Farewell and Lumiere are Crowned Medium Green Pony Hunter Champion at the 2021 USEF Pony Finals, presented by Honor Hill Farm

Lexington, Ky – Aug. 13, 2021 – Hunter ponies and riders returned to the Rolex Ring for day four of competition at the 2021 USEF Pony Finals, presented by Honor Hill Farm, where they vied for the championship title of the 2021 and 2020 Medium Green Pony Hunters. Two more champions were crowned following successful over fences classes, as Lillian Geitner and Farewell held the trophy for the Medium Green Hunter division, while Susannah Morrell and Lumiere lead the victory gallop in the 2020 Medium Green Hunters.

Lillian Geitner and Farewell

Geitner and Farewell, a 7-year-old gelding owned by Daniel Geitner, came into day two of competition for the Medium Green Hunters standing in seventh place with a total of 497.680 after earning two high scores in the model and under saddle classes Thursday morning. These two are no strangers to the winner’s circle and knew that if they kept their composure and rhythm throughout the over-fences class, they would be strong contenders to place at the top of the class. After laying down a technically strong round, the judges awarded the pair for their consistency, form, and pace, with a score of 255.900, helping them secure the championship title out of a competitive group of 61-athletes.

Susannah Morrell and Lumiere

Susanna Morrell and Lumiere, an 8-year-old Welsh Pony Cross gelding, owned by Morrell, were named the 2020 Medium Green Pony Hunter champion after placing at the top of the model and under saddle class during day one of competition Thursday. The longtime partnership between the two truly shone through during the over-fences round, as the riders were challenged with the spacious ring and long lines, but the pair stepped up to secure an over-fences score of 256.170. Morrell and Lumiere ultimately won the over-fences class, achieving the champion title and winning the Leading 2020 Medium Green Welsh Pony.

Susannah Morrell and Lumiere

The 2021 USEF Pony Finals, presented by Honor Hill Farm, will continue Saturday at 7 am in the Rolex Ring with the Regular Medium Pony Hunter Over Fences. The day will conclude in the Claiborne Ring with the highly anticipated Jumper Individual Final. The conclusion of the 2021 USEF Pony Finals will take place Sunday at 7 am with the USEF Pony Medal Final.

FROM THE WINNERS CIRCLE

Lillian Geitner – Medium Green Hunters

On Farewell:
“His barn name is Welli and we imported him pretty recently. I had been showing him in the medium green’s and then eventually we moved up to the mediums. For Pony Finals this year we decided to do the medium green division.”

On her plan for the over fences:
“Basically just to stay calm and not be worried about winning. I wanted to go in and have fun and it went well. I was sitting in 7th before the over fences and that made things easier and less pressure.”

On being trained by her parents:
“It is difficult to train with my parents. Sometimes we fight and disagree but in moments like this, it is really nice to have my parents by my side.”

On coming to Pony Finals:
“This is my fourth year at pony finals and this is my best result so far. I like that all of my friends are here and it is just really fun.”

Kathy Geitner – Trainer / Mother

On Farewell:
“My husband found him in France. He has some connections over there that we buy a lot of horses from. They knew we had a daughter and asked if we would ever wanted a pony so we had them send us a video and we liked what we saw and imported him at the end of February 2021. He did his first horse show in Ocala and he qualified for Pony Finals at the first show where he competed in the Medium Green’s. We are probably planning to sell or lease him because she is moving on to the horses now and this might be her last Pony Finals because she is getting long legs.”

On training her daughter:
“It is an interesting dynamic but because I have been training her since day one, I feel I know what it takes to get her to the ring and I know how she operates mentally. I always try to set her up in the best mental state possible to go in and perform. We have not been training hard this week, just trying to stay relaxed. She did the golf cart parade yesterday, and ended up in the top 10 so that was awesome and we could have gone home with that and been happy. We have been trying to keep everything low key and low stress and I think it worked in our favor because she walked in with a lot of confidence. Also, having a great pony helps too, one that you can have a lot of faith in to get the job done.”

On Pony Finals as a learning experience for young riders:
“I think just having the high-pressure situation and learning how to handle that championship format will serve her well whether she goes on to Derby Finals, or as a professional in the Green Incentive or Nations Cup. It is learning how to deal with the nerves and focus and take care of yourself to be as prepared as the pony is. I think it is a great learning experience for the kids in the maturity of the sport.”

Susannah Morrell – 2020 Medium Green Hunters

On Lumiere:
“I have had him for about a year and a half now. I would say I know him pretty well now. We got him from Wellington during COVID-19 last year and we have just worked a lot on consistency since getting him. My trainer [Bibby Farmer] and my mom [Shannon Morrell] have just helped so much in getting him to where he is today.”

On the journey to Pony Finals:
“When we got him, he was only six. He was obviously younger, which was a big part of it. We had to work on being together with our pace and getting our canter to where we wanted it. We needed to work on getting comfortable in the ring. He had to learn how to relax and just be happy with where he is.”

On winning at Pony Finals:
“I have never won champion at Pony Finals before. It is very exciting and this is my third year coming here.”

On plan going in:
“My plan was to have him really with me and to have a great pace going to jump one. We needed to organize in the turns and get up the longer lines. Just a lot of organizing around the turns, since the ring is obviously pretty spacious.”

RESULTS

Medium Green Pony Overall
1. Farewell / Lillian Geitner / Daniel Geitner / 1009.480
2. Mapleside Forget Me Not / Olivia Sweetnam / Grace Debney / 1004.020
3. Tristan / Clara Propp / Aquitaine Equine / 993.320
4. Somermist Cassiopeia / Willow Mary Wright / Latraviota Wells / 970.780
5. Bare Necessities / Lily Epstein / Lily Epstein / 950.760
6. Sparkle / Elliena Apollo / Delia Alvarez-Apollo / 945.740
7. Haymar’s Sassafrass / Madison McHugh / Madison McHugh / 939.740
8. Questionable Encounter / Hailey Salita / Hailey Salita / 937.020
9. Clovermeade Somebunny’s Crush / Helena Timpany / Rabbit Hill Farm / 930.800
10. Shenandoah Moonspinner / Luna Valobra / Luna Valobra / 924.220
11. Farnley Blew Kisses / Rylie True / Amanda Gerdts / 924.160

2020 Medium Green Pony Over Fences
1. Lumiere / Susannah Morrell / Susannah Morrell / 999.900
2. Royal Street / Madeline Rubin / Briar Field Farm, LLC / 928.570
3. Greymeadows Vogue / Parker Howard / Parker Howard / 910.050
4. Pine Creek’s Apolo / Sophie Sobkowiak / Sophie Sobkowiak / 904.840
5. Clovermeade Funny Side Up / Helena Timpany / Rabbit Hill Farm / 898.390
6. Wisewood Mr. Fizzle / Alexandra Lynn Willner / Alexandra Lynn Willner / 894.170
7. Gayfields Hi Heels and Diamonds / Ella Murphy / Stephanie Cook / 869.530
8. Shine On Me / Kaitlyn Swinnerton / Mary Hendri / 858.730
9. Aalsmeer’s Nancy Drew / Ryley Kurau / Stephanie Rigert / 839.010
10. Shenandoah Triscuit / Piper Kennedy / Piper Kennedy / 797.060
11. Middleton / Clayton Farrell / Over The Hill Farm / 765.080

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