Show World

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Preparing For Pony Finals 2015

June 29, 2015 By: janwest Category: General

Every pony rider's dream — Sydney Flashman and barn mate, Mara Chemerinsky, the afternoon before Pony Finals began. (Photo courtesy of Sydney Flashman)

Every pony rider’s dream — Sydney Flashman and barn mate, Mara Chemerinsky, the afternoon before Pony Finals 2014 began. (Photo courtesy of Sydney Flashman)

By Sydney Flashman

U.S. National Pony Finals. Every pony rider’s dream. The most prestigious event available to any equestrian under 18 who’s partner in the ring is a four-legged beast under 14.2 hands. In my opinion, the best show ever.

The venue is gorgeous, the judges are reputable, the ponies are fancy and each and every rider competing in the finals is talented.

The gorgeous venue — the Walnut Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park. (Photo courtesy of Sydney Flashman)

The gorgeous venue — the Walnut Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park.
(Photo courtesy of Sydney Flashman)

The competition itself is extremely difficult — the Walnut Arena, where the ponies compete, is only open to ponies the week of Pony Finals and only for hacking. There is never a chance to jump in the ring, and the ponies see the jumps for the first time when they start the course. The huge arena is surrounded by people watching, golf carts zipping along the road and ponies waiting to enter the ring for their one and only jumping round. One side of the ring is lined with waving flags — perfect for a pony to spook at on a windy day. To add to the busy scene, rain falls from the Kentucky skies at random intervals, introducing yet another challenge the skillful ponies and riders must face while attempting to complete a perfect course. It is the experience of a lifetime, no matter where a rider places.

For some, Pony Finals is a career changing event — winning a class or division at Pony Finals guarantees that the entire pony community will know your name. A pony could go from an adorable member of the barn family, not well known but well loved, to a pony recognized and loved by hundreds, even thousands of riders from across the country.

The calm before the storm — the Walnut Arena, where the ponies compete, early the morning of the first day of competition. (Photo courtesy of Sydney Flashman)

The calm before the storm — the Walnut Arena, where the ponies compete, early the morning of the first day of competition. (Photo courtesy of Sydney Flashman)

To win a class or division at Pony Finals is extremely difficult. Many riders go just hoping to have fun. Of course everyone wants to do well, but when there are 80 plus ponies in your class, you have to be absolutely perfect to be on the top of the podium, or even to place. Yes, you get four chances to ribbon and are offered many other awards — the top ten scorers in the model, under saddle and over fences classes earn ribbons, and ribbons through twentieth are provided to the overall high scorers in each division. Everything from sportsmanship awards, awards based on a pony’s birthplace or breeding, even awards for the best turned out pony are offered. If one does extremely well in their division, they may be in the running for the Overall Grand Pony Champion or Overall Grand Green Pony Champion award, which is given to the highest scoring green and rated pony at the show.

But even with all of the awards offered, it is very difficult to do well as many ponies at Pony Finals have it all — they are great in the model, they move beautifully and they jump a 10. With so many quality ponies, it is difficult to stand out, even if your pony is a triple threat. And even in the greens, a division for inexperienced ponies, one can find at least one example of a “green pony” that simply has more show experience than the others or one that refuses to be spooked by anything, even the chaos of Pony Finals. But 20 young riders in each division come home with more than fun memories from the experience of a lifetime — one or more rosettes from Pony Finals, earned by being a member of the top 20 overall in their division or divisions, and any ribbons earned from between the model, the first class, and the jumping round, the last.

Sydney Flashman riding Alliance Bowregard at HITS Thermal. (Photo courtesy of Sydney Flashman)

Sydney Flashman riding Alliance Bowregard at HITS Thermal.
(Photo courtesy of Sydney Flashman)

That’s where I come in. My name is Sydney Flashman, and I’m from Zone 10 — California. I compete in both the pony jumpers and pony hunters, but at Pony Finals 2015, I’ll be returning to Pony Finals for a second time; this  year on a Small Green Pony Hunter, Alliance Bowregard (Bo), and possibly a Large Green Pony Hunter named Miss Penny Lane, known around the barn as Nala. I will also be competing in the USEF Pony Medal Finals, but I have yet to choose my mount. With enough practice, determination, dedication and luck, I can bring home a ribbon or two from both divisions and do well in the Pony Medal.

EEM Announces Longines as Title Partner for Masters Series on Three Continents

June 24, 2015 By: janwest Category: General

EEM is proud to announce that Longines will become the official title partner of the Longines Masters series on three continents. (Photo courtesy of EEM)

EEM is proud to announce that Longines will become the official title partner of the Longines Masters series on three continents. (Photo courtesy of EEM)

American Leg Will Kick Off the 2015/2016 Longines Masters Series as the World’s Best Show Jumpers Converge in Los Angeles October 1st to 4th to Compete for Over $1 Million

LOS ANGELES, CA (June 24, 2015) – EEM is proud to announce that the Swiss watchmaker Longines will become the official title partner of the Longines Masters series on three continents, with elite equestrian events in Europe, Asia and America. The Longines Masters of Los Angeles will kick off the 2015/2016 series as the world’s top show jumpers and equine athletes compete for $1 million in prize money at the Los Angeles Convention Center October 1st to 4th.

