The Grooms Award, Ltd. Rewards Grooms in Riders Cup at Del Mar

The Grooms Award, Ltd., a not-for-profit 501(c)3 charitable organization that recognizes and rewards professional grooms, ended the 2020 season in a big way by presenting gift bags and awards to professional grooms in three events in West Palm Events’ Riders Cup at the Del Mar Horse Park, November 19-22.

The action-packed weekend ended a year which saw most of The Grooms Award’s schedule canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Grooms Award presented awards and gifts to the grooms of the winning horses in the $10,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby, $15,000 1.30m Medium Junior/Amateur/A-O Classic and the $100,000 Riders Cup Grand Prix in addition to gift bags to all of the grooms in the Grand Prix.

“This was really a great way for The Grooms Award to end a year that has been challenging for everyone,” said Andrea Mewhinney, Director of The Grooms Award, Ltd. “While so many events were canceled this year, Grooms never stopped working on behalf of the horses under their care. We thank West Palm Events for providing us the opportunity to recognize the hard-working grooms and reward them for all they do.”

The $10,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby was won by Jason McArdle on Enrique and the winning groom was Francisco Lara. The $15,000 1.30m Medium Junior/Amateur/A-O Classic was won by Stella Wasserman on Amadeus and the winning groom was Julio Perez. The $100,000 Riders Cup Grand Prix was won by Karl Cook on Caillou and the winning groom was Jenni Giannini.

Each winning groom received a SmartPak Tote Bag containing:
  • Sterling Essentials Leather Cleaning and Conditioning Products
  • Boy-O-Boy Bridleworks’ custom #groomsrock belt
  • Mary’s Tack and Feed Leather Lead Shank
  • Mary’s Tack and Feed black Cinch Vest
  • EquiFit Essential 3-ply face mask
  • Grooms Award gray hat, blue and teal hammock, pen and pin
  • Thermos Vacuum Insulated 16oz. mug and lanyard
  • Gift Certificates from SmartPak and Starbucks and $100 cash
  • Uncle Jimmy’s Squeeze Buns Horse Treats
In addition, all grooms in the $100,000 Riders Cup Grand Prix received a Grooms Award bag containing:
  • An assortment of food, goodies, and treats
  • SmartPak OutSmart® Fly Spray
  • Tack sponge
  • Grooms Award decals and brochure
“I want to thank all our sponsors for supporting our efforts to recognize and reward professional grooms,” Mewhinney said. “I also want to thank Lynn McClanahan and Dianne Grod for taking the time to represent The Grooms Award at the Riders Cup. I know their hard work in packing and presenting the gift bags was very much appreciated by the grooms and we look forward to returning to a full schedule in 2021.”

About the Groom’s Award, Ltd.
Created to recognize the workers “behind the scenes,” the Grooms Award was established in honor of Moira Caffarey (who unexpectedly passed away in 1997) and later George Hennessy (transporter for the USET). Friends of Moira donated a trophy for the first-ever grooms’ award at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show in Harrisburg where individuals and companies donated prizes to be given to the winning groom. As donations increased each year, it was decided that each of the Grand Prix grooms deserved a “Thank You” for their efforts and professionalism. A tote bag was awarded to each Grand Prix groom, filled with goodies and gift cards from generous sponsors. The Grooms’ Award, Ltd. is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 charitable organization, recognizing professional grooms at select major horse shows each year. The Grooms’ Award, Ltd. welcomes donations and sponsorships. For more information, or to donate, click here.

Photos by Julia B. Top: Jenni Giannini. Middle: Francisco Lara. Bottom: Julio Perez.