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Katherine Newman takes home the blue in the 2008 Essex Classics USHJA Hunterdon Cup

SAUGERTIES, NEW YORK (August 6, 2008)-- When Katherine Newman came to HITS-on-the-Hudson she had one thing on her mind. She wanted to win the USHJA Hunterdon Cup.

The Middleburg, Virginia native did just that as she wowed the judges to score the blue ribbon in the popular equitation class that featured 46 starters.

"She wanted to win this class so bad," said Katherine's mother and trainer Kathy Newman.

After the first round, Newman had the roundís highest score. The top 12 were then invited back for a handy round where Newman remained on top. From there, the judges brought the top six equitation riders back for additional testing. In this round, the riders had to swap horses. After the exchange, riders were allowed only two minutes in the schooling ring and were not allowed to receive any guidance from their trainers.

"It's a special class," said Katherine Newman, whose equitation trainer is Jen Alfano. "I loved the unique test. I never switched horses before and was really looking forward to doing that."

In the first two rounds, Newman was in the irons aboard Double Diamond, who is owned by SBS Farms. "He is a fabulous young seven-year-old warmblood that we bought a year ago," said Susie Schoelkopf.

Earlier in the summer circuit at HITS Saugerties, Alfano pointed to Newman as a rider to watch during the Finals and, as it turns out, she was right! Newman now joins Maggie Mcalary and Addison Phillips as winners of the class. The Hunterdon Cup was held during the 2008 East Coast USEF Junior Hunter Finals and was open to any rider who was an active USHJA junior member and has won a USEF Medal, ASPCA Maclay, USEF Show Jumping Talent Search, or WIHS Classic through July 1, 2008.

"It was a fabulous class because we won," said Kathy Newman. "In the last year Katherine has made tremendous strides in the ring. She did her first Grand Prix and went double clear and, as an equitation rider, Katherine and Jen have become quite a team."

"It's such a fun class," said Whitney Allen, Director of Marketing and Communication for USHJA. "Coming to Saugerties is always a great time. It's such a beautiful equestrian facility and showing in the Grand Prix ring gives the class an extra special feel."

The 2008 USEF Junior Hunter Championships East Coast continues today at HITS Saugerties and features the Classic rounds for all four core divisions in the Grand Prix ring, followed by the awards presentations later this afternoon.

Hunter action will continue at HITS Saugerties through the rest of the NY Horse & Pony Show (VI) with the $10,000 ASG Software Solutions USHJA International Hunter Derby and the all new $5,000 Pony Commotion highlighting the week. Both events will take place in the Grand Prix ring on Thursday, August 7.

HITS, Inc. is a special events management company primarily focused on producing hunter/jumper horse shows. Based in upstate New York in the village of Saugerties, HITS produced its first horse show circuit in Gainesville, Florida in 1982. Since that time, HITS has grown into a nationwide company with world-class hunter/jumper circuits in California, Florida, Arizona, New York and Virginia.

For more information and a complete schedule of classes and events, visit http://www.HitsShows.com

PHOTO: © Lili Weik Photography; Katherine Newman and mount Double Diamond beat out 45 other starters to take the title in the 2008 Essex Classics USHJA Hunterdon Cup at HITS Saugerties.


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