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It’s Showtime In Michigan


by Pam Cusumano

East Lansing, Mich.- The awesome Michigan State Pavilion hosted the Morgan Showtime Horse Show over Memorial Day weekend. This show is in its fifth year and is growing in leaps and bounds every year. At the beginning of each evening session a class was selected from the Open and Amateur classes, and during the lineup, the name of an exhibitor was drawn to win $250. The Showtime show had many very generous sponsors. Sue, Howard and Debbie Simon offered a $500 savings award to the Saddle Seat Equitation Champion. Alan and Karen Barry sponsored the Walk/Trot Saddle Seat Pleasure Champion with a $500 savings award.

Showtime’s parties are always the best, with Friday night’s Mexican Fiesta progressive party hosted by Morgan Valley Farms, Liberty Stables, Showcase Stables, Crystal Farms, Triumph Stables and Paula Messier. The party included a DJ and many barns decorated in the Mexican theme. Saturday night Katie Mair and Sterling Training Center hosted an ice cream social. In the morning, coffee and donuts were hosted by MJMHA. All of this happened under the watchful eyes of Show Managers Maril Zbik and Martha Edwards. Terry Jones Brennan served as the judge for all of the classes. Ringmaster Robert Kleinfelder kept in close contact with announcer Dennis Rumsey to keep the classes running smooth and on time. Debbie Uecker–Keough was again asked to capture the memorable photos.

The competition was intense in many divisions and showcased the talented riders and trainers that Michigan has to offer. Show ring highlights follow. Complete results can be found by clicking on SHOW RESULTS.

The in-hand division was small on numbers but big on quality. The well-known husband and wife team of Don and Kathy Kniffen came to show off their own Dreamaker Moonshadow. This elegant bay mare won Amateur In-hand Mare, Mares 4 and Under, and was pinned Grand Champion Mare. The Kniffens’ talents don’t stop at mares. Their gelding Dreamaker Shaman took Amateur In-hand Gelding and Geldings 5 and Over. World Champion Miramax, led by David Earehart, took home Geldings 4 and Under, then the Grand Champion Gelding for his proud owners. Grand Champion Stallion was Debbie Lamay’s well-known JDS Legal Enforcer. Lamay led the stallion to the win in his qualifier as well.

Paula Messier and her powerful HDP Noble Warrior won the Park Saddle Championship in grand style.

The junior exhibitors had a ring full of fierce competitors in the English pleasure division. Jordan Cusumano had an awesome first show on her new English pleasure mare, QVM Mon Cheri. Her doe eyes and high stepping motion won this new team the Junior Exhibitor English Pleasure Championship, after winning the 14-17 qualifier. Ben Walstrom aboard his sporty gelding Stonecroft Antidote trotted away with second in the 14-17 qualifier. Both these teams are trained by Katie Mair of Sterling Training Center. Natalie Savoy and Gable’s Top Quark proudly took the reserve champion spot back to Showcase Stables.

The well-known veteran Syndicat Tiger Eye was ridden into the winner’s circle three times over the weekend by Erin Shong to take home the English Pleasure Ladies, the English Pleasure Amateur 18 and Over and the English Pleasure Amateur Championship title.

English Pleasure Senior Horse went to RH B Be A Sensation, owned and ridden by Bill Tressler. Paula Messier’s LE French Renaissance came in reserve, ridden by Mary Carlton. Later, Messier brought LE French Renaissance back into the ring to claim the English Pleasure Championship.

The picturesque pair of Annie Thurber and D-D-M Nightwind confidently trotted around the ring and right into the walk/trot winner’s circle to take first place honors in their walk/trot English pleasure qualifier and then later brought home the championship. The stylish team Boxford Unbridled Passion and Cameron Kay earned the reserve victory pass in the competitive championship class.

Hank Berns and Shaker’s Sharpes continued their winning ways with a winning performance in the Classic Pleasure Driving. A new team showed up this year in the classic pleasure driving division as Jarrett Burch drove Glenmeads Symphony perfectly to the Junior Exhibitor 17 and Under winner’s circle. This team also took the Classic Pleasure Driving Championship directed by Katie Mair.

Saturday night Martha Edwards rode RLH Striking Resemblance to the winner’s circle to win the Classic Pleasure Saddle Ladies blue ribbon to match the one won in the open qualifier. Kali Erin Hutchinson and her new partner Coalition X-Satic were undefeated at the Morgan Showtime. The team directed by Mary Carlton were rewarded with the Classic Pleasure Saddle Junior Exhibitor 17 and Under blue ribbon and the tricolor in the Classic Pleasure Saddle Championship. Nicole Cornelius and Weatherwell Sir-Prize took reserve honors in this championship.

The western pleasure division was well attended and filled with quality horses. Mary Carlton and Jan Lazar’s Highland Ridge Daniel were exquisite and proved this by the winning Western Pleasure Senior Horse and the Western Pleasure Ladies, and then they came back with a very polished ride and took the tricolors home to Crystal Farms in the Western Pleasure Championship. Marie Thomas jogged the calm and steady Tampa Bay into the winner’s circle to win the Western Pleasure Amateur 50 and Over. Later Jessica Marino and Tampa Bay won the Western Pleasure Amateur Championship. The reserve went to Briarlane Above Regala-T with Terra Zimmerman.

