Santana had a great ride to receive top honors in the Saddle Seat Equitation Walk/Trot 10 & Under class. Mitch Clark Stables made a well-worth trip from Kentucky into the cold north. Besides their great wins in some of the toughest classes at the show - the Five Gaited Amateur Division, the Three Gaited Grand Championship, and the Five Gaited Grand Championship, they added other blues to their banner.

Lamborghini, the reining world’s champion, and Laurel Nelson swiftly drove their way to the wins in both the Road Pony Amateur Class and the Road Pony Championship.

Catamaran and Mitch Clark were stunning to take top honors in the Five Gaited Junior Horse Class for owner Laurel Nelson.

Clearview Stables had quite a show. Black Water Surprise and Mark Milby took top honors in the Park Pleasure Driving Stake for owner, Betty Warren. Royalty In Black and Grace Ann Walker were the ones to beat in the UPHA Walk/Trot 10 and Under Class for Warren. Warren then took the lines herself behind High Point’s High Adventure in the Show Pleasure Driving Stake for the tricolor.

Lucinda Hartley beautifully rode to the UPHA Challenge Cup 14-17 win and then to the Saddle Seat Equitation Championship with Touch Of Pizazz. Jennifer Lynn Fisher and Weeping Willow were right on target for the blue in the Saddle & Bridle Pleasure Medallion.

Memory Lane Farm had a great show with several new horses. High Point’s Grandee and Jenny Taylor were right on target for the win in the Full Mane & Tail Junior Horse Class for owner, Shannon Hafer. Taylor then took the lines behind another new young face, Wicked City Woman, where she drove to the Fine Harness Three-Year-Old blue for owners Chris and Margo Coleman. The talented, Little Big Man with Taylor once again at the lines was bright-eyed to sweep the Harness Pony Open Class as well as the stake for Becky and Robbie Buhl.

Callaway’s Jess Luvon and Lisa May made their debut in the Three Gaited Junior Horse Class for the blue under the direction of Steve Demjen at Memory Lane Farm. This pair looks to have a promising season ahead.

High Spirit Farm added several blues to their banner. I’m A Fire and Mike McIntosh made a winning go in the Park Pleasure Open for owner, Maggie Gregori. The new team of Cara Clara and Leah Rexroth were a beautiful sight to take top honors in the Five Gaited Junior Exhibitor qualifier and stake. The energetic Spike Leigh and Emma Fortenbury were quite a pair to take the Show Pleasure Junior Exhibitor qualifier and stake.

Stonewall’s Magnificent Prince and Linda Sullivan were unbeatable in the Country Pleasure Adult qualifier and championship.

The L’Ambiance crew made the short trip from Dayton, OH to take home several wins. Along with their great win in the Fine Harness Grand Championship with Tip O’ The Hat, they added other blues to their banner in several divisions. The beautiful entry of Sharon and Jessica Fildes, Caught Ya Lookin with Chad Reiser in the irons, easily made away with the blue in a tough Park Pleasure Stake.

Marcy’s Asset and Ryan Stodd made a winning go in the Show Pleasure AOTR for Tina Stodd. The bright-eared, Cowboy and Stacey Thomas were right on target to win the Country Pleasure Novice Rider Class.

Nelson Green Stables, traveled from Kentucky to take home their share of blues. Callaway’s Rockaway and Chris Nalley were the ones to beat in the Five Gaited Amateur Stallion/Gelding Class. In the Three-Year-Old Five Gaited Division, it was Take Me Away and Steve Wheeler for Wildernest Farm in the winner’s circle. Harmony At Last and Cindy Maloney took top honors in the Three Gaited Limit.

The Michigan based, Tom Sworm Stables enjoyed several blues. CH Calista and Shana Jo Brown made their first go in a performance class, taking the blue in the Three Gaited Junior Exhibitor 13 and Under Division. The elegant pair then switched gears back to equitation to win the Saddle Seat Equitation 13 and Under.

The DeVore family took their share of blues. Highpoint’s Fantasia and Casey DeVore were a beautiful sight to take the tricolor in the Three Gaited Amateur Stake. The Main Man and Al DeVore were unbeatable in the Country Pleasure Driving qualifier and stake.

The Ohio High Steppers took several steps right into the winner’s circle. Mr. Jack Daniels with Beth Jones at the whip were unbeatable in the Hackney Pleasure Pony Driving Open and stake. Jones then took the lines behind Wonmore Diamond Legacy to the blue in the Harness Pony Amateur Class. D.J.’s Class Act and Connie Smith sped away with the blue in the Road Pony Open for the Ohio High Steppers.

Crumpler Stables took some blues back to Kentucky. The gorgeous, Steel In Love and Kim Crumpler were a sight to sweep away with top honors in a quality-filled Park Full Mane/Tail Open and championship for Katherine Cramer. Digni-Phi and Marilyn Swimmer were the judges choice in the Three Gaited Ladies Class.

When one was talking about Morgans, it was Grove Pointe to take home several blues. About Last Night, the beautiful and talented new entry of J.M.E. Morgans, with Tim Roesink in the irons were the ones everyone had their eyes on from the moment they hit the gate. This pair easily took the Morgan Park Saddle Open Class and championship.

RKB Sizzle and Roesink made their trips to the winner’s circle in both the Morgan English Pleasure Open and championship for owner, Rebecca Burns. Roesink then took the whip behind CBMF Simple Pleasures in the Morgan Pleasure Driving Open Class. Owner Heather Allen then took over duties to win the Morgan Pleasure Driving Junior Exhibitor Class and championship.

For the complete show story, see the prinited edition of Saddle Horse Report dated May 6, 2002.

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