2019 ERCHA/NRCHA Autumn Show

Markus Schopfer & Oh Cay MC Markus Schopfer & Oh Cay MC Dead Or Alive Photo
October 27, 2019


“With twice as many entries compared to last year, the 2019 edition of the ERCHA/NRHA Autumn Show is already a success!” said Otto De Fazio, vice president of the European Reined Cow Horse Association (ERCHA). Held at the Palacittà Travagliato Cavalli arena, the event open to 4- and 5-year-old horses shown two-handed in a snaffle bit or hackamore, offered three days of intense competition. The highlight was, of course, the Autumn Show along with the ancillary NRCHA approved classes, ERCHA and Regional classes and the determination of who would bring home the ERCHA year-end titles.

Markus Schöpfer & Oh Cay MC Strike Again!

Opening the Autumn Show on Friday, October 25, was the rein work for the five divisions: $2,500-added Open, $500-added Non Pro, $200-added Limited Open, $100-added Intermediate Non Pro and Novice Amateur. In the Open division, it was all about Markus Schopfer and Silverstone Ranch’s Oh Cay MC, a 4-year-old stallion by Metallic Cat out of Oh Cay Meriah, who posted the highest score: a 73.5. Alessandro Coppari, riding Me To The Light, a 2015  mare sired by Me To The Bar out of Lynx Star Light, owned by Andrea Ambrogiani, scored a 71.5 to top the Limited Open division.

The herd work filled Saturday and once again, Schopfer and Oh Cay MC left their mark posting a 73 score which put them on top of the Open standings with a 146.5 composite. Christophe Seiler and his flashy 5—year-old palomino stallion Chics Smart Colonel (Mr Colonel Smart x Chics Olena Baby) equalled Schopfer’s 73 score which brought the duo to lead the Limited Open with a 144.5 composite and take second place in the Open. The cow work on the last day of competition determined who would take home the Open Championship and, with a fierce run down the fence, Italy’s Schopfer and the talented stallion did not disappoint and once they left the arena, another 73 score appeared on the board bringing their composite to a 219.5 and the title. “What more can I say about this incredible little horse,” said Schopfer. “He’s never let me down, he’s ridden me to so many titles this year, including the Futurity at Americana, and is simply amazing.” Schopfer took over the reins from Todd Crawford this year after purchasing the horse from him last year at the NRCHA Futurity. “His bloodlines don’t lie, and neither does he in the show pen,” he added with a smile.

With a 68 score down the fence, Seiler settled for third place in the Open division and reserve honors in the Limited Open behind Andrea Santini and Meradas Dual Cat (Hydrive Cat x Blue Boons Lil Sue). With the 4-year-old mare owned by Soc. Agr. Le Fattorie di Matilde, Santini lay down an impressive cow work paid back with a 73 which brought his composite to a 213  (herd work, 72; rein work, 68; fence work, 73) and the Limited Open Championship as well as Open Reserve honors. “The last time we showed was at the Futurity and things didn’t go quite as planned,” said Santini. “Since then she’s matured a lot, she did really well on the cows and she is becoming more and more solid. I’m very happy with the way she performed and I must give credit to the great ground and the super organization.”

Piersanti and Bar Baby Stylish sweep the Autumn Show Non Pro and Intermediate Non Pro Championships

Marco Piersanti & Bar Baby Stylish - Photo by Dead Or Alive

Taking the rein work lead in the Non Pro and Intermediate Non Pro divisions with a 72 score on the first day of competition were Marco Piersanti and his Bar Baby Stylish, a 4-year-old mare by More Than Stylish out of Resketta. The two went on to post a 69.5 in the herd work and closed their performance with a 70.5 in the cow work. Their 212 composite was enough to take home both the Non Pro and Intermediate Non Pro Championships! “My trainer, Alessandro Coppari, showed her at the Americana in Augsburg, Germany, and after that, we decided that I would show her here,” said Piersanti. “She showed great in the reining: in the herd work she was there with me and I had fun and in the fence work I put my heart into it and she put…two hearts! I had a whole load of fun. Now she will take a well-deserved rest and then we’ll make the show season plans. In the meantime I would like to thank ERCHA for the great work and organization!”

