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Marianne Cochran and Clever Z Named Horse Shows by the Bay Adult Hunter Grand Champions

Traverse City, MI - July 27, 2008 - Another perfect day in Traverse City, MI set the scene for the final events of Series II at Horse Shows by the Bay today. Another successful week of equestrian competition came to a close in ring 3 with the Adult Hunter championships. Running from July 16-August 3, the horse show held at the beautiful Flintfields Horse Park has just one week of competition left to go.

The Adult Amateur Hunters competed in ring 3 today in the 18-35, 36-50 and 50 and up age groups. Each division competed yesterday as well as today for the overall championship honors. The first division championship of the day went to Marianne Cochran and Clever Z in the Adult Amateur Hunters 36-50 years old.

Cochran, who trains with Peter Pletcher, has been riding since she was a child and did the juniors and young amateur divisions for a long time, but quit riding to finish college. After a 12-year hiatus, Cochran moved to Colorado where she got married and started riding again about eight years ago. She has been training with Pletcher for about five years now.

The horse, 5-year-old Clever Z, is relatively new to Cochran; she just bought the young horse in January. "He is young and just getting started, but he has been doing great," she said. "He has been so good."

Cochran and Clever Z were not only champions of the Adult Amateur Hunter 36-50 year-old division, but they also came away with enough points to be awarded with Adult Hunter Grand Champion as well. The Grand Hunter Champions at Horse Shows by the Bay are honored thanks to the generous sponsorship of Mr. And Mrs. Forrest Shook of Fenton, MI. Series II champions receive their championship coolers courtesy of Custom Fox Tack Shop of Temperance, MI and their generous sponsorship.

Following Cochran and Clever Z in the Adult Hunter 36-50 division, coming in just two points behind them, was Beth A. Bidgood and her horse Northern Crown. Bidgood, who trains with last night's Hunter Derby winner Tammy Provost, was thrilled about winning reserve champion in the division and how well her horse performed.

Next up for the day's competition was the Adult Amateur Hunters 50 years old and over, sponsored by Camping World and Ila Lemonis of Lake Forest, IL. Taking the top honors in this division was rider Stephen Martines and his horse, Bitelli. Martines, of Wellington, FL trains with Lynn Jayne and has been riding for 25 years.

The horse Martines won on, Bitelli, was bought in Florida last fall, so he is relatively new to the rider. "He has blossomed so much since I got him and he is just incredible," Martines said. "Everybody who sees him who knew him from before cannot believe that he is the same horse."

Martines is also the owner of Peridot, the horse that won the Hunter Derby last night with Tammy Provost aboard. "That was the most exciting thing that ever happened," Martines exclaimed about the win.

Reserve champion of the Adult Amateur Hunters 50 years and over was Mary L. Hepler and her horse Engaged. The pair, who trains with Heather Irvine, had a successful two days of competition and managed to come in just behind Martines in points.

The final Adult Amateur Hunter division of the day was for the 18-35 year olds and it was rider Tracy Scheriff who won it with the handsome gray horse Absolut. R. Bruce Duchossois of Aiken, SC sponsored the division.

Scheriff, who trains with Havens Schatt, is 25 years old, from Ramsey, NJ. The horse, Absolut, is just 6 years old. "He is a baby, but he is lots of fun," Scheriff said of the horse. "He just has a great mind and he always goes in there and is willing to do whatever you want. He does not ever want to let you down; he is just smart."

Reserve champion of the 18-35 year old division of Adult Amateur Hunters went to Francesca Senior and her horse The Park After Dark. Senior, who trains with Peter Pletcher, was also the winner of the $1,000 Horse Shows by the Bay Adult Hunter Classic with her other horse, The Red Villain. Fresard Pontiac Buick GMC of Ferndale, MI sponsored that class.

That wraps up week two here at Horse Shows by the Bay in beautiful Traverse City, MI. There will be much more fun and excitement next week with another full schedule of equestrian competition set to take place. Be sure to check back in for what is sure to be another great week at Flintfields Horse Park. For more information on Horse Shows by the Bay, please go to http://www.horsesportsbythebay.com.

Photo Credit: Marianne Cochran and Clever Z: Horse Shows by the Bay Series II Adult Hunter Grand Champions. Photo (C) 2008 Randi Muster. This photo may be used free of charge only in relation to this press release.


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