Harrisburg, Pennsylvania - Mimi Gochman, 13, from Palm Beach, FL, showed everyone just how it is done in the $10,000 North American League (NAL) Low Junior/Amateur Owner Final at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show presented by the Lindsey Maxwell Charitable Fund, held at the Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg, PA.
Gochman was the only rider of the 29 starters to jump the course without penalty or time faults, not once but twice. She went 10th in the order with Everest De Muse, owned by Evergate Stables LLC, and 26th with Caleno 3, owned by Gotham Enterprizes LLC. Both horses were clear to advance to a jump-off, but Gochman chose to save her horses and decided the winner by their times on course. Everest De Muze finished the course in 64.273 seconds for first and Caleno 3 had a time of 68.371 for second place.
The course, designed by Bernardo Cabral, who hails from Lisbon, Portugal, proved to be the nemesis of the other riders but not Gochman. "It was a nice course," she said. "The challenge was really the second line. If you choose to do six and really get up there or to do seven and just know that you were going to get there easy. On my first horse I did the six, because he is always good at coming back to me. On my other horse I did seven because he has a very big stride and it is easier to get him to collect. The other difficult part was going out of the turn to the last line. It was on a weird angle with only about two strides to the last line.
"This is my first year doing jumpers at Harrisburg," continued Gochman. "It is very exciting. The ring isn't as small as I thought it would be. But you do have to keep your horse together, if they get strung out it is very hard to get them back in such a tight ring. For the jumpers I just concentrate on being very accurate. Keeping all the jumps up and supporting my horse. My goal is to do the highs next year, maybe the Prix de States.
"My horses were both very good today. To me they are both winners."
The NAL hosts National Finals annually at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show in Harrisburg, PA, and West Coast Finals at the Las Vegas National Horse Show in Las Vegas, NV. Both Finals include the following five divisions - Children's Hunter, Adult Hunter, Children's Jumper Presented by EquiFit, Adult Jumper Presented by SmartPak, aaleno #nd Low Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper.
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