Las Vegas—Nov. 16, 2019—Featuring competition from 14 USHJA Affiliate Organizations across nine different states, the USHJA Affiliate Hunter 2' and 2'6" Championships wrapped up Friday, as well as the USEF/USHJA National Jumper Championships with the conclusion of the 1.10m Children's and Adult Amateur, 1.20m Junior and Amateur, and 1.30m Junior/Amateur Divisions. Juniors and Amateurs concluded the evening with the $25,000 Junior/Amateur National Hunter Derby.
Riders from USHJA Affiliate organizations the Interscholastic Equestrian Association and the Los Angeles Hunter Jumper Association took home top honors in the one-of-a-kind USHJA Affiliate Hunter 2' and 2'6" Championships. Photos: Louise Taylor and Tori Bilas for USHJA
USHJA Affiliate Hunter 2' Championship
Ashley Young, 15, of Clovis, California, captured the USHJA Affiliate Hunter 2' Championship aboard Racketeer, owned by Katie Flannigan. Young, riding for USHJA Affiliate the Interscholastic Equestrian Association, had top finishes in all four of the Affiliate Hunter 2' classes including a win over fences. Taking home the Reserve Championship aboard Stanley Cup was Ellen Brown, of Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada, riding for USHJA Affiliate organization the Oregon Hunter Jumper Association.
USHJA Affiliate Hunter 2'6" Championship
Winning three of the four USHJA Affiliate Hunter 2'6" classes and the title of Champion was Joann Niffenegger, of Corona, California, representing USHJA Affiliate the Los Angeles Hunter Jumper Association. Niffenegger, riding her own Notorious, also received the USHJA 2'6" Affiliate Championship Perpetual Trophy, sponsored by the USHJA Executive Director.
Earning the USHJA Affiliate Hunter 2'6" Reserve Championship was Heidi Kane, of Coronoa Del Mar, California, aboard her own Pirouette. Kane rode for the USHJA Affiliate the Orange County Hunter Jumper Association.
Capping off a stellar two weeks, Skylar Wireman captured the USEF/USHJA 1.30m Junior/Amateur Jumper National Championship. Photo: Tricia Booker/USHJA
USEF/USHJA 1.10m Children's Jumper Championship
Portya Muenke, of Boulder, Colorado, and her own Eurohill's Alcatraz claimed the USEF/USHJA 1.10m Children's Jumper Championship title, as well as the division's Leading Owner title and placed first in the $10,000 division Grand Prix. As such, der trainer, Mark Mead, earned the Leading Trainer title. The Reserve Championship went to Annabella Harold, of Mundelein, Illinois, riding her own Upsilos Vida.
USEF/USHJA 1.10m Adult Amateur Jumper Championship
Riding to the top of the 1.10m Adult Amateur Jumper Championship was Catherine Brock, of Innsbrook, Missouri, on her own Bullit. Brock, trained by Kris Cheyne, also took home the blue ribbon in the $10,000 Grand Prix and the Leading Owner title, while Cheyne as her trainer earned the Leading Trainer title. Brenna McGovern, of San Luis Obispo, California, claimed the Reserve on her own Grey Goose.
USEF/USHJA 1.20m Junior Jumper Championship
After much success in hunter, jumper and equitation divisions in last year's inaugural Championship, Elisa Broz, of Freedom, California, returned to Las Vegas and claimed the 1.20m Junior Jumper Championship aboard Constance Broz's Colorado. Ava K. Myers, of San Antonio, Texas, rode to the Reserve Championship title and the win in the $10,000 Grand Prix.
Constance Broz was awarded the Leading Owner title, as owner of Colorado, and Cassie Belmont earned the Leading Trainer title as Broz's trainer.
USEF/USHJA 1.20m Amateur Jumper Championship
Traveling from Arlington, Washington, Olivia Hernandez and her own Parees Horsenaes earned top honors in the 1.20m Junior division, earning the division Championship and first place in the $10,000 Grand Prix. She also earned the Leading Owner title and her trainer, Vinton Karrasch, earned the Leading Trainer title. Jayme Omand, of Sacramento, California, rode her own Zador to a Reserve Championship finish.
USEF/USHJA 1.30m Junior/Amateur Jumper Championship
Fresh off a second-place finish at the Lindsay Maxwell Charitable Fund/USHJA Emerging Athletes Program National Training Session at the University of Findlay (Ohio) last week, Skylar Wireman, of Bonsall, California, continued her success on the West Coast earning the Champion title of the 1.30m Junior/Amateur Jumper division. Her trainer, Lisa Halterman, earned the Leading Trainer title while Shayne Wireman earned the Leading Owner title as owner of Wireman's mount, Avalon.
After a first-place finish in the $10,000 Grand Prix, Trent McGee, of Granada Hills, California, piloted his own Boucherom to the Reserve Championship title.
$25,000 Junior/Amateur USHJA National Hunter Derby
Juniors and Amateurs took the spotlight Friday evening in the $25,000 Junior/Amateur USHJA National Hunter Derby in the South Point Arena. Taking home top honors was Augusta Iwasaki, of Calabasas, California, whose consistent scores of 89 in the Classic Hunter round and 89 in the Handy round secured her win aboard Iwasaki & Reilly's Illusion. Hot on her heels heels was Ariana Marnell, of Las Vegas, Nevada, aboard Marnell Sport Horses' aptly named Casino Cash. Marnell's impressive score of 91 in the Classic round shot her to the lead, and she secured her Reserve-place finish with an 83 in the Handy.
Free Educational Opportunities
In addition to competitive opportunities, free educational sessions hosted by the USHJA took place Thursday and Friday, including an interactive and engaging session with renowned sports psychologist Mario Soto, and a course walk of Friday’s $25,000 Junior/Amateur USHJA National Hunter Derby. A Judge with the Judge clinic will take place during Round 2 of the WCE Finals on Saturday at approximately 3 p.m. in the VIP Cinch Saloon, and will also be free and open to the public. Competitors that have placed in the top three in an AON/USHJA National Championship class will be invited to attend a course walk of the $100,000 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup Las Vegas Grand Prix, Saturday night.
USEF Network is hosting wall-to-wall coverage of the AON/USHJA National Championships. Check out all the details here:
The USHJA extends special thanks to presenting sponsor AON with Great American Insurance Group; USHJA official sponsors Charles Owen, CWD, Parlanti and Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital; award sponsors Essex Classics, FITS, Prize Possessions, Schneider’s, Shapley’s, SmartPak and State Line Tack; Championship competition manager Pat Boyle, and Stephanie Lightner and the entire Las Vegas National and Blenheim EquiSports team.
For more information about the AON/USHJA National Championships, visit ushja.org/NationalChampionships.
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About the U.S. Hunter Jumper Association
The United States Hunter Jumper Association, as the official hunter/jumper affiliate of the United States Equestrian Federation, is a competition-based sport organization that serves our members through educational programs, awards and recognition, communication and rules. We provide a wide array of programs for all hunter/jumper levels, and we are mindful of the well-being of our equine partners. Additionally, we are committed to preserving the history of our sport and through our Foundation we support charitable and benevolent services. Learn more at ushja.org.