King of the Grand Prix! Nick Wagman Sweeps Grand Prix Competition With Two National Championship Titles at Lamplight Equestrian Center
Wayne, Ill. - Aug. 25, 2019 - On the final day of the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions at Lamplight Equestrian Center, competitors returned to perform their final test of the championships and vie for the coveted national titles. Californian Nick Wagman ruled the day of Grand Prix competition in both the Kay and Frey Arenas, clinching back-to-back championships on two different mounts.
For his first ride of the day, Wagman had to tackle the Grand Prix Freestyle as the final leg of the USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Championship. The Grand Prix, Grand Prix Special and Grand Prix Freestyle all counted towards the final placings for the horse-and-rider combinations, and it was Wagman and his mount Don John who came out on top in the final placings with a 76.14% with their entertaining freestyle designed with original music by his husband’s nephew. The 11-year-old KWPN gelding owned by Beverly Gepfer, was consistent throughout the week taking first in both the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special with scores of 72.63% and 72.957% respectively. After donning one tricolor ribbon however, Wagman wasn’t done with his victory laps as he went on to compete in the final test of the Markel/USEF Developing Grand Prix Horse Dressage National Championship with Ferano (Zara D–Scandic, Parcival), a 9-year-old KWPN gelding owned by Elizabeth Keadle. Continuing his winning trend, Wagman and Ferano impressed the judges to take home his second championship title of the day with an overall score of 70.041%. In the USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Championship, Anna Marek and Diane Morrison’s Dee Clair, an 11-year-old KWPN mare, finished the week as the reserve champion. Marek and Dee Clair also remained consistent in their placings throughout the week, taking second place in the Grand Prix with a 68.63%, Grand Prix Special with a 69% and the Grand Prix Freestyle with a 72.07%. Their freestyle, designed by Karen Robinson, matched perfectly with the mare in both stride and personality. The pair’s performance on Sunday helped them earn a total of 69.294%. Jennifer Schrader-Williams and Millione, a 16-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding owned by Millione Partners LLC, finished with the third place ribbon. Schrader-Williams and Millione earned a score of 68.543% in the Grand Prix, a 68.468% in the Grand Prix Special and a 71.99% in the Grand Prix Freestyle. Earlier in the week during the Markel/USEF Developing Grand Prix Horse Dressage National Championship, Wagman and Ferano rode to a score of 67.353% in the Intermediate II to finish in fifth. Their impressive ride in Sunday’s Developing Grand Prix Test earned them a 71.833%, the highest score in the class. With their Intermediate II test worth 40% of their total score and the Developing Grand Prix test worth 60%, the pair leapt to the top of the overall leaderboard and finished with a total of 70.041%. Finishing with another reserve championship title was Alice Tarjan, this time riding her 9-year-old Hanoverian mare Candescent (Christ–Farina, Falkenstern II). Tarjan and Candescent were leading the division after the Intermediate II test, where they scored a 70.931%. Their Developing Grand Prix test earned them a 68.917%, giving them a 69.723% total to finish in second place. Bridget Hay and her homebred Faolan (Freestyle–Wyoming, Welstern), a 10-year-old Oldenburg stallion, took home third place. The pair was sitting in third place after the Intermediate II with a score of 68.235%, and maintained their placing after the final test where they score a 68.917%. Results: USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / Owner / Grand Prix / Grand Prix Special / Grand Prix Freestyle / Total 1. Nick Wagman / Don John / / 72.63 / 72.957 / 76.14 / 73.287 2. Anna Marek / Dee Clair / Diane Morrison / 68.63 / 69 / 72.07 / 69.294 3. Jennifer Schrader-Williams / Millione / / 68.543 / 68.468 / 71.99 / 69.03 4. James Koford / Adiah HP / / 67.913 / 67.596 / 70.845 / 68.226 Results: Markel/USEF Grand Prix Developing Horse National Championship Rider / Horse / Owner / Intermediate II / Developing Grand Prix / Total 1. Nick Wagman / Ferano / Elizabeth Keadle / 67.353 / 71.833 / 70.041 2. Alice Tarjan / Candescent / Alice Tarjan / 70.931 / 68.917 / 69.723 3. Bridget Hay / Faolan / Bridget Hay / 68.235 / 68.917 / 68.644 4. Emily Miles / Floretienne / Leslie Waterman / 68.48 / 68.5 / 68.492 5. Emily Miles / Quantum Jazz / Leslie Waterman / 67.304 / 67 / 67.122 6. Nora Batchelder / Fifi MLW / Nora Batchelder / 65.735 / 68.042 / 67.119 FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Nick Wagman – USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Champion On winning the national championship: “What a way to end the season – it is really exciting! Last year was our first real season in the Grand Prix so a year later we are just more confirmed, stronger