Skip to content

Wisconsin Futurity Horse Festival Celebrates Its 30th Birthday



 

by Nancy McConnell

           

MADISON, Wisc. -- The 30th annual Wisconsin Futurity Horse Festival once again gave breeders, owners and trainers the perfect setting to show their horses and ponies. The Dane County Fairgrounds is the location for this hotly competitive show that this year awarded over $100,000 in prize money to exhibitors Sept. 15-18.

           

In addition to the prize money, breathtaking bronze trophies are awarded at the Wisconsin Futurity Horse Show. This year, along with every victory pass came the traditional bronze by Dimaro. This year's trophy was perhaps one of her very best. Also, the sculpture of world's grand champion CH Callaway’s Sugarplum was generously donated to the show by the Goodman/Manilow family. This sculpture was also awarded to a special winner at the show, along with several more beautiful bronze perpetual memorial trophies, which were given out in special classes.

           

The 19th Annual Limited Breeders' Championship for Weanlings is the prototype for other classes around the country. This year the prize money rose to $77,500 which was awarded to the top 10 finishers. Twenty-four competed for the prize money and 12 that were called back to be worked again. Pull Up Your Socks, the winner, is sired by Reedann's Top Gun and was shown by the incomparable Jim Aikman for Wisconsin owner Walter Healey, who received $27,000 in prize money.

           

In for second and $16,875 was Colorful Tale, sired by The Mystery Writer and skillfully shown by the McGlaughlin brothers for Reedannland Farms. Third place was awarded to another colt well shown by Jim Aikman for another Wisconsin owner, Mike Bletsoe. Cheetah Cheetah Bang Bang is sired by The Cheetah and took home $10,125 for the day.

           

All three of these baby show horses put on a dynamite show and each received a first place vote from the panel and a lot of enthusiastic support from the appreciative audience.

           

Manager Scott Stollenwerk has a lot to do with the success of the Wisconsin Futurity Horse Show. He has put together an efficient staff headed by Cheryl Rangel and Vicky Holston in the office, John Owens and Buddy Waggoner on the microphones, and George Robertson and John Frye, who direct the center ring. Rick Osteen was the official show photographer. Raymond Shively, Gene van der Walt and Kim Crumpler made up the experienced judging panel for all classes and Josie Forbes was the capable USEF Steward.

           

The Wisconsin Futurity offers amateur and open weanling and yearling classes, two-year-old fine harness and in-hand, and the $10,000 Three-Year-Old Park Pleasure class. The prize money is attractive, the facility is first class and the breeders and trainers bring their best to Madison.

           

Margo Baird's MBA Equestrians, Inc. won the Yearling Filly and the Grand National Yearling Class with Meg Ryan MBA. This fancy chestnut filly, sired by Phi Slama Jama, was handled by Todd Valentine.

           

The Yearling Colt class and the championship belonged to Reedann's Heir To Glory and Dr. Alan Raun's famed Reedannland Farm. Reserve in the championship was Majestica from the breeding program of Jonelle and Paul Chovanec and shown by Scott Matton.

           

The Wisconsin Futurity Two-Year-Old Fine Harness class was also on Wednesday and it was a unanimous win for Royal Crests Rockin' On Heir. Bruce and Rusty Rademann bred this talented colt and their trainer Pat Wessel showed him. The Rademanns showed some top stock in the futurity and took home some important ribbons and their share of the prize money. Majestic’s Top Billing, driven by Scott Matton, was reserve for Jonelle and Paul Chovanec.

           

The weanlings showed on Thursday and Friday. The filly class had 12 entries and emerging with this victory and also the championship was Phind The Treasure shown by Jan and Jerry McGlaughlin for Reedannland. Kris Martalock led She's Amber Delight, a stunning Catalyst daughter, for the reserve ribbon for owner Doris Thorwald.

           

Twenty weanling colts showed in their class. The winner's circle belonged to Hoochie Koochie, sired by It's Hammertime, and shown by his owners and breeders Don and Shelli Tradup from Minnesota. Joe Russell brought March To The Arch up for the second place ribbon. He is sired by Hickory Knoll Farm's own The Last Don and he captured the third place ribbon in the championship. Also in the championship, Ray Krussell moved Phantom Menace up to the reserve spot for owner Chris Smith.

           

The Amateur Two-Year-Old In-Hand victory went to Mafia Mistress and Joe Russell's Hickory Knoll Farm. Hickory Knoll also won both the Amateur Weanling and yearling classes with Wisteria Lane and Without a Trace. Brendan Heinz led both Royal Crests Rising Above The Rock and Royal Crests Bad To The Stone to the reserve ribbon in the Amateur Weanling Championship and the Amateur Yearling Championship.

