Devon, Pa. – May 27, 2017 – Spectators at the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair were on the edge of their seats during Saturday night’s $20,000 Show Jumping Hall of Fame Junior Jumper Classic as course designer Kelvin Bywater put 28 of the nation’s top junior riders to the test. It was a tough battle to the jump-off as only four managed to navigate the course fault-free and move on to compete in the tie-breaking round. In the end, it was Madison Goetzmann who took the win, while Friday night’s winner, Coco Fath, walked away with the coveted Junior Jumper Championship.
Goetzmann and her own Prestigious kicked off the jump-off round fault-free, setting the pace to beat at a quick 38.300 seconds. Caitlyn Connors riding Bink-A, owned by Caitlyn Connors LLC, followed but couldn’t quite catch Goetzmann, finishing fault-free in 43.08 seconds. The third rider to enter the ring was Fath aboard Hillside Farm LLC’s Huckleberry. Fath and the 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding were quick, but not quick enough to surpass Goetzmann, finishing in 39.002 seconds.
Brian Moggre was the fourth and final rider to tackle the jump-off, but collected 4 faults and stopped the timers in 36.505 seconds. Goetzmann ultimately finished with the quickest time to earn Saturday night’s win. Second place was awarded to Fath, with third going to Connors and Moggre rounding out the top four.
Combining Friday night’s win and Saturday’s top finish, 16-year-old Fath of Fairfield, Connecticut, clinched the Junior Jumper Championship as well as the Leading Junior Jumper Rider Award, presented by Capital Grille King of Prussia, earning the most points overall and showcasing her consistency throughout Junior Weekend at Devon.
In addition, Goetzmann was awarded the Junior Jumper Reserve Championship.
The Shalanno Style of Riding Award, presented by Shalanno Farm LLC, went to Taylor St. Jacques aboard her own Qantar Des Etisses.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Coco Fath – 2017 Junior Jumper Champion
On Saturday’s class and Huckleberry:
“I was thinking he might be a little tired after yesterday but he was on his game. He was so ready to go. I could not have asked for a better horse. Every single jump he was there with me. It was perfect.”
On her strategy for the jump-off:
“I just wanted to be competitive and come in and do the inside turns. I’m still a little bit green on the jump-off side so I wanted to have a nice jump-off and go clear and hopefully win. [Madison Goetzmann] was amazing so I was still really happy with tonight’s result!”
On training with Molly Ashe Cawley:
“I’ve been training with her for over a year and a half. She’s given me a lot of confidence. I was thinking I could never move up to the highs and she really gave me the confidence and the skills to be able to do an event like this. She’s just been an amazing supporter of my career so far.”
On her goals for this summer:
“This summer I’m heading to Europe to place and possibly get some top ribbons in the 2* grand prix events there. I’d like to move up in the jumpers, ride some young ones and just improve my riding this summer. That’s my short-term goal.”
On concluding Junior Weekend at Devon with the Junior Jumper Championship:
“It was a little bit of a rough start on Thursday. I’m beyond ecstatic, I could not have asked for anything better. My horses were amazing. They really helped me, every single one. I could not be happier. It was just a great weekend and everything got better as it went and I was really happy with it.”
Madison Goetzmann – 2017 Junior Jumper Reserve Champion
On winning Saturday’s $20,000 Show Jumping Hall of Fame Junior Jumper Classic:
“It’s an amazing win. I got the Devon blue this year, which I’m very happy about. It’s obviously a very prestigious event and I’m honored to be competing here. To have this win under my belt is definitely a nice feeling.”
On her plan for the jump-off:
“I went first in the jump-off so our strategy was to be prompt but smooth — don’t do anything out of control. I went in there and my horse was perfect. He made very tight turns, stayed very light and he jumped amazing. I could not have asked for a better horse in that jump-off.”
“We just recently bought him in December and we’ve been working very slowly with him. He’s an incredible horse that has a lot of scope, and his ride is a little different for me from what I’m used to so it’s taking me a little longer to click with him. These last few months, our partnership has definitely developed. The last week of March we just started doing 1.45m classes, and we’ve been consistently doing that. We’re going to Spruce Meadows next week so hopefully I can keep stepping up and working on our partnership. I hope to be jumping national grand prix events with him in the future.”
