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    THERMAL — The Los Angeles Hunter Jumper Association hosted all seven of its 2020 medal finals at the National Sunshine Preview, held Oct. 23-25 and co-produced by LEG Shows & Events and the Desert International Horse Park. Additional sponsors included Hansen Dam Horse Park, Elvenstar, LEGISequine.com and SmartPak.:

    Charley Stowell and Milan

    ESI photo

    Stowell and Elvenstar’s Milan won the LAHJA Junior Medal Final, laying down three consistent rounds to earn the overall championship in the LAHJA Junior Medal Final presented by LEGISequine.com.

    “Being part of LAHJA is great because you have opportunities to do multiple finals,” said Stowell, 14. “This final will help me prepare for the future, and I am so thankful for my team and my family around me.”

    Georgia Bass and Cowboy

    ESI photo

    After two rounds and a work-off, Bass took top honors in the LAHJA Betsy Woods Horsemanship Medal Final, presented by Smartpak.

    “I’m just really excited and happy,” said Bass, trained by Karen Perlow. “Walking into my first 2’9” medal was definitely very scary. My trainer reassured me that even if something went wrong, I did my best – and that’s what matters. Without Karen’s support and my family’s support, I would not have been able to do this. And Cowboy, he was so exceptional.”

    Lily Grosz and Lover Boy

    ESI photo

    The top four riders worked off after two tough rounds of competition, and it was Grosz, trained by Elvenstar, who earned the championship in the LAHJA Rosewood Medal Final, presented by Smartpak. She trusted her instincts and was the only rider to properly execute the work-off.

    “I’ve made the mistake of following others before and I learned from that,”she said.

    Grosz was also the reserve champion in the LAHJA Junior Medal Final, presented by LEGISequine.com.

    “I couldn’t ask for a better horse,” she said of Lover Boy, owned by Hailey Link. “This weekend has been amazing. I can’t believe I was the reserve champion in the LAHJA Junior Final and the champion in the Rosewood Final. They are two medal finals I’ve grown up watching.”

    Nicole McMillion and Oh Wonder

    ESI photo

    With two rounds and a work-off for the top four, McMillion, trained by Elvenstar, clinched the win in the LAHJA Pony Medal Final aboard Chynna Walker’s large pony, Oh Wonder 21. The class was sponsored by Elvenstar.

    “It was such a fun weekend, McMillion said. “I think LAHJA is just one big community, one big family. I always enjoy the LAHJA Medal Finals because everyone supports each other.”

    Amalia Goshtigian and Nimbus

    ESI photo

    After two rounds of competition, Goshtigian, trained by Stephanie Haney, topped the LAHJA Stirrup Cup/ Mary Jane Watson Combined Medal Final with her own Nimbus.

    “This is my very first medal final win and I am so excited about it,” she said. “Honestly, Nimbus has been such a great teacher. Living through 2020 and being able to have this experience still has been more than I can ask for.”

    Anne Sherwood and Cassito

    ESI photo

    After three rounds and a work-off, Sherwood and Cassito claimed the LAHJA Senior Medal Final, presented by Hansen Dam Horse Park.

    “I have always watched the LAHJA Senior Medal Finals and I rode in the final once before,” said Sherwood, who is trained by Michelle Morris. “I am really honored to be a part of such an incredible group of riders and horses. I have a lot of respect for Lorri Quiett who was sitting on top going into the work-off. She had a beautiful round, so I knew I had to try my best. It was a tough work-off with a counter canter and a tight rollback to a trot jump. I tried to make it as handy as possible.

    “I love that HDHP supported this medal final,” she added. “I really enjoy boarding my horse there and my favorite thing is walking around the big property after my lessons. It’s a great facility and we love it.”

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