Category Archives: National Horse Show

NHS 5k Run to Benefit the Kentucky Equine Humane Center

Lexington, KY – August 23, 2018 – The National Horse Show is pleased to announce the Kentucky Equine Humane Center as the official charity partner for the 2018 National Horse Show 5k, held Saturday, November 3rd at 5:00pm outside of the Alltech Arena. A portion of the proceeds that are generated through the annual National Horse Show 5k will benefit this Lexington-based nonprofit organization dedicated to providing a safe haven for horses in need.

The National Horse Show 5k event will kick off an evening of family-friendly entertainment and is open to participants of all ages. At the conclusion of the race, participants are invited in to the Alltech Arena for the National Horse Show Breeders’ Cup Viewing Party and Craft Beer Garden, followed by international show jumping competition. The premier event, the Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Qualifier, will begin promptly at 7:00pm. This world-class event features Olympic level competition from athletes that represent countries all over the world. Each horse and rider combination will be vying for the opportunity to qualify for Longines FEI World Cup™ Finals held the following spring in Gothenburg, Sweden.

All registered participants in the NHS 5k receive complimentary access to the National Horse Show festivities after the race. Children 12 and under are always admitted free!

The Kentucky Equine Humane Center is a 70+ acre facility that is best known as a safe haven for horses in need. The sanctuary takes in horses from any background and offers them a place to rest and rehabilitate before matching them with their perfect forever home. To ensure the best foundational support for these horses, the Kentucky Equine Humane Center collaborates with highly experienced veterinarians, farriers, and training professionals. The center also takes it upon itself to educate the public on the responsibility of equine stewardship to help prevent further horse crisis situations.

“We are excited that this year we are the beneficiary of the NHS 5k,” said Karen Gustin, Executive Director of the Kentucky Equine Humane Society. “We rescue horses from the entire state of Kentucky that have been abused, abandoned, neglected, or are owner surrendered and adopt them out nationally, so to be partnered with an event with the recognition of the National Horse Show is invaluable to our cause.”

To learn more about the Kentucky Equine Humane Center, click here.

Click here to register for the NHS 5k.

To learn more about the National Horse Show, click here.

National Horse Show Announces 2018 NHS Bluegrass Charity Benefit Initiative

Photo: Emily Moffitt and Hilfiger Van De Olmenhoeve.

Lexington, KY – Aug. 17, 2018 – The National Horse Show is excited to announce the 2018 NHS Bluegrass Charity Benefit on Friday, November 2, and Saturday, November 3. Presented by Goshen Hill and Meralex Farm, the inaugural event will host local charities and their participants in Alltech arena at the Kentucky National Horse Park, for a chance to win a cash bonus to support their cause.

In order to participate, 501(c)3 organizations will submit an application and receive a unique ticket code to share with their supporters. This code will give attendees complimentary NHS tickets for either Friday or Saturday night. Through these specific ticket codes, those in attendance can be counted, and the charity with the most supporters in attendance will win the cash bonus. Cash prizes will be awarded to the top three charities with the strongest attendance, with $5,000 awarded to first place, $3,500 to second place, and $1,500 to third.

Friday evening’s event will begin at 7pm with the inaugural $50,000 National Horse Show Hunter Classic. Additionally, the charities in attendance on Friday night will be entered to win an additional cash bonus through an Athlete’s draw, where top hunter riders will draw the names of the charities in attendance. Charities that are chosen by the top three placing riders shall receive an additional bonus: First place will receive a $2,500 bonus, second will receive a $1,000 bonus, and third will receive a $500 bonus.

Starting at 7:00pm on Saturday, the charities will be cheering on competitors in the $250,000 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Lexington.

Winning charities will be announced following each class.

The National Horse Show has a long history of working closely with local charities to help raise money and awareness at the event, including the Grayson Jockey Club and UK Markey Cancer Research Center. If you are interested in applying, you can fill out an application here. The application should include the name of the charity, its website, its 501(c)3 certificate and Tax ID Number, Contact person name, email, and phone number. Charities wishing to get involved must register by October 15.

