Rarely a horse show went by in 2017 when Betsee Parker’s Private Life didn’t return center ring to collect a championship ribbon, and as a result the U.S. Hunter Jumper Association named Private Life the 2017 WCHR Hunter of the Year and recipient of the WCHR Peter Wetherill Cup. The award will be presented during the $100, WCHR Peter Wetherill Palm Beach Hunter Spectacular on Feb. 17 at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, Florida.
“Peter [Wetherill] was a great friend of mine, and I am honored to be the owner of this lovely horse,” said Parker.
In just his second year of showing, the 7-year-old bay Dutch Warmblood gelding (Verdi—Pinot Rosso, Voltaire) took the green conformation hunters by storm with Scott Stewart in the irons, earning the 2017 circuit championship at the Winter Equestrian Festival (Florida) as well as championships at Devon (Pennsylvania), Capital Challenge (Maryland), Pennsylvania National, Washington International (District Of Columbia) and the CP National Horse Show (Kentucky). Those victories earned him the USEF Horse Of The Year title for the green conformation hunters, money won.
Last year’s $100,000 WCHR Peter Wetherill Palm Beach Hunter Spectacular was also a special class for Private Life as he earned the reserve champion title, received the Mark Gregory Perpetual Trophy as the best conditioned horse of the first round of the Spectacular and earned the Charlie Weaver Memorial Award as the highest scoring conformation horse from the first round of the Spectacular.
“He is a complete goody two-shoes,” said Parker. “He is so automatic that if you took him in the walk-trot class with a 7-year-old he would win it and do everything for the 7-year-old. He’s a brilliant performer and absolutely the simplest horse to ride that you’d ever get up on.”