Six members of the Brentwood-based Dal Porto Ranch show team and their trainer, Carol Dal Porto, braved the elements and mud to compete in a variety of western classes. Most of the team had not experienced a show during such inclement weather, but each of them came ready and prepared to compete.
Mariah Piepho was a first-time competitor at Gold N Grand. She and Spank My Wranglers came home with two top-five finisher belt buckles for showmanship and walk/jog trail in the 18-and-under class.
Megan Silveira and Zipped N Invested earned four top-five finisher buckles in showmanship, horsemanship, pleasure and walk/jog trail in the 13-and-under and 18-and-under classes.
Hailey Powers and Lark N Happy earned a reserve champion belt buckle for showmanship (13 and under) and a third-place buckle in the 18-and-under walk/jog trail. Whitney Peek and Justifiable Zip were reserve champions in the 19-and-over showmanship class.
Margaret Neely and Justa Material Girl won big over the weekend. The pair earned a high point reserve championship in the 45-and-over division. They also won five belt buckles. They were champions in showmanship and trail, reserve champions in horsemanship and pleasure and were a top-five finisher in the walk/jog trail class.
Alexis Steele is the youngest member of the Dal Porto team, and she competed on her own horse for the very first time. Alexis and Intoxicating Zippo have been riding together since October. They are a great match and together they earned a championship in both equitation and pleasure, a reserve championship in showmanship and a top-five finisher buckle in walk/jog trail for 10-and-under. More exciting was the fact that they won the 10-and-under high point championship and brought home a saddle.
– Contributed by Amy Steele