Frederick County Show Pony Named May Touch of Class Award Recipient; Award to be presented tomorrow at special ceremony
ANNAPOLIS, MD – Spellbound, one of the nation’s leading show ponies, who is headquartered and trained by Kimberly Stewart at her Glenwillow Farm in Jefferson (Frederick County), has been named the May Touch of Class award winner by the Maryland Horse Industry Board (MHIB), a program within the Maryland Department of Agriculture. The award will be presented by MHIB members Jim Steele and Karin DeFrancis on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. during a special ceremony at the Boumi Temple Horse Show at the McDonogh School in Owings Mills (Baltimore County).
Spellbound holds the title as the nation’s large pony hunter champion by the U.S. Equestrian Federation and last week won the Grand Pony Hunter Championship at the prestigious Devon Horse Show in Devon, PA. The 13-year-old Dutch Warmblood pony is owned and ridden by Bernadette Chungunco, 14, from Fairfax, VA, who stables the pony at Glenwillow Farm. Both pony and rider are trained by Stewart.
“When I first got him we just clicked,” Chungunco said. “I don’t really have another animal that I’ve bonded like that with. Every person finds that horse that is their one-in-a-million, and I think he’s mine.”
Stewart has trained numerous national champions through years and routinely takes about a half dozen top horses and riders to A-rated shows throughout the country. She is especially pleased that Chungunco was also named Best Child Rider on a Pony at Devon and is on track to lead the national standings once again.
Each month MHIB honors Maryland horses or people who achieve national and international recognition. The award honors the Maryland-bred mare, Touch of Class, who won two gold medals in the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. Since MHIB initiated the Touch of Class Awards in September, 2011, the organization has honored 53 people and 28 horses, ponies, donkeys and mules, from 23 different equine disciplines and 14 counties, all of them national or international champions. For more information, contact MHIB Executive Director Ross Peddicord at 410-841-5798 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Editor’s Note: Photos of the award presentation will be available after the event upon request, as well as on the MHIB Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/MarylandHorseIndustryBoard