Martha Ingram and Fonteyn. Photo: Sportfot
Wellington, Fla. – Feb. 17, 2017 – Martha Ingram of Nashville, Tennessee, topped the Adequan® Amateur-Owner Hunter 18–35 3’3″ division aboard Fonteyn, owned by John and Stephanie Ingram, LLC. Ingram and the 2004 German Sport Horse mare clinched the championship title by winning all three over fences classes and placing third under saddle.
“She’s amazing!” Ingram said of the mare that formerly evented under the name RF Amber Eyes. “We’ve had her for about three years. She’s so sweet, spunky and just wants to do everything right.”
Ingram commutes to WEF from Furman University and considers WCHR week one of her favorite weeks.
“The rounds take a little longer because the International [Arena] is so big,” she explained. “You go in and see yourself on the screen, which is weird, but it’s an awesome feeling.”
Lindsay Maxwell captured the reserve tricolor ribbon. The rider from Beverly Hills, California, piloted her own coming 11-year-old gelding, Kingston, to a win under saddle as well as second and two third place finishes over fences.
Arriana Boardman of New York, New York, rode her own Adelina to win the championship in the Osphos® Amateur-Owner Hunter 3’3″ 36 & Over division. Adelina, a 2008 Westfalen mare, formerly competed in the jumpers before being purchased by Boardman. The pair won two over fences classes, earned third place in the handy round and fourth under saddle.
“She didn’t know anything about the hunters,” Boardman explained. “I was drawn to her intent expression and incredible jump. She’s so smart that she picked [the hunters] up very quickly. It just gets better and better with her.”
With wins in the under saddle and handy round, Becky Gochman of Palm Beach, Florida, secured the reserve title aboard Last Man Darling, an 11-year-old Mecklenburg gelding owned by Gochman Sport Horses, LLC.
The UHealth Junior Hunter 3’3″ division saw 46 competitors and was awarded in a California Split. Caroline Ratigan of Berwyn, Pennsylvania, and Elly Ficca of Charlotte, North Carolina, were both named champions of the division. Ratigan rode her own Trust to win the under saddle and an over fences class, while also collecting a fourth place ribbon in the handy round.
“I’ve been riding him for about a year,” said Ratigan of her 2008 Oldenburg gelding by Linton. “He’s incredible. At first, he didn’t have a lot of personality, but now it’s coming out. Hopefully, I can keep him forever.”
Ficca and Quatrain, owned by Laura Critz, won two over fences classes to earn the championship award. The pair also won tricolor ribbons in the division during weeks one and four of WEF. Ficca counted on two hands the number of shows she’s done with the 13-year-old gelding by Quatro.
“He’s really brave,” Ficca said of her mount. “Showing in the International Arena was pretty scary and intimidating. The jumps are really full. The horses look at them more and jump bigger over them.”
Ficca shared her trainer, Jack Towell’s, final words before entering the arena saying, “Jack always says that I have a good eye, and he tells me to trust it.”
Week Six of the 2017 Winter Equestrian Festival continues on Saturday with more hunter and jumper action on both sides of the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center. The $100,000 USHJA/WCHR Peter Wetherill Hunter Spectacular is the highlight event in the International Arena on Saturday night. For more information and full results, please visit www.PBIEC.com.