Courtesy of Bill Gamble
Genesee Valley Hunt Master Marion Thorne with “Lucky Buckets” at the July 4 Cavalry Games.
Master Marion tops Cavalry Games with ‘Lucky Buckets’
Genesee Valley Hunt Master Marion Thorne has taken part in and won the July 4 Cavalry Games more times and on so many different horses that the research involved in coming up with hard numbers that are also accurate is beyond the scope of my time this week. Let’s just say that she knows what she’s doing and has a firm grasp of the ins and outs of this unique competition.
That is not to say, however, that her participation ensures victory and the outcome is not hotly contested.
Seven riders presented themselves for this year’s games including Quentin Peter Llop who has won the J. Robert Houston trophy twice including last year, this time riding Gnat, and Jim Watrous on Cavanobles, whose dam Sweet & Noble was his mount for his two wins. The rest of the field included Jesse Llop on Two Star, Susan Kelley on Redford Nibblesworth, and Alice Smith on Casper.
The games were first held on the east lawn of the Wadsworth Homestead at the south end of Geneseo’s Main Street in 1885. After a hiatus of several years starting in 1931, the games were reinstated by Judge J. Robert Houston as part of local bicentennial celebrations in 1976, so they have been contested for 80 years.
The various challenges that comprise the event were widely used on ceremonial occasions in the military for cavalry officers to display their prowess at the skills required in battle when sabres, javelins and lances were the weapons of the day. In fact the sabre used in the games is an antique dating back to the original games.
Thorne had a convincing win in the ring spear, made it through three elimination successively-raised rounds in the jumping while hitting a can off the jump standard (backward slash only, so you don’t risk cutting off your horse’s ears – essential in time of war when lopping off someone’s head), and galloped home with a considerable lead in the rescue race.
In the final tally, Jesse Llop and Susan Kelley placed second and third respectively.
Lucky Buckets is a true Valley-bred, out of a Morgan mare named…Morgan, by thoroughbred Sarge who was bred by Aaron and Charity Donnan and now belongs to Aaron’s father Bruce and wife Allie.
Ten-year-old Lucky Buckets was foaled at Bruce and Allie’s and acquired his interesting name when Bruce, Allie, and their granddaughter Kailey Falk were present at his birth. “That sure was lucky” (that they were there), said Bruce. “We should name him Lucky.” Whereupon 3-year-old Kailey chimed in enthusiastically, “How about Buckets!?” So there you have it.
Lucky Buckets came to the Thorne stables about two years ago as Marion and Travis’s son Joe’s all-purpose foxhunting, 4-H, and Pony Club mount. After a week at 4-H Camp, then the Pony Club Dressage Rally with Joe, the bay gelding was obviously well-prepared for anything it might be asked to do. I guess it’s all in a day’s work for a true Valley Horse.
Genesee Valley Hunt Horse Trials results
Forty-two entries in the horse trials, almost 1/3rd of the overall entries, were in contention for the Career2 program awards for retired racehorses finding new careers.
Eligible horses can earn points and prizes in eight events this year in New York State, three of which are in this area. Winners at this event based on best overall score at each level were:
Preliminary – 1. My Main Man with Barbara Allen; 2. Queen of Hearts with Kelly Sult. Training – 1. The Country Gentleman with Jack Walnes; 2. Behrometer with Carol Connors. Novice – 1. Lloyd with Rebecca Posner; 2. Boon’s Power with Valerie Sprague. Beginner Novice – 1. Sailing West with Colleen Rouse; 2. Wooden with Patricia Weir.
Division winners for the weekend were:
Open Preliminary: 1. My Main Man and Barbara Allen (Canandaigua); 2. Queen of Hearts and Kelly Sult (Erie, PA); 3. Dibelius and Darren Chiacchia (East Aurora)
Open Training A: 1. The Country Gentleman and Jack Walnes (Avon); 2. Fashion Cents and Mariie Vitullo (Rochester); 3. Brunello and Nancy Reale (Rochester)
Open Training B: 1. Foghorn J. Leghorn and Carrie Wehle (Scottsville); 2. Top Gun and Lindsay Foxluger (Fairport); 3. Nicole Robertson’s The Game Changer and Waylon Roberts (Port Perry, Ontario)
Open Training C: 1. Behrometer and Carol Connors (Rochester); 2. Leap of Faith and Mackenzie Bennett (Nunda); 3. Snake Hunter and Morgan Barron (Lansing)
Open Novice A: 1. Lloyd and Rebecca Posner (Avon); 2. Naughty by Nature and Maria Spinelli (Rochester); 3. Jamie and Stacia Southcott (Albion)
Open Novice B: 1. Charlotte and Jean Donnan (Linwood); 2. Dr. Bruce Stewart’s Honey Locust Mate and Anne Eilinger (Mendon); 3. Heza Hidden Breeze and Kimberly Blaszak (Corfu)
Open Novice C: 1. August Rush and Anna Smith (Geneseo); 2. Stephanie Sixbey’s I Think I Can and Emily sixbey (Walworth); 3. Zanzibar and Fylicia Barr (Allegany)
Open Novice D: 1. Judy DelVecchio’s El Niño and Anne Eilinger; 2. Round the Twist and Katherine Lorenzen (Leesburg, VA); 3. Toby and Rosalyn Nardella (Loganton, Pa.)
