EMO, the leaders in equine insurance, has returned to sponsor the award-winning Classic Company and Gulf Coast Classic 2017 show jumping events!
EMO is the title sponsor of the upcoming $10,000 EMO Jumper Classic Week I, which takes place on Saturday night, January 16 at the Gulf Coast Winter Classic Pensacola Circuit. The Circuit kicks off January 13 at the Escambia County Equestrian Center in Pensacola, Florida, for three weeks of top show jumping and hunter competition.
EMO will also be the presenting sponsor of the Atlanta Spring Classic's Week I $35,000 Grand Prix on March 25, 2017, the Atlanta Summer Classic's Week II Grand Prix June 24th, as well as the presenting sponsor of the Atlanta Fall Classic's Week I Grand Prix on November 11.
"We continue to support the Classic shows because they run quality events and take care of their exhibitors. EMO supports that kind of partnership and is proud to sponsor their award-winning shows," said Sue Bopp, EMO Corporate Operations Officer.
Founded by horsemen for horsemen, EMO has been an integral part of the equine industry for 33 years. Their top three leading producers, in fact, are top competitors and work in all facets of the industry: Mike Moran, Sue Bopp and Martha Hall. EMO offers more than 15 insurance products and is currently in 47 states throughout the United States.
"We are very thankful for EMO's continued support of the Classic Company shows," commented Bob Bell, president of Classic Company. "Their agents are directly involved in the horse industry and are well respected by farm and horse owners," he said. "Their customer service and product knowledge are second to none, and we are proud to have them on board."
EMO believes that your horse is a valuable asset and considerable financial investment. Protecting that investment with equine insurance has been EMO's specialty for more than 33 years.
They have earned a reputation for providing horse owners with the highest quality of coverage, best customer service and quick claim settlement. That's why so many horse owners, trainers and farm managers nationwide trust their insurance needs to EMO.
ABOUT THE CLASSIC COMPANY
The Classic Company's philosophy is to offer an event for every level of rider and horse. From Lead Line to Olympic-level Grand Prix competition, from seasoned veteran horse-and-rider team to a first-time horse show experience, the Classic Company offers competition that provides the competitor substantial prize money, award-winning facilities and courses, quality competition and the best customer service in the industry.
Service is what sets the Classic Company apart from other horse show companies. Consistently awarded the USHJA's Member Choice Award for providing excellent customer-friendly competitions, the Classic Company provides champion service from in-gates to show office at all its venues.
Top competition with an emphasis on southern hospitality is their hallmark and the reason thousands prefer to compete at Classic Company-produced events each year.
For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
For sponsorship and press inquiries, contact Lisa Engel.
For program advertising opportunities, contact Drew Costa.
Phone/Fax: (843) 768-5503
Post Office Box 1311, Johns Island, SC 29457
Press Release courtesy of the Classic Company
The EMO Agency, Inc., is a proud sponsor of the Super Series Group and congratulates all of the winners from the Pin Oak Charity and Spring Gathering Horse Shows in Texas!
Special congratulations to EMO client SBS Farms, Inc., and Jennifer Alfano for their exceptional performances!
Congratulations to the Pin Oak
EMO Trip of the Day Winners!
The EMO Agency, Inc., congratulates the EMO Trip of the Show Award winners during the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show II, March 29-April 3 at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in Katy, Texas. The following horse/rider combinations earned the highest hunter score of the day in the USEF-rated hunter sections held during this United States Hunter Jumper Association/World Championship Hunter Rider competition.
Tuesday - The Exchange and Jennifer Alfano
Wednesday - Bowie and Courtney Calcagnini
Thursday - The Exchange and Jennifer Alfano
Friday - Q and Susie Baker
Saturday - Hidden Creek's Sinnamon and Clare Hines
Sunday - Quirrell and Tabitha Brown
The 71st Pin Oak Charity Horse Show II, presented by Irish Day Farm, closed out two weeks of action-packed competition after Hunters, Jumpers, American Saddlebreds, Andalusians and Lusitanos showed off their talents from March 22-April 3. More than 1,000 horses competed at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in Katy, Texas, providing great sport, entertainment and fund-raising opportunities galore.
It was an honor and a privilege for Pin Oak to host Victoria "Tori" Watson, the Week II Texas Children's Hospital Honored Hero, and her family on Saturday night. Thanks to all who made it such a special evening, including Wells Fargo Private Bank for the amazing Wells Fargo Stage Coach ride around the arena before the grand prix started.
