Week One in the Hunter Ring WEF Recap

Stella Propp and Ellie Ferrigno Ride Inquisitive to Championship in the Small Junior 16-17 Hunters

Saturday morning in the Rost Arena began with Stella Propp riding Inquisitive to the Small Junior 16-17 Hunter championship. Ellie Ferrigno from Newtown, CT, had the ride for the first day of the division, earning two first places. On the second day, Propp, of New York, NY, took over and earned a fourth and fifth. Together, the two riders were able to pilot Inquisitive, owned by Aquitaine Equine, to the tri-color ribbon

Stella Propp and Inquisitive. Photo © Sportfot

While Propp had to attend school on the first day of the Small Junior Hunter division, she was lucky enough to have Ferrigno step in.

“I have Ellie to thank for this weekend,” said Propp. “She is amazing and always there when we need her!”

Propp, trained by Brianne Goutal LLC, and Inquisitive are going into their second WEF season together, and Propp describes the gelding, who goes by “Inky” at the barn, as one of the most special horses she has had the chance to work with.

“He is so sweet and a little greedy at times, but that is because I spoil him,” said Propp.

Stella Propp and Inquisitive in the champion presentation. Photo © Sportfot

The pair will continue to show in the Small Junior 16-17 Hunters throughout the season. “I definitely want to stay super consistent. I’m coming off of a great indoors season, and I want to continue that streak,” said Propp regarding her goals for WEF 2020. “The minute he walks into the ring I know that he wants to win, and you can tell in the way that he presents himself.”

Aside from being competitive this circuit, Propp is also focused on the wellbeing of her horses, saying, “My first and foremost goal is always that all of my horses are happy and healthy, and I know I can trust my team at Brianne Goutal LLC.”

Mackenzie Altheimer of Wesley Chapel, FL, rode Escondido to reserve champion. Altheimer and Escondido, owned by ABA Hunter Ponies, earned a first, second, and third-place ribbons to secure the reserve title.

Terri Irrer and Café Noir Clinch Adult Hunter Championship

Terri Irrer of South Lyon, MI, opened her WEF season with a tricolor in Section A of the Older Adult Amateur Hunter division riding Café Noir. After a year-long break from the show ring, the pair received first, second, and third-place ribbons to earn them the championship in the E.R. Mische Grand Hunter Ring.

Irrer has been riding the 16-year-old Oldenburg gelding, owned by Debra Gross, for four years and is thankful to be back at WEF and in the show ring. “Today I was working on being smooth and straight,” commented Irrer on their performance. “He just went in there and did his job and did it well.”

Terri Irrer and Café Noir. Photo © Sportfot

The pair’s goal for the season is to continue to learn and stay consistent in the adult amateur division.

Café Noir was sidelined from showing last year but came back strong for Irrer, who said, “I’m so excited so have him back in the ring again and I’m so thankful for my wonderful trainer, Heather Irvine, and her staff.”

Irrer describes Café Noir as one of the kindest horses she knows and her favorite to ride. “Everyday I tell the owner, Debra, ‘Have I told you today how much I love him?’ It’s my favorite line of the day!”

Not far behind Irrer was Carolyn Anderson, of Calgary, AB, and Playbook. Anderson rode Playbook to first, second, and fourth placings to secure reserve champion.

Lilly Goldstein and Fenway End Week 1 of the Winter Equestrian Festival by Claiming the Championship in the Small Junior Hunters 15 & Under

WEF hunter competition came to a close during week 1 with Lilly Goldstein and Fenway earning champion in the Small Junior Hunters 15 & Under. Goldstein hails from Argyle, TX, and rode her horse Fenway to two firsts, two thirds, and a sixth-place ribbon to earn the tri-color.

Fenway is owned by Goldstein, and proved himself to the judges by winning the hack and staying consistent throughout both days of the division. “The judges really liked him! He jumped very nice and was super smooth during our rounds,” Goldstein said of her horse’s performance.

Lilly Goldstein and Fenway. Photo © Sportfot

Goldstein has been riding for nine years and currently trains with Courtney and Scott Lenkart of South Haven Farm. She has owned the nine-year-old gelding for two years and loves everything about him, including his big personality, saying, “I love how he acts like a pony! He is so sassy and can have a little attitude.”

Staying consistent in the Small Junior Hunter 15 & Under division with Fenway is Goldstein’s main goal for WEF 2020.

Following close behind Goldstein was Emma Callanan, of Lebanon, NJ, who rode Becky Nuth’s Caitano to reserve champion in the division. Callanan and Caitano received a first, second, third, fourth, and sixth-place honors to earn reserve.