Kristian Roberts repeated as Men’s Gold Division National Champion in Denver (Lynne Owen/VaultingPhotos.com)
Denver, CO – Seven USEF Vaulting National Championships were awarded at the National Western Complex on Sunday when competition in all six individual divisions and the open Pas de Deux division wrapped up. The day saw Kristian Roberts repeat as Male Gold Division National Champion, Elizabeth Ioannou get the best of a three-time defending champion to take top prize in the women’s division, and the Palmer sisters stake their claim as USEF Open Pas de Deux National Champions.
Women’s Individual Championships
Coming into the individual competition in Denver, the story was Mary McCormick looking for a fourth consecutive title in the Gold division, but it was clear from the beginning that she would have competition. The best of that competition came from Mt. Eden Vaulting Club’s Elizabeth Ioannou. Ioannou (Saratoga, CA) was coming off a team championship win on Saturday, and a strong first round individual score of 8.558, before ensuring herself a National Championship with a fluid freestyle effort in round two, and an overall 8.450. Just enough to get the better of McCormick (Woodside, CA) who finished second, and Emily Hogye (Ben Lomond, CA) in third. Ioannou vaulted on Jan Garrod’s 13-year-old Oldenburg gelding Urfreund Rosengaard and was lunged by Emma Seely.
Earning the women’s Silver National Championship was Woodside Vaulter’s Siddhartha Kreaden (Sunnyvale, CA), vaulting on Woodside Vaulters’ nine-year-old Limerick (an Irish Sport horse gelding that has only been a vaulting horse for about eight months) and lunged by Krista Mack.
In the Bronze division, 10-year-old Kristen Kuhn (San Mateo, CA), also of the Woodside Vaulters vaulting club, won the National Championship while vaulting on Limerick and being lunged by Krista Mack.
Men’s Individual Championships
In the Male Gold division Kristian Roberts of Half Moon Bay, California, and representing the Half Moon Bay Vaulters, successfully defended his title with strong performances that scored above seven in both rounds. Vaulting on Jill Palmer’s Shire/Thoroughbred cross gelding Hudson, and lunged by Carolyn Bland, Roberts earned a total score of 7.498. Following him in second with a 6.983 was Eric Garcia (Novato, CA) of the Tambourine Vaulters, and in third with a 6.808 was Gabe Aniello (Redwood City, CA).
In the Silver division, Warm Beach Vaulter’s Kaleb Patterson (Stanwood, WA) earned the National Championship vaulting on Patti Skipton’s 12-year-old Belgian gelding Prize and lunged by Patti Skipton.
Bronze division National Championship honors went to Daniel Janes also of Stanwood, Washington’s Warm Beach Vaulters. Janes vaulted on Patti Skipton’s 15-year-old Belgian gelding Promise and was lunged by Elise Valsquier.
Open Pas de Deux Championship
Sisters Kimberly and Cassidy Palmer (Half Moon Bay, CA) of Half Moon Bay vaulted on Sydney Frankel’s 16-year-old Percheron gelding Cheval to a 7.836 final score, and into the USEF Open Pas de Deux National Championship. The sisters beat out Leah Coe (Golden, CO) and Kristy Nicolo (Hebron, CT) in second place and Kalli Roberts (Silvana, WA) and Daniel Janes in third.
By Andrew Minnick
USEF Team Vaulting Championships were awarded earlier in the week. To read about them, click here.
For more about the USEF/AVA National Championships, go to www.americanvaulting.org/Nationals2013/.
Follow the 2013 U.S. Vaulting Team here.