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Thorson Scores Three Wins At The Celebration



By Mark Davis

It’s Saturday Morning at The Celebration and there’s activity all over the grounds. It’s all Youth Day at The Celebration, which means there is the Youth Judging Contest and other Youth activities taking place all over the grounds. There are also clinics, barbeque cook-offs and lots of other events. Let’s not forget about the horse show, of course.

The Saturday morning performance of the 73rd Annual Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration features 12 classes of competition, 8 of which feature Youth exhibitors, from the Halter, Country Pleasure, Trail Pleasure and Equitation divisions.

The judges for the 73rd Annual Celebration include Jennifer Bingham of Shelbyville, Tenn., Jamie Bradshaw of Union Grove, Ala., Jamie Hankins of Paris, Ky., Ronnie Spears of Tullahoma, Tenn., and Jeff Willis of Shelbyville, Tenn.

The first class on the morning schedule was class 59E, Auxiliary Equitation, Medal Class, Youth Division, Riders 6-11 Years. For those unfamiliar, Equitation is the art of riding and is judged solely on the rider and their control of the horse, not on the performance of the horse. All six of the registered entries made the call to work for call judge Ronnie Spears and his staff. Making that blue ribbon ride this morning was Dana Wright of Lewisburg, Tenn.  Headed back to the Bluegrass state with reserve was Keely Marrow of Franklin, Ky.  Another Kentucky Exhibitor, Alayna Applegate of Morehead, Ky., was third.

A big class of young riders was up next in class 60, Western Youth Country Pleasure Walking Horses, Riders 6-17. Twenty of the 23 with reservations made their way into Calsonic Arena to work for Judge Jeff Willis and his peers. Busting out of the lineup with the approval of all five judges in the large class to ride to the winner’s circle was Bustline and MacKenzie Morgan riding for Fred and Vicki Benjamin and MacKenzie Morgan of Humboldt and Shelbyville, Tenn.  A Royal Attraction and Kaitlyn Rippy were reserve for Nick Rippy and Jackie Osborne of Bowling Green, Ky., and Greenbrier, Tenn. Hallelujah In The Sky and Tyler Diamond Pollack collected the yellow streamers for Pollack’s Silver Spur Ranch of Saratoga, Calif., and Shelbyville, Tenn.

In the halter division, class 61 featured the Owner-Amateur Yearlings, of 2011 Foal.  Twelve of the 14 on the official Lions Club program led their entries up from the warm up ring to show for judge Jennifer Bingham and her panel. Coming out of the line up and making that winning walk in the division was Walkin Down The Line and Brian Wright at the lead for the George Wright Family of Mt. Juliet, Tenn. This duo had 2011 wins at the Manchester Lions Club Horse Show and the Spring Fun Show and reserves at the International Grand Championships and the TWHBEA National Futurity. I’m Gene Autry and Roger Richards, Jr. pulled into the second position for Freda K. and Bobby Jones and Roger Richards of Hendersonville, Tenn.  Luna and owner/exhibitor Mike Rowland of Winchester, Tenn., rounded out the top three in the class.

The young riders were back for class 62, Owner-Amateur Youth Riders 12-17 Years, Western Trail Pleasure Walking Horses as all 10 of the expected entries made the call to work as judge Jamie Bradshaw called the gaits in the class. Riding to the top of the class was Suiza and owner/exhibitor Allison Thorson of Sandusky, Ohio. This marked this team’s sixth win of the 2011 season.  A Wicked Bond and Krysta Allen were second for Krysta Allen and Ty Irby of Pleasanton, Calif., and Shelbyville, Tenn.  She’s Pretty Jazzy and Kaitlyn Rippy secured the yellow streamers for Paige Bennett and Kaitlyn Rippy of Alvaton, Ky., and Greenbrier, Tenn.


The Trail Pleasure entries made their way to the rail for class 63, Amateur Owned & Trained English Trail Pleasure Walking Horses, No Professional Training within 90 days. Fifteen of the 19 expected made the gate to work for judge Jamie Hankins and his staff.  Picking up the unanimous win was Cougar King and owner/exhibitor Connie Waldo of Naples, Fla.  Just Doin My Time and Maggie Moore were reserve for Jim Leek and Maggie Moore of Murfreesboro, Tenn.  Lisa Weaver and Jose’s Sweet & Spicey were third for Fred and Lisa Weaver of Doyline, La.

The Equitation riders were back on the track for class64E, Auxiliary Equitation, Medal Class, Youth Division, Riders 12-14 Years (Canter). All five of the expected teams made the call to work for the honors in the division as judge Ronnie Spears served as call judge. Topping this section was the 2011 Youth 11 & Under Equitation World Champion Kaitlyn Rippy of Greenbrier, Tenn. This win marked her fourth Equitation win of the 2011 season. Allison Holt of Shelbyville, Tenn., was reserve, while Alexis King of Cornersville, Tenn., was third in the class.