Last year’s inaugural event was a tremendous success and immediately rated as the number one indoor show jumping competition according to the North American Riders Group. The Longines Masters of Los Angeles will once again bring together 30,000 spectators for four unforgettable days of top-level equestrian sport, heart-pounding emotion, and an unparalleled class of entertainment and glamour.

Tickets to this must-attend event can now be purchased at Longines Masters of Los Angeles to witness each day’s key class highlighting a different aspect of the sport.

Friday showcases speed with the Longines Speed Challenge, considered to be the world’s fastest class. Created in 2010 by EEM, it puts the speed, agility, power and precision of the riders and horses center stage. Faults are less heavily penalized than usual, giving free rein to speed, and resulting in an intense and highly entertaining race against the clock.

Saturday is the day of glamour, entertainment and generosity with the Gucci Gold Cup and the Charity Pro-Am Style and Competition, in which riders and celebrities dress up to raise money for charity partners. Each team will be judged on the number of penalties over the fences, the team’s style and elegance, as well as the horse’s style. Last year, the competition featured celebrity riders including Kaley Cuoco, Jessica Springsteen, Jennifer Gates, and Hannah Selleck, as well as Olympic champions such as Laura Kraut, Rodrigo Pessoa, Beezie Madden, Los Angeles rider Will Simpson, and many more.

Sunday is about elite performances with the Longines Grand Prix, an Olympic-level class with a course featuring jumps up to 1.60m in height, rounding off the second edition of the Longines Masters of Los Angeles.  This Grand Prix will be particularly important for legendary British rider John Whitaker, who won the Asian leg of the circuit, the Longines Grand Prix of Hong Kong, and now has the chance of going home with the €500,000 Grand Slam bonus if he wins the Los Angeles Grand Prix as well.

Alongside the major classes, the Masters will also welcome the USA’s best junior, amateur and professional riders for the Prestige Trophy and Invitational Trophy classes, where the stars of tomorrow will rub shoulders with world champions of today.

In addition to the competition, spectators can attend a magnificent dressage exhibition and Master Classes given by the best international riders, dine on refined cuisine from two Michelin-star chef Yves Mattagne, and enjoy live music in the exquisite lounge; additionally, they can explore the Prestige Village with its Kids Corner and shops from exclusive international partner brands.

 

About the Longines Masters:

Established in three of the biggest cities — Los Angeles, Paris and Hong Kong — the Longines Masters series is recognized by the FEI Fédération Equestre Internationale and is one of the most prestigious equestrian competitions worldwide. Created by EEM, the concept of the Masters was born in 2009 with the first edition of the Gucci Paris Masters, now renamed the Longines Masters of Paris. Inspired by the Grand Slam tournaments in tennis, the circuit rapidly developed abroad, with the Longines Masters of Hong Kong in 2013 and the Longines Masters of Los Angeles in 2014.

The world’s best riders and horses will compete for one million dollars in prize money at each leg of the series. In addition, any rider who consecutively wins the Longines Grand Prix in Paris, Hong Kong and Los Angeles will be rewarded with one million euros Master Grand Slam Bonus.  For two successive victories, the rider will be awarded €500,000, and winners of two non-successive victories within a series of three Longines Grand Prix will receive a €250,000 bonus.

EEM’s objective is to create emblematic events that showcase the magic of show jumping and put equestrian sport in the international spotlight. These events are broadcast in more than 120 countries and reach almost 550 million viewers. Every edition of the Masters is a monumental event that brings together sports enthusiasts, amateurs, celebrities and corporate decision-makers from around the world, who come to enjoy a unique experience, boasting exceptional sport, entertainment, glamour, gastronomy and contemporary art.

  • Longines Masters of Los Angeles October 1 to 4, 2015
  • Longines Masters of Paris December 3 to 6, 2015
  • Longines Masters of Hong Kong February 19 to 21, 2016

About Longines

Longines has been based in Saint-Imier in Switzerland since 1832. Its watchmaking expertise reflects a strong devotion to tradition, elegance and performance. Longines has generations of experience as the official timekeeper of world championships and as a partner of international sporting federations. Over the years, Longines has established solid, long-term relationships with the sporting world. Renowned for the elegance of its timepieces, Longines is a member of the Swatch Group Ltd., the world’s leading manufacturer of horological products. Using the winged hourglass as its emblem, the brand has outlets in over 140 countries. www.longines.com

About EEM

Reinvent Show Jumping! What an ambitious goal Christophe Ameeuw and his team at EEM have set for themselves! For over ten years they have been dedicated to bringing equestrian sports to the international front stage. Inspired by the Grand Slam in tennis and its legendary tournaments, EEM gathers under one roof the best of the sport, entertainment and glamour.

2009 was a crucial milestone for EEM with the revival of the Jumping de Paris and the creation of the Gucci Paris Masters, as it marked the beginning of their international development. EEM then set off to conquer new continents. An Asian edition took place in Hong Kong in 2013, followed in 2014 by the first American stage of the Longines Masters in Los Angeles. This first edition on the American continent was welcomed by renowned sports channel ESPN with the headline “The Next Big USA Sport.”

In 2015 the intercontinental trilogy becomes the Longines Masters, presented by EEM.

Santa Fe Summer Series Official Program Advertising Opportunity – There is Still Time!

