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West Coast Season Opens With A Trip To The Diamond Jubilee

The Diamond Jubilee Morgan Horse Show opened the West Coast show season as it has for the past 31 years. The cool sea breezes of southern California welcomed exhibitors to the lovely Del Mar Fairgrounds for a sparkling weekend on April 4-6. Spectators got to preview some of the new teams and upcoming stars of the 2003 show season. Approximately 175 horses competed for top honors at the Diamond Jubilee. In spite of the fact that some stables who have been mainstays in the past were unable to participate for a variety of reasons this year, support from many California stables as well as a group of top entries traveling from Colorado and a few other distant locales kept Diamond Jubilee shining brightly. Unlike some other smaller shows, Diamond Jubilee is fortunate in that the generous support of its sponsors also help to keep this show profitable.

This year’s Diamond Jubilee was again presented by the Morgan Horse Club of San Diego County with Georgia Uecker and Kim Arnold heading the hard working show committee. The list of repeat show officials included show manager Mary K. Hartman, show secretary Beverly Hurst assisted by Sherry Hurst, announcer Barbara Patison, paddock steward Kent Moeller, and photographer Howard Schatzberg. Phil Fountain and Jim Havelhurst were selected to officiate this year’s show along with Donna Richardson and Margaret Cutler who judged the open classes in the dressage and carriage divisions. The Diamond Jubilee also hosted the AMHA Judging School for the third time with nearly 20 judges and applicants joining the group headed by Harry Sebring, Cindy Mugnier and Larry Bolen.

In addition to the show ring competition, Diamond Jubilee offered everyone plenty of other opportunities to get together. A pizza party was held on Thursday hosted by America's Finest Morgan Youth Club. Friday afternoon's progressive barn party gave everyone the chance to mingle. The ringside silent auction and stick horse class were also highlights of the weekend.

The Morgan community also took time to remember and honor three of its members who passed away last fall. Jim Wigle, Dodie Schlehuber and Sandy Blankenship were honored for their contributions to the Morgan industry.

The show ring highlights of the Diamond Jubilee Morgan Horse Show follow with complete results also in this issue as well as on our website at IN HAND

The Gelding In Hand classes got the show underway on Friday morning with Festival Bossa Nova collecting the first blue of the weekend. Frank Miller presented Marion Pederson's sporty bay High-Y Black Tie son to the honors in the Two and Under Geldings. Three time World Champion Gelding Key West made a tricolor return to the division as David Young presented Connie Locher's always impressive entry to the Three and Over Geldings and Grand Champion Gelding titles. Missy Rushton-Hanover's pick at Remember November was a frequent visitor to the Diamond Jubilee winner's circle as MEM Reality Check started out as the Reserve Grand Champion Gelding for Del and Judi Voss.

The Stallion In Hand classes followed with the handsome Black Tie Affair son, Maximum Flaire posing as the Yearling Colts winner as well as the Junior Champion Stallion with Jennifer Sommers presenting for Robert and Tracey Wheeler. MLF Sharper Image stormed into the ring with authority as Stacy Hennessy and Gerry Rushton presented the dynamic Meadowland Farm entry to the Five and Over, Senior and Grand Champion Stallion honors. Martin and Glenda Drake enjoyed a tricolor return to the Morgan show world after a ten year hiatus. Their handsome Deer Creek Count De Monet also represented his sire Black Tie Affair in the winner's circle by earning the Three-Year-Old Stallions and Amateur In Hand blues along with the Reserve Senior and Reserve Grand Champion Stallion honors.

The in hand mares graced the ring to open the Saturday morning session with Kimberly Caruso presenting Wintergreen Gwendolyn to the Weanling/Yearling Fillies blue for Ann Taylor. Cathy Grimes began her tricolor sweep of the mare division with the animated chestnut JRS Sheerox who posed for the Two-Year-Old Mares, Junior Champion Mare and Reserve Grand Champion Mare awards for Jeff Raby. Frank Miller was on the lead of the Reserve Junior Champion Mare in Ted and Eutha Giesick's feminine GMH Love To Command, who earned this tricolor for the second year in a row.

