Scott Stewart swept both High Performance divisions during the start of WCHR Hunter Week at the 2019 Winter Equestrian Festival. The Antares High Performance Working Hunters kicked off competition Thursday morning in the E.R. Mische Grand Hunter Field where Stewart and Dr. Betsee Parker’s 11-year-old Warmblood gelding (Coriano), Cameo won three out of four classes for the championship. Stewart then returned to the ring with Parker’s Private Life, an eight-year-old KWPN gelding by Verdi x Pinot Rosso).
Champions Scott Stewart and Cameo in the Antares High Performance Working Hunter. Photo © Sportfot.
The pair wrapped up the High Performance Conformation Hunters with two firsts, a second, a third, and a fourth for the champion ribbon. Stewart continued his day by taking Champion in the Green Conformation Hunter with Scandal, a five-year-old Oldenburg gelding (Scandix x Ramira Gracia) owned by Gochman Sport Horses LLC. Reserve Champion went to Kelley Farmer and Me Too, a six-year-old mare owned by Larry Glefke.
“Scandal was awesome; he is five coming six so he’s the greenest one we have,” commented Stewart. “He was really good yesterday and today so I’m excited. He’s a beautiful horse and a beautiful mover as well, so he has the whole package.”
Scott Stewart and Scandal champion in the Green Conformation Hunter. Photo © Sportfot.
“As for Cameo we’ve had for quite a long time and he’s been a great winner for us,” Stewart said. “Private Life is only eight now but he’s been champion pretty much every time we’ve shown him except for a couple of times. My hope is that one or both of them will qualify to enter Saturday night’s event and then most likely neither of them will show again until the Devon Horse Show.”
Young hunter professional Victoria Colvin landed the reserve champion title in the High Performance Working Hunters with Bryan Baldwin and Meralex Farm, Inc.’s El Primero. The High Performance Conformation Hunters reserve champion went to Christopher Payne and Still Water Farm LLC’s Fibonacci.
Kelley Farmer and Consent also champions in the Equine Tack & Nutritionals Green Hunter 3’6 . Photo © Sportfot.
The Equine Tack & Nutritionals Green Hunter 3’6” division saw two competitors take home the tricolor champion ribbon as the class was held in a California Split format due to the high volume of entries. Hunter veteran Kelley Farmer piloted the six-year-old Westphalian gelding (Los Angeles x Fiones), Consent, to the first champion title with two firsts and a third. Consent is an up-and-coming talent recently purchased from Europe under the ownership of Larry Glefke and Kent Farrington LLC.
“Consent really is just the sweetest horse but he is a true competitor through and through.” Farmer commented, “He has the personality of a little puppy but you won’t find a horse more eager to win.”
Equine Tack and Nutritionals Green Hunter 3’6″ Champion Tara Metzner and Lion. Photo © Sportfot.
Right along with Farmer was Tara Metzner and the Davlyn Farms Inc’s gelding, Lion as they rounded out the division with two seconds and a first. Metzner has taken the gelding from the Pre-Green division and is looking forward to competing him in his first class under the lights in Saturday’s event. She complimented Lion with being a ‘true competitor’ and stated that “ he’s been a wonderful horse every step of the way; he is super brave and always jumps his best.”
The Young Hunter 3’6” (7YO & under) division took to the International Arena in the afternoon where Jimmy Torano and Dubai were ultimately assigned the champion title. Torano and the five-year-old Zangersheide gelding (Diarado x Wonja-K Van’t Kattenheye Z) came home with a total of two first places and three second places for the tricolor ribbon. Valerie Renihan of Findlay’s Ridge has been involved with Dubai since his purchase by client, Kirsten Ostling, and said that while he was originally sent to her to make into an equitation horse, she felt he would have a more successful career in the hunters. “ This is only his fourth time competing in the hunters so for him to already qualify to show in the night class on Saturday is really wonderful,” she said.
Jimmy Torano and Dubai in the Young Hunter 3’6″. Photo © Sportfot.
The Green Hunter 3’9”, presented by Equine Tack and Nutritionals, wrapped up late Thursday morning. Champion went to Maria Rasmussen and SKF On My Own, a eight-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Tangelo Van De Zuuthoeve x Santa Caterina) owned by the Bailiwick Group. Amanda Steege and Lafitte De Muze, a eight-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Darco x Everlychin De La Pomme) owned by Cheryl Olsten, took Reserve Champion.
“He gives it his all every single time he goes out there,” said Rasmussen of her partner SKF On My Own. “He knew it was our trip of the day, and he jumped amazing. He gave me everything he had, it was awesome. We’ve really only had him a month or so, and he’s been perfect from day one. We’re very excited, and [her win today] is a huge goal accomplished.”
Maria Rasmussen and SKF On My Own in the Equine Tack & Nutritionals Green Hunter 3’9 . Photo © Sportfot.
Tiffany Morrissey and Sebastian, a nine-year-old Holsteiner gelding (Cancara x Luna XVII) owned by Stacey Werner, were the Section A Champions in the Performance Hunter 3’3” Stake, presented by FarmVet. “I had a great day. He won all three yesterday and then today he got a 92. He really went amazing,” commented Morrissey about Sebastian.
“I don’t think he could’ve done it better. He’s a very special horse. He does an amateur job as well with his owner Stacey, and then I’m lucky enough to do him big weeks like this and some derbies. He’s just a special horse, everything about him is special, he moves, he jumps, he’s beautiful, he’s got it all.”
Tiffany Morrissey and Sebastian champion in the FarmVet Performance Hunter 3’3″ division. Photo © Sportfot.
Section B Champion was Courtney Lenkart and Lightful, a seven-year-old Oldenburg gelding (Los Angeles x Go-Go Girl) owned by La Primera Hacienda L.P. “We’ve had him for about a year and a half now. We got him as a five-year-old and brought him along. He’s perfect, never put a foot out of place, and he was just really really consistent here today,” said Lenkart about her partner Lightful. “He’s the kindest, sweetest horse that never spooks and never does anything wrong. He also shows with his mom in the adult hunters.”
Victoria Colvin concluded her day by piloting Koala, a 10-year-old Swedish Warmblood gelding (Carmargue x Falma Hastak) owned by John and Stephanie Ingram, LLC., to Section A Champion in the Performance Hunter 3’6” Stake, presented by Equitan. Colvin also took Section B Champion with Private Practice, a nine-year-old Holsteiner gelding (x Lordanos) owned by Brad Wolf.
Victoria Colvin and Private Practice take the Equitan Performance Hunter 3’6. Photo © Sportfot.
“I’ve been riding them [Koala and Private Practice] for a couple years now,” said Colvin. “Private Practice is special because he’s so easy and he’s so game to just jump around and do everything, and Koala is actually the same now. Both their owners show them in the amateurs as well. For Private Practice, we’re going to do the derby the last week and then probably do derby finals as well, and the amateurs with Koala.”