Traverse City, Mich. – July 24, 2021 – The penultimate day of hunter competition in Week III of the Great Lakes Equestrian Festival (GLEF), presented by CaptiveOne Advisors, began on Saturday, hosting many amateur and junior riders in the Polk Family Hunter Ring and closing out their respective divisions. Finishing out the Amateur-Owner Hunter 3’3” Divisions was the $1,000 Clouds End Farm Amateur-Owner Hunter 3’3” Hunter Classic, and Hallie Williams and Beesknees took top honors in the combined age division classic.
Williams and her own 14-year-old Warmblood gelding impressed the judges over the two over fences rounds in the classic. The pair competed in the Amateur-Owner Hunter 3’3” 18-35 section of the Amateur-Owner divisions and captured a first round score of 84 on the opening day of competition. In the second round of the classic on Saturday, the combination effortlessly went around the 9-obstacle course set by Joseph Carnicom and earned an impressive score of 87. Their score was also the highest given in the second round of the classic and ultimately helped them claim the top honors with 171 as their total classic score.
Second place in the $1,000 Clouds End Farm Amateur-Owner Hunter 3’3” Classic went to Caristo and Meghan Rohrbaugh-Bear. Rohrbaugh-Bear and her 8-year-old Holsteiner gelding came in with a day one classic round score of an 82. They then went on to lay down a beautiful second round to score an 85 on day two, which was also the second highest score given Saturday. They ended up with a total classic score of 167.
Rounding out the top three was Treesdale Farms’ 15-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, Barilla, and Kirstie Lynn Dobbs. After tying with Rohrbaugh-Bear with a score of 82 on the first day, the pair came back to the Polk Family Hunter Ring on Saturday to lay down a score of 84 for a total of 166 and helped garner them the third place ribbon.
Also crowned on Saturday afternoon was the Amateur-Owner Hunter 3’3” 18-35 Division. Rohrbaugh-Bear claimed the championship title with her other mount, Waverly. Just recently having purchased Waverly in June from Holly Orlando and Jenny Dunion, this was the pair’s first time showing in the Amateur-Owner division and seemed to be a smashing success. Over Friday and Saturday they were able to capture two firsts over fences and the win in the undersaddle.
Hunter competition in Week III will conclude on Sunday with the $5,000 Traverse City Derby starting at 1:30 p.m. in the Polk Family Hunter Ring.
FROM THE WINNERS CIRCLE
Meghan Rohrbaugh-Bear – AO Hunter 3’3” 35+ Division Champion
“She is just so sweet and so easy. It’s just her way, all you have to do is sit there. We tried her several months ago and just loved her but the timing wasn’t quite right. We kept waiting and we were able to get her in June. This is our first time doing the Amateurs together. Our first show was last week, we did the Adult Hunters and she was champion then, and this is our first week doing the Amateurs. My trainer said, ‘hey, we have this horse and maybe you’d like to try it’ because I had been looking for something a little smaller because I’m only 5’3”. We went and tried her, and as soon as I walked into the barn she was just really sweet and lovable. I just knew, and the first time I rode her it was a perfect match.”
On her round:
“She is always looking for the next jump, which makes it really easy. I was really nervous because I had never done a handy [round] with her or a trot jump, but she makes it easy because she is always looking for the next jump and cantering up to it. That really helps.
“Poppy is only eight years old and my daughter is only six, so she says she can be her small junior hunter someday! We purchased Poppy from Holly Orlando and Jenny Dunion of Evermore and they have been so supportive in helping me with Poppy.”
On showing at Traverse City Horse Shows:
“We came here last year for the first time because of Covid, so we ended up trying it out. We just love it. How can you show anywhere else where it rains like it rained today, and the footing is still perfect. The footing in the schooling area is perfect and the footing in the ring is perfect. They do a great job communicating and we love it. We are going to come back in September.”
On her career and future plans with Waverly:
“My husband and I have a catering business and I also work for my family’s architectural firm, so I do a little bit of everything. I ride at Shadow Ridge with Sam Schaefer, Kate Conover and Stacey Weiss. We are taking it easy this year because we got [Waverly] at a weird time of the year, but hoping to have her at the Green Hunter Incentive Finals in Kentucky next month where I will watch and clap. We’ll come back here in September, and our big goal for next year is to do Devon in the Amateurs.”