The more mature mares began with Moondancer's Diva enjoying a blue ribbon debut as the Three-Year-Old Mare winner. Stacy Hennessy and Heather Luedtke presented Diane Ferran's daughter of Duke Of Wynne and HVK Dreamscape to the Reserve Senior Champion Mare title as well. Bruce and Diane Novak's breeding programs enjoyed a weekend of success including the Something Blue daughter Monogram Blue On Blue, the winner of the Four-Year-Old Mares. Cathy Grimes had her running shoes on as she was back at the head of the smooth and showy Lismore to earn the Five and Over, Senior Champion and Grand Champion Mare honors with Dorothy Burke's Nostradamus daughter.

Darcey Attig was on the lead as Seaswept City Slicker posed for top honors in the Hunter Type In Hand competition for Allison Benbrook. The Western Type In Hand saw Kachina Sunrise earn the top spot for Gene Ditzler. AMB Whambition and Kristy Wallenbrook topped the field for the blue ribbon in the Classic In Hand competition. The Most Classic Morgan victory along with the Mac Wilson Memorial Perpetual Trophy were awarded to Sumac's Black Tie Affair for the second year in a row following a well received presentation for Gael Mountain Morgans handled by Doug Unteidt. PARK

The River's Edge and its clients enjoyed their trip to Del Mar to begin the show season. Bob Kellert and Mary Cockriel had their amateurs and their horses ready to excel as they took on not only the amateur competition, but the open competition as well. It was Alison Bendele who closed out the 2003 Diamond Jubilee in tricolor fashion in the irons of her leg-waving AMHF Mr. Courageous for the Open Park Saddle Championship honors following the winning ride in the Amateur Park Saddle.

It was Vince Le Master who had the honors in the park harness division. Le Master and WSG Mystique Ovation, the 2002 Junior Exhibitor Park Harness World Championship team, gave a grand performance of style and athleticism as they defeated the professional trainers to gain an exciting victory in the Open Park Harness Championship. This followed a pair of matching blue ribbon performances in the Junior Exhibitor Park Saddle and Junior Exhibitor Park Harness qualifiers. Le Master was also railside to cheer on his mom, Cricket Coleman, in her first show teamed with World Champion HR Perfectly Clear. This elegant combination earned the Amateur and Ladies Park Harness blues to the delight of the River's Edge cheering section.

David Young had Grand National Champion Meet The Press cranked up for a victorious performance to close out the Friday evening session with the Open Park Harness blue. The Issues N' Answers son was back to collect the reserve tricolor in the exciting Park Harness Championship for Oak Forest Morgans.

Deer Creek Count De Monet brought another blue ribbon back to Martin and Glenda Drake. This time it was Joel White on the lines of the Black Tie Affair son to capture the Junior Park Harness blue.

World Champion Granprix had a big time in the big Del Mar ring as Gerry Rushton guided Debbie Uecker-Keough's Grandiose son to the Junior Park Saddle win in his saddle debut.

Kris Skaug enjoyed her debut show with her lovely chestnut GLB Coppertone Girl as they made the victory pass in the Open Park Saddle directed by Belle Bradford.


World Champion Nicoria showed the audience what world championship style is all about in his single Diamond Jubilee performance. The Futurity French Command son's talent and good looks have earned him impressive triumphs in saddle and driving for trainer Missy Rushton-Hanover and owner Priscilla Moore. This time the audience got to cheer him on to victory in the Open English Pleasure with Missy Rushton-Hanover aboard.

The English pleasure division had a nice complement of world champions performing in Del Mar. World Champion No Doubt returned to the site of his sensational 2000 debut for Debra Hurst Walters with more fantastic results. Walters and her impressive Grandiose son won top honors and rave reviews as they captured the Amateur English Pleasure blue and tricolor under the direction of The River's Edge.

