Hacking Out And Home Living Make A Winning Combination For Walk The Moon

Nov 1, 2017 - 1:29 PM

Lexington, Ky.—Nov. 1  

Walk The Moon doesn’t live the life of your average show hunter, but he’s not going for average anyway. “Moonpie” captured the 3’6″ green hunter championship at the CP National Horse Show with Daniel Geitner in the irons. But Moonpie doesn’t live in Geitner’s stable—in fact, Geitner hardly sees him in between shows. The gelding lives at home with his owner, Lynn Seithel, on Wadmalaw Island outside Charleston, S.C.

“He was fantastic. He just jumped better and better and really shined here over the bright jumps,” Geitner said. “He’s able to show himself off, and this course lent itself to that with a lot of galloping long runs to the oxers and the two-strides. That enabled the rider to let him gallop down there and really jump, so it was exciting.”

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Walk The Moon and Daniel Geitner. Photo by Ann Glavan.

Geitner secured the championship by just a single point over reserve champion Luster and Scott Stewart.

“It was a real close race, there were four or five of us at the end who could have stepped up and been champion, so that was exciting,” Geitner said.

Seithel was on hand to collect Moonpie’s prizes and will swing aboard the gelding for her low amateur-owner hunter classes later in the afternoon. Seithel has owned the gelding since he was 5 years old.

“He’s very easy; he’s just a happy horse and super easy,” Seithel said. “I do all the riding at home.”

Seithel keeps the gelding’s home life simple and fun.

“I don’t like to jump alone, so I canter over cavelettis a lot, and before indoors I might have even rolled the cavelettis up as tall as they would go,” Seithel said with a laugh.

“There isn’t much training needed for him,” Geitner added.

Seithel has to work Moonpie’s schedule around her career as an attorney.

“I try to ride about five days a week, and I work, so he’s used to being ridden late in the evening,” Seithel said. “There is a white dog that visits the farm every day between 4 and 5 [o’clock] that he thinks is spooky, so I try to ride him after 5 every day!

“But he’s really easy. My farm is big and I’ll ride him on the road and hack out,” Seithel continued. “He’s really special.”

Apart from Geitner’s win it was Scott Stewart who picked up every other open hunter championship at the CP National Horse Show, earning Stewart the leading hunter rider award for a record 11th year.

“It feels great. You want to try and keep doing it as long as you have some nice horses,” Stewart said. “And I’m lucky enough to have some pretty nice horses.”

Stewart picked up the high performance conformation championship aboard Lucador, owned by Betsee Parker. Parker donated the trophy for the division and named it after Stewart’s partner and fellow River’s Edge trainer, Ken Berkley.

“Ken does a lot of the work and doesn’t really get recognized because he’s not showing hunters anymore so that was really nice,” Stewart said.

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Ken Berkley (right) holding his newly minted namesake trophy donated by Betsee Parker (left) and won by Lucador and Scott Stewart (center). Photo by Ann Glavan.

Lucador won every class in his division except the first class—in that round, the gelding landed from one vertical and zipped off with Stewart, a move Stewart says is becoming a signature for the show.

“He does that here every year,” Stewart laughed. “I thought he would do it earlier in the course, and he usually tries it in the schooling area but he was good in the schooling area.”

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Lucador and Scott Stewart. Photo by Ann Glavan.

Stewart pulled the gelding up after his little breeze down the long side of the ring and checked his girth.

“He usually does some move that makes the saddle slip even if the girth is tight, and it was tight,” Stewart said. “I think he was going to play just a little bit but didn’t realize the jump was right there. He’s a bit of a character, but he made up for it.”

He did indeed—by winning every other class. Lucador accumulated 39 points and added the overall grand championship to Stewart and Parker’s haul.

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Stewart guided Private Life to the win in the green conformation hunter division. Photo by Ann Glavan.
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William Hill took the championship in the 3’9″ green hunter division. Photo by Ann Glavan.
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Catch Me caught the high performance hunter championship with Stewart. Photo by Ann Glavan.

IMPORTANT LINKS:  All the COTH CP National Horse Show coverage  | What You Need To Know  |  live results/order of go  | live streaming  | show website

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