Articles: Horse News
Merrill Murray and Courageous Lord Earn Third Consecutive Five-Gaited
World's Grand Championship
Merrill Murray and Courageous Lord.
Photo: Jen Corcoran/E Motion.
United States Equestrian Federation, Inc.
4047 Iron Works Parkway
Lexington, KY 40511-8483
Tel: (859) 258-2472
Fax (859) 231-6662
Web site: www.usef.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 29, 2011
By Stephanie Doyle
Louisville, Kentucky - It's an annual tradition in Louisville. Champions are
crowned, history is made, dreams come true, and sterling silver trophies
glisten under the lights of Freedom Hall. American Saddlebred Horses,
Roadster Horses and Hackney and Harness Ponies compete to be called a
World's Champion, a World's Champion of Champion, or the most desired title:
a World's Grand Champion.
On Saturday, it was a three-peat triumph for rider/trainer Merrill Murray,
who celebrated his third - and final - $100,000 Five-Gaited World's Grand
Championship victory atop the American Saddlebred gelding Courageous Lord.
The crowd cheered, clapped and whistled on Stake Night - the final night of
the weeklong event - for Courageous Lord, clearly the fan favorite. After a
crowd rousing victory pass, Murray thanked God, and his wife, blacksmiths,
chiropractor, vet, farm owners, and fans of Courageous Lord. And mentioned
the ride was no longer his.
The 10-year-old chestnut, trained by Murray, was sold to Peter and Lynn Via
of Fox Grape Farms about a month ago. Murray announced after his grand
performance, which included a work off, the ride now belongs to Dr. Owen
In other stakes, Real Action, ridden by Peter Cowart, won the Three-Gaited
Grand Championship, and Gabe Deknatel and The Daily Lottery repeated as
champions in the Amateur Five-Gaited Championship.
Attendance was strong for the 108th Kentucky State Fair World's Championship
Horse Show and many who couldn't be there in person watched on computers via
USEFNetwork.com's livestream. This is the first year the webcast has been
offered courtesy of the American Saddlebred Horse Association (ASHA).
The event is highest paying United States Equestrian Federation (USEF)
competition - paying in excess of $1 million in prize money. The first show
was in 1902 with the title of World's Champion being designated in 1914.
To watch Merrill Murray's ride - and all of Friday's competition - and view
photos and results from the entire week, please visit USEFNetwork.com's
World's Championship Horse Show page at:
The vision of the United States Equestrian Federation is to provide
for equestrian sport in the United States of America by promoting the
of excellence from the grassroots to the Olympic Games, based on a
foundation of fair, safe competition and the welfare
of its human and equine athletes.