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Penelope Ayers Victorious in Amateur-Owner Hunter Championship with Player

Tampa, FL - March 28, 2009 - The second week of competition at the 2009 Tampa Equestrian Festival continued today with the Tampa Bay Classic's fourth day of competition. The Tampa Equestrian Festival is being held at the Bob Thomas Equestrian Center at the Florida State Fairgrounds and will run through Saturday, April 4.

The Amateur-Owner Hunters concluded their second day of competition this afternoon and presented championship awards to the division's top finishers. Player and Penelope Ayers placed first and second in today's classes over fences and were second and sixth yesterday to take the championship win. Templeton and Darby Toben won the reserve championship honors after placing second today and first, third and sixth yesterday.

Penelope Ayers has owned nine year-old Player since last April. Ayers is from Burnettsville, NJ, and trains with Sandy Lobel, who she has been riding with for nearly 25 years.

"He has been an amazing ride for me," Ayers said of Player after her win. "My trainer Sandy has always found me fabulous horses. He is really easy; he has a lot of scope and a huge step. He is also very forgiving, so he is a wonderful amateur horse and he has a great sense of humor. He just likes you to stay off his mouth and let him do his job."

Ayers has shown in Tampa many times and really enjoys showing here. "I love this show; it is one of my very favorite horse shows," she smiled. "I love the ring and I am staying at the Hard Rock Hotel, which I love. I have had a lot of good luck here; I have been very fortunate and done very well."

The Tampa Equestrian Festival's second week of competition, the Tampa Bay Classic, will run through Sunday, March 29. The week will feature much more exciting hunter and jumper competition including the highly anticipated $75,000 FEI World Cup Qualifier CSI-W Grand Prix of Tampa, which will be the grand finale of week two on Sunday afternoon.

For more information please visit http://www.stadiumjumping.com.

Photo Credit: Penelope Ayers rode her horse Player to the championship win during week two of the Amateur-Owner Hunter division at the 2009 Tampa Equestrian Festival. Photo 2009 Lauren Fisher. This photo may be used free of charge only in relation to this press release.


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