IEHJA Celebrates Riders at the 2023 Fall Festival Year End Show

by Patti Schooley • photos by Tina Fitch Photography & Nicole Lear-Helms

Galway Downs again provided the backdrop for IEHJA’s Fall Festival. The facilities’ two main arenas were festively decorated in fall colors with pumpkins and scarecrows and even a fuzzy brown horse decorating the jump standards. The riot of color, the perfect fall weather, and the camaraderie of the riders made for a special three days of competition.

Competition kicked off on Friday with both hunters and jumpers competing in the first of their division classes. Course designer Kelly James asked riders to solve various problems from trot fences to changes of direction to complete stops before proceeding to the next fence in the hunter arena. Turning ability and controlled speed won the day on the jumper courses. Of course, remembering which Table (the order of jumps) applied to which jumper round was also a challenge! For the Baby Green Hunters, it was the challenge of completing the course in that smooth and measured pace so beloved by judges and audiences alike. Friday ended with both the Showdown Perpetual Medal and IEHJA’s signature Stick Horse Shenanigans class. The latter class was sponsored by Hygain Horse Feed and Supplements. Jennifer Hallett riding Portofino won the Showdown Medal.

Finly Black on Princess Whimsy.
Charlie Solt on Martini.

Saturday continued the hunter/jumper division classes with the addition of the ever-popular walk-trot and cross rail classes. Both beginner divisions are fiercely competed and are the gateway to higher level competition. Olivia Gonzales, Scarlett Koch, and Alexa Nelson competed in the walk-trot classes and were in the ribbons. The cross-rail division champion was Delaney Lightman riding April and the Reserve was Riley Day on board Lw Coc Penny 15. The open cross-rail champion was Shiney Nugget ridden by Elizabeth Healey and the reserve Morgan PF and Nicole Lear-Helms.

The Saturday schedule also included the IEHJA Hunter Derby, the Green Rider Hunter Classic, and the Stirrup Hunter Classic. Riders go all out in the elegance factor with braided manes and tails, shiny polished horses, and tack, and even a formal Shadbelly coat. Winners of these specialty classes were as follows:
• IEHJA Hunter Derby
• Jennifer Hallett/Portofino CH
• Brinley Whrli/Sir Rocco RES
• Hunter Classic
• Addison Schuld/Shadow CH
• Anatasia Miron/Primrose RES
• Green Rider Hunter Classic
• Olivia Stepien/flight Ops
• Makensie Dabell/Top Brass

Alessa Miller on London Fog.
Enjoying the horse show..
Jennifer Hallet on Portofinow.

IEHJA Medal Finals kicked off the Sunday competition. To be eligible for the medal finals both the rider and trainer must be members of IEHJA and accumulated 10 points over the course of the IEHJA show calendar either by winning a class or by placing in multiple medal classes. Medal winners were as follows:
• Flat Medal
• Madalyn Alva/Check Me Out
• Olivia Stepien/Flight Ops
• 2’3” Medal
• Jenna Humphrey/The Only Tigger
• Olivia Stepien/Flight Ops
• 2’6” Medal
• Charlie Stolt/Martini
• Madalyn Alva/Check Me Out

Two Mini Prix classes were also pinned on Sunday with the following results:
• .80 Mini Prix
• Campbell Lear/Fergalicious
• Jessica Clark/Desilu James
• .95 Mini Prix
• Danielle Wilcox/Remarkable
• Jonique Baez/Lord Lorien

Some other notable champion and reserve champions include the following:
• Low Childrens/AA .70 jumpers
• CH Audrey De Tavis/the Devil Wears Prada
• RES Alessa Miller/London fog
• Low Schooling Jumpers
• CH Grace Vargas/Texas Dreamer
• RES Finley Black/Princess Whimsy
• Short Stirrup
• CH Addisyn Schuld/Shadow
• RES Taylor Schoessow/Dylan
• Green Rider
• CH Jenna Humphrey/The Only Tigger
• RES Olivia Stepien/Flight Ops
• Open Cross Rails
• CH Olivia Santolucito/Shiny Nugget
• RES Codie Murrill/Morgan PF
• Cross Rails
• CH Delaney Lightman/April
• RES Riley Day/LW Doc Penny 15

A complete list of Division Champions, Reserve Champions, and rider results can be found on .Congratulations to all our competitors, their families, and trainers. See you at the following upcoming IEHJA sanctioned show:
• Willowbrook Saddle Series at Willowbrook Equestrian Center February 11
• Get Away Series at Copper Meadows February 25
• Showcase Show Series at Showcase Training stables March 10

A reminder to all competitors, the IEHJA annual Awards Banquet will be held February 18th, at Santa Anita Park. Invitations are in the mail and include all ticket information or call Gretchen Clark at 909 809-0131.