Lauren Schweppe and Cataumet Capture Performance Hunter Championship at HITS Saugerties
Saugerties, NY — May 25, 2023 — Hunter competition is back in action at HITS Saugerties, where the new management team has been hard at work with extensive renovations to the facility, including new footing, new stall mats, and a redesigned restaurant. The professional hunter divisions kicked off the first week of the Spring Season with the Performance Hunters taking center stage in the Hunter Stadium. Lauren Schweppe and Cataumet had an exceptional week in the division, collecting the championship tricolor after four brilliant rounds over the last two days.
Lauren Schweppe and Cataumet. Photo by: ESI Photography
“[Cataumet] is a character,” smiled Schweppe after accepting the championship award. “He’s one of the most fun horses I’ve ever ridden. He’s still green, but incredibly talented and tends to be in the top three of his classes.”
The 11-year-old Swedish Warmblood gelding, affectionately known as “Felix” around the barn, dominated the competition in the Performance Hunter division with Schweppe, much to owner Cynthia “Cindy” Boudreau’s delight. The duo won three of the over fences classes on their way to the championship title. The reserve champion award went to veteran partners Kristen Bumpus and Diadora, a 15-year-old Dutch Warmblood mare owned by Barbara LeStage.
Kristen Bumpus and Diadora. Photo by: ESI Photography
Schweppe has been showing Cataumet for two years and has been thrilled with the horse’s progress. “He was supposed to be Cindy’s Adult Hunter, and he has bigger aspirations than that for right now,” explained Schweppe. “We’re not going to show much more, but we’re pleased he qualified for Devon!”
Based out of Ocala, FL at Meadowood Farm, Schweppe was excited to travel north to HITS Saugerties. “I’m blown away,” she concluded. “The improvements are very impressive. I came here and learner judged last year and they hadn’t started any of the improvements yet. It looks great!”
Hunter action at HITS Saugerties will continue over the next two weeks of the Spring Series as part of the complete HITS-on-the-Hudson season, which runs through September at the world-class facility. The Saugerties Spring Series will feature two $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derbies, as well as a $10,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby during Week III. Classics in the Short Stirrup division, through Junior and Amateur-Owner Hunters highlight hunter competition every week, which include qualifiers for the Marshall & Sterling Insurance League Finals. Additional highlights in THE Ring include the new $750 Bit O’Straw 2’6” Hunter Derby and $750 Tiny Bit O’ 2’ Hunter Derby.