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Shawn Casady Claims Opening Day Victory at 76th Annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show

Katy, TX – The 76th-annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show opened on Wednesday, March 23, attracting top hunter and jumper riders from across the country to the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in Katy, TX, for three weeks of competition, running March 23 – April 10, 2022.

Among the first-day winners were Daniel Bedoya and Caylee PCH in the 1.25m Open Jumpers, Nicolas Gamboa and Dreamgirl 22 in the 1.40m Open Jumpers, and Shawn Casady and Ekstra MF in the 1.35m Open Jumpers.

On their way to the win, Casady and Ekstra MF, owned by Rabbit Root Stables, LLC, were one of 16 entries to contest the Manuel Esparza-designed track. Of the 16 horses, 12 advanced to the jump-off for a race against the clock, with Casady turning in the winning time of 31.276 seconds.

Second place with a time of 32.251 seconds went to Frank Owens and Just Jeremy ES, owned by DS Holdings LLC. Rounding the top three after stopping the clock in 32.663 seconds were Nicolas Gamboa and Contan, owned by October Hill Farm.

Shawn Casady and Ekstra MF. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

For Casady, the victory marks a great return to the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, after having been away from the horse show for nearly a decade. 

“It’s great here; it’s a good change of scenery,” said Casady, 27, who is currently based in California. “I’ve always been friends with a lot of these people down here because they travel quite a bit as well. I see Christian [Heineking] a lot out in California. I grew up seeing Martien [van der Hoeven] and Matt [Cyphert] and all those guys in Kentucky and all of that. So, it’s nice to be here and see everybody on their home turf! The footing’s great in the ring, and it’s a horse-focused venue, so it’s pretty user-friendly. The horses seem to like it; they’re comfortable here.”

Casady is also getting comfortable with Ekstra MF after just partnering with the 8-year-old Selle Français stallion in January of this year.

“I’m really, really looking forward to continuing to work with him,” said Casady. “He is probably one of the most athletic horses that I’ve ever ridden just all around. He’s scopey, light on his feet, has the stride; he just has all of those pieces. It’s a cool feeling. He felt super confident and rideable today – exactly how I wanted him to ride.”

The Pin Oak Charity Horse Show features three weeks of top hunter, jumper, and American Saddlebred competition to benefit the Texas Children’s Hospital. Highlight events of Week I include a $30,000 United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) International Hunter Derby on Friday, March 25, and the $30,000 Third Coast Bank Pin Oak Charity Grand Prix on Saturday, March 26 at 7 p.m.

General spectator admission is free for all events. Learn more about the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show by visiting www.PinOak.org, and find the horse show on Facebook and Instagram for the most recent updates. To purchase competition photos, visit www.AndrewRyback.com.

Pin Oak Protocols: Horse Health & Biosecurity Update

Katy, TX – The health and safety of the horses competing at The Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, to be held March 23 – April 10, 2022, is of the utmost importance to the horse show staff. With that in mind, and after consultation with US Equestrian and the federation’s veterinary advisors, the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show will be implementing the equine biosecurity protocols outlined below.  

Protocols for Possibly Exposed Horses

In following the US Equestrian return-to-competition protocols, and in taking additional precautions to ensure horse safety, any horse that has been on the Desert International Horse Park (DIHP) or Rancho Murieta showgrounds, or been exposed to horses that were on the show grounds, since February 20, 2022, must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Each horse must have a negative EHV-1 PCR test or tests, even if the horse has quarantined for 28 days without symptoms. Tests will be required to be presented as follows:  
    • Two negative PCR tests taken within 14 days of the possible exposure, with one taken on day 7 and one taken on day 14
    • OR one negative PCR test taken on day 21 since the possible exposure
    • Day 0 is considered to be the day the horse left the venue at either DIHP or Rancho Murieta.
  • These horses will also be required to have a health certificate (CVI) with an inspection date within seven (7) days prior to their arrival at Pin Oak that states that they have not had an elevated temperature or been treated for issues related to herd health within the last 45 days.
  • All exposed horses must have a USEF EHV-1 Return to Competition Declaration and Testing Result Form completed online by an owner or agent, as well as completing a USEF Competition EHV-1 Declaration Form. The latter form will be available at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center for competitors to complete when they arrive at a show. This form can also be filled out in advance of arriving at the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show and submitted upon arrival.

