Lexington, KY – November 4, 2012 – It was another fairytale day for Jacob Pope of Columbia, MD, during the 2012 Maclay National Championship for the ASCPA Alfred B. Maclay Horsemanship Classes. The Alltech National Horse Show, 129th Edition, welcomed 152 riders for the prestigious event. At the end of the day, it was 18-year-old Pope whose horsemanship outshined the rest to capture the coveted winning title after four challenging rounds of competition.
“I am still in shock that I won,” smiled Pope after the victory gallop. “It is unreal, and being on the trophy with such legends such as George Morris, and everyone else that is on the trophy. I just can’t believe it.”
For the first round, riders had to compete over a technical course designed by judges George H. Morris and Hap Hansen. They began with an “S” shaped bending line with the iconic ASPCA jump to a triple bar, followed by a blind turn to a steady gymnastic line. Then riders made another “S” line with two Swedish oxers and a natural skinny jump with no wings in the middle. Finally they galloped home to a wall fence towards the in gate. While some riders had difficulties during the first round, the course was very inviting overall and gave each rider many opportunities to show off their equitation.