United States Eventing Association (USEA) members were rewarded for their hard work this year during the 2016 Awards Ceremony. 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 Annah Yoder from Benbrook, Tx., riding Ern More Cash, and the winner of the Novice Three-Day Event Sweepstakes is Christina Schultz from San Antonio Tx., riding Alexa Dawn. Annah received a year’s supply of SmartPak supplements and a custom fitted Stackhouse Saddle, and Christina 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. Zoe Schroeder (Barrington, Ill.) was the highest scoring junior, and Julie Wheeler (Thompson, Conn.) was the highest scoring adult amateur.
Former USEA CEO and Current USEA Development Officer Jo Whitehouse presented he Christine E. Stafford Eventing Groom Award Kendyl Tracy (Aurora, Colo.). Kendyl has traveled to some of the most prestigious events around the world as head groom for Lynn Symansky including this year’s Olympic Games.
Wofford next introduces 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 2016 Vintage Cup was awarded to Jane Anderson (Moreland, Ga.). Jane was a recipient of the Worth the Trust Adult Amateur Scholarship in 2006, and is still actively competing today.
Helmut Graetz (Nicholsville, Ky.) received the Cornerstone Instructor’s Award for his dedication to the fundamentals of educating well-rounded eventers. He passed away this September at the age of 90. He was loved by many generations of riders in central Kentucky.
The Ironmaster Trophy, presented to acknowledge an individual that exemplified fortitude and courage in the sport, was awarded Christine Aytug (Gainesville, Fla.) and given by Helen Ayer on behalf of Neil Ayer and his mount Ironmaster.
The Governor’s Cup Appreciation Awards went to Sharon Anthony (Primm Springs, Tenn.), Jerome Broussard (Whitefish, Mont.), Mary Hutchins (Norwich, Vt.) and Kaiti Saunders (Arlington, Va.). The USEA is made better by the dedication and sacrifice of these individuals.
The Wofford Cup was awarded to Mary Hutchins (Norwich, Vt.).
Jenny Caras (Cartersville, Ga.) was named the Overall Young Rider and received the Linda Moore Trophy. Frankie Thieriot Stutes (Ocidental, Calif.), 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 Lauren Kieffer (Ocala, Fla.). Boyd Martin (Unionville, Pa.) was named the 2016 Overall Rider of the Year, which is sponsored by World Equestrian Brands, earning the Windy Acres Farm Trophy.
The Overall Pony of the Year Batteries Not Included, received the Teodore O’Connor Trophy, sponsored by Point Two Air Jackets. Owned by Susie Beale, Batteries Not Included is a 16-year-old pinto gelding who was ridden this year by Annabelle Kress.
Under Suspection receives the Frolicsome Trophy for being the Overall Mare of the Year, awarded by Devoucoux. Under Suspection is a 12-year-old Holsteiner mare, owned by Mary Ann Ghadban and ridden by Hanna Sue Burnett. In the second year of recognizing stallions, Halimey (Askar AA x Hamamelis Go) was again the Overall Stallion of the Year, receiving the Windfall Trophy, which was presented by Timothy Holekamp and Christine Turner. Halimey is a 10-year-old Trakehner owned by Christine Turner and ridden by Buck Davidson. Lastly, the 2015 Horse of the Year and the Casar Trophy went to Mighty Nice, who is owned by the HND Group. The 12-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding also earned an individual bronze medal at this summer’s Olympic Games with Phillip Dutton.
USEA President Diane Pitts presented Howard Simpson with the USEA President’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
Now in its 17th year, The Worth the Trust Scholarships provide financial assistance for amateurs to hone their horsemanship skills training with the country’s top competitors in the sport. Taylor Rieck (Woodville, Wis.) won the young adult amateur scholarship, and Allison Murphy (Cheyenne, Wyo.) won the adult amateur scholarship.
The Connaught Grant was awarded for the second time this year to a horse competing at the CCI* or CCI2* level who shows potential to one day be on a U.S. team. In memory of Bruch Duchossois, the grant was awarded to Stella Artois.
Joanie Morris, the USEF Managing Director for Eventing took a few moments to thank the owners of the horses who represented the United States this summer at the Rio Olympic Games.
In its second year, the Connaught Grant is designed for a horse competing at the CCI1* or CCI2* level who shows potential to one day be on the U.S. Team. It was presented to Stella Artois, ridden by Jennie Brannigan and owned by the Elsbeth Battel and Jennie Brannigan. Sarah, Rebecca and Jerome Broussard presented Mackenna Shea with the Rebecca Broussard National Developing Rider Grant and presented Jennie Brannigan with the Rebecca Broussard International Developing Rider Grant. Hallie Coon also won the Essex Grant. The Amy Tryon Grant was awarded to Madison Temkin, and the Seema Sonnad Grant was awarded to Mia Farley.
The Roger Haller Educational Fund, which was formed earlier this year in memory of Roger Haller who was a lifelong servant to the sport, awarded its first two scholarships to help continue the licensing and education of licensed officials, judges and course designers. These scholarships were given to Valerie Vizcarrondo and John Williams.
The USEA would like to thank all our members who joined us in Fort Lauderdale, Florida this weekend.