Oct 2014 “KCDA Volunteers Rock at American Horsewoman’s Challenge”
Article written by Joan StibalI wish every member of KCDA could have been with us at the American Horsewoman’s Challenge at the Lazy E in Guthrie, Okla., the weekend of Oct. 3-5! It was awe-inspiring to see the 40-some women and their youthful horses tackle challenge after challenge in the variety of competitions; including, liberty, Cowboy Dressage, Xtreme Cowboy Race and culminating with the top 10 scoring competitors performing a freestyle ride. You couldn’t help but compare them with what your horse would do if faced with the stress of a three-day competition complete with the final timed event that included nine scary obstacles. Awesome!Our hardy band of KCDA volunteers played important roles: We set up the Challenge Court on Friday evening after the close of the last event; and yes, there was some sweat equity, mathematical calculations and scurrying around to “get ‘er done!” But when we left about 11 p.m., there was a pristine Challenge Court ready for Eitan Beth Halachmy and head judge Lyn Ringrose Moe when they gave contestants an introductory court “walk around” at 7 a.m. the morning of the Cowboy Dressage competition on Saturday.A back story: Missy Hood was Eitan’s demonstration rider for Cowboy Dressage. She and Sheryl Strathman(who brought a horse for Eitan to ride) had to have their horses up at the arena and warmed up by 7 a.m. Stalls at the Lazy E are a quarter mile down the hill from the area. It gets worse - when they got to the stalls to saddle up on Saturday, the lights were still off, so they saddled in the dark. And brrr, it was cold that morning! They got up to the arena well before 7, but the doors were locked. So there they were, sitting outside on fresh horses until the ring crew finally showed up. Eitan and his wife, Deb, had gotten in the building and they, too, were sitting in the dark reading with a flashlight until the lights came on.It was all uphill from there! CD put on an excellent competition, judged by Lynn and Martina Bone from California. Eitan gave another mini clinic after the lunch break and Missy Hood and “Red” gave a flawless performance to “Mack the Knife.”KCDA volunteers ran the event without a hitch – Rachel Zenger did the lion’s work of calling the tests, with assistance from Lisa Wengerof Stormwalker Ranch in Oklahoma. Cyndi Harris and Leslie Bordentended to adjusting the court all day, Sheryl Strathman and Joan Stibal scribed for the judges, Julie Vosberg shadowed the judging, Margo Twaddle, Zale Livengood and Kandi Buchwald managed the scoring. Nan Funkhauser, who was able to attend at the last minute, gave some critical input to setting up the corners on the Challenge Court the previous evening, and watched the CD competition from a judge’s perspective.Congratulations to Cindy Branham from Topeka, riding Osawin, a BLM mustang. Coming in at 11th place, Cindy was just one out of the leader board on the combined scores at the end of competition on Saturday. Way to rock, Cindy!! Soo close!The grand champion of the entire AHC competition was Jerusha Steinert of St. Paul, Minn., riding a blue roan Nakota horse called “Mesabi Warrior.” Jerusha was not afraid of speed, and her horse was as relaxed as he could be with it. Runner up was 19-year-old Hannah Catalino of Cardwell, Mont., riding a little black mustang called “Ace.” Third was Obbie Schlomof Canyon, Texas, riding “Radar.”Marcia Moore Harrison of Potlatch, Ida., and “Stretch” won the Cowboy Dressage competition.