Temecula, Calif. – April 28, 2021– Riders eagerly descended upon the Grand Hunter Arena Wednesday, April 28, for the opening day of competition at the Temecula Valley National Premier II, presented by Interactive Mortgage. Marisa Metzger and Cavito 2 were dressed to impress in the High Performance 3’9” Hunter adding a blue ribbon to their collection. Also sitting confidently ahead of the pack was Wendy Lee Thompson and Silver Moon 33 who led the field during the first day of the Green 3’6” Hunter division.
Coming off of an impressive seventh-place finish during the Temecula Valley National Premier I’s $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, sponsored by Desert International Horse Park, Metzger was eager to add another tricolor to her list of accomplishments at Galway Downs. Piloting EmmaBorders’ 12-year-old Holsteiner gelding, Cavito 2, the Coloradan put in two textbook rounds. The experienced international derby horse impressed the judges with his expressive gates and elegant jumping style, taking home a blue ribbon.
Thompson kicked off her first week of competition with a bang taking an early lead in the Green 3’6’’ Hunter division. She and Leigh Vosseller’s 10-year-old Warmblood gelding, Silver Moon 33, showcased their style and scope in both over fences rounds. Their efforts caught the judges’ eyes ensuring two first-place ribbons. The duo sits in a comfortable lead heading into Thursday’s championship.
Hunter competition will continue Thursday, April 29 at 8:20 a.m. in the Grand Hunter Arena with the championship crowning of the Green Hunter 3’6” division, followed by the return of the Performance Hunter 3’3″ division.
FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE
Marisa Metzger – Current leader of the High Performance 3’9” Hunter
On competing at the Temecula Valley National Premier II:
“This is our first year coming to Galway Downs. We are from Colorado so for us to come out here for two weeks is a great option. Our clients really loved it here last week and the area is so nice. We are enjoying the California sun and the really nice facility, and having a good time. Now that we have come I am sure we will do it again!”
On riding in the newly installed footing in the Grand Hunter Arena:
“I did not experience the grass in the Grand Hunter Arena, but this ring is so nice to ride in. The footing is great, the horses jump well, and it is very level. It is really nice because then you are not dealing with uphills and downhills. It is lovely to ride in such a big ring for the hunters since you don’t see that very much. You can tell they really put a lot of thought into making it a nice experience.”