Class 65 featured the Owner-Amateur Youth 6-11 Years, English or Western Trail Pleasure Walking Horses with all 10 of the teams on the books taking the rail to work as judge Jeff Willis called the gaits. It was certainly no secret as to the winner in the division and all five judges agreed as Pusher’s Secret Rose and Will Cole made the ride down victory lane for Langley, Coleman, Cole and Moore of Sandpoint, Idaho. Dark Picture Show and Jada Cassidy were reserve for Lloyd Cassidy of Mt. Sterling, Ky.  Battery Power and owner/exhibitor Hunter Wilhelm of Shelbyville, Tenn., pulled in to accept the third award.

Our final Equitation class of the morning performance, class 66E, Auxiliary Equitation Medal Class, Senior Division, Riders 15-17 Years (Canter) with one entry making the gait call to work for judge Jennifer Bingham and her fellow judges. After the rail work and pattern work was complete, it was Allison Thorson of Sandusky, Ohio called to the winner’s circle to garner the medal in the division. This win marked her 17th Equitation win of the 2011 show season after having shown at 20 shows in five states.

Owner-Amateur Youth Riders 12-17 Years, English Trail Pleasure Walking Horses came to Calsonic Arena with  11 entries working to the track to show as Judge Jamie Bradshaw served as Call Judge in the class.  Picking up their second blue of the morning was Suiza and Allison Thorson, capturing the win with a unanimous decision of the panel, and taking honors home to Sandusky, Ohio.  She’s Pretty Jazzy and Kaitlyn Rippy picked up the red ribbon for Paige Bennett & Kaitlyn Rippy of Alvaton, Ky. & Greenbrier, Tenn.  Victoria’s Got A Secret and Allie Dennis were third for Sandra Dennis of Marion, Ohio.

Back in the halter division, class 68 featured the Yearling Fillies or Geldings of 2010 foal. Twelve of the 18 with reservations made the gate call to work for judge Jamie Hankins and the judging panel. Once the work was complete, it was time to line up head to tail around the ring for confirmation judging. When the judging was all complete, announcer Mark Farrar, Jr., called the team of Score’s Diamond Girl and Beverly Lamp to the winner’s circle for Keith and Lorraine Rosbury of Aubrey, Texas. This win came with a unanimous decision of the judging panel and was preceded with 2011 wins at Liberty Lions Club Horse Show, Cornersville Lions Club Horse Show and the International. Jose’s Ginny Belle and Nathan Mills pulled into the second spot for Hidden Acres Farm of Donelson, Tenn. Ruby Diamond Ritz and Chris Richards were third for Mr. and Mrs. Charles E. Brantley of Wartrace, Tenn.

Class 69, English Youth Country Pleasure Walking Horses, riders 6-17 Years, featured 16 entries making the gait call to work for judge Ronnie Spears and staff. Riding away with the win in the class was the team of A Red Ruby and MacKenzie Morgan riding to the winner’s circle for MacKenzie Morgan, Liz Gassaway of Shelbyville, Tenn. A Royal Attraction and Kaitlyn Rippy were reserve for Jackie Osborne and Nick Rippy of Bowling Green, Ky., and Greenbrier, Tenn. Jose’s Hannah Montana and Kailin Kesselring were third for the Kasey Kesselring Family of Montverde, Fla., and Shelbyville, Tenn.

The final class of the morning session was class 70, Yearling Colts of 2010 Foal. Nine of the 14 with reservations took the rail to work for judge Jeff Willis and his staff. Walking to the win with a unanimous decision of the panel was The Supreme Titleist and Chris Richards at the lead for 4-J Land & Cattle Co., Bobby Jones and Roger Richards of Waynesville, Mo., Manchester, Tenn., and Hendersonville, Tenn. This was this colt’s 14th win of the 2011 show season. I’m A Firey Diamond and Beverly Lamp walking into the second position for Bobby Joe Jones of Manchester, Tenn.  Marshall Texas and Robert Nelms were third for the Webby Burch Family of College Grove, Tenn.

With photographer Shane Shiflet getting that final victory pass of the morning, the Saturday Morning session of the 73rd Annual Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration was complete at 12:35 p.m. Remember, there will be a full day of activities on the grounds tomorrow (Sunday), with Worship Services in the big oval at 7:40 a.m., the Celebration Dog Show in Calsonic Arena at 1:00 p.m., and the Stable Decorating Contest taking place around the grounds throughout the day leading up to the Sunday evening horse show starting at 7:00 p.m. in the historic big oval.

The final morning session will take place on Monday morning at 9:00 a.m., here in Calsonic Arena.  Make sure you’re here to enjoy all of the fun that makes up The Celebration.
 

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