           

The $10,000 Wisconsin Futurity Three-Year-Old Park Pleasure Class again brought substantial prize money to its entries. The unanimous win and $3000 went to Royal Crests Natural Stone shown by Wes Fick for Bruce and Rusty Rademann. Another $2500 was awarded to the second place entry A Made Man and breeder Hickory Knoll Farm. This colt was shown for Joe Russell by Mayo Moctezuma.

           

Sunday's performance had two Grand National sponsored classes. In the Two-Year-Old Fine Harness class, Mafia Mistress picked up another blue ribbon and $750 in prize money for Hickory Knoll Farm. In the Yearling In Hand class, Meg Ryan MBA claimed her second blue ribbon and grand national prize money for MBA and handler Todd Valentine.

           

The performance classes were competitive and entertaining. On Friday Evening CH John D. Smith was officially retired in center ring. He was joined by former trainers, owners and friends in a touching tribute to a special show horse. His retirement party was part of the progressive aisle party, which took place after the show. Many stables participated and there was a lot of good food.

           

On Saturday evening the official exhibitors' party took place in the main aisle of the coliseum. Finally, on Sunday morning, immediately following the Limited Breeders' Weanling class, the futurity hosted an outstanding breakfast brunch. All events were well-attended and enjoyed by all.

           

The open championships at this show are jackpot classes and Boo, owned by Charles Goodman, was the unanimous repeat winner of the $2500 Five-Gaited Championship. Barbara Goodman Manilow unleashed her black mare another notch and powered out all five gaits. Dick Obenauf trains this flawless team. Rick Wallen rode the open class winner The Talk Of Lexington for the reserve championship. Gandy Dancer, shown by Marc Holm, was a popular third place finisher.

           

The junior class winner was another unanimous choice of the judges. The dynamic Que Pasa, shown by Louie Louw, won the class while Oban was a solid second for trainer Tom Scott and Beau Provost, Inc.

           

The UPHA Five-Gaited Classic had only three entries, but the crowd loved winner My Heiristotle, who was shown by his trainer Fonzie del Rio for Cailan Shannon. This colt has tons of personality.

           

The eight-entry Open Amateur Five-Gaited and the championship had the identical top three winners. The amateur gentlemen took this class by storm with three first-rate horses. First place belonged to Roseridge's Gold and Doug Lindstrom. Downtown Strutter and Paul Treiber, who earned a first place vote in each class, captured reserve. Heirobatic and Kurt Antonacci were right there for third, showing for owner Ricky Cook.

           

The junior exhibitors rode hard in both their gaited qualifier and championship. Callaway's Don't Panic won the qualifier for Lindsey Kellner. Nick Neviaser and his partner CH Harlem’s Hot Ticket backed up their Louisville win and claimed the blue in the championship. 

           

The Three-Gaited Jackpot Championship brought six entries through the gate. Two top amateur/lady riders claimed the first and second awards. Current Ladies' Amateur World's Champion of Champions CH Callaway's Sugarplum made a fantastic show for Barbara Goodman Manilow and Charles Goodman. Audrey Hepburn and Morgan Wolin were a picture perfect team and garnered the reserve streamers.

           

The Junior Three-Gaited class was a good win for the talented In My Sight and Ray Krussell, who rode for Virginia Grundy. Born Independent and Terri Anne Ullman had a first place vote and rode up for second.

           

Callaway's Wanna Bet, the UPHA Classic Three-Gaited winner, qualified for The American Royal Classics Championship for trainer Tom Scott and owner Robert Ratte.

           

The juvenile three-gaited division was hot! Minnesota and Wisconsin put some top horses in the ring and their young riders rode like the pros. To Die For looked confident and smooth to win the first class for Meredithe Steinhauer. In the championship, Louisville winner Devote came back strong for the win. Ashley Moore rode Devoté with cool confidence and fought for those good spots on the rail. This team is trained by Jay Wood. Days Grecian Gray was second in both classes for Michelle Krentz and trainers Scott and Carol Matton. They are a superb team with tons of charisma.

           

CH The Super Nova continues to be right on top of his game. He was on a mission in both of his amateur three-gaited classes and went straight to the winner's circle for owner/rider Travis Van Zetten. Lady Cinnamon and Barbara Goodman Manilow were second in the open amateur walk-trot class while Nic Nac Caramac was extra sharp to be second in the amateur championship for Virginia Grundy.

