Abby Steller, Avery Glynn, and Juliette Joseph Prove Consistency is Key in the 2019 CPHA Foundation Equitation Championships

Abby Steller and Cantuccini

Del Mar, CA – August 26, 2019 – Medal Final season signals the end of summer and the beginning of fall and this weekend 113 equestrians in three age sections were tested in the equitation arena. When competing in theCalifornia Professional Horsemen’s Association Foundation Equitation Championships, the equitation tests are uniquely built into the two rounds. Those who had put in extra hours with the counter-canter had an edge throughout the Championships, held August 24-25, at the Showpark Summer Classic at the Del Mar Horse Park.

The forty-five starters in the 21 & Under division, held on the expansive grass Grand Prix field, rode challenging tracks designed by internationally renowned course designer Guilherme Jorge. Notably the courses designed by Joe Lombardo in the smaller sand arena for the 14 & under and 22 & over divisions were no less demanding. Both designers worked with judges Bobbie Reber and Robert Robold on day one, while Reber and Mark Jungherr worked together on day two, to establish the tests asked within the track. Some of the questions asked included a halt at a designated spot in the arena, trot jumps and demonstrating the counter lead through a walk transition.

Adult rider Abby Steller topped an eight rider work-off in the 22 & over section to earn her first medal final victory. Last week’s CPHA Junior Medal Final champion Avery Glynn led by six points when five horse and rider combinations from the 14 & Under section headed into the work-off. With another beautiful performance in the work-off, Glynn sealed a CPHA win for the second weekend in a row. On the grass field, Juliette Joseph and Efendi logged their biggest victory together yet with an average of 86 points from the first two rounds and 86 points in the work-off to take the victory in the 21 & Under section.

CPHA Foundation Perpetual Trophy

Abby Steller Takes the Victory in the 22 & Over Section
Consistency was key for Amateur rider Abby Steller. Riding her own Cantuccini, her average score of 82.75 from Saturday and Sunday put her in second place going into the work-off for her division. Just two points behind the leader, Belle Calkin, Steller stayed calm, cool, and collected throughout the three phases of medal final competition to finish on top.

The work-off track proved to be technical for the eight adult riders who having scored an average score of 80 points or higher from the first two phases of competition, returned for final testing. As can happen when the pressure is on, positions shifted and Steller’s choices in the work-off gave her an edge.
When asked about the work-off round, Steller noted, “I knew that making the inside turn in the rollback turn wasn’t an option for me. Going around was the best option for ‘Pasta’,” she said. 

A newlywed, Steller is having a stellar year. “This is my first major win ever – it doesn’t feel real. It is an honor to compete with such amazing ladies here in this class.”

Jayme Omand and Cintas

Jayme Omand came into the work-off in the third spot, but a score of 79 in the work-off moved her into the reserve championship position. Saturday’s leader Belle Calkin moved into the third spot with a total of 155.75 after all three rounds of competition.

As the 22 & Over Champion, Steller went home with a cooler, the Victor Hugo Memorial Trophy, and other prizes.

1. Cantuccini – Abby Steller – James Hagman – 82.75/78 2. Cintas – Jayme Omand – Kelly Van Vleck – 80.5/79 3. Davinci’s Bella Forte – Belle Calkin – Joe Thorpe – 84.75/71

Young champion Avery Glynn is Two for Two in the CPHA Medal Finals
Returning for the work-off with an average of 87 and sitting in the lead by six points, fourteen-year-old Glynn impressed the judges with yet another smooth round in the work-off, and the highest score for the win.

In regards to the work-off round, Glynn was feeling confident. “I knew that I had a strong lead heading into the third round, so I was just looking to have another consistent round to keep the lead.” 

Avery Glynn and Cocon 4

Looking forward, Glynn is excited about continuing in the equitation with her trusty partner, Cocon 4 (‘Calle’), and the junior hunters with King of Hearts. “I am so grateful to my amazing trainers at Elvenstar and my parents who have made this happen,” she said. “And to Calle – she is the best teammate I could ask for.”

As the CPHA Foundation 14 & Under Champion, Glynn earned the opportunity to add her name to the perpetual trophy, sponsored by Grand Prix legend Hap Hansen, who was on hand to present.

Gable Gering and Decklin

Twelve-year-old Gable Gering was a close contender with a two-round average of 81 and an 81 work-off score to earn the Reserve Championship. Coming into the work-off in fifth place, Katalina Rickard rode beautifully to move into third place overall.

1. Cocon 4 – Avery Glynn – Elvenstar/Sonoma Valley Stables – 87/85 2. Decklin – Gable Gering – Archie Cox – 81/81 3. Lost in Blue – Katalina Rickard – Kate Considine – 80.5/79

Juliette Joseph Tops the 21 & Under Section
After a gorgeous first round on Saturday that topped the class, Juliette Joseph and Efendi kept their composure and held their lead throughout the remainder of the competition. WIth a solid average of 86 and a score of 86 in the work-off, the pair galloped away with the victory, a plethora of prizes, and her name on the Barbara Worth Oakford Perpetual Trophy, sponsored by Hester Equestrian.

