Wellington, FL – February 14, 2016 – Emily Perez piloted her own Cassanto to the Bruno Delgrange Large Junior Hunter 16-17 division championship on Sunday afternoon in the E.R. Mische Grand Hunter Field. Besting a field of 21 horses, Perez won the stake class with a high score of 88. She also placed first in the handy and earned a third place ribbon in another over fences class. Lilli Hymowitz rode Rose Hill Farm’s Garfield to the reserve honors, earning a first and two second place ribbons over fences and a fifth in the under saddle.
Perez, of Pittsford, NY, is a 16-year-old junior at Pittsford Southerland High School. She commutes to Wellington on the weekends in order to compete with her horses in the junior hunter, equitation, and junior jumper divisions. She has been riding for eight years, beginning at a local barn in Rochester, NY. Three years ago, she decided to move to Heritage Farm in order to pursue a more competitive junior career.
Besides riding horses, singing is another one of Perez’s talents. She takes voice lessons near her hometown in Rochester, NY, where she often sings in recitals and at local events. This past summer Perez sang the national anthem for the CSI 3* Grand Prix at the Tryon International Equestrian Center.
When Perez originally purchased Cassanto two years ago, he was meant to be her equitation horse. When the pair began competing in the hunter divisions to build on their partnership, it became clear that the nine-year-old Holsteiner gelding could be a rather fancy hunter. Perez then decided to focus on the hunters with Cassanto.
Perez enjoys showing her gelding in the E.R. Mische Grand Hunter Field because of the ring’s physical openness, which allows more flow on course. “It went really well for me this week,” Perez remarked. “I thought today he was jumping really well. I enjoyed the courses as well. Today there was a line going to the right and he really opened up his right lead for me and made a great effort.”
“He’s got a really cute personality. He knows he’s really special,” Perez said about her beautiful chestnut gelding. “He’s super brave and always does whatever you ask him.”
Perez looks forward to showing Cassanto in the Large Junior 16-17 division next week during WCHR hunter week. She hopes to qualify him for the WCHR Peter Wetherill Palm Beach Hunter Spectacular, which will take place in the International Arena on Saturday night of WEF six. “I also really want to compete in a hunter derby this year,” Perez said about her future goals with Cassanto. “They are so fun.”
WEF continues in week six with World Championship Hunter Rider (WCHR) competition featured in the International Ring from February 17-21, 2016, while the international jumpers compete at The Stadium at PBIEC, both in the Global International Ring and the grass derby field, in their CSI 3* events all week. For more information and full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.
Source: Lauren Fisher and Callie Seaman for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.