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Heart of America Hosts Midwest Finale



By Jennifer Maack-Condren

SEDALIA, Mo. - The Heart of America Walking Horse Association held the final show for the Midwest area Oct. 24-25 on the Missouri State Fairgrounds. A total of 233 entries were presented before judge Charlie Brown during the three-performance event. Show manager Shirley Lotridge was very pleased with the turnout for the show. “Considering the weather and the forecast, I think we’ve had a great show,” she said.

Friday’s temperatures were in the 70s, but that soon changed as a storm and cold front blew in on Friday night dropping temperatures to the 50s and 40s for Saturday night. Most were prepared, donning coveralls and coats to finish out the season.

Concluding the show was Jubilee’s Image and Curt Caldwell as they captured another title for proud owners Matt and Lisa McWilliams with a win in the Aged Horse Championship class. This win was the fifth win of the show for the Caldwell Stables banner. Two other blues were won by McWilliams owned stock. On The Rise and Matt McWilliams were victorious in the 50 & Over Amateur Specialty class, and Georgia’s Gray Sky and Curt Caldwell won the Open Specialty class. Winning two blues under the direction of Curt Caldwell were Glenda Nichols and Delightful Romeo. This new duo captured wins in the Ladies Amateur Specialty class and the Amateur Specialty class.

Glenda and Ted Nichols had other reasons to celebrate - six of them to be exact. Coin’s Smooth Operator and Brad Nichols won the Juvenile 12-17 class and Caretaker’s Image, owned by Campbell Ford-Mercury, won five blues during the weekend with a host of riders. Glenda and Ted won the Ladies and Men’s Park Pleasure Two-Gait classes on Friday night respectively. On Saturday it was the kids’ turn, Stephanie Campbell won the Park Pleasure Two-Gait class; Michelle Campbell won the Juvenile Park Pleasure class; and little Lisa Campbell won the Amateur Owned and Trained Park Pleasure class as well as the hearts of the spectators dressed in her formal black suit and top hat.

Don Bills Stables made a sweep of the two-year-old division. Extra’s Dark Mist and Bills claimed the win in the mare class for Mr. and Mrs. Curtis Sims. Bills returned a few classes later to win the stallion class in the two-year-old division with Royal and Famous for Lin Davis. Carroll Counts and Peppermint Ice won the Two-Year-Old Amateur class on Saturday under Bills’ direction.

Two other wins added to the tally for the Don Bills Stables. Talk Is Cheap and Tamee LeNeve-Heiman were awarded the blue ribbon and crystal trophy in the Four-Year-Old Amateur class, and later in the evening Darlene Swaringim and Mark The Time earned their 12th blue ribbon of the year in the Amateur Show Pleasure Specialty class.

Jim Huffman also took home five blues to Ozark. The Three-Year-Old Stallion class win went to Huffman and Victory Colors. They returned on Saturday night to add a final win to their resume, HAWHA Futurity Three-Year-Old Performance class. This win came on the heels of a win in the Open Mare & Gelding class with Diamonds And Cash for Mr. and Mrs. Richard Mitch.

Huffman prepared two Two-Year-Olds for the HAWHA Futurity for the husband and wife team of Ron Boyer and Karen McKinnis. McKinnis inched out Boyer for a win on Thorncrest’s Chantilly. Earlier in the day, Jim Huffman presented Thorncrest’s PussyCat to the HAWHA Futurity yearling win for Thorncrest Farms.

Anne Hardin prepared horses were no stranger to the winner’s circle either. Winning the first of their five blues was Stride’s Secret Finale in the HAWHA Futurity Lite-Shod Three & Under class for owners Mr. and Mrs. Paul Schoer. This head shaking black colt came back to win the Lite-Shod Three & Under class as well. Twisted Cash added two wins to the Hardin banner. Harold Roberts made the good ride in the 50 & Over Park Pleasure class, and Kyndra Roberts followed suit in the Amateur Park Pleasure class. Roberts found her way to the winner’s circle again with The Pusher’s Generator in the Open Amateur class on Saturday night.

