California Riding Magazine • December, 2012

Winner's Circle

Tylor Nowell reaches the top of the Onondarka Medal Final after four long years. Photo: Flying Horse Photography

Onondarka and WCE Champs Crowned

After placing second in the 2011 Onondarka Medal Final, Tylor Nowell (Nina Alario, trainer) declared, "I feel really good about placing second, although I would love to win next year." 2012 was Tylor's year, and she achieved her dream of leading the victory gallop in the Onondarka Medal Final. "This year in particular, it just means so much because it's the 50th anniversary," Tylor commented. "This is my fourth year participating, and it has been really great to be able to track my progress over the past four years and see how far I've come." The victory was even sweeter since Tylor will age out next year and this was her last chance to win the title.

The Onondarka Medal Final, open to riders aged 12 and under, has a prestigious history and past winners have included equestrian greats like Susie Hutchison, Lise Quintero and Francie Steinwedell. Tylor is already a talented rider and despite being off all summer due to an injury, she and her Askaban came back stronger than ever to win the Nor Cal Junior Medal Final in October. "I had a rough summer and I couldn't ride, so it was great that I've had the trainers and the training to help me get back to where I was before, if not farther ahead," Tylor reflected.

In the West Coast Equestrians Junior-Amateur Medal Final, young talent took center stage again as 14-year-old Alexandra Ladove (Lori De Rosa, trainer) and her Schubert beat out stiff competition. It was a hard fought win for Alexandra, who didn't have the performance she wanted in last year's medal final. Alexandra explained, "I got Schubert just a couple of weeks before the final last year and hadn't figured him out. He has a really big stride, but he's super elastic so it's easy to get him back and add a stride. That took me a really long time to get used to, so last year I left out and added strides in the same course and wasn't consistent."

This year, consistency was not an issue and was in fact her strong point throughout the final. Judges DiAnn Langer and Patricia Griffith, who also judged the Onondarka Medal Final, immediately homed in on Alexandra's consistency. "She was the most consistent for sure. Some of the other riders had to climb their way up into the ribbons, but she stayed on top the entire competition. She has beautiful style and her rounds were smooth," commented DiAnn.

Both finals were held during the Los Angeles National Horse Show at the LA Equestrian Center. Thanks to LEG Up News for this report.

Lane Clarke & Casseur de Prix. Photo: Rick Osteen

Lane Clarke On A Tear

Lane Clarke, of Hayden Show Jumping, does it again. Winning the $55,000 Villas at Rancho Valencia World Cup Qualifying Grand Prix at the Del Mar Fall Festival marks the third time this year for Lane to win a big Grand Prix, and it puts him solidly in the top 10 ranking of the North American West Coast World Cup League.

Lane has had much success recently winning or placing in many Grand Prix and other money classes on the West Coast circuit. At the Del Mar Fall Festival alone he won:

• 1st - $55,000 Del Mar Fall II WC Qualifier - Casseur de Prix
• 1st - $1,000 Del Mar Fall I 5- & 6-Year Old Jumpers - Caspar S
• 1st - $250 Del Mar Fall II 1.40M Jumpers - Caretol
• 1st - $250 Del Mar Fall II 1.35M Jumpers - Caretol
• 1st, 2nd & 4th - $250 Del Mar Fall I 1.45M Jumpers - Caretol, Casseur de Prix & Kiss the Sky

These were all difficult classes with many entries and tough courses. In the World Cup Qualifier, 37 horse and rider teams competed and only four went clear on the challenging 1.60M course designed by Olaf Peterson. Of those, just two went double clear with Lane besting second-place finisher Nicole Shahinian-Simpson by over six seconds.

The 26-year old credits much of his success to building great relationships among his "team," including head trainer Mickey Hayden and his staff, grooms, owners, vets, shoer, and most importantly his horses. On the ground and in the saddle, Lane develops a bond with all the horses he rides including Granville Equine's Casseur de Prix.

Molly Peddicord rocks her work off to win the LAHJA Junior Medal Final.
Photo: Flying Horse Photography

LAHJA Season Finales

For Molly Peddicord (Kost Karazissis, trainer), winning the LAHJA Junior Medal Finals was a team effort. "As of last Sunday, I did not have a horse to ride in the finals because my horse was off," Molly explained. "Jenny Karazissis and her entire family worked so hard and put in a lot of time to help me find a horse, but I just wasn't clicking with any of the horses we tried. Lisa Winn ended up calling the Cyrus family and asked if I could use their horse, Constantine Carolus, and they were gracious enough to let me use him."

Noah Cyrus was one of Molly's many barn mates who stayed to cheer her on. When she was named champion, the cheers rang off of the rafters of the Equidome and Molly gave high fives and hugs to her barn mates during her victory gallop. "I'm so grateful to the whole Karazissis family, Lisa Winn, all of my barn mates, and especially the Cyrus family," Molly commented. "Constantine is such a good horse, and I'm so glad I got to ride him. He was always there with me throughout each course, and he was just perfect."

Also making lasting memories in the Equidome was 20-year-old Belle Calkin (Joe Thorpe, trainer) aboard her Belle Agio. The pair rose to the top of the LAHJA Senior Medal Final field with their consistency throughout the three phases. As with the LAHJA Junior Medal Final, the ride for the ribbons came down to the work off. The top four included Virginia Fout (Archie Cox, trainer), Alicyn Roy (Mary Gatti, trainer), and Shelly Lachow (Hap Hansen, trainer). Belle entered the work off in second place, but her beautiful execution vaulted her to the top.

Belle was one of only two to complete the work off correctly. Unlike the juniors, the top four seniors were allowed to watch their fellow competitors work off. The judges asked the riders to return to the line at a sitting trot at the end of the work off. "The two people before me didn't do the sitting trot back to the lineup. I got really confused and wondered if I had heard the work off correctly. But I trusted myself and decided to sit the trot, which thankfully was the right decision," Belle recounted.

Belle was ecstatic about her win. "This is my first medal final win ever and I didn't really have any expectations going into it. My mind set is always to try my hardest and have fun riding. I am so incredibly happy and shocked that I won." The win was even more meaningful as Belle shared it with her Belle Agio. "I've had him for seven years and we've been through a lot," Belle explained. "He's always been such a consistent and honest horse. I'm so glad I have such a strong connection with him and that we could share this win together."

Dorothy Rose Kauffman-Skloff (Ginny Plancke, trainer) is no stranger to winning blue ribbons, but her win in the LAHJA Pony Medal Final on Rosmel's Millennium (Robin Greenwood - GC Ponies, owner) was particularly special. "I've never really competed in a final before, so it was great to win it," Dorothy said. "It's my last year competing in small ponies as well, so to win on my small pony was pretty memorable."
Thanks to LEG Up News for this report.

Congratulations to Tara Couch and Barca Van Het Eikelbos, winners of the Modified Jr/Amateur Jumper Classic at LA National Preview, held Nov. 7-11 at the LA Equestrian Center. Tara rides with Harley Brown Equestrian, located in Menlo Park.
Click here
for more on Harley and Olivia Brown.