May 27, 2015 By: janwest Category: General

Santa Fe Summer Series official program advertising opportunity — there is still time! (Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

Santa Fe Summer Series official program advertising opportunity — there is still time!
(Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

Would you like to reach several thousand loyal consumers in Santa Fe this summer? Exposure in our program offers a unique marketing opportunity to a demographic that enjoys travel, art and dining, along with equestrian pursuits. Advertisers in the Santa Fe Summer Series Official Souvenir Program reach patrons who are passionate and devoted to the products and services that are supportive of the equestrian lifestyle. Reserve your advertising space today in the Santa Fe Summer Series Horse Show Official Souvenir Program!

The Santa Fe Summer Series Program is a keepsake, magazine-style guide for sponsors, guests and clients who will be attending the Summer Series events during the horse show’s three-week summer run — during the height of tourist season in Santa Fe. Our patrons and sponsors will be spending a great deal of time in Santa Fe this summer, and for many summers in future years.

Advertising art is due June 10, 2015 — so don’t wait to take advantage of this marketing opportunity!

Who attends the Summer Series?

  • Equestrians from Texas, Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, California and even Canada and Mexico, who travel to Santa Fe to compete and often stay for the entire three weeks
  • More than 1,200 trainers, vendors and families who stay in local hotels, dine in restaurants and shop locally
  • Spectators — up to 1,000 each weekend — who love the excitement of high-level equestrian sport
  • Sponsors and horse enthusiasts, who showcase their participation in this prestigious equestrian event by placing the program in their offices and businesses

The event program will feature articles about our exhibitors, a guide to the sport of show-jumping and hunter/jumper competition, profiles of our charitable beneficiaries and the story of the rebirth of the Equicenter de Santa Fe.

The Summer Series Event Program runs July 22–August 5, at Equicenter de Santa Fe, a 137-acre, full service equestrian facility, providing the very best in competition for the hunter/jumper community. A world-class equestrian venue in the beautiful Land of Enchantment, the Equicenter is conveniently located in historic Santa Fe. For more information about the facility or the horse shows, please visit us at: www.equicenterdesantafe.com

Our Event Program Advertising Rates and Specifications can be accessed by CLICKING HERE. Please contact Phyllis Gonzales at phyllis@equicenterdesantafe.com, or call 505-470-3952, for more information about our 2015 Santa Fe Summer Series Event Program.

The Santa Fe Summer Series runs for three weeks:

Santa Fe Welcome Week – July 22–26, 2015
Santa Fe Fiesta – July 29–August 2, 2015
Grand Prix de Santa Fe – August 5–9, 2015

 CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD & PRINT PREMIUM

Competitions include Hunters, Jumpers, Derby and Grand Prix classes. For exhibitor information, please contact Janet Hischer at janet@equicenterdesantefe.com or call 602-463-3223.

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Official Accommodations Partners Announced for the Santa Fe Summer Series 2015

May 25, 2015 By: janwest Category: General

Traveling to a destination horse show has never been more inviting! Santa Fe, known as “The City Different,” offers an array of lodging options showcasing it’s unique old world charm. Whether you are looking for quaint bed and breakfast, luxury hotel, a cozy, authentic casita or a posh, amenity-filled private home, Santa Fe has something for you.

When arranging your visit for the Santa Fe Summer Series, please consider staying with one of our preferred lodging facilities. Please use the links and codes provided and mention the Equicenter’s Santa Fe Summer Series to receive the best rates.

Santa Fe Summer Series 2015 Preferred Lodging:

Santa Fe Summer Series 2015 Preferred Lodging (Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

Santa Fe Summer Series 2015 Preferred Lodging (Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

Casas de Guadalupe offers unique Santa Fe Vacation Rentals: fully-equipped, pet friendly, and inviting extended stay lodging just two blocks from Santa Fe Plaza and 25 minutes from the Equicenter. Select one of 12 authentic adobe casita rentals and experience why Santa Fe is known as “The City Different.”

Casas de Guadalupe
232 N. Guadalupe St.
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501
505-235-2085
http://santafe-vacationrentals.com/

Santa Fe Summer Series 2015 Preferred Lodging (Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

Santa Fe Summer Series 2015 Preferred Lodging
(Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

Courtyard Santa Fe – Marriot is a 15 minutes drive from The Equicenter and is offering a special group rate for Santa Fe Summer Series clients. At the Courtyard by Marriott Santa Fe, early Native American culture blends with modern luxury for a unique lodging experience. Just minutes away from the Santa Fe Airport and numerous Santa Fe attractions, including the Loretto Chapel, the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum and the Canyon Road Gallery District, it is an ideal location for the those traveling to Santa Fe for the Summer Series.  Use the links below for each week to book:

Santa Fe Summer Series Welcome Week

Santa Fe Summer Series Fiesta Week

Grand Prix de Santa Fe Week

Courtyard Santa Fe – Marriot
3347 Cerrillos Road
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87507 USA
505-473-2800

Santa Fe Summer Series 2015 Preferred Lodging (Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

Santa Fe Summer Series 2015 Preferred Lodging
(Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

The Lodge at Santa Fe is 20 minutes to the Equicenter de Santa Fe and offers impeccable Southwestern accommodations with great amenities and friendly, professional service. Perched on a hilltop overlooking downtown Santa Fe, with views of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, the Lodge at Santa Fe is a boutique New Mexico hotel with a warm and relaxed atmosphere. Enjoy convenient amenities, such as complimentary shuttle service to historic Santa Fe Plaza that is only five minutes away and an outdoor pool and hot tub with poolside food and beverage service.

