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Picture Perfect Weekend In Deerfield

DEERFIELD, N.H. - With chamber of commerce type weather the entire weekend, exhibitors at the 19th Annual Twin State American Saddlebred Association Horse Show had a glorious backdrop for showing their Saddlebreds, Hackneys, Morgans, Friesians, Arabians, Half-Arabians as well as other breeds. It is one of those grass roots type shows which attracts everything from large, public training stables to many do it you selfers.

Show manager Helen Fenton again had everything in order as exhibitors rolled into the historic fairgrounds on the weekend of June 11-13. Show secretary Mary Wahl and her ever efficient crew, along with husband Larry Wahl join Fenton in putting everything they have into making this a fun and competitive show.

They brought in a group of top officials including judges Anne Judd (Saddlebreds, Equitation, Hackney) and Todd Trushel (Morgans, Arabians, Pleasure Pony); photographer Shane Shiflet; and announcer Robb Platz.

"We were up 30 horses," said Mary Wahl. "It was a fun show this year with a lot of good classes."

She was right on both points. Twin State is a very relaxing venue with lots of informal cookouts and parties. The competition on the grills and cookers is just as keen as in the show ring.

Saddlebreds and Morgans had many competitive classes throughout their divisions, while the ponies, other than Hackney Pleasure Driving, were light this year. The future of horse shows in New England looks bright if the base of the pyramid is any indication. The walk and trot and other kids classes were full of talented young equestrians.

Looking at the show ring highlights, Robin McGahey finished off a strong week with a winning ride in the Five-Gaited Championship. Aboard the white-faced Total Reality, McGahey made the last pass for owner Katie Turpin. They had already topped the five-horse junior/novice class. Reserve in that junior/novice class, Montgomery Burns was also crowned the Five-Gaited Reserve Grand Champion. Nicholas Villa was aboard the promising three-year-old son of Periaptor for owner Clance Peterson. Winners of the open class, Darla DelTorchio and Diamond Tempo finished third in the championship.

The ever popular Oz was on the money this beautiful weekend. With owner Tim Lydon in the irons, Oz swept the amateur gaited division with two strong shows. Pushing the winners for the reserve grand champion honors were qualifying reserve champions Showcases Dream Machine and Sharon Alemian. This winning combination was prepared by Lillian Gilpin at her Rocking Horse Farm.

Competition in Saturday night’s Ladies Five-Gaited class found Perfectly Charming and Judy Candage on top of Anne Judd’s card. They were followed by the longtime team of Judy Davis and I Can Dance Too.

Over the past few years John and Elaine Gregory have put together an incredible sales barn in Vermont and have won many blue ribbons along the way with their stock. New to the Gregory Lane string, junior/novice winner No Ordinary Joe had his white legs flashing to be named the Three-Gaited Grand Champion for John Gregory. Representing High Tail Acres, Ann Rowland and A Winter’s Tale made the reserve grand champion pass. Theresa Guillemette and Starmonious were the lone team in the open class.

The other half of the Gregory team, Elaine won the Ladies Three-Gaited class with Muncika. They were followed by Dorothy Riley and The Cardiac Kid.

Lexie Quarantiello and Eastwood’s Prime Time have really put it together this season. The High Tail Acres combination started the year with a tricolor performance at the UPHA Spring Premiere and added another championship trophy from Twin State. Reserve grand champions Kansai and Ellen Kipp turned in a blue ribbon performance in the qualifier for Phoenix Stables. Prime Time was reserve in that one.

From the amateur division Paulette Brim and Extreme Rites were the big winners. Ann Rowland and A Winter’s Tale had picked up the qualifying reserve ribbon.

Team DelTorchio had a lock on the Three-Gaited Pony Championship and qualifier. In both classes it was Callaway’s Topaz and Sarah Emily Flynn on top, followed by stablemates Gitchigumi Girl and Alexis Taylor Pearson.

Back as expressive and talented as ever, CH Dance Of Love and David Arnold made two impressive shows to take the Three-Gaited Park Championship and qualifier for Brookmont Farm. The grand mare was followed by Spool’s Lady Boyle and Kristen Fields in the championship and by John Gregory and Central Park West in the open class. Spool’s Lady Boyle returned to the L.M. Turner Stables with a blue prize from the amateur qualifier.

Geralyn Dexter and Worthy Cuss moved up the ladder to win the Amateur Three-Gaited Park Championship Sally Kropp and Ms Black Ice were right in the mix for two strong reserves.

Top ribbons kept returning to the Nicholas Villa Stables only adding to the joy of being a new father. Villa had Johnny Roughcut and Melanie Bove tuned just right to win the Junior Exhibitor Three-Gaited Park Championship and qualifying class. J.C. Compagna and Talbott scored the reserve victory pass in the championship while Lisa Travers McCaughey’s Ragin’ River was reserve in the qualifier with Lexie Quarantiello providing a top ride.

Rob Turner usually has a good turn out of champions from L.M. Turner Stables and this year was no exception. Turner presented Mystery Guest for Diane Tambussi to win the Junior/Novice Three-Gaited Park class. Elaine Gregory had the reserve ride with Zinfandel & Ice.

