Two world-class riders from each discipline—show jumping, hunter, dressage, and polo—competed in the reining ring at the Equestrian Aid Foundation (EAF) fundraiser, Who Reins Supreme?, presented by Wellington Classic Dressage.
Held on Friday, February 1, 2013, at the Jim Brandon Equestrian Center in West Palm Beach, Fla., the evening raised funds for EAF programs that financially assist equestrians, horsemen and equine-related professionals who are suffering from catastrophic illnesses and injuries, throughout their time of need.
Nic Roldan, Brandon Phillips, Louise Serio, Peter Pletcher, Chris Hickey, Susie Dutta, Candice King, and Georgina Bloomberg showed off their newfound reining skills in a custom-designed reining pattern created by Tom and Mandy McCutcheon and Sarah Willeman Richter. The hunter team was victorious, tackling the speedy spins and sliding stops of reining with poise and precision.
“I am proud to be a winner of this year’s EAF reining competition,” said Louise Serio. “Though Peter and I won in the ring, the real victors are the equestrians and horse-related professionals who will be able to receive financial support from EAF thanks to this year’s unprecedented participation in Who Reins Supreme?.”
In addition to the reining competition, the evening also consisted of the annual EAF Luminary Award presentation. The second annual Equestrian Aid Foundation Luminary Award was presented to R. Bruce Duchossois for his contributions to equestrian sports and the horse community. Duchossois strives to give back to the industry that has given him so much. He serves on the Executive Board of the EAF, is a trustee of the USET Foundation and co-chair of the USEF’s Owner Taskforce. Duchossois also is an active member of the USHJA, and a board member of the Alltech National Horse Show and the Aiken Training Track.
“I have seen firsthand how EAF changes the lives of men and women who otherwise would not be able to afford medical, rehabilitation and essential expenses, and I am proud to be a part of such an organization” said Duchossois. “It is an honor to be the recipient of the 2013 Luminary Award, and I relish the opportunity to continue to promote the mission of EAF.”
The signature Taste of Charity, sponsored by Tito’s Handmade Vodka, offered a sampling of the finest foods and cocktails from some of South Florida’s most esteemed restaurants, including Bice Ristorante, International Polo Club, I’m Greek Today, Smokey Bones, LongBoards, Players Club Restaurant and Bar, TTT Bar Bistro, Cha Cha’s Latin Fresh Kitchen and Tequila Bar, FUKU, Agliolio Italian Bistro and Bar, Taylor Made Café, and Guiseppe’s. Trick riders Brandon Perdue and Gena Cox entertained the crowd, and guests danced to live music into the night. Sean O’Keefe Events managed the event’s production for the third year in a row.
“Who Reins Supreme? was an enormous success, and we are humbled by the support that both the equestrian and Palm Beach communities have shown us,” said R. Scot Evans, President of the Equestrian Aid Foundation. “In September, EAF reached a milestone of distributing more than $2 million in funding to its recipients since its inception. The money raised at this year’s Who Reins Supreme? serves as an integral step toward our next milestone.”