The weekend of September 6th & 7th brought the return of the Pacific Sporthorse Selection to Vacaville, CA. The 2 day event which made its debut in 2012 managed to exceed expectations once again this year, drawing guests from as far as Florida! The much anticipated event had been marketed nationally since early in the year and for all those who attended, it did not disappoint! The event was structured and managed by Christiane Noelting, Christian Hartung - both trainers at the Christiane Noelting Dressage Center, and Ellie Johnson, an adult amateur dressage rider. “We wanted to make this an event that had something for everyone.” said Ellie, and the PSS team definitely delivered on that promise!
This year saw the addition of “PSS University”, a 2 day free educational event which gathered professionals from a variety of disciplines to educate guests on topics ranging from “Poisonous Plants” to “Pilates for Riders.” Among this year’s lecturers were Jec Ballou, author of 101 Dressage Exercises..., Jochen Schleese of Schleese Saddlery, and USEF “S” judge, Melissa Cresswick. Auditors enjoyed workshops, live demonstrations, and interesting lectures over the 2 days. In particular, Jec Ballou’s live demo “Train Smarter, Not Harder,” and Dr. Clair Thunes’s lecture on “Fighting Inflammation with Diet,” stimulated a lot of interest from guests.
Once again PSS hosted a wonderful Gala Fundraiser featuring some fantastic wine and hors d’ouevres courtesy of Bourassa Vineyards, Scaggs Vineyard, Mondavi Wines, Il Fiorello Olive Oil and Sudwerk Brewery. It was “first class” all the way and guests were delighted by some really special exhibitions from the FEI musical freestyle ridden by Region 7 Team Young Rider, Jamie Pestana to vaulting by the Tambourine Vaulters.
There was even a very entertaining “soccer match” between several of the auction horses! The evening’s comic relief was delivered during the “Championship Jump and Bike” competition where riders raced their horses over jumps only to dismount and ride a bicycle through the sand to reach the finish line first. It was close, but Ian McFarlane of WindFall Farm came away with the Champion Title.
On Sunday, September 7th, the tent was again full of guests buzzing with auction excitement! The day started off with a presentation of 4 foals, the dressage horses and hunter / jumpers including many beautiful horses who had been imported from Germany especially for the auction. The audience was appreciative and the general consensus was that the quality of the horses has
improved every year. One of the standout favorites was the 3 year old De Champ son, Desario who ultimately earned the top bid of the day: $61,000!
More than 400 guests enjoyed a spectacular show and glass of champagne while the top quality collection of auction horses and foals were presented. The riders were excellent and the stunning horses represented some of today’s most popular bloodlines. Breeds in the auction included Hannoverian, Dutch WB, Oldenburg, RPSI, Selle Francais, Belgian Warmblood, and even a darling
North American Pony. It was both exciting and educational and of course it was especially exciting for the lucky winning bidders! Bidders came in person or phoned in from across the country and horses will now be making the trip to their new homes as far away as Florida. The average hammer price for the horses was $32,080.
Other noteworthy contributions of the PSS were the charitable donations collected over the two days totaling $8,691! The Breast Cancer Research Foundation and CDS Club 100 were this year’s two recipient charities. Schockemoehle Stud and Landgestut Celle from Germany donated breedings to their world famous stallions, Sir Donnerhall and Don Frederico respectively for the breast cancer fundraiser. Guests got a chance to practice their bidding skills on the breedings while giving to a worthy cause. The PSS also used a raffle of several items and a live auction of a Schleese saddle donated by Jochen Schleese, to collect scholarship money for CDS Club 100 young riders. All of the raffle winners were so excited to receive such nice gifts and be supporting a worthy cause at the same time.
At the post-auction celebration, all of the PSS management team was enthusiastic about the outcome. “We are so happy to be bringing such a worthy event to our community.” said Ellie. “The whole purpose of the auction was to bring buyers and sellers of top quality horses together. We did that and more! We also used the PSS to give back to the community in the form of
education, entertainment, and charitable donations.”
“We wish to thank everyone who supported the Pacific Sporth Horse Selection.” Christian continued, “We are so happy with the outcome and we hear that guests are already looking forward to next year.”
If you didn’t get to attend in person, you can check out the Pacific Sporthorse Selection website!