Grace and power: Draft Horse Classic awards announced |

Grace and power: Draft Horse Classic awards announced

Winner of the Draft Horse Classic’s Ultimate Hitch Competition – Meadowlake Belgians, owned by David and Patsy Cunningham and based out of Carlton, Oregon – performs in the arena at the 2016 Draft Horse Classic.
Photo courtesy Laurie Ann Martin Photography |

Awards for the 30th annual Draft Horse Classic, held Sept. 22-25 at the Nevada County Fairgrounds in Grass Valley, have been announced. Mike Loveland Jr. of Albion, Mich., judged the Draft Horse competitions and halter show.

Almost 50 draft horse exhibitors — traveling from California, Oregon, Nevada, Idaho and British Columbia — competed for approximately $30,000 in premium awards. The competitions took place during six performances over the four-day event.

The winner of the Ultimate Hitch competition was David and Patsy Cunningham of Meadowlake Belgians, from Carlton, Ore.

Audrey Popoff of Unhitched Ranch, from Colton, was recognized as the outstanding lady driver for the third year in a row, accumulating high points to win the Susan Parnell High Point Perpetual Award.

The Teamster of the Year Award was presented to Mike Lorenzini, an honor bestowed upon him by the voting of his fellow teamsters. Lorenzini is from Lakeport. The Andy Amsbaugh Teamster Award went to Rick Newborn of Top Hand Ranch, Elverta; and Abby Partridge of Partridge Percherons, Galt, won the Youth of the Show award.

The Overall Supreme Champion horse, King, is a Clydesdale owned by Unhitched Ranch of Colton, and shown by Scott Banga. King was also awarded the Supreme Champion Gelding. Channell, a Clydesdale owned by Rockin RP Ranch of Pleasant Grove, and shown by Crystal Newborn, was awarded the Supreme Champion Mare.

The Champion Matched Pair went to Clydesdales Rambo and Ike, shown by Lawrence McGibbon and owned by Carlaw Clydes of Cranbrook, British Columbia.

At the Harvest Fair, with more than 600 items entered, the Best of Division in the Scarecrows went to Pamela Raschke of Grass Valley; and the People’s Choice award for the Scarecrows went to Terry Hobart of Grass Valley.

A complete list of 2016 Draft Horse Classic awards, as well as all the Harvest Fair winners, is on the Nevada County Fairgrounds’ website at

The 2017 Draft Horse Classic is scheduled for Sept. 21-24. Tickets will go on sale on May 1, 2017. Visit for more information.

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