Protocols for All Horses at the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show

The following protocols will be implemented for all horses competing at Pin Oak, regardless of where the horses may be arriving from.

  • All horses who have not been exposed to horses participating in competitions at DIHP or Rancho Murieta will be required to have a health certificate issued within 21 days prior to their arrival date that states that they have not been treated for an elevated temperature or issues related to herd health for at least 30 days.
  • Every horse, showing or non-showing, must have a USEF Competition EHV-1 Declaration Form signed by its owner or agent. This form can also be filled out in advance of arriving at the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show and submitted upon arrival.
  • All horses must check in between the hours of 7 a.m. and 6 p.m., unless prior arrangements are made. 
  • Paper copies of health papers must be presented to the check-in personnel upon arrival.  No emailed or phone copies will be accepted.

For any additional information or questions, please contact Amy Uniss-Coleman by phone at 281-978-0767 or by email at auniss@gswec.com. For more information on the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, please visit www.pinoak.org.

Tokaruk Show Stables Takes Top Honors at Pin Oak Charity Horse Show

Michael Tokaruk earned the Leading Jumper Rider Bonus at the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, pictured aboard My Lord Castanoo. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

RINGSIDE WITH THE PLAID HORSE

Michael Tokaruk and his Tokaruk Show Stables of Collierville, TN, clinched numerous top honors at the historic Pin Oak Charity Horse Show during the past three weeks, including the Leading Open Jumper Rider along with the $5,000 bonus!

The Pin Oak Charity Horse Show is known for its rich history, time-honored traditions, equestrian excellence, and extraordinary giving. As one of the oldest and most prestigious horse shows in the country, Pin Oak is also one of Houston’s unique social and fundraising events. Pin Oak has donated nearly $7 million dollars to support the healing of sick children and is committed to supporting the growth of Texas Children’s Hospital. Tokaruk Show Stables is honored to support the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show.

“This is our third time now at Pin Oak. We love coming here! They do such a good job and it goes to a great cause, it’s wonderful. There’s a lot of pomp and circumstance to the show and it just feels so much more special to show there,” said Tokaruk. “It was definitely a goal to win the Rider Bonus in coming here to Pin Oak. It’s a strong group of horses and riders in Texas. Everybody goes fast – I mean the speed limit in Texas is like 80 miles an hour so they all go fast! It’s a good group of riders so to come out on top after the three weeks is really meaningful. I owe it all to the horses first off, and then to everyone who supports me, the owners, the clients, the sponsors, the staff at the barn. Everybody does such a great job and makes my life as easy as it can be so it’s a real team effort.”

Tokaruk piloted his own My Lord Castanoo,a nine-year-old Belgian Warmblood by Nabab De Reve, to the 1.40m Open Jumper Championship during Week II and the reserve championship during Week I. The pair also earned a victory in the Venice Equestrian Tour $25,000 Grand Prix earlier in the season. Tokaruk is pleased with progress this green horse is making and enjoys bringing the horse up the ranks.

Michael Tokaruk and Diams De La Pomme scored the reserve championship in the 1.35m Open Jumpers. 

Diams De La Pomme, owned by Jean-Maurice Brahier, helped Tokaruk earn the Leading Jumper Rider title by winning the 1.35m jumper class and flying into second place in the $5,000 1.35m Speed Stake. The mare also took home the reserve championship in the division during Week II.

“Such a fun, sporty little mare,” said Tokaruk. “I’m so happy with her in our first show together! Thanks so much to owner Lauren Hough for sending such a nice horse to show and sell!”

Tokaruk racked up jumper points on Cameron Tokaruk’s D’Almgravin winning the 1.25m out of 40 horses and the Championship in both Week I and Week II.

