October 24, 2013--Day two of the 2013 Washington International Horse Show (WIHS) featured the presentation of championship honors in the professional and amateur-owner hunter divisions at Verizon Center in downtown Washington D.C. on Wednesday. Kelley Farmer was named Leading Hunter Rider after earning the overall Grand Hunter Championship with Quotable. Romance won the Grand Green Hunter Championship with Peter Pletcher in the irons, and Becky Gochman and Sambalino and Daryl Portela and Winner each earned Grand Amateur-Owner Hunter Championships. The $10,000 Children's and Adult Jumper Championships and the first $10,000 Open Jumper speed class were featured during the evening session. The show will continue through Sunday, October 27.
Wednesday's competition saw tricolor wins for four of the nation's very best hunter riders from coast to coast with professionals Kelley Farmer (Keswick, VA), Scott Stewart (Wellington, FL), Peter Pletcher (Magnolia, TX), and John French (Woodside, CA) all taking trips to the winner's circle.
In the Green Conformation Hunter championship, Kelley Farmer and Quotable shined with a clean sweep of the model, under saddle, and all three classes over fences. They were awarded The Valiant Hark Memorial Challenge Trophy, donated by Mrs. Stephen J. Clark. Farmer also rode her mount Skorekeeper, owned by D. Larry Glefke and Quail Run Partnerships, to the division's reserve honors. Skorekeeper was second in all three classes over fences and placed third under saddle and fourth in the model.
Following an exceptional two days of competition, Quotable was awarded The Rave Review Challenge Trophy, donated by Stoney Hill, as the overall Grand Hunter Champion, and Farmer earned the Leading Hunter Rider Award, sponsored by Dr. Betsee Parker. For the win, Farmer was presented with The Robert Coluccio Leading Hunter Rider Perpetual Trophy as well as a beautiful Rolex Luxury Timepiece, courtesy of Tiny Jewel Box. In addition to the grand championship, Quotable's owners, D. Larry Glefke and Dr. Kenneth Garber, were presented with the Leading Hunter Owner Award sponsored by The Reid Family. Farmer was WIHS Leading Hunter Rider in 2010 as well and was happy to receive the honor once again with the ride on a fantastic young horse.
"It's very special," she stated. "My horses are the most important thing. It's an honor, and I have to say it was an absolutely beautiful trophy that Betsee got. It's special that it is in Robbie's name. He is a good friend, and I'm honored to have won that."
Quotable, an eight-year-old Warmblood gelding, has been no stranger to the spotlight this year. In fact, this was his third grand hunter championship in a row this month after also taking top honors at the Capital Challenge Horse Show and the PA National Horse Show.
"Every indoors he has just gotten better and better," Farmer stated. "For these kinds of horse shows, especially this one, they have to be quiet horses, not hard to prepare. That played a lot into my decision of which ones we wanted to bring. They have to ride well, they have to be perfect lead changers, they have to brave, and they have to be easy to get to the ring for this horse show. Good horses know when it matters and step up. Good horses know how to win, I believe."
Describing Quotable's style and the special quality that keeps placing him in the winner's circle, Farmer described, "He's so smooth. He's such a beautiful picture and he has such a beautiful canter. It all matches. He walks in the ring and it looks right. You never have to pick up the reins. There's mistakes, he has a rail or something, but in general he tries to win.He knows when you take him in the ring for the conformation; he kind of has this air about him. He knows he's the real deal and he's not wrong!"
In addition to her success with Quotable, Farmer also topped the first championship of the day with her mount Mythical, owned by D. Larry Glefke and Dr. Kenneth Garber, in the High Performance Working Hunters sponsored by The Wasserman Foundation. Farmer and Mythical placed first, second and third over fences and second under saddle to earn The "NOT ALWAYS" Challenge Trophy, donated by Miss Peggy Steinman. The High Performance reserve championship was presented to Dr. Betsee Parker's Everly, ridden by Scott Stewart, with a win under saddle and second, second and third place ribbons over fences.
Mythical and Farmer were also presented with the very special Protocol Trophy, sponsored by Platinum Performance, as the overall High Point High Performance Working Hunter from the Devon Horse Show, Pennsylvania National Horse Show, and Washington International Horse Show.
Farmer has a special connection with Mythical, a nine-year-old Westphalian gelding, and was very happy to receive the significant award. "That, to me, is really special," she smiled. "Rosalynn won that with me a couple years ago, and I think that's really special, especially because it goes over the three horse shows. I love a conformation horse, but in my heart and soul, my favorite is still a real four-foot horse, and especially when my First Year horse won it. I love Quotable, and I love all my horses, but Mythical, he's my horse. He is appropriately named. I think it defines him."
In the Regular Conformation Hunters, Scott Stewart guided Krista & Alexa Weisman's Showman to championship honors and was presented with The Mary Farren Perpetual Trophy. Stewart and Showman placed sixth in both jumping classes on Tuesday and won the stake and under saddle classes on Wednesday to top the division. They also won in the model. Farmer and Quotable finished in reserve, placing second in the model, first and third over fences, and fourth under saddle.
Also competing on Wednesday, the First Year Green Working Hunter division concluded with a championship win for Scott Stewart, this time aboard Fashion Farm's Loyalty. Stewart and Loyalty placed third, second and third over fences and finished second under saddle. Farmer and Skorekeeper earned another reserve tricolor after placing first and second over fences and sixth under saddle.
The Second Year Green Working Hunter championship was presented as well with an exciting win for Peter Pletcher aboard David Gochman's Romance. Pletcher and Romance placed third, third and first over fences and second under saddle. John French and Oscany, Inc.'s Small Celebration finished in reserve with a win under saddle and second, second and fourth place ribbons in the three classes over fences.
The Windy Acres Challenge Trophy was presented earlier in the morning. The trophy, donated by Mr. James O. Pease, is awarded to the overall winner of classes 24 and 34 for the best Green Working Hunter stake round. Pletcher's high score of 87 in the Second Year Green Working Hunter Stake with Romance was best.
After a very successful morning, Pletcher and the nine-year-old gelding, Romance, were honored with The Claire Lang Miller Challenge Trophy as the show's Grand Green Working Hunter Champions. This was Romance's first time competing at WIHS and an exciting victory for owners and rider.