and more subtle in the test. We went to Europe and it did a lot for our confidence as well and I think it is all starting to show in the ring here so that is great.” On his time in Europe: “I had really lost my confidence so when I was invited to Europe it really confronted me with if I could do this. I got back there and being there, thrown in the deep-end, was exactly what I needed for myself and Don John. It has been a real turn around for me and my confidence so I am lucky to have had that. It has affected [Don John] in all kinds of ways. I can just tell that his mind set is better and he is able to cope with stress a lot better. He used to be terrified of other horses in the warm-up arena and he hasn’t flinched once so it is starting to manifest itself really positively, I can tell.” On his freestyle: “My husband’s nephew composed the music so it is an original piece that I am in love with. We are going to have to keep it but I will have to make my choreography a little more difficult now that we are getting more steady in the Grand Prix.” On what is next for him: “We are done for right now and [Don John] will have a much needed break. Then we will set our sights on trying for the Olympics next year and throw ourselves in the mix. I think Florida is part of our next plans so we are starting to think about that but for the foreseeable future it will be a little down time.” Anna Marek – USEF Grand Prix Dressage Reserve National Champion On winning the reserve national championship: “It has always been a goal of mine to compete at the Festival of Champions. Clair is such a good girl that we thought I might be able to do it [last year] but it was just not a good idea. It was a big deal to qualify both horses and be able to come here, especially at Grand Prix with Clair because I have been with her for a very long time. She always tries hard and exceeds our expectations.” On her freestyle: “Karen Robinson designed my freestyle for Dee Clair and she was great working with us. I told her what our weaknesses were and what our strengths were. What I love about the music is that there is a clear spot in the music for each transition. I have not ridden that many freestyles so it helped break me in to learning how to ride them, time everything and fix any mistakes.” Jennifer Schrader-Williams – USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Championship third place On being third: “It is always such an honor to be here at this show. Every year that I can bring a horse along and make it again it is very wonderful, I enjoy it very much. We hope to be back again next year!” On her freestyle: “Glenda Moore designed my freestyle last year. We just wanted something really upbeat and fun that showed off his skills. He loves piaffe-passage so we wanted to show that off and have something that the crowd could enjoy.” Nick Wagman – USEF Developing Horse Grand Prix National Champion On winning the championship: “This certainly exceeded my expectations with Ferano. I came here just excited to have qualified so to come out and win it is unexpected but pleasantly welcomed.” On the decision to move Ferano up a division: “He has a really good talent for piaffe-passage so I knew that would be were he shined in the test so I thought to move him up. Instead of trying for the Pan American Games with him we decided to just move him up but to be the national champion is super exciting.” On his test: “My goal today was to go as clean as possible because I had some unfortunate mistakes on Friday. I was really trying to have a clean test and we seemed to pull it off other than one little bobble on my last piaffe but otherwise, it was clean and that was my task and hand and we did it!” On what is next for Ferano: “I think we will probably try out first Grand Prix later in the year at a small show to see where we are at, just slowly get our feet wet in the Grand Prix.” On being at the Lamplight Equestrian Center: “For me just having got back from Europe, this is very similar to a European show with the layout and the busyness so it is really nice to be here and expose your horses, especially your young ones, to a situation like this. Traveling and being away from home is what I am learning is needed if you want to make it to the top so it has been a really good venue to have that experience in the states, and it is beautiful to top it off!” Alice Tarjan – USEF Developing Horse Grand Prix Reserve National Champion On her test: “I think the trot work was a little bit better than it was on Friday but overall we had more energy than we could contain so it was a bit of a mess today. We will go back and keep working on it.” On claiming her third reserve championship: “It is great! I am really happy and the horses are all did well. [Candescent] was second here last year as well and I think we will do it one more year I think, try to get her a little more solemn in the arena since energy can be an issue.” On being at the Lamplight Equestrian Center: “This is my favorite horse show! This facility is fantastic and it is really fun to