Ocala, Fla. – March 13, 2017 –Each year, the Live Oak International Horse Show brings together the top athletes from show jumping and driving to showcase their skills throughout the world-class competition. Katherine Gallagher, M. Michael Meller and Dan Walsh of E2 Show Jumpers are proud to support the exciting World Cup event. This year, they sponsored the $10,000 E2 Show Jumpers Leading Rider Award and the M. Michael Meller Style of Riding Award.
The M. Michael Meller Style of Riding Award is presented to the rider that exhibits the best combination of horsemanship, skill and presentation while competing. This year, it was Callan Solem who embodied all of those characteristics. Solem has continually earned top placings at shows around the globe, representing the United States during multiple Nations Cup events.
|Michael Meller presents Callan Solem with M. Michael Meller Style Award
“Thanks so much to Michael for this award,” said Solem after the presentation. He’s such a huge supporter of this sport. We’re so lucky to have people like him behind all of these different events. It’s a huge asset to the whole industry.”
“Callan is a wonderful person and a genuine horsewoman, always working to get the best out of her mounts,” noted Meller. “She is admired by riders and trainers, and she has an amazing work ethic. She’s a great person to be around and will support you to the very end.”
The $10,000 E2 Show Jumpers Leading Rider Award is presented to the rider who accumulates the highest number of points over the three days of show jumping competition, and this year’s winner was Andre Thieme. The German athlete took placed second in Sunday’s $100,000 Longines FEI World Cup Qualifier Presented by Golden Ocala Golf and Equestrian Club, as well as earning top results in the classes leading up to the highlight event.
|Michael Meller presents Andre Thieme the E2 Show Jumpers Leading Rider Award
“It was a little sad because the last rider in the jump-off caught my time and I place second,” explained Thieme. “For five minutes I was a little sad, but now that I’ve won this award, it feels much better! I still feel like a winner today with this award.”
E2 Show Jumpers would also like to congratulate Gallagher/Meller Sporthorses’ Robin de Ponthual, ridden by Peter Lutz of the United States, who was named the Equis Boutique Best Presented Horse Award winner at the 2017 Live Oak International in Ocala, FL.
Robin de Ponthual, a 12-year-old Selle Français gelding (Elf d’Or x Calypso d’Herbiers) that jumped to a top-20 finish at the 2016 FEI World Cup™ Final in Gothenburg, Sweden, was prepared for competition at the Live Oak International by Chuy Escalera. Robin de Ponthual joined Lutz’s string three years ago, and Escalera has been caring for the horse ever since.
|Chuy Escalera and Peter Lutz accept the Equis Boutique Best Presented Horse Award
for Robin de Ponthual
“Chuy has been with me for almost six years and is very dedicated,” said Lutz. “He loves the horses, takes great care of them, and understands how to prepare for the horse show.
“He is also great in that he helps me as the rider,” continued Lutz. “He knows Robin so well that he has a lot of input on how the horse is feeling. We take pride in the horses looking healthy and well-presented, and make an effort to arrive at the jog like we arrive at the ring, ready to show and do well. We appreciate being acknowledged for that.”
As the season continues, Meller and E2 Show Jumpers continue to support the industry by sponsoring awards at the Dublin Horse Show, the American Gold Cup and the National Horse Show. Founded by Gallagher, Meller and Walsh, the mission of E2 Show Jumpers is to find and produce some of the world’s top young show jumping mounts. For more information please visit E2ShowJumpers.com