Chit Chat Past Midnight emerged from the A-1 Three-Year-Old Park Sweepstakes as the champion with owner Heather Orkney making the winning ride. Reserve honors were awarded to Sea Blue and Kevin Tomasko for Kori Janowiec.

There was lots of talent in the road pony division it just never all came together. Courtney Cahill and Rhythm King LF were solo in the Road Pony Championship and the amateur/junior exhibitor qualifier. The open class found Twin Willow Solomon and Sheri Lampropoulos in the winner’s circle followed by Kenneth Wright and Dun-Haven Highly Impressive.

Irene York and Happy Talk were the only team competing in the long-tail division as were Romeo’s Shadow LF and Dawn DelTorchio in the cob-tail division.

Talking about a team coming on strong, Francine Roch and Twin Willow Show Boat are turning into a force in the Hackney Pleasure Driving Pony division. Trained by Rob Turner, they marched as the grand champions and qualifying winners. Showing for Dawn DelTorchio, Eryn Carter drove Model Of Excellence to reserve in both classes.

Winner of the Pony In Hand blue, Oh Happy Day was as the AHHS Youth Pleasure Driving Medallion winner with Lilly Birch at the whip. This championship combination placed ahead of Eryn Carter and Model Of Excellence.

Birch also had a lock on the Amateur Pleasure Driving Pony Championship and qualifier. Sir Love Alot BB was her entry for this division. They had formidable competition from the up and coming driver Tyler Lampropoulos and his ever trusty Lullaby who was also in foal.

In the Saddlebred pleasure ranks Arthur Aitkens and Beelzebub were tops in the Show Pleasure Driving Championship and qualifier. These grand champions represented Todd and Diane Mathieson’s The Stable and also picked up a reserve under saddle. Driving for Nancy Reed, Lisa Travies McCaughey took Bright Idea to reserve honors twice.

Amanda Wright and I Found Champagne were on the money to win Sunday morning’s Five-Gaited Pleasure Championship. The William Woods University entry racked and trotted up a storm to make the tricolor victory pass. Qualifying winner The King Of Music was the reserve grand champion with Bob Funkhouser in the irons. Raye Lynn Funkhouser turned in the winning ride from the qualifier.

There was plenty of competition in the 12-horse Adult Show Pleasure Championship in which Undulata’s Jimmy Hollywood put on a picture perfect show to take the title for Careen Dubuc and Phoenix Stables. Coming on strong this year, Sierra Sunset was a star as the reserve grand champion and qualifying winner with owner Francine Roch riding from Northgate Stables. Jo Hight and Costar’s Irish Blend were third in the large championship.

Another tricolor returned to the High Tail Acres tackroom with Sweet Steel and Sierra Gamble taking the top prize from the seven-horse Junior Exhibitor Show Pleasure Championship. They had to be good because qualifying winners I’ll Tell You What and Christopher Whynock were right there for the reserve championship.

David Arnold and Midnight Snow worked their way up the judge’s card to take the Junior Park Pleasure Championship for owner Midnight Magic LLC. Josh Noble had a good ride aboard the tasty youngster Co-Ed’s Impressive Lady to take reserve grand champion honors. They started the weekend by winning the qualifier for Judy Rice and the L.M. Turner Stables. Elaine Gregory and Rosette Barrette were red ribbon winners in the qualifier.

Livin ON A Prayer KMc and Diane Ahlin were two for two in the Novice Rider Show Pleasure division. Their closest competition came in the form of Lynn Harrington and Supremes Golden Serenade.

The young riders came out in full force with 13 in the Walk-Trot Pleasure Championship. That highly competitive tricolor was awarded to Serenity's Profit and Danielle Fletcher. They already had the 8 & under blue safely tucked away. Reserve grand champion honors were bestowed upon Melina LaBonte and Oak Crest Centennial Miss with Alexandra Percoco and Heirodynamic in third. Jennifer Shubitowski and Sarde’s Up In Smoke commanded reserve in the 9-10 qualifier, while Natasha Cote and Tia Maria did the same in the 8 & under section.

What a picture Meredith Frost and Pixel’s Ruby Tuesday made in the winner’s circle of the Pleasure Pony Championship. It was their second trip of the week. Cheyenne Murray with Meadow Pony Belmont and Lauren Sopel with Two Sizes Too Small traded reserves.

 Robin McGahey had a heck of a week and part of that success came with Adult Country Pleasure Grand Champion York Rogers. He was ridden to victory in the championship and novice rider qualifier by owner Linda Turpin. Paul Moore and Young Winston were the reserve grand champions after taking the adult qualifier. Nancy Jenks and Sensational Katherine claimed the red prize in the qualifier.

Nicholas Villa Stables came prepared with top horses in several divisions. Marisa Gillispie and CH Little Johnny Ritz swept the Junior Exhibitor Country Pleasure division including nine other teams in the championship. Kaeley Ryan and Phi’s Phancy moved up to take reserve grand champion honors. Melisa Brais and LA Kiawah were second in the first round.

