NorCal Medal Final Wins

NorCal Medal Finals Showcases Equitation Riders

Some come from behind, others take the lead and never look back


Elizabeth Robbins
Sissy Robbins goes straight to the top of the 3′ Medal Final
Photo: Naismith Images

Elizabeth “Sissy” Robbins (Beverly Jovais, trainer) went straight to the top of the NorCal 3’ Medal Final of 47 entries and stayed there. After earning 88 from both judges in the first round and 85.75 in the second, she went into the work off with an average score of 86.87. After a challenging test that included a lengthened posting trot back to the line-up with no stirrups, she was named the champion. Tylor Nowell (Beverly Jovais, trainer) moved up from tenth in the first round and second in the second round to earn the reserve champion title, Camilla Jorst (Lynn Mullins, trainer) was third, and Lauren Andrews (Nancy Hey, trainer) was fourth.

“Winning the first round of the finals was so exciting. I was elated!” Sissy said. “Jonagold felt fantastic. He did everything I asked him to do. In the second round, I was definitely more nervous. It was especially fun to go into the work-off with my barn mate, Tylor Nowell. There was a nice feeling between the four of us out there, everyone wishing each other good luck as we lined up. Riding last in the work-off gave me extra time to think and plan, and Beverly has us practice so many elements at home all year, I felt prepared for the test and just hoped we could do a good job.” And prepared they were–not only did fellow student Tylor come in second, but Kat Taylor was fifth.

“Sissy was the happiest woman on the planet,” Beverly said. “She knew she was on top going into the work off, so for her to hold it together was really great. The test was really tricky, and I give a lot of credit to Lauren, who went first.”

“It was amazing,” Tylor recalled. “I didn’t think I had a chance. My horse felt better today, and I set a better pace.” Her mother Lisa added, “I was really proud of her. She’s only eleven. She had a good weekend.”

Chestnut Hill horses and riders won several other big classes, including Sissy in the $1,000 Adult Amateur Hunter Classic on her Jonagold, and Tylor won the $1,000 Children’s Hunter Classic aboard her Too Cool and took second with her equitation mount Proverb. Finally, Julia Nagler catch rode Olympic (Grace McLaughlin, owner) to the blue in the $1,500 Junior-Amateur Owner Hunter Classic.

Nearly 100 medal finalists attended this year’s NorCal Medal Finals. “The competition is formidable,” commented show manager Adrian Ward. “Many of them have placed well in Southern California and on the national level.”

Ned Glynn agreed. “I’ve been coming to this show since I was a junior. The NorCal board puts in a lot of effort to make this a nice show, and there’s a high level of competition. It’s a good place to showcase your riders and their abilities.” His wife, Hope won first, second and third in the $3,500 Hunter Challenge.

“The quality goes up every year,” Kelly Van Vleck added, who has coached numerous riders to top finishes in the NorCal Finals.

For more information about the Northern California Hunter Jumper Association, visit

While many riders are already setting their sights on next year, there are still a few shows left in the 2010 season. At the LAEC, Gold Coast 7 runs Oct 21-24, the National Preview Nov 10-14 and the L.A. National Nov 17-21. At Hansen Dam, riders have two more chances to earn points for the Maui Trainer Incentive at the Verdugo Hills League Preview Oct 29-30 and the Verdugo Hills Finale Nov 6-7.