Bridget Bogh and AMF Morocco opened the season in top form as they triumphed over a competitive field in the Ladies English Pleasure. They also brought the Amateur English Pleasure Reserve Championship back to the Missy Rushton Stables banner. The blue ribbon from the Junior Exhibitor English Pleasure 14-17 also proudly hung on the Missy Rushton banner as Christopher Rushton stepped up to the older division with his Grand National Championship partner Marin Five-O-One to collect the win for Priscilla Moore.

World Champion Park Place Pledge was bright and eager in pursuit of top honors to begin the new season. Paired once again with top riding Samantha Lyttle, in her first show cantering with him, Pledge trotted away with the Junior Exhibitor English Pleasure Championship as well as the 13 and under blue. Katherine Cota and RWF Miss Saigon turned in a poised ride to garner the Junior Exhibitor English Pleasure Reserve Championship.

Missy Rushton-Hanover presented a pair of promising bay youngsters to top honors. Hanover brought the Three-Year-Old English Pleasure blue back to Priscilla Moore as she has many times in the past. This time it was a jewel by the name of Diamonds And Rubies who collected the top honors. Hanover's victorious mount in the Junior English Pleasure hails from a bit farther away. Great Britain's Monnington Morgans own the sporty Shernadell Asgard who topped the competition.

Cricket Coleman looked quite self-assured as she gave her captivating bay Ready To Rumble a pair of outstanding rides to earn the Novice and Limit English Pleasure blues directed by Bob Kellert and Mary Cockriel.

Linda Sheridan enjoyed a blue ribbon start to the season in Del Mar. Matched with her bold mare CCR's Command Edition by David Young, Sheridan collected the Maiden English Pleasure blue.

Malia Meyer was one happy young lady as she rode Almost An Angel to the Del Mar winner's circle. They captured the blue ribbon in the Walk and Trot English Pleasure proudly coached by Lara Galatz. PLEASURE DRIVING

The awarding of the Ed Schlehuber Memorial Trophy in the Open Pleasure Driving Championship marked the tricolor victory and a strong comeback performance for Shangri La JW. Bob Kellert had the dynamic bay fine-tuned for the victory for Carol Ann Lawler. Lismore proved that she is more than just a pretty face as Cathy Grimes presented Dorothy Burke's Nostradamus daughter to the Pleasure Driving Reserve Championship.

David Young presented a pair of impressive winners in the pleasure driving division. Key West continued his winning show with a stellar performance in the Open Pleasure Driving qualifier for Connie Locher. The sleek black KHF Nikko Blue enjoyed a winning West Coast debut as Young drove him to the Novice Pleasure Driving blue over a competitive field of seven for Sheryl Cota.

The Amateur Pleasure Driving Championship went back to the David Young banner as Connie Locher gave the bold performing Gable's High Water a fine drive for tricolor honors. Rick Shepard and Cy Don's Mr. Super turned in a strong challenge for the reserve tricolor honors.

In between his stellar saddle victories, No Doubt brought his world championship driving style to the show ring in Del Mar. Debra Hurst Walters gave the dynamic bay a bold drive to earn the Amateur Pleasure Driving blue over a top field of five under The River's Edge banner.

The world championship driving talents of Priscilla Moore and the world championship performance talents of Haute Couture were put together for the first time at Diamond Jubilee. The results were true blue as they garnered the Ladies Pleasure Driving blue directed by Missy Rushton-Hanover. Hanover introduced MEM Reality Check to the performance division in winning fashion. The fancy, bay topped the competition in both the Junior and Three-Year-Old Pleasure Driving for Del and Judi Voss.

JRS Sheerox was a brilliant presence on victory lane as Cathy Grimes drove Jeff Raby's fiery chestnut to the Two-Year-Old Pleasure Driving Championship. The qualifier winner Festival Bossa Nova collected the reserve tricolor to close out the show with Frank Miller presenting for Marion Pederson.

Lookaway's Antionette displayed her winning style and motion as Merin Maggi teamed her new mare to the Junior Exhibitor Pleasure Driving blue coached by Cathy Grimes. WESTERN PLEASURE

The Western Pleasure division was chock full of quality and quantity with numerous Oklahoma winners along with new combinations beginning the season at Diamond Jubilee. The division came to a colorful finish as Monogram New Kidd In Town and Bruce Novak were judge Havelhurst's pick in the Open Western Pleasure Championship. This followed a blue ribbon ride for the big palomino in the Senior Western Pleasure. The reserve tricolor went home with a Hurst sister for the second year in a row. This time it was Leslie Hurst teaming up with her pretty Nobility daughter Hopefullee to earn the tricolor.