come here and see people from all over the country, it’s very inspirational to watch all the horses in all the levels. All the trainers are here and you meet new people and network with people, it’s a great atmosphere here.” On learning to ride Candescent: “If there was ever a zombie apocalypse that is the horse you would want to be on! On the ground you have to be really careful but once you’re on her back she has all this energy, but you are completely comfortable. She is not going to do anything naughty or bad, she isn’t scary even though she has so much energy. In the tests we just need to learn how to manage her energy better and make her more relaxed.” Bridget Hay – USEF Developing Horse Grand Prix National Championship third place On being the reserve national champion: “I have never placed this high here so it means a lot. He did the young horse divisions but he was always at the bottom because he is not the fanciest horse, but he is learning. He is very trainable and he clearly has the most talent for the piaffe and the passage with the sitting work and the canter pirouettes, so he is a much better Grand Prix horse than he ever was a small tour horse. He has proved that if a horse has three basic greats and a good brain you can bring them right up the levels. It means a lot because he is homebred, so I have had him since the day he was born. He is my kid, I have a really cool relationship with him. He has a heart of gold.” On her test: “We had mistakes on Friday so today I was like ‘come on!’ He normally puts in a very clean test and he did! In our final centerline I felt we didn’t have as much oomf as we can. He can passage much bigger than that. In the I2 we halt at X so they all think it is maybe a halt so we lost the rhythm a little bit. Otherwise, it was a pretty clean test for us with no major bobbles. I think we could just improve the overall quality but hopefully with time as he gets stronger that happens.” On what is next for Faolan: “[To slowly move into the Grand Prix] is my goal too. In Florida I work with Adrienne Lyle and she has helped me a lot this year and is the reason we are here. Our goal now is to get to Florida to start doing Grand Prixs in the national ring and see where we are.” On being at the Lamplight Equestrian Center: “It is a gorgeous facility. It means a lot coming to Lamplight because to us, it is the national championships coming here.”
Keeping Success In the Family: Manatee Carries Lexie Kment to USEF Children Dressage National Championship
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 25, 2019 – On the final day of the 2019 U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions, young athletes entered the Kay Arena of Lamplight Equestrian Center with hopes of showing their very best in the FEI Children Individual Test. Following the team test on Saturday, riders were hoping to seal the deal in the division to claim the champion title in the USEF Children Dressage National Championship. Paving the way to success was Lexie Kment and the national championship veteran, Manatee.
Originally a racing Thoroughbred with twenty-two starts to his name, Manatee was purchased by the Kment family four years ago as a fun horse for the Kment sisters to ride. Upon purchasing the 16-year-old Thoroughbred gelding, the family had no idea he would end up a national champion in dressage, winning the 2019 USEF Children Dressage National Championship with Kment. Thirteen-year-old Kment came to the championships from Palmyra, Nebraska, where she trains with her mother, Jami Kment. Jami is a USDF medalist who has trained many athletes to top ten finishes at the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions, one of which is Kment’s sister, Kylee, who placed third with Manatee in the USEF Children Dressage National Championship last year. Kment decided that after watching her sister compete in the championships, she was inspired to do the same. With a strong team test under her belt, Kment tackled the individual test with grace, earning a 68.155% from the judging panel. Combined with her test score from day one, Kment was awarded a 69.591% overall to lead the division by just over a point. Carmen Stephens and the 9-year-old Dutch Welsh Pony gelding Woldhoeve’s Silco were able to maintain their second place standing in the division from Saturday, coming out with an individual test score of 68.393%. The 13-year-old from Saratoga, California, trains with Hillary Martin and has been riding ‘Silco’ since 2016. Despite this being their first time at the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions, Stephens gave two consistent rides over the two days, bringing her total to 68.524% for the reserve national championship title. Completing the podium was 14-year-old Missourian Joslyn Allen and Lady Liliana. Allen also trains with her mother and rides a U.S. Festival of Champions veteran. Last year, with Allen’s sister Averi Allen, Mary Adam’s 9-year-old Friesian Sporthorse mare Lady Lilliana was second in the division. This year, the horse returned to the championships