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Sunshine and Saddle Horses in Monterey

by Leeann Mione

MONTEREY, Calif. - The Monterey Springfest Horse Show, held April 13-16 at the Monterey County Fairgrounds, hosted Saddlebreds, Roadsters, Hackney Ponies, Friesians and Equitation riders to be judged by Donna Pettry-Smith, in addition to Icelandic Horses, Tennessee Walking Horses and Missouri Fox Trotters.

With all of the rain that California has suffered so far this year, the clear skies were a welcomed relief although the cold temperatures and windy conditions were somewhat of a surprise.

Long-standing supporters of the Monterey show returned this year including Diamond Hills, Rockridge Farm, Rich Swiger Stables, Dixon Stables, Dick Boettcher Stables, Deardorff Stables, Monarch Stables, Rancho Vista, Rainwater Saddlebreds, Dixon Stables, Seamair Farm, Seaview Farm, Black Sterling Friesians, and Lake View Farm. Court Stables and Bennett Stables also returned this year to Monterey, with the group from Court Stables making the trip from Canada.

Dale Arnston, of Country Meadow Farm, traveled from Illinois to serve as learner judge. The management team of Rae Deane Stone, Harriet Landrum and Leonora Bedolla worked hard to keep things moving smoothly.

Roxanne Hood served as secretary and Cynthia Reid was the USEF Steward. Anne Blecker was the paddock steward and the inimitable Malcolm Rossell was the official announcer.

Rick Osteen returned to capture the winning photos and Take One Video Productions taped classes upon request.

Jim Trader was the organist and Jim Kurtze was the awards coordinator. Terry Brennan served as ring mistress and Dave Fraser was the farrier.

Libby Stofer was the official EMT and James Hay, DVM was the show veterinarian. For some, Monterey represents the start of a new show season and for others, it is just one more step towards accomplishing their goals for the season. Whatever the case, Monterey has a large and loyal following and showcased talent in divisions across the board.

Denver Junior/Limit winner Spirited Revival and Laurel Nelson were joined by Extra Radiant and Charles Court, Drambuee and Bruce Dixon and He’s Got Chutzpah with Don Deardorff in the Five-Gaited Stake on Friday evening for the session finale.

All four entries put on a good show but it was the stellar performance by Spirited Revival that earned the nod for Laurel Nelson’s second win of the week. Extra Radiant, after showing earlier in the week with owner Kaye Sullivan, finished as the reserve grand champion.

Chuck Court won last year’s Five-Gaited Stake and rode Red Oak’s Colonel to the win in the open qualifier for Hal and Elizabeth Thompson.

Boettcher Stables teammate to Spirited Revival, Full Spectrum carried owner Martha Lampe Keck to the win in both the four-entry Amateur Five-Gaited Stake and six-entry ladies/amateur qualifier. Gail Hooker and Callaway’s Cover Page moved up in the ribbons and finished with the reserve tricolor from Rockridge Farm.

The Full Monty and Julie DeVault turned it on and put together a strong effort to finish with the win in the three-entry Junior Exhibitor Five-Gaited Stake. Bill Tomin met the winners for their presentation. Jared Hill rode The Irish Ember to the win in the juvenile qualifier before returning for the second place finish in the stake under the direction of Diamond Hills.

A pair of contenders battled in the Three-Gaited Stake. Open winner Doubletrees Agua Blue and Don Deardorff took the victory for Pinnacle Farm LLC. Long Stem Rose and Brigitte Scholl were reserve for owner Marcia Sola.

Like Sunshine and Susan Valley Chen took the solo trip in the Amateur Three-Gaited Stake after winning the Ladies/Amateur Three-Gaited class to add to the Diamond Hills count.

Julie DeVault and She’s My Desire teamed up last fall and started their season this year in winning fashion. The pair won both the juvenile stake and juvenile qualifier for DeVault Farms LLC. Gotta Lotta Fizz debuted in the juvenile division with Kiley Coleman and finished as the juvenile reserve grand champion for owner Sandra Doyle. Coleman showed under the direction of Nani Barnes of Lake View Farm.

Brigitte Scholl rode Calm Surrender to the solo win in the Three-Gaited Limit Horse Stake.

Three of the five teams that competed in the park qualifier returned to compete in the Open Three-Gaited Park Stake. Callaway’s Gold Coast and owner Missy Bennett were the team to beat in both classes under the direction of Jim Bennett. CH Dr. Decker and Bruce Dixon turned in the reserve grand championship effort for owner Debra Vallner.

The Fine Harness Stake was an entertaining class with four strong contenders. No Jacket Required won the Ladies/Amateur Fine Harness class with owner Sally Spalding before returning in the stake for the winning drive by Michael Craghead. Bill Tomin drove Kalarama’s On A Roll to the blue ribbon in the open class before sending owner Jack Reich in the ring for the stake. Reich and Kalarama’s On A Roll claimed the reserve title.

Wee Pee’s Meadows caused plenty of talk in the Denver Junior/Limit Fine Harness class with owner Linda Nicholas to close out the division under the direction of Lance Bennett.

Open roadster champion Air Force One and Jim Nottage made it a three-peat, capturing the Roadster To Bike Grand Championship for the third year in a row under the direction of Don Deardorff. Posse Man and Harry Chapman finished in the reserve slot in the roadster stake.

The Seamair Farm-directed ponies were well represented with their respective owners all weekend at Monterey. Smart Charlie and Greg Carstens captured the Roadster Pony Championship title after winning the open class for owner Joan Richardson.