It was not surprising when the steady, confident team of Merriehill The Lion King and Alyssa Rumsey won the Western Pleasure Junior Exhibitor 14-17, and even though they are new to the senior division they also brought the Western Pleasure Junior Exhibitor Championship tricolors to Triumph Stables. Batton’s Maestro and Melissa Torok jogged away with reserve honors. Rebecca Peacock and her new horse, ALM

Sundance Sir Prize, proved to be a great junior exhibitor team when they won Western Pleasure 13 and Under. The absolutely adorable team of Matina’s Splendition and Jordan Seely won the Western Pleasure Youth and are trained by Mary Carlton. Dylan Boon on Tomorohawk Shandel took reserve.

While talking about absolutely adorable teams, let’s talk about Sara Heidenrich and her mount Fair Haven Federal Express. The pair are poised and polished by Mary Carlton and took the Western Pleasure Walk Trot victory pass.

Mary Carlton trotted the beautiful Bell South into the winner’s circle in a new division to take the blue in Hunter Pleasure Senior Stallions and Geldings. Belle Hufferd earned the victory, riding Emily Cook’s Silverheels Lumination in the Hunter Pleasure Senior Mares. In the Pro-Am Hunter Pleasure class, the pros rode the first way of the ring and the amateurs rode the second way as Mysticks Highlight Shylow and Jessica Kesterke won the class. Hollybrook Casanova and Pam Walters took the honors of winning the Hunter Pleasure AOTS. Mary Carlton took Shaker’s Maribeles in the Ladies Hunter Pleasure class. The mare’s elegance and brilliant extensions made her stand out and took her to the winner’s circle. Sparkling Champagne and Mark Thomas took the blue in the gentlemen’s class.

The very constant and powerful Kane Creek Oregon Reign took his rider Lauren Knupp to win the Junior Exhibitor Hunter Pleasure14-17 qualifier and the championship. A very happy Jessie Sammut and her partner NKS Vision Quest took reserve victory pass honors in the championship after winning the 13 and under qualifier. Both winning teams are trained by Katie Mair of Sterling Training Center.

Junior horse classes are always some of the best classes and this weekend was no exception. Belle Hufferd won the Hunter Pleasure Junior Horse class on Joy and Dennis Rumsey’s MEM Scan-Dal-Less and returned to earn the championship honors. Katie Mair came in second on Lynn and Steve Burch’s Cabot First Confession. In amateur ladies competition, the new team of Grand Cru Valentino and Leslie Linville brought home top honors as well as the amateur championship. In the amateur 50 and over class, Hollybrook Casanova and Pamela Walters won the blue. In the Hunter Pleasure Limit Rider, Pinecreek Playboy and Jolie Murphy won the class. S&R Something Wicked and Belle Hufferd took the novice horse class, with Laura Pecherski and Barb Bolser’s Ultra’s Free Agent coming in second.

Matina’s Splendition and Jordan Seely took the Hunter Pleasure Youth blue to Crystal Farms. Jordan Tenny and Pinecreek Oliver Twist took second and are trained by Bre Shultz, a new and talented trainer here in Michigan. The poised and polished team Asperglow’s Evolution and Myriah Martin won the walk trot championship for Morgan Valley Farms.

Sara Heidenreich and Fair Haven Federal Express won the blue ribbon in Hunt Seat Walk/Trot Equitation along with the blue in the western equitation qualifier. Marie Wallich and her well-trained Hidden Oak Clearly Chosen took the championship ribbon in Walk Trot Western Equitation while Wallich rode WWF Prudence to the western pleasure tricolor as well.

Annie Thurber and D-D-M Nightwind dominated the Walk-Trot Saddle Seat Equitation, both times winning the blue and the tricolor honors for Sterling Training Center. Cameron Kay and Boxford Unbridled Passion took reserve honors in the championship.

The AMHA Hunt Seat Medal was won by Lauren Knupp aboard Kane Creek Oregon Reign. This hard working team also took top honors in the Hunt Seat Equitation Championship later in the show. Jessie Sammut and her fancy mount NKS Vision Quest took reserve in the Hunt Seat Equitation Championship after winning the 13 and under qualifier.

The AMHA Western Seat Medal went to Alyssa Rumsey and Merriehill the Lion King. Kali Erin Hutchinson followed her on Hylee’s Fanflaire to take second place. These two riders went neck and neck in their Western Seat Equitation qualifier and championship. Alyssa Rumsey took the qualifier, however, Kali Erin Hutchinson took championship honors. Alyssa Rumsey followed with reserve champion. The 13 and under qualifier was won by Ellery Walker aboard Fairchild Skyway.

The AMHA Saddle Seat Medal went to Dylan Boon on Tomorohawk Shandel. Rachel Keidan and Wind Blue Roadmaster took second and came back as the reserve champions. In the UPHA Challenge Cup, Holly Carlton and Swanbook Masterplan took home the blue ribbon to Crystal Farms on her way to the championship victory later in the show. Lyssa Bomgaars and LCS Fancy Free took second place. This team also earned the Saddle Seat Equitation 13 and Under victory, directed by Showcase Stables. Kali Erin Hutchinson added the Classic Saddle 17 and Under blue to her winning show with Coalition X-Static.

The prestigious Morgan Hunter Seat Equitation Cup was taken by none other than Leah Soubel and Chisholm performing under the direction of Morgan Valley Farm.

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