California Riding Magazine • August, 2012

Winner's Circle

Californians Clean Up at Rebecca Farms

After leading each event in the three-day competition, Kristi Nunnink and her Holsteiner R-Star performed a near-flawless round in Sunday's (July 15) show jumping competition, dropping only one rail to win the CIC*** division at The Event at Rebecca Farm in Kalispell, MT.  Landing in a close second, Katherine Groesbeck and Oz the Tin Man navigated the colorful and elegantly decorated course with only two rails down, and Jolie Wentworth jumped Tracy Bowman's horse GoodKnight through the only clean and fault-free round to finish third.
Total spectator count over the four days of competition came in at 19,500, with nearly 500 horses competing.

"I'm really pleased with our finish," said Kristi, who is based in Auburn. "I felt really comfortable and the jumps didn't seem too big to me. But, like I said, my horse was bred for show jumping and that makes this phase much easier."

The stars of the Advanced division were Geriann Henderson and her 13-year-old Thoroughbred Kingslee, students of Debbie Rosen's Wild Ride Eventers in Somis. Geriann lives and attends college in Colorado, but she's summering with Debbie and her team at the El Sueno Equestrian Center.

Trainer Jan Pearce and Assistant Trainer Teri Anderson with their 2012 CPHA Child/Adult Medal Final Champion Meg Rash and Reserve Champion Mimi Kelly.

Pearce Sweeps At Woodside

Jan Pearce and the students at her Woodside hunter/jumper training barn had a fantastic Golden Gate Classic July 4-8. After supervising students riding in all three rings, Jan was the competition's highest scoring trainer based on her riders' results. Her students Meg Rash and Mimi Kelly finished first and second in the CPHA Child/Adult Medal Final and Mimi rode her Le Dutch to champion in the Modified Low Hunters. Amanda Nichols and Katie Mahler scored first and second in the WCE class, and other champs included Audrey Isackson and Ester Cooney. To top it off, Jan's barn won honors for the best set-up and best tack room.

Harley's A Hero

Seven nations represented the field of 20 horse and rider combinations in the late-June $30,000 June Classic III Grand Prix in San Juan Capistrano. Nearing the end of the qualifying round, California-based Australian Harley Brown was the one to catch with both jump-off qualifiers, Angelli and Cassiato. With two riders to go, Nicole Shahinian-Simpson was able to break through and qualify her mount, Picturized, for the jump-off. Course designer Jack Robson set a track that challenged both young and seasoned horses and asked riders surprising questions that resulted in several refusals, numerous unlucky rails, and an unfortunate spill where both horse and rider walked away unscathed.  

Brown and Shahinian-Simpson returned for the jump-off knowing it would take speed and precision to get through Robson's design without fault. Returning to the track first was Brown and Paige Harryman's 13-year-old Westphalian gelding, Angelli. Brown continued his fault free streak with a smart but quick ride under the time allowed in 42.046. As Brown prepped his second jump-off mount, Shahinian-Simpson and her 9-year-old Hanoverian mare, Picturized, were able to cut corners and angle fences to better the leading time and go double-clear in 38.964. The crowed eagerly waited for Brown to return with his famous mount, Cassiato, to see if he could also go double-clear and walk away champions. Brown galloped in and guided the mighty grey Holsteiner to a precise but swift round, floating over the fences with ease and stopping the clock to reclaim the lead in 37.097 seconds.