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Raleigh Invitational Horse Show

by Shawn Frazer

RALEIGH, N.C. - The horse show season is well underway and the Raleigh Invitational Horse Show, held April 16-18, 2010, surely left its mark as being one to watch out for in the future. The beautiful grounds of the Governor James B. Hunt Jr. Horse Complex in Raleigh, N.C., housed the show for the action packed three days.

Historically the Raleigh Invitational Horse Show has been held in November, but due to a conflict with the arena Show Manager Joyce Wilson had to submit a request to the USEF for new dates. The April dates came to be and proved to be quite welcomed. Also new for this year, Raleigh Invitational was an AMHA two star rated show. In addition an Equine Roadster Cup and Equine Roadster Pony Cup show and a qualifier for the 2010 World’s Championship in Louisville was on the schedule.

Joyce Wilson put together a great team and the hospitality was full of southern charm. Brian Reimer of Turin, Ga., officiated the show. Lila Corey was the ringmaster. Peyton Hamilton kept everyone informed as announcer and Dale Stone was the organist. Wayne Murray ensured all duties of the farrier were met. Steve Wilson and Liz Holmes kept things going smoothly while managing the paddock. Steve Wilson also managed the stables. Rusty Spencer and Aubrey Pearce kept things orderly at the gate. Dr. Ginger Reagan was the veterinarian. Sandra Hall Photography captured the event and also displayed a new and improved way of viewing proofs. Professional video services were offered by Horse Videos, Inc. Delores Terry was in charge of the awards. In the office Wendy Pearce, entry secretary; Barbara Woodlief, show secretary and Show Manager Joyce Wilson kept things running smoothly.

The southern hospitality started early Thursday as barns arrived. Hot dogs, chips and drinks were available to everyone as they unloaded and settled in. Every morning a welcome breakfast was offered. Saturday night Pig Crazy Catering put out a barbecue spread for the exhibitors’ party. The vendors in the facility were abundant; Wild Horse Gifts, OHorsefeathers, Prize Ponies, Randy’s Gold Creations, Horsin’ Around Gifts, Margaret Taylor Ltd., Cross Country Tack, Gold Creations, The Murphy House, Pony Locks, St. Louis Harness and C&F Tack were there. Stony Hill Baptist Church had a bake sale where all proceeds went to help pay off the debt for their Family Life Center. A silent auction took place benefiting St. Jude where no child is denied treatment due to a family’s inability to pay. Forever Morgans were represented, spreading the word of their good will in collaborating to help save Morgan horses that are found at risk or are in troubled situations.

The ASAC Youth was quite busy. Officers met to plan for the 2010 ASAC Youth Summer Fun Horse Show due to take place August 13 and 14, 2010. Details were discussed and prize lists handed out. There was an outstanding group of 19 individuals that showed up for the junior judging hosted by the ASAC Youth. ASAC Youth also walked around with smiles and a flying pig hat to sell pigs ensuring that the pigs would fly.

Although ending up to be the only ones in the ring, Jennifer Johnson closed the show with style, riding Neil Scruggs Hibriten’s Deuces Wild to a well deserved win in the Five-Gaited Championship. The Open Five-Gaited win also went to Johnson, while Janelle D’Amato and Spot Me Five were second. The Jazzy Commander and Wish I Could Dance battled it out in the Ladies Five-Gaited division. Suzy Shiflet closed the deal and won the championship on The Jazzy Commander for owner Jade Schweickert. Shiflet rode to second in the qualifier. Pat Jenkins rode her Wish I Could Dance to reserve honors while Jenny Glennon proudly rode to the winner’s circle in the qualifier. Jesse Lynch and Pauline Johnson challenged each other in the Amateur Five-Gaited division. Lynch rode Oak Hill Academy’s Bluebonnet’s Wild Thing to the championship win and came in second in the qualifier. Johnson rode to the winner’s circle in the qualifier and reserve honors in the championship. The Junior Exhibitor Five-Gaited division fell nothing short of a crowd pleaser. Tanner Parham rode What’s Your Daddy to a championship win for Steve Myers while Patience Ergish rode her Harlem For President to reserve honors. The qualifier was reverse. Rebekah Cloninger’s Annie Duke was guided by Lewis Eckard to a well deserved first in the Junior/Novice Five-Gaited class. Mike Brannon and Ticket to Paris were second.

