Dudley B. Smith Equitation Championship Returns to the Great Lake Equestrian Festival

Traverse City, Mich. – May 13, 2021 – The highly anticipated Dudley B. Smith Equitation Championship is set to return during the Great Lakes Equestrian Festival (GLEF). After a successful 2019 and 2020 championship class, the Traverse City Horse Shows (TCHS) management team is thrilled to welcome this championship equitation class back for the third year in a row. The Dudley B. Smith Equitation Championship was formed to honor Dudley B. Smith after his unexpected passing in August 2018. The class brings some of equitations brightest young stars and will be held during Week IV of the series, taking center stage in the Turtle Creek Casino and Hotel International Ring.

2020 winner Elli Yeager on Copperfield 39 with second-place finisher Sophee Steckbeck on Zapfier, Photo courtesy of Brooke Giacin

“We are excited to be able to offer this class for our equitation exhibitors,” commented Matt Morrissey, Event Director of Traverse City Horse Shows. “The class holds a special commemoration to a remarkable friend and supporter of Traverse City Horse Shows and offers a unique opportunity for equitation riders to showcase their talents here at TCHS.”

The Dudley B. Smith Equitation Championship is open to riders aged 21 years old and under who earn first, second or third place in any 3’6” equitation class, phase or overall, during the Traverse City Spring Horse Show (TCS) and GLEF. Held in the Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel International Ring, riders will be tested across two rounds of competition over derby-style fences, where the 12 best-scoring riders will be asked to return to compete in the second round to determine the champion. Additionally, the trainers of the talented top four riders will be awarded Dudley B. Smith Trainer Awards and each will receive a portion of the $10,000 trainer bonus purse.

Smith was a proud philanthropist of multiple local charities that included the Cherryland Humane Society, Northwestern Michigan College’s Museum Center, generously donated to the Munson Medical Center, and helped fund the Smith Family Breast Health Center with his wife, Barbara. His love for the arts, animals and helping those in need made Smith a devout patron to his community. Smith was also a significant supporter of the equestrian industry and an avid spectator at many equestrian competitions as a support system for his beloved granddaughter, Paige Matthies.

For more information, please visit www.traversecityhorseshows.com.