He's Simply Marvelous and Virginia Adams were smooth and steady as they jogged away with the Amateur Western Pleasure Championship for the second year in a row. They mastered the field in the nine entry Ladies Western Pleasure to start the week in style. Trainer Garn Walker also brought Adams a pair of matching blues from the open division. Walker took a turn on He's Simply Marvelous for the Western Pleasure Stallions and Geldings victory in this division's largest class with 12 entries. Grand National Champion Raintree Let's Dance ventured into the open division with style and elegance as she bested the field in the Western Pleasure Mares.

Garn Walker introduced another burgeoning young star to the winner's circle as Tempest Avant Garde earned a pair of blue ribbons. The Futurity French Command son jogged away with the First Year Green and Novice Western Pleasure blues for proud owner Connie Melendy.

LSR Jack Daniels made his presence known as owner Kathy Christenson presented the white trimmed bay to the Amateur Western Pleasure Reserve Championship following the Executive Pleasure win. Trainer Heidi Torres was aboard Jack Daniels for the victory pass in the eight entry open qualifier.

The top performing team of JMF Wild Card and Rea Olliffe earned two trips to the winner's circle. They brought the 11 entry Amateur Western Pleasure blue along with the Scholars Pleasure victory back to the Sterling Hills banner. Carol Marsden was proud of her handsome Simply Maserati son Raffaelo as he collected a pair of matching blue ribbons in the Pre-Green Walk/Trot Pleasure followed by the Three-Year-Old Western Pleasure with Heather Luedtke aboard.

Sterling Hills was also the home of Junior Exhibitor Western Pleasure Champion Evil Knievel as Hollie Luedtke presented Jill Smith's big gelding to the win. The winning 13 and under team of Monogram Backfire and Danielle Dapser jogged away with the reserve tricolor.

Cathy Grimes and owner Lucinda Witt teamed up for another winning entry as MCC Magic Irish Desire collected a pair of wins in the Maiden and Junior Western Pleasure competition. HUNTER PLEASURE

The Hunter Pleasure Championship and the Benstrom's Challenge Trophy were earned by World Champion Startrend Stepin Out with Jennifer Sommers in the irons of the bold moving gelding for Stephanie Griffith. Farceur Once More and Belle Bradford brought the reserve tricolor back to owner Sandy Hannagan following a win in the division's largest class of 12 in the Novice Hunter Pleasure.

World Champion GPM Genesis B and Melissa Walker looked ready for another great season as they began the year in the winner's circle once again. The perfect combination of boldness and precision made them standout winners of the Amateur Hunter Pleasure blue and tricolor. Garn Walker prepped the handsome bay with a win in the 11 entry Open Hunter Pleasure to start the show.

Kathy Barnett was one happy lady as she rode Out Of The Blue Willow to the Ladies Hunter Pleasure blue over a field of 11 and went on to earn the Amateur Hunter Pleasure Reserve Championship. Stablemate O To Be Blue bested a field of seven for the Limit Hunter Pleasure victory for Joan Blankenship.

The Junior Exhibitor Hunter Pleasure Championship featured a tricolor start to the season for the world championship pairing of Futurity's Roman Torch and Merin Maggi following their 13 and under win. Monogram Backfire and Danielle Dapser picked up their first of two reserve tricolors for Bruce and Diane Novak in the junior exhibitor championship. JMF Shadow Express and Adele Holzman Chadwick had the winning number in the 14-17 qualifier.

Madeline Berry flashed a big winning smile as she guided her solid partner Park Place Bonaparte to the Walk/Trot Hunter Pleasure blue coached by Laurie Blake.

