Holiday Hunter Pace held by Clemson Eventing Team

Published 4:16 pm Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Donna Monagle, Becca and Barbara Richardson heading into the finish at the Clemson Eventing Team Hunter Pace and Trail Ride. (photo submitted)

The Western Carolina Hunter Pace Series continued Sunday, Dec. 4 with the Holiday Hunter Pace hosted by the Clemson Intercollegiate Eventing Team at Fant’s Grove.
The event had a slow start because no one was directing the parking before the pace began, but once the trailers were sorted out, the ride went off without a hitch. The college crew showed up with smiles and donuts and quickly sent the waiting equines on their way.
The weather was cool and overcast, just the type of day that horses love. The course was mainly wooded with only a few cleared areas, but there were a couple of dirt roads that lent themselves nicely for a brisk canter.
The Field Hunter Division had a slightly longer course than the Trail Rider Division. The trail started across a narrow but sturdily built bridge and went through the woods and over quite a few streams, which had more water than normally would be flowing thanks to the recent downpours. The footing, however, was good and helped along by the steps that were constructed before and after many of the fords, which helped to keep the approaches less slippery. There were some road crossings, mainly little used arteries, but a smiling Clemson face was manning every one to ensure the safety of the horses and riders as they crossed.
Toward the end of the course, the path continued down to the lake and along the shore where it was easy to see that more rain is desperately needed in this area. A few jumps were hauled in to provide some excitement for the hunter division crowd. These trails are mixed-use, so few natural obstacles can be left for the benefit of the horseback riders.
The ride had a nice finish through a field and up to the trailer parking lot. All proceeds went to fund the Clemson University Eventing Team.
Field hunter results
The winner of the Field Hunter Division was Stephanie Schulte of Tryon on Blue, her blue-eyed paint. They came in with a time of two hours, five minutes and 25 seconds, only one minute and 35 seconds too fast for the optimum time of two hours and seven minutes.
In second place was the team of Angelina LeGare from Easley, S.C. and Taryn Lorey from Piedmont, S.C. in two hours, one minute and 48 seconds. The third place team consisted of Brian and Carolyn MacCormack from Anderson, S.C. and Marie Solomon from Newry, S.C. with a time of two hours, 12 minutes and 31 seconds.
Gail Patton of Seneca and Debbie Thrasher from Anderson, S.C. came in fourth in two hours, 13 minutes and 14 seconds. Amy Gantt and Lisa Tyler, both from Seneca, S.C. were fifth in one hour, 49 minutes and 34 seconds. The sixth place team was Sarah Hendricks from Mills River, N.C. and Brittany Whitmire from Brevard, N.C., who hit the finish line in one hour, 49 minutes and 18 seconds.
The remainder of the Field Hunter Division out for a jaunt in the woods consisted of Baiba Bourbeau, Christina Chappell, Beatrice Lamb, Doug McMillan, Emily Mitchell, Thomas Pluemper, Vickie Smith and Sherry Wyatt.
Trail rider results
The calculated optimum time for the Trail Rider Division was one hour, 50 minutes, and 45 seconds. The big winners were Nancy Finkell, riding Kizzy, and Bobby Turner on his trusty steed, Danny. They are both from Spartanburg, S.C. and had a time of one hour, 49 minutes and 49 seconds, which was less than a minute too fast.
The second place team was Doug and Nicole Cobb from Reidville, S.C. with one hour, 51 minutes and 52 seconds as their time. Helen Elizabeth Atkins and Becca and Milton Mann, all from Greer, S.C. came in third at one hour, 53 minutes and 55 seconds.
Karen Brockway of Greenville, S.C. and Nancy Mason of Greer, S.C. won fourth place with a time of one hour, 47 minutes and 21 seconds. Ruth Ann DeHollander of Ware Shoals, S.C. rode into fifth place in one hour, 42 minutes and 48 seconds. Susan Melvin from Anderson, S.C. and Jan Smith of Columbus were the sixth place team in one hour, 58 minutes and 45 seconds. Jacky Hallenbeck and Laurel Watson earned an honorable mention for their finish, which was only 14 seconds away from the sixth place time.
The rest of the Trail Rider Division enjoying their day in Fant’s Grove were Victoria Bailey, Chris and Kelly Cannon, Brook and Ed Lominack, Peggy McMakin, Donna Monagle, Boots Plyler, Barbara and Becca Richardson and Terry Wyatt.
Events will pick up again in early January and continue straight through May after only a short break for the holidays. Check the website WCHPace.org for all upcoming events, news, articles, photos, placements and contact information.
Photographer Lou Smith captures the riders and their mounts as they fly over jumps, canter through the fields and ride the trails. Click on “Photos” on the website to view pictures.
For information on the Western Carolina Hunter Pace & Trail Ride Series email series coordinator Jan Smith at jan@wchpace.org or wchpace@windstream.net or call her at 828-894-8760.
– article submitted by Boots Plyler