Team Morgan Wins International Saddle Seat Equitation Competition
RELEASE: August 25, 2009
AUTHOR/ADMINISTRATOR: By the American Morgan Horse Association
Team Morgan was the Gold-medal winner as overall high-point team at the Saddle Seat Equitation International Event that took place at Cash Lovell Stables in Winston-Salem, NC, August 17-18. Competing against a team from South Africa and an American Saddlebred team, seven riders from each team rode using World Cup rules. Reserve team honors went to the South African team and third went to the Saddlebred team.
Competing for Team Morgan were Jordan Cusumano of Brighton, MI; Gaetana D'Alesio-Spina of Mendon, MA; Kimberly Forster of Fall City, WA; Nena Marlin of Brunswick, ME; Rachel Menard of Walpole, MA; Sarah Shimmer of Marshall, MI; and Emma Ziemer of Sheboygan Falls, WI. Morgan trainer Sandy Sessink of South Lyon, MI, served as the Team's coach, and Jennifer Mason of Lehighton, PA, was assistant coach.
In addition to the Team Gold medal, Cusumano was the overall Individual Gold-medal winner and Rachel Menard was the overall Bronze medalist. The three-member equitation judging panel was comprised of Betsy Boone, Liz McBride-Jones, and John Whalen.
Following Monday's competition, the teams visited Pete and Gael Jaeger's Flintlock Farms in Chapel Hill for dinner. At Pete's Pizza Pavilion, Chef Pete made to order individual pizzas for attendees in his outdoor pizza oven.
"AMHA is so appreciative to Cash and Parker Lovell for their generosity and assistance in hosting this event," said AMHA Executive Director, Julie Broadway. “Many thanks to all the Lovell barn ambassadors, parents, and the local community that turned out to cheer on the teams. It was wonderful to have a packed house for both days with over 100 in attendance Tuesday for the finals and the awards ceremony.”
Event coordinator Cindy Mugnier added, "The Saddle Seat Equitation International event held at Cash Lovell Stables was a huge success. The three competing teams, Team Morgan, Team CLS, and the South African Junior World Cup Team showed the world what horsemanship and sportsmanship are all about. It was an honor to be involved and a joy to witness first hand.
"The members of Team Morgan were an amazing group of girls," Mugnier continued. "They were accomplished horsewomen, sportmanslike competitors, and fabulous ambassadors for the Morgan breed and their country."
Team Morgan will continue its fundraising efforts for future international equitation competitions.