World’s Championship Horse Show First Time Exhibitor and Trainer Presentation
Published Date: Aug 28, 2019
The Kentucky State Fair World’s Championship Horse Show, along with the American Saddlebred Horse Association was honored to welcome over 150 excited first time exhibitors and trainers to the arena Tuesday evening for the First Time Exhibitor and Trainer presentation. The week was action packed with large classes and outstanding horses and our first timers were ecstatic to be a part of it all.
“I am most looking forward to riding on the green shavings with my dream horse, the sound of the crowd, lights in the arena, and the air felt brushing across my face as we trot down the shoot into Freedom Hall,” Sarah Hazuda, Kentucky
“I have been showing Saddlebreds since the early 70s, and showed once at Lexington but never Louisville. At 60 years old this year I finally have the chance to do it, and my parents are both still here to see me do it. Whether I place or not, I am just very happy they can be here to see me do it after all they’ve sacrificed over the years so I could show this amazing breed!” Karen Comer, North Carolina
“Louisville is the pinnacle of the Saddlebred and Hackney show world. It is on my bucket list and I get to check it off at age 57.” Melissa Carpenter, New Hampshire
“I am excited because this is the culmination of 28 years of hard work and dedication to horses. I considered showing in previous years, but I always doubted myself or my horse. This year I decided you only live once and to go for it. It is an honor and privilege to show any horse at any level, but showing an American Saddlebred on the green shavings is truly a long time dream come true for me.” Sarah Thomas, Illinois
“Having the opportunity to show in the WCHS for the first time has been my dream for many years. Now that I Have made it I could not be more ecstatic! The entire experience and people have been amazing! Having the opportunity to ride into that ring and experience that feeling of riding on the green shavings for the first time was surreal. I am beyond lucky to share the experience with my horse who has been there with me, working hard and never letting me down. It means so much to ride out of that ring, no matter the ribbon or the ride, and see how much all of our hard work has paid off. I couldn’t imagine a better first time in that ring without my heart horse and all of the people who have been by our sides along the journey. The memories I have made at the WCHS are ones I will cherish forever and share many times over! And, I have made friends along the way I will always stay in touch with.” Devin Sell, Kentucky
Attendees were greeted by ASHA leadership Terri Dolan, David Mount and Martin Schaffel, and received a first timer ribbon, WCHS poster, and small keepsake bag of green shavings. The ASHA First Time Exhibitor and Trainer presentation was created in 2012 as a way to honor and recognize those making their first trip to the green shavings in Louisville. Thank you to our First Time Exhibitor and Trainer ribbon sponsor Independent Equine Agents, and to Howie Schatzberg and Doug Shiflet for rotating years on capturing this special moment. A free download of this photo can be found at https://www.howardschatzbergphoto.com/. Also thank you to Richfield Video for capturing the highlights of the presentation available here!
Also, this year in addition to hosting the presentation, the ASHA enhanced the WCHS First Timers Program and brought you our "First Timers Features" on social media to share the diverse Saddlebred Stories of these newcomers ASB Dreams Journey. The ASHA celebrates these American Saddlebred lovers dedication and passion for the breed as they have traveled the path to the breed’s biggest stage, the Kentucky State Fair’s World’s Championship Horse Show! These daily spotlights brought great celebration from all levels of the American Saddlebred community. Check out the First Timers Features and First Timers Video Features to hear why these new comers love the breed and were excited to be on the green shavings!