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Sun, Fun and Horse Show – A Great Combination!


by Diana Davidson and Katherine Hansil


TAMPA, Fla. - The Tampa Charity Horse Show was held at the Florida State Fairgrounds March 6 through 10. However, the second week on the sunshine circuit began a day early at the home of Mary Jo and Richard Schmidt. The Schmidts opened their house for great hospitality and food for those who stayed over between weeks or arrived early to show. On Tuesday morning the Tampa Charity Golf Tournament was held at the Hunter’s Green Country Club. The show, known for its hospitality not only before the show but during, also had a great progressive barn party on Thursday and an exhibitors’ party Friday sponsored by Pixie Dust & Steel


Becky Buffington managed the show and with her awesome staff of Cris Gard, Jane McIver, Beth Snider, Scott Snider, Don Baker, Peter Fenton and Jim Reynolds they made sure everything ran smoothly in their respective roles. Merrill Murray was on hand to mark the cards for the all performance and equitation while Desiree Clauson handled the academy judging. Howie Schatzberg stayed to capture the winning moments for the second week and Dale Stone made the trip in to set it all to a tune.




Downtown Strutter turned in two awesome performances to sweep the open five-gaited division. Jenny Taylor piloted him through his gaits to the winner’s circle for Patricia Treiber. Worthy’s American Society made his second appearance of the season the jackpot championship to earn the reserve title for owner Cheryl Sotrop. This week Maria Gilman presented this handsome horse. Reserve in the open qualifier went to Kenora and Chris-Mart Peypers for Sydney Middendorf.


He’s Real Good and Mary Jane Curtis decided to stick around for the second week and it was a good decision as they racked into the winner’s circle twice winning the amateur championship and ladies qualifier. Reserve championship honors went to the amateur qualifying winner Dollar For Dollar and Lisa May. Earning reserve in the ladies class was Sun Time’s Commander with Trisha Long.


CH Tigerlee was magnificent in his only appearance of the week with Ali DeGray to win the junior exhibitor qualifier. Essence Of Heaven and Maria Gilman returned this week to garner the blue in the Denver/Novice Five-Gaited class. Reserve honors went to the new team of Just Marvelous and Mia Wilson.




Maria Gilman was back to the winner’s circle with the toppy Detached for Susan Harris. This talented horse won not only the open championship but the ladies qualifier as well. Reserves in the championship and ladies qualifier were earned by CH Caramac’s Norma Rae and Stacey Bare.


The elegant team of Sir Andrew and Margo Coleman captured both amateur titles under the Memory Lane banner. Reserve in both classes went to the new team of Smoke Gets In Your Eyes and Betty Valenti.


Three-Gaited Park


Ah What A Night and David Chretien added two more titles to their list as they swept the open park division for the second week in a row for owners Shirley Giraudo and Val Johnson. Earning reserve with two nice performances was Forty-Two Karats and Mary Jo Schmidt, presenting for True Blue Saddlebreds.


Elegant Mandarin and Paula Frenette also picked up where they left off last week, in the winner’s circle. This high-headed chestnut swept the amateur division under the Hawkewood banner. Reserve in both classes went to I Share The Secret and Mary Anne Jones. This team is trained by Cathy and Wayne Hackney at Jones’s Bluff Creek Stables.


Ali DeGray made it back to the winner’s circle in the junior exhibitor division with her high-stepping Callaway’s Tobar. With two great performances this team received both the championship and qualifying title. Reserve in the championship went to Starsnip Enterprise and Marissa Gillispie presenting for Tamarra Mitchell. In the qualifier Mia Wilson rode A Perfect Affair to the reserve title for Christy Parker but returned in the championship and threw a shoe that could not be replaced.


Fine Harness


The Tango Dancer paraded around the ring with Ruth Gimpel to earn the Fine Harness Championship title for Pixie Dust & Steel. Earlier in the week Gimpel presented this young horse to the win in the open class as well. Reserve in the open qualifier went to Sonita Santana and David Chretien for Susan Dean Sowle.


For the second week in a row Yvonne Herrera expertly presented Denzel to the Amateur Fine Harness win. Reserve honors went to River’s Wild and Dee Dee Gordon.


Patricia Bonati did a fabulous job on the lines with her young star Pi’ece De R’esistance, winning the Denver/Novice Fine Harness. Reserve honors went to Sonita’s Only You and David Chretien and Susan Dean Sowle.




Roar Of Thunder and Ruth Gimpel hit high speed as they thrilled the crowd with both performances to sweep the open roadster to bike division for Pixie Dust & Steel. Reserve in the open championship went to Top Star Willie and Paul Misiewicz. Earlier this team earned the reserve in the amateur qualifier. Reserve in the open qualifier went to Mr. Popularity and Adam Clauson for Cheyco Farm.


Winning the amateur championship was last year’s open winner The Dream Thief. This year James Rosburg has taken over the lines from Gimpel and with two great drives swept the division. Reserve in the championship went to the speed loving Jim Reynolds driving Graymond.


