Bridgehampton, NY-August 26, 2013- For the eighth consecutive year, the Hampton Classic hosted the championship finals for the Long Island Horse Show Series for Riders with Disabilities on Monday, with riders in three divisions competing for year-end titles.
Bridgehampton National Bank sponsored the day of competition for riders with disabilities, and Kevin O'Connor, the bank's CEO and president, handed out the ribbons and trophies.
USEF-licensed judge Gary Duffy awarded the following championships:
Advanced Equitation Spotter/Independent-Joe Penzel, of Huntington, N.Y. , riding Connect The Dots. Tied for reserve champion were Tyler Havlicek and Steven Snyder.
Beginner Equitation Spotter/Independent-Meaghan McAdam of Northport, N.Y., riding To The Max. Victoria Russo was the reserve champion.
Equitation With Aids-Emily McGowan of Melville, N.Y., riding Pippa. Joshua Gootnick was the reserve champion.
LIHSSRD classes are held at USEF-recognized competitions throughout Long Island and are open to all riders with a documented disability. Riders compete for points at each show to qualify for the Series Finals at the Hampton Classic.
"We're proud to highlight these championships as part of the Hampton Classic schedule," said Shanette Cohen, the Hampton Classic executive director. "The Championships are the culmination of the LIHSSRD's eight-show series, and what better place to host the grand finale than here at the Classic?"
The series, founded by Katie McGowan of HorseAbility, Inc., was created to provide riders with disabilities the same competitive experience that other equestrians enjoy. Riders are judged on equitation, and demonstration and knowledge of riding skills. Her grand-daughter, Emily McGowan, won the Equitation With Aids championship.
The 38th annual Hampton Classic Horse Show runs through Sunday, September 1 and features world-class show jumping competition, as well as magnificent shopping and a variety of entertainment attractions. The Classic features six show rings with more than 100 classes of competition for horses and riders of all ages. A wide range of jumper, hunter, equitation, short stirrup and leadline classes are all part of the Classic's schedule, as well as competitions for riders with disabilities.
The Classic features an FEI-recognized Grand Prix on three consecutive days - the $50,000 Spy Coast Farm/Young Horse Show Series Grand Prix Qualifier Presented by Longines on Friday, the $40,000 Longines Cup on Saturday, and the $250,000 FTI Grand Prix and FEI World Cup™ Qualifier on Sunday. The world-class field of riders will also be looking to win the new Longines Rider Challenge that awards $30,000 to the rider who accumulates the most points in the horse show's Open Jumper division.
The FTI Grand Prix is part of the Taylor Harris Triple Crown Challenge which awards a $200,000 bonus should the same horse-and-rider combination win the $100,000 Wells Fargo Grand Prix of Devon, $250,000 FTI Grand Prix at the Hampton Classic, and $250,000 Alltech Grand Prix at the Alltech National Horse Show. McLain Ward won the Wells Fargo Grand Prix of Devon on Rothchild in May and now stands to win the $200,000 bonus should he ride Rothchild to wins in the remaining two events in the Taylor Harris Triple Crown Challenge.
For those who can't make it to the show grounds, WVVH-TV, the official Long Island television station of the Hampton Classic, broadcasts up to five hours of competition and highlights each day during the Classic. These telecasts can also be seen online at www.WVVH.com.
Free live webcasts of all Grand Prix Ring competition will be available, courtesy of ShowNet, at www.HamptonClassic.com. Competition in other rings will be available on a pay-per-view basis at www.shownet.biz.
Further information on the Hampton Classic Horse Show, please visit the Hampton Classic website at www.hamptonclassic.com or call (631) 537-3177. Hampton Classic Horse Show, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) charitable corporation.