HARRISBURG, Pa--Scott Stewart of Flemington, N.J., dominated the open hunter divisions, taking three of the five championships and a reserve in a fourth, and he was the Leading Hunter Rider for the third time in a row at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show, Oct. 12-21 in Harrisburg, but Canada ruled in the open jumper division.
Almost all of Stewart's wins came on horses ownd by Dr. Betsee Parker of Middleburg, Va.
Stewart first rode Wonderly to the championship in the 3'6" Green Hunter section and to the Grand Green Hunter Championship on Oct. 17.
Wonderly, an 8-year-old gelding, won four of the five classes contested, and the only class he didn't win went to Parker's other horse in the division, Luster, also ridden by Stewart, who was Reserve Champion.
After the conformation sections were run on the next two days, Wonderly's wins stood up, and he was awarded the Pennsylvania National Grand Hunter Championship and the Beaufort Hunt Perpetual Trophy.
One of the two championships Stewart didn't win was the 3'9" Green Hunter tricolor, which went to Patriot with Hunt Tosh riding for the Wheeler Family.
But Stewart did take the Reserve Championship with the Fashion Farm's Captivate.
STEWART then won the High Performance Working Hunter Championship yet another of Dr. Parker's horses, Cameo, a 10-year-old gelding.
For that championship, Stewart and Cameo won the Cismont Manor Farm Challenge Trophy, which they retired, as Cameo was the third of Dr. Parker's horses to win it.
Cameo won two classes in the division, and was second, third and fourth in the remainder of the classes.
Rock Harbor with Louise Serio of Kennett Square, Pa., riding for owner Jennifer Burger, was Reserve Champion.
"Are there any more trophies for me to get?" joked Stewart after the win. "This is only Cameo's second show since Devon He doesn't need to do a lot. He is such an easy horse he doesn't need a lot of miles."
Two days later, Stewart was back on top, taking the Green Conformation Hunter Championship on Parker's Private Life.
This was a hard-fought battle for Stewart, as the pair won the first over fences class then had trouble in the second and only scored a 45.
But the second day of competition the pair returned to form, placing fourth and then winning the final class with a score of 92.
"The Championship came down to the last class," said Stewart. "I knew I had to win it. I made a few mistakes in the other classes, myself not the horse, and I knew it going in. Sometimes the pressure is good for me. Private Life is only a 6-year-old, and he has had a light schedule but has been very successful. He was awesome today. He is the easiest horse to ride. It is so easy it is hard. He is always pretty right-on, they are usually my mistakes."
Stewart received the Elizabeth M. Solter Memorial Perpetual Trophy as Leading Hunter Rider.
This is the third time in a row that Stewart has won the award.
Stewart also won the EMO High Five Award for receiving the highest score in the Professional Hunter divisions, a 92, given in the last class with Private Life.
The only other championship not won by Stewart was for High Performance Conformation Hunters which was won by Jennifer Alfano riding her Candid.
STEPHANIE FABIANO of Mechanicsville, Pa., and her Neato won the Grand Amateur Owner 3'3" Hunter Championship on Oct. 20.
Fabiano and Neato, an 8-year-old gelding, won the Amateur Owner 3'3" Hunter Championship for Riders 18-35 Years of Age on their way to the Grand Championship.
The pair, who have only been together since January, and did not start showing in the Amateur Owner divisions until May, won or placed in every class they showed in for the title.
"We have had an amazing year," said Fabiano. "He is an amazing horse. He has an amazing jump and is just wonderful to ride. I have been coming to this show since I was about 7. I used to watch the pony hunters with my Mom. I have been riding and showing for a long time, but I have never been champion here. It is like an amazing fairy tale come true."
Ashleigh Glorioso, 25, of Burke, Va., and Turtle were Sidesaddle Champions on Oct. 17, with Amy Jo Magee of Coatesville, Pa., and Little Lady winning the Reserve Championship.
Glorioso and Turtle won both the Over Fences Class and the Hunter Hack Class to earn the championship, and Magee was second in all three classes..
"It's very special to win here," said Glorioso. "My horse was off the track, so for him to come to a big venue like this is pretty great. A lot of people counted him out because he's not the flashiest horse, but for him to win here means a lot to me because I've trained him from the beginning."
RIDERS FROM the U.S. had a bit of a hard time of it in Harrisburg, with Samuel Parot of Chile winning the first class, the $10,000 Dash for Cash, on Couscous after arriving at the Farm Show Arena just one hour prior to the class for his first visit to the show.
Then the Canadians skunked the U.S., taking first, second and third in the $100,000 Prix de Penn National, and a Canadian was the Open Jumper Champion and another Canadian was the Open Jumper Speed Champion.
In the Grand Prix on the final Sturday evening, Nicole Walker led the way on Falco van Spieveld, Francois Lamontagne was second riding Chanel du Calvaire and Ali Ramsay was third on Hermelien VD Hooghoeve.
"He is usually a bit of a slower horse, so we tried to leave out strides when we could and do tight turns back," said Walker, 23. "I knew there were some really good riders after me, and I wasn't sure my time would hold up, but I'm just so happy that it did."
Swiss Olympic veteran and former World Cup champion Beat Mandli actually had the fastest jump-off time, finishing in 29.96 seconds on Dsarie, but a rail down at the penultimate fence cost him four faults and left him in sixth place.
"This is my first three-star win and definitely my biggest win to date," said an elated Walker who last showed in Harrisburg in 2011 when she rode in the USEF Medal Finals. "This is just an incredible night and one that I will remember forever!"
"My mare is 9, and I bought her when she was 5," Lamontagne said. "She is not the most conventional when she canters but she is scopey and careful. She was very good here tonight."
Walker and Falco van Spieveld won the Open Jumper Championship with Katie Dinan and Dougie Douglas Reserve Champions.
Walker was also named Leading Lady Jumper Rider and Lamontagne was named Leading Open Jumper Rider, sponsored by Sapphire Riding Academy.
Lamontagne was also Open Jumper Speed Champion on Vigo Massuere.
Dinan, 24, of Wellington, Fla., and Dougie Douglas earned the Reserve Championship by winning the $40,000 Pennsylvania National "Big Jump" Thursday evening.
It was her first open jumper class victory in Harrisburg.
"It's great to have a win here," said Dinan. "This is my 15th Harrisburg in a row and it's my first time winning an open jumper class here. I was second in the grand prix one year, but it's nice to win a class. It's nice for Dougie because I think he deserves a result like this. He's a super horse and he has such a big heart. It's a real thrill to ride him."