Lexington, Ky. – Nov. 1, 2017 – The professional hunters returned Wednesday to the Alltech Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park to vie for championship titles at the 2017 CP National Horse Show. The morning began with the under saddle portion of competition and led into the hunter stake classes for each respective division, where champions were crowned based on combined class points from Tuesday and Wednesday.
The first to step onto the red carpet adorned with a champion ribbon was Lynn Seithel’s Walk The Moon partnered with Daniel Geitner. The pair captured the Goshen Hill Green 3’6″ Hunter division, presented by Ms. Caroline Moran, after winning the handy round on Tuesday and capturing second place in Wednesday’s stake class. Reserve champion was awarded to Dr. Betsee Parker’s Luster with Scott Stewart in the irons, upon claiming wins in the under saddle class and handy round. After Geitner slid into the champion position, ahead of Stewart by one point, Stewart stole the show claiming all remaining professional hunter championships.
Dr. Parker’s Private Life and Stewart claimed their fourth Green Conformation Hunter championship this indoor season, accumulating blue ribbon points in the model, handy and stake class to win the Muriel Klein Lens Challenge Trophy and the “Call You Raise You” Challenge Trophy. Although the Dutch Warmblood is only 6 years old, he is already proving his potential, claiming the same title with Stewart at the Washington International Horse Show, the Pennsylvania National Horse Show and Capital Challenge Horse Show. Havens Schatt and JT Farm’s Playmaker finished as the reserve champions.
Stewart kept with his winning rhythm aboard William Hill, owned by Gochman Sport Horse LLC, building on Tuesday’s classic and handy win to claim the tricolor ribbon in the Oare & Adikes-Hill Green 3’9″ Hunter division, presented by Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Oare and Ms. Patricia Adikes-Hill. Schatt picked up another reserve champion ribbon with Tracy Scheriff-Muser’s Aristocrat.
Most impressive was Stewart’s championship performance aboard Dr. Parker’s Lucador as the pair won four out of the division’s five classes to earn the winning title for the High Performance Conformation Hunter division, sponsored and presented by the Wheeler family, ultimately earning the Grand Champion Professional Hunter title and the “Isgilde” Challenge Trophy for the third time. The trophy has now been retired after it was also earned by Stewart and “Luke” in 2014 and 2015. In addition, the duo was awarded the Cold Harbor Dr. Betsee Parker Perpetual Cup, the German Challenge Trophy and the Ken Berkley Perpetual Cup. Reserve champions Outshine and Kathryn Haley were the only pair to steal a class away from Lucador, winning Tuesday’s classic over fences round.
Stewart wrapped up the professional hunter championships with Catch Me, owned by Gochman Sport Horse LLC, claiming the Judith Murch High Performance Hunter division, presented by the Corrigan family and Winners Circle Trailer Sales. The 10-year-old Holsteiner gelding received the win in the handy round with Stewart as well as the under saddle class with Amanda Derbyshire, earning the “A Million Reasons” Perpetual Bowl. Olympic Fire and Jennifer Hannan claimed Wednesday’s stake class and reserve championship.
Upon winning four out of five professional hunter division championships, Stewart was awarded the title of Leading Hunter Rider for the 11th time at the National Horse Show, earning the Sherri Crawford Leading Hunter Rider Award and Leading Hunter Rider Challenge Trophy.
The amateur-owner divisions followed with Copper Fox LLC’s Moonwalk and Kendall Meijer capturing the stake class in the Woodland Way, Inc. Amateur-Owner 18–35 3’3″ Hunter division, presented by Ms. Margaret O’Meara, to claim the championship tricolor. Stephanie Danhakl and her own Enough Said finished with the reserve championship.
Virginia Fout rode her own Carma to the top spot in both the stake and under saddle classes on Wednesday to finish as the Meralex Farm and Hunt Ltd. Amateur-Owner Over 35 3’3″ Hunter division, presented by Ms. Bryan Baldwin and Ms. Gretchen Hunt, champions, while Seithel rode her own Walk The Line to the reserve championship.
Catch Me kept in winning fashion for owner Becky Gochman, earning blue ribbons in the over fences and under saddle classes of the Amateur-Owner Over 35 Hunter division ahead of Thursday’s championship. In the Amateur-Owner Under 35 division, sponsored and presented by Suzanne Thoben Marquard, Technicolor and Lindsay Maxwell rode to the win in Wednesday’s over fences round, while Kelly Tropin and Chablis claimed the under saddle class.
