OCALA, FL (February 1, 2012) – Charlene Graham of Fairport, New York proved this week that consistency pays off as she and her own Capricette collected three top-five finishes to clinch the Marshall & Sterling Children’s/Adult Jumper Championship at HITS Ocala. After four legs of competition and a Bonus award, $20,500 in prize money was awarded to Children’s/Adult jumpers.
Graham sat in second place overall after the first two legs held during the first pre-circuit week of competition, then rode to fourth place in the Friday’s third leg and second place in Sunday’s final leg to secure the overall championship. She edged Wendy Libert of Hughesville, Maryland and Mr. & Mrs. John Bartko’s Papillion Peanut by just one point for the win with 112 total points.
“This was the first time I’ve seriously competed in the jumper ring,” said Graham. “I got this horse back in July and it’s been so much fun competing with her – she’s been fantastic. The entire series was a blast. I really enjoyed the format and the amount of prize money offered was great.”
To conclude the multi-phase class, an additional $5,000 Bonus was awarded to the eight competitors who accumulated the most points throughout all four legs of competition with top honors being given to Graham and second to Libert. Stephanie Novas of Lake Forest, Illinois aboard Lance Williamson’s FastBreak rounded out the top three overall with 109 total points. Ashley Reed of Winnetka, Illinois, who led in the standings after the first two legs finished in fourth place with her own Madonna with 103 points. Sunny Drescher of Hinesburg, Vermont and Banner Farm’s Barolo capped the top five overall standings with 95 points.
“This couldn’t have been any more fun,” said Graham. “This is only our fourth or fifth show together, so I’m really excited to see what we can do. I’d like to thank Ashmeadow Farm for all their support. This is the only jumper we have in our barn right now so it’s great to see everyone from the barn who came out to support me.”
To view complete results from each leg of the $20,500 Marshall & Sterling Children’s/Adult Jumper Championship, visit HitsShows.com.
$4,000 Marshall & Sterling Children’s/Adult Jumper Championship – 3rd leg
To kick off the weekend Reed put on a repeat performance of her first leg victory and earned the blue ribbon in Friday’s third leg of competition. Out of the 30 riders that challenged the 10-effort course, Reed was one of 17 to enter the jump-off.
“My horse is all about speed, so these courses are perfect for her,” she said.
Reed posted a time of 38.028 seconds in the jump-off and was one of only eight to go double clear. Following close behind Reed was Novas and Lance Williamson’s Little Wayne in second place with a time of 40.022 seconds.
Rounding out the top five in the third leg was Libert aboard Papillion Peanut in third, Graham and Capricette in fourth, and Kristin Latimer of Riverton, New Jersey with her own The Icon in fifth, respectively.
$5,000 Marshall & Sterling Child/Adult Jumper Championship – 4th leg
The fourth and final leg of the Championship capped the second week of pre-circuit competition at HITS Ocala. Novas sealed her top-three overall finish with a win in the final leg in the irons of FastBreak. The first round offered 12 jumping efforts to 29 total competitors and a seven-effort jump-off round to 12 clear pairs. Novas was one of eight to go double clear with a time of 34.235 seconds.
Novas and FastBreak challenged the course with two competitors remaining. Libert and Papillion Peanut followed Novas, but couldn’t deliver the speed. The pair finished the second round course in 34.663 seconds for the red ribbon, followed by Graham and Capricette who delivered a clean round in 38.385 seconds to finish third.
Rounding out the top five was Katlynn Butler of Mechanicsville, Virginia aboard her own LaBonne in fourth place and Morgan Bailey of West Palm Beach, Florida in the irons of her own Donald in fifth place.
About the Marshall & Sterling League
The Marshall & Sterling League was designed to enhance the level of competition for children and adult riders, with an opportunity to qualify for a prestigious National Finals competition. Now celebrating their 21st year, the Marshall & Sterling League features 14 divisions of competition. Riders who are members of the League had the opportunity to earn points throughout the year by competing in Marshall & Sterling classes in order to qualify for the Marshall & Sterling League Finals, held at HITS-on-the-Hudson in Saugerties, New York.
The Marshall & Sterling League is proudly sponsored by Marshall & Sterling Insurance, Inc. Marshall & Sterling Insurance, Inc., founded in 1864, is among the largest privately owned insurance agencies in the United States. For more than a quarter century, Marshall & Sterling has protected precious equine assets with unparalleled service and support, whether the family hunter, a champion racehorse or a commercial farm. An employee-owned company, Marshall & Sterling is recognized throughout the nation as a leader in providing exceptional service and support. The company maintains a national presence and is licensed in all 50 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands. For more information contact Joe Norick at 800-333-3766, extension 270, 805-338-0099 or JNorick@MarshallSterling.com.