Scatmando and Bob Jenkins were back this week to earn another Roadster To Wagon title with another speedy performance. Reserve honors went to Humdinger and James Rosburg. Iwi Rob N and Blair Redlhammer put together a fast performance to win the Roadster Under Saddle.




Jessie Pettie continued her winning week as she and Surprise Me swept the open road pony division. Both reserve honors went to their stablemate Kytha and Abel Vega presenting for Golden Creek Farms.


Jessie Pettie was back to the winner’s circle two more times with her amateur pony Bambino. Reserve in the championship went to the talented Tia Maria and Madren Jenkins while the new team of Jack Rabbit and Yvonne Herrera earned the reserve in the qualifier.


Ali DeGray and Seize The Moment lit up the ring to win the Junior Exhibitor Road Pony in their only performance.


Delightful Time and Stephany Monteleone went two-for-two again to sweep the harness pony division. Another team from John Shea Stables, Limited Edition with Abel Vega, captured the Hackney pony division. This neat pony is owned by Golden Creek Farms.


Stephany Monteleone continued her success in the Hackney Pony Pleasure Driving qualifier, earning the win with Mastercraft’s Namesake LF. In the championship they returned to capture the reserve title. Winning the championship was the flashy Holly Go Lightly. On the lines with a pleasure perfect drive in the championship was Ali DeGray. Reserve in the qualifier went to Bear Creek’s Beloved and Josh Chretien driving under the Five Gaits Stable banner.




It was worth the trip down south for Jacqueline Hawkes as she turned in two great rides aboard Harlem’s Gifted Treasure to sweep the five-gaited show pleasure division under the direction of Steve Demjen. Reserve in both classes went to Heirogant and Kristen Thomas for Janet White and trained by Ian Ferguson.


Bouquet O’Hearts and Blair Redlhammer earned a pair of wins in the open park pleasure division with two outstanding performances. Both reserve honors went to Rawhide Rosie and Elizabeth Duggan for Jackie Johnson. Steve Demjen presented Brookhill’s Tom Tom to the Denver/junior win for Danielle Loar. Classy and Jenna Domanico earned the reserve title for Linda Weber.


For Reference Only and Tracy Garcia were on top of their game as they swept the adult three-gaited show pleasure division. Reserve in the championship went to the novice rider winner The Cajun Moon and Jessica Nake. In the adult qualifier Man Of The House and Deborah Exelby captured the red streamers while the junior exhibitor team of Mo Rhythm and Christine Freeman earned the novice rider reserve.


Mo Rhythm and Christine Freeman returned to the show ring in the junior exhibitor championship where this flashy, young team earned the trip to the winner’s circle. Reserve honors went to the 14-17 qualifying winner Star Of The Millennium and Marissa Gillispie for Wendy and Alan Lanoue. Seismic Force and Amy Greenberg garnered the 14-17 red streamers. Winning the 13 and under qualifier was CH Discover. Moving into his new division with ease and confidence, he was a star with Jenna Palmeri. Reserve honors went to Hans Solo and Nicole McSweeney riding with Hawkewood. Pikachu and Melanie Mullins earned their trip to the winner’s circle in the Florida owned qualifier, with Callaway’s Crossed Fingers and Donna Wolfe in for reserve.


Midtown Man and Helen Rosburg were back for the second week and added two more titles to the Pixie Dust & Steel list as they swept the show pleasure driving division. Just As Unique turned in two stellar performances to earn both reserve titles with Josh Chretien on the lines for Nelco. Chretien will be filling in for Cassi Rath this season in the junior exhibitor division while Rath is off in Hollywood fulfilling another dream.


Country Pleasure


Delay Of Game TS and Betty Valenti have found their division as they had two outstanding performances to win the Adult Country Pleasure Championship and the Florida owned qualifier. Reserve in the championship went to the novice rider winner, Gregory Hines and Karla Woodward from MJO Stables. Winning the adult qualifier was Western Fashion and Kristene Lundblad. Reserve in the Florida owned qualifier was Cat Tale and Jaclyn Wynn for Euchee Matthews.


Ali DeGray continued her successful week with two more wins. This time she presented Kalarama’s High Roller to win the junior exhibitor championship and 14-17 qualifier. Reserve in championship and 14-17 qualifier went to the consistent Answered Prayer and Hope Long for Anne Judd. Winning the 13 and under qualifier was Charresse and Carly King for Five Gait Stables.


Josh Chretien showed off his driving skills again by catch-driving Eyes Wide Open to win the Country Pleasure Driving Championship while owner Val Johnson was under the weather. Reserve in both the championship and qualifier went to Choice’s Secret Surprise and Lindsey Morris. Winning the qualifier was Telemark’s Choice and Kristen Weisblat.


The Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy and Sarah Russell won the Country Western Pleasure Championship, receiving the Jill Reynolds Memorial Trophy. Earlier this team won the qualifier as well. Western Fashion earned both reserve titles. In the Saddle & Bridle’s Shatner Western Pleasure class the card was marked the same.




