By Tatum Mitchell
A family affair: Annabelle Brown and Casper followed in each of their mother’s footsteps to take home the Young Hunter Under Saddle win at the 2022 Devon Horse Show. In 2013, Annabelle’s mother, Brooke Brown rode Casper’s mother, Florenzia to the win in the same class.
Brooke has been a professional since she was 20 years old and runs Brownstone Farm with her husband in Pennsylvania.
As the sun reflected off the light-colored footing at Devon on what was a particularly sunny day, Annabelle was warming up and having trouble adjusting to the brightness. Her father rushed to CVS as quickly as he could to get her sunglasses before the class.
Brooke wears prescription sunglasses while she rides, and after looking at her win photo from nine years earlier, she and her daughter realized just how similar their photos appeared.
“[My husband] bought some sunglasses and brought them back, put them on her head, and she went into the class,” says Brooke. “We didn’t really put it together that the picture was going to match the picture from [nine] years ago, but it was pretty cool.”
Flory Abell owns Florenzia and is a part owner of Casper. Both horses were three years old when they took home Devon blue.
“Of course it went through my mind a little bit before Devon, but I didn’t want to say it out loud and […] jinx it,” says Brooke. “But both of those horses are just really beautiful, amazing movers that are also great at showing. They have such a presence, so I knew it was definitely possible.”
While the winners were being called to stand for conformation, with Annabelle and Casper in first, Abell and Brooke were standing in the same spot they were nine years ago.
For Brooke, the moment was “like a replay.”