Bend, Ore.—July 31, 2019—Stephen Pellett and View Point Farm’s Camera Ready were focused on winning during the $5,000 3'6"/3'9" USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Northwest Regional Championship, on July 25 at the Oregon High Desert Classic II, taking top honors in both rounds with scores of 88 and 87 for a 175 total and the title.
Stephen Pellett and View Point Farms' Camera Ready captured the 3'6"/3'9" USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Northwest Regional Championship at Oregon High Desert Classic II. Photo: Tricia Booker/USHJA
Owned by Konny Murray of View Point Farms in Carmel Valley, California, the 9-year-old Westphalian galloped boldly and confidently around the grass ring, impressing judges Betty Oare and Jane Dow-Burt.
Murray imported the elegant gray by Cornet Obolensky from Germany four years ago, and Pellett has brought him steadily up the levels. In addition to topping the 3'6"/3'9" Regional Championship, Pellett and Camera Ready also earned the 3’9” Green Hunter championship during both weeks of Bend and won the $10,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby Week 1.
“It’s been really fun. I credit Stephen for the training and persistence,” said Murray. “He’s a lovely, talented horse, but Stephen has made him special.”
Pellett, 29, has been showing “Bubbles” for just over three years. “This is our first year doing the USHJA Green Hunter Incentive. Last week we didn’t do it, but we decided to sign up this week because of the prize money in the championship. And it worked out so far!
“I think we need more of these classes on the West Coast,” Pellett added. “It’s nice for the green horses to have a money class to do on the open days instead of waiting to do the derbies.”
For Murray, the Regional Championship was a nice bonus and reward for her faith in Bubbles and Pellett and her goal of developing a USHJA International Hunter Derby horse from scratch after she stopped riding herself.
“I’m really numb, actually,” said Murray after the awards ceremony. “This is just so rewarding.”
Owner Kathleen Waldorf, of Portland, Oregon, was also rewarded for her decision to take her Green Hunter Artistry to compete in the $5,000 3’/3’3” Green Hunter Incentive Regional Championship. John French piloted the 7-year-old, Hanoverian (by Chivas) to the tricolor.
John French and Kathleen Waldorf's Artistry, Champions of the 3'/3'3" USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Northwest Regional Championship, with competition manager Dianne Johnson. Photo: Tricia Booker/USHJA
French got the ride on the black gelding over the winter, and the pair has earned multiple championships in the 3’3” Green Hunters, from the HITS Coachella Desert Circuit in California to Thunderbird in Canada.
“I’m kind of getting him ready for her to ride as an adult amateur horse,” said French of Waldorf, who trains with Johanna Siefert, of Lionheart Training LLC in Portland. “She started doing some classes at Thunderbird on him. This championship is great for the owners and the sport. This was something she wanted to work toward, and that’s why we brought him here, so it’s good.”
French was especially pleased with Artistry’s performances in the Regional Championship, including the score of 89, which was the day’s highest.
“I was wondering with the heat and whether he would get bored, but actually he got better and better, and the 89 was in the last round,” he noted. “There was one bending line on the course that was a little tricky that some people had trouble with, but he’s easy to ride and will take a wider track or whatever you need to do to have it fit in. They were nice courses (designed by Nancy Wallis and Paul Jewell). The first round started with an oxer, so there were some different things we haven’t seen.
“I really love this horse show, and I’m glad they had this Regional Championship up here. Now that I’m from the Northwest, I don’t want to have to go down to do the one in Southern California,” he added. “Maybe some of my California horses will do that one, but it’s nice to be here and for people in the Northwest to have this championship, and, hopefully, more people will support it because it’s great money.”
This was the third of five regional championships available to USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Program participants. Remaining regional championships include: the Southwest Championship at the International Jumping Festival, September 19 in San Juan Capistrano, California; and the Central Championship at the Harvest Horse Show, October 30-November 3 in Katy, Texas.
Ahead of the annual Platinum Performance/USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Championships in Kentucky, August 13-15, 2019, the USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Program is continuing to experience growth in enrollment numbers. Currently, there are more than 600 Green Hunters enrolled in the program, which has paid out more than $3.1 million in prize money since the program's inception in 2013. In 2018, prize money for the Platinum Performance/USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Championship topped $218,000, with a percentage of enrollment fees and entry fees going towards Championship prize money again in 2019.
The USHJA extends a special thank you to the Oregon High Desert Classic for hosting the Championship.
USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Program participants can choose from one of five regional championships held across the country. Exhibitors may choose whichever regional championship they want but horses may only compete in one regional championship per year. Each regional championship is two rounds, and the combined total score for both rounds will determine the winner. Prize money is awarded through 12th place, and each championship will offer a minimum of $10,000 in prize money spread across all the sections offered. Horses must be enrolled in the program to be eligible to participate.
Learn more about the USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Program at ushja.org/GreenIncentive.
USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Northwest Championship Results
Placing - Horse - Rider - Owner
1. Artistry - John French - Kathleen Waldorf
2. Acantus - Patty Osberg - Patty Osberg
3. Kitty Hawk - John French - Gregory Schmandt
4. Winterfell - Catherine Cruger - Sonya Maxwell
5. Iron Man - Rebekah Swan - Alexandra Scates
Placing - Horse - Rider - Owner
1. Camera Ready - Stephen Pellett - View Point Farms
2. Per Se - Shelley Campf - SAS LLC
3. Casino T - John French - John French
4. Chaplin - Sara Petersen - Jan O'Brien
5. Crafted - Tara Niculescu - Capstone Equestrian LLC