Pusher’s Lady On The Loose won two classes under the training of Mike Maack. Maack took his turn first, winning the Three- Year-Old Mares & Gelding class for owner Carol Middleton. Not to be outdone, Middleton had her turn on Saturday with a win in the Three-Year-Old Amateur class. Steve and Karen Skopec had reason to celebrate after the show as well. Shadow Of Skywatch and Maack won the Four-Year-Old Specialty class. Maack’s fourth win was with Shaker’s Mr. Threat and Alisa Zbornik in the Juvenile Lite-Shod 11 & Under class for Georgia Swicegood.

Truman and Deborah Volkart claimed three of the 51 blue ribbons offered. Grandson Weston Hetland once again proved his ability with a win in the Walking Pony 11 & Under class with Major Monkey Business. Truman returned to the winner’s circle with Monkey Business in the Amateur Owned and Trained Specialty class. The Men’s Amateur Specialty class win went to Truman and The Juice.

Stephen and Patty Ayers had success with their flat-shod stock. Thorncrest’s Gambit and Patty Ayers rode away with the win in the HAWHA Futurity Park Pleasure Two-Year-Old class. Stephen Ayers and American Revolution received to honors in the HAWHA Futurity Three-Year-Old Park Pleasure class and American Justice and Kelsey Bales won the Open Yearling class for Ayers.

Sandra Huffman made the trip from New Sharon, Iowa, to win two blues. Rose’s Threat B and Karen Farris won the Lite-shod Three-Gait class. Twister’s Sonnett and Sandra Huffman won the Three and Under Park Pleasure class for Aileen Novinger. Bill and Norma Branham also added to their win tally for the season with a pair of wins in Sedalia. Generating Cash and Bill Branham made the victory pass in the Park Pleasure Three-Gait class and followed this up with a win on Pay The Pusher in the Amateur Performance Pleasure class.

Steve Skopec won two blues with the Bill and Shirley Lotridge entry, Cash’s Midnight Sun in the lite-shod division. Skopec was in the irons for both rides in the Amateur Lite-Shod Two-Gait class and the Lite-Shod Two-Gait class.

Horses under the direction of Lee Loveday claimed top honors in two classes as well. Marvelene Kusewitt and My Horse Showtime rode away with the blue in the Lite-Shod Western Two-Gait class. Dark Mark and Loveday received the judge’s tie in the Open Show Pleasure Specialty class. Fashion’s Magic Princess and Sue Halvorson continued their winning ways from last week’s Corn Belt show with wins in the Amateur Park Pleasure Three-Gait class and the Western Park Pleasure Two-Gait class.

It was no dream for Elvin Sapp as he made a good ride in the tough 15.2 & Under Amateur Specialty class on The Wildest Dream. Tom Burton and Royal’s High Pride proved they deserved top placing in the Classic Horse class. Tabatha Richards and Charged By JFK was named the top contender in the Amateur Owned & Trained Lite-Shod class with the rail coaching from husband Jim Richards. Jerry Manes walked his way to another blue ribbon win for A.L. and Patti Forgey with Dazzling Dixie in the HAWHA Futurity Weanling class. Thorncrest’s Sissor Tail and Kelsey Bales proved they were on top with the win in the Open Weanling class for Thorncrest Farms.

It was a bittersweet win for the McCall Clamp Stables with John Deere and Lindsey Mott in the Lead Line class as they announced that this would be the popular pony’s final show. Everett Clamp has made many trips to the winner’s circle with both Lindsey and sister Leslie Ann and the spectators will certainly miss this well prepared team.

The crowd had their opinions in the Juvenile 11 & Under Specialty class as nine fine entries made the gate call. This was one of the largest and most competitive classes of the show and all of these fine juveniles made a great show, some getting their first taste of a workout at the request of judge Brown. But it was Generator’s Legend making the trip to receive the blue under the direction of Mike Blewitt and Arrowhead Stables. Megan Villhard made the good catch ride for owner Joe Rozman.

Trainer’s, exhibitors, grooms and spectators were treated to an exhibitor’s party on Friday night sponsored by Heart of America. Sarah Mitch was hostess to a lovely party on Saturday night following the show, which featured wine, cheese, hor d’oeuvres and desserts. A violinist played selections during the socialization and fellowship of winding down the show season. It was quite a fitting celebration for the final show of the year.

Complete results follow and can be found on our web site at www.walkinghorsereport.com.

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