Kristen Thomas continued her reign for the second year in a row, garnering the Saddle Seat Equitation Championship title, this year aboard Cabernet’s Will Command and under the direction of Bill Rodgers. This team also won the UPHA Challenge Cup. Reserve honors in the championship went to Cheyenne Mabey riding under Desiree and Adam Clauson. They also captured the 13 and under win and reserve in the UPHA Challenge Cup. Cassie Bell was polished to win the UPHA 10 and Under Walk and Trot Challenge Cup with Jamie Boros in for reserve. Cassie Bell continued her success winning the Morgan 11 and Under Walk and Trot Saddle Seat Equitation Championship and qualifier. Rachel Roth earned both reserves. In the Western Equitation class, Brittany Simmons earned the blue with Kristene Lundblad in for reserve.




Topping the championship in the Friesian division was the Avalon trained Rommy with Lisa Misiewicz for the second year in a row. Earlier this team earned reserve in the qualifier. Winning the qualifier and returning for the championship reserve was Bouke and Chris Cassenti.




The cast of Morgan champions from Horseshoe Farm made their presence known for the second week in a row as they stayed to compete at Tampa Charity. This time Euchee Matthews switched divisions with DJE Answer To Destiny moving from Pleasure Driving Champion to English Pleasure Champion. The swap also saw Matthews take Gasparilla’s English Pleasure Champion Patchwork Legend down victory lane as the Pleasure Driving Champion for owner Dick Shea. Both horses also won the open qualifiers. Annapolis and Megan Dunkle stepped out of the junior exhibitor ranks this season as they topped the amateur driving and went on to earn the Pleasure Driving Reserve Championship.


Jim and Jenny Taylor and their clients from Memory Lane Farm enjoyed a mid-winter break in sunny Florida. Elizabeth Burick had a grand time on her fronty chestnut Bad Company as they earned the Amateur English Pleasure blue and tricolor. The deep competition saw Alicia Davis and Raindrops Chisum collect the reserve tricolor.


Chloe Hooper and MEM Reality Check added the Junior Exhibitor English Pleasure Championship to their record. Madye Bell and Graywood’s Kera teamed up for the qualifier blue and also collected the reserve championship.


Donna Zimmerman enjoyed a victorious return to Tampa Charity as she rode her sporty CSH Corydon’s Eclipse to the Adult Classic Pleasure Saddle blue and tricolor to add to an undefeated week for the Memory Lane Farm-trained entries. They were followed by the always-competitive team of Alicia Davis and Raindrops Good As It Gets.


All Hail To The Chief and Rebecca Watters started off the season right where they left off with a pair of letter-perfect wins in the junior exhibitor classic qualifier and championship. Ashley Barkett and Barbarella added two more reserve titles for Barbara Merrill.


Tara’s Zeus and Shelby Conklin enjoyed a pair of impressive tricolor wins in the Junior Exhibitor and Open Western Pleasure Championships to the cheers of their fan club. The open qualifier winner Futurity’s Marks Savannah and Rick Davis collected the open reserve championship for Tom and Jo Nell Harrison, while the Davis-trained team of Sugarlane Adonis and Brittany Simmons jogged away with the junior exhibitor blue and reserve tricolor. Rick Davis also guided WSG The Survivor to the junior/novice blue for Dorothy and Lester Johnson,


Ann Smith and Moriah Back N Tan paired up for the Amateur Western Pleasure blue and tricolor with a pair of polished rides. Wallace’s Justice and Corrie Solomon added the reserve ribbons in both outings.


Christina Bauer and Imposter were the real thing as they earned the Hunter Pleasure Championship as well as the amateur blue. Anne Winograd guided Latin Lover to the reserve tricolor for Dianne Johnston.


CBMF Danger Zone and Kelsey Thomas continued their winning streak as they earned the open blue as well as the Junior Exhibitor Hunter Pleasure blue and tricolor. HVK Marquis and Ashley Fix followed up in the second spot in the junior exhibitor qualifier and championship.


The Grand National Reserve Championship pairing of FCF Protégé and Cassie Bell added the Morgan Walk-Trot Pleasure blue to the Whispering Oaks banner over a competitive group of entries.




Cassie Bell had quite a week as she also earned the Open Walk and Trot Pleasure Championship with FCF Protégé. Earning both the reserve championship and qualifying titles were Soulful Warrior and Jamie Boros. Gregory Hines won the qualifier with Kelly Donegan in the irons. Imposter and Christina Bauer won the Hunter Pleasure class, with Latin Lover and Anne Winograd in for reserve.




Saturday afternoon belonged to the academy riders from Bluff Creek Stables, Five Gaits Stables, Judd Stables, Hawkewood, MJO Stables, Rick Davis Stables, Ruth Gimpel Stables, Silver Run Stables, West Coast Morgans and Whispering Oaks competing. The following won top ribbons their classes: Gracie McDonnell, Allen Bornscheuer, Stephanie Alfonso, Robyn Borjas, Ann Quick, Lauren Rogue, Catherine Bornscheuer, Jane McIver, Morgan Dixon, Lisa Hepp, Savannah Blunt, Falon Simmons, Ragen Engel, Andrea Lewis, Katie Dunn, Rachel Watson, Hannah Wears, Johnna Downing, Emily White, Marissa Simmons and Jen Rose Kratz.


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