Oliver Barker and Wilson compete during the 2019 Yukon Dressage Show on Sept. 1 in Whitehorse. Barker and Wilson were co-champions of the junior training level along with Amelia Frey and McDuff. (John Hopkins-Hill/Yukon News)

The mane event: Equestrians compete at the 2019 Yukon Dressage Show

“We had a nice and relaxed horse show.”

The Yukon equestrian community gathered for the 2019 Yukon Dressage Show at the Northern Tempo Equestrian Centre in Whitehorse on Aug. 31 and Sept. 1.

Hosted by the North Ridge Community Association, the show featured approximately two dozen riders competing in a handful of categories.

Trainer and coach Inge Sumanik said the show was the latest an event has been held in Whitehorse and that this summer’s schedule of events was a change from past years.

“This year we tried to provide a series of shows,” said Sumanik. “We had two open horse shows and we had a schooling show. This is the latest we’ve ever put on a horse show.”

While Sumanik said she’d hoped for a larger turnout, she said the show itself ran smoothly.

“It was a really good show,” said Sumanik. “We had some super rides. … We had a nice and relaxed horse show.”

Champions were selected in five categories, with reserve champions named in two of those categories.

Alia Krueger riding Lulu was the junior introductory level champion and Bonnie Dixon riding Feather was the open introductory level champion.

Amelia Frey riding McDuff and Olivia Barker riding Wilson were both named champions of the junior training level, with Marina Boulerice riding Jay named reserve champion.

At the open training level, Lacia Kinnear riding Diamonds Are Forever was the champion and Jauna Doland riding Well To Do was the reserve champion.

Spencer Sumanik riding Ivan was the champion of the open first level.

Lastly, Brianne Warner riding Diva had the high score in western-style dressage.

In addition to winning the open first level, Spencer was also presented the Lorene Robertston Award of Excellence. The award is given by the judge to a rider in recognition of the level of excellence in horsemanship and rider skill.

“It was pretty fun to see him recognized, being a Yukon-born-and-trained rider — and riding a challenging horse,” said Inge. “You could see the change and improvement in the horse throughout the weekend.”

With the organizations responsible for equestrian events in the Yukon undergoing a shuffle in the last year, Inge said the teamwork and effort from a variety of people was really crucial to hosting so many shows.

“I’d like to recognize the volunteers because this was a year of shifting from YHRA (Yukon Horse and Rider Association) being a very well-trained group of people putting on horse shows to more of a community group organization,” said Inge.

Bonnie Dixon was an “amazing” event manager for all three shows, explained Inge, with further credit due to Laura Prentice and Manon Desforges for their efforts.

“Those three, with the help of other volunteers, put on horse shows that were really rider-centred and a quality competition so the riders now can move forward in their training,” said Inge. “We could not have done it without them.”

Contact John Hopkins-Hill at john.hopkinshill@yukon-news.com

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Marina Boulerice rides her horse Jay during the 2019 Yukon Dressage Show on Sept. 1. (John Hopkins-Hill/Yukon News)

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