Open Beginner Novice A: 1. Nancy Steven’s Maggie and Nicole Lund (Andover); 2. Wooden and Patricia Weir (Rochester); 3. Just Kidding and Katie Rubio (Bloomfield)
Open Beginner Novice B: 1. Anne Mortimer’s Galatea HU and Carrie Wehle; 2. Down East and Farley Wagner (Farmington); 3. Pamela Tooker’s Starlit Dancer and Anne Eilinger
Open Beginner Novice C: 1. Sailing West and Colleen Rouse (Honeoye Falls); 2. Moranda and Hannah Berger (Scottsville); 3. Galley Girl and Fylicia Barr
Open Beginner Novice D: 1. Nancy Hyman’s Arioso and Peter Stwertka (Rochester); 2. After Joe and Aaron Donnan (Piffard); 3. Aaron Donnan’s Carlos and Charity Donnan (Piffard)
Firecracker Derby Results
Intro Horse: 1. (tie) Razzle Dazzle with Sue Epstein (Sodus) who also won the Spirit Award, and Darkness Falls with Jean Donnan (Linwood); 3. Sunny with Celena Goodwyn
Intro Rider: 1. Bonzer Boy with Patsy Titus (Go Patsy!!) (Caledonia); 2. Ataktos with Ajia Cherry (Fairport) who also won the Spirit Award; 3. King’s Ransom with Meagan Smith (Naples)
Open Intro: 1. Ataktos with Ajia Cherry; 2. Darkness Falls with Jean Donnan; 3. Bonzer Boy with Patsy Titus
Beginner Novice Horse A: 1. Delema with Alice Smith (Dansville); 2. Dusky Dew with Kailee Klimchuk (Rochester); 3. Logan with Jill O’Connell (Ontario); the Spirit Award went to Cisco with Caitlin Dray of (Spencerport)
Beginner Novice Horse B: 1. Hideaway’s Ness with Carol Kozlowski (Avon) who also won the Spirit Award; 2. Galatea with Carrie Wehle (Scottsville); 3. Indigo with Carol Kozlowski
Beginner Novice Rider A: 1. Earth to Abby with Katie Posner (Clarence); 2. Porter with Kristen Tanck (Scottsville); 3. Flight of Fancy with Christine Pallini (Penfield)
Beginner Novice Rider B: 1. Star of the Irish with Sarah Batzing (Caledonia); 2. Flight of Fancy with Christine Pallini; 3. Severance Package with Kim Crane (Rochester) who also won the Spirit Award
Open Beginner Novice A: 1. Hideaway’s Ness with Carol Kozlowski; 2. Indigo with Carol Kozlowski who also won the Spirit Award; 3. Oslo with Beth Harrison (Bloomfield)
Open Beginner Novice B: 1. Severance Package with Kim Crane; 2. Brio with Meghan Opp
Novice Horse: 1. Lena’s Lost Sock with Kim Ciulla (Bloomfield); 2. Galatea with Carrie Wehle
Novice Rider: 1. August Rush with Anna Smith (Huntingdon, VA) who also won the Spirit Award; 2. Kildalton Red with Karen Kelley (Livonia)
Open Novice: 1. August Rush with Anna Smith; 2. Kildalton Red with Karen Kelley; 3. Charlereuse with Sandra Mesrine (Bristol, WI); the Spirit Award was won by Round the Twist and Katherine Lorenzen of Leesburg, Va.
Training Horse: 1. Top Gun with Lindsay Foxluger (Fairport); 2. Cassanova with Kristen Monaco (Lancaster); 3. Miss Miggins with Meg Lloyd (Geneseo)
Training Rider: 1. The Country Gentleman with Jack Walnes (Avon); 2. Brunello with Nancy Reale (Rochester); 3. Rex with Doug Hart (Geneseo)
Open Training: 1. Rex with Doug Hart; 2. Charlereuse with Betsy Keller (Trumansburg); 3. Cassanova with Kristen Monaco