On Thursday, hunter competition will continue with the amateur-owner and junior hunter divisions beginning at 7 a.m.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Scott Stewart – 2017 CP National Horse Show Leading Hunter Rider
On Catch Me:
“He was awesome. I’ve only shown him throughout the year a little bit, mostly in Florida. He did Capital Challenge and he was good and Becky [Gochman] was champion, but he hasn’t shown since then. This is the biggest he’s jumped all year. He was really great.”
On William Hill:
“I show him sporadically throughout the year. He mostly does the amateurs with Becky [Gochman]. He was champion at Capital Challenge as well. He’s a very easy horse to ride.”
“He’s fresh on the first day every year here pretty much. That’s a little bit just his character. We call him ‘Luke’ in the barn.”
On Private Life:
“He was champion at Devon, Capital Challenge, Harrisburg and Washington this year. He’s been very consistent and just great. Ken [Berkley] and I owned him and Betsee [Parker] bought him after his Pre-Green year right before WEF last year. He’s one of the easiest ones to ride. The others have some quirks, but he really doesn’t have any quirks about him. He’s very straightforward.”
On winning the Leading Hunter Rider Challenge Trophy for the 11th time:
“It’s awesome. It feels great, obviously. I just want to try to keep doing it. I’m lucky enough to have such nice horses and owners. We already have some more horses ready for next year.”
Daniel Geitner – Goshen Hill Green 3’6″ Hunter division champion
On Walk The Moon’s progression:
“He was champion in the Pre-Green division at Harrisburg last year. He has been fantastic and continues to jump better and better. He really shined here with the bright jumps and the footing. The course here has also allowed him to really show himself off with a lot of galloping, long runs to the two strides and oxers. That all enabled me to let him really jump! He did the amateur-owners yesterday with Lynn [Seithel] and will do the same today. That is what is so nice about him, he is easy on himself and you don’t ever have to worry about him.”
On the hunt for the division championship:
“It was a really close race. There were four or five of us at the end that easily could have stepped up and been champion, which keeps it exciting.”
Lynn Seithel – Walk The Moon’s owner
On when she bought him:
“I purchased [Walk The Moon] in August 2015 as a 5-year-old. He started with the Pre-Greens in December 2015 and began competing in the 3’3″ with Daniel [Geitner] shortly after that. We were able to show him in the amateur-owners at his second show because he is super easy!”
On having him live at home:
“I ride him five times a week at home because he lives with me. I just try and keep him fit enough for Daniel. He is used to being ridden late in the evening when I get home from work and I enjoy taking long hacks around my farm with him on Sundays. I live on Wadmalaw Island, just outside of Charleston, South Carolina, so we have great scenery and it is a great place for him to relax.”
On competing at the National Horse Show:
“I won twice on Tuesday in the amateur-owners on Walk The Line so it is great to be able to ride here and see my horses compete here.”
Goshen Hill Green 3’6″ Hunter division champion:
Walk The Moon, ridden by Daniel Geitner and owned by Lynn Seithel
Green Conformation Hunter division champion:
Private Life, ridden by Scott Stewart and owned by Dr. Betsee Parker
Oare & Adikes-Hill Green 3’9″ Hunter division champion:
William Hill, ridden by Scott Stewart and owned by Gochman Sport Horse LLC
The Wheeler Family High Performance Conformation Hunter division champion:
Lucador, ridden by Scott Stewart and owned by Dr. Betsee Parker
Judith Murch High Performance Hunter division champion:
Catch Me, ridden by Scott Stewart and owned by Gochman Sport Horse LLC
Woodland Way, Inc. Amateur-Owner 18–35 3’3″ Hunter division champion:
Moonwalk, ridden by Kendall Meijer and owned by Copper Fox LLC
Meralex Farm and Hunt Ltd. Amateur-Owner Over 35 3’3″ Hunter division champion:
Carma, owned and ridden by Virginia Fout
Laura Kraut and Whitney Race to Victory in $35,000 International Open Jumpers Welcome Speed CSI4*
International jumper competition kicked off at the CP National Horse Show on Wednesday evening with Laura Kraut of the United States taking the first jumper win of the week, and the Cavcote Welcome Trophy, aboard St. Bride’s Farm’s Whitney in the $35,000 International Open Jumpers Welcome Speed CSI4*.
