Oct 14, 2021

HSH Best Kept Secret is Victorious in Dutta Corp. USEA YEH 4-Year-Old East Coast Championships

By Meagan DeLisle - USEA Staff
Caroline Martin and HSH Best Kept Secret. USEA/ Meagan DeLisle photo.

The first day of competition in the 2021 Dutta Corp. USEA Young Event Horse (YEH) East Coast Championships concluded with the crowning of the champion in the 4-year-old division. After contesting the dressage and conformation phases, Caroline Martin’s Irish Sport Horse gelding HSH Best Kept Secret (Adieu Z x Ringwood Sunny Clover) rocketed to the top of the 32 horse field following the jumping and galloping phases to earn the division champion title with a cumulative score of 90.20. It was a repeat affair for Martin, who won both the 4- and 5-year-old YEH East Coast Championships in 2020.

Caroline Martin and HSH Best Kept Secret. USEA/ Meagan DeLisle photo.

“We jokingly said he was the baby genius today,” Martin commented. “For the dressage, I got on 10 minutes before my ride and went in and he did a lovely test. I can do anything I want and he goes around like a five-star horse. So then in the jumping phase a girl hacked him up to me and I jumped two jumps and he was amazing.”

Martin and the bay Irish-bred gelding sat in second following dressage after judge Linda Zang awarded the young horse with a score of 18.08 out of a possible 20. Following the conformation phase, judged by Cathy Tucker-Slaterbeck, the pair would drop to fourth following the conformation phase but it was in the jumping test, however, that “Zante” shined. The jumping test included show jumping efforts, cross-country questions, and demonstration of the horse’s ability to gallop. Judges Phyllis Dawson and Peter Gray were impressed by the horse’s athleticism and jumping style, giving him a 9.50 for general impression and other high marks that would ultimately shift the young horse to the first place position.

Caroline Martin and HSH Best Kept Secret. USEA/ Meagan DeLisle photo.

“My business partner Kelley Hutchinson, everything goes to her credit,” Martin reflected. “She sourced the horse and called me as soon as she found him as a 3-year-old and said to me, ‘Caroline we have to buy him together. We’ve produced him slowly and he is just amazing. I just have to thank Kelley so much for finding me such quality horses and I am hopefully going to keep Zante and go all the way with him.”

Tim Bourke and Undercover Quality. USEA/ Meagan DeLisle photo.

Also repeating history was Irish event-rider Tim Bourke who copied his second-place finish in the YEH 4-year-old Championship in 2020 with a second-place finish this year aboard Lisa Takada’s Irish Sport Horse gelding Undercover Quality (Chacoa x KEC Safari). Just over a half of a point separated Undercover Quality and HSH Best Kept Secret on the leaderboard, with Bourke’s mount receiving exceptional marks for his cross-country performance and overall impression. Overall, Undercover Quality’s performances today resulted in a final score of 89.61.

Caroline Martin and Mister Chin. USEA/ Meagan DeLisle photo.

Rounding out the top three was Martin and her own Mister Chin, a KWPN gelding by Gasphair and out of Z-Retina SR. Mister Chin received high marks in the jumping phases, especially on cross-country where the young gelding showed an impressive effort over each obstacle.

The recipient of the Stillwater Farm trophy, awarded to the horse with the best gallop score at each coast’s YEH 4-year-old Championships, was HSH Best Kept Secret and Caroline Martin. This award is generously provided by Stillwater Farm and is presented in loving memory of Donald Trotter, who passed away in 2019.

Caroline Martin and HSH Crypto. Allyn Evans photo.

While it was a busy day for the 4-year-olds, the 5-year-olds kicked off their championship weekend with the dressage and conformation portion. They will conclude their competition efforts on Friday with the jumping and galloping tests. Martin’s reign over the YEH East Coast Championships continues as she and her own Irish Sport Horse gelding HSH Crypto (Cassalco x Cumano Kiss) sit in first with an overnight score of 25.84. Hot on HSH Crypto’s heels with a 25.80 is Hartwin Von Holten’s Hanoverian mare Gina (Gentleman x Ballerina) ridden by Chris Talley. Mia Farley has the ride on Karen O’Connor’s entry Invictus (Diarado x Sunset Paradise), an American Warmblood gelding who sits in third with a score of 25.64.

