All-Around winners at Level 1 East Championships named

Ruth Kaplan and Wish Upon A Lark

After nearly a week of competition, top exhibitors earned prizes May 7 at the 2017 Nutrena East AQHA Level 1 Championships in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Christine Gudas of Lafayette, Indiana, arrived in Raleigh with one goal: to finish in the top 10 in one class.

She did that and more.

At the end of the Nutrena East, Christine was the amateur all-around champion.

Christine and her sister, Jennifer, share Lopin For Cookies, the 2010 bay mare they have owned since she was 2.

“She does love her cookies,” Christine says. “She used to be my sister’s horse. She showed her in pleasure and we decided to start doing all-around with her last year. We’ve been doing this for a little over a year now.”

Lopin For Cookies lives in Richmond, Virginia, with AQHA Professional Horsewoman Jennifer Leckey, and Christine says the mare has been easy to show.

“She’s sweet,” Christine says. “She’s always calm, always there, always ready. She’s so easy to prepare. We longed her maybe 15-20 minutes while we’ve been here. She’s a good horse.”

As Christine ends what she calls “a really good show” with Lopin For Cookies, she says their showing partnership is far from over.

“When we came to showmanship class, I thought, ‘I don’t know why we came here. I’ve never even placed,’” Christine says. “And I wound up with the bronze. That was pretty exciting. And then the pleasure and the horsemanship – pretty awesome.”

A year ago, Select rider Ruth Kaplan of Wooster, Ohio, told her husband that she wanted to compete heavily in horse shows for a year to see what she and her homebred Wish Upon A Lark could do.

“One and done,” she says she promised him. She enlisted the help of AQHA Professional Horsemen Brent and Melissa Maxwell to help her. But at the end of the year, she hadn’t quite achieved all her goals with “Jimmy.” She wanted a championship for him, so she arrived at Nutrena East with that in mind.

“Jimmy isn’t my horse,” she says. “He’s my son.”

Their close partnership – since Jimmy was foaled in 2002 – helped them win Ruth’s favorite class, trail, which set the tone for the rest of the show.

“This has been a dream come true,” she says.

The Farnam all-around exhibitors received a Montana Silversmiths belt buckle and a trophy.

Christine Gudas of Lafayette, Indiana, and Lopin For Cookies, a 2010 bay mare by Lazy Loper-Hot Cookies Only by Invitation Only. Breeder: Paige Musselman, Petersburg, Michigan. Owners: Jennifer and Christine Gudas, Kewanna, Indiana

Ruth Kaplan of Wooster, Ohio, and Wish Upon A Lark, a 2002 palomino gelding by Rugged Lark-Seven S Cagney by Pines Zippo Bars. Breeder/owner: Ruth Kaplan

Isabella Himes of Bristol, Indiana, and Assets Miss Reba, a 1997 bay mare by Investment Asset-Hard Star Miss by Hard Hunka Harlan. Breeder: Nancy Cealka Smith, New Carlisle, Indiana. Owner: Penni Himes, Bristol. 

Peyton Baxter of Rockford, Michigan, and Fightin Off Sleep, a 2011 bay gelding by Too Sleepy To Zip-Form The Line Behind by Petite Lord. Breeder: Shelley Ruth Donovan, Sturgis, Michigan. Owner: Ginger Baxter, Rockford.

The Farnam reserve all-around exhibitors received a set of Montana Silversmiths spurs and a trophy.

Brandy Gates Halladay, Odessa, Florida, and Pleasures Impulse, a 2002 brown mare by Hot Impulse-Private Pleasures by Zippo Pine Bar. Breeder: Jeff Adams, Durant, Oklahoma. Owner: Halladay Show Horses, Odessa.

Janet Stevens of Colpitts Settlement, New Brunswick, and OHK Ziphistication, a 2008 bay mare by One Hot Krymsun-Ziphistication by Zip Me Anytime. Breeder: Krista Downey, Fredericton, New Brunswick. Owners: Janet and Robert Stevens.

Anna Evans of Goldsboro, North Carolina, and Hot Amigo Leaguer, a 2001 bay gelding by Zippo Hot Pine-Amiga Leaguer by Im A Big Leaguer. Breeder: Gorman and Alice Barger, Weber City, Virginia. Owner: Maggie Evans, Goldsboro

Riley Eurton of Bloomington, Indiana, and Prada Pine, a 2008 sorrel mare by Vested Pine-Investment Royalty by Investment Asset. Breeder: Susan L. Watkins, Hamilton, Indiana; Owner: Kara Eurton, Bloomington

The Farnam bronze all-around exhibitors received a set of stirrups.

