Judges Named for 2013 Southeast Medal Finals

Tuesday, August 6, 2013
Posted by Carrie Wirth for Phelps Media Group, Inc. International


Linda Andrisani will judge this year's Southeast Medal Final along with Molly Flaherty, Tony Sgarlata and Jennifer Drahan. Photo by Kenneth Kraus.
Linda Andrisani will judge this year's Southeast Medal Final along with Molly Flaherty, Tony Sgarlata and Jennifer Drahan. Photo by Kenneth Kraus.
Jacksonville, FL - Southeast Medal Finals management is pleased to announce the judging panel for this year's show, to be held September 19-22, 2013 at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center. The 2013 judges will include Linda Andrisani, Molly Flaherty, Tony Sgarlata and Jennifer Drahan.

Andrisani has previously judged seven of the eight ASPCA Maclay Regional Finals, missing only Region 3 - the Southeast Region. So this year's she thrilled to be able judge the Maclay Regional Finals at the Southeast Medal Finals.

"I have always really enjoyed being part of the Maclay Regionals. I have done all of the regionals in my judging career, but this one. This is the only one that was missing, so I'm really looking forward to it," shared Andrisani. "It's also a very new show and event being put on there, so it's exciting to be a part of something new and up and coming."

Andrisani brings to the Southeast Medal Finals over 25 years of hunter seat equitation judging experience, having made her mark as one of the most well-respected judges in the country judging at such show as the Hampton Classic and countless others. In addition to her time on the judge's stand, Andrisani ran her own successful horse-show operation until 2006, during which time her students and horses racked up numerous accolades across the country. Andrisani also produced the popular DVD The Judge's Eye.

Flaherty also adds years of judging, riding and coaching experience to this year's judges line-up. Since 1987, Flaherty has co-owned and trained out of Arcadia Farm in Westchester County, NY, training riders to top awards up and down the east coast, earning accolades at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show and the Alltech National Horse Show.

"Being involved with medal finals such as this one you get to see some of the area's best equitation riders," said Flaherty. "I'm really looking forward to judging this group and being a part of such an exciting new event."

A fellow New York based trainer and judge, Sgarlata joins this year's impressive South East Medal Finals judging panel. Sgarlata has been showing and training hunters and jumpers for over 25 years, and he currently operates Tony Sgarlata Sales. As a USEF 'R' registered judge, Sgarlata has judged across the country in all aspects of the hunter and equitation rings including the International Hunter Futurity, numerous World Champion Hunter Rider events and several USHJA hunter derbies. Sgarlata also writes a monthly column titled Ask the Judge for Horse Bits Magazine.

"I was there last year for the first Southeast Medal Finals, and you get to see some of the best riders in the country," Sgarlata said. "I was certainly impressed with the quality of the riders and trainers that are there, so I am really looking forward to judging this year."

The judges will preside over the numerous feature classes held at the 2013 Southeast Medal Finals, including the Phelps Media Group Southeast Junior Medal Final, ASPCA Maclay Regional Finals, the $7,500 Children's/Adult Southeast Championship, which is open to all riders, the Southeast Adult Medal Finals and more.

Joining the panel specifically for the Southeast Junior Medal Final and the Southeast  Adult Medal Final is judge, Jennifer Drahan. Drahan hails from Wellington, FL with an extensive background in the hunter/jumper industry. Modeled after the New England Medal Finals, the four judges on the panel will score the classes using open numerical scoring, allowing for particularly fair and subjective scoring of these headlining hunter seat equitation classes.

"When James (Lala) and I were at Ox Ridge, the New England Medal Finals was one of our favorite shows," said Drahan. "This show has brought so much to the Southeast as a venue for up-and-coming-equitation riders. As a judge, it is always exciting to see new talent. I strongly believe in equitation as the basis for all good riding. That is something that we offer in our country that is not offered in other countries."

In the jumper ring, highlights include the $5,000 Welcome Stake on Thursday and the $25,000 Land Rover of Jacksonville Grand Prix, held Friday night to allow trainers and riders to focus on the equitation classes on Saturday and Sunday.
The Southeast Medal Finals is held at one of the premier equestrian facilities on the east coast, the Jacksonville Equestrian Center is centrally located. The complex includes a network of adjacent trails, available to explore and enjoy for a casual hack during horse show down times. With some of the top junior riders in the country competing, Southeast Medal Finals is the perfect preparation for the fall indoor circuit. To learn more about Southeast Medal Finals check out

Southeast Medal Finals Fast Facts:
WHAT: The Southeast Medal Finals is a USEF A-Rated indoor hunter, jumper and equitation horse show. USEF Rated Jumper Level 3


WHEN: September 19-22, 2013

WHERE: The Jacksonville Equestrian Center, Jacksonville, FL, featuring a large indoor coliseum with 3,000 seats, two outdoor rings and 500 permanent stalls.
13611 Normandy Blvd., Jacksonville, FL 32221

Phelps Media Group Southeast Junior Medal Finals
Southeast Adult Medal Finals
ASPCA Maclay Regionals
$25,000 Land Rover Grand Prix of Jacksonville
$5,000 Welcome Stake
$7,500 Child/Adult Jumper Final
New European Style Developing Sport Horse Division
Southeast Children's Hunter Finals
Southeast Adult Hunter Finals
Southeast 2'6" Child/Adult Hunters