Scott Stewart piloted Gochman Sport Horses LLC’s Catch Me to a perfect score of 100 and the championship ribbon Thursday in the High Performance Hunters, sponsored by Antarès Sellier France.
“That horse has really come close to getting a 100 a lot of times. We have gotten a lot of high 90s before,” recalled Stewart. “I think today’s course really suited him and suited the possibility to get that score. Getting a 100 was always in the back of my mind with him. Certainly that was on my mind today after he went really well in the first class. He is just so nice. He can go around with a loop in the rein and let you gallop around the course.”
The duo has always been a combination to watch, having earned many top ribbons, including winning the $100,000 WCHR/USHJA Peter Wetherill Palm Beach Hunter Spectacular in both 2016 and 2017 at WEF. The 14-year-old Holsteiner gelding by Casiro I was also named USEF’s National Horse of the Year in 2016.
“I’ve had a lot of really nice rounds, and lots of nice rounds on him that I thought maybe could have been close,” said Stewart. “Certainly when I left the ring I thought maybe it could happen, but I was in shock when it actually happened! I think that horse really deserves it. He tries 100% every time he goes in.”
Scott Stewart and Love Note Receive Top Honors in the Green Hunter 3’9”
Stewart also rode to the tricolor ribbon in the Green Hunter 3’9”, sponsored by Equine Tack & Nutritionals. He and Richard Prant’s Love Note earned the championship title, receiving a first, two seconds, third, and fourth place ribbons.
Stewart has had the ride on Love Note for three years. The pair has shown twice this season and has taken home a championship ribbon both times.
“I showed him as a first year horse pretty regularly, and last year we showed a couple times and he was very good,” Stewart explained. “He primarily does the Amateur-Owner Hunters with his owner, Nancy Hooker.”
Stewart and Love Note consistently placed at the top of the class both days of competition in the E.R. Mische Grand Hunter Ring. The pair’s rhythmic pace earned them a score of 85 on the second day to win an over fences class.
“He was great. He got to gallop around nicely,” Stewart said of the eight-year-old Westphalian gelding by Kalaska De Semilly. “I know him very well, and I can trust him because he is so brave.”
While Stewart is gearing up for World Championship Hunter Rider (WCHR) Week 6, Love Note will mainly be focused on showing with Hooker and staying consistent in the Green Hunter 3’9”. “Since he is so competitive in this division, we will continue to show him in it and hopefully qualify for Devon,” commented Stewart.
Penny Lombardo, of Loxahatchee, FL, rode Charismo to reserve champion. Lombardo and Joyce L. Kutcher’s Charismo earned a first, second, third, fourth, and fifth places in the Green Hunter 3’9” division.