Congratulations to Meagan Nusz and Willow for winning the show’s featured jumper class, the $30,000 Walter Oil & Gas Grand Prix. It was one of the best jump-offs in recent memory, and it was great that a hometown girl returned to her roots, reunited with a horse she hadn't competed in two years to win their first-ever grand prix victory together at Pin Oak.
“I’m thrilled. It’s a nice ending to the story,” she said with a smile. “My best friend, Megan Haag, and I have been coming here since were tiny, and it’s literally taken me 28 years to win a Pin Oak Grand Prix. So, I told (show president) Lynn Walsh tonight, ‘Finally! I finally did it!’ So, I came back home after five years, and it was successful, and I’m ecstatic.”
"We want to thank all of our sponsors for making the show a success. We could not do it without them, especially our presenting sponsor, Irish Day Farm, who has stepped up in a significant way four years in a row, " said Lynn Walsh, president of the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show.
Walsh continued, "What a great array of exhibitors this year, too! We appreciate and thank all who travelled from near and far to show with Pin Oak for our 71st year. It was so nice to see our old friends and welcome new ones into the Pin Oak family."
To see a full list of the 2016 Pin Oak Sponsors, click here. We invite you to patronize their businesses as a thank you for supporting our show and the charities we benefit!
Alfano Dominates the USHJA Derbies
The New York-based rider guides Miss Lucy and The Exchange to top honors
It was all Jennifer Alfano in this week's USHJA Hunter Derby competitions. Alfano captured the $30,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, presented by Valobra Master Jewelers, with Miss Lucy on Friday evening a day after winning the $15,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby aboard The Exchange.
This was Miss Lucy's second consecutive victory in the class after returning to action after a two-year hiatus from the show ring due to illness and injury.
“It’s unbelievable. There are really no words,” said Alfano of the 14-year-old Dutch Warmblood owned by Helen Lenahan. “She was just amazing in both rounds. She just jumped higher and higher. She feels as good as ever right now and better than ever. I’m lucky to have her, and a horse like her is a once-in-a-lifetime. She’s such a special animal.”
Loretta Paterson’s Triompf, ridden by Holly Shepherd, impressed the judges in both rounds to place second overall after claiming second in the Classic Round behind Alfano and Miss Lucy. What was perhaps most impressive about Triompf’s performance, however, was the fact that he’d just placed third in the previous evening’s $25,000 Pin Oak Charity Horse Show Grand Prix in the same arena.
Kelley Farmer and Kensel LLC's Mindful claimed third-placed honors after a stellar performance in the Handy Round. Farmer also eanrned the USHJA International Derby High-Point Bonus Award after claiming victory with Mindful in Week I's USHJA International Hunter Derby, presented by Max Bowl and the Tribble Family.
The $15,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby was a fabulous class under beautiful blue skies, and spectators also enjoyed the special Derby Day ringside reception in the Valobra Pavilion, where they could watch the beautiful hunters while enjoying a scrumptious brunch.
Despite the summer-like temperatures, The Exchange, an 8-year-old Dutch Warmblood owned by SBS Farms, jumped better and better through the two-round competition for the victory over Suits You, owned by Ashley Kyle and ridden by Peter Pletcher. Alfano also claimed third aboard her own Candid for an impressive payday of $6,450.
By virtue of their one-two finishes each of the two weeks of Pin Oak, Alfano and Pletcher tied for the USHJA National Hunter Derby High-Point Bonus Award, which included a check for $1,500 and a new bridle.
“It’s really special to win here because I bought The Exchange from Sherre Sims here last year,” said Alfano of the Rendezvous Farm trainer and long-time Pin Oak supporter who passed away last year. “It’s nice for him to win here, and it’s sort of his hometown. It really means a lot.”
Pletcher, of PJP Farm in Magnolia, Texas, also received multiple honors in the hunters over the two weeks, with his Pre-Green stars shining brightly.
Sequence, owned by Natalie Bass, won the Texas Pre-Green Super Stake and the USHJA Pre-Green Incentive Stake for a great day’s payout during Week I and was the 3'3" Pre-Green Hunter Champion.
Sequence won $1,268 for victory in the Texas Super Stake and $2,364 in the USHJA Pre-Green Incentive.
