$100,000 Showplace Challenge Cup Kicks Off with Round One Wins for Erin Nelson, Erin Haas and Marshall Reed

Wayne, IL - The Showplace Spring Spectacular III began on Monday morning with the first of three rounds of competition in the brand new $100,000 Showplace Challenge Cup Series. The Challenge Cup features a unique new world cup format, multi-phase event for the jumpers. The phases of the Challenge Cup are pinned independently and riders are able to post additional NAL, M&S, and WIHS points to supplement their winnings from Spectacular I & II.

Three qualifying classes will be held at the beginning of the week leading up to the Challenge Cup Finals on Tuesday and Wednesday. Faults incurred during only the first round of each of these classes will count towards rider standings, and will carry forward to determine the order of go for the championships. All classes will be held in Lamplight's expansive Grand Prix ring, which features new footing for 2010.

The first day of competition for the Showplace Challenge Cup qualifiers was held this morning with class wins going to Erin Nelson, Erin Haas, and Marshall Reed. Illustrious course designer Conrad Homfeld set the tracks for the day's classes and challenged the riders to compete at their best. The $2,500 High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers had their first round of competition to start the day, and the class win went to Erin Nelson of Flower Mound, TX, riding Gabriella Z.  

Nelson and Gabriella Z had the fastest double clear of the morning in 39.095 seconds to earn first place. Samantha Wagner and Ronoldo finished in second with a time of 39.514 seconds. Lisa Goldman rode Centurion B through the timers in 39.623 seconds for third place, and Hunter Holloway and Argentina finished in 40.693 seconds to earn the fourth place honors.

Eighteen-year-old Erin Nelson was competing at the Showplace Spring Spectacular for the first time this year and has had a great experience working with trainer Wilhelm Genn. Nelson is usually coached by her brother, Chris Nelson, and competes throughout the country. The rider's winning mount, Gabriella Z, is a nine-year-old mare that Nelson hopes to qualify for indoors this year. The pair won the $25,000 Show Jumping Classic Grand Prix in Tyler, TX, three weeks ago and now has another great victory to add to their resume.

"I just got Gabby in March, so she is a pretty new ride for me," Nelson stated. "She is really quick off the ground, but I like them kind of fiery. She is just awesome; she gives 110% at every jump."

Nelson commented on the course, stating, "I thought the course rode great today. Conrad builds some really nice tracks; they are for sure hard enough and I think it was a very nice course to start off the week."

"The Challenge Cup is a great format and it is nice that they are trying to do something different and fun for the kids," Nelson added. "This is my first time here and it is a beautiful place. Nothing is really far away and I think the hospitality is great. It is a really nice horse show."

Up Next, the $2,500 Low Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers had their first round of competition for the Showplace Challenge Cup.  Thirty eight entries showed over the course with many clear rounds, and 16 were able to jump double clear to race against the clock. Erin Haas, of Chelsea, MI, was the rider to win guiding her horse Chianti 67 through the timers in the fastest 36.757 seconds. Dana Waters earned second place with a clear jump-off in 37.366 seconds riding Biloxi. Waters' daughter Hayley took home third place riding Latina to the finish in 37.687 seconds. Amanda Metzler and Fire Cat finished in fourth place in 38.193 seconds, while Haas also took home fifth place honors riding All of a Sudden through the timers in 38.358 seconds.

Class winner Chianti 67 is an eleven-year-old Hanoverian gelding that Haas has had for a number of years and shows in the high and low amateur divisions. "Chianti is a bit of a pony ride; he is a windup toy that you just kick and get wound up and let him rip," Haas stated. "He really likes to go fast, so especially with a class like this going fast one day does not typically hurt him the next day. I usually go fast with him every time I go because he likes it and it is fun."

"I was happy with everybody today; all of my horses were great," Haas continued. "I had four horses in this class because the faults carry over for the finals, so I figured I would do all of them and then see where they stand. These are good classes and even for the green ones the courses are nice, so it is good to show them and give them experience. Conrad has great courses; they are nice and smooth and they ask questions of the horses, but they still ride very nicely."

Haas enjoys the competition at the Showplace Spring Spectacular and was excited about the Challenge Cup as an addition to this year's schedule. "I was not sure what to expect, but it seems like a lot of fun and we will see how it all turns out," she said. "It gives the riders something new to look forward to during the week and as an amateur it is fun to have a special class like this. That is what I really like about coming to the shows here in Chicago is that they have so many fun classes between the derby and the gambler's choice and now this challenge cup; it makes it really interesting."