Tokaruk is known for his ability to build confidence in horses and riders and takes time to bring them up to the next levels. His resume is filled with winning stories of horses he shows and sells to new owners, creating matches for success in the show ring. Clients love Tokaruk’s attention to detail and his ability to prepare them for the show ring. His program is consistent and clearly works.

Team Tokaruk

Brittany Kasprack and Gaesbekers Gabbertje added a reserve championship in the Low Amateur Jumpers to their resume. 

Team Tokaruk riders added plenty of ribbons to the tackroom banner as well. Brittany Kasprack, Olive Branch, MS, and Gaesbekers Gabbertje won the Low Amateur Jumpers and added the reserve championship tricolor to the Tokaruk Show Stables banner for Week II. Kasprack also rode Gambit to a victory in both the Ariat and THIS Adult Medal classes.

“[Gaesbekers Gabbertje] is relatively new to me. I got him in October,” explained Kasprack, who runs four chiropractic clinics. “He is kind of an expert and I am very much an amateur so he’s teaching me the ropes. I can’t even say his show name! He’s teaching me a lot, trying to make me brave. He’s only nine but he has done the 1.50m and I was doing the meter tens when I bought him. So we’ve now made it to the 1.20m so taking it slow.

Brittany Kasprack and Gambit winning the THIS Adult Medal. Photo Andrew Ryback Photography

“I’ve been riding with Michael for a little over a year now. When we go to the shows, the nice thing is it’s easy. With Michael, you’re doing so much more at home that when you go to the show, it’s literally, I’m not going to say it’s a joke by any means, but it’s a much lower difficulty level because we’ve already seen every single challenge they’re asking of us, and that’s a big thing. When you go out to the barn to ride your horse, even if it’s not a lesson day, it’s a working day. It’s not just oh, I’m gonna hack on a loose rein, I’m gonna be an amateur, like I’m just gonna drop my reins and ride around and have a good day! No, he’s not going to stand for that, so he’s going to make sure that you’re working all the time.“One of the nicest things about Michael’s barn is that he’s not so big that you’re just a number and he’s very personalized. I mean, they know everything about the animals, and I think that some of these barns – I see them with 30-40 horses at the show and that’s amazing, but you may not get that same one on one experience that you get in that smaller setting like Michael’s. I definitely feel very, very privileged to be a part of it.

Ava Hernandez and Cupid Shuffle won the $2,500 NAL Low Junior Jumper Classic. Photo Andrew Ryback Photography

Ava Hernandez,Overland Park, KS, and Cupid Shuffle, a 15-yer-old Dutch Warmblood, won the $2,500 NAL Low Junior Jumper Classic and ended up reserve champion for Week II!  Tokaruk won the 1.25m Open Jumper class on the veteran jumper on the opening day of the show. Cupid Shuffle is a horse Tokaruk is familiar with and says the horse is always game and fun to ride. Tokaruk is happy to work with the horse again and especially with the talented Hernandez in the irons.

Evie Jaeckle and TJC’s Taio Cruz took home top ribbons in the Amateur Owner Hunter division. Photo Andrew Ryback Photography
Evie Jaeckle and Clochard. Photo Andrew Ryback Photography

Evie Jaeckle from The Jaeckle Center won some top ribbons in the 1.20m Jumpers on Clochard and a second place finish in the $2,000 Amateur Adult Jumper Stake aboard TJC’s Lil Jon during Week II. Jaeckle, of Thompsons Station, TN, also rode TJC’s Taio Cruz in the 3’3” Amateur Owner Hunters 18-35 taking home first and second in the over fences, a third place in the Amateur Owner Hunter Classic and fourth in the Stake during Week I.  

Anna Marie Mayes and Balou Bailando won the Low Amateur Jumper Classic. Photo Andrew Ryback Photography
Anna Marie Mayes and Gambit took the top spot in the Platinum Performance Talent Search.

Anna Marie Mayes and Balou Bailando won the Low Amateur Jumper Classic and earned the championship honors as well. Mayes, 18, from Memphis, TN, also collected a blue ribbon in the Platinum Performance Talent Search on Gambit.