To learn more about the National Horse Show, click here.

THIS National Horse Show Adult Equitation Championship Qualifying Classes to Begin Sept. 1, 2018

Photo: The THIS VIP Club overlooking the Alltech Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park.

Lexington, KY – Aug. 15, 2018 – Qualifying classes for the brand new Taylor Harris Insurance Services Adult Equitation Championship begin Sept. 1, 2018 for the 2019 calendar year. We encourage all competitions which currently host the ASPCA Maclay and Hamel Foundation NHS 3’3” Medal classes to add this class to their competitive rosters. The National Horse Show is thrilled to be able to provide adult equitation athletes an opportunity to compete at our event, and encourage our fellow horse show managers to support our efforts by offering the qualifying classes for this program during the coming competition year.

The THIS NHS Adult Equitation Championship is open to all adult participants and will not be limited by any qualifying criteria in its inaugural year. The Championship will include a preliminary round, a flat phase, and a final round featuring of a minimum of fifteen riders. Esteemed judges will select a Champion and Reserve, and riders will receive ribbons through tenth place. The trainer of the winning rider will also be recognized with a specialized trophy.

Riders that want to participate in the inaugural event will need to submit their entries to the National Horse Show by 5:00pm EST on September 28, 2018. Judges will present awards to both champion and reserve champion riders, as well as give ribbons through tenth place.

To learn more about the National Horse Show and its entire 2018 class schedule, click here.

ASPCA Maclay Championship Regional Qualifiers Rapidly Approaching

Lexington, KY – July 3, 2017 – With the horse shows well underway, the all-important regional qualifiers for the ASPCA Maclay Horsemanship Championship is rapidly approaching.

The ASPCA Maclay National Championship, to be held this year November 4 in the Alltech Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park, is one of the most prestigious equitation championships in history. Past winners include some of the biggest names in the equestrian sport, including William Steinkraus (1941), Frank Chapot (1948), George Morris (1952), Leslie Burr Howard (1972) and Nicole Shahinian Simpson (1992). Equestrians from all around the country prepare year-round for this highly anticipated event, and the NHS has officially announced the 2018 dates and locations for each of the eight regional qualifying competitions.

Both ASPCA Maclay Regionals for Region 1 (Northeast – CT, MA, ME, NH, RI, VT) and Region 2 (East – NJ, NY, PA) will be held at Old Salem Farm in North Salem, New York Saturday, September 22, 2018. For further details, 914-669-5610 or mary@mmg.management.com.

Region 3 (Southeast – AL, DC, DE, FL, GA, MD, MS, NC, SC, TN, VA, WV) Sunday, September 23, 2018. Southeast Fall Classic Horse Show in Tampa, Florida. For further details, 407-619-0891 or devita124@aol.com.

Region 4 (Midwest – IL, IN, KY, MI, OH) Saturday, September 22, 2018 at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky. For further details, 615-838-7560 or wldwoo@aol.com.

Region 5 (Central – IA, KS, LA, MO, MN, ND, NE, OK, SD, TX, WI) Saturday, September 15, 2018, at the St. Louis Charity Horse Show in Lake St. Louis, Missouri. For further details, 314-308-1162 or stlnchorseshow@aol.com.

Region 6 (Mountain – AZ, CO, NM, UT) Sunday, September 16, 2018 at the Colorado Horse Park in Parker, CO. For further details, 303-841-5550 or email mmaybank@coloradohorsepark.com.

Region 7 (Northwest – AK, ID, MT, OR, WA, WY) Saturday, September 15, 2018 at the The Northwest Autumn Classic in Monroe, Washington. For further details, 360-805-6711 or DIANJNSN@aol.com.