$20,000 Show Jumping Hall of Fame Junior Jumper Classic:
Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / Round One Faults / Time / Round Two Faults / Time
1. Prestigious / Madison Goetzmann / Madison Goetzmann / 0 / 83.579 / 0 / 38.300
2. Huckleberry / Coco Fath / Hillside Farm, LLC / 0 / 79.057 / 0 / 39.003
3. Bink-A / Caitlyn Connors / Caitlyn Connors, LLC / 0 / 83.881 / 0 / 43.080
4. Condero 3 / Brian Moggre / DDM Equestrian, LLC / 0 / 80.407 / 4 / 36.505
5. Paola 233 / Emily Perez / Emily Perez / 4 / 77.578
6. Shaq / Kaitlyn Williams / Ramble On Farm / 4 / 78.307
7. Qantar Des Etisses / Taylor St. Jaques / Taylor St. Jaques / 4 / 78.540
8. Alberto II / Daisy Farish / Stoney Ridge Farm, LLC / 4 / 78.994
9. Caretina III / Giavanni Rinaldi / Haylie Rolfe / 4 / 80.832
10. For Jef VD Wezelse / Briley Koerner / BKS Horse Farms, LLC / 4 / 80.940
Sophie Gochman and Garfield Crowned Devon Grand Junior Hunter Champions
Gochman Sport Horses LLC’s Garfield has been a familiar face throughout the years showcasing his style and natural athleticism in the hunter ring with multiple riders, and in his typical fashion, the chestnut gelding impressed the judges to take home the 2017 Devon Grand Junior Hunter Champion title with his current rider, Sophie Gochman.
It’s safe to say that the 15-year-old Holsteiner knows his job and does it well, allowing his riders to enter the ring confident that he is ready to give it his all no matter what. Garfield’s smooth way of going coupled with his solid temperament in the ring make him the ideal Junior Hunter mount.
Gochman acknowledged that her trainers at River’s Edge Farm, Scott Stewart and Ken Berkeley, paired her up with Garfield knowing that he would be a great first mount for her in the 3’6″ hunter division. The duo has been an excellent match since their partnership began just six months ago.
In addition to the enormous honor of being crowned Devon Grand Junior Hunter Champion, Garfield also earned the Martin F. Bucko Family Perpetual Trophy and the Ovation Perpetual Trophy with Gochman in the irons. Garfield was honored further with the Overall Large Junior Hunter title and the Lestat Memorial Challenge Trophy.
Emma Kurtz was presented with the 1902 Edward T. Stotesbury Perpetual Trophy for Best Child Rider after her performances in the Junior Hunters riding Popish Farm LLC’s Due West, Dr. Betsee Parker’s Dedication and Grace Debney’s Wisdom.
Kurtz and Wisdom achieved the Overall Small Junior Hunter title after putting forth seamless rounds in their competitive division.
Dedication achieved The Angelo Award, which is given to the horse who best exemplifies the classic hunter in movement, jumping style and presence.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Sophie Gochman and Garfield
On competing in the Junior Hunters for the first time at the Devon Horse Show:
“I did the ponies for 13 years so it was fun to try something new at Devon this year. My horses are just great and I’m having such a good time.”
“Garfield is the best. You basically just drop the reins and steer and he finds the distances for you. We have been with him for about six months — since indoors. He’s just the best, I love him so much. With Garfield, I’m always really confident. I know that if we mess up, it’s probably my fault. He’s been everywhere so you know he’s always going to be on his game and be the best.”
On the Devon Horse Show:
“He loves this show. He was definitely on it today. He was jumping so well and he’s such a good boy. This is my favorite horse show. I love the fair and I also love the pony hunt teams. That’s one of my favorite parts of the show along with the crowds and overall excitement — it’s such an honor to be here.”
Alexa Lignelli Dominates Pony Hunter Divisions at Devon
In the Gold Ring, the Wizard of Oz Perpetual Trophy was awarded to the Devon Grand Pony Hunter champion. Small, medium and large pony hunter riders competed for top honors, but it was Alexa Lignelli of New York, New York, and her small pony hunter, iParty, who ultimately earned the trophy.
Lignelli and the flashy 9-year-old Half Welsh mare earned themselves a first, two seconds, a third, fourth and a fifth throughout the Small Pony Hunter division, accumulating a total of 28.5 points over the course of the two-day competition, to claim the Small Pony Hunter championship.
In addition, Lignelli also captured the Small Pony Hunter reserve championship aboard her own Rollingwoods Knee Deep. Lignelli continued her winning streak by earning the Best Child Rider on a Pony award.
Augusta Iwasaki and Forget Me Not Farm’s Unforgettable took home the Medium Pony Hunter championship, with the reserve championship going to Sofia Roberts and Roberts Stables LLC’s Rock Star.
The Large Pony Hunter grand championship was awarded to Stella Wasserman riding her own Spellbound, with reserve champion going to Mia Albelo and Libbie Gordon’s Child’s Play Hot Topic.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Alexa Lignelli and iParty
“I’ve been riding [iParty] for two years. She loves hunter courses that are really smooth. The handy rounds today really fit her. She’s very smooth to ride, but you have to have the right pace.”
On the Devon Horse Show:
“I came here last year just to get a feel for the ring and then this year we decided to come again. I love the fair — it’s very fun and the lemon sticks are amazing!”