Mayes signed with Auburn University. 

Mayes recently signed with Auburn Equestrian for her college commitment. She will participate in the NCEA Equestrian program while completing her studies.

“All of her hard work and dedication to the sport is paying off!” said Tokaruk. “She is a great student, rider, and young lady. Everyone at Tokaruk Show Stables is excited to see her take her talents to this great Division 1 NCAA program.”

Avery DeYoung and Anna Mayes Among Equitation Winners at Pin Oak Charity Horse Show

Avery DeYoung and Landlysts Coquett, pictured in the Junior 15-17 Equitation. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

RINGSIDE WITH THE PLAID HORSE

BY EMILY RANDOLPH/RANDOLPHPR

Katy, Texas – April 11, 2021 – Three weeks of top competition at the 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show concluded on Sunday, April 11, with a full line-up of junior, children’s and pony classes at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in Katy, Texas.

Among Sunday’s equitation winners were Avery DeYoung of Houston, and Anna Marie Mayes of Memphis, Tennessee.

DeYoung, 16, earned her Sunday victory in the United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) 3’3” Jumping Seat Medal aboard Landlysts Coquett, owned by AS Texas.

“This is the first week that I’ve ever ridden him,” DeYoung said of the grey 16-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding. “He was really, really good. He was such a cool horse and so fun to ride. For the course today, it started off with an oxer, so I knew that I needed to get a pretty good canter to start. Once I did that, all the jumps rode up perfectly; the lines were just right out of stride.”

DeYoung has spent the past four to five years training with Peter Pletcher at PJP Farm in Magnolia, Texas. She also consistently catch rides horses – including Landlysts Coquett – for Samantha Buncher of Sky High Equestrian Center, also in Magnolia.

“I really like it because it grows my riding a lot,” said DeYoung of catch riding. “Whenever I get on a new horse, I have a little bit of a feel of what it could be like because I’ve ridden so many horses. I also have the opportunity to go in a lot of different classes, so that’s a lot of fun to get to do new and different stuff.”

Anna Marie Mayes and Gambit. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

As a nearby Houston-native, one thing that is not new to DeYoung is the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show. The high school sophomore first competed in the show roughly 10 years ago, and it’s been a favorite of hers every year since.

“I like Pin Oak because I have a lot of great memories,” said DeYoung. “I won my first championship on my pony, Bella, in short stirrup at Pin Oak when I was maybe 7, so it brings back a lot of great memories and a lot of good, fun times with all of my friends.”

For Mayes, this year marked her first visit to Katy, and to Pin Oak, but following a successful two weeks and a win in Sunday’s Platinum Performance/U.S. Equestrian (USEF) Show Jumping Talent Search, she plans to be back.

“What a great, great show!” said Mayes, who trains with Michael Tokaruk of Tokaruk Show Stables in Collierville, Tennessee. “They make it a great exhibitor and spectator show. For people who haven’t been, it’s a show you have to go to at least once. It was on my bucket list, so I can gladly say that I’ve checked it off, but it will definitely not be my last.”

Part of what made the show a standout for Mayes was her level of success with new horse, Gambit, her mount for Sunday’s Talent Search class.

“This has been his first show in the States,” said Mayes of the 10-year-old Brandenburg gelding that was recently imported by owner Brittany Kasprack. “We’re very much still getting to know each other.”

With no prior experiences to call on or expectations set with Gambit, Mayes went in with the sole goal of having a positive, enjoyable round, and it was mission accomplished.

Carlee McCutcheon and MTM Personal Assistant. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

“I haven’t done equitation in a little over a year, so we’re both kind of doing it together, which is fun,” said Mayes. “It was a great course this morning. There was a triple, and one of the great things about Gambit is that he stays so straight through the triple. It really allows me to focus on myself and my equitation, almost kind of, ‘sit still and look pretty.’ That’s definitely one of my favorite qualities about him – how straight he can stay in the in-and-outs and combinations.”

From Texas, Mayes will return home to Tennessee and will compete throughout the summer before heading to Auburn University in Alabama, where she will begin her freshman year and ride as a member of the school’s National Collegiate Equestrian Association team.