Pletcher repeated the accolades during Week II, riding Sandrino, pictured above, to the Low Pre-Green Hunter championship and to victory in the USHJA Pre-Green Incentive Stake and the Texas Pre-Green Super Stake. Sandrino took home $3,567 along with his two blue-ribbon neck sashes for his stellar performance.
Pletcher owns the 9-year-old Zangersheide gelding (Sandro Boy—Cool Pearl Z) with Sue Lightner, of Modesto, California.
“I did him in the Pre-Greens last year, and he was great,” said Pletcher. “I planned to move him into the First Years this year, but when I broke my arm (in Florida) this winter I decided to keep all of the Pre-Green horses where they were because it was so late in the year to start. And, with the USHJA Pre-Green Incentive Program, it makes me think a lot about keeping those Pre-Green horses in there as long as you can for the amount of money that you can win. So, that was my brainstorm, and so far it’s working pretty well!”
Earlier in the week in the Irish Day Farm Main Arena, Houston native Meagan Nusz returned for this year’s Pin Oak Charity Horse Show after a five-year absence, and it turned into an even sweeter welcome home when she topped the $10,000 Pin Oak Welcome Stake presented by the Kathy and Brad Coors Family on Wednesday, March 30.
On April 1, In the $25,000 Pin Oak Charity Grand Prix II, in memory of Brian Bradley, M.D., Lochinvar and Matt Cyphert jumped to the blue ribbon for the second consecutive week.
With victories both weeks, Cyphert won the inaugural Brian Bradley, M.D. Memorial Trophy for the high-point horse and rider of the Brian Bradley, M.D. Grand Prix Series.
“What a great honor. This is the first year they’re presenting the award, and I know the family to some degree, so to be able to be the first winner means a lot," he said. "And to keep it in Texas, that feels great.”
Cyphert of Woodhill Farm in Northlake, Texas, pictured below, has been a long-time supporter of Pin Oak and was thrilled to add yet another accolade to his tack room, already filled with coolers, neck sashes and dozens of blue and tricolor ribbons from the hunter and jumper sections.
“Obviously, we’re really enjoying Pin Oak,” he said with a smile. “They make such an effort to get a crowd out here, to give lots of prize money away and create something special. The ladies and gentlemen who put this show on need to be congratulated for their efforts, because I know it’s a year-round endeavor and it pays off every year. It’s the best horse show in Texas.”
Under 25 Grand Prix Series Draws Rave Reviews
New this year to Pin Oak were the Under 25 Grand Prix classes, which included a Welcome and Grand Prix. Both events were well received and competitive, for riders ages 16-25.
Keely McIntosh, of Magnolia, Texas, may have had the desire to win the $20,000 Booth Show Jumpers Under 25 Grand Prix because her mother, Jenny Booth, sponsored the class. But, in the end, it all came down to the riding.
McIntosh guided So Live Helau, pictured left, to the only double-clear performance to clinch the blue ribbon over second-placed Katie Cox aboard Twilight.
For McIntosh, a graduating senior at Texas A&M, the class victory was especially sweet as she fully appreciates the opportunity to compete against her peers while also balancing college.
“So, the under 25 division I personally find very important because it gives everyone who is not a top professional the opportunity to jump a height that’s similar,” she said. “But it separates us and gives us a chance to compete at that level without competing against people like McLain Ward and Beezie Madden at WEF or Matt Cyphert and Holly Shepherd here, who are seasoned grand prix riders.”
The 71st Pin Oak Charity Horse Show I, presented by Irish Day Farm, closed out on March 26, after Hunters, Jumpers, American Saddlebreds, Andalusians and Lusitanos showed off their talents from March 22-26. More than 1,000 horses competed at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in Katy, Texas, providing great sport, entertainment and fund-raising opportunities galore.
It was an honor and a privilege for Pin Oak to host Rhett Wilkins, the Week 1 Texas Children's Hospital Honored Hero, and his family, parents Garrett and Sylvia, with brothers Zachary, Joshua and Caleb on Saturday night. Thanks to all who made it such a special evening, including West Point Lincoln for the convertible ride around the arena for Rhett.
Congratulations to Natascha Gates and Quickie for winning the show’s grand finale $30,000 Hildebrand Fund Grand Prix. It was wonderful that Gates and the Oldenburg she’s owned since he was a 3-week-old foal could experience their first-ever grand prix victory together at Pin Oak.