Awesome Spirit and Mary Teter were met by Carstens in the winner's circle twice, as they won both the Hackney Pleasure Driving Pony Championship and qualifier under his direction. The ponies of Dixon Stables captured top ribbons in their respective divisions as well. What Luck and Sandra Surber were the Roadster Pony Reserve Grand Champions. Surber also drove Heartland Candidate to two winning appearances in the cob tail division. Dixon teammate Yvette Scandling and her pony Heartland Entitled were reserve in the pleasure pony driving division.

Will's No Doubt About It followed up wins at Carousel Charity with both wins in the Five-Gaited Pleasure Stake and qualifier with owner Helen Taylor. The Dixon Stables-trained team topped four other teams for the qualifier win and three other teams in the stake. Sarah Hudson, daughter of Mary Teter, rode Such A Charming Charlie to the reserve tricolor in the Five-Gaited Pleasure Stake.

Sacajawea Charbonneau turned in an eye-catching performance in the Park Pleasure Stake with trainer Dave Becker Jr. to earn the tricolor for owner Phyllis Hawkins. Death By Chocolate and Debbie Tomin, after a winning performance in the qualifier, finished as the reserve grand champions.

Tomin was back in the winner's circle with her pleasure horse, Picante. They were unstoppable on their way to the presentation in both the Adult Three-Gaited Pleasure Stake and adult qualifier. Callaway's Liberty Valance and Breen Cullen picked up the reserve tricolor under the J. Bennett Stables banner.

Both juvenile pleasure winning ribbons also went back to Rockridge Farm. CH French Silk Stockings was in top form with owner Loni Fuller on board for both wins. Doubletrees Lymrique and Whitney Howard were reserve grand champions from Deardorff Stables.

Champagne Barbara and Alexandra Johnson won the Three-Gaited Pleasure Limit Rider Stake under the direction of Brigitte Scholl. Spin The Top was reserve in the stake with Dean MacCracken in the irons from Rich Swiger Stables. Whitney Howard and Doubletrees Number One Son won the qualifier in their only appearance.

Haley Hudson put another blue ribbon on the Diamond Hills tack room wall when she rode CH Supreme Roman to the win in the 10 and Under Walk and Trot Pleasure class.

The new team of owner/trainer Jeffrey Fetzer and Mahvalous Guy were twice victorious in Monterey. They finished with the Show Pleasure Driving Championship title after winning the qualifier. Wild Merry Rose and Shari Rainwater finished in the reserve slot for Rainwater Saddlebreds under the direction of Dave Becker Jr.

CH Spirit Of Champagne and Cathy Sauer, of Sunrise Hill Farm, won the Five-Gaited Country Pleasure Championship and qualifier under the direction of Deardorff Stables. Su Casa and Julie Streitfeld, from Monarch Stables, were the reserve grand champions.

Richard's Time and Patty Ladd added the tricolor from the Country Pleasure Stake to the Bennett Stables count for the weekend. Mahvalous Revival, winner of the qualifier, finished with the reserve tricolor with owner Kathy Krause from Dick Boettcher Stables.

Seven western country pleasure horses came through the gate for their championship, making their class one of the largest of the show. When Pettry-Smith turned in her card, it was the team of Janine Hill and Perfect Adventure going to the winner's circle. Diamond Hills also earned the reserve tricolor when qualifier winner CH Fiasco was named the reserve grand champion with owner Doug Glick.

Personal Value and Dawn Dumas topped the Saddle & Bridle Shatner Western Pleasure class under the direction of Chuck Court.

Shiseido and Susan Valley Chen went to the winner's circle in the Saddle & Bridle Hunter Seat Classic and returned in the Hunter Country Pleasure Stake to take that title as well. Sarah Rainwater and Zane Grey finished with the reserve streamers for Rainwater Saddlebreds. Thank Heaven and Deborah Schuetz Jones won the open hunter class and topped a pair of other entries for the win.

Ewout VD and Janna Weir Goldman swept the open english pleasure division for Black Sterling Friesians. An Heir About Him and Lauren Shaw were reserve in the English Pleasure Stake.

Jared Hill and Pasta continued their successful partnership under the Diamond Hills banner by winning both the Saddle Seat Equitation Championship and 17 and Under UPHA Challenge Cup. Siri Hadland, directed by Brigitte Scholl, was the 14-17 equitation champion and finished as the Saddle Seat Equitation Reserve Grand Champion with her CH Blue Ridge Miles.

Haley Hudson and CH Supreme Roman won the 10 and under walk and trot class from Diamond Hills to add yet another equitation blue to the total.

Haley Hirschhorn, riding her Friesian Floris van Nienke, won the UPHA Walk and Trot Challenge Cup class under the direction of Dixon Stables.

The Friesians were out in force at Monterey. Seven of the big, black horses from Holland kept the crowd entertained in both the Friesian Under Saddle Stake and the Friesian Under Saddle Limit Horse class.

Gysbert Fan Marksate carried Janine Hill to yet another grand championship title when Pettry-Smith named them the winners of the under saddle stake. Arends and Laurel Nelson were the reserve grand champions. The new team of Ate van de Wittewijk and Janna Goldman won the under saddle qualifier.

Lance Bennett of Rancho Vista and Friesian Focus was ecstatic when his riders finished one-two in the Friesian Walk and Trot Stake for Riders Any Age. Otto and Cathryn Hager took the tricolor and were followed in the ribbons by Sil and Joan Fernandez. Otto and Hager also won the walk and trot qualifier for Friesian Focus.

Lance Bennett returned to the ring for the Friesian Under Saddle Limit Horse class, but this time he was an exhibitor. Bennett rode Wodan to the blue ribbon for Friesian Focus.

Haley Hirschhorn closed out the division with her winning ride on Floris van Nienke in the Friesian Walk and Trot 10 and Under Pleasure class. Hirschhorn was directed to her win by Bruce Dixon and Jennifer Dixon.

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