Wellington, Fla. – March 28, 2019 – Competition at the Winter Equestrian Festival (WEF) is in its twelfth and final week, and on Thursday in the E.R. Mische Grand Hunter Arena the young horses wrapped up two days of competition in the Green 3’6” Hunter division. Sandra Ferrell and Sher Khan took the championship after their consistent showings throughout the division’s classes held Wednesday and Thursday.
A fairly new mount for Farrell, 10-year-old Hanoverian gelding Sher Khan was bought last year after the Platinum Performance/USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Championship in Kentucky and then campaigned at three horse shows, at two of which he earned championship honors, before heading south for the winter. With a promising future ahead of him, Sher Khan is being prepared by Farrell for his owner, Stephanie Bulger, to take over the reins.
Ferrell and Sher Khan secured their spot in the winner’s circle thanks in part to their victory in the stake round Thursday with a score of 87. Sher Khan impressed the judges both days, taking second place in one of the over fences classes, in which they scored an 86, as well as navigating to scores of 82 and 76 on Wednesday.
Taking home the reserve title was Quincy Hayes and Paisley Park, the 7-year-old Dutch Warmblood owned by Danielle Baran, who were awarded third in the under saddle and earned a spot in the top three in two over fences rounds with scores of 87 and 85.5 to secure the reserve tricolor ribbon.
Competition at WEF Week Twelve continues through Sunday, March 31. The $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby is set to take place Saturday and Sunday on the stadium field at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival showgrounds, with the first round kicking off Saturday at 12 p.m.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Sandra Ferrell – Green 3’6” division champion
On Sher Khan:
“We purchased him last year at the end of Green Incentive finals. He came from Katie Boone in Texas. We really only got to show him two or three times last year; we did Maryland Horse & Pony, Capital Challenge, and then Harrisburg, and he was champion at two of those shows. So we were feeling pretty confident that we had made a good choice, and feeling like he was going to be good. He has so much scope and ability, which is lovely because he gets to canter so slowly around the ring and still jumps high and beautiful. It’s amazing how slow he can go and jump so high with such ease. You don’t ever have to worry about a whole lot of things, he’s a brave horse who has nice lead changes, and he’s fun to ride. You get to the jump and he never wavers left or right, he takes off, bascules, and lands all on the same track at every jump. It’s such a nice change from having to correct them one way or the other usually.”
On the plans for Sher Khan:
“He is for Stephanie Bulger, she has four horses now. I just ride them to prepare them for her and he is the newest of the bunch. We are going to stay here a few more weeks since it is still cold at home. They will have a week off and probably do one more show and then be done until Upperville [Colt & Horse Show]. Unfortunately, we can’t do Devon as [Stephanie’s] father is judging, so they will go to Virginia instead. I think we will start to do the derbies a little, maybe at Upperville as the ring is so beautiful, and it’s not too overwhelming there.”