Region 8 (West – CA, HI, NV) Saturday, September 15, 2018 at the Blenheim Fall Tournament in San Juan Capistrano. For details, 949-443-1841 or showpark@aol.com.

Entries for the Regional Maclay Championship classes will close, and must be received by 5 p.m. Eastern time September 1, 2018, at the NHSAA’s office.  If you wish to change your region, you must notify the NHS in writing by August 15, 2018, using the official form provided by the NHSAA that can be found at www.nhs.org.

Hailey Johns Named as Official Junior Ambassador for Leo Conroy Maclay Grant

Hailey Johns competing in the 2017 ASPCA Maclay Equitation Finals. PC: Shawn McMillan Photography.

Lexington, KY – March 21, 2018 – The National Horse Show is pleased to announce 17-year-old Hailey Johns as the new Junior Ambassador for the Leo Conroy Maclay Grant (LCMG). Johns was a recipient of the important grant in 2017 and used it to compete at the National Horse Show in the ASPCA Maclay Equitation Championship.

Johns, who currently trains with Katie Kappler of Katie Kappler LLC, has been an avid equestrian since she was four years old. After a brief introductory phase at a western facility, Johns was introduced to the hunter and jumper disciplines. She competed in the pony divisions and junior hunter classes before making the transition to the equitation ring at age 12.

“I’d wanted to compete in the Maclay Finals for so long and I was so excited to have qualified but the first thing that I asked myself was ‘how am I going to make this possible?’” remarked Johns. “My parents had already completely expended our budget to get me to the regionals so I felt like I needed to cover as much of the expenses as possible.”

That’s when Johns says she and Kappler saw a poster advertising the grant at the regionals facility. “I researched it and I knew that was the best route to go. It seemed like an exceptional opportunity and perfect for me so I applied as soon as I could,” said Johns.

The Leo Conroy Maclay Grant was established in 2015 after the passing of rider and trainer, Leo Conroy. Conroy was an avid supporter of the National Horse Show and especially of the ASPCA Maclay Finals. He spent many years as the co-manager of the National Horse Show and acted as Chairman of the National Horse Show Equitation Committee. To commemorate his dedication and love for the show, the grant is awarded to up to 5 Maclay competitors and 3 Hamel Foundation NHS 3’3″ Equitation Championship competitors each year that demonstrate a need for financial support to participate in their divisions.

The ASPCA Maclay Final championship is considered one of the most prestigious equitation events in the country and hosts many young athletes from across the country.

All riders must qualify through regional competitions in order to compete at the Maclay finals. Those seeking assistance through the LCMG to support their journey are asked to detail an essay on the importance of the show to them and why they are a good choice as a recipient of the grant. The grant accommodates recipients by covering expenses associated with entry fees and stabling as well as a $1,000 stipend to cover additional show-related costs required to compete in the Maclay Final or Hamel Foundation NHS 3’3″ Equitation Championship.

“We are thrilled to have Hailey Johns represent the Leo Conroy Maclay Grant this year,” said Jennifer Burger, President of the National Horse Show. “Hailey is the perfect representation of the type of young person that we strive to help through the LCMG and we are looking forward to utilizing her to get the word out for the 2018 edition of the National Horse Show.”

To learn more about the Leo Conroy Maclay Grant, click here.

To learn more about the National Horse Show, click here.

Denis Lynch and RMF Echo Take Top Class Longines Win in Lexington

Photo: Denis Lynch and RMF Echo. (FEI/Ashley Neuhof)

Six months ago, Denis Lynch (IRL) almost lost his ride on RMF Echo. But in Lexington, the Irish show jumper and the 13-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding clinched top place at the $250,000 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Lexington (USA) at the Kentucky Horse Park’s National Horse Show.

In May, RMF Echo was about to be sold out of Lynch’s stables, but owners Monica and Frank McCourt of Rushy Marsh Farm stepped up to purchase the chestnut so that he could stay with Lynch. That proved a worthwhile decision when the duo prevailed over a world-class field which included three of the top 25 riders on the Longines World Rankings.

