Harrisburg, PA - Elizabeth Reynolds of Southampton, NJ and Own the Moment owned highest honors in the $10,000 North American League (NAL) Adult Hunter Finals at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show on Monday. Reynolds could not believe her good fortune as this was her first time competing in the NAL Finals and she was riding the first horse she ever owned. "We worked hard all year to trying to get here. Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine this would happen," said Reynolds. "It all paid off in the end and I just thank God for it all."
Reynolds began riding when she was eight-years-old, but she took ten years off to join the Air Force. She decided to get back in the saddle four years ago and purchased "Jag" as he is affectionately called the following year. She could not be happier with him.
"He's wonderful, I adore him," said Reynolds of the 13-year-old Selle Francais. "He is just about the best horse in the whole wide world. In the first year he broke his foot so we had a long road back from that. But he's perfect now, he's awesome."
A field of 27 riders competed in the Adult Hunter Finals over the Allen Rheinheimer designed course. The 12 highest scoring competitors judged by Ralph Caristo and Linda Hough were invited back for the second round and competition was fierce as only three points separated the top three. Since they ride in reverse order of merit, Reynolds was the last to go and she knew she had her work cut out for her. Linda Corvari of Long Valley, NJ and Eastwood had already gone, improving on their first round score of 80 to earn an 83 in the second round for a total of 163 points. Reynolds and Own the Moment scored an 82 in Round one and so there was little margin for error. They repeated their first round tally of 82 and secured the win with 164 points.
"My horse was great," said Reynolds. We just kind of kept it together. I was able to chill and just ride instead of getting nervous. I am a nervous person anyway, so it's a battle for me. I just tried to do my best."
Recognized as a premier equestrian event, The Pennsylvania National Horse Show runs October 8-17 and has been held indoors at the State Farm Show Complex and Expo Center in Harrisburg, PA since its inception in 1945.
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