Temecula, Calif. – Oct. 21, 2021 – The crowning of division champions began early Thursday morning in the Grand Hunter Arena at the Temecula Valley National Fall Week II, presented by Interactive Mortgage. The first tricolor up for grabs was in the Performance 3’3” Hunter championship. After two days of stiff competition and five rounds, Nick Haness and Crowd Pleaser emerged victorious over the talented field. More champions were named following shortly thereafter in the combined Green 3’3” and 3’6” Hunter division as Molly Brock and Charismo claimed the top honors, while Haness and Reese’s claimed their sixth and final division championship title of the series in the Performance 3’6” Hunter.
Performance 3’3” Hunter competitors were the first to take to the ring early Wednesday morning. Multi-division champion Nick Haness led the pack heading into Thursday’s final rounds with West Coast Equine Partners, LLC’s 14-year-old Selle Francais gelding, Crowd Pleaser. The duo took home a first and second place ribbon in the over fences portion one day prior, giving them a fighting chance at the coveted tricolor to bring their two-week series champion and reserve champion total to eight. The experienced chestnut gelding certainly lived up to his name, showcasing an eager expression over the fences and flowing movement around the winding course to earn two second-place finishes Thursday with scores of 83 in the final over fences round and 82 in the handy round. Though they were bested in both classes Thursday morning by Chad Mahaffey and Paperboy, who scored an 85 and 87, Haness’ consistency over the course of the two days paid off as the duo took home the championship title.
Mahaffey and Julia Greenspan’s seven-year-old Zangersheide gelding, Paperboy, were sitting in a close second behind Haness following the second day of competition Thursday. He and Paperboy took two first-place ribbons Thursday in the final over fences round, scoring an 85 and 87 in the handy. Their efforts were not enough to claim the top honor, but they would prove high enough to earn the reserve championship position.
The action continued as the combined Green Hunter division took their turn in the spotlight. Brock and her own six-year-old Holsteiner gelding, Charismo, took the championship title while Chad Mahaffey and Julia Greenspan’s seven-year-old Zangersheide gelding, Paperboy, came in a close second settling for reserve champion. Performance 3’6” Hunter competitors were the last to take to the Grand Hunter Arena. Closing out professional hunter classes for the series, Haness pulled off his second tricolor of the day and eighth overall division title over the course of the two-week series with West Coast Equine Partners, LLC’s Resse’s.
Competition at the final week of the Temecula Valley National Fall Series takes a fun and exciting turn Friday, October 22, with the $5,000 NEE Hunter/Jumper Team Challenge to be held in the Grand Prix Arena in full costume. Top international competition comes to a dramatic conclusion Saturday with the $10,000 NEEd for Speed Derby sponsored by Multi Radiance Super Pulsed Lasers and the highlight event of the week, the $50,000 Grand Prix, sponsored by First National Bank of Pasco, held concurrently with the $1,000 U25 Jumper Classic sponsored by Equine Discounts.
FROM THE WINNERS CIRCLE
Nick Haness – Performance 3’3” Hunter Division Champion
On Crowd Pleaser:
“Crowd Pleaser is a 14-year-old seasoned jumper turned hunter. He had a big career in the jumper ring before he became a hunter. He is sensational and he did awesome today.”
On Crowd Pleaser’s personality:
“He very much chooses the people he likes and luckily I’m one of them. He’s a really funny horse and he also loves his owner, Joe Ellis from West Coast Equine Partners. He has been a true winner for us from day one.”
On the Nilforushan Equisport Events’ Temecula Valley Fall National Series:
“The course was really fun and the handy was great. The trot jump was really quite an element which can sometimes be a struggle for us, but it worked out really well in our favor and we ended up being champion.”
On future plans with Crowd Pleaser:
“He is just a lovely horse to show, so we’re gonna go to [the Marshall & Sterling Insurance/USHJA National Championships in Las] Vegas this year and try to win the derby there.”