The 2019 College Preparatory Invitational (CPI) is pleased to announce that Sarah Booker will judge the Florida Horse Show Jan. 17-20, 2019 at the Jim Brandon Equestrian Center in West Palm Beach. Booker is a US Equestrian Federation ‘R’ Registered judge in the Hunter, Hunter Seat Equitation and Jumper divisions, and she has judged many collegiate shows of all formats.
“I am always thrilled to be involved with something that promotes the growth of the industry,” Booker said. “If we don't covet the next generation of horsemen, where are we going?”
Since 1968, Booker has been a successful owner, rider and exhibitor of hunters and jumpers. As a junior rider, she competed to many top honors including a top-12 finish in the American Horse Shows Association (now Dover Saddlery/USEF), Medal Finals at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania in 1980 out of nearly 400 entries. But she also has a personal connection to collegiate riding.
“My mom taught equestrian science from the time I was in first grade until I graduated from college,” Booker said. “She taught at William Woods College in Fulton, Missouri, for 17 years and then another 11 years at Stephens College in Columbia.”
Booker owned and operated her lesson, boarding and training facility, The Horse Fair in Columbia, Missouri. A family business for 37 years, The Horse Fair catered to junior and adult riders from their first riding lesson to their first grand prix. She has a firsthand appreciation for the donated horses in the collegiate programs. In the summers at The Horse Fair, Booker would lease college horses to teach on and to show.
“And now, when I judge the collegiate shows, I get to see horses that I've judged a lot,” she said. “That's fun for me.”
In 2002, Booker hung up her spurs and began judging horse shows full time. A favorite of show managers for her positive approach to life, she officiates an average of 35 horse shows per year in the U.S. and Canada. She is committed to promoting and growth of the equine industry and finds joy in judging from the most prestigious hunter derbies and grand prix events to the Walk/Trot divisions.
At a recent year-end finals show in California, Booker was asked to judge two hunter derbies then finish her day judging the Opportunity classes. When she asked the Walk/Trot class of 20 to line up, they formed a circle instead. She asked the announcer to ask them to line up again, only this time, line up like “teeth in a comb.”
“I look up, and it looks like the Amateur-Owner Hunter Under Saddle at Harrisburg,” she said. “I stand up and applaud them. Some of the parents told me that that was the coolest thing they’d ever seen at a show. It was a highlight of my year.”
Booker is also a professional announcer and show manager and has served as a past president of the Missouri Horse Shows Association. She looks forward to judging the CPI Florida Horse Show.
“I like that kids have the opportunity to show who may not have the opportunity, the means or horses to show while off at college,” she said.
About the College Preparatory Invitational
Founded in 2010, The CPI Horse Show is an event designed to educate hunter seat student riders about college equestrian competition and provide them with resources to make connections and weigh the options to enrich their college experience. Plans are underway for a CPI Western Horsemanship Horse Show to premiere in 2020. Riders in grades eight through 12 can earn scholarships in equitation competition and participate in educational presentations led by world-class competitors and leaders in the equine industry. CPI fosters academic excellence and social integrity as an integral part of the equestrian experience through the CPI Scholarship and Educational Fund. Student riders can earn scholarships through academic achievement and community service. CPI also produces CPI College Spotlight events for colleges and universities whose goals are to recruit equestrian students. To learn more about the CPI, visit collegeprepinvitational.com
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