United States Eventing Association (USEA) members were rewarded for their hard work this year during the 2015 Awards Luncheon. MC’d by the legendary Jimmy Wofford, the year-end awards presentation is one of the most anticipated events of the USEA Annual Meeting and Convention as Eventers cheer on themselves and their friends for all of their accomplishments throughout the year.
The presentation began with the SmartPak Equine USEA Classic Series Sweepstakes, sponsored by SmarkPak Equine and Stackhouse Saddles. The winner of the Training Three-Day Sweepstakes was Sophie Tice from Danville, Ca riding Mojo, and the winner of the Novice Three-Day Event Sweepstakes is Nancy Elberty from Lexington, Ky riding Princess B. Tice received a year’s supply of SmartPak supplements and a custom fitted Stackhouse Saddle, and Elberty received a year’s supply of SmartPak supplements.
Roy Burek then presented the Charles Owen Technical Merit Award. Created to encourage safe cross-country riding at the Training level, the results from 10 horse trials around the country are used to select the highest scoring junior and highest scoring adult amateur, who are each awarded a voucher toward a Charles Owen helmet. Katherine DeLaney was the highest scoring junior, and Lisa Hannan was the highest scoring adult amateur.
USEA CEO Jo Whitehouse recognized the winners of the Worth the Trust Scholarships. This scholarship provides financial assistance for amateurs to hone their horsemanship skills training with the country’s top competitors in the sport. Nita Sanfilippo won the young adult amateur scholarship, and Ashley Armijo won the adult amateur scholarship.
The Christine E. Stafford Eventing Groom Award went to Shannon McCormick, who is an integral component to Tamra Smith’s Next Level Eventing.
Melissa Fox was recognized as the winner of the Dover Saddlery Eventing Challenge, which acknowledges the success of the adult amateur 22 years of age and older. Fox rides Diamond Legacy, a 16-year-old Thoroughbred. Fox is also the Adult Amateur Training Rider of the year.
The luncheon next moved onto the USEA Leaderboard of Champions, presented by Bit of Britain. The leaderboard recognizes many divisions within the levels from Beginner Novice up through the Advanced level. The USEA is always honored to award these hardworking riders and horses. Click here for the complete leaderboard.
The Vintage Cup acknowledges a USEA member who continues to actively compete at 60 years of age or older. The USEA was proud to present the 2015 Vintage Cup to Jean Gore of Baltimore, Md.
Melissa Baumann, a 15-year-old from Area I, received the Courtney Reeves Memorial Trophy as a young individual who exemplifies the spirit of our sport.
The Andrew H. Popiel Memorial Trophy was given by the Popiel Family of the Trojan Horse Horse Trials to acknowledge a special Event organizer and their commitment to the sport. The trophy was presented to Kyra Stuart and Heidi Vahue of Stuart Horse Trials. We want to thank these ladies for their dedication to the sport and for 26 great years of competition at Stuart Horse Trials.
Laura Powell from Davis, Ca received the Cornerstone Instructor’s Award for her dedication to educating Eventers.
The Ironmaster Trophy, presented by Helen Ayer on behalf of Neil Ayer and his mount Ironmaster, recognizes the individual that exemplifies fortitude and courage in the sport of Eventing, and this year’s recipient is Amy Barrington.
The Governor’s Cup Appreciation Awards went to Tom Angle, Jerri Lance, Marilyn Payne, Seema Sonnad, Sheila Strickler and Dr. Donald Trotter. The USEA is made better by the dedication and sacrifice of these individuals.
The Wofford Cup was awarded to Bea and Derek di Grazia from Carmel Valley, Ca.
Caroline Martin was named the Overall Young Rider for the fourth year in a row, setting a new record for this category. In recognition of this, Martin received the Linda Moore Trophy. Arden Wildasin, although not present, received the Col. Allen D. Smith Memorial Trophy for being the Overall Adult Amateur of the year, which is sponsored by Stackhouse Saddles. The Essie Perkins Trophy was given to The Overall Lady Rider, which is sponsored by Devoucoux. This year’s overall lady rider was Marilyn Little. Buck Davidson was named the 2015 Overall Rider of the Year, which is sponsored by World Equestrian Brands.
The Overall Pony of the Year BeauJeste, received the Teodore O’Connor Trophy, sponsored by Point Two Air Jackets. BeauJeste, owned by Olivia Hayes, is a 10-year-old Welsh gelding by Wicket Court and out of Mine forever. Meadowbrook’s Scarlett receives the Frolicsome Trophy for being the Overall Mare of the Year, awarded by Devoucoux. Meadowbrook’s Scarlett is an 8-year-old Thoroughbred, owned by Marie Le Menestrel and ridden by Lauren Kieffer. The USEA was pleased to announce a new overall category to honor stallions competing in Eventing. Halimey was the Overall Stallion of the Year, receiving the Windfall Trophy, which was presented by Timothy Holekamp and Christine Turner. Lastly, the 2015 Horse of the Year and the Casar Trophy went to Mai Baum, who is owned by Alexandra and Ellen Ahearn and Eric Markell. Mai Baum is a 9-year-old German Sport Horse gelding by Loredano and out of Ramira. He is ridden by Tamra Smith.
Penny and Brian Ross were presented with the USEA President’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
Joanie Morris, the USEF Managing Director for Eventing took a few moments to thank the owners of the horses who earned medals at U.S. team Events this year including the Pan American Games, Aachen and Boekelo.
The Connaught Grant was awarded for the first time this year as well. This grant was announced at the last Annual Meeting and Convention and is designed for a horse competing at the CCI1* or CCI2* level who shows potential to one day be on the U.S. Team. The first winner of the grant was presented to Charlie Tango, ridden by Heather Morris and owned by the Team Express, LLC Syndicate. Sarah and Jerome Broussard presented Kurt Martin with the Rebecca Broussard National Developing Rider Grand and presented Tamra Smith with the Rebecca Broussard International Developing Rider Grant. Jenny Caras also won the Essex Grant.
The USEA would like to thank the members who joined us in Washington D.C. for a wonderful luncheon, and we look forward to honoring our Hall of Fame Inductees tomorrow evening.