Cathy Grimes had a big string of winning youngsters including Junior Hunter Pleasure winner Ranchboss Musicman for owner Jennifer Mahoney. Black Tie Preferred made a winning transition to the hunter pleasure division where Katie Stauffer rode the Carol Marsden entry to the maiden blue.

TGR Society Girl and Kimberly Caruso brought another blue ribbon back to Ann Taylor as they topped the First Year Green Hunter Pleasure. Baccarat's Diamond Rio came back to the Del Mar winner's circle this year with Bethany Lambrecht riding to the Road Hack blue for Anne Slivestri. CLASSIC PLEASURE

The Classic Pleasure Saddle Championship rounded out the competitive division with VVM Litigator and Eric Kessler ending an impressive show in tricolor fashion. This well matched pair earlier triumphed in the Junior Exhibitor Classic Pleasure as well as the Novice Horse/Rider Classic Pleasure directed by Anne Speck. Marion Pederson was matched with Festival Jazzman to collect the Classic Pleasure Saddle Reserve Championship for Frank and Ann Miller.

The seven entry Open Classic Pleasure Saddle saw the handsome Fire Fox Baron In Command and Ashley Baskett team up for the victory for Ted and Eutha Giesick. The Ladies Classic Pleasure Saddle blue went back to the Miller Equestrian banner as Sharon Shedroff rode the white trimmed AW Wishful Thinking to the win.

The Classic Pleasure Driving Championship featured a lovely new entry to the division rising to the top as Tomeri Tiamo and Teri Brisco earned the tricolor garland. The smiling Teri was once again teamed with a Futurity French Command daughter to earn top honors as the four-year-old mare began the show with a win in the competitive seven entry Novice Horse/Driver Classic Pleasure Driving directed by Gerry Rushton. World Champion Stonecroft Sedona and Cricket Coleman turned in a stellar showing to capture the Open Classic Pleasure Driving blue followed by the reserve tricolor under the River's Edge banner. EQUITATION

The Equitation division was filled with promising young riders to begin the season. Sara Rose Hunt showed style and determination in her debut show with Liberation Velvet Spirit in the equitation division as they earned the Saddle Seat Equitation Championship coached by Ann Miller. Stablemate Brooke Yule was also matched for the first time with the handsome Cedar Pond Bay's Command for the reserve tricolor.

The Grand National Championship team of Ariana Corrigan and Festival Troubadour began the season in winning form in Del Mar. They prepared for a trip to the finals in OKC with a win in the UPHA Challenge Cup coached by Anne Speck. Samantha Lyttle began a memorable weekend with her first of three winning rides with Park Place Pledge as they bested a division high eight riders in the competitive Saddle Seat Equitation 13 & Under.

It was Kara Willbanks who turned in the winning workout in the AMHA Saddle Seat Medal aboard Charlestown Fairdawn directed by Ann Miller. Ashley Baskett and Fire Fox Baron In Command added to their winnings in the Novice Saddle Seat Equitation coached by Glynis Snowden.

Tayler Walters had a big cheering section as she and her new partner Coalition X-Static earned the blue ribbon honors in the Walk and Trot Saddle Seat Equitation instructed by Anne Speck. Katie Shaw and RGF Just-In-Fame earned their time in the winner's circle as they topped the Walk and Trot Hunt/Western Seat Equitation coached by Jennifer Sommers.

Merin Maggi and her mount Futurity's Roman Torch matched their pleasure wins as they earned the Hunt Seat Equitation Championship and the 13 and under qualifier blue coached by Cathy Grimes. Caitlin Koontz gave S.A. Talisa a polished ride for the reserve tricolor honors.

Sara Ascensio had another winning Diamond Jubilee as she rode Sea Cloud Silhouette to the AMHA Hunt Seat Medal and the Hunt Seat Equitation 14-17. Sarah Laderman and ION Best Kept Secret bested five riders to win the Novice Hunt Seat Equitation.

Djamie Soejoto certainly won't forget her debut show with EL General Command as they made a trio of visits to the winner's circle. Garn Walker had his young rider well prepared as she dominated the field in the novice rider and 13 and under qualifiers on the way to the Western Seat Equitation Championship.

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