Emma Schauder of Greenwich, CT, won the $5,000 NEHJA Hunter Derby, presented by Eastern Hay, on Thursday, July 12, at the 25th annual Vermont Summer Festival, which runs for six weeks through August 12 at Harold Beebe Farm in East Dorset, VT.
The innovative derby course, designed by Gerry Briggs of Smyrna, TN, encompassed two rings with both traditional hunter jumps and derby-style fences. Schauder scored a pair of 86s to sit on a total score of 172 after two rounds riding In The Loop, owned by Tracy Hart. Linda Orton of Stamford, VT, earned the high score of 88 in the opening round and returned to post an 82 over the handy track to finish second on a final score of 170 riding Demi. Holly Shepherd of Grand Bay, AL, rode Jerez Mai, owned by Micaela Kennedy, to scores of 78 and 85 for a 163 final score and third place.
Deirdre Catani of Pembroke, MA, and Gronk 87, took fourth with scores of 71 and 83 for a 154 final, and rounding out the top five was Lindsey Demont of Littleton, MA, who scored 151 after combining scores of 72 and 79 riding Cassius T for owned Holman Imports, LLC.
Special awards were also presented to Margaret Astley of Taftsville, VT, as the high-point junior competitor riding Gatsby, and Marissa Dolan of Boston, MA, as the high-point amateur aboard Chestnut Hill, owned by MCD Farms, LLC.
“This horse is incredibly special to me,” said Schauder, 23, of In The Loop, a 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding by Tenerife VDL. “I picked him out from Stal Wilten on a 24-hour trip to Holland. Since then, he has done nothing but win for us. But the derbies are where this horse shines. He is so handy and loves the challenge of inside turns in the handy.
“Today there weren’t too many options to go inside, but we did from one to two and then the rest was a winding handy where pace and a consistent rhythm was most important,” continued Schauder, who just turned professional in the fall after graduating from the University of Georgia in 2017. “I stayed an amateur for a year, but I really love teaching as much as I love riding, so I made the decision to go professional so I can help out my family’s business, Country Lane Farm, more.”
Led by Schauder’s parents, Fred and Christina, Country Lane Farm makes a point to attend the Vermont Summer Festival every summer.
“This is the big hurrah for our barn and we have 15 horses here this year,” said Schauder. “It’s such a special show for our barn because there are classes for everyone and it’s nice to be able to enjoy other things in Vermont as well as spend our days at this lovely show.”
Competition continues at the Vermont Summer Festival with the $30,000 Battenkill Grand prix, presented by The Equinox Resort, on Saturday, July 14, beginning at 1 p.m.
The Vermont Summer Festival is New England’s largest hunter/jumper competition and the richest sporting event based on purse in the state of Vermont with more than $750,000 in prize money. The event is also a proud member of the Show Jumping Hall of Fame, the Marshall & Sterling League, and the North American League (NAL). Outside the show ring, exhibitors are immersed in the charm of Vermont's shopping, dining, and outdoor activities.
Competition at the 2018 Vermont Summer Festival runs weekly from Wednesday through Sunday, beginning each day at 8 a.m. Admission is $6 for adults and $3 for children from Wednesday through Friday. On Saturday and Sunday, admission is $9 for adults and $5 for children with 100% of all gate proceeds benefiting The Dorset School, Manchester Community Library, and the Rotary Club of Manchester.
$5,000 NEHJA Hunter Derby, presented by Eastern Hay
Thursday, July 12
Rider Hometown Horse Scores
1. Emma Schauder Greenwich, CT In The Loop 86/86=172
2. Linda Orton Stamford, VT Demi 88/82=170
3. Holly Shepherd Grand Bay, AL Jerez Mail 78/85=163
4. Deirdre Catani Pembroke, MA Gronk 87 71/83=154
5. Lindsey Demont Littleton, MA Cassius T 72/79=151
6. Margaret Astley Taftsville, VT Gatsby 74/76=150
7. Emma Schauder Greenwich, CT Kamea Kai 75/72=147
8. Marissa Dolan Boston, MA Chestnut Hill 69/77=146
9. Emily Tarr Colchester, VT Epic Journey 70/74=144
10. Susan Gomez Medway, MA In The Pursuit 83/57=140
11. Karen Eisenhauer North Grafton , MA Sam Suffit 80/55=135
12. Holly Shepherd Grand Bay, AL Cesar de Lison Z 76/42=118