Tag Archives: Pony Finals

Overall Grand Pony Hunter Champions Are Awarded at 2021 USEF Pony Finals

Maddie Tosh and Brixton.

Lexington, Ky – Aug. 14, 2021 – As the 2021 USEF Pony Finals, presented by Honor Hill Farm, nears its closing date, the 2021 and 2020 Overall Grand Pony Hunter Champions were crowned at the end of each division on Saturday during day five of competition. The highly accomplished junior rider, Maddie Tosh, was the first to emerge victorious as the Overall Grand Green Pony Hunter Champion aboard Betsee Parker’s Brixton after claiming the division champion title in the Large Green Pony Hunters. Lily Epstein and Pepsi were awarded the 2020 Grand Green Pony Hunter Champion title after dominating the competition during days one and two of the event earlier in the week. Emma Dyson and D’Artagnan took home the Overall Grand Regular Pony Hunter Champion after earning champion in the Large Pony Hunter division, while Elle Boyd and Baroness of Locheil garnered the Medium Pony Hunter division championship title.

Alexis Bauman and Miracles Happen Claim Gold in USEF Pony Jumper National Championships Individual Competition

After three days of fierce competition in the 2021 Pony Jumper National Championships, Alexis Bauman claimed the Gold Medal with her own Welsh pony, Miracles Happen. The Silver Medal was awarded to Michaela Munson on Bluebelle, while the Bronze Medal was presented to Audrey Turner who piloted Prince Oliver. The class was the culmination of the Pony Jumper National Championships that added yet another dimension to the variety of pony classes at this year’s USEF Pony Finals, presented by Honor Hill Farm.

For more information about the Kentucky Horse Shows, please visit www.KentuckyHorseShows.com.

Farewell and Lumiere Are Crowned Medium Green Hunter Champions at USEF Pony Finals

Lillian Geitner and Farewell.

Hunter ponies and riders returned to the Rolex Ring for day four of competition at the 2021 USEF Pony Finals, presented by Honor Hill Farm, where they vied for the championship title of the 2021 and 2020 Medium Green Pony Hunters. Two more champions were crowned following successful over fences classes, as Lillian Geitner and Farewell held the trophy for the Medium Green Hunter division, while Susannah Morrell and Lumiere lead the victory gallop in the 2020 Medium Green Hunters.

Zone 10a Grabs Gold in the 2021 Pony Jumper National Championship Team Competition

The 2021 Pony Jumper National Championship Team Competition was the highlight of the Pony Jumper competition at the USEF Pony Finals, presented by Honor Hill Farms. The four-person team from Zone 10a took home the gold medal and continued a winning streak for young California equestrians at this year’s event. The team from Zone 1/7 were rewarded with a silver medal for their efforts, while team Combined Flyers were the bronze medal winning team.

For more information about the Kentucky Horse Shows, please visit www.KentuckyHorseShows.com.

USEF Pony Jumper Championships Get Underway at USEF Pony Finals

Audrey Turner and Prince Oliver.

Thursday afternoon saw pony jumpers take over the Claiborne Arena for Phase I of individual competition during the USEF Pony Jumper National Championships. A competitive field of 24 eager competitors vied for a qualifying score to earn their place in the second phase of individual championship competition. North Carolina’s Audrey Turner and her pony, Prince Oliver, proved to be the most efficient duo in the class, posting the fastest time with a no-fault score.

Lauren Zarnegin and Rollingwoods Knee Deep Reign Supreme in Regular Small Pony Hunters

Small Pony Hunters were the highlight in the Rolex Arena Thursday afternoon to conclude day three of competition at the 2021 USEF Pony Finals, presented by Honor Hill Farms. 86 small ponies came back in reverse order of their current standings in the class to try their hand at the nine obstacle course. Lauren Zarnegin and Rollingwoods Knee Deep ultimately earned the coveted Regular Small Hunter Champion title after leading the way in the over fences, under saddle, and model.

For more information about the Kentucky Horse Shows, please visit www.KentuckyHorseShows.com.

Kentucky Horse Shows LLC and USEF Notice of Competition Cancellations

Lexington, Ky. – August 1, 2020 – We have been notified that two more individuals have tested positive for COVID-19, after attending the Kentucky Summer Classic, for a total of four reported cases. US Equestrian and Kentucky Horse Shows prioritize the safety of our members, participants, support teams, staff, and their families. To mitigate the risk of spread of the virus, USEF and the competition organizer together have made the decision to cancel the Kentucky Summer Classic and to cancel the USEF Pony Finals event scheduled to start Tuesday, August 4th. These cancellations will give the competition organizer time to sanitize the venue and determine whether competition can resume later this month.