           

The Three-Gaited Two-Year-Old class was a graduating class for futurity babies. Sarah Lucht showed Heir By Design for long time futurity supporter Mike Bletsoe to the unanimous victory. Lana Gilpin rode An American Beauty up for second. Jack Nicholson, Scandalist and Mafia Mistress collected the rest of the ribbons.

           

Another reigning world champion earned the top ribbon in the park pleasure class. Tom Bombolis had First Class Heir on the money for both wins in the division. Royal Crest Rock It Man was shown well by Pat Wessel for reserve.

           

The $2500 Park Jackpot was a big win for Daddy's Treat and trainer Scott Matton. Daddy's Treat returned on Saturday and made a great show for Kerry Honkamp and tied second in the amateur park class.

           

The Hackney Harness division was well-supported throughout the week. Meredithe Steinhauer won two AHHS Youth Medallion Classes with Rick Wallen-trained ponies. Dun Haven Majestic Motion was sharp and mannerly to win the pleasure driving class and Thunderation drove like a sports car to win the road pony class.

           

Recently crowned World's Grand Champion Calvin Hobbs and Andy Freseth won the Roadster Pony Championship, while Mike Schallock was reserve with Heartland Picture Perfect. Seamair Strutter was victorious for Schallock in the Amateur Road Pony Championship.

           

The 30th Annual Wisconsin Futurity Horse Festival has wrapped up another year. Exhibitors will surely return to the show next year for the beautiful weather, hot competition and gracious competition that makes this show a favorite!

           

There's a familiar quote that says: “In this part of the country, they take their pleasure horses seriously.” What an appropriate description of this year's show! The gaited pleasure division had 10 entries in the qualifying class on Friday evening. World's champion CH Hear The Music and Sarah Werry captured all the first place votes with top performances in the qualifier and championship. In the qualifying class, CH Lexmark was reserve for Laurie Stollenwerk. In the championship, however, Lexmark was trying to avoid another horse problem and Laurie took a spill, which resulted in a badly broken arm. We all wish her a speedy recovery. After the class lined up, and after a long wait, the many times world's champion CH Hear The Music was named the champion and Unspoken Intentions, ridden by Sarah Luft for owner Sue Worzalla, tied reserve. 

           

After four pleasure driving qualifying classes took place during the week, 10 competitive entries drove through the gate for the championship. World's Champion of Champions CH Heirs Town and Alice Unger and I'm Dave with Claudia Gardner Sipp were unanimous winners of their split classes. Callaway's Sportster made a beautiful, mannerly show to trot away with the USHAF Youth Medallion win with Paige Giusfredi in the buggy. Once again, Brendan Heinz skillfully piloted another top junior pleasure driving horse to the winner's circle. He drove world title holder The Paper Princess JJW, who is only a three-year-old, to this win for trainers Jay and Jean Wood.

           

In the championship, the reigning world champion CH Heirs Town stood out among the crowd for the win. Alice Unger maneuvered him to perfection in this class. So Fortunate is owned and exhibited by Janene Becker and placed second in the championship and qualifying class. I'm Dave was a very popular and polished third for his elegant driver, Claudia Gardner Sipp.

           

The show pleasure saddle division had qualifying classes for ages 18-38 and 39 and over, and also classes for junior horses, novice horses and novice riders. The 18-38 division was small this year but found an outstanding winner in Tantara's Battle of Kings with owner/rider Samantha Conlin riding for the blue. The over 39 division was huge with 19 horses showing up for the competition. Corky's Asset and Josephine Musser emerged the winners. Manhattan Starmaker and CH LaGuardia captured the next two ribbons -- novice horse and novice rider, respectively. In the championship, veteran winner CH LaGuardia made an incredible show and took the tricolor back to the Martalock tack room.

           

The Junior Exhibitor Show Pleasure 14-17 class was won by Hard Days Night TS, shown by Kelsey Nicole Smith for Jayne Tillman. The class also featured Lady Suzanne for the Goodmans, Amberwood's Show Stopper, Lightening Anne and many more. In the 13 and under class, Petra's Beyond Belief and Trapp Mountain led the way in the competitive 13-horse class. CH Trapp Mountain and rider Angela Darrow are the 2005 world champions in this division, but had to settle for reserve in the Junior Exhibitor Show Pleasure Championship where Petra's Beyond Belief and rider Mary Salvi made the victory pass.

           
There were two classes for the junior pleasure horses. First For Victory and Reedannland won the first class, but Cody Banks stepped up a little more confidently and  won the championship for Kelly Oselka and team Durant.

