Top riders in the Eastern Kansas Horseman’s Association (EKHA) were recognized at the recent 2018 year end awards banquet in Salina.
Horses are the essential ingredient in horse show successes although handler’s horsemanship abilities are just as vital for a winning team.
Hands down undeniably top EKHA horse this year was Peppy owned and ridden by the Mark Wallace family.
Peppy was the Highpoint Horse with Mark, Sierra and Brooke Wallace as well as Megan Poole riding him.
An all-around performance mount, Peppy also received the most prestigious title as the Super Horse of the year’s circuit shows. The Wallace family competes for the Mitchell County Riders club.
Again, any top horse must be shown with handler’s skill-matching abilities to be a champion. Thus, most significant are those honored as highpoint horse and rider units.
Sara Prochaska of the Mitchell County Riders and her mount Jose’ claimed the senior division championship of that competition.
Karlee Thrush rode Red to be the junior highpoint horse and rider unit award winner.
Traveling memorial trophies are annually presented in a wide range of categories in remembrance of deceased EKHA riders.
Of course, each award recipient has personal prejudice of their significance, but horseshow’s future depends on the younger generation. Therefore, special recognitions went to four top youth riders in memory of EKHA organizer, longtime leader and participant Rosie Clymer.
The junior girl most improved rider is Kennedy Gibbs, and Grant Slough is the junior boy most improved rider.
Sportsmanship awards went to Joy Clemence, junior girl, and Jayden Patry, junior boy.
Yearend top four riders in all performance and speed events in seven age group divisions received plaques verifying their placings.
Buckles were presented to the highpoint rider and the reserve competitor in each division.
Highpoint youth six and under was Grant Slough with reserve going to Riggin Parker. Clayton Strunk was third and Ace Schneider ranked fourth in that division.
Shea Augustine accepted the youth seven to nine yearend highpoint buckle with the reserve award going to Layla Pickering. Dawn Strunk was third, and Witt Keesecker, fourth.
Highpoint youth 10-13 rider was Karlee Thrush and Lane Svoboda was reserve, followed by Jayden Patry, and Rylee Noyes, respectively.
EKHA Queen Ellie Wiles was the youth 14 to 18 highpoint rider. The Patry sisters, Nichole, Michelle and Heather followed in respective order.
The sister team of Brooke and Sierra Wallace placed first and second respectively in the adults 19 to 40 category.
Sara Prochaska was the highpoint 41 to 60 rider, and Bethena Hemphill was reserve.
Many times senior division champion Ron McDonald again claimed the 61 and over highpoint buckle with reserve to Frank Buchman.
Mitchell County Riders was named the highpoint club. Following in order were Salina Silver Spurs, Sand Springs Saddle Club and Blackjack Saddle Club.