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Youngsters Shine at TASHA Winter Classic

By: Becky Taggart & Ann Bullard

Katy, TX – The TASHA Winter Classic, held at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center Jan. 29 and 30, is a great place for academy riders and young horses to take center stage. Madge Bass, of Mount Washington, KY, handled the judging duties for all classes. Attending trainers made good use of this opportunity to get such teams the show ring experience that will see them through to the bigger shows to come.

Ready or Nut, and her teenage rider, Hannah Houske got everyone cheering. They gave us quite a taste of what they have planned for this year. This exciting three year old was bought at the UPHA Incentive Sale and trainers Milo Jones and Koren Mercer of Lone Star Saddlebreds had smiles all around.

Neartown Animal Clinic’s Until Next Time, with Sandy Currier in the irons, won the Junior/Novice Walk and Trot Only. This pair, which made their debut under saddle at the TASHA Holiday show in December, demonstrated just how far they have come.

Corrine Stith, also from Lone Star Saddlebreds, returned to the show ring after almost a year, and debuted her new pleasure driving horse, Late Last Night. They won reserve in both the Show Pleasure Driving qualifier and the Championship. Stith is known for her great country pleasure driving horse, Screen Idol, who Sharon and Henry Moritz purchased for their daughter, Jenifer. Koren Mercer had the Moritz girls, Karla and Jenifer, in great shape and mom, Sharon, was on the rail cheering them on.

Bluebonnet Farm and Sandy Currier are mainstays on the Texas show circuit and took the lead in many classes here. Ed Perwien owns and raised many of the winners here including Country Pleasure Driving Champion, IPod, with Perwien in the cart for the qualifier and daughter Elly Berman for the Championship. Keeping it all in the family, both Kevin and Elly Berman showed Albert Kaponey for grandmother and mother Ada Perwien who owns this great pony with Kevin. Kevin won the Single Roadster Pony to Bike-Amateur and Elly won the Championship. Currier coached popular exhibitor, Mary Alice Conroy, to win the Adult Three-Gaited Show Pleasure qualifier with her newest acquisition, CH My Southern Charm.

May and Steve Chadick’s Vantage Point Farm has some interesting new combinations housed at their new barn in Katy. Cindy Kolmeier and Spend the Night debuted in a new division, winning both the Show Pleasure Driving qualifier and Championship with style. Paige DeHaven debuted on her Hokie Pokie Man, getting a reserve in the Walk and Trot Only – Novice Horse after Steve Chadick showed him to the Open Park blue. Cynthia Vance was all smiles with both of her horses coming back with blue ribbons. Fox Grape’s Patent Pending won the Junior Five-Gaited title and It’s Your Thing won the Park Pleasure Junior Horse competition. Sydney Young was the star of the academy program at Vantage Point, winning three of her four Walk and Trot Classes.

Leslie O’Conner, who heads the academy program at Dan Flowers’ Miracle Farm, received a lot of attention. They brought eight riders that kept O’Conner running back and forth to pick up ribbons. Cristina Lara and Grace Burgert shared Lexington Dark Alley to dominate the Adult academy classes. Vanity’s Worthy Son carried Cherryl Young, Christina Jordan and Lauren Germanow to some great prizes as well. Flowers stayed busy getting his performance horses in the ring. Chris Tresten and It’s Wing Ka-Hammer won the Amateur Five-Gaited and Championship, Virtual Design and Amy Hunter won the Five-Gaited Show Pleasure and was reserve in the Championship and Flower’s himself won the Open Five-Gaited on Nancy Moreno’s It’s East Wing.

Marjorie Judd came from Baton Rouge, LA, and had a winning weekend. Daughter Ashley showed Americana’s Wings taking both the Junior Exhibitor Three-Gaited Show Pleasure qualifier and the Three-Gaited Show Pleasure Championship. Judd also brought a number of academy riders. Anna Lynn Brown and Isabelle Breaux shared I Made You Look and were first and second in the Academy Advance Rider 11-17 in both the equitation and performance divisions.

Bill Marple has the best looking groom at any horse show in wife Sandy; she had Kalarama’s Shooting Star and Texas Sky in great order. Nicole Foster carried four trophies along with two blue ribbons and two tricolors back for the Marples to hang on the Foster Farm tack room.

Ribbons also hung from David McCoy Stables and S.G.F. Winning Ways tack rooms from both performance and academy horses.

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