Completing the day one Showplace Challenge Cup competition, young Marshall Reed guided Juliette, owned by Steve Schaefer, to victory in the $2,500 WIHS Children's Adult Jumper Classic. Seven entries were able to jump clear over the course, and Reed's time of 35.156 seconds with Juliette was the fastest of the day to earn the first place prize.  Jessica Miltz and Sentra finished in second with a time of 35.774 seconds, and Alissa Kinsey and Grisset earned third in 36.024 seconds.  Naomi Bradley and Kaydin Z finished in fourth, while Audi's Classic Pleasure and Mary Tanner received the fifth place ribbon.

Thirteen-year-old Marshall Reed, of Maple Park, IL, rides with trainer Steve Schaefer. Schaefer is the owner of Juliette, the ten-year-old bay mare that Reed has been riding for a couple of months now. "She is a really fun horse," Reed stated. "I had a really fast time with her in yesterday's class too and ended up in second place, but it is always good to lose a little when you are trying to win."

Reed noted that he has been riding as long as he can remember and will make it his goal to move up to do the Low Junior Jumpers this year. He has enjoyed a great two weeks of competition at the Showplace Spring Spectacular Series and had a great first day for the third week of competition. "I really enjoy the Challenge Cup and it is a neat idea to have a long term goal and not just show class by class," Reed expressed. "The course was fun today. I like the wall, it is a neat jump, and I felt like everything rode well."

The Showplace Spring Spectacular III and $100,000 Showplace Challenge Cup competition will continue tomorrow at the Lamplight Equestrian Center in Wayne, IL. The Showplace Challenge Cup will run through Wednesday, June 23, and the final week of competition for the Showplace Spring Spectacular Horse Show Series will run through Friday, June 25. For more information on Showplace Productions and the 2010 Showplace Spring Spectacular Horse Show, please visit www.showplaceproductions.com.


1   123 GABRIELLA Z  ERIN NELSON  71.172  39.095
2   168 RONOLDO SAMANTHA WAGNER  72.597  39.514
3   340 CENTURION B LISA GOLDMAN  68.970  39.623
4   331 ARGENTINA  HUNTER HOLLOWAY  73.119  40.693
5   199 BORITAS  CHENOA MCELVAIN   72.618  40.925
6   330 CHARLY BROWN  TAYLOR WERTHEN  72.678   42.500
7   333 ARMSTRONG  LILLIE ROSS  70.788  4  39.323
8   313 MAVERICK SHANA BARNETT 71.571  4  42.705

1   131 CHIANTI 67  ERIN HAAS  62.077  36.757
2   317 BILOXI  DANA WATERS  63.892  37.366
3   319 LATINA  HAYLEY WATERS  60.268  37.687
4   267 FIRECAT  AMANDA METZLER   62.066  38.193
5   132 ALL OF A SUDDEN ERIN HAAS   64.180  38.358
6   215 TREASURE  LILLIE ROSS  61.831 38.611
7   234 LET'S GO HAYLEY HANSEN  66.001  38.931
8   186 HIGH RUSTLER  ELLIE MORRIS  66.889   39.703

1   266 JULIETTE   MARSHALL REED   58.030   35.156
2   368 CENTRA  JESSICA MILTZ  65.520   35.774
3   239 GRISSET  ALISSA KINSEY  62.013  36.024
4   188 KAYDIN Z   NAOMI BRADLEY  65.344  37.505
5   278 AUDI'S CLASSIC PMARY TANNER   62.626  39.945
6   172 ROMY  KELSEY CONCKLIN  66.649   45.040
7   290 BOXER  CARRI D'ANGELO  67.918   45.105
8   311 MADONNA  ASHLEY REED   60.324  4  34.698

Photo Credits: Erin Nelson and Gabriella Z won the $2,500 High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper round one class in the Showplace Challenge Cup at the Showplace Spring Spectacular III. Photos © 2010 Lauren Fisher/PMG.  
Erin Haas and Chianti 67 earned the win in the $2,500 Low Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper round one class in the Showplace Challenge Cup at the Showplace Spring Spectacular III. Photos © 2010 Lindsay McCall/PMG.
Marshall Reed and Juliette won the $2,500 WIHS Children's/Adult Jumper Classic round one class in the Showplace Challenge Cup at the Showplace Spring Spectacular III. Photos © 2010 Lindsay mcCall/PMG.