to carry another young rider to a top three finish, scoring a 68.988% in the individual test and a 67.635% overall to take third place honors. Results: USEF Children Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / Team Test / Individual Test / Total Score 1. Lexie Kment / Manatee / Jamie Kment / 71.026 / 68.155 / 69.591 2. Carmen Stephens / Woldhoeve’s Silco / Carmen Stephens / 68.65 / 68.393 / 68.524 3. Joslyn Allen / Lady Lilliana / Mary Adams / 66.282 / 68.988 / 67.635 4. Justine Boyer / Lentisco XVIII / Hampton Green Farm / 67.885 / 67.143 / 67.514 5. Josephine Hinnemann / Tom / Josephine Hinnemann / 64.679 / 70.179 / 67.429 6. Maren Elise Fouche-Hanson / In My Feelings / Maren Elise Fouche-Hanson / 66.667 / 67.885 / 67.276 FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Lexie Kment – USEF Children Dressage National Champion On being a national champion: “It truly hasn’t sunk in yet. I was here last year when my sister was third and I told myself that I would be here someday and that I was going to be able to win.” On her partnership with Manatee: “He has been with us for four years I think. It has been nice because we got him as a horse that we could just ride, hack and have fun on, so it is cool to see how far he has come. He is an off-the-track Thoroughbred. Yesterday we learned that he went in 22 races and won a little less than half of them. It is nice to see him go from being a pasture horse to being here. We experienced [some of his race horse tendencies] today in the victory lap when we got really close to a chair but we were able to get around it! In the barn he is exactly like a manatee. He falls asleep in the crossties, he drags his feet and he has a super sweet personality. He is a really cool horse.” On her test: “Today’s test was a little less energetic because he thinks that he did great yesterday so he should be done! He was just a little less energetic and a little stiff but we worked through it.” Carmen Stephens – USEF Children Dressage Reserve National Champion On her test: “Today’s test went really well. [Woldhoeve’s Silco] was being very good and listening. Everything went as well as I could have hoped for.” On her partnership with Woldhoeve’s Silco: “I have had Silco for three or four years now. He is very sweet and has a very funny personality. He is on the older side but has always been unpredictable at times. He has taken me from having fun around the arena to being able to compete here.” On being a reserve national champion: “It feels surreal. It is amazing that we have been able to get this far.” Joslyn Allen – USEF Children Dressage National Championship third place On her test: “Yesterday’s test was not my best test so today I was very happy. Yesterday I was 7th and today I was 3rd overall so I was really excited. Yesterday she was very energetic and running through all of the movements which didn’t make it look really nice. Today we just took our time and really went through the movements slowly and calmly.” On her partnership with Lady Lilliana: “We got my horse from the Amish and my grandma purchased her from a student of my mom. My sister took her here last year and put all of the Second Level work on her to be second place in the Children’s division. To be back here with me riding her and doing really well is really exciting.”
Mackenzie Peer's Standout Equitation Impresses Judging Panel to Win USEF Dressage Seat Medal Final 14-18 Championship
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 25, 2019 – As the final class of the day, the USEF Dressage Seat Medal Final 14 – 18 Championship took place on Sunday afternoon in the Kay Arena of the Lamplight Equestrian Center. Ten of the nations top dressage equitation youth riders were determined to perform their best, but at the end of the day, it was Mackenzie Peer, 18, of Overland Park, Kansas, riding Quantum MRF who took home the gold medal and was named the new national champion.
In this division, the judging panel asked riders to demonstrate specific gaits, while evaluating their equitation and the efficiency of their aids. Riders were first asked to ride around the arena together to perform the walk and trot requirements in both directions before being split into two smaller groups for the canter work. Following the conclusion of the group exercises, riders were given a short pattern to ride individually. In the work-off, riders were asked to enter the ring at a sitting trot, leg yield left down the centerline from C to B, where they would pick up the right lead of working canter. After cantering down the longside, they were asked to transition to the trot in the corner, ride down centerline again before asking for a leg yield to the right to B. At B, they picked up the left working canter before performing a sitting trot at M and halting at C, directly in front of the judges to conclude the test. While several riders had smooth tests, it was Peer on Nicole Helland’s 10-year-old Hanoverian, whose skill most impressed the judges to receive a high score of 90. Following the conclusion of the show, Peer