0 comments / Posted by Ann Wilt

The 2023 show season ended on a high note for Team Knollwood.

Last week’s UPHA National Championship American Royal Horse Show was one for the ages. It showcased terrific horses in a beautiful facility with horsemen and horsewomen running the show.

The Royal is known as a showcase for saddle seat equitation, and Team Knollwood was at the top of the competition.


Our senior riders were stars.

Payton is the reserve national champion of the senior UPHA Challenge Cup final, and finished 5th in the USEF Medal Final as well.

Payton also had the chance to show Eli, her heart horse, in the country pleasure division.  The reunited team finished 8th in both their qualifier and the national championship. Their smiles lit up the arena.


Richie finished third in the senior Challenge Cup final, and finished 8th in the big medal final. 

In addition to his equitation skills, Richie also showed Showdown to a 5th in the junior exhibitor 5 gaited national championship, was third in the 3 gaited pony national championship, and 5th in the national championship for 5 gaited ponies. Great thanks to Nancy Kingsbury for the chance to show Showdown, and to Kentucky trainer Clark Clouse for the opportunity to show the great ponies.


Maiya made a mark in her first year in the senior equitation division. She and Riddle finished 8th out of 24 in the UPHA senior challenge cup final, and were 5th in the senior national championship after finishing 3rd in the qualifier. The future is bright!


 Knollwood’s junior equitation were super strong at the Royal.


Amelia and Garfield finished third in the junior UPHA Challenge Cup. She and her trusted partner finished 2nd in their equitation qualifier, and were 4th in the junior equitation national championship.

Brooklyn and Gamora were 7th in the UPHA junior challenge cup final, and finished reserve national champions in the junior national championship after riding to 5th in their qualifier.

Shaye and Teddy rode to a good 5th in the UPHA junior challenge cup final as a start to the week. Shaye then rode to a 4th in the 13 and under qualifier and came back to win the championship.




Finn returned to the equitation world showing Jaydee and rode to third in the Adult UPHA Challenge Cup final.

Of course, she showed her beautiful gaited mare in the Amateur five gaited division, riding to a 5th place in the qualifier. Finn and Jade put on quite a show to finish 7th in the National Championship for Amateur 5 gaited horses.

Finn’s riding skills are a perfect example of where equitation can take you.


While equitation gets a lot of attention at the Royal, our performance horses and riders were stars as well.

Margit and her boys are always a joy to watch, and we don’t think anyone has a better time showing than Margit.

She and Robert earned a fantastic 3rd place ribbon in their show pleasure qualifier.

Margit and Charlie trotted and racked their way to a 6th place in their 5 gaited show pleasure qualifier, and turned up the volume even more to earn a 4th place in the national championship.


Alexa and Joe made their first trip to the Royal, and rode like they owned the place, earning a 6th place in their qualifier, and a big 8th place in their National championship out of a field of 18 teams.

College girl Tori made the trip to show her beautiful mare Stella and had a ball.  There's no better college break than a week at a horse show, especially when you're studying animal science!


We could not be more proud of all of the Knollwood horses and riders.

The show barn is taking a week off of lessons, and will be back at it planning for 2024 next week.


What’s Coming Up?

Saturday, November 18 at 6:00 PM

Parent’s Academy Meeting

We’re looking forward to meeting with parents interested in our academy program for 2024. Please sign up in the school barn if you’d like to join us for this informational session


Thursday, November 23

Happy Thanksgiving!

We will not be giving lessons, but your instructor will arrange a makeup.


Saturday, November 25 at 5:00 PM

Parents Night Out

All Knockouts are invited to wrap gifts for our adopted families, hang with the Knockout officers and board members, and play games.

Please sign up and pay your $25 in the school barn lounge.

The families are still looking for some donations, and you can check out their lists in the school barn.



Academy Meetings

We’re looking forward to 2024!

If you ride with Nancy or Ann, you probably have already scheduled a time to sit down and talk about plans for next year.

If you ride with one of our fantastic junior instructors, and would like to include your Knollwood shows or camps in your enrollment amount, please let your instructor or admin know, and Ann can get in touch to help.




Friday, December 1

Stirrup Orders Due

December 1st is the last day to order your Freedman’s stirrups for holiday giving. Please talk to Ann.



Friday, December 1

Election Begins

The polls open for the school horse of the year election. There’s a rumor floating around the pasture that the horses are holding a primary election, so stay tuned to see what the lesson horses are up to!


Saturday, December 2 at 6:00 PM

Academy Demo Night

New academy riders for 2024 are invited to join us in the arena to see some of our stars outfitted and ready to ride for you.

Experienced academy parents will be there as well to answer questions.

Please sign up in the school barn lounge.


Saturday, December 9 at 6:00 PM

Holiday Party and Knockout Election

All Knockouts are invited to join us for the holiday party and election of officers and board members for 2024.



December 24 and 25



December 31 and January 1



February 24

Banquet at Merrill Hills

Knockouts, be sure to save the date. It’s an evening of good food, good company, and good fun.

Plus, we have lots of awards for in-barn and out-of-barn shows, a slide show, Scott’s ‘state of the farm’ speech, AND election results for school horse of the year!

 Heads up, Merrill Hills has a dress code, and it's very appropriate for a celebratory event like ours.

No Denim for anyone.

Men must wear collared shirts, and they must be tucked in.

Please help us make it a smooth, enjoyable night for all.



See you soon at the barn!









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