Lexington, Ky. – August 8, 2021 – This weekend, Amateur-Owner hunter competition was the feature division in the Stonelea ring at the Kentucky Summer Classic. The field of competitive entries vied for the Grand Champion tricolor that was awarded today. A strong group of talented riders and their mounts were in contention for the title of Grand Amateur-Owner Hunter Champion. Ultimately, Jeanine Cash and Freedom dominated a field of 11 entries in the Amateur-Owner 3’3” 36+ Hunter division, placing in the top two of each class. Their consistency ensured them the division championship ribbon and the most points of any Amateur-Owner hunter rider throughout the week to take home the coveted title of Hagyard Grand Amateur-Owner Hunter Champion, presented by Hagyard Medical Institute.
Cash and Freedom, who also earned the Grand Amateur-Owner Hunter Champion title at the Kentucky Summer Horse Show in 2020, were prepared to leave it all in the ring in hopes of a repeat win. The pair started their weekend strong on Saturday by placing first in their opening over fences round. After their second trip, Cash was only beaten by her round her other mount, Boccacio, firmly establishing her dominance of the division
Despite their strong results, Cash is only a year into her partnership with Freedom, a 10-year-old Swedish Warmblood mare, making a winning strategy even more important for the second day of division competition. The pair turned in one first-place finish and one second-place finish in the over fences and handy portions of the division, respectively. They then went on to secure first place in the under saddle class as Freedom wowed judges and spectators with her floating movement and textbook style.
In addition to their Grand Amateur-Owner Hunter Champion titles Cash and Freedom have earned a number of high-placing ribbons, including the Grand Amateur-Owner Hunter Champion title at Lake Placid. Freedom continues to impress her connections with a multitude of top placings since transitioning from the 1.20m jumpers in Europe. Cash knew the mare was special, and purchased her without hesitation after their first meeting despite her inexperience in the hunter ring. Cash’s decision has served them well, and they are now well on their way to achieving Cash’s goal of dominating her division at the National Horse Show.
The Grand Amateur-Owner Hunter Champion award concludes competition at the Kentucky Summer Classic. Competitors will return to the Kentucky Horse Park on August 10th with their ponies for the USEF Pony Finals, presented by Honor Hill Farm.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Jeanine Cash – Grand Amateur-Owner Hunter Champion
“I have had her for a little over a year and a half. I purchased her from Brady Mitchell and Chris Anderson. I wanted an amateur-owner horse that was for my size and that’s why we bought her. She has been very consistent and just learning about her and just riding her the way that she wants to be ridden. I do my best to stay out of her way and just let her do her thing.”
On her rounds:
“I was really proud of my round yesterday. I was especially proud of my handy because I improved from last week. Last week wasn’t as smooth, so I smoothed it out this week and I was very happy. I was a little calmer and I kept my reins shorter. I also made sure to listen to my trainer, Caitlin.”
On showing at the Kentucky Horse Park:
“I love it. This is my second summer here. [Freedom] was also champion and Grand Amateur Champion last year as well.”
On future plans:
“I’m hoping to qualify for Harrisburg and we’ll do the National Horse Show here back in Kentucky. I would also like to thank my parents, my husband and my trainers. I also want to thank the whole team behind the scenes. I am so lucky to be with Holly Hill. We are all just always on the same page and it feels like a family. I’ve been there for six or seven years and it just works perfectly for me.”