The E.R. Mische Grand Hunter Field kicked off competition Thursday at the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) with a field of 20 horse-and-rider competitions contesting for the championship in the Equine Tack & Nutritionals Green Hunter 3’6” division. Ulitmately, Jeff Gogul of Wilmington, Ohio, won the top title with a total of 30 points to just narrowly overcome Kelley Farmer.
Jeff Gogul and Quintessa. Photo by Sportfot
Gogul was aboard the nine-year-old warmblood mare Quintessa, who is owned by Roberts Stables, LLC. The pair earned first place in three of the five classes comprising the division which was enough to push them several points ahead of Farmer.
Farmer and Consent, a six-year-old Westphalian gelding (Los Angeles x Fiones), finished on a first, two seconds, and a fifth. She and the Kent Farrington LLC/David Glefke-owned mare collected a total of 28 points to take the reserve champion ribbon.
Gogul and Quintessa are a relatively new pair, but he feels she has all the makings to be great in the hunter ring.
“Everything about her has been super easy and straight-forward,” he explained. “She’s fun to ride and extremely brave to the fences.”
Quintessa will compete with Sofia Roberts in the Junior Hunter 3’3” division over the weekend and potentially bring the mare up to the Small Junior 3’6” division by the end of the 2019 WEF circuit.
Photo by Sportfot
As for WEF itself, Gogul says he enjoys the unique experience of being able to keep an eye on both the international competition as well as the hunter rings because of their proximity to one another.
“I don’t often get to watch the international level riders compete because I typically need to stay close to the hunter rings,” he said. “However, because the hunter rings such as the Rost and the Grand Hunter Field are so close to the International Arena, I get the chance stay close to where I’m needed while also enjoying the upper level jumper competition.”