“The horse ended up in our stable this winter, and I was actually short a horse,” Lynch recalled. “Then, I started jumping him in some shows at the beginning of the year, and he started progressing to a better horse. He was sold after [CSI 5* Versailles (FRA)], and I was very, very lucky that Rushy Marsh stepped in overnight and secured me the horse, which I’m incredibly grateful for. It was incredible. I’m very, very lucky to have him.”

“Echo’s been unlucky a few times this year, when he’s been beaten at the post. He really deserved this win tonight.” — Denis Lynch (Ireland)

Lynch and “Echo” were one of nine horse-and-rider pairs to advance to the jump-off. They blazed through Michel Vaillancourt’s (CAN) shortened track, stopping the timers in 36.16 seconds and overtaking the lead, which up to that point had been held by Beat Mändli (SUI) and Dsarie, who were winners just last week at the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Washington (USA). Mändli ultimately finished third with a time of 37.80 seconds, while Lauren Tisbo (USA) and Coriandolo di Ribano slotted into second, just missing the top spot when crossing the timers in 36.52 seconds.

“I went as quickly as I could,” Lynch said. “Echo is a naturally very, very quick horse. He’s been unlucky a few times this year, when he’s been beaten at the post. I think there were three or four grand prix where he finished second. I think he really deserved it tonight.”

By Catie Staszak

FEI Media Contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Manager Press Relations
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

Beezie Madden Saves Best for Last at National Horse Show

Photo: Beezie Madden and HHS Hercules.

Lexington, Ky. – Nov. 3, 2017 – The CP National Horse Show featured a different style of show jumping competition with the $35,000 Salamander Hotels and Resorts Accumulator Class CSI4* for the Whitney Stone Memorial Trophy. Local groups were invited out for “Barn Night” to watch as Beezie Madden (USA) and Abigail Wexner’s HHS Hercules took the top prize of the evening.

The class featured 10 obstacles of increasing difficulty, where points were awarded for each fence cleared. Obstacle one jumped without fault was worth one point, obstacle two jumped without fault was worth two points, and so on.

A final fence option called ‘The Joker’ was worth double points. However, if a rider opted for ‘The Joker’ and knocked it down, those points were deducted from the total score. Twenty-three international horses and athletes strived to clear the Michel Vaillancourt-designed course for a perfect score of 65 points. Eleven athletes were able to do just that, finishing with no faults and jumping the high point ‘Joker’ fence without error. Between those 11, it all came down to time.

Laura Kraut (USA) and St. Bride’s Farm’s Whitney were the first to achieve a perfect score of 65 points in a blazing 47.81 seconds to take the early lead for the majority of the class.

None was able to catch Kraut’s time until Madden and the 8-year-old Irish Sport Horse entered the Alltech Arena as the very last to go. The pair finished clear for 65 points in 47.62 seconds to outpace Kraut’s time by 2/10ths of a second to move into the top spot on the leaderboard. Devin Ryan (USA) and his own Cooper finished in third place with 65 points in 48.03 seconds.

Preceding the $35,000 Salamander Hotels and Resorts Accumulator Class CSI4* was the second round of the $100,000 USEF Under 25 National Championship, which saw Jennifer Gates and Alex, owned by Evergate Stables LLC, claim the blue ribbon.

Returning in reverse order from the first round, eight advanced to the jump-off from an original starting field of 20, where Gates was one of five to finish double-clear around Vaillancourt’s technical shortened track.

Mattias Tromp and Avon, owned by Swede Ventures LLC, were the second combination to produce a faultless finish in the jump-off in 37.336 seconds to take over the top spot early on in the class. Next, Daisy Farish and her own Great White crossed the finish line with no faults in 38.767 seconds to move behind Tromp in the standings.

