Equine Journal Article
July 2009

The 2009 Gypsy Horse show season began on April 16-18 with the inaugural Feathered Horse Spring Classic (Shelbyville, TN). Seven GHA farms participated, and member farms provided the Supreme Champion in Halter, Champion Stallion in Halter, Reserve Champion in Performance, and Reserve Champion Gelding in Halter. The latter was bred by still another member farm, as was the Champion Mare in Halter. GHA also awarded its first High Point award and sash at the FHSC.

Westmoreland Farms of New York fielded the Supreme Champion in Halter, four-year-old Lucky. A grandson of Westmoreland’s senior stallion The Lottery Horse, Lucky had previously won three Reserve Championships. Lucky placed first in the Gypsy Stallions 3 & Over class from among 11 entries. Both he and Westmoreland Prince, who placed second in the Colts 2 Years & Under and first in the Bred by Owner classes, were shown by Westmoreland’s talented and flamboyant trainer, Bobby Wagner.

Villa Vanners’ blue roan stallion Dalcassian, who pinned in nine English, Western, and Dressage Suitability classes, was Reserve Champion in Performance. Dalcassian was one of eight VV horses present. Shown by Arnold and Lisa Warmels and Jessica Caldwell of Fryslan Valley Sport Horses, VV’s horses won a grand total of 26 ribbons out of 36 entries. Known for its emphasis on exotic colors, VV fielded horses making up a veritable rainbow of colors, including palomino (Clononeen Mull of Kintyre), buckskin (Taskin), and silver dapple (Sinead and Bullet).

Reserve Champion Gelding was Golden Signature Farm’s SR Just Bucking Around (“Buck”), bred by Lucky Charm Ranch. Desi Meurer and Mary Hart of GSF also showed two up-and-coming stallions: Golden Splash, a sabino silver dapple, and GSF Rosco, a rare appaloosa. Both pinned and wowed spectators in the Carriage Driving Pleasure class. Rosco, with his flashing black feather, was an audience favorite.

Blarney Stone Acres fielded the first recipient of a GHA High Point award. Three-year-old chestnut gelding Clononeen Rossa was the GHA High Point winner of the FHSC. An accomplished ride-and-drive gelding, he won based on his performance in halter, under saddle, and in harness. Rossa’s win demonstrates the growing importance of geldings in performance as this breed matures in the U.S.

The High Point prize consisted of $600 and a GHA sash. Rossa’s trainer and rider, Mary Jo Wicker of Full Circle Dressage, accepted the prizes on behalf of owners Steven and Lise McNamara. Among the first GH breeders to emphasize performance, they are fitting recipients of GHA’s first High Point award. Congratulations to the McNamaras and to Mary Jo, and thanks to the donors who made this generous award possible.

Shown by Robb and Julianne Wilson, Shamrock Farms’ three horses – Billy O’Brien, Silverado, and Swanky Lashes – collected seven first, two second, two third, and two fifth places out of fourteen entries. Of particular note was Billy O’Brien’s first in Carriage Driving Pleasure and Swanky Lashes’ first in English Pleasure WT against 11 competitors.

Two member farms fielded stallions from extremely valued bloodlines. Lucky Star Stables brought the striking Comanche, a Lob son, and The Pelton Vanners its Lion King son, D’Jango Jazz. The latter placed third in the crowded Stallions 3 & Over class and second in Ground Driving in Harness.

Also present were horses bred by GHA members. Two bred by Cielo Celeste Farm – Cici’s Princess Stowe and Cici’s Noble Lassie – were shown by Randy and Jacky Martin. Stillwater Farm fielded the Champion Mare in Halter, SFG Summer Rose, bred by member farm Silver Feather Gypsies. Summer also placed first in the North American Bred class.

Two class sponsorships were awarded by GHA and some of its members. Suzanne Leupold sponsored the popular Carriage Driving Pleasure Class won by Julianne Wilson of Shamrock, who received the $200 prize. Thanks to Suzanne and congratulations to Julianne for a fine performance against stiff competition.

Shamrock Farm also won first place in GHA’s other sponsored class, the Youth Rider Pleasure WT/WJ class. Kelsey Morgan on Swanky Lashes placed first, winning $50, Hidden Valley Farm’s Tyler LeVan placed second on Murdo Mackenzie, winning $35, and Caroline Jones on Friesian Gilad van Rosita placed third, winning $15. The $100 awarded for this class was from several anonymous donors whom GHA wishes to thank.

Some upcoming events in which GHA member farms plan to participate are BreyerFest in July and the Renaissance Gypsy Affaire, the Continental Divide Gypsy Horse Classic, and the Oregon State Fair Gypsy Horse Show in August. You’re invited to GHA’s website www.gypsyhorseassociation.org for details.

Mary Jo Wicker of Full Circle Dressage on Blarney Stone Acre's Rossa, proudly displaying
his GHA HIgh Point sash. Photo Courtesy of Blarney Stone Acres.

Mary Jo Wicker accepting the GHA High Point Award of $600 for Rossa,
a gelding owned by Blarney Stone Acres.

2009 Feathered Horse Spring Classic

2009 Feathered Horse Spring Classic

Stallion, Comanche, owned by Todd & Leslie Barnes of Lucky Star Stables

2009 Feathered Horse Spring Classic

Click HERE for a PDF of the actual Equine Journal article.

Westmoreland Lucky, Supreme Champion. Photo Courtesy of Westmoreland Farms.

Westmoreland Lucky, Supreme Champion. Photo Courtesy of Westmoreland Farms.

Westmoreland Lucky, Supreme Champion. Photo Courtesy of Westmoreland Farms.

Sandra Pelton with stallion, D'Jango Jazz, of The Pelton Vanners.

Sandra Pelton driving stallion, D'Jango Jazz, of The Pelton Vanners.

Handler, Rhonda Zeigler, from Old Mill Farm with one of their lovely Gypsy Horses.

Villa Vanners' stallion, Clonnoneen Mull of Kintyre, AKA "Romeo"

GSF Golden Splash, of Golden Signature Farm