Forty-six horses and athletes challenged the one-round speed course designed by Michel Vaillancourt, but only 11 jumped clear with no faults.
Entering the Alltech Arena as 31st in the order-of-go, Kraut and the 14-year-old KWPN mare took over the top spot from Devin Ryan (USA) and his own Cooper in 61.020 seconds to secure the win.
Ryan and Cooper followed in second place in 61.520 seconds, while Great Britain’s Amanda Derbyshire and Gochman Sport Horse LLC’s Lady Maria BH rounded out the top three in 62.740 seconds.
Kraut, who is currently the leading female rider in the world in the Longines Rankings, will compete at the National Horse Show all week, riding Confu in Thursday’s $130,000 CP Grand Prix International Open Jumpers CSI4*-W to qualify for Saturday’s $250,000 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Lexington CSI4*-W. Whitney will also compete with Kraut again in Friday’s Salamander Hotels and Resorts $35,000 Accumulator Class.
The 2017 CP National Horse Show will highlight the $250,000 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Lexington CSI4*-W on Saturday, Nov. 4, at 7 p.m. followed by a concert with the Original Wailers. Sunday, Nov. 5, will also feature the final round of the ASPCA Maclay National Championship with the flat phase beginning at 1 p.m.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Laura Kraut – $35,000 International Open Jumpers Welcome Speed CSI4* winner
On the competitive class:
“I brought Whitney to do this class. Last week [at Washington] I had one down in every class. Devin Ryan made it difficult for me today, and I wasn’t sure if I could beat him, but it all worked out.”
On winning at the National Horse Show:
“It feels really good! I love the National Horse Show and I am really excited to be back and win the first class. Sadly, Whitney’s owners are not here but hopefully they were able to watch it on the live stream.”
“She is a wonderful horse and has tons of experience. She won a ton with Ramiro Quintana, who rode her before, and knows the ropes. When she is feeling on top this is the perfect class for her because she loves being competitive.”
On being the top female rider in the world:
“I am surprised to be the top female in the world but I am very happy about that! Obviously, I would prefer to be the top rider in the world but it is good. I don’t focus on ranking too much because, for me, no matter how important it is to you, it doesn’t make you try more or less. You have to do what is right for your horses.”
On her next competition:
“Next week I go to Doha for the [Longines Global Champions Tour] finale. I have two horses who have been there that Nick [Skelton] has been riding and I will fly from here to there.”
$35,000 International Open Jumpers Welcome Speed CSI4*:
Place / Horse / Rider / Country / Owner / Total Faults / Time
1. Whitney / Laura Kraut / USA / St. Bride’s Farm / 0 / 61.020
2. Cooper / Devin Ryan / USA / Devin Ryan / 0 / 61.520
3. Lady Maria BH / Amanda Derbyshire / GBR / Gochman Sport Horse LLC / 0 / 62.040
4. Cocq A Doodle / Andrew Ramsay / USA / The Doodle Group / 0 / 64.210
5. Tarioso Manciais / Katherine Dinan / USA / Grant Road Partners LLC / 0 / 64.720
6. Igor Van De Heibos / Tracy Fenney / USA / MTM Farm / 0 / 65.470
7. Dicas / Margie Engle / USA / Storm Ridge Capital, Showhorses LLC, Gladewinds & Garber / 0 / 70.260
8. Indra Van De Oude Heihoef / Shane Sweetnam / IRL / The Blue Buckle Group / 0 / 72.540
9. Volage Du Val Henry / Jessica Springsteen / USA / SCEA Elevage De Voise / 0 / 72.710
10. Coriandolo Di Ribano / Lauren Tisbo / USA / Tequestrian Farms, LLC / 0 / 73.590
11. Pembroke / Adrienne Sternlicht / USA / Starlight Farms 1 LLC / 0 / 76.420
12. Hilfiger Van De Olmenhoeve / Emily Moffitt / GBR / Poden Farms / 1 / 78.730
With $810,000 in prize money offered, this year’s CP National Horse Show has been designated a CSI4*-W event by the FEI. International Open Jumpers will compete for almost half a million dollars in prize money, while the top-rated hunter sections will vie for a total purse of $195,000. For six consecutive years, the National Show Hunter Hall of Fame has named the CP National Horse Show the Horse Show of the Year.
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