The top four riders were asked to return for the challenging work-off round. The test included cantering to a line up the grass berm, demonstrating two simple changes of lead in between the two jumps, with not much distance to get the job done, as well as hand galloping a fence.

Juliette Joseph and Efendi

Needing to know your track down to the stride, Joseph had a plan. “The work-off course was technical, and I knew there was not much room between the line up on the hill, so I tried to find a balanced distance going into the line to give myself more room,” she noted.

Efendi is a fairly new ride for Joseph, but the two have become a tremendous team already. “I am so grateful for the opportunity to ride a horse like Efendi. Thank you to the entire Citrus Hill team and my dad for making all of this possible.”

Sophie Bluhm and Quadro D’Ag

Reserve Champion Sophie Bluhm came into the final round with an 84 average, topped by an 81 in the work-off. Third went to Charlotte Murray, who had an 83.5 average in the first two rounds and score of 73 in the work-off.

1. Efendi – Juliette Joseph – Robyn Stiegler – 86/86 2. Quadro D’Ag – Sophie Bluhm – James Hagman – 84/81 3. Great Blue – Charlotte Murray – Jeni Brown – 83.5/73

Championship prizes include a ribbon, rider and horse sash, perpetual and keeper trophy, flowers, a medal, cooler, an embroidered saddle pad, a stall plaque, baseball cap, and a pair of DeNiro Salento Boots, with the champion trainers also receiving a stall plaque. Reserve and third place finishers were decorated with a ribbon, rider and horse sash, flowers, a medal, a cooler, and a baseball cap. Fourth through tenth place finishers received a ribbon, medal, and flowers.

Awards were donated by the generous sponsors, DaMoor’s Tack & Feed andOutdoor Outfitters.

California Professional Horsemen’s Association president Jeni Brown was thrilled with another strong turn-out for these West Coast competitive finals that enable the regional riders to be challenged without having to travel back east.

Photos by Captured Moments Photography

CPHA Foundation Equitation Championship Final, 22 & Over
Placing – Entry Number – Horse – -Rider – Trainer – Score
1. 270 – Cantuccini – Abby Steller – James Hagman – 82.75/78
2. 472 – Cintas – Jayme Omand – Kelly Van Vleck – 80.5/79
3. 464 – Davinci’s Bella Forte – Belle Calkin – Joe Thorpe – 84.75/71
4. 695 – Big Picture – Lindsey Schiefelbein – Michael Croopnick – 81.375/74
5. 475 – Just Because – Kathy Nolan – Kelly Van Vleck – 82.25/73
6. 470 – Figaro – Kaitlin Perry – Kelly Van Vleck – 80/75
7. 282 – Elvenstar Hans – Shea Ward – James Hagman – 80.25/70
8. 106 – Magic Blue – Maia Aerni – Susan Artes – 80.75/69
9. 367 – Salud – Emily Goldberg – Victoria LaCagnina – 79.25
10. 151 – Uptick – Kim Cheikha – Durango Farms – 78.25

CPHA Foundation Equitation Championship Final, 14 & Under
Placing – Entry Number – Horse – -Rider – Trainer – Score

1. 670 – Cocon 4 – Avery Glynn – Elvenstar/Sonoma Valley Stables – 87/85
2. 634 – Decklin – Gable Gering – Archie Cox – 81/81
3. 171 – Lost in Blue – Katalina Rickard – Kate Considine – 80.5/79
4. 246 – Lyla – Naomi Wegner – Nancy Frost – 82.5/60
5. 492 – Venice – Shiloh Roseboom – Christa Endicott – 80.75/40
6. 148 – Outkast – Morgan Wiebe – Durango Farms – 79
7. 618 – Hot Pants – Skylar Wireman – Lisa Halterman/Shane Wireman – 78.5
8. 221 – Sandor Z – Isabella Holway – Emily Esau Williams – 77
9. 119 – Carrico Sun – Bella Primavera – Cassie Belmont/Alison Sherred – 76.75
10. 259 – Cenzus – Kylie Eynon– Devon Gibson – 75
CPHA Foundation Equitation Championship Final, 21 & Under
Placing – Entry Number – Horse – -Rider – Trainer – Score

1. 680 – Efendi – Juliette Joseph – Robyn Stiegler – 86/86
2. 281 – Quadro D’Ag – Sophie Bluhm – James Hagman – 84/81
3. 128 – Great Blue – Charlotte Murray – Jeni Brown – 83.5/73
4. 554 – Lausbub – Sophia Davies – Matt Sereni – 83.5/60
5. 441 – Khaled – Payton Potter – Leslie Steele – 82.75
6. 134 – How Sweet is it – Sierra Geisler – Wendy Brownlee – 82.625
7. 153 – Quinten F – Jessie Rechs – Durango Farms – 82.375
8. 480 – Acortair – Breanna Bunevacz – Tasha Visokay – 82.25
9. 137 – Chacaquido – Alison Raich – Lesley Bulecheck – 80.25
10. 561 – Wodan – Alli Christy – Patty Ball – 79.875