AIKEN, SOUTH CAROLINA - Liz Halliday-Sharp and Fernhill By Night, 16-year-old Irish Sport Horse (Radolin x Argentina XII, by Argentinus) owned by Deborah Halliday, took the lead after dressage Friday morning with a 28.7 and never looked back. After cruising around Michel Vaillancourt's show jumping course Friday evening, all that stood between the dynamite pair and the top spot on the podium was Capt. Mark Phillips's artfully designed, showcase cross-country course.
The 2200 m track featured 22 jumping efforts and an optimum time of 4:11. Liz and "Blackie" made easy work of the course in a very snappy 3:58. In addition to claiming her share of the $50,000 prize purse, Liz represented the Friends of the Animal Shelter (FOTAS) in the event's Ride for Charity and earned the organization a check for $2,500.
Hometown hero Doug Payne and his mount Vandiver, 15-year-old Trakehner (Windfall x Visions of Grandeur, by Mystic Replica xx) owned in partnership between Doug and Jessica Payne and Debi Crawley, took second place this weekend finishing on their dressage score of 30.8 and moving up from third in the show jumping phase. Back from a minor stifle issue that kept the gelding out of competition most of the past year, "Quinn" and Doug looked better than ever this weekend and earned their Ride for Charity organization, Home 4 Good Dogs a $1,500 check.
Eventing legend William Fox-Pitt made the trip from across the pond to compete in Aiken's first ever eventing showcase. Multiple time Olympic medalist for Great Britain, Fox-Pitt borrowed U.S. rider Chris Talley's top horse, Sandro’s Star, 11-year-old Oldenburg stallion (Sagnol x Poetic Patter xx, by Nostalgia’s Star xx) owned by Hannah Salazar. The gorgeous black stallion and Fox-Pitt were a crowd favorite and clinched the third place finish with a speedy 3:55 cross-country round to finish on their dressage score of 31.3. Mental Health America was the lucky third place charity and came away with a $1,000 check.
The Aiken Horse Park Foundation would like to extend its deepest thanks to everyone who came together to make this weekend possible. We firmly believe the riders, sponsors, officials, volunteers and spectators that were a part of this event are the best the industry has to offer and we are truly touched by all the effort put into making Bruce Duchossois's vision for the park and the Aiken community a reality.
The MISSION of the Aiken Horse Park Foundation is to promote Aiken’s equestrian way of life and to encourage the community’s civic, educational, and charitable endeavors.
Come join the Illinois Dressage and Combined Training Associatin (IDCTA) on February 16th, 2023 at 7 p.m. CST to hear about Abigail’s journey through her competing years, what she’s overcome, and how and what she has to share as a Sports Psychologist.Learn tools to overcome some of your anxieties and become the best you in and out of the show ring.
There was a sense of déjà vu chatting with Liz Halliday-Sharp about the superstar young Irish Sport Horse Shanroe Cooley (Dallas x Shanroe Sapphire), owned by Ocala Horse Properties, LLC. The now 8-year-old gelding was the 2021 USEA 6-Year-Old Preliminary Horse of the Year and 2021 USEA Preliminary Horse of the Year and he followed up that impressive 2021 season with an even more exciting competition year in 2022 bringing home second in his first-ever CCI3*-S followed by two victories at the level. He had a top-five finish in his first CCI3*-L across the border at Bromont and then made his way overseas to place eighth in Halliday-Sharp’s goal event for the young horse: the highly competitive FEI World Breeding Eventing Championships for Young Horses at Le Mondial du Lion D’Angers. Add up all of those super results, and it's no surprise that Shanroe Cooley was awarded two USEA leaderboard titles for the second year in a row— 2022 Intermediate Horse of the Year and 2022 USEA 7-Year-Old Intermediate Horse of the Year.
The USEA is heartbroken to hear about the loss of James “Jimmy” C. Wofford. A lifelong lover and supporter of the sport, Wofford has had an astounding influence on where eventing is today and has tirelessly supported the goals of the United States Eventing Association. He served as president of the American Horse Show Association (now U.S. Equestrian (USEF)), was the first vice-president of the U.S. Equestrian Team (USET), and served as secretary of the USCTA (now USEA). He served two terms as a member of the FEI Eventing Committee, including two years as vice chairman. In addition, he has served on numerous committees during his career.
Experience the thrill of traditional long format three-day eventing by competing in a USEA Classic Series event in 2023! The United States Eventing Association (USEA) is pleased to announce that the 2023 Classic Series calendar is now available.