Courtney Lenkart Claims WCHR Pro Challenge at Capital Challenge Horse Show

Courtney Lenkart of Bartonville, TX, rode Glorieus to capture the top prize in the $25,000 World Championship Hunter Rider (WCHR) Professional Challenge, sponsored by The Gochman Family, at the Capital Challenge Horse Show on Wednesday, September 30.

Courtney Lenkart on Glorieus. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

In the $5,000 WCHR Developing Pro Challenge, sponsored by the John R. Ingram Fund, Julia Rose Rossow piloted Chantilly to the win, while Daniel Geitner and Mr. Manhattan topped the $25,000 North American Green Hunter 3′ and 3’3″ Championship, sponsored by The Wheeler Family. The three classes marked a highlight day of Capital Challenge, which runs through Sunday, October 4, at the World Equestrian Center in Wilmington, OH.

Riders in the $25,000 WCHR Professional Challenge competed over two rounds, after having qualified from the professional hunter divisions at the show.

At the conclusion of the first round, Lenkart and Chantilly took the lead with an 87.16. Her second-round score of 89.00, resulting in a 176.16 total, sealed the deal for the championship.

Courtney Lenkart on Glorieus in their presentation ceremony. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

“This is such a prestigious horse show, and my goal has always been to win this class,” said Lenkart, who had competed in the class once prior. “It was an amazing experience. I was a little nervous going into the second round just because I was leading. I tried to stay very relaxed and just have fun when I went in. Everything came up really smoothly. It’s like a dream come true.”

Lenkart and Glorieus, the Dutch Warmblood gelding owned by La Primera Hacienda, L P, qualified for the Professional Challenge with ribbons in the High Performance division earlier in the week at Capital Challenge.

“I’m so lucky,” Lenkart continued. “I have the best owners; Angela and Mike Barber originally bought [Glorieus] as a jumper for my husband, and I stole him! I’m so fortunate to have them as such supportive owners; my husband, [Scott Lenkart]; Cody Williams; and a team of amazing people that make sure everything is perfect and set up.”

Second place in the $25,000 WCHR Pro Challenge went to Samantha Schaefer and Madeline Schaefer’s In The Know, who scored an 87.25 in the second round, which, when added to a first-round score of 86.66, resulted in a total of 173.91. Michael Britt-Leon and Private I, owned by Kelly Sims, were third with scores of 85.33 and 86.33 for a total of 171.66.

Evan Coluccio and Philadelphia Story. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

The overall Grand Hunter Championship title, sponsored by RBS Farms, Inc., Rob Bielefeld, and Chrystal Knight, went to Evan Coluccio and Philadelphia Story, owned by Balmoral. For the win, Coluccio received the Janet Read & Margaret Hough Sabbatini Memorial Trophy, donated by the Goguen Family. Coluccio was also awarded the Leading Hunter Rider Award, sponsored by the Gibson Family and Shadyside Farm. Daisy Farish was awarded the Professional American Style of Riding Award, while Ashley Foster won the Developing Professional American Style of Riding Award, both sponsored by Bill Rube.

About the Capital Challenge Horse Show

Now in its 27th year, the Capital Challenge Horse Show, presented by the World Equestrian Center, sets itself apart with a distinct and unique focus on preeminent hunter and equitation competition. Held each autumn, the 2020 edition of the Capital Challenge Horse Show continues through October 4 at the World Equestrian Center in Wilmington, OH. The 10 days of competition will include prestigious equitation events, jumper divisions, the World Championship Hunter Rider (WCHR) Finals, the $25,000 3’ and 3’3” Green Hunter North American Championships, and more, with many of the country’s best horses and riders competing in junior, amateur, and professional divisions.