Traverse City, MI - Horse Shows by the Bay in Traverse City, Michigan, had a very busy day in the hunter ring. There were two grand championships awarded. The first was for the Grand Conformation Hunter Championship sponsored by Equestrian Endeavors. This award went to Timber Ridge and Kelley Farmer. The second was the Grand Working Hunter Championship sponsored by Equestrian Endeavors and was given to Last Call and Cookie Beck.
"Last Call jumped really high; he jumped two feet over every jump, he's a bit of an over achiever," said Beck. Last Call is a nine-year-old dark bay gelding who has been training under Beck for a year and a half. The pair took championship honors in the First Year Green Working Hunters sponsored by the Dandino Family of Monclova, Ohio. Last Call had two firsts and two seconds over fences and took the blue in the under saddle class as well.
Reserve Champion was once again awarded to Cookie Beck but this time for her ride on Hidden Creek's Lennon. The seven-year-old chestnut gelding did well over fences and took home second place honors in the hack. "They're both really fun jumpers, really scopey, and really good movers. They're both coming into their own and really starting to get it together. They're incredible horses to ride," smiled Beck.
Following Beck's sweep of the First Year division came the Second Year Green Working Hunters sponsored by Emily Wygod and Tranquility Lakes Farm of New York, New York. The champion was Sunshine and Kelley Farmer and the reserve champion was NLF Shakespear's Rhythm and Peter Pletcher.
The Green Conformation division was sponsored by Top Call, LLC- Greg and Jessica Crolick of Auburn Hills, Michigan. Championship honors went to Playmaker and Tammy Provost. The reserve champion was News To Me and Meg Howard-Fuleky.
In the Regular Conformation division, Timber Ridge and Kelley Farmer captured top honors. With flawless jumping rounds, the pair went on to become overall Grand Conformation Hunter Champion. Cisco and Meagan Murray were reserve.
The last of the sponsored hunter divisions was the Regular Working Hunters sponsored by CHFarm, LLC of Wellington, Florida. The championship ribbon was awarded to Topsider and Caroline Weeden. Reserve champion was Valiant and Tammy Provost.
At the end of the day, it was a smiling Beck who took home the most blue ribbons from Horse Shows by the Bay. "Dean and Alex have done a great job of improving the horse show every single year. It is beautiful. I like the fact that they are so personal, I can call them on the phone as managers and say what do you think about doing this or what do you think about doing that," explained Beck. "They're really nice and very accommodating to the exhibitors and the trainers. They really try hard to please all of us and that is not an easy task. They do a great job and it is a very fun horse show to come to."
Competition will continue tomorrow at Flintfields Horse Park. One of the featured classes will be the $15,000 Chronicle of the Horse/USHJA International Hunter Derby, which gets under way at 5:00 p.m. For more information, please visit www.horseshowsbythebay.com.
Photo Credit: Last Call and Cookie Beck Earned the Grand Working Hunter Championship at Horse Shows by the Bay I. Photo © 2010 Katherine Sarasohn