Don Graves and Cologne Earn Amateur/Owner Grand Hunter Championship

Traverse City, MI - The sun shone down on Flintfields Horse Park today as the Amateur/Owner Hunter divisions wrapped up. Grand Champion honors went to Cologne and Don Graves. The pair were champion of the Older Amateur/Owner division and ended up with the most points overall.

Yesterday, they were second and first over fences. Today, they were third and second over fences and third in the hack.  "We've got our routine down; we each know what the other is thinking. He has always been a solid competitor and this week the ribbons fell in the right order," said Graves.

Cologne is a 13-year-old bay gelding who has been showing with Graves for nine years. They show all year long in the hunter divisions and both horse and rider enjoy competing at Horse Shows by the Bay.  "This is a beautiful place, my horse has always liked it here. He likes Horse Shows by the Bay; he loves his summer vacation," smiled Graves.

Taking home Reserve Champion honors in the Older Amateur/Owners was Northern Crown and Beth Bidgood. They won the first jumping class yesterday and were fifth in the second class. Today, they were second and fourth, and won the under saddle.

In the Younger Amateur/Owners, the championship tricolor was awarded to Sunshine and Sheila Motley. The pair has only been showing together since the beginning of May. Two blues over fences yesterday, along with a second and fourth today, secured Motley the division win.  "I thought she was really good this weekend. She was really good yesterday, she won both jumping classes and did the hunter derby with Kelley [Farmer]," explained Motley. "This is my first time here to the horse show series; it's a beautiful facility."

Reserve Champion in the Younger Amateur/Owner hunter division was Enjoy, owned and shown by Ashley Romano. They were third over fences yesterday and won both jumping rounds today. The pair also picked up a fifth place ribbon in the hack.

Tomorrow will conclude the first week of showing at Horse Shows by the Bay and we will wrap up the Junior Hunter, Adult Hunter, and Children's Hunter Horse divisions. For more information, please visit

Photo Credit: Donald Graves and Cologne earned the Grand Amateur-Owner Hunter Championship at Horse Shows by the Bay I. Photo © 2010 Lauren Fisher/PMG.