Laura Bishop and Vinyasa ©Sportfot.
Mill Spring, NC – July 13, 2019 – The USHJA Zone 3 & 4 Jumper Team and Platinum Championships are proudly hosted at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) July 11-14 as part of Tryon Summer 5 competition. Welcoming those who qualified in the 1.10-1.15m Children and Adult Amateur, 1.20-1.25m Junior and Amateur, and 1.30-1.35m Junior and Amateur Divisions, the event consists of three days of team and individual competition. 2019 USHJA Zone 3 & 4 Jumper Team and Platinum Championships participants are navigating courses designed by Bernardo Costa Cabral (POR) in Tryon Stadium at TIEC, taking center stage at the venue. The week began with Individual competition on Thursday, with Team competition hosted Friday ahead of Saturday’s Individual finals.
Zone 3 & 4 Adult-Amateur Jumper Team Competition Captured by Zone 3 Team 3
On Friday afternoon, 19 pairs competed in the Zone 3 & 4 Adult-Amateur Jumper Team Competition. Zone 3 Team 3 was victorious after the second round of competition, taking home the gold medal. The team was comprised of Diana Harris (Creedmoor, NC) on Flair WS, Megan Kutcher (Fletcher, NC) on So High, Laura Bishop (Washington, DC) on Vinyasa, and Juliette Landis (Daniels, WV) on Shiraz.
The team unanimously agreed that they have enjoyed the courses Cabral created for competitors. Bishop revealed she had to adjust some of her strategy going into round two: “I thought it was a really fun course. In the first round I couldn’t get him off my right leg, so I went into the second round and really got him off the right leg and he jumped clean for me!”
Bishop, competing at Zone Championships for the first time as part of a team, was unsure if she would get the opportunity to participate in USHJA Zone Championships again once she started college, she revealed. “I go to George Washington University, and my parents were going to make me sell my horse when I [went to college], but I got a full-ride scholarship through ROTC. I was like, ‘can we keep the horse now?’ So I still have a horse and, hopefully, will be a Marine Corps Officer in two years.” Bishop continued, “I went in Zone 9 Champs in 2015 and didn’t have a team, so it was really nice for me to come back and have a team experience. USHJA has done a great job at developing this program over the past four years since I did it.”
First-time Zone Championship qualifier Kutcher, an Asheville native, was excited to share this experience so close to home. “This is my first year qualifying for Zones, so it’s been a very exciting experience and I feel like it’s a wonderful team experience to go through,” Kutcher commented. “This is actually our home base; we live in Asheville, and love coming down here. It’s been a little hot, but it’s such a wonderful facility and we’ve really enjoyed it.”
Children’s Team Championship Dominated by Zone 4 Team 4
Zone 4 Team 4 took Gold in the Children’s Team Championship, finishing two rounds with a total of one fault to claim the win. Naomi Hartman (Milton, FL) aboard her own La Vita Loca, Ana Ramos (Ocala, FL) aboard her own Jorno, Avery Moore (Atlanta, GA) riding her own Papaver LS, and Caterina Sinibaldi (Hoover, AL) riding her own Cartegena handled the pressure of the Tryon Stadium atmosphere as a team to earn the victory for a memorable experience that was “stressful, but really fun,” they shared.
“It has been a journey to get here, definitely,” said Hartman. “I have not really been doing 1.10m a whole lot because my horse and I have been kind of in-and-out. So, this has been a really good experience for me to get back into the saddle and win this! We have never been to a horse show this size. I’ve had my Thoroughbred for about two years now, and doing this is the biggest accomplishment – especially doing Zones for the first time and to win with my team – it is amazing.”
Ramos, who’s been paired with her horse since January, shared, “It was really fun; it has always been like a dream, and this is my first Zone Championships. I am used to only controlling what I can do [as an Individual] and obviously you can’t control what other people do. So you really have to put your trust in other people.”
Teammate Moore echoed: “This is my first year here, and in past years I’ve gotten to see my friends come and compete. I never had the chance to, and now I have, and it is a dream come true. It was super exciting and I am really happy that I got to come,” she said. “This is my favorite show venue, and we come here all the time. I am so excited to participate in such a big event.”
Sinibaldi agreed, sharing, “It was my first year competing in the US, and so coming here is a dream and to win is amazing. I love it. I want to come back next year!”
Team chef d’equipe Megan Thiel is a second-year coach, and got involved after bringing her students in the past. “I love this program. It is a great educational program; it goes farther than their ribbons today. They get [free] clinics after this, and they get to be gold star athletes. The trainers also get to be gold star coaches, and it really helps everybody.” She concluded, “Also, I think it is a super interesting way for them to compete, on a team versus individually. You never know, some of these divisions today were really anybody’s luck. It is really cool, and keeps you on your toes all day.”
