June 2017 - SAHJA Medal Finals
Written by Stacy Garland
Wednesday, 31 May 2017 18:14
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left to right Josie Perez, Grace Cotter and Emilie Bell.

Emily, Ashley & Emilie take top honors.

report by Stacy Garland • photos by Clarke Miller

The Sacramento Area Hunter Jumper Association’s 2017 Medal Finals took place on April 30 at Leone Equestrians, located in Sacramento, with over 60 riders participating.

Medal finalists each received a classic patterned C4 belt sponsored by Leone Equestrians and Tack Warehouse. In each division, champions took home a director’s chair and $100 gift certificate; reserve champion, an engraved brush box; and third place, an equine backpack. The always fun and festive draw party took place on Saturday night with pizza and drinks provided by Leone Equestrians, in addition to complimentary wine tasting from Shadow Ranch Winery and a special dessert from Nothing Bundt Cakes Folsom, sponsored by Blackhound Equestrian and Stardust Pony Dreams. Throughout the weekend, riders participated in a fun photo booth challenge and the SAHJA raffle. Additional sponsors of the SAHJA Medal Finals included Oakland Tennis Club, Delphy Construction Company, Elegant Events and Sactown.com.

Emily Ose on Just Larry, Child/Adult Medal champ.

Emily Ose – Child/Adult Medal Champion

Emily Ose has been riding her entire life. It runs in the family, as her mom Lynnda Ose is also an equestrian. Emily got her first pony at 5 years old and started out from the very beginning competing on the SAHJA circuit. Over the years, Emily has competed in all three of SAHJA’s divisions within the Medal Finals: SAHJA Pony Medal, Mini Medal and the Child/Adult Medal. This year Emily had to make a last minute change prior to the Medal Finals. The Thursday prior to the event, Emily’s horse came up with a bruised foot and was unable to compete. Thankfully, her mom’s horse, Just Larry (AKA Larry), was available and ready to compete. Emily, along with her mom, ride with Sue Lighter from Lightacres located in Modesto.

Ashley Miller, Mini Medal Champ, riding Calandra.

Ashley Miller – Mini Medal Champion

Ashley Miller grew up around horses; her grandmother bred and showed gaited horses. Early on, Ashley had a love for hunter/jumpers and rode with Curtis Nelson Riding Stables in Sacramento until the time she left for college (many, many years ago…. according to Ashley). After taking almost 20 years off of riding to get married and have two children, she started back again about 10 years ago. Ashley has been riding with her trainer, Jeri Lou Paul, for most of that time. Jeri Lou Paul, located in Granite Bay, has taught her so much and Ashley feels more confident now than she did when she was riding as a teenager. She is currently riding a 10-year-old Oldenburg mare named Calandra. Ashley was thrilled to win the Mini Medal Finals, as it has been a goal of hers for quite some time. Next up, she’s focused on the SAHJA Child/Adult Medal.

Emilie Bell on Farmore Good as Gold, Pony Medal champion.

Emilie Bell – Pony Medal Champion

Emilie Bell began riding at the age of 4 at Leone Equestrians when her mom signed her up for horse camp over spring break. Shortly after, she began regular weekly riding lessons on schooling ponies and went on to have a pony of her own.

Emilie has had success in the hunter and jumper arena and in 2015, participated at USEF Pony Finals in Kentucky on her pony Paris where she finished 13th in the nation in the rated small ponies and received a special award for 10th under the age of 10.  For the SAHJA Medal Finals, Emilie rode Farmore Good as Gold (Aiden). She first rode him in September 2016 and participated in the NorCal Equitation Finals at Sonoma. Emily and Aiden clicked immediately and they went on to win Reserve Champion in NorCal Pony Equitation Classic and Reserve Champion in Rated Medium Ponies.

Emilie and Farmore Good as Gold train with Jan and Emma Hainze at JEM Stables in Dixon. Emilie’s barn mate, Josie Perez riding Pop The Top, was Reserve Champion.

For more information on the organization, visit www.sahja.org.


The Pony Medal Finalists.

The Child/Adult Medal Finalists.

The Mini Medal-ers.