May 17, 2008 – Lexington, KY – Amelia McArdle was giddy after winning the Non Pro 3’6” Finals on MVP at the Legacy Cup. She won the Overall and Junior Finals as well as the Leading Non Pro 3’6” Rider honors. Lavari ridden by Tracy Scheriff won the Non Pro 3’6” Amateur Finals and Leading Amateur Rider award. Havens Schatt won the Leading Trainer Award after she and her students totaled $10,424. This was the final day of the two-week Legacy Cup which was part of the Kentucky Spring Horse Shows in Lexington, KY.
As the Leading Non Pro Junior Rider, based on money won from Non Pro 3’6” division, McArdle was presented with the Signature Trophy in honor of Weatherly Stroh’s Large Junior Working Hunter who dominated that division in the Midwest from 1987-1991. Scheriff received the Jeannie Geiger Memorial Trophy for her Leading Amateur Rider honors.
The top 25 riders qualified from a field of 40 to compete in the Finals by first riding in the Non Pro 3’6” Go Round. That Non Pro 3’6” Go Round Overall and Junior class was won by On The Rox ridden by Ande Farish and owned by Lanes End. Winner of the Non Pro 3’6” Amateur Go Round was Cruise, ridden by Lindsay Fishell, owned by Royce Fishell and Lindsey Sey. The purse for the Non Pro 3’6” division totaled $12,000, with $10,500 earmarked for the Finals. The winning horse received $3,520.
The Legacy Cup is unique in that it focuses on being different than the other typical hunter classes. Riders receive more money and prizes thanks to an add-back format and the support of sponsors. Golden Point Farm, LLC sponsored the Non Pro 3’6 Finals. Gifts to the horses and riders were thanks to Essex Classics and Malvern Saddlery. Other sponsors include the Lindner Family for the Perpetual Trophy in their name, Susanne and Weatherly Stroh for the Signature Trophy & cooler and EMO Insurance for the ribbons and Goshen Hill Foundation for a $100 cash prize to the each of the grooms of the top three horses in each class.
McARDLE AND MVP REALLY WERE THE MOST VALUABLE PLAYERS
Amelia McArdle went early in the Non Pro 3’6” Finals and while her combined score of 253 from the three groups of paired judges was certainly good she waited cautiously to see if someone else would take away her lead. In the end McArdle and her 10-year-old, 15.3H, chestnut, Belgian Warmblood gelding MVP proved to be the most valuable players in both the Non Pro 3’6” Finals and in the Junior division.
Since the class was run in reverse order, McArdle knew that there were lots of talented players behind her. “I didn’t know if I would hold my lead to the end,” she admitted. “It was exciting and I’m very happy to win this class.”
McArdle felt the course was good. “The lines were more like a Stake class that you would find at a big show. They were set forward.”
The horse that she’s been riding for three years now liked this forward open course. “He was great. He is everything you could ask for. He is scopey with a big stride and fun to ride. It’s nice knowing I can go into any ring and that he has the stride and scope to do whatever I ask. He’s a small horse with a big stride.”
MVP, whose alias is “Hunter,” “because he is a hunter,” said McArdle, has his typical horsey quirks “and he definitely loves to eat. He is a little bit of a fatty and loves his treats. He’s such a good boy that he gets a lot of attention. We spoil him.”
McArdle got her love of riding from her dad who also rode as a kid. That passion for horses was helped along by the stable across the street from where she lives. “That’s where I still ride now. I’d always wanted to ride and when I was eight my parents let me take lessons.”
McArdle plans to continue her riding and especially enjoyed the Legacy Cup. “It’s a fun competition. There aren’t that many fun hunter classes out there except for the indoors. They make a big deal out of this event and they offer good prize money.”
SCHERIFF AND LAVARI WIN DESPITE PAST ODDS
If you speak to Tracy Scheriff you get the sense that life without horses wouldn’t be a life at all, despite the fact that she’s been sidelined a few times.
In 2007 Scheriff broke her leg. She was in Wellington at the time. “We were cantering and he tripped. I went to land on my feet but my foot was caught in the stirrup. It was a freak accident.” Scheriff broke her leg in five places from the knee down. “I was out for nine months and on crutches for three months.”
Yet when it was time to get back on a horse there was “No hesitation.” That wouldn’t seem so strange if it were the only mishap in her life but when she was 16, “I was showing in the Junior Hunters and my horse crashed at a jump. I think the pole hit my forehead. I got up and saw blood and then fell to the ground. My first thought was to catch my horse.”
It turned out that Scheriff had crushed her forehead and broke her nose but that time she was only out for three months. “I was very lucky and I have plates and screws in my head.”
Yet that was then and this is now. Scheriff and her 12-year-old, 16.2H, bay, Holsteiner gelding Lavari bested the field of Non Pro 3’6” Amateurs to take home the championship ribbon. Scheriff, 24, who lives in Ramsey, NJ couldn’t say enough good things about Lavari.
“He is amazing. He is always perfect. He goes out there and is consistently the same. He wants to be a good boy and he wants to win.”
Scheriff was hoping to have a good round in preparation for her next event, the Devon Horse Show. “It was a nice course and rode well,” she commented.
Part of the reason it was a success is that Scheriff knows that her main focus is to stay relaxed. “I probably think of everything that can go wrong and then I try to make sure I fix it,” she explained. “Tonight he felt awesome. Everything went perfect.”
While Lavari “lets you know if he has had enough, he also loves attention and his treats.” Not only does he love carrots and peppermints but he’s happy to have a banana in the mix. When riding her gelding, Scheriff has to be very light. “He is extremely soft. You just touch his mouth and he waits for you. Sometimes he can be a little cranky and he will suck back but for the most part he is very rideable and always tries to help you out.
Scheriff intends to “ride for as long as I can.” She recently graduated from Quinnipiac in Connecticul with a degree in Criminal Justice. “My dream is to ride horses for the rest of my life.”
Even though she finds her major to provide many options for a job Scheriff has decided that “for now I am sticking to the horses.”
ABOUT THE LEGACY CUP
The two-week Legacy Cup is the brainchild of the American Hunter-Jumper Foundation, Inc. (AHJF). It includes two professional and two non-pro divisions; one at 3' and one at 3'6". In addition the format allows for multiple awards within each class and division. The Non Pro Juniors and Amateurs also received separate ribbons. Each division has a Go Round and Finals.
Each Go Round offers a guaranteed purse of $1,500. Go Rounds rank the top 25 horses for a clean slate Final. The entry fee is $400 of which 50% goes directly to the division purse and 50% to the AHJF for the expenses associated with the event. In addition the Legacy Cup Committee committed an added purse of $13,000.
For more information about the Legacy Cup and complete results and photos visit http://www.legacycup.com
or contact the AHJF (335 Lancaster Street, West Boylston, MA 01583-0369), Phone: 508-835-8813, http://www.ahjf.com
, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Signature Trophy / Leading Non Pro Rider/ Leading 3’6Junior rider
Amelia McArdle & MVP, $3,520
Jeannie Geiger/Leading 3’6 Amateur Rider
Tracy Scheriff, $1,095
Non Pro Overall Leading Rider
Emily Wygod, $4,078
Glass Castle, owned by Shaw Johnson Price, ridden by Havens Schatt, 262
Leading Trainer Award
Havens Schatt, $10,424
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<a href="http://www.equestrianmag.com/article/mvp-non-pro-finals-legacy-cup-05-08.html">It's MVP Night in the Non Pro 3’6” Finals at the Legacy Cup</a> ~ EquestrianMag.com