Julie Curtin and Whitney.
The morning started out with the $2,500 USHJA National Hunter Derby, presented by Legend, and Wesley Wilson’s Whitney, ridden by Julie Curtin of Woodstock, Georgia, galloped away with the blue besting thirteen horse and rider teams to win the class with a combined score of 182. Curtin and Whitney led the class after posting the highest round score of 90 and maintained their lead in the Handy round after earning a second round score of 92.
Naddel, owned by Hilary Baylor and ridden by Daniel Geitner of Aiken, South Carolina rode home with a second place finish, after posting a first round score of 86 and a second round score of 91 for a combined total of 177.
Right behind Geitner and Naddel and grabbing the third place ribbon was Karen Bailey’s Troubadour, piloted by Sarah Milliren of Jenks, Oklahoma, after earning a first and second round score of 88 for a combined total of 176 points.
Cheryl Rubinstein’s Capisce, ridden by Ashley Hotz of Eads, Tennessee, placed fourth after earning a first round score of 87 and second round score of 85 for a combined total of 172.
Cappriccio, owned by Samantha Kench and ridden by Carolyn Bell of Alpharetta, Georgia, earned a fifth place ribbon after posting a first round score of 89 and second round score of 74 for a combined total of 163.
Sixth place honors went to Charisma, owned and ridden by Shea Taylor of Germantown, Tennessee, after earning a combined score of 157, and seventh place was awarded to Sue Gibbs’ Gioia, ridden by Vick Russell of Columbus, North Carolina, after posting an overall score of 155.
Stephanie Von Bidder of Aiken, South Carolina piloted her own Ariana to an eighth place finish, while After Party, owned and ridden by Caitlin Davies of Milton, Georgia, placed ninth.
My BFF, owned and ridden by Erin Cummins of Carmel, Indiana, placed tenth, and Tim Sweat of Milton, Georgia and his own Autograph placed eleventh. Perfect Gentleman, owned and ridden by Brittany Wyatt of Fayetteville, Georgia, wrapped up the class in twelfth place.
Friday night the $10,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby took to the Olympic Arena over a beautiful course designed by Classic Company Course Designer Joe Carnicom.
More Optimistic, owned by Maida Clifton and ridden by Ashley Hotz of Eads, Tennessee, stole the show and took the win after earning an overall score of 348.
Daniel Geitner of Aiken, South Carolina took both the second and third place ribbons with True Story, owned by Kelly Sims and Jordan Carlson’s Avignon, both earning overall scores of 341; however, True Story was awarded four bonus options in their Handy round which secured the second place ribbon.
Valentine, owned by Liddy Strickland and ridden by Sarah Milliren of Jenks, Oklahoma, placed fourth with their combined score of 331, and fifth place went to Tall Paul, owned and ridden by Vick Russell of Columbus, North Carolina, with an overall score of 324.
Milliren returned to the winner’s circle, this time in the irons of Liddy Strickland’s Judgement Call for the sixth place ribbon after posting a combined score of 310, and seventh was awarded to Chuck Waters’ Caruso, ridden by Ashley Scott Armstrong of Atlanta, Georgia.
Geitner returned to collect the eighth place ribbon with Allison Mills’ Sky Pilot, and ninth was awarded to La Roxx, owned and ridden by Isabel Harbour of Alpharetta, Georgia.
“We all really enjoyed watching the hunters compete under the lights in the Olympic Arena,” commented Bob Bell. “The course was just stunning,” he added.