To make a reservation at The Lodge please call 505-992-5858 and ask for the Grand Prix de Santa Fe or reference the Group Codes below for each set of room nights at the Lodge. All reservations must be secured with a credit card and are subject to a 72 hour cancellation policy. All reservations for The Lodge must be received no later than June 22, 2015. Rates from $119–$169 per suite.

Santa Fe Summer Series Welcome Week:  July 21–July 27, use CODE BO1815
Santa Fe Summer Series Fiesta Week: July 29–Aug. 3, use  CODE BO1915
Grand Prix de Santa Fe Week: Aug. 4–Aug. 10 use CODE BO1B15

Airport Proximity:
The Equicenter de Santa Fe is located just 6 miles from downtown Santa Fe, 53 miles from Albuquerque. The Santa Fe Airport (SAF), which serves Dallas and Denver with nonstop flights, is within 1 mile of The Equicenter de Santa Fe. The Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ), has flight connections to all major US airports. There is regular shuttle service between the Sunport and Santa Fe.

EquicenterdeSantaFe.com
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The Santa Fe Summer Series Proudly Announces the $5,000 Unser Ride-and-Drive Mini Cooper Challenge! Sponsored by Sandia Mini Cooper

May 23, 2015 By: janwest Category: General

The Santa Fe Summer Series proudly announces the $5,000 Unser Ride-and-Drive Mini Cooper Challenge sponsored by Sandia Mini Cooper! (Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

The Santa Fe Summer Series proudly announces the $5,000 Unser Ride-and-Drive Mini Cooper Challenge sponsored by Sandia Mini Cooper! (Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

The atmosphere at the Equicenter will be electric during this Santa Fe Summer Series special class exclusive! This fast-paced, exciting and unique class — open to professionals, juniors and amateurs — is sure to be a crowd pleaser.

Check it out! Riders will complete a course of jumps set at 1.20m on horseback, then hand their equines off to a handler and complete a set of obstacles on foot, heading toward a waiting Sandia Mini-Cooper. These Sandia Mini’s won’t be piloted by just any drivers — esteemed Indy drivers will be behind the wheel — including 2-time Indianapolis 500 winner, Al Unser, and 8-time Pikes Peak International Hill Climb and Indy Car’s Rookie of the Year, Robby Unser!

Equestrian competitors will continue the car course, paired with these incredible drivers and the team boasting the fastest time and least faults will prevail as our winner!

Both our acclaimed Grand Prix equestrians and these world-famous Indy Drivers will be available for autographs and selfies following the competition!

The Santa Fe Summer Series proudly announces the $5,000 Unser Ride-and-Drive Mini Cooper Challenge sponsored by Sandia Mini Cooper! (Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

The Santa Fe Summer Series proudly announces the $5,000 Unser Ride-and-Drive Mini Cooper Challenge sponsored by Sandia Mini Cooper! (Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

About Sandia Mini

The Santa Fe Summer Series is very grateful to Sandia Mini for their support of our inaugural horse show. Sandia Mini is one of the premier dealerships in the U.S., known for their commitment to customer service and offering of the most comprehensive parts and service departments in the automotive industry. Put the FUN in functional with Mini!

Thank you Sandia Mini for your sponsorship of this incredible special class and of equestrian sport in our region!

The Summer Series Event Program runs July 22–August 9, at Equicenter de Santa Fe, a 137-acre, full service equestrian facility, providing the very best in competition for the hunter/jumper community. A world-class equestrian venue in the beautiful Land of Enchantment, the Equicenter is conveniently located in historic Santa Fe. For more information about the facility or the horse shows, please visit us at: www.equicenterdesantafe.com

The Santa Fe Summer Series runs for three weeks:
Santa Fe Welcome Week – July 22–26, 2015
Santa Fe Fiesta – July 29–August 2, 2015
Grand Prix de Santa Fe – August 5–9, 2015

Competitions include Hunters, Jumpers, Derby and Grand Prix classes. For exhibitor information please contact: Janet Hischer at janet@equicenterdesantefe.com or call 602-463-3223.

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Bring Your Young Horse to the Santa Fe Summer Series!

May 21, 2015 By: janwest Category: General

Chenoa McElvain, of Rancho Corazon, competing on her up-and-coming young Holsteiner mare. Chenoa will be showing Rancho Corazon’s young talent at the Santa Fe Summer Series 2015. (Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

Chenoa McElvain, of Rancho Corazon, competing on her up-and-coming young Holsteiner mare. Chenoa will be showing Rancho Corazon’s young talent at the Santa Fe Summer Series 2015.
(Photo courtesy of Equicenter de Santa Fe)

The Santa Fe Summer Series offers a rare opportunity to develop your promising young equine athletes this summer.

To encourage the development of young show-jumping talent, The Santa Fe Summer Series is pleased to offer breeders, trainers and owners a unique opportunity to promote their young equine prospects.