Gates, the head trainer at Plum Creek Hollow Farm in Larkspur, Colorado, is originally from Germany. She moved to the United States eight years ago and has brought the 10-year-old up the levels herself.
"No one else has shown him or really ridden him," she said. "I broke him to saddle myself. We did everything together, and he’s my first grand prix horse."
When asked what the victory in the $30,000 Hildebrand Fund Grand Prix meant to her, she said, "Everything. I'm very emotional and just want to cry. I think he was wonderful. He just did everything for me - he won this class; it wasn’t me."
Hunters and Jumpers Shine During Week I
Derby Day Excitement
Over in the Hunter rings, Kensel LLC’s Mindful and Kelley Farmer took the blue-ribbon honors in the featured $30,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, presented by Max Bowl Centers and the Tribble Family.
Farmer, the top rider in the USHJA International Hunter Derby series for lifetime money earned, also placed second aboard Jane Gaston’s Baltimore, while Peter Pletcher guided Audry Giles-Gates’ Quirino to third. It was a fabulous class under beautiful blue skies, and spectators also enjoyed the special Derby Day ringside reception in the Valobra Pavilion, where they could watch the beautiful hunters while enjoying a scrumptious brunch.
The Kenada Foxhounds $15,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby began the Derby Day festivities, and it was Pletcher who led the victory gallop aboard Ashley Kyle’s Suits You. Jennifer Alfano rode SBS Farms’ The Exchange to second place, with Lorin Marie Howard riding her own Quite Cool to third place. A special thanks to the Strunk Family and Kenada Foxhounds for their sponsorship of this class to benefit the charities of Pin Oak.
Pletcher, of PJP Farm in Magnolia, Texas, also received multiple honors in the week’s hunter sections. Riding CR Beethoven, owned by Kirby McCool, he earned the championship in the High Performance Hunters, with Chique SM, owned by Spruce Meadows/Linda Heathcott, taking the reserve championship in the Conformation Hunters.
Sequence, owned by Natalie Bass, won the Texas Pre-Green Super Stake and the USHJA Pre-Green Incentive class for a great day’s payout and was the 3'3" Pre-Green Hunter Champion. XOXO, owned by Forest Hill Farm, was reserve champion in the 3'3" Pre-Green Hunters. Zafira, owned by Nanette Hebert, was champion in the 3'3" Performance Hunters, while Sutherland, owned by Mia Holstead, and Luck, owned by Johnnie Martin-Carey, both took reserve champion honors in the 3'3" Performance Hunters (California split).
Safeguarding your tack and equipment is an important way to prevent thefts and costly losses.
While there will still be thieves who find a way to crack even the most dedicated theft-prevention systems, most thieves prefer to be in-and-out quickly and seek out the most vulnerable facilities.
Here are 10 tips to help keep your tack and equipment safely in your possession!
- Lock your tack room--install a sturdy deadbolt and make sure to lock the door every night. Be sure any tack room windows are locked and secure.
- Install an alarm--alarms have been shown to be an effective deterrent in tack theft.
- Install motion-sensor lights above all barn doors and entrances--such lights often deter thieves before they even step foot in the barn.
- Change the gate code often--if your property has an electronic gate, make sure to change the code regularly.
- Use a locking saddle rack--thieves work quickly, and if your saddle is locked to the rack/wall, it will be more difficult for it to be easily taken.
- Lock your tack trunk--an open tack trunk can quickly be ransacked, so a lock might deter a quick grab-and-go theft.
- Don't leave tack unattended--saddles are easily and quickly stolen if left next to the ring or beside a trailer at a horse show. Make sure to monitor saddles and other expensive tack at the ring and place inside a locked tack room or vehicle if you must leave it.
- Lock your horse trailer--if you store tack and equipment in your trailer, make sure to have locks on all doors and use them.
- Use a safe--if you store expensive medications, equine passports or other valuable paperwork in the barn, purchase a safe and place it in a closet or other less obvious location.
- Post "No Trespassing" signs on your property--signage shows that you're serious about unauthorized persons on your property and could deter a thief from even driving in.
Week 1 at the Gulf Coast Winter Classic Pensacola Circuit
Lauren Hester, of Lexington, Kentucky, and Hester Equestrian's Wender galloped off with the blue ribbon after posting a first round time of 68.96 seconds and a clean second round in a time of 40.50 well within the 48 seconds time allowed.
