Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 8, 2018 – The third week of Equifest at the Lamplight Equestrian Center kicked off on Wednesday, Aug. 8, with lots of action in both the hunter and jumper arenas. In the main hunter arena, Holly Shepherd and The Governor, owned by Mary Antonini, started off the Performance 3’6” Hunter division right with an early lead.
Shepherd navigated the 9-year-old gelding through two smooth over-fences rounds in order to impress the judges. In their first over-fences round, the pair was awarded the first place ribbon, and in their second round were given third place behind Shepherd’s other two mounts — MTM Making Waves also owned by Mary Antonini, and Tybee owned by Helen Brown.
Shepherd has been riding The Governor since 2017 when he was purchased from Brandy Holloway. As the gelding is an amateur horse majority of the time, Shepherd does not often have the chance to show him, but enjoys the opportunity when it presents itself. Here at Equifest, she has taken the chanceto ride The Governor as much as she can, better preparing him for successful rounds in the amateur ring. She has been happy to have his scope and natural jumping ability helping them take top placings in the division.
Ashleen Lee aboard Alina Zappone’s Blackcomb earned a second place ribbon in their first round a fourth place ribbon in their second, also putting them in a good position going into Thursday’s competition where the division champion will be crowned.
In the Green 3’6” Hunter division earlier in the day, Shepherd also had a good start with Jerez Mail, the gelding owned by Micaela Kennedy. The pair earned first place in both of their over-fences rounds, as well as second place in the under-saddle. Kathleen Caya and her own Zorro were not far behind Shepherd, taking second place in both of their over fences rounds, and third place in the under saddle. The division will wrap up tomorrow, Aug. 9, naming the champion and reserve champion.
Competition will resume at the Lamplight Equestrian Center Thursday, Aug. 9, at 8 a.m. Still to come this week, the $5,000 Open Welcome will kick-off at 4 p.m. in the Grand Prix Arena, and the $25,000 Welcome Grand Prix will take place at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 11.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Holly Shepherd – Performance 3’6” Hunter Division leader
On The Governor:
“I don’t get to show him very often, he is an amateur horse that we bought from Brandy Holloway last year — I’m prepping him for the ring. I love riding him, he’s super scopey and an awesome jumper.”
On her rounds:
“He felt really good in both rounds today, but I actually think he went better in the second. So did my other horses, but I thought he did really good. He was great about jumping the jumps and really easy to ride. He’s a lot of fun!”