The Santa Fe Summer Series will host a designated Young Horse Ring — where horses 6 years of age and under can gain valuable show experience in a structured environment, free of charge. Our Young Horse Ring is designed to support these impressionable up-and-coming athletes, allow them to gain show mileage and help them advance to their highest potential with confidence.

Guidelines for the Young Horse Ring:
* No fee for 6-year-olds and younger
* 7-year-olds and up — low weekly fee
* Sign-up at the horse show office
* Ring etiquette and rules will be posted at the gate

The Santa Fe Summer Series wishes the best of luck to all exhibitors, breeders, trainers and owners this summer!

The Summer Series Event Program runs July 22–August 9, 2015, at Equicenter de Santa Fe, a 137-acre, full service equestrian facility, providing the very best in competition for the hunter/jumper community. A world-class equestrian venue in the beautiful Land of Enchantment, the Equicenter is conveniently located in historic Santa Fe. For more information about the facility or the horse shows, please visit us at: www.equicenterdesantafe.com

The Santa Fe Summer Series runs for three weeks:
Santa Fe Welcome Week – July 22–26, 2015
Santa Fe Fiesta – July 29–August 2, 2015
Grand Prix de Santa Fe – August 5–9, 2015

 CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD & PRINT PREMIUM

Competitions include Hunters, Jumpers, Derby and Grand Prix classes. For exhibitor information, please contact: Janet Hischer at janet@equicenterdesantefe.com or call 602-463-3223.

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2015 IHSA Nationals Recap Day One

May 02, 2015 By: janwest Category: General

2015 IHSA National Championships are being held April 30–May 3 at the Eastern States Exposition in Springfield, Massachusetts. (Photo credit: Alistaire Ruggiero)

2015 IHSA National Championships are being held April 30–May 3 at the Eastern States Exposition in Springfield, Massachusetts. (Photo credit: Alistaire Ruggiero)

The morning of April 30, 2015, at The Big E (Eastern States Exposition) in Springfield, Massachusetts, the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association Nationals were underway. The Individual Alumni Equitation Over Fences, Collegiate Cup Intermediate Equitation Over Fences and the jumping phase of the Cacchione Cup Hunter Seat Equitation classes took place. The champion of the Individual Alumni Equitation Over Fences class was Mount Holyoke College rider Alicyn Hoy from Zone One and the Reserve Champion was Kansas State rider Katherine Deichmann from Zone Seven. Additionally, the champion of the Collegiate Cup Intermediate Equitation Over Fences class was College of Charleston rider Victoria Bauer from Zone Five and the Reserve Champion was Skidmore College rider Jessica Stoukides from Zone Two. A total of 38 riders competed in the jumping phase of the Cacchione Cup Hunter Seat Equitation class, but only 24 of the 38 will compete in the flat phase of the class.

IHSA National Championships course walk. (Photo credit: Alistaire Ruggiero)

2015 IHSA National Championships course walk. (Photo credit: Alistaire Ruggiero)

The Big E was bustling with spectators, volunteers, horse-holders and grooms. Smith College, Mount Holyoke College as well as the rest of the colleges from Region Three of Zone One brought their team members to volunteer and help the show run as smoothly as possible. Numerous vendors such as SmartPak and Dublin were at the competition and had amazing sales.

The classes ran smoothly from the beginning of the show until midday. Only two re-rides and one fall occurred throughout the course of the morning. Fans, family members, fellow riders and coaches cheered from the stands for each rider.

The Intercollegiate Horse Show Association Nationals will continue over the weekend. Please tune in to the live feed online to see the rounds of the fantastic riders at this competition.

The horse-draw booth at the 2015 IHSA National Championships. (Photo credit: Alistaire Ruggiero)

The horse-draw booth at the 2015 IHSA National Championships.
(Photo credit: Alistaire Ruggiero)

Individual Alumni Equitation Over Fences:

First: Mount Holyoke College Zone One 1398 Alicyn Hoy

Second: Kansas State Zone Seven 181 Katherine Deichmann

Collegiate Cup Intermediate Equitation Over Fences:

First: College of Charleston Zone Five 118 Victoria Bauer

Second: Skidmore College Zone Two 433 Jessica Stoukides

Cacchione Cup Hunter Seat Equitation: 24 move on

About the writer: Alistaire Ruggiero hails from Phoenix, Arizona, where she grew up surrounded by horses. At age 4, Alistaire began riding at a hunter/jumper barn where she learned the basics of equitation on amazing school horses. Enthralled by the equine world and wanting to try all types of riding, at age 8 Alistaire began eventing with her first pony and has been eventing ever since.Today, she is a junior at Smith College studying anthropology and biology. Alistaire is currently one of the captains of the Smith College equestrian team and, in the next few years, hopes to attend veterinary school.

Young Riders Top Performances Mark IEA National Equestrian Competition

April 29, 2015 By: janwest Category: General

Front Range Equestrian Team - Parker, Colorado, IEA 2015 Upper School Championship team left to right: Shaun Clark (coach), Jordan Eckstadt, Kylie Blair, Molly Hoskins, Lilian Schaefer, Caroline Molther, Allison Zimmerman and Tracye Ferguson (coach).

