Tatum Takes Charge in Dover Saddlery/USEF Hunter Seat Medal at Desert Holiday III

Violet Tatum and Cambalache. Photo by Megan Giese

Edited Press Release

Violet Tatum is no stranger to the equitation rings in the desert. The Pacific Palisades native found herself in the top spot of the Dover Saddlery/USEF Hunter Seat Medal Saturday morning at Desert Holiday III aboard Cambalache, owned by O’Neill Show Jumping LLC.

The junior riders put their best efforts forward in the first round of the medal, which presented challenges, including a fence on the bank of the Grand Eq Ring. The top four were then invited back to test, introducing new challenges for the riders to demonstrate their mastery of equitation.

Tatum was in the top spot as the first round drew to a close, meaning she returned for the test last, able to see the other competitors go before her. She and “Tango” put in a stellar round and took home the blue ribbon.

“Six months ago he was a jumper, and I started riding him because he was a sale horse,” Tatum explained. “I ended up liking him a lot, so we ended up leasing him and now he’s my equitation horse.”

The Oldenburg gelding doubled this week for Tatum in the equitation and the Junior Hunters, proving his versatility. He seems to have found his calling outside the jumper ring, especially with Tatum in the irons. The 14-year-old has big goals in the equitation going into 2023. “For this season at Desert Horse Park, I want to stay consistent in the 3’6” equitation and hopefully qualify for national finals like the Dover [Saddlery/USEF Hunter Seat Medal Finals] and Maclay [Finals].”

“It was a nice win,” remarked Tatum’s trainer, Archie Cox of Brookway Stables. “The work-off consisted of different tests: a halt, a counter canter, and it had some new bending lines. Violet and Cambalache did it beautifully. They were called back first and remained first.

“We have had a great week [at Desert Holiday III]. It’s been a lot of fun,” he added. “It’s been very nice changing rings. The hunters are now going in the jumper rings and the horse show feels a little more homey. It’s more inclusive, you can get places quickly, and it’s been a super week.”

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The Pacific Coast Horse Shows Association (PCHA)

The Pacific Coast Horse Shows Association (PCHA), a non-profit corporation, has as its main purpose the promotion and development of the sport of horse showing, primarily in the Hunter/Jumper, Western and Reining disciplines. These objectives are accomplished by setting the standards for showing on the West Coast and approving shows that meet these criteria. 

Founded in 1946, the Pacific Coast Horse Shows Association promotes the interests of owners and exhibitors, cooperates with exhibitors, officials, and management of competition, publicizes and advertises PCHA sanctioned shows, encourages and assists owners, exhibitors, and breeders of horses to maintain, develop and improve the quality of horses of the Hunter, Jumper, Western and Reining divisions.