As second to last to go, Gates and Alex raced around the short course, using the 13-year-old Westphalian gelding’s ability to cut in on tight turns to her advantage, and stopped the timers in 36.885 seconds for the win. Tromp finished in second place, while Farish took home third place honors.

The 21-year-old Stanford University senior just recently acquired Alex in July from Audrey Coulter and Copernicus Stables and claimed their first big win together in September at the Rolex Central Park Horse Show in the $25,000 U.S. Open Hollow Creek Farm U25 Grand Prix.

The jumpers kicked off with the $10,000 Equithrive Amateur-Owner/Junior Jumper competition, where David Oberkircher and Southfields Farm LLC’s Tyson De Verteveuille claimed the win with a quick, clear round in 65.544 seconds.

Close behind was Lacey Gilbertson, who finished in second place aboard Seabrook Farm LLC’s Baloppi in a time of 65.830 seconds, while Alex Parrish claimed third place in 66.454 seconds with Lexander Farm LLC’s Divace.

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Emily Moffitt Makes Winning Debut at CP National Horse Show

Photo: Emily Moffitt and Hilfiger Van De Olmenhoeve.

Lexington, Ky. – Nov. 2, 2017 – The CP National Horse Show featured the $130,000 CP Grand Prix International Open Jumpers CSI4*-W. Competing for the first time at the historic event, Great Britain’s Emily Moffitt claimed one of the biggest wins of her career to date, along with the Walter B. Devereux Memorial Challenge Trophy, aboard Hilfiger Van De Olmenhoeve.

Course designer Michel Vaillancourt tested 43 international horses and athletes over a 13-fence track in the first round. Out of the 18 combinations who jumped clear, only 14 returned to battle it out in the jump-off, while others elected to save their mounts for the highly anticipated $250,000 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Lexington CSI4*-W.

Beezie Madden (USA) was the first to navigate the short course with no faults, piloting Darry Lou, owned by Abigail Wexner, to a time of 37.260 seconds.

Laura Kraut (USA), winner of the $35,000 International Open Jumpers Welcome Speed CSI4* with Whitney, followed Madden and produced another double-clear performance with Confu in 36.990 seconds to move into the first place position.

Moffitt was the fourth out of five combinations to complete the jump-off fault-free, riding the 10-year-old Belgian Warmblood owned by Poden Farms. It was Kraut and partner Nick Skelton who originally found Hilfiger Van De Olmenhoeve for Moffitt and the pair has since established a strong, winning partnership, even contributing to Great Britain’s gold medal in the young rider team competition at the FEI European Jumping Championship in August.

The 19-year-old, who trains with British Olympic gold medalist Ben Maher, crossed the finish line one second ahead of Kraut, her former trainer, in 35.700 seconds for the win, while Kraut claimed second place and Madden rounded out the top three.

Prior to the highlight event, the Alltech Arena welcomed 25 international horses and athletes to vie for top honors in the $35,000 Palm Beach Masters Series International Open Jumpers Speed CSI4*.

The faults converted speed class saw Devin Ryan of the United States and his own Cooper post one of the fastest times early on in the class as 10th in the order-of-go, despite incurring faults, in 66.310 seconds. However, Jessica Springsteen (USA) and new mount Volage Du Val Henry, a Selle Français mare owned by SCEA Elevage De Voise, blazed around the course, designed by Vaillancourt, fault-free in 65 seconds, which would prove to be unbeatable throughout the remainder of the competition.

In the end, Ryan settled for third place honors, while Andrew Ramsay (USA) and The Doodle Group’s Cocq A Doodle finished in second place in a time of 65.530 seconds after faults.

The USEF Under 25 National Championship began with the $15,000 faults converted speed competition, where high school senior Madison Goetzmann rode her own Prestigious to the win with a speedy, fault-free round in a time of 61.968 seconds.