With regard to the new reports, one individual worked in Barns 9 & 10 with one of the previously reported individuals. Both of these individuals have been off competition grounds since Friday, July 31. The other newly reported individual is a braider who worked in multiple barns and has been off the grounds since early August 1.

Per the requirements of the USEF COVID-19 Action Plan, we are notifying all individuals who were in attendance at the competition.  Although contact tracing is primarily the responsibility of public health agencies, in accordance with CDC guidelines we are asking these individuals for the names of others at the competition that they had close contact with starting from 48 hours before their symptoms appeared so that we can inform those persons directly that they may have been exposed to the virus.

If you believe you have been exposed to the virus, please follow the ten recommendations from the CDC, found here.

Information about testing for COVID-19 can be found here.

Please be reminded that if you test positive for COVID-19 within fourteen (14) days following a competition you attended, you must notify the competition organizer and USEF.

For additional information, please contact Hugh Kincannon at hak@kentuckyhorseshows.com.

Layover stabling will be available at the Kentucky Horse Park during the week of August 3-9 for those exhibitors whose plans have been disrupted by the cancellation of the final day of the Kentucky Summer Classic and the USEF Pony Finals. Contact Pat Duncan at 503-510-8797 for information.

Kat Fuqua Outshines the Field in Marshall & Sterling/USEF Pony Medal Finals

Kat Fuqua and Prestige.

Lexington, Ky. – Aug. 11, 2019 – The 2019 USEF Pony Finals, presented by Collecting Gaits Farm, drew to a close Sunday, with Kat Fuqua claiming the top honors in what is hailed as the capstone class of the week, the Marshall & Sterling/USEF Pony Medal Finals, to conclude her trip to the Kentucky Horse Park on a high note. Fuqua bested a field of nearly 200 riders aboard small, medium, and large ponies over two rounds of competition to emerge victorious with the ride on Prestige. The win marks Fuqua’s second of the week, after she piloted her own Prestige to the championship in the Large Regular Pony Hunters.

Website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Contact: Rebecca Walton
phone 561.753.3389
rjw@phelpsmediagroup.com

Maddie Tosh and Alexa Lignelli Victorious with Hunter Championships at 2019 USEF Pony Finals

Lexington, Ky. – Aug. 10, 2019 – Action in the Walnut Ring concluded Saturday at the 2019 USEF Pony Finals, presented by Collecting Gaits Farm, with Maddie Tosh and Dr. Betsee Parker’s Bit of Love adding to their trophy collection as they were honored as the Grand Regular Pony Hunter champions, the most coveted title of the weekly hunter competition. The award marks the second grand championship of the week for both Tosh and Dr. Parker following Friday’s Grand Green Pony Hunter title with Baroness of Locheil. With only one class left to conclude the Medium Regular Pony Hunters, the Kentucky Horse Park welcomed 154 entries for the final and largest division of the week. Maintaining their day one lead, Alexa Lignelli and EMC Entourage continued to rally over fences to clinch the division championship ahead of the massive field.

Hallie Rush Races to 2019 Pony Jumper Championship Honors with Sky Miles

Saturday evening saw the pony jumpers return to the Alltech Arena for the third phase of individual competition during USEF Pony Finals. The top 13 riders returned for the finals, all vying for the championship title. Hallie Rush and Sky Miles proved to be the most consistent over the three days of competition, never incurring any faults to impressively finish on a score of zero to earn the title of the 2019 USEF Pony Jumper Individual Champion.

Website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Contact: Rebecca Walton
phone 561.753.3389
rjw@phelpsmediagroup.com

Tosh and Downey Ride to Championship Rosettes in Green Pony Hunters at USEF Pony Finals

Maddie Tosh and Baroness of Locheil.

Lexington, Ky. – Aug. 9, 2019 – Hunter ponies and their riders returned to the Walnut Ring for the second-to-last day of hunter competition Friday at the 2019 USEF Pony Finals, presented by Collecting Gaits Farm. Two more champions were crowned following successful over fences performances, as Maddie Tosh and Baroness of Locheil hoisted the title in the Medium Green Pony Hunters and Tessa Downey and Sandcastle led the victory gallop as the best partnership in the Large Green Pony Hunters. Additionally, Tosh and Baroness of Locheil were awarded the Grand Green Pony Hunter title as the highest-scoring Green pair of all of the size groups.

Hat Trick for Zone 10 at USEF Pony Jumper Team Championship

Down the road from the action in the Walnut Ring, the pony jumpers took center stage in the Alltech Arena to compete for the USEF Pony Jumper Team Championship title. Young athletes and their ponies returned for the second and final round of team competition, and in the end Zone 10, comprised of team members Hannah Attar, Devi Ferreira, and Tabitha Okistsu, topped the podium to take home gold medal honors for the third year in a row.

Website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Contact: Rebecca Walton
phone 561.753.3389
rjw@phelpsmediagroup.com

Maddie Tosh and Bit of Love Reprise Championship Title at 2019 USEF Pony Finals

Maddie Tosh and Bit of Love.

Lexington, Ky. – Aug. 8, 2019 – It was déjà vu for Maddie Tosh and Bit of Love at the 2019 USEF Pony Finals, presented by Collecting Gaits Farm, on Thursday as the talented partnership defended their title in the Small Regular Pony Hunters ahead of a large field of challengers. The 2018 victors once again proved why they belong at the top of the scorecard, riding to the highest score over fences and in the cumulative standings to emerge victorious for the second time. Tosh had double the reasons to celebrate Thursday as she also led teammate Baroness of Locheil to the initial lead in the Medium Green Pony Hunters with two phases of competition completed. In the Large Green Pony Hunters, Tessa Downey and Sandcastle lead the way prior to the final over fences round to determine the division champion.

Returning as the day one leaders and reigning champions, Tosh and Bit of Love had a target on their backs as the pair to beat in the Small Regular Pony Hunters, which featured 127 entries. The 13-year-old Tosh and Dr. Betsee Parker’s 13-year-old Welsh Pony Cross, Bit of Love, concluded the first two phases of the divisional contest ahead of the closest duo by a slim margin of only six points, meaning they still needed to demonstrate a textbook trip over the course to top the pack and secure overall victory. Not giving in to the pressure, the skilled combination performed perfectly as the final contenders to ride, earning scores of 87.50, 89 and 89 for total over fences marks of 265.5, pushing them to the top of the jumping leaderboard and a composite score of 1,063 to clinch the championship for the second year.

Tosh and Bit of Love are no strangers to USEF Pony Finals, both having competed at the event multiple times. With three appearances under her belt, Tosh has already accrued two major divisional victories two years in a row, adding to her growing list of accolades that includes wins in the Children’s Hunters, Junior Hunters, and equitation. Coming from an equestrian family, Tosh is trained by her father, acclaimed rider and trainer Hunt Tosh, out of Alpharetta, Georgia, and has been riding “Chester” for three years.

Website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Contact: Rebecca Walton
phone 561.753.3389
rjw@phelpsmediagroup.com

Samantha Takacs and Annabelle Brown Start Strong at 2019 USEF Pony Finals

Samantha Takacs and Brighton.

Lexington, Ky. – Aug. 6, 2019 – Hundreds of ponies descended upon the Kentucky Horse Park once again for the first day of competition during the annual installment of the 2019 USEF Pony Finals, presented by Collecting Gaits Farm, to mark the event’s 52nd year. The most celebrated event of its kind for pony riders in the United States, the USEF Pony Finals is a three-phase competition judging the pony’s conformation, way of moving, and jumping ability. With blue ribbons in both the model and under saddle phases, Samantha Takacs and Brighton emerged as the early frontrunners ahead of a pack of nearly 150 pairs in the Large Regular Pony Hunters, while Annabelle Brown and Sunshine Kid topped the leaderboard in the Small Green Pony Hunters.

Hailing from Oldwick, New Jersey, Takacs is no stranger to the winner’s circle or the pressure of leading a division head into the over fences portion of competition. In 2018, the now-14-year-old rider modeled and hacked Galianna to the day one lead in the Medium Green Pony Hunters, eventually securing the overall championship following an exemplary over fences performance. Similarly, Ellie Sadrian’s Brighton is a returning champion, boasting two major accolades from the 2018 event. With the highest cumulative score of the six divisions, Brighton reigned supreme with rider Kat Fuqua to capture the Grand Regular Pony Hunter championship title, along with the rosette in the Large Regular Pony Hunters. The partnership will jump last Wednesday as the current leaders with 544.27 total points, comprised of their scores of 266 in the model and 278.27 in the under saddle.

In the Small Green Pony Hunters, Brown nabbed the top spot on the overall scorecard with Sunshine Kid, owned by Alina Glover. Earning 258.55 points in the model, the duo was awarded second place out of a pack of 44 challengers and later returned to the Walnut Ring to with a score of 248.25 and fourteenth place in the under saddle. Sitting on a cumulative tally of 506.80 points, Brown and Sunshine Kid lead the division by just one point ahead of a hotly-contested field and will aim to retain their momentum during Wednesday’s third phase of competition.

Website: www.kentuckyhorseshows.com

Contact: Rebecca Walton
phone 561.753.3389
rjw@phelpsmediagroup.com

Fuqua and Brighton Power to New Heights

Kat Fuqua and Brighton (Photo courtesy of Shawn McMillan)

Lexington, Kentucky (August 31, 2018) – A new gold standard set by a golden pony and his rider: the 2018 USEF Pony Finals presented by Collecting Gaits Farm saw the birth of a new superstar partnership and a new era in Pony Hunter competition. Kat Fuqua and Brighton were a world apart: sweeping their division and leading the field by over 30 points was the beginning; being crowned Overall Grand Pony Hunter Champion for the entire Finals was the bridge. And to clinch their extraordinary effort, having just turned 11 years old, Fuqua may be the youngest and highest scoring USEF Pony Finals Champion in the event’s history.

Fuqua, who came to have the ride on Brighton just a few months ago, went into the USEF Pony Finals aboard the flaxen maned pony with an undefeated record. They were to quickly prove their mettle by sweeping all three classes, a rare achievement, and garnering an impressive 1063.65 points, the highest cumulative score for a USEF Pony Finals competitor. With over 30 points differentiation between Champion and Reserve, Fuqua galloped to Overall Grand Pony Hunter Champion and is one of the youngest, if not the youngest ever, Grand Pony Finals Champions. Her trainer, Michael Newman, was awarded the Emerson Burr Perpetual Trophy, which recognizes the trainer of the Overall Champion at USEF Pony Finals and their contribution to the advancement of youth riders.

“Michael doesn’t put a lot of pressure on me, and even when I’m nervous before a big show like USEF Pony Finals he always finds a way to make me laugh before I go in the arena,” said Fuqua. “It teaches me the importance of being relaxed in the saddle. Brighton is such an easy, happy pony; I think that is what has made us click so well even though I haven’t known him that long.” Channeling this happy attitude instilled by her trainer, Kat’s team, including her mom and a few friends, decided to have a dance off to Earth, Wind, and Fire’s classic “Let’s Groove,” while waiting for her ride. Despite some level of embarrassment, Kat admits that the positive, relaxed atmosphere has contributed to her high scores in the show ring.

With Brighton taking the blue in the 10 & Under Large Pony Hunter, the Owner/Rider Large Pony Hunter, the Large Pony Hunter Championship out of a field of 147 Large ponies, and Grand Pony Champion out of 417 ponies of all sizes, it would be fair to assume that Fuqua’s other ponies may have fallen by the wayside. That was not the case, however, as she piloted her medium gray pony mare, Sasha Fierce, to Reserve Champion Overall in the 10 & Under Medium Green Pony Hunter, 12th in the Model Medium Green Pony Hunter, and 17th Overall in the Medium Green Pony Hunter out of 72 entries. Her Medium pony, Finesse RF, a.k.a. Ladybug, was also well placed: 6th overall in the 10 & Under Medium Pony Hunter, 7th in the Under Saddle Medium Pony Hunter, and 25th in the Overall Medium Pony Hunter out of a field of 167.

Because the USEF Pony Finals restricts riders to only one pony per division, Fuqua passed the ride on her other large pony, Chic in Time, aka Spicey, to her friend and another prominent champion equestrian Caroline Passarelli. Spicey and Passarelli were 2nd in the Under Saddle Large Pony Hunter, 15th in the Model Large Pony Hunter, and 3rd in the Large Pony Hunter Combined Model & Under Saddle.

With the whirlwind of USEF Pony Finals behind her, Fuqua then stepped into the irons of her Junior Hunter, RS Levitation, a.k.a. Jett, to take home the Division Championship at the 2018 Atlanta Summerfest III, held August 16-19, 2018. The Junior Hunter division has been a natural next step for Fuqua as she expands her horizons beyond just ponies, and she states that her success in the show ring comes from the support of her family as well as the advice guidance of trainer Michael Newman.

She and Jett also placed 3rd in the country during July’s USEF National Junior Hunter Championships before setting her sights on USEF Pony Finals and the Atlanta Summerfest. Fuqua’s next outing will be September’s Brownland Fall Horse Show Series in preparation for indoors at Harrisburg and Washington Championship Shows in October.

Fuqua’s USHJA Zone 4 rankings, also as of August 27, 2018, currently sees Finesse RF as the #1 Medium Hunter Pony, Chic in Time as the #1 Large Hunter Pony, RS Levitation as the #1 Junior Hunter Small 15 & Under, and her other Junior Hunter mount, Calvaro, as the #3 Junior Hunter Small 15 & Under.

For more information on Kat Fuqua, visit her website at www.KatFuqua.com.

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Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
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