Golden Repeats Grand Performance


Ponies closed out competition on Sunday, October 29, for the 2023 Washington International Horse Show, presented by MARS Equestrian™. Betsee Parker’s Brixton and Vivian Golden won the Grand Pony Hunter Championship, presented by the Castellanos Family for the second year in a row.

Capping off a spectacular two-year partnership, 14-year-old Vivian Golden of Wyomissing, PA, won the Grand Pony Hunter Championship for the second year in a row. This was their final competition together as Golden continues on in her equestrian career.

“I’ve had him for a long time, and he’s done more than enough for me,” reflected Golden. “We have a good bond, but I think he’s ready. I’m definitely going to miss him though.”

Brixton and Vivian Golden repeated their grand performance in the pony hunters in 2023. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

Coming into Sunday’s final two classes, Golden was unsure if she would be able to pull off the Large Pony Hunter championship, much less the Grand, as they only had a second-place ribbon on Saturday. They had a solid ride in the handy hunter for another second place, but it was their score of 92 in the stake that propelled them to the win, the division championship, and the Grand Championship.

“It was a little nerve-wracking coming into today,” admitted Golden. “I work best under pressure though; I kind of create my own pressure. I have really high expectations for myself. I know what I have to do, and I have a good plan. If I follow the plan, I know it will work out.

“In the stake, the pressure was on because I really needed to win to be grand,” she continued. “He was so good. I know what I have to do to give him a good ride. He’s going to help me where I need it, and I’m just going to try my best. I knew if somebody else won, I wouldn’t have been grand. Everything worked out.”

Joining Vivian Golden and Brixton in their Grand Pony Hunter Championship were Bradley Bowns of WIHS, ringmaster Steve Rector, owner Betsee Parker, and groom Memo Cholac. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.


JJ Torano was named the Best Child Rider on a Pony, presented by ringmaster Steve Rector and Betsee Parker. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

The Potomac Trophy went to Luca Endzweig and Super Sport. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

Colin Shipman received the Gochman Style of Riding Award. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

Tarumianz Captures WIHS Pony Equitation Finals

In the WIHS Pony Equitation Finals, Ella Tarumianz, 14, of Charlotte, NC, took home the victory. She rode Cherrybrook Blue Jersey, a nine-year-old Welsh Pony Cross gelding by Cherrybrook Blue and Gold owned by Deer Creek Farm LLC. They scored a 90 in the jumping phase and stayed strong during the flat phase to ride to the win. Tarumianz was presented with the Jane Marshall Dillon Memorial Perpetual Trophy.

“The course was pretty fun,” said Tarumianz. “It was a little bit more of a basic hunter course, but I think I was able to use that to my advantage and really take me and my pony’s strong spots and use that in this course. When I was walking the course, I was really thinking about which turns I was going to do and how that was going to help my round, and also the possibilities of those turns not working out. I was thinking of the pros and cons of my track and thinking how I’m going to get the best result. It’s definitely important to be able to think of all possibilities so your round doesn’t fall [apart] just because of one mistake.”

Ella Tarumianz and Cherrybrook Blue Jersey won the WIHS Pony Equitation Finals. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

The 2023 WIHS marks one full year of the relationship between Tarumianz and “Jersey,” as the 2022 WIHS was their first show together. The pair improved upon their ninth-place finish in the 2022 WIHS Pony Equitation Finals.

“It’s been really special to go full circle with him,” said Tarumianz. “He’s such a great pony, and he always has my back. He’s really sweet but definitely has a big personality, and I’m really happy with the way he performed in there today. Jersey is super scopey and is able to do anything I ask him to, so that’s why I wanted to do him in this class.”

Ella Tarumianz and Cherrybrook Blue Jersey in their winning presentation. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

Keeping It Reel

WIHS Halloween Hunt Teams

The Large Pony Hunter Hunt Team winners were the Pink Ladies. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

The Medium Pony Hunter winners were the Tangled team. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

The Swiftie team won the Small Pony Hunt Teams. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

Celebrating everything Taylor. Photo by Shawn McMillen Photography.

Photo Gallery

By Alden Corrigan Media

Photo Of The Day

By Shawn McMillen Photography

About Washington International Horse Show

Established in 1958, the Washington International Horse Show is one of North America’s most prestigious, competitive, and entertaining equestrian events. Highlights include the $406,000 Longines FEI Jumping World Cup™ Washington CSI5*-W for the President’s Cup, the WIHS Equitation Finals and Children’s and Adult Hunter and Jumper Championships, plus popular community and charity events, including WIHS Kids’ Day and Barn Night. WIHS is an official USEF Heritage Competition, and a 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization. For more information, visit
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WIHS is an official USEF Heritage Competition, and holds the highest rating,  CSI5*-W, awarded by the Fédération Equestre Internationale, as well as a US Equestrian 6* Jumpers and  Premier Hunters. It is recognized by the US Hunter Jumper Association, Maryland Horse Show Association, and Virginia Horse Show Association. WIHS is a 501(c)(3) non-profit charitable organization.