Cristina Topor-Burns of Whitesboro, New York, and RL A Lucky Sudden, a 2002 sorrel gelding by A Sudden Impulse-RL Cream Puff by Radical Rodder. Breeder: Roberts Development Corp., Reddick, Florida. Owner: Cristina Topor-Burns

Kathleen Pfister of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and Imagine You And Me, a 2002 sorrel gelding by Barpassers Image-Winsome Pat Star by Skipa Star. Breeder: Sanctuary Stables Ltd., Jupiter, Florida. Owner: Kathleen Pfister

Mason Dorsey of Powell, Ohio, and Good Alibis, a 2010 red roan gelding by PS Good Bars Kat-Eternal Storyteller by Levis And Alibis. Breeder: Peter Allen Schouweiler, Plainview, Minnesota. Owner: Mason Dorsey

Autumn Cercone of Lockport, New York, and Guccis Outlaw, a 2004 bay gelding by Gucci Only-Miss Buckeye Rose by The Buckeye Look. Breeder: Richard Parry, Hillsboro, Ohio. Owner: Autumn Cercone

The halter champion of champions received a trophy and a neck ribbon

Millie Corder of Gainesville, Georgia, showing Believe Im The One, a 2012 sorrel mare by Unbelievable-Let Me Enlighten You by Enlightened. Breeder/owner: Pam A. Wilson, Gainesville

Aubrey Hughes of Max Meadows, Virginia, showing Hoosier Gunslinger, a 2010 sorrel gelding by Western Gunslinger-My Mystical Playgirl by Playgirls Reflection. Breeder: Rose Bode, Columbus, Indiana. Owner: Ronald B. Hughes, Max Meadows

The reserve halter champion of champions received a trophy and a neck ribbon.

Millie Corder of Gainesville, Georgia, showing My Daddyis Cool, a 2011 bay gelding by Very Cool-Give Her The Tiera by Sierra Te. Breeder: Kelli Jensen, Freeland, Michigan. Owner: Millie Corder, Gainesville

Peyton Baxter of Rockford, Michigan, showing Fightin Off Sleep, a 2011 bay gelding by Too Sleepy To Zip-Form The Line Behind by Petite Lord. Breeder: Shelley Ruth Donovan, Sturgis, Michigan. Owner: Ginger Baxter, Rockford

The high-point western exhibitors received a Noble Outfitters backpack and a Noble Outfitters grooming tote.

Gracie Lea Cochran of Lateer, Michigan, and Only Immortal, a 2009 chestnut mare by The Immortal-Pattys In Trouble by Trouble In Town. Breeder: Sheri Kern, Pilot Point, Texas. Owner: Gracie Lea Cochran

Betty Vanover of Hamersville, Ohio, and Holy Chip, a 2006 bay gelding by Promote This Chip-Sweet Investment Too by Investment Zippo. Breeder: Doug J. Jacobs, Scotch Grove, Iowa. Owner: Betty Vanover

Jillian Athey Dar and N Case U Hadn Noticd, a 2007 red roan mare by My Final Notice-High Fashion Pass by Barpasser. Breeder: Leann A. Hanson, Starbuck, Minnesota. Owner: Cara Darden, Griffin, Georgia

YOUTH 14-18
Autumn Elise Hart of Albany, Georgia, and Only A Natural, a 2005 black gelding by Natural Iron-Zip A Duty by Zippo Jack Bar. Breeder: Patricia A. Moser, Alachua, Florida. Owner: Elisabeth Driskell, Dawson, Georgia

The high-point English exhibitors received a Noble Outfitters boot bag and a Noble Outfitters grooming tote.

Kimberly Sue Ipock of La Grange, North Carolina, and Im Just Rite, a 2012 bay mare by Just Like Detail-Stridin It Right by JD Concluded. Breeder/owner: Kimberly Sue Ipock

Kimberly Kriesel of Princeton, Minnesota, and BMQ One Slow Ride, a 20090 bay gelding by BMQ Legacy-Sweet Talkin Time by Sweet Talkin Chip. Breeder: Dale W. Christenson, Cambridge, Minnesota. Owner: Kimberly Kriesel

Isabella Marie D’Onofrio of Columbus, Ohio, and Nearly Chocolate, a 2008 chestnut gelding by Huntin For Chocolate-Ms Cordinator by The Intimidator. Breeder: Melvin L. Kifer Jr., Bessemer City, North Carolina. Owner: Isabella Marie D’Onofrio

YOUTH 14-18
Payton Porter of Palm City, Florida, and EF Hutton Man, a 1997 sorrel gelding by Debt Of Honor-EF Bounce Back by ST Bar. Breeder: Meredith “Peg” Edmonson, Nokomis, Florida. Owner: Payton Porter

The B&W Rookie high-point exhibitors received a Noble Outfitters backpack and a trophy.

Laura Carroll Dickerson of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and Coosas Sonny Globe, a 1999 bay gelding by Coosa Lad-Miss Sonny Par Glo by Sonny Par Bar. Breeder: Clyde A. Smith, Forest, Virginia. Owner: Mary Carroll Dickerson, Chapel Hill

Heather Bearden of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, and Sweet Talkin Johnnie, a 2008 chestnut gelding by Sweet Talkin Chip-Beaus Strawberry by Beaus My Daddy. Breeder: Keith and Jennifer Carey, Hemlock, Michigan. Owner: Amanda Bearden, Bloomfield Hills

Carli Kerns of Manchester, Michigan, and Zippin Past The Best, a 2012 chestnut gelding by It’s a Zippo Good Bar-Ima Barhoppinmomma by Barpassers Best. Breeder: Patty Roberts, Chatsworth, Georgia. Owner: Carli Kerns

YOUTH 14-18
Ashlie Bell of Leesburg, Georgia, and Ambers Hotrod, a 2003 palomino gelding by Hotroddin Zippo-Zips Amber Oaks by Seven S Flashyzipper. Breeders: Larry E. and Betty Jo Andis, Morristown, Indiana. Owner: Ashlie Bell


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