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Famous Hunter GG Valentine Retired at Devon Horse Show

Devon, PA - May 29, 2007 - GG Valentine and rider Jennifer Alfano have been one of the leading hunter combinations in the nation since they made their debut in 2001. In a special ceremony on Monday, GG Valentine was retired at the Devon Horse Show. She was joined by Alfano, owner Barbara Kearney, trainers Susie Schoellkopf and Emil Spadone and Sharon O'Neill.

With SBS Farms of Buffalo, NY, GG Valentine started her career with an unbelievable winning streak in the First Year Green Working Hunters, where she won the championship here at the Devon Horse Show, the Washington International Horse Show and the National Horse Show at Madison Square Garden, and she was named the USEF Horse of the Year in the First Years.

GG Valentine was the winner of the $100,000 National Horse Show Hunter Championship at Madison Square Garden, and Kearney was there to see her incredible horse. When she watched them win, she said, "I had to pinch myself! I knew that my association with those two was truly a blessing, and I was so proud."

Alfano noted that winning at Madison Square Garden was one of the greatest moments. GG won every jumping class that week, and Alfano remembered that every jump in each class was unbelievable. "It was a magical, special night for everybody," she said.

In 2002, GG Valentine was the Second Year Green Working Hunter and Grand Green Working Hunter champion at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show. She repeated success at Harrisburg when she was the Regular Working Hunter champion in 2003 and 2004. The Regular Working Hunter championship came at the Syracuse Invitational Sporthorse Tournament in 2003 and 2004, and she won the Regular Working Handy Hunter class at Devon.

Just last year, GG won the handy hunter class again at the Devon Horse Show and was named the Best Mare in the Hunter Division and was awarded the Bunty Sellers Perpetual Trophy.

She picked up numerous championships throughout her career, including at the HITS Ocala Winter Circuit, Saratoga, St. Christopher's, Atlanta, Chagrin Valley, Saugerties, Kentucky and Buffalo.

A team of people for GG helped make everything happen, including Kearney, Alfano, Schoellkopf, Dr. Steele, DJ Johnson and her grooms, Steve Young and Jake Marriott.

GG Valentine is now in foal, and there are two other surrogate mothers. All the babies are by Popeye K, a fellow famous hunter. She is retired at Stacy Sandboth's farm in Tennessee, where Alfano knows she'll be happy.

Schoellkopf remarked, "GG was so exciting to watch from day one, and that it's been an amazing six years. GG always wanted to win; all you had to do was stay out of her way and less was better. Everyone at SBS Farms knew that they were dealing with a very special athlete, the likes of which we would never train, own or ride again in their lifetime."

Kearney concluded, "I know that most people only dream of having a horse like GG Valentine. I am profoundly grateful."



Photo Credit: GG Valentine takes her final lap around the Devon Horse Show with rider Jennifer Alfano and owner Barbara Kearney. Photo (C) 2007 Randi Muster.

 

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