The six-day, 60th anniversary Washington International Horse Show (WIHS) kicked off on Tuesday, October 23, at the Capital One Arena in the heart of Washington, D.C. Tuesday’s opening day of competition featured the start of the professional and amateur hunter divisions, as well as year-end championships for child and adult hunter riders.
Earning wins in the $10,000 WIHS Children’s Hunter Championship and the $10,000 WIHS Adult Hunter Championship were Lily Pollin riding Pura Vida and Allison Cederberg on Zero Tolerance, respectively.
Lily Pollin and Pura Vida. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography
Twenty-six entries contested the $10,000 WIHS Children’s Hunter Championship, with the top 12 from an opening round returning in reverse order of their standings for a second round. At the conclusion of the first round, Pollin sat in fifth place aboard Pura Vida with a score of 82. However, a score of 86 over the second, Alan Lohman-designed course shot her to the top of the leaderboard with a 168 overall score.
“My first course I went in, and I was really nervous,” said Pollin, 15, of Bethesda, MD, who was presented with the H. Fenwick Kollock Memorial Perpetual Trophy, donated by Friends of Fen, for the win. “[Pura Vida] was perfect. He went in, and he took care of me. The second course, I went in just wanting to have fun because I was so happy we were in the top 12.”
Finishing in second behind Pollin with an overall score of 163.5 was Jordan Bell of Friendship, MD, riding Chago. Third place with a score of 160 went to Bridget Scalia of McLean, VA, aboard Utopia de la Rouase.
“It means everything to win,” said Pollin, who trains with Patty Foster and Mary Lisa Leffler at Rolling Acres Farm and whose mother, Kirsten Pollin, competes in the Amateur-Owner 3’6” Hunters. “I love [WIHS] because I’ve been coming here and watching my mom since I was really little. I think it’s so cool to be able to ride in the city and at the Capital One Arena!”
Lily Pollin rode Pura Vida to the win in the $10,000 WIHS Children’s Hunter Championship. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography
Pollin has been leasing Pura Vida, a nine-year-old Swedish Warmblood for nine years, and she also contested the Children’s Hunter Championship with the gelding in 2017, but she did not fair quite as well in what was her WIHS debut.
“I fell off last year, so this was a big improvement!” said Pollin of her ‘comeback’ victory. “I was very nervous; I just pretended that I wasn’t showing, walked around, and didn’t learn the course until late. He did everything perfectly.”