Denese Patch and her CH She’s An Asset took the opportunity of being in the ring alone and put on a show for the crowd, winning the championship and reserve in the Amateur Three-Gaited division. Cat Attack and Hart Of Black Magic made for an exciting Three-Gaited Park division. Trieste Felder and her Cat Attack were awarded the tricolors in the Three-Gaited Park Championship and won the Ladies Three-Gaited Park class. Janelle D’Amato rode James Gregory’s Hart Of Black Magic to blue ribbon honors in Open Three-Gaited Park and reserve honors in the championship class. Beth Hedgepeth and Grand Prize proved to be a winning combo, sweeping the Amateur/Junior Exhibitor Three-Gaited Park division. Kendra Lemay and Callaway’s Forever Young took reserve honors in both. Bringing the blue home to Jansal Saddlebreds, Janelle D’Amato aboard Rebel Sweetheart won the Junior/Novice Three-Gaited Park class.

The Roadster to Bike division was nothing short of exciting. The Dreamed and Sean Lassett sped away with top honors in the qualifier and championship. American Explorer and Neil Scruggs were reserve.

The ponies definitely got the crowd going. Harry Daughtry and Regal’s Citation LF came out on top in the Open Road Pony Championship while claiming second in the qualifier. Bo Lucas drove Outside The Lines to top honors in the qualifier and reserve honors on the championship. Amy Roberts in her eye-catching silks swept the Amateur Road Pony division with Joyanna, while Kathie Constable and Legolas took home reserve honors. Audrey Sigmon and Sweet Impression took advantage of the ring and put on a show for the crowd and won the Junior Exhibitor Road Pony Championship and the AHHS Youth Medallion Road Pony class. Jackson Byrd in the Road Pony U/S brought smiles to many when he rode Heartland’s Man Of The Hour to wins in the championship and qualifier.

Rebekah Cloninger’s Smackdown made it to the winner’s circle with Mrs. Landon Eckard driving in the championship and Megan Whitby driving in the qualifier. Brenda Rappaport and Cover Story swept the Hackney/Harness Pleasure Driving Pony division, while Zach Dillon drove Becky Rankin’s Heartland Elegant Dance to reserve honors in both.

Beverly Ashcraft drove her Callaway’s Southern Cross to winning honors in the Adult Five-Gaited Show Pleasure Championship and qualifier. Jesse Lynch and Royal Reins claimed reserve honors in the championship. Sean Lassett rode CH Callaway’s No Problem to a second place ride in the Adult Five-Gaited Show Pleasure class. Meghan Crider and Layne Norman battled it out in the Junior Exhibitor Five-Gaited Show Pleasure Championship. Crider and It’s The Rage came out on top in both, while Norman and Signed Sealed Delivered claimed reserve in both.

Nicole Immonen rode Lisa Austin’s CH CF Not Tonight Chief to the winner’s circle in the Park Pleasure Championship and the Open Park Pleasure class. The Perfect Sunset and Margaret Gardiner claimed reserve championship honors in the championship class. Midge Hunt rode Mike Felty’s I Am A Highpoint King to second place honors in the qualifier. Amanda Pongratz aboard Ray Charles was all smiles after winning the championship and qualifier in the Amateur Park Pleasure Championship. Game Of Passion and Brittany Keel came away with the reserve championship. Britt Mitchell rode Blue Rambler to a second place finish in the qualifier. Midge Hunt had a great ride on Mischief And Mayhem and walked away with the blue in the Junior/Novice Park Pleasure class. America’s Bold N Beautiful ridden by Layne Norman earned second.

Champion in the Adult Three-Gaited Show Pleasure Championship went to High Time’s Northern Storm and Beth Watson Hedgepath. Wendy Coley rode Yorktown’s Regal Image to reserve honors in the championship and the qualifier. My Jose Cuervo and Amy Roberts in their first show together earned a well-deserved first place in the Adult Three-Gaited Show Pleasure class. The winning team of I’m Simply Divine and Alexandra Ennis swept the Junior Exhibitor Three Gaited Show Pleasure 14-17 division. Lindsay Jones and Majestic’s Wingmaster moved up to claim the reserve championship spot. Second place in the qualifier went to Austin Hazelwood’s CH The Chesapeake Bay. In their first show as a team, Sage Schweickert and CH It’s Yabba Dabba Doo Time came back from second in the qualifier to win the Junior Exhibitor Three-Gaited Show Pleasure 13 & Under Championship. Hailey Mercurio and Lakeside Lulu also improved from the qualifier and earned themselves the reserve championship ribbon. Mr. Napoleon Dynomite and Sarah Martin brought first place honors back to owner Cash Lovell in the qualifier. Caroline Staples proved to be hard to beat in the Pleasure Walk/Trot 12 & Under class when she rode her Manhattan Tee Time to the winner’s circle in both classes. Chris Hawley, in his first show out of academy, came back to win reserve championships honors on his horse, Ms Betty Grable. Heir’s Intoxication and Carver Semans were second in the qualifier.