Goetzmann and the 10-year-old Westphalian gelding partnered less than a year ago, but have found great success in the jumpers throughout the year. The 17-year-old junior rider from Syracuse, New York has proved her versatility, winning the Region 2 ASPCA/NHSAA Maclay Championship with hopes of also capturing the ASPCA Maclay National Championship.

Abigail McArdle and Plain Bay Sale’s Chuck Berry 8 were close behind with a time of 62.784 seconds, while Jennifer Gates followed in third aboard Evergate Stables LLC’s Alex in 64.473 seconds.

Jumper competition kicked off with the Equithrive Amateur-Owner/Junior Jumper Welcome Stake, presented by Horse Network. 16-year-old Samantha Cohen and her own Carmen bested a field of 29 horse-and-rider combinations to take home the win.

Nine jumped clear over Vaillancourt’s first round course to advance to the jump-off, where David Oberkircher and Tyson De Verteveuille, owned by Southfields Farm LLC, were the early clear pathfinders in 39.424 seconds. Cohen and the 10-year-old KWPN mare took over the top spot two rounds later in 38.837 seconds. Their lead held throughout the remaining six rounds to garner them the first place prize and the “Skymaster” Memorial Trophy. Daisy Farish and Stone Ridge Farms, LLC’s Alberto II finished in second place in 38.894 seconds, while Oberkircher finished in third place.

Professional Hunters Highlight Halloween Competition at CP National Horse Show

Photo: Scott Stewart and William Hill.

Lexington, Ky. – Oct. 31, 2017 – The 2017 CP National Horse Show at the Kentucky Horse Park got back underway on Tuesday with the professional hunter divisions. The nation’s best hunter horses and riders came together once again to kick off their respective divisions at the historic event on Halloween.

The morning commenced with the High Performance Conformation Hunter division, sponsored and presented by the Wheeler Family, where Kathryn Haley and Outshine, owned by Alexandra Worthington, won the first over fences class and the Yvonne Schulthess Memorial Challenge Trophy. Scott Stewart and Lucador, owned by Dr. Betsee Parker, won Tuesday’s handy round as well as the model class in addition to the Baroness of Locheil Perpetual Trophy and the “Henry the Hawk” Memorial Trophy.

In the Green Conformation Hunter over fences class, Havens Schatt and Playmaker, owned by JT Farm, claimed the blue ribbon. Schatt and the Holsteiner gelding have only been competing together for two months but show winning potential after their debut at the National Horse Show on Tuesday. Both the handy and model classes of the division once again went to Stewart, this time aboard Private Life, owned by Dr. Parker. Stewart and the 6-year-old gelding have had a very successful indoor season, winning the Green Conformation Hunter championship at the Washington International Horse Show, the Pennsylvania National Horse Show and Capital Challenge Horse Show.

Next up in the Alltech Arena was the Goshen Hill Green 3’6″ Hunter division, presented by Ms. Caroline Moran. Last to go in the classic round was Stewart and Luster, owned by Dr. Parker. The pair impressed judges Susan Schoellkopf and Robert Bielefeld to win the class, while Stewart also claimed third place with Wonderly, owned by Dr. Parker. In the handy round, Daniel Geitner and Walk the Moon, an Oldenburg gelding owned by Lynn Seithel, took home the win.

The Oare & Adikes-Hill Green 3’9″ Hunter division, presented by Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Oare and Ms. Patricia Adikes-Hill, saw Stewart grab back-to-back blue ribbons in the over fences and handy rounds with William Hill, owned by Gochman Sport Horse LLC. The pair have experienced great success this indoors season, winning the Green 3’9″ Hunter championship at the Capital Challenge Horse Show. Megan Young is also in the hunt for a tricolor ribbon in the division after riding to a second place finish in the classic round aboard EHM Equestrian LLC’s 9-year-old Holsteiner gelding, Kenan.

