The 2024 HITS Chicago series concluded another exhilarating weekend at the Lamplight Equestrian Center in Wayne, Illinois, featuring two standout competitions that showcased top-tier equestrian talent. Held in the Douglas Elliman Stadium, these events drew enthusiastic crowds and delivered thrilling performances across the board.

Saturday afternoon’s $15,000 Horseflight Jumper Classic saw seven riders advance to a competitive jump-off. Michaela Munson of Athens, Texas, emerged victorious aboard Charlene owned by Genevieve Munson. Munson piloted Charli to a flawless double-clear effort and an impressive jump-off time of 38.8 seconds to secure the top spot.

Michaela Munson and Charlene. Photo by Alison Hartwell Photography

The 16-year-old Holsteiner mare by Clarimo, affectionately known as “Charli,” has been in the family for almost four years, but Munson took over the ride in May last year.

“Topping the class with Charli today was incredibly rewarding,” reflected Munson. “She’s a seasoned partner, and we executed our plan perfectly.”

Tina Yates and Ariana. Photo by Alison Hartwell Photography

In second place was Tina Yates on HKC Collection LLC’s 13-year-old KWPN mare by Cantos, Ariana, with a double-clear performance and a jump-off time of 40.66 seconds. Lisa Goldman-Smolen claimed third place aboard Barbra Disko’s eight-year-old Belgian Warmblood stallion by Cumano BD, Solomon B, also delivering a double-clear round with a jump-off time of 43.8 seconds.

Sunday morning brought further excitement with the $5,000 Pyranha JR/AM 1.35m Jumper Classic, where Munson continued her winning streak aboard Charli. Their faultless performance in the jump-off once again highlighted their exceptional partnership and skill.

Lisa Goldman-Smolen and Solomon B. Photo by Alison Hartwell Photography

“Charli felt fantastic,” enthused Munson. “She’s such a reliable partner, and we were able to maintain our momentum from the win in the Horseflight Classic.

“Charli is kind of funny,” continued Munson. “She looks very, very sweet, and she is, but she’s kind of a diva. She has to have her fair share of peppermints or else something is wrong with the world.”

Amelia Clayton of Prosper, Texas, secured second place aboard her own 11-year-old Belgian Warmblood mare by I Am Moerhoeve’s Star, Natascha. Stefanie Shaw of Lake Villa, Illinois, rounded out the top three with Contessa, her own nine-year-old Holsteiner mare by Conejo HF.

Madelyn Chardelli and Chasinta. Photo by Alison Hartwell Photography

Competition continued onward into the $5,000 Adequan/NAL/Jr/Am 1.25m Jumper Classic, where Madelyn Cardelli of Hawthorne Woods, Illinois, won on her own 19-year-old Holsteiner mare by Cesano II, Chasinta.

In the $3,000 The League/NAL/WIHS/Jr/Am 1.15m Jumper Classic, Laura Lafinitzegger of Long Grove, Illinois, emerged victorious on her own 13-year-old Hanoverian mare by Livello, Livella, concluding the third week of the Lamplight Spring Spectacular Series.