Sunday’s equitation schedule also included the WIHS Equitation Hunter and Jumper Phases and the Hamel NHS 3’3” Medal, with wins going to Carlee McCutcheon, Brooke Brombach and Peyton Addington, respectively.

To learn more about the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show by visiting www.PinOak.org, and find the horse show on Facebook here.

To purchase competition photos, visit www.AndrewRyback.com.

For additional coverage throughout the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show, follow The Plaid Horse on Facebook and Instagram.

Rowan Willis and Ashton Dakota Win Big in $100,000 Wells Fargo Pin Oak Grand Prix

Rowan Willis and Ashton Dakota won the $100,000 Wells Fargo Grand Prix on Saturday, April 10. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

RINGSIDE WITH THE PLAID HORSE

BY KRISTIN PITZER

Katy, Texas – April 10, 2021 – The stakes were high in the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show’s $100,000 Wells Fargo Grand Prix, held April 10 at the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in Katy, Texas. Thirty-one horses were slated to compete, and from the start, it was a battle against the clock, with Rowan Willis ultimately emerging victorious.

The third horse in the order, Ashton Dakota, ridden by Willis, was the first to jump a clear round within the time allowed. From that point on, it took another 20 horses before another team managed to jump around the course without knocking a rail down or taking a time penalty. That pair, Abracadabra WKT and Daniel Bedoya, who won Thursday night’s $25,000 Walter Oil and Gas Pin Oak Grand Prix, were the sole other duo to make it back for the jump-off round.

As Willis, of Ocala, Florida, went in for round two, he knew Bedoya would be riding behind him to give it his all. Despite the added pressure, Willis navigated Ashton Dakota to a clear second round in 34.539 seconds, and as he left the arena, he felt like he and the gelding had put forth their best effort. Bedoya started off well, but after two rails down, Willis secured the win.

“I’m feeling great,” Willis said. “My horse was fabulous tonight. He really tried for me, and he covered the ground well. It’s my first time jumping in Texas, so what a great way to start. I’ll have to come back!”

Rowan Willis and Ashton Dakota. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

Willis knew from walking the course that it was going to be difficult, as some of the distances were a little bit shorter and there was a tight time limit. He tried to just jump a clear round and make it a good experience for his horses.

“It wasn’t easy, but I thought it was a really good course,” Willis said of the track set by renowned course designer Michel Vaillancourt. “It’s $100,000, so we need to work for it.”

Willis and Ashton Dakota collected $30,000 for the win. The 2008 grey gelding has been owned in partnership by Willis and several of his owners since January.

“He’s relatively new, and he’s been getting better and better,” Willis said. “I’m really excited about him for the future. He just wants to jump, and he tries so hard. I really have some high hopes for him.”

In addition to Ashton Dakota, Willis had three other horses on the order of go. He landed in 16th with Ekita Eindeken Z with two rails down and took 24th with Wellington Grey Goose. The fourth horse was scratched.

With a time of 38.780 seconds, Bedoya and Abrakadabra WKT finished in second place, winning $22,000. The 2008 Holsteiner mare is owned by Monica Hanks. Taking third were Dollar Cash and Trapp O’Neal, whose one time fault kept them out of the jump-off. Placing fourth were Gatsby and Daisy Ford with two time penalties.

Daniel Bedoya and Abracadabra WKT. Photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

After his successful evening in Katy, Willis hopes to make the trip to Texas again in the future.

“It’s lovely to come to a show like this,” Willis said. “They put it on really well and looked after us. It was a great atmosphere, with a lovely, big arena. Thanks to the sponsors for putting it on. It was fun jumping tonight.”

The 75th annual Pin Oak Charity Horse Show wraps up on April 11. The event features three weeks of top hunter, jumper and American Saddlebred competition, benefitting the Texas Children’s Hospital.

Learn more about the Pin Oak Charity Horse Show by visiting www.PinOak.org, and find the horse show on Facebook here. To purchase competition photos, visit www.AndrewRyback.com.

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