Harrisburg, PA - October 18, 2014 - The Amateur Owner riders were dressed to impress in their shadbelly coats at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show as riders sailed over the 3'6" courses and vied for the prestigious championship titles.
GOLDEN RULE, owned and ridden by Stephanie Danhakl of Pacific Palisades, CA, received the high honor and was crowned Grand Amateur Owner Hunter Champion. The pair dominated the Amateur Owner Hunter 3'6" 18-35 division, clinching the Handy and Formal Attire classes, the Amateur Owner Hunter 3'6" 18-35 Championship, and the Wintarra Ring Perpetual Trophy. Antonio Aguilar, GOLDEN RULE's groom, received the Grand Amateur Owner Hunter Grooms Award.
"It's so exciting!" said Danhakl with a smile. "I'm so happy and I don't even know what to think. My horse was awesome and I'm so proud of him. I would have been happy just leaving with a Championship, so to get the Grand is just icing on the cake."
Reserve Champion in the Amateur Owner Hunter 3'6" 18-35 Championship was LA PATRON owned by R & R Hunter Horses and ridden by Meghan Rohrbaugh of Mechanicsburg, PA.
John Ingram of Nashville, TN, and AIRPORT 48 owned by John and Stephanie Ingram, stepped into the winner's circle after clinching the Amateur Owner 3'6" 36 & Over Championship and the Carlos F. Bodwell Memorial Perpetual Trophy. The pair won the Handy class in the division, and his groom Aurelio Pacheco was awarded the Grooms Award. EMPIRE, owned by David Gochman and ridden by Becky Gochman of New York, NY, took Reserve Champion after winning the Formal Attire class in the division.
John and Stephanie Ingram were thrilled as AIRPORT 48, who earned the highest numerical score throughout the amateur owner hunter division, was awarded the EMO Agency Amateur Owner Hunter High Five Award.
"It feels great," said Ingram. "We bought him as an equitation horse and all I can say is that he's really exceeded all of our expectations. He's just great."
MINDFUL, owned by Kensel LLC and ridden by Kelley Farmer, was awarded the EMO Agency Overall Hunter High Five Award, as the horse that earned the highest numerical score during the show, which was 95.0 points.
The Pennsylvania National Horse Show (PNHS) is one of the largest indoor horse shows in the U.S., hosting horses and competitors from across the country with 20,000 spectators attending from the Mid-Atlantic region. With over 1,400 qualified horses competing for $485,000 in prize money, the show features national Hunter and Jumper competition and is the site of the Pessoa/USEF National Hunter Seat Medal Final, the Randolph College/USEF National Junior Jumper Championships, North American League (NAL) National Finals and the $85,000 Grand Prix de Penn National.
In addition to world-class equestrian competition, the horse show offers a unique shopping experience with boutique vendors showcasing one-of-a-kind, equine inspired products including jewelry, fun fashion and accessories.
The 10-day event is being held from October 9th to 18th at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg, PA. Proceeds from the event benefit community equine and youth programs. Since its inception in 1945, the Pennsylvania National Horse Show Foundation has donated nearly $2 million to charitable entities.
Live coverage of the competition, scoring results and more details on the show are all available at www.PAnational.org.