In the Judith Murch High Performance Hunter division, presented by the Corrigan family and Winners Circle Trailer Sales, Jennifer Hannan and Olympic Fire, owned by Roger Smith, clinched top honors and the “Captain Flash” Challenge Trophy in the classic round. Stewart maintained his winning ways, besting the competitive field to take the top three spots and the Edyth Lindner Trophy in the handy round with Catch Me in first, owned by Gochman Sport Horse LLC, A Million Reasons in second and Cameo in third place, both owned by Dr. Parker.

In the classic round of the Woodland Way, Inc. Amateur-Owner 18–35 3’3″ Hunter division, presented by Ms. Margaret O’Meara, Stephanie Danhakl rode to a one-two finish on her own Warmblood geldings Enough Said and Quest, respectively. Third place classic round finisher, Kendall Meijer, claimed the handy round victory aboard Moonwalk, owned by Copper Fox LLC.

The Meralex Farm and Hunt Ltd. Amateur-Owner Over 35 3’3″ Hunter division, presented by Ms. Bryan Baldwin and Ms. Gretchen Hunt, saw Seithel and her own 18-year-old gelding Walk The Line claim both the over fences and handy rounds.

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Jaden Porter Claims Inaugural National Horse Show 3’3″ Equitation Championship

Jaden Porter and Dragonfly’s Corleone B.

Lexington, Ky. – Oct. 29, 2017 – The 2017 CP National Horse Show kicked off on Sunday with an exciting brand new event: the National Horse Show 3’3″ Equitation Championship. Jaden Porter became the first name to be inscribed on the commemorative trophy, which will be proudly displayed at the Kentucky Horse Park Museum.

The inaugural National Horse Show 3’3″ Equitation Championship did not require riders to be prequalified in order to participate and was open to junior members of US Equestrian or Equestrian Canada who have never competed in any of the following national equitation finals with fences at 3’6″ in height: ASPCA Maclay National Championship, Dover Saddlery/USEF Hunter Seat Medal Final, Platinum Performance/USEF Show Jumping Talent Search Finals (East or West), WIHS Equitation Final, Jump Canada Medal Final or the North American Junior Equitation Championship.

Sunday’s National Horse Show 3’3″ Equitation Championship included a preliminary over fences round, which saw 47 horses and riders come forward to contest the course designed by Bobby Murphy. Judges Robin Rost and Walter T. Kees invited the top 20 riders to return to the Alltech Arena for a flat phase and a final over fences round. After all three rounds were completed, the judges opted to test the top four riders: Jada Fuleky, Molly Canfield, Caroline Blake and Porter.

The test consisted of six obstacles and challenged riders with a trot fence as well as asking for a halt after cantering over the first two oxers.

Porter, 14 years old from St. Louis, Missouri and Wellington, Florida, was first in the order-of-go in Sunday’s first over fences round. With the help of trainer Stephanie Peterson of Dragonfly Farms, she and Dragonfly’s Corleone B remained consistent throughout all four rounds to come out on top as the first-ever winner of the National Horse Show 3’3″ Equitation Championship.

Finishing in reserve was Blake, trained by Cynthia Williams of New England Farm, aboard Larry, while Canfield, trained by Lorrie Canady of Galway Farm, and Caprioso 2 rounded out the top three.

For 84 years, the National Horse Show has hosted the ASPCA Maclay National Championship, the most highly sought-after prize in equitation for the country’s top junior athletes. With the addition of the National Horse Show 3’3″ Equitation Championship, riders who have dreams of becoming the next winner of the ASPCA Maclay National Championship have the opportunity to hone their skills in the same ring as their 3’6″ counterparts.

The National Horse Show 3’3″ Equitation Championship will be held annually the weekend before the National Horse Show in the Alltech Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park using the same format as the ASPCA Maclay National Championship with fences set at 3’3″ in height.

While no qualifying classes were required for the 2017 event, qualifying classes and specifications for the 2018 National Horse Show 3’3″ Equitation Championship began on Sept. 1.

For information regarding the National Horse Show 3’3″ Equitation Championship competition and its rules and regulations, click here.