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Texans Kick Off Season with T.A.S.H.A. Winter Classic



by Ann Bullard

 

KATY, Texas – Young horses and young riders starred at the Texas American Saddlebred Horse Association’s Winter Classic Show held Feb. 2 and 3 at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center. The combination of an unusually warm weekend and the area’s annual awards banquet attracted exhibitors from Texas and as far away as the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

 

The event served as a warm-up for the Southwest circuit, which opens with the San Antonio Charity Horse Show, March 7 through 9. With many of the area’s show horses just starting back to work after a winter’s break, performance classes were light. However, exhibitors, parents and visitors who wandered over from a training

clinic held at the adjacent arena enjoyed a few of the area’s seasoned teams as well as four-legged youngsters just getting used to the arena.

 

Elly and Kevin Berman helped keep Bluebonnet Farm’s name on announcer Melissa Cole’s lips. A consistent winner with his roadster pony, Albert Kaponey, Kevin proved he is just as handy with a ‘big horse,’ driving his grandfather’s Xuxa to win both the Show Pleasure Driving qualifier and championship. Trainer Sandy Currier kept Elly Berman busy with the five-gaited Global Scene and the sporty, park-pleasure champion Uncut Jewel. Currier showcased the farm’s breeding program by riding the Perwiens’ Diablo Blue and IPOD and Neartown Animal Clinic’s Tashi’s Mist to blue ribbons. She also rode Select Fire to the Five-Gaited Open blue.

 

Megan McClellan, T.A.S.H.A’s Overall Academy High-Point Champion for 2007, started the season off right, pinning the qualifying blues and tricolors for both Adult Academy Equitation and Performance to the Bluebonnet tack room. She rode Bluebonnet’s High Hopes to all four victories.

 

Bill Marple and Pamela Fricke represented trainer Philip deBruyn in the winner’s circle. Marple and Fricke shared rides on Endolane Firecracker, with Marple winning the Adult Show Pleasure qualifier and Fricke taking the championship tricolor. Marple also won the Park Pleasure Adult and amateur titles with Kalarama’s Shooting Star and Texas Sky. Fricke donned hunt seat clothes to ride Marple’s American Sky to the Hunter Pleasure Championship.

 

Laura Currey, Beth Oseroff and Carol Winters earned top honors for Milligan Stables. Riding Rachael Worthey’s Callaway’s Trooper, Currey won the Show Pleasure 17 and qualifier and Saddle Seat Equitation 17 and Under blue. Oseroff and Viviane Daniels’s Illusive Step continue to be formidable competitors in English Country Pleasure, winning both the junior exhibitor blue and tricolor. Winters rode her Simply Spool to win the Five-Gaited Show Pleasure Championship. Milligan Trainer Jenn Holdren rode Denise Hurst’s Roseridge’s Night And Day to the blue in the Three-Gaited Park Open, their only appearance.

 

Dan Flowers’s Miracle Farm clients had a good show in both the performance and pleasure divisions. Chloe Tresten and Wing’s Rolling Stone brought home a pair of top awards in Junior Exhibitor Five-Gaited competition while her mother, Chris, rode Life’s A Dance ERB to the Five-Gaited Show Pleasure tricolor. Nancy Moreno had

another great show, winning both Country Western Pleasure classes aboard her Likely Suspect and the Amateur Three-Gaited Park title with her seasoned Jigsaw Johnny.

 

Blue ribbons were divided between SGF Winning Ways Farm, Victory Lane Farm, Victoria Farms, Shenandoah Stables, Lone Star Saddlebreds and Foster Farm South.

 

Complete results can be searched and downloaded by clicking here.

 

Seen at TASHA:

 

Jim Aikman, who came to Houston to emcee the

TASHA Hall of Fame presentation on Saturday

night, stopped to help Mallory Brown with her tie.

 

Lauren Greenwald, Tristen Ramirez and Katie Park

of SGF Winning Ways Farm donned Mardi Gras beads

in honor of the holiday weekend. Ramirez started the

2008 season as she ended it, as the Academy Walk

and Trot 10 and Under Equitation Grand Champion.

 

Bridget McNeese (center) brought her hunter from her

suburban Houston farm to show in the Open Hunter Class

at TASHA. Bonnie Brown Morales (left) and her mother, Glo,

came down from Dallas to join Aikman for a family weekend.

 

Mardi Gras meant two days’ vacation for those on the

Mississippi Gulf Coast. The ladies of Victoria Farms chose

showing in Houston to the annual blowout. Pictured (back, l-r)

are Amy Jacobs, Patti Roberts and (front) Victoria Robinson.

 

Philip deBruyn’s group had a successful weekend. Pictured (l-r)

are Missy Knebel, Nikki Krieg, deBruyn, Pamela Fricke, Bill

Marple, his mother, Barbara, and Sandy Marple.

 

 

Debbie Graves of Shenandoah Stables coached Ashley

Bryce aboard The Diamond Chip to three blue ribbons

and a reserve in Academy Performance and Equitation for

riders 11 and Over. She is pictured with her parents, Carol

and Ken Bryce, after her championship ride.

 

Nicole Tucker, Megan Weise and Sara Bratcher of

Lone Star Saddlebreds enjoyed the weekend.

 

Jessica Wheeler of Victory Lane Farm had a big smile

after her reserve championship ride in the Academy

Equitation Walk and Trot 10 and Under class.

 

 

 

 

 

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