USHJA Zone 3 & 4 Jumper Championships and Platinum Championship Team Results:
In Zone 3/4 Platinum Jumper 1.40m-1.45m Team Competition, Zone 4 Team 1 took Gold after the performances by Marquee Cincotta (Odessa, FL) aboard her own Granaat, Ashley Pace (Atlanta, GA) and her own ZZ-Top VH Schaarbroek Z, Jesse Smith (Wellington, FL) and her own Charles Pinckney Windsor Z, and Lauren Balcomb (Citra, FL) and her own Verdini D’Houtveld Z.
Zone 3 dominated Zone 3/4 Junior/Amateur 1.30m-1.35m Team Competition, with rides from Angela Pollex (Troutman, NC) and her own Elbo VDL, Kara Jones (Cornelius, NC) and her own End Game, Emma Pell (Winchester, VA) and Santos, Judy Sutton (Maggie Valley, NC) and her own Win A Date.
Zone 4 took the win in Zone 3/4 Amateur 1.20m-1.25m Jumper Team Competition, on the effort of Ashley Ann McGehee (Jacksonville Beach, FL) aboard her own Mr. Snuffleupagus, Caroline Monaghan (Birmingham, AL) and Sevani, and MacKenzie McGehee (Jacksonville, FL) riding her own Fiona Van’t Paradus.
In Zone 3/4 Junior 1.20m-1.25m Jumper Team Competition, Zone 3 took the win, with the following riders contributing to the score: Lucy Reich (Birmingham, AL) aboard her own Cuchio Z, Madison Jones (Longwood, FL) riding her own Bijoux Z, Celia Cram (Aiken, SC) and her own Auspicious, and Anissa Jessee (Tampa, FL) riding Stransky’s Mission Farms Inc.’s Nenuphar’Jac.
USHJA Zone 3 & 4 Jumper Championships and Platinum Championship First Round Individual Results:
In Thursday’s first round of USHJA Platinum Jumper Championship division, Nicole Loochtan (Lincolnshire, IL) and her own Caiman des Sequoias rode to victory, stopping the timers at 70.3 seconds. Lauren Balcomb (Citra, FL) and her own Verdini finished in second with a time of 70.758 seconds. Finishing off the podium was Marquee Cincotta (Odessa, FL) and her own Granaat, finishing with a final time of 71.738-seconds.
The first Individual round of competition for the USHJA Zone 3/4 Junior/Amateur 1.30-1.35m Jumper Division saw Roberto Teran (Malabar, FL) and his own Arnac Du Mazes earn the first-place position with a clear round and time of 60.596 seconds. Second place in the division was awarded to Fox View Farm’s FVF Sailor Man with Christina Webb (Raleigh, NC), navigating the course fault-free in a time of 62.647 seconds. Hallie Rush (Prospect, TN) and her own Emiel earned third-place honors with a clear round in a time of 65.736 seconds.
Fiona Van’t Paradijs, owned and ridden by Mackenzie McGehee (Jacksonville, FL) was awarded first-place honors in the first round of the USHJA Zone 3/4 Amateur 1.20-1.25m Jumper Division, stopping the clock with 57.358 seconds. Susie Fried (Macon, GA) piloted Highridge Farm LLC’s Hakini to a second-place finish with a time of 60.948 seconds, and Ashley Ann McGehee aboard her own Mr. Snuffleupagus received third for their effort with a time of 63.434 seconds.
Natalie Pedley (Wellington, FL) and her own True Blue Mate came out on top during the first round of the Individual Zone 3/4 Junior 1.20-1.25m Jumper Division, finishing with a time of 55.848 seconds. Reed Training & Sales LLC’s Goliath, ridden by Addison Reed (Mechanicsville, VA), stopped the clock with 61.131 seconds to finish in second place, while Maya Aryal (Fairfax, VA) and her own mount Ra finished closely behind with a time of 61.28 for third place.
Alexis Mierzwa (Winchester, VA) and her own Ever Sinful raced to first place in the first round of the USHJA Zone 3/4 Adult-Amateur Jumper Championship Division with a time of 56.197 seconds. Laura Bishop (Washington, D.C.) followed closely behind with a time of 56.698 seconds aboard her own mount, Vinyasa. Tinita Hughes (Athens, GA) finished with third-place honors with Proximo, stopping the clock at 57.684 seconds.
The first round individual competition for the USHJA Zone 3/4 Children’s Jumper Division saw Ana Ramos (Ocala, FL) aboard her own Jorno gallop to victory, stopping the clock at 56.515 seconds. Avery Moore (Atlanta, GA) and her own Papaver LS followed closely behind with a final time of 56.659 seconds, earning second place. Finally, Ella Domenicone (Alpharetta, GA) and her own S-Acorada Donaldson finished with a time of 58.967 seconds, granting them third-place honors.
For more information and results, please visit www.Tryon.com.