Front Range Equestrian Team – Parker, Colorado, IEA 2015 Upper School Championship team left to right: Shaun Clark (coach), Jordan Eckstadt, Kylie Blair, Molly Hoskins, Lilian Schaefer, Caroline Molther, Allison Zimmerman and Tracye Ferguson (coach).
(Photo courtesy of IEA)

West Palm Beach, Florida — April 29, 2015 — 396 of the nation’s leading middle school and high school equestrians competed at the Jim Brandon Equestrian Center for the Interscholastic Equestrian Association (IEA) National Finals. The finalists represented 1,220 teams and nearly 11,500 student-riders from eight zones throughout the United States. Individuals and teams participated in multiple competitions during the 2014–2015 regular season shows, regional and zone finals to qualify for the IEA National Finals competition.

Riders competed in Hunt Seat Equitation Over Fences classes and Equitation on the Flat classes throughout the weekend. The IEA format requires that riders compete in unfamiliar tack on unfamiliar mounts; therefore, they draw their horses the day of competition and enter the arena after a brief, if any, warm-up.

Liftoff Equestrian Team - Versailles, Kentucky, IEA 2015 Middle School Championship Team left to right: Isabela de Sousa, Diana Conlon (coach), Genevieve Heyn

Liftoff Equestrian Team – Versailles, Kentucky, IEA 2015 Middle School Championship team left to right: Isabela de Sousa, Diana Conlon (coach), Genevieve Heyn.
(Photo courtesy of IEA)

In the individual competition Ransome Rombauer, 16, who rides for the Sonoma Academy, Penngrove, California, was named the 2015 IEA Leading Hunt Seat Rider, winning the Varsity Open Championship class.

The Champion of the upper school team competition was the Front Range Equestrian Team from Parker, Colorado. Chatham Hall school from Chatham, Virginia, was Reserve Champion. In the middle school competition, Liftoff Equestrian Team from Versailles, Kentucky, received the Championship title. Boulder Brook Equestrian from Scarsdale, New York, finished as the Reserve Champion.

Ransome Rombauer - Sonoma Academy, Penngrove, California, 2015 IEA Leading Rider

Ransome Rombauer – Sonoma Academy, Penngrove, California, 2015 IEA Leading Rider. (Photo courtesy of IEA)

The IEA holds the trait of good sportsmanship among rider and coach members to the highest regard. Kate Coffey of the North Gate Equestrian Team from Sudbury, Massachusetts, was awarded the Victor Hugo-Vidal Perpetual Trophy for displaying exceptional sportsmanship during the 2015 Hunt Seat National Finals. The Team Spirit Award was presented to the Summer Hills Farm, Flower Mound, Texas.

The Timothy J. Boone Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Jennifer Eaton, Groveland, Massachusetts, for her long-time contribution to the IEA. Known for her contribution to the growth of the membership office and her dedication to the betterment of the association, Jennifer has helped the IEA quadruple it’s membership. This is the eighth year in which this award has been presented.

Summer Hill Farms Equestrian Team - Flower Mound, Texas, 2015 Team Spirit Award left to right: back row:  Myron Leff (IEA founder), Madison Butz, Avery Dukes, Sydney Boren, Alexis Smith, Amy Greene (coach), Melissa Foster, Susan Frey, Christine Johnson, Olivia Donnarumma, Roxane Lawrence (IEA founder).  Front row: Taylor Chahal, Reagan Havron, Alex Arthur, Lauren Lacy, Avery Ackalbein

Summer Hill Farms Equestrian Team – Flower Mound, Texas, 2015 Team Spirit Award left to right: back row: Myron Leff (IEA founder), Madison Butz, Avery Dukes, Sydney Boren, Alexis Smith, Amy Greene (coach), Melissa Foster, Susan Frey, Christine Johnson, Olivia Donnarumma, Roxane Lawrence (IEA founder). Front row: Taylor Chahal, Reagan Havron, Alex Arthur, Lauren Lacy, Avery Ackalbein. (Photo courtesy of IEA)

The IEA is committed to wellness of the horses in all competitions. To recognize the quality of the horses donated for the three-day event, “Seacrest” (owned by the Seacrest Stables from Winter Garden, Florida) was named Outstanding IEA Hunt Seat Horse.

The IEA Western National Finals, sponsored by the National Reining Horse Youth Association (NRHYA), will be held during the NRHA Derby Days June 25–27 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Kate Coffey - North Gate Equestrian Team - Sudbury, Massachusetts, Victor Hugo-Vidal Perpetual Trophy for National Finals Sportsmanship left to right: Myron Leff (IEA founder), Kate Coffey

Kate Coffey – North Gate Equestrian Team – Sudbury, Massachusetts, Victor Hugo-Vidal Perpetual Trophy for National Finals Sportsmanship left to right: Myron Leff (IEA founder), Kate Coffey. (Photo courtesy of IEA)

Seacrest from Seacrest Stable - Winter Garden, Florida, 2015 IEA Outstanding Horse left to right: Myron Leff (IEA founder), Seacrest, Kate Coffey, Roxane Lawrence (IEA founder)

Seacrest from Seacrest Stable – Winter Garden, Florida, 2015 IEA Outstanding Horse left to right: Myron Leff (IEA founder), Seacrest, Kate Coffey, Roxane Lawrence (IEA founder). (Photo courtesy of IEA)