           

The country pleasure division was filled with champions and large classes. The Country Pleasure Three-Gaited Adult Championship was undeniably awarded to CH The Shadow Knows. His rider Sherry Frankel-Deal is having the time of her life showing this extraordinary horse. Frankel-Deal's daughter Lindsey Greenwald made some big victory passes of her own with The Paper Boy ERB in the  Amateur Park Championship and qualifier for their SGF Winning Ways Farm.

           

In the Junior Exhibitor Country Pleasure Championship, Lady Poinsettia and Christy Radintz were the winners and Katie Salvi and Another Great Day were reserve. In the first class, the results were reversed.

           

The Brown-Anderson family had their share of winners. CH Callaway's Pretty Penny was the unanimous winner for her wonderful driver Nancy Anderson in both the Country Pleasure Driving Championship and the open class. The Brown-Anderson winning streak continued when Robert Anderson directed Pacifico's Standing Ovation to a unanimous win in the Hackney Harness Pleasure Driving Pony Championship. Both are current World's Champion of Champions.

           

The western horses were impressive. The championship was won by the sleek, black CH Royal Crest's Black Marble, owned and ridden by Tracy Wagner Mitchell. Reserve went to CH The Midnight Express and Barbara Brown.

           

The highlight of the equitation division was the ASHA National Pleasure Equitation 14-17 Championship. This class used to be part of the National Pleasure Horse Show and proudly offered a $5000 scholarship to the winner. Kelsey Nicole Smith is racking up one big national win after another and she swept the boards for this one. Carol and Scott Matton proudly train Kelsey Nicole Smith and Deanna Lanigan, who finished reserve, and Angela Darrow, who finished third! The judging panel tested them well and helped make it an entertaining class.

           

Michelle Krentz rode the beautiful Louisville Lass and executed a precise workout to win the Saddle Seat Equitation Championship. Rachel Machamer rode beautifully and won the Saddle Seat 17 and Under Open class. Machamer is instructed by Lynda Freseth at Hollow Haven.

           

Maya Manilow is turning into a great little horsewoman. She made two competitive rides on her mounts, CF First Light Of Dawn and Beguiled to earn two trips to the winner's circle. She won both the 10 and under equitation championship and her open class.

           

To view complete results click on Show Results.

More Stories

  • A Memorable First Trip To Oklahoma

    Taylor Ladd arrived in Oklahoma to compete for the first time this year, but she had the success of a seasoned veteran. The walk-trot rider left the fairgrounds with two World Championships, one Reserve World Championship, and three Grand National titles under the direction of Taylor River Farm. Read More
  • Highlights from Morgan Grand National

    Enjoy the victory passes and interviews from Oklahoma City on ReporTV! Read More
  • REPORT Leaderboard MGN FINAL

    It's official! The REPORT Leaderboard for the 2017 Morgan Grand National and World Championship Horse Show is final. Wow!  All the hard work all year really paid off! Congratulations to all the winners - blue ribbon and otherwise!

     

    Read More
  • Interview at Sterling Training Center

    In the interview that follows, trainer Katie Mair and owners Mary and Natalie Golota share their thoughts following Katie's win with As Predicted GCH at the Morgan Grand National.  Read More
  • Interview at Cater Stables

    In the interview that follows, trainer Kristen Cater and proud owner Lila Tater share their thoughts following Kristen's victory in Hunter Pleasure with Epona's Mo'O Lio GCH at Morgan Grand National.  Read More
  • Interview at Fire Stables Equestrian

    In the interview that follows, Elaine Galatz, Hannah McBain, Phil Fountain and Julianne Rafferty of Fire Stables Equestrian share their thoughts following a successful Morgan Grand National. Read More
  • REPORT Leaderboard MGN Thru Friday

    With only Saturday's finale performances to go, here's how the blue ribbon counts go in the REPORT Leaderboard through end of day Friday, October 13. Read More
  • A Family Bond

    The Youth of the Year contest tests the skills of young equestrian each year at the Morgan Grand National. Selina Cloutier had the honor of winning this prestigious competition in 1998, and this year, her daughter Clea is competing for the same title. Read More
  • Another Record Breaking Performance

    Morgan Grand National fans were treated to a history making performance on Thursday afternoon as Arcadia, Oklahoma resident Chloe Farischon became the first junior exhibitor to win the World Champion Four-Year-Old English Pleasure title. Read More
  • REPORT Leaderboard MGN Thru Thursday

    It's coming down to the wire and the competition is so close. Check out the REPORT Leaderboard standings as of Thursday, October 12. Read More