When Eliane Gfeller rode her 6-year-old stallion Chics Smart Lover (Smart Chic Olena x Ellevi Love Jac) to a 70.5 to take the lead in the Novice Amateur rein work, little did she know that at the end of the show the Championship would be theirs with a 209 composite after performing to a 66 in the herd work and a 72.5 in the cow work. If that wasn’t enough, the young Swiss rider also rode CR Rosie The Riveter (Woody Be Tuff x Gypsy Rose Rey), a 4-year-old mare owned by her mother Kaethi Gfeller, to the Non Pro and Intermediate Non Pro Reserve Championships.


ERCHA/NRCHA Ancillary Action 

  • Winning the $300-added ERCHA/NRCHA Open Hackamore was the team made up of Markus Schopfer and the rising star Oh Cay MC. "This was supposed to be more of a schooling class but since he was doing so well, I just let him do his [great] thing!" said Schopfer. Once again, the duo rode to the top of the standings with a 145.5 composite score (71.5 Rein Work, 74 Fence Work). 
  • Taking the $250-added ERCHA/NRCHA Non Pro Bridle win was 14-year-old Leni Bartmann of Germany riding her own Smart Little Theo, an 11-year-old Paint Horse gelding sired by Smart Flying Colors out of Honey Be Smart. The duo closed with a 141 composite score (rein work 69; fence work 72). "I've had 'Theo' since 2014 and this is our second year going down the fence. He's absolutely the best!" she said. “I really did not expect to win this class and I am thrilled; everything went as planned. When you go down the fence you never know the outcome since there are so many variables but he was really good, especially on the cows. He is very experienced! ERCHA is like a family for me, all the people are so good and it’s always fun. I cannot wait to show Theo again next year."
  • It was all about France in the $300-added ERCHA/NRCHA Open Two Rein where Marine Richard rode her own GS Top On Whizard, a 6-year-old gelding by Sail On Top Whizard out of Miss Tari Jez, to the highest step of the podium after closing with a 146 composite score (rein work 72.5; fence work 73.5 ). "This horse is amazing," said Richard. "I got him in his 3-year-old year and he was a reining horse at the time. I started working him with Markus and we realized that he was good on the cows, so we turned him into a cow horse! Today he was just great; in the rein work his spins were amazing and in the fence work he was incredible…the first fence was really good, never felt him like that, he was with me all the way. I love showing at the ERCHA shows: the organization is great, the ground was special and the cows were perfect!” The pair also took home the ERCHA Open Two Rein Regional Final title.
  • Italian Davide Maria Becchio and Master N Smoke, a 2014 gelding sired by Master Kaweah out of Rum N Smoke he owns, won the $100-added ERCHA/NRCHA Non Pro Two Rein with a 121.5 composite score (rein work 60, fence work 61.5). “We didn’t post a very high score but considering this is our first show together, I am very happy,” said Becchio about his horse trained by Schopfer. “I’ve been riding him since May, but the feeling between us is good. Outside the arena everything is easy, but once we show, emotion and variables come into play and I have to learn to handle these. I truly look forward to the 2020 season, and hope to be able to show outside Italy too.” 
  • The $600-added ERCHA/NRCHA Open Bridle winners were once again the ‘dream team’ made up of Markus Schopfer and his 17-year-old stallion Peptos Lil Bingo (Peptoboonsmal x Conchita Gay Bingo). The duo won with a 142.5 composite score (rein work, 71.5; fence work, 71). “There isn’t much left to say about this great horse,” said Markus. “He just proves himself over and over again!
  • Tomas Barta and Sugars Smartest Lena (Honky Tonk Player x Sugars Doc Tari) took top honors in the $100-added ERCHA/NRCHA Limited Open Bridle with a 140.5 composite score ( rein work, 69.5; fence work, 71).

For complete results click here

Provided by Simona Diale, International Horse Press

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