Founded in 2002, the IEA was organized to promote and improve the quality of equestrian competition and instruction available to middle and secondary school students. Its purpose is to set minimum standards for competition, provide information concerning the creation and development of school associated equestrian sport programs and to generally promote the common interests of safe riding instruction and competition and education on matters related to equestrian competition at the middle and secondary school levels. Unique to the IEA, there is no need to own a horse. Mounts and tack are supplied to each rider at every IEA event. The IEA currently has over 11,000 participants, ages 11–19, across the United States. For additional information, please visit the IEA website: www.rideiea.org.
Jennifer Eaton - 2015 Timothy J. Boone Lifetime Achievement Award recipient

Jennifer Eaton – 2015 Timothy J. Boone Lifetime Achievement Award recipient.
(Photo courtesy of IEA)

A complete list of riders/teams final standings is available on the IEA website: www.rideiea.org.

Nayel Nassar Makes It Two With Double Dutch

April 11, 2015 By: janwest Category: General

Nayel Nassar and Nakich Double Dutch (Photo by McCool Photography)

Nayel Nassar and Nakich Double Dutch (Photo by McCool Photography)

April 9, 2015 – San Juan Capistrano, CA – The $25,000 Markel Insurance 1.40m Grand Prix kicked off the first of multiple showcase events during the third and final week of the Blenheim EquiSports Spring Classic series. With 66 entries in the class, veteran course designer Leopoldo Palacios (VEN) had the complex task of designing a track that would adequately challenge the huge field while being appropriate for the varying levels of competitor experience.

With sixteen efforts consisting of a difficult triple combination, multiple rollbacks, and an accurate track connecting nearly every fence, the course kept competitors on their toes. However, the tight time allowed of 81 seconds was the standout challenge, causing faults for the vast majority of the class and keeping several entries with an otherwise clear round out of the jump-off.

Palacios, who has designed courses in nearly forty countries and world-class events such as the Olympics, Pan American Games, and the Central American Games, demonstrated his designing dexterity once more. He hit the target on his ideal of 11 entries clean as a handful of top riders and up-and-coming stars prepared to prove themselves in the jump-off.

Seven elements in a time allowed of 48 seconds made up the twisting course, with three new fences on course, a double combination, and multiple rollbacks that ended in a daring gallop over the final oxer.

Enrique Gonzalez and his own Quilebo du Tillard were first to return. Gonzalez, who represented Mexico at the 2008 Olympics and competed at the 2014 Alltech World Equestrian Games, set a sizzling time to beat, going clear in 35.45 seconds.

Second to return, Nayel Nassar on Nakich Double Dutch (Madeleine Wilson, owner) executed the skills that earned him the top prize in the 2013 HITS Zoetis $1 Million Grand Prix. The 23-year-old Stanford graduate, who represented Egypt in the 2014 Alltech World Equestrian Games as well as the FEI World Cup™ Finals, calculated a slick track.  Riding clean in 35.25 seconds, he narrowly beat Gonzalez.

Several rounds later, Brazilian Eduardo Menezes and Ilan Ferder’s Clear Me turned in the third double-clear in 35.36 seconds to sneak into second place. Partners in business, Gonzalez and Menezes are clearly fierce competitors in the ring.  While developing a solid string of horses, Menezes has set his sights towards competing in his home country at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games.

Eduardo Menezes and Clear Me (Photo by McCool Photography)

Eduardo Menezes and Clear Me (Photo by McCool Photography)

Tanya Levorchick and Zanzibar (Megan Camaisa, owner) were also double clear in a solid 37.55 seconds. Levorchick, a trainer at Logan Hill in San Diego, campaigned Zanzibar successfully throughout the 2014 Markel Insurance 1.40m Grand Prix series and placed 8th in the Final during the Las Vegas National Horse Show.

Irish rider Jennifer Crooks and Olivia Cox-Fill’s S.F. Uryadi were second-to-last to come back and laid down the final double-clear round in 39.19.  This pair has a strong history representing Ireland at top-level events such as the 2012 BMO Financial Nations Cup at Spruce Meadows.

Last to return, Allyssa Hecht and Calvatos Z (Neaulani Farms, owner) had the fastest time in the jump-off, zipping through the timers in 35.07 seconds, but an unfortunate rail kept them out of the top spot. Hecht recently earned a second place finish on Calero in last week’s $40,000 Spring Classic II Grand Prix, presented by Orange County Register.

Setting the time to beat early on, Nassar and Nakich Double Dutch clinched the win.
“She’s a 13-year-old Dutch-bred mare whose owner lives in Boston. She was here and competed on the mare last week, so I actually haven’t shown this mare in a couple of months.  This is our first class together, so I’m really happy with her,” Nassar explained. “She’s very careful and really fast.  The key is to get her to take a breath when she can and we managed to do that today.”

With two Markel Insurance Grand Prix wins already under his belt, Nassar is thinking seriously about November’s Final at the Las Vegas National. “We are usually on the West Coast then; if plans stay that way I’ll definitely be targeting the class in Vegas.”

Nassar has spent the last three weeks competing at the Blenheim EquiSports Spring Series with plans to go for the win in Saturday’s $50,000 Spring Classic III Grand Prix on Andrew Ramsay’s Bologna. “It’s been great to be here for three weeks. This is a beautiful facility, with good prizes and footing that has been holding up very well.”

