Written by: Lauren Baker
Client: National Horse Show http://www.nhs.org
Release Date: 2016-11-04
Lexington, Ky. – Nov. 4, 2016 – The Junior 3’3” Hunter division sponsored by Wrenwood Farms concluded on Friday at the CP National Horse Show, with 13-year-old Mackenzie Altheimer and ABA Hunter Ponies’ Emperador taking home the championship honors. Skyler Fields and her own Echo earned the division’s reserve championship.
Altheimer and Emperador finished first in the classic round and second in the handy on Thursday, returning Friday to collect a blue ribbon in the stake class and the division’s championship tricolor.
“It’s really cool to win this championship,” Altheimer said. “The courses were really good for him; he’s really straight forward. All the jumps came up well for me, and the handy was really good because I could show off his turns. It worked out really well for us.”
Altheimer said she got Emperador as a 5-year-old. She has been riding the gelding for two years, and said this is the pair’s first season competing at indoors.
“He’s my first horse,” Altheimer explained. “I worked with him from when he was green until now, and we’ve been through many ups and downs together. I was really nervous at Harrisburg, but I think I got all my nerves out there.”
For 2017, Altheimer said she plans to show at the 3’6” level and in the equitation. The young rider began showing Emperador in the 3’6” this summer, but decided to finish her year gaining experience at in the 3’3”.
“Competing here at the National Horse Show was my last goal of the year,” Altheimer said. “I have a sheet with my goals on it in my tack trunk, so I can cross that one off. This show is the best of the best. Everyone is so nice here, and it is such a cool horse show. It could not have been done without Emperador, my trainers and my parents.”
The ASPCA Maclay National Championship will kick off at 6 a.m. on Saturday, with other highlight classes including Saturday’s $250,000 Longines FEI World CupTM Jumping Lexington CSI4*-W, and Sunday’s $30,000 USEF Under 25 National Championship.