By: Brittany Bevis
This afternoon, an enthusiastic Melissa Haberkorn loped her way to the winner’s circle aboard her gelding, VR Knockyour Socksoff, aka “Socksers.” Haberkorn and Socksers have been a team for the past five years. They currently compete in Masters Amateur all-around events under the guidance of Wade and Carly Parks.
“Carly always knew that this horse had something, but everyone passed him by,” Haberkorn says. “I passed him by too, and then went back to him and said I wanted him. He’s now a great horse. Carly and Wade have done a great job.”
Thus far at the show, the pair has claimed a third place finish in Masters Amateur Hunter Under Saddle, a fourth place finish in Equitation, and a fifth place finish in Showmanship, and they still have Trail left to go. Trainer Carly Parks will show Socksers in Senior Trail next week.
As an all-around competitor, Haberkorn is well-versed in maneuvering through difficult horsemanship patterns. She has a prior Reserve World Championship in the event, and a World Championship in Novice Amateur Trail, but this win today marks her first World Championship in the Amateur division.
“His pattern was wonderful,” she says. “I wouldn’t change a thing. I went out there wanting to hit my marks straight on and push it all the way. I wanted to push the mark. That was the only way I could go out there and win, because there were a lot of great horses out there. I couldn’t stand against some of the beautiful movers, so I had to push everything. I would either be first or last!”
“This morning, when I got on him at about 4:30, I knew he was on. Then, when I practiced before I went in, I could tell he was ready to go.”
Although Haberkorn had confidence in her horse’s ability and level of preparation, this wasn’t necessarily her pattern of choice.
“This was my nightmare pattern,” she says. “So, I think it was really good for us to step up. His left lead isn’t as balanced as his right lead, and everything was left lead-bound. I had to keep him collected while extended and then bring him back and have a nice lead change too. Those are very tough maneuvers.”
“It was a little tricky at first. Then, the way those cones were placed was dimensionally different, but once I saw it that was ok.”
As a reward for a job well done, Socksers will be receiving his favorite treat, Good and Plenty licorice candy, and he will get the rest of the day off.
Masters Amateur Horsemanship-
1-Vr Knockyour Socksoff/Melissa Haberkorn
2-Timeless Assets/Coleen Bull
3-Cockeyed Cowboy/Linda Jessup
4-Sensational Gentlemen/Leona Martz
5-Surely A Star/Steven Rissman
6-T Town Sensation/Kelley Stille
7-All About The Swing/Anne Rosen
8-One Sensational Diva/Tina Slater
9- Tommy’s In Town/Lisa Cherry
10-A Likely Sensation/Jodie Nolen
1-Sensational Gentlemen/Leona Martz
2-All About The Swing/Anne Rosen
3-Tommys In Town/Lisa Cherry
4-Im A Charming Zippo/Shari Brown
5-Zippos Paycheck/Robyn Hanna