Copper Fox, LLC Welcomed Back as 2020 Great Lakes Equestrian Festival Sponsor of $25,000 International Hunter Derby

Traverse City, Mich. – Feb. 10, 2020 – The Traverse City Horse Shows management team is pleased to once again welcome back Copper Fox, LLC to the list of Great Lakes Equestrian Festival (GLEF), presented by CaptiveOne Advisors, LLC, sponsors for the 2020 summer series. A distinguished equestrian sales business based out of Michigan, Copper Fox, LLC is a perfect fit for the popular Midwest show as its team includes longtime GLEF exhibitors that are passionate about the hunter discipline. The organization will reprise its role as the presenting sponsor of one of the most highly-anticipated events the six-week circuit has to offer, the $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby during Week IV of GLEF.

Jacob Pope won the 2019 $25,000 International Hunter Derby, presented by Copper Fox, LLC, on Last Word. Photo: Andrew Ryback Photography

“Copper Fox, LLC has been an integral supporter of the Great Lakes Equestrian Festival for multiple years, and we are especially happy that they started as exhibitors and loved the show so much that they wanted to support it officially,” commented Matt Morrissey, Event Director of Traverse City Horse Shows. “It is important to the Traverse City team that we can provide sponsors with opportunities to support what matters to them most, and Copper Fox, LLC is a perfect example of that as avid hunter competitors and the International Derby sponsors.”

In past years, the $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, sponsored by Copper Fox, LLC, has seen talented competitors take the stage in the Grand Prix Arena to impress top-rated judges. Some of these well-known riders have included Victoria Colvin, Peter Pletcher, Kelli Cruciotti-Vanderveen and Jacob Pope. In 2019, Pope took the victory aboard Last Word and also claimed second place aboard Unbelievable, while Pletcher led the victory gallop with Quintessential in 2018. Thanks to Copper Fox, LLC’s support, some of the country’s most skilled hunter athletes will once again have an opportunity to vie for the top prize.

Kendall Meijer of Copper Fox, LLC. Photo: Andrew Ryback Photography

“Born and raised in Michigan, I have a particularly fondness for GLEF, and I love that I don’t have to travel too far from home to participate in and support my favorite horse show of the year. Traverse City is like a second home to me, and I enjoy spending time there every summer thanks to the horse show and everything the town has to offer. Now that the show has added two more weeks in June, I get to stay there even longer!” remarked Kendall Meijer of Copper Fox, LLC. “As a hunter competitor myself, it is a natural partnership for us to sponsor GLEF through the $25,000 International Hunter Derby, which I personally find to be the most exciting hunter event of the entire circuit. Good luck to everyone this summer and see you at the ring!”

Since officially joining the GLEF team in 2018, Copper Fox, LLC has been a staple benefactor, each year sponsoring the $25,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, an ideal fit for the farm given Meijer’s passion for the discipline. Focused mainly on the business of buying and selling high-quality hunters and jumpers through the production of elite show horses, the Copper Fox, LLC team is comprised of Meijer, Hillary Johnson and Cathy Johnson. Hailing from Grand Rapids, Mich., Meijer is a top amateur rider who has excelled to the top level of amateur riding, competing mainly in the Amateur-Owner and Adult Hunter divisions with various Copper Fox horses. A professional rider and trainer, Hillary trains the younger up-and-coming horses at Copper Fox LLC through the professional hunter ranks, having earned notable achievements across the country. After previously training both Meijer and Hillary, Cathy continues to work with daughter Hillary to plan the training and show programs as well as use her keen ability to spot talent and potential in young horses.

Hillary Johnson of Copper Fox, LLC. Photo: Andrew Ryback Photography

Both Kendall and Hillary have achieved great heights under the Copper Fox, LLC banner at prestigious competitions in the United States. A highlight of Kendall’s career is the 2017 Championship in the 3’3″ Amateur-Owner Younger division at the National Horse Show on Moonwalk. With Hillary aboard, Copper Fox, LLC horses have won the 2016 High Score Green Hunter at the Washington International Horse Show, plus National Horse of the Year in the Second Year Green division.

Exhibitors can expect to face stiff competition from the Copper Fox, LLC horse-and-rider combinations that will be on-site at Flintfields Horse Park this summer during both the Traverse City Spring Horse Show, which takes place June 11-21, as well as the Great Lakes Equestrian Festival throughout July and early August. Hunter exhibitors will be excited to know that the circuit will offer a National Hunter Derby for each of the six weeks of GLEF, plus Week II of the series is designated as a World Champion Hunter Rider (WCHR) week, where riders can obtain points for the end-of-the-year finals.

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