Helpful Links

Don't forget to follow the USEA’s event coverage on social media!

Facebook | Instagram | Twitter

About the USEA Young Event Horse Program

The Young Event Horse (YEH) Program was first established in 2004 as an eventing talent search. Much like similar programs in Europe, the YEH program was designed to identify young horses aged four and five that possess the talent and disposition to, with proper training, excel at the uppermost levels of the sport. The ultimate goal of the program is to distinguish horses with the potential to compete at the four- and five-star levels, but many fine horses that excel at the lower levels are also showcased by the program.

The YEH program provides an opportunity for breeders and owners to exhibit the potential of their young horses while encouraging the breeding and development of top event horses for the future. The program rewards horses who are educated and prepared in a correct and progressive manner. At qualifying events, youngsters complete a dressage test and a jumping/galloping/general impression phase. At Championships, young horses are also evaluated on their conformation in addition to the dressage test and jumping/galloping/general impression phase. Click here to learn more about the Young Event Horse Program.

The USEA would like to thank Bates Saddles, SmartPak, Standlee Premium Western Forage, Parker Equine Insurance, Etalon Diagnostics, and Saratoga Horseworks for sponsoring the Young Event Horse Program. Additionally, the USEA would like to thank The Dutta Corp., Title Sponsor of the Young Event Horse Championships.

Nov 28, 2021 USEA Foundation

Where are they now? The Holekamp/Turner Grant Recipients

The Holekamp/Turner Grant was founded in 2015 by Timothy and Cheryl Holekamp of New Spring Farm and Christine and T.J. Turner of Indian Creek Farm. This grant gives a USEA Young Event Horse (YEH) Championship competitor the opportunity to represent the United States at the FEI Eventing World Breeding Championships in the 7-year-old Championship (a CCIYH3*-L) at Mondial du Lion in Le Lion d’Angers, France. The intention of the grant is to further develop an upward pathway for U.S. team horses in the sport of eventing. Grant recipients who are North American bred will be awarded the full cash grant of $17,500. If the winner is an imported horse, he will be awarded $8,000.

Nov 27, 2021 Convention

World Equestrian Brands Joins as Title Sponsor of the USEA Rider of the Year Leaderboard and Contributing Sponsor of the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championships

The United States Eventing Association (USEA) is thrilled to welcome back World Equestrian Brands as the Title Sponsor of the USEA Rider of the Year Leaderboard for 2021 and 2022. This year’s USEA Rider of the Year will be honored at the 2021 USEA Year-End Awards Ceremony held during the USEA Annual Meeting & Convention on Saturday, Dec. 11 at the Hyatt Regency Albuquerque in Albuquerque, New Mexico. World Equestrian Brands will generously provide the winner with a prize of $500 in value. Next year, the USEA Rider of the Year will be recognized during the 2022 USEA Annual Meeting & Convention which will take place in Savannah, Georgia on Dec. 7-11, 2022.

Nov 27, 2021 Classic Series

Slaughter, Berry, and Shade Conclude 2021 Season with Wins in Fresno Classic Three-Day Event

What better way to draw the competition season to a close than with a win in a USEA Classic Series division? Three competitors did just that on the weekend of November 17-18 at the Fresno Horse Park in Fresno, California.

Nov 26, 2021 Convention

Rebecca Farm Returns as Gold Level Sponsor for the 2021 USEA Annual Meeting & Convention

The United States Eventing Association (USEA) is pleased to announce the renewed partnership with Rebecca Farm. Rebecca Farm will return as a Gold Level Sponsor of the 2021 USEA Annual Meeting & Convention and will be the exclusive sponsor for the Annual Meeting continental breakfast. This year’s Annual Meeting & Convention will take place at the Hyatt Regency Albuquerque in Albuquerque, New Mexico on December 9-12, 2021.

Official Corporate Sponsors of the USEA

Official Outerwear of the USEA

Official Supplement Feeding System of the USEA

Official Forage of the USEA

Official Feed of the USEA

Official Saddle of the USEA

Official Joint Therapy Treatment of the USEA

Official Equine Insurance of the USEA

Official Horse Clothing of the USEA