Nayel Nassar and Madeleine Wilson's Nakich Double Dutch, with Brandon Seger of Markel Insurance and Melissa Brandes and Robert Ridland of Blenheim EquiSports. (Photo by McCool Photography)

Nayel Nassar and Madeleine Wilson’s Nakich Double Dutch, with Brandon Seger of Markel Insurance and Melissa Brandes and Robert Ridland of Blenheim EquiSports.
(Photo by McCool Photography)

The host of showcase events continue tomorrow in the Grand Prix field, as the hunters take the stage in the $10,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, honoring Arthur Hawkins. On Saturday the show jumping excitement returns in the $50,000 Spring Classic III Grand Prix, presented by EquiFit, inc. at 3:30pm.

RESULTS
$25,000 Markel Insurance 1.40m Grand Prix

 Place – Number – Horse – Rider – Owner – Faults/Time

1. 454 – Nakich Double Dutch – Nayel Nassar – Madeleine Wilson – 0/0/35.253
2. 870 – Clear Me – Eduardo Menezes – Ilan Ferder – 0/0/35.365
3. 874 – Quilebo du Tillard – Enrique Gonzalez – Enrique Gonzalez – 0/0/35.451
4. 442 – Zanzibar – Tanya Levorchick – Megan Camaisa – 0/0/37.553
5. 112 – S.F. Uryadi – Jennifer Crooks – Olivia Cox-Fill – 0/0/39.194
6. 432 – Calvatos Z – Allyssa Hecht- Neaulani Farms – 0/4/35.071
7. 791 – Cantori – Andrew Kocher – Aleece Jarman – 0/4/35.210
8. 561 – Baldira – Ray Texel – Mirador Equestrian + Paul Schockemöhle – 0/8/35.191
9. 212 – Santa Catarina LS La Silla – Bretton Chad – Stone Ridge Farms, LLC – 0/8/36.025
10. 232 – San Diego – Danielle Korsh – Danielle Korsh – 0/8/38.840
11. 582 – Paloma – Keri Potter – Melanie Brooks – 0/EL
12. 459 – Unlimited – Josephina Nor Lantzman – Josephina Nor Stables, LLC – 1/81.129

Blenheim EquiSports, an equestrian event management company based in San Juan Capistrano, CA, produces events in three locations: San Juan Capistrano, Del Mar and Las Vegas, NV. The events include USEF “A” and “AA” rated hunter-jumper shows featuring a Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping North American League qualifying grand prix, USHJA International Hunter Derbies, Pony Finals, Medal Finals and more.

Deloitte Announces Sponsorship of Dressage Rider Laura Graves

April 08, 2015 By: janwest Category: General

Laura Graves on the cover of the February issue of Sidelines Magazine. (Photo credit: Triple Stitch Photography)

Laura Graves on the cover of the February issue of Sidelines Magazine. (Photo credit: Triple Stitch Photography)

Editor’s Note: Laura and Diddy were featured on the cover of the February Sidelines issue and we are proud to share the good news about her sponsorship! Congratulations Laura!

Laura Graves (left), Verdades "Diddy," and Judy Sloan (Photo courtesy of Deloitte)

Laura Graves (left), Verdades (“Diddy”) and Judy Sloan
(Photo courtesy of Deloitte)

Marks one of the first and only dressage individual rider sponsorships in professional services field

April 4, 2015 – Wellington, Florida – Deloitte, one of the world’s largest professional services firms offering audit, advisory, consulting and tax services, has announced its sponsorship of dressage champion Laura Graves. This marks Deloitte’s first sponsorship of an individual equestrian athlete. Deloitte is a strong supporter of Olympic Sport athletes; in working with Deloitte, Laura will enjoy the benefits that an affiliation with Deloitte provides while being given the support to focus on her competitive goals.

“This is an exciting milestone for us,” commented Deloitte Principal Judith Sloan. “I have been watching Laura’s journey closely over the past six years – during that time, she has demonstrated the pursuit of excellence, sportsmanship, teamwork and determination that we look for in both our own talent and the athletes whom we sponsor,” she added.

Laura Graves and Judy Sloan discuss the sponsorship at a press conference . (Photo courtesy of Deloitte)

Laura Graves and Judy Sloan discuss the sponsorship at a press conference. (Photo courtesy of Deloitte)

“I am both thrilled and honored to be a part of Deloitte’s group of athletes,” said Laura. “The firm’s support will allow me the freedom to focus on my goals and my horse as we move towards the World Cup, the Pan Am Games and hopefully on to Rio in 2016,” she added.

Sloan, an equestrian herself, is especially excited about Deloitte’s involvement in equestrian sport as it is the only Olympic sport where men and women compete on a level playing field. “At Deloitte, we are totally focused on the development and success of our people, and we place a strong and balanced focus on the leadership development of both men and women; I have been a huge beneficiary of that focus, and it’s exciting to now align our values with those of equestrian competitors,” Sloan commented.

Deloitte is one of the world’s largest professional services firms in the world. With 210,000 people in 100 countries, the firm has one single focus: serving its clients with distinction to help them solve their toughest problems.