The best of the ASB Country Western Pleasure competition turned out to be New Town Classic. Owned and ridden by Fabian Simon, New Town Classic defeated qualifying winners Julie Lanocha and Manhattan Medic.

Wrighthall Stables put its stamp on the Saddle Seat Equitation Championship with Rachel Crystal making the grand champion victory pass under the direction of Darlene Trento Wright. She had already won the NEHC Medal. Connor Moriarty had a grand ride for reserve grand champion honors. He qualified with a victory pass in the 15-17 qualifier. Emily Cummin was the winner of the 12-14 class.

Pleasure Equitation was highly competitive and in the end it was Maeve Tibbetts making the tricolor victory pass ahead of Christie Milbury. These riders were also first and second in the qualifier.

Speaking of competitive, New England has long been strong in the walk and trot ranks because people are teaching saddle seat lessons. Twelve riders represented several different barns for the Walk and Trot Equitation Championship which went to High Tail Acres’ Ashley Morgan Bradbury. This smooth young rider also claimed the top prize from the 9 & 10 year old qualifier and the UPHA 10 & Under Walk and Trot Challenge Cup. Giovanna Marie Leone represented Gregory Lane Stables as the reserve grand champion.

From Rocking Horse Farm, Kaitlyn Powers was a sport winning the 8 & Under Walk and Trot class ahead of Michaela Gillispie. Powers was also reserve in the UPHA 10 & Under Walk and Trot Challenge Cup.

The best of the Leadline riders was Alice Rowland in the Saddle Seat section and Olivia Bonilla in the Hunter/Western Seat division. Katharine McCaughey and Kelly Howe were the reserve winners respectively.

Open pleasure is offered in several disciplines and is a big draw for Twin State. David Arnold and the undefeated Jorrit scored the English Pleasure Championship and open class win for owners Lou and Delia Fox. Todd Perry and Phinal Waltz stepped up to the place for reserve grand champion honors. In the driving division Hamil and Nicole Byers were two time winners, followed both times by Worthy's A Lot Of Sense and Donna Tragethon.

Topping the Hunter Pleasure Championship was open class winner Specially Designed, ridden by Amanda Boutet. WSA Bacardi Gold and Ethel Nye went home with the reserve grand championship, while Nicole Morrison and Beta B Gallalee finished third in the 12-horse championship after making the blue ribbon pass in the amateur section.

Junior Exhibitor Hack was split into age group championships with The Dominus and Stacey Myers claiming the 14-17 division and Regale Gazelle with Rebecca Poirer wearing the tricolor from the young section.

The Morgan division is usually very competitive at Twin State in spite of Connecticut Morgan going on at the same time in W. Springfield, Mass. Eight entries opened the Morgan competition with their In Hand class. David Arnold and KGA's Center Stage took that blue ribbon for Linda Dzicek.

It's been a long time coming, but The Silver Brook Surprise has put it all together this spring with a series of good shows. With owner/trainer Tim Lydon in the irons, the leg-waving mare won the five-horse Morgan Park Saddle Championship and open class blue, just as they did at New Hampshire Horse and Trail. Reserve honors in both classes belonged to Mountain Laurel Sunday Memory and Corin Vallee.

What an exciting combination Queens Protocol and Pat Tataronis Orcutt made winning the eight-entry Morgan English Pleasure Championship. They were followed by Jeanne Chickering and Tara's War Dance with the reserve championship victory pass. They qualified for the championship with a blue ribbon performance in the amateur section. John Lampropoulos and The Bachelor MEM were on top in the open qualifier for the Morrison family.

The Morgan Pleasure Driving Championship was an exhibition with Sarde's Up In Smoke and Kathy Shubitowski showing for Jenny Shubitowski. Longtime Twin State exhibitors Lynda Demerritt and Winter Hill Classic Command left the ring with the Morgan Classic Pleasure Saddle Championship and qualifying blue. Maple Meadow Cisco finished the week as the reserve grand champion with Stephanie Gaarder.

Fox Ridge Crusader and Alison Peterman strolled to the winner's circle twice in the Morgan Western Pleasure division. Each time they were followed by Kelly Howe and Carlyle Covert.

What a year it has been for Tori Mattozzi and Bradvue's Sudden Impact. From Northgate Stables, this team won a championship cooler at UPHA Spring Premiere and then added the Morgan Hunter Pleasure Championship and open class at Twin State to their trophy cabinet. Lindsey Todt and MJK Afternoon Delight were the closest competition they had in both rounds.

Burkland Farm had a good show as Caleb Noble contributed to the family's winning weekend with the Morgan English/Western Junior Exhibitor Pleasure tricolor over a field of six. Reserve to the champions were Kristen Brassard and Prindles Polly Ann. Qualifying winner Hudson Bay Magic Man was third in the championship with Geena Marino.

Closing out the competition, Erica Makrys and Rowenda Razzmatazz led the way in the Morgan Junior/Novice Pleasure class in which David Arnold and KGA's Center Stage picked up the red streamers. Complete results follow or can be viewed online at

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