Angie Wilson and CH Future Treasure were a dynamic pair, sweeping the Novice Rider Three-Gaited Show Pleasure division and bringing home the honors to owner Myra Williams. A Revolution and Ashlin Bryan were close behind, winning reserve honors in both classes for owner Amy Johnson. Austin Hazelwood and Color Me Fox put in a strong ride and came back to win the English Pleasure Pony Championship, while Ashley Stewart and The Admiral’s Genie earned reserve honors. Stewart won the qualifier and Hazelwood was second. Wanda Hensley had the ring to herself when she drove Bailey Banks And Bodacious to the winner’s circle in both classes in the Show Pleasure Driving division.

Lisa Austin was hard to beat as she won both classes in the Adult Country Pleasure division aboard Highpoint’s Grandee. Rebecca McCann came back and won reserve honors in the championship. Bredin Rush and Making A Move were second in the qualifier. Caroline Anderson and Philosopher were the winning combination making it to the winner’s circle in both classes in the Junior Exhibitor Country Pleasure division. Kaitlin Wakefield and Calaway’s Maelstrom had a strong ride and became reserve champions. Melanie Bennett and The Sterling Connection were second in the qualifier. Cashlyn Lovell was all smiles when she exited the ring with the Junior Exhibitor Walk/Trot County Pleasure Championship ribbon on CH Holy Fruit Salad. Buckwiser and Jordan Parham gained reserve honors after winning the qualifier where Lovell was second. The AOT Country Pleasure division was won by Torre Hefner and Highpoint’s Fancy Cat. Lisa Jordan Pearce and Mountainview’s Manhattan Viscount placed second in the qualifier. Making their debut, Vanessa Patch and Madeira’s Fox swept the Novice Rider Country Pleasure division. Uva Havens rode A Black Diamond to reserve honors in both.

Lisa Jordan Pearce came back on the Mountainview’s Manahattan Viscount and won both classes in the Country Western Pleasure division.

Holly Henson rode Symbol’s Supreme Eclipse and won championship honors in the Country Hunter Pleasure Championship while versatile Mountainview’s Manhattan Viscount and Lisa Jordan Pearce gained reserve honors. The qualifier had Henson on top and Pearce winning second.

The equitation classes proved to be quite competitive. Sarah Martin won the Saddle Seat Equitation 17 & Under Championship followed by Chandler Gray and Caroline Brown. Saddle Seat Equitation 17 & Under top honors went to Caroline Brown with second place to Alexandra Ennis. Walk/Trot Saddle Seat Equitation 10 & Under Championship and Walk/Trot Saddle Seat Equitation 10 & Under top honors went to Cashlyn Lovell followed by Anna Pugh and Anna Hansil. Sarah Martin won the Pleasure Equitation Medallion and Chandler Gray claimed the second place ribbon.


Singapore and Kelly Gordon Aguilar stole the show and took advantage of having the ring to themselves to win the Park Saddle Stake.

Leah Ling was all smiles after she swept the English Pleasure Championship with Comiskey Park. Anna Beeber rode Hollybrook Wild Rose to a second place win in the English Pleasure Open class. Natalie Tetterton and Laura Whitney Austin battled it out in the English Pleasure Junior Exhibitor/Amateur division. Tetterton came out on top in both classes with Austin winning reserve honors.

Mary Daughtry and Ken Swanson put on a show for the crowd in the Pleasure Driving Championship. Daughtry claimed championship honors with Graywood’s Lennox and Swanson was reserve with CBMF Avenger. Harry Daughtry drove Greywood’s Lennox to a win in the Pleasure Driving Open class. Jason Harrell drove TSL Starcraft to the winner’s circle in the Morgan Pleasure Driving Amateur division. Ken Swanson drove Frances Pugh’s CBMF Avenger to a well-deserved win in the Pleasure Driving Junior Horse class. Lamirage You Gotta Strut and Krista Dent claimed second place.

The new rider combination of Holly Pugh Johnson and Prada battled it out in the Classic Pleasure Saddle division with June Davis and Hollybrook Walk In Tall. Johnson came out on top with Davis claiming reserve in both classes. June Davis drove Hollybrook Walk in Tall and won the Classic Pleasure Driving Open.

Lee Ann Pace rode DEF Queen Anne’s Revenge and won the Hunter Pleasure Championship and Hunter Pleasure Open for June Davis. Rob March rode Head Over Heels to second place honors in the Hunter Pleasure Open. Natalie Tetterton was all smiles after she took advantage of her time in the ring and won the Morgan Pleasure Amateur Championship and qualifier on Glorious Answer.

If your schedule did not allow for you attend the Raleigh Invitational this year, it is definitely worth considering for next.

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