Hester competed five horses, all owned by Hester Equestrian, LLC. "I missed watching all the other horses go because I was jumping off and on all of mine," said Hester. "I have three people helping me here, and I'm thankful that we're stabled so close to the ring that they could bring them up as I was getting off."
Hester was the first to go in the class in the irons of Hester Equestrian's Katie Riddle, and the pair posted a time of 69.63 seconds with 4 faults. "I haven't had her quite that long, but she has a big stride, and after I walked the course, I felt like it was geared for a more normal horse stride. Most of the lines were set really nice. The last line walked a touch long, but since it was the last line heading toward the gate, I knew it would come up short," she said. "I just rode it pretty normal and was very satisfied with how she [Katie Riddle] went and I couldn't ask more of her."
Christi Israel, in the irons of her own Cracky Z, followed and turned in a clean first round effort in a time of 76.05 seconds, just within the time allowed of 77 seconds. Their second round resulted in 4 faults, and the pair finished in seventh place overall.
Mary Lisa Leffler, of Brookeville, Maryland, and Rolling Acres' Bling Bling followed Israel and were the first pair to turn in double-clean rounds in times of 70.46 seconds and 43.33 seconds, respectively, setting the new time to beat.
Southland Stables' Vancouver IV, piloted by Christina Jason, followed Leffler and Bling Bling, but with 4 faults in a time of 70.15 seconds, would finish in ninth place overall.
Hester returned to the arena, this time in the irons of Hester Equestrian's Lorstakov. The pair posted a first round time in 71.63 seconds with 8 jump faults. "I've had him a little over a year," commented Hester. "He is just 7 and has all the scope in the world, but we are working on his 'rideability' because he's a little difficult," said Hester.
Leffler and Bling Bling continued to hold the lead until Jason Berry and Willoughby Stable's Varios turned in double-clean rounds in times of 71.89 seconds and 40.63 seconds, respectively, setting the new time to beat.
Leffler returned to the ring, this time in the irons of Rolling Acres' Carlot. Although the pair posted double-clean rounds in times of 71.86 seconds and 42.29 seconds, respectively, their time wasn't fast enough to take the lead from Berry and the pair settled for third place overall.
Hester and Wender followed Leffler. "He [Wender] turns really tight and smooth," said Hester. "I don't need to gallop, and I can just let him go. He knows his job and likes to win."
The pair turned in double-clean rounds in times of 68.96 seconds and 40.50 seconds, respectively, grabbing the lead and setting a pace that couldn't be topped.
Hester returned to the ring again, this time in the irons of Hester Equestrian's Clueless P. After turning in a clean first round, a rail in the second round in 40.74 seconds would see them receive the sixth-placed ribbon.
"We've had Clueless for less than a year, and she was third in the Atlanta Grand Prix," said Hester. "She [Clueless] has a shorter stride, which helped us in the jump-off because I had to gallop her more. She could have beat Wender, but after I got the rail, I slowed her down a bit. She's 10 years old and only 15.1 hands. People say, 'Oh, look at the pony!' And I tell them not to say that because we just let her think she's a big horse!"
Hester also had the last ride in the class, in the irons of Hester Equestrian's Arly. Despite double-clean rounds in times of 72.36 and 44.39 seconds, respectively, the pair finished in fourth place overall. "We just bought Arly, and we've had him about a year. He was kind of hanging out after recovering from an injury, and I've been bringing him back slowly," said Hester. "He's a grand prix horse, and since he's on his way back, I didn't want to run him around and he just jumped it so easy."
"I'm really excited how well Wender is going," said Hester. "Last year he was sick for a long time. He was found to have PSSM Type 2, which is basically an insulin resistance for horses. It's a genetic disorder, and he can't have any sugar. For instance, he gets celery instead of carrots. He has just been coming back into competition again, and I just started showing in November. He's been doing really well, and I anticipate that he will continue to do so all winter."
"This is our first time showing in Pensacola," added Hester. "We like it a lot here! It's very warm, and the people are so nice."
In addition to the win in the $10,000 EMO Jumper Classic, Hester also received the Kastel Denmark Style of Riding Award. Hester was selected by the Classic Company staff as the rider who exhibited the best American style of riding and possessed the respectful, dignified, courteous and workmanlike manner of a true sportsman.
Press release courtesy of the Classic Company.