2nd Annual Carolina Horse Park Benefit Show Receives Rave Reviews From Competing Riders
The second annual Carolina Horse Park Benefit Horse Show held May 14-17 at the Carolina Horse Park in Raeford attracted 175 hunter/jumper competitors.
The jumping divisions were held on the grass ring with spanking brand new jumps and a course designed by Marc Donovan of Aberdeen. The hunter rings accommodated the large number of hunter competitors over courses designed by show manager Andrew Ellis.
The show attracted top professional and amateur riders.
Harold Chopping of Vass, back home after competing on the Florida circuit, was one of the few riders who showed in both the hunter and jumper divisions. Chopping earned the Reserve Championship in the First Year Green Working Hunter division aboard a new horse to the Chopping stable, the seven-year old Hanoverian gelding Nickleback, owned by Barnes Brooks. "This was my first horse show with Nickleback. We're going to Devon next week so I used this show to figure him out. I'm very pleased with how he did," said Chopping.
Chopping also topped the 1.05 meter jumping division aboard Trish Dale's Paniiolo, a 10-year-old Belgian. "Paniiolo always gets a good ribbon. He's very careful," said Chopping. "The horses jumped around the grass course well. The new jumps were beautiful and it was a good course design. I'm always impressed with the facility and it's improving every time out. I love having a horse show so close by. Hopefully, they'll get bigger and bigger." Chopping rode numerous other horses to top ribbons.
Kathy Bennett took the Amateur-Owner 36 and over division Championship for the second year in a row aboard the aptly named Winning My Way. Bennett loaned Simpson Bay to Jane Demeulemester, who came back to the hunter ring after a 24-year hiatus.
Demeulemester won the Pre-Adult Equitation over fences class and also did well in the Pre-Adult Hunter classes. "All the thanks to Kathy for letting me ride and show her lovely horse," said Demeulemester. "Normally I do jumpers where it doesn't matter how you look. I talked to my old trainer and she said 'Jane, just make it smooth.' I decided I would mimic Kathy in the ring. Kathy always makes it look smooth."
Windward, a horse out of the Patty Heuckeroth stable, continued his winning ways with Don Sheehan in the irons. Windward, owned by Mrs. R. Braga, was Champion in the Pre Green 3'3" division. Sheehan also rode another Heuckeroth trained horse, Remedy, to the Regular Second Year Green Working Hunter Championship. Remedy is owned by Margaret Edge.
The Hassinger Stable out of Aberdeen also had a strong showing. Cirobantos was Green Conformation Hunter Champion and Reserve Champion in the Regular Second Year Green Working Hunter Division with owner Dr. Jim Hassinger in the irons. Mary Brantley Hassinger rode Aberdeen to the Baby Green Hunter Championship.
Gabriele Jones' horse, My Time, was Reserve Champion in the Low Hunter division with Dale Wright in the irons.
Kathy Nexton won both Moore County Hunter Over Fences classes with her Granite State.
Diane Tate of Vass rode Starland Farm's Aitschy to win the 1.25-meter jumper class.
"Aitschy is fairly quick and turns well," said Tate. "Unfortunately I didn't win the class I wanted to win -- the $2,500 speed stake. I had a rail down at the skinny. It didn't help any that it was raining and I didn't have calks on." Matthias Hollberg from the Apex Equestrian Center won the $2,500 speed stake aboard Kabir de Cer.
There were numerous other top local finishes. Full results are available at www.horseshows online.com.
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