From California to Argentina the West is Tops!
Burbank, CA. With keen competition going on in Los Angeles at the Los Angeles National (Nov. 12-16), half a hemisphere away a young squad of riders representing the United States won the Nations Cup (CSIO) Buenos Aires (Nov. 13) in Argentina. For the four riders they sporting their red, team coats for the first time and they got the added honor of hearing the Star Spangled Banner in salute of their victor. Three of the four riders, Ashlee Bond (CA), Rebecca Johanson-Hoffman (AZ), and Kirsten Coe (CA) are all from the West Coast. Coe has spent the last several years working for Andre Dignelli’s Heritage Farm and traveling to all the major shows in the east. Michelle Spadone, wife of professional Emil Spadone hails from New Jersey and was the sole East Coast rider on the team. Regardless of the different coasts, the four women came together and proved a winning forc e.
Chef d’Equipe George Morris was thrilled with his team’s performance. In the first round, Bond, Coe, and Johansen-Hoffman all posted just four faults apiece. Spadone rode a flawless course. In the second round, Bond led off with a fault free round, and Johanson-Hoffman and Spadone both joined her. The U.S. had such a commanding lead that Coe did not have to ride in the second round and was able to save her horse for the grand prix on Sunday. For complete information on the event and results, visit: http://www.haraselcapricho.com/home_en.php
The Los Angeles National regularly attracts the best of the best, and is the final, major show on the West Coast. In the $25,000 Welcome Stake Mandy Porter and San Diego (Danielle Korsh, owner) topped the 46 horse field. First to go in the seven horse jump off, they set the time and no one could beat them. Porter found the course open and not tight. "It was a good course to get horses going forward and built confidence," she said. "The course was fairly straightforward. In the line across the middle, you could step up and do a five and a four or hold and do the six and the five. I’m trying to get to know this horse better so I decided to do the add." She’s only been riding the horse since the beginning of September when his owner, Junior Jumper rider Danielle Korsh, went to college at Berkeley. "He was a Junior Jumper and is inexperienced at this level," she said. "He’s my only World Cup candidate." Unfortunately Porter’s regular star, Summer, is sidelined, and Porter is grateful to the Korsh family for giving her the ride on San Diego.
Rich Fellers was second on Kilkenny Rindo (Kilkenny Crest, owners) and Jill Humphrey rounded out the top three aboard Kaskaya (Leone Equestrians, Inc.). Complete results are at: http://www.langershows.com/laec_show_details.php?show_id=89
Fifty-nine Pre-Green horses vied for the chance to jump for $5,000 in the Pre-Green Hunter Championship. Only the top twenty, based on the champion chart, were eligible for the $5,000 class. Unspoken, the eventual winner, did not place the first day of showing, but the second day John Bragg piloted the horse for Oceanfront Equestrian to two blue ribbons. Bragg earned second place honors aboard Whiskey Hill (Stephanie Ray, owner), while John French snuck into third with Above The Fray (Sarah Sellin-Eiler, owner). Bragg took the fourth spot with Teddy (Patricia Applegate, owner), and French took fifth with his own Chino. Hope Glynn finally broke the John and John limelight by earning sixth with Valentine (Ira McEvoy,owner).
The WCE Junior/ Amateur Medal Finals is a tough equitation contest run over jumper courses, and Navona Gallegos (Karen Healey, trainer) carried the day. The final round consists of a jump-off course with a demanding time allowed. Gallegos rode a beautiful and efficient track to earn a final score of 88 and take the win. Hannah Selleck (Karen Healey, trainer) finished second to Gallegos and was honored as the high scoring amateur rider.
Friday night at the Los Angeles National was capped by the West Coast Active Riders Dinner and Dance. The goal of the evening was to honor top jumper equestrians from the West Coast, from Olympic gold medalist Will Simpson to USEF Pony Finals Jumper Champion Jessica Pyfer, and numerous show jumping stars in between. In fact, Simpson even let Pyfer try on his Olympic medal.
Rich Fellers was honored for his World Cup Finals success, and Richard Spooner was honored for his stellar performances at international competitions throughout the year. Many notables were on hand, including Bill Moroney, President of the USHJA, Kathy Meyer of the USEF, Sally Ike (USEF), and Bonnie Jenkins of the USET Foundation. For more information on WCAR and its programs, visit: http://www.westcoastactiveriders.com/
The Los Angeles National still has plenty of competition to conclude, including the $50,000 Los Angeles National Grand Prix. LEG Up News will send out complete coverage of the LA National, and results are available at: http://www.langershows.com
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<a href="http://www.equestrianmag.com/article/los-angeles-us-team-argentina-11-08.html">Los Angeles National & U.S. Team in Argentina</a> ~ EquestrianMag.com