Hamburg, NY - Gold Medalist Suzy Stafford had stellar performances this year winning Live Oak International Combined Driving Event with a Morgan Gelding “TTE Tea Time”, and the Overall Champion at the Devon Horse Show with Gail Aumiller’s mare “Sjaantje Sport”.
2013 Stafford has found herself becoming a familiar face in the breed show arena where she continues her winning ways. Seamlessly competing at a Combined Driving Event one weekend then at a pleasure or breed show the next.
“I do enjoy showing. Don’t get me wrong, I would be lying if I said I am not a competitive person but for me showing, whether it is a CDE or breed show is more about getting an evaluation of my training progress on each individual horse by another equine professional. Winning is a bonus!” Says Stafford with a smile.
Suzy and “Sjaantje” made several flawless trips around the show ring to bring home the championship win in Open Turn-out, working, cones and reinsmanship classes. “Sjaantje’s” owner Gail Aumiller also took the reins in the Amateur division with just as an impressive weekend. Aumiller took home the Championship wins in working, cones, turn-out and English pleasure driving. The crowning moment (literally) was when Gail and “Sjaantje” brought home the Regional Champion honors in the costume class.
“This horse is so kind, willing and trusting. At this show the mare did a total of sixteen classes. Not once did she protest going into the arena again and again. Granted she is fit as a fiddle but her mental state of mind was impeccable. I do believe “Sjaantje” likes to show off as much as her mother likes to show her off. “Stafford said laughing.
The next step for this magnificent trio is the IFSHA World and National Championship show held in Lexington VA the October 2nd-6th, 2013.
"I am excited for Gail, who will be showing the Amateur division as well as the costume class. She has blossomed as a driver and I expect great thing from the two of them. She is fully committed to working hard and giving “Sjanntje” every opportunity to shine. I truly appreciate that in an owner" Stafford said.
Stafford, who operates Stafford Carriage Driving out of Chester County, Pennsylvania, was the youngest and first American driver to win an Individual Gold Medal with Cefnoakpark Bouncer at the 2005 World Pony Driving Championships in England.
Since then she has continued to drive to success, being named the 2005 Driver of the Year by Chronicle of the Horse, winning the 2008 and 2009 National Single Pony Championship with Courage to Lead, and being awarded the Becky Hart Trophy in 2009. In 2011, Stafford Miss Josephine put in a brilliant performance at the 2011 FEI World Pony Driving Championships in Slovenia where they were awarded with the Individual Silver Medal, Stafford’s second consecutive Individual medal.
For more information on Stafford, visit her website at www.staffordcarriagedriving.com.