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Champions Crowned At The Laurels At Landhope International Combined Driving Event

West Grove, PA—September 7, 2003— The champions have been named the Laurels at Landhope Combined Driving Event at Landhope Farm in West Grove, PA, on Sunday.

World-class drivers and horses from the United States and Canada, competed in one of the most prestigious combined driving events in the country for several championship titles that included the USA Equestrian National Combined Driving Pony Championship, presented by Driving Essentials. The winner of the Advanced Single Pony Division was Betsy Cowperthwaithe of Aiken, SC who won with a combined score of 121.23 penalties.

“I was thrilled to win,” said Cowperthwaithe. “I was a little worried after I dropped a ball in the cones, but fortunately it did not make a difference.”

. It was a fierce but friendly battle in this division with Jack Wetzel of Aiken, SC holding the lead the first two days, but dropping to the Reserve Champion position due to a seventh place finish in the cones. Last year Jack won the Laurels by less than a point.

“At least the championship is still going to Aiken,” said Cowperthwaithe.

The other National Championship was the Advanced Pair Pony Division, won by the defending champion, Tracey Morgan of Beallsville, MD with an overall score of 126.24 penalties.

“I am really pleased with the Ponies,” said Morgan of her pair of Dartmoors. “They are getting a well deserved holiday! This competition was so beautiful and a culmination to a really great year.”

Fred Merriam of Newfane, VT, captured the win in the Advanced Single Horse Division, which served as a United States Equestrian Team (USET) Selection Trial for the 2004 World Championships in Astorp, Sweden. As winner of this division, Merriam also claimed the Martin Auctioneer/Kuhnle Carriage North American Single Horse Challenge scoring 100.07 penalties.

Chester Weber of Ocala, FL led from start to finish to take the Advanced Multiple Division with 125.17 penalties. This was Weber’s fourth consecutive international win defeating five other teams. In the Advanced Pair Division, Eleanor Gallagher of Southern Pines, NC, took top honors with 167.60 penalties.

For the Preliminary entries, Scott Adcox of Mendenhall, PA, won the Preliminary Single Horse “A” Division going clean in the cones for a combined score of 92.94 penalties. Rochelle Temple of Powhatan, VA, won the “B” Division also went clean on Sunday for a final tally of 107.57 and Ellen Epstein of Newtown, PA won the Preliminary Pair Horse Division with 122.40. In the Preliminary Single Pony “A” Division Suzy Stafford of Bear, DE took top honors with a clean go in the cones for a final score of 94.30 penalties and the “B” Division was won by Leslie Griewe of Southern Pines, NC who was also clean in the cones and finished with 104.95. Joan McGurren of Great Falls,VA captured the Preliminary Pair Pony division with 102.77 penalties and Claire Reid won the Preliminary Multiple Pony scoring 174.21.

The Laurels at Landhope Autumn Celebration benefited the Brandywine Conservancy, the Cheshire Hunt Conservancy, the Large Animal Protection Society and the University of Pennsylvania New Bolton Center.

For further information and results, please visit the website at


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