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August 04, 2011 08:00 ET

BMO Grand Prix Champion Crowned at Stanhope Equestrian Challenge

- Event kicked off the Gingerwood Charity Classic

- Proceeds support kids to attend Oak Acres Children's Camp

STANHOPE, PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND--(Marketwire - Aug. 4, 2011) - Excitement and energy was in the air as show jumpers battled it out at yesterday's BMO Grand Prix, with some of Atlantic Canada's top jumpers competing in this prestigious event.

Jen Sarsfield, the BMO Grand Prix champion, led the victory gallop on the grass ring with her horse Ozaria. The runner-up was Martie Murphy riding Joyeux, with Nancy Marshall and her mount Allister placing third.

Spectators from across PEI and beyond came out to enjoy all the activities offered at the Stanhope Equestrian Challenge at Gingerwood Farm. Proceeds from the event will benefit Oak Acres Children's Camp in PEI. The camp, a registered charity, operates six camping sessions per summer for children nominated by their guidance counselors to attend.

This was the fifth year for the Stanhope Equestrian Challenge and organizers are elated with the results. "We've had a great three days," said Martie Murphy, co-chair of the event. "Over 100 volunteers have been working for weeks and it all pays off — the grounds look great, the BMO Fan Centre continues to be a main attraction and the outdoor jumper ring is outstanding."

"BMO Financial Group is honoured to be part of this world class show jumping event and we look forward to working with Gingerwood in providing ongoing support for children and families," said Christine Cooper, Vice-President, New Brunswick & PEI, BMO Bank of Montreal.

In addition to three days of hunter and jumper competitions, visitors were able to enjoy free pony rides, visit with Ike the donkey and his furry friends at the petting zoo, learn about grooming and tack at Kids Horse College, and enjoy a treat at the Country Canteen.

"The horse shows and country fun activities are not only providing families with an affordable outing, but also raising money for Oak Acres Children's Camp, giving deserving children the opportunity to go to summer camp," said Jillian Cahill, co-chair of the event.

The Stanhope Equestrian Challenge is the lead-in event for this weekend's sixth annual Gingerwood Charity Classic, which starts Friday with the Green Diamond Jumper Series and ends Sunday with the BMO Grand Prix. All proceeds raised by the events go to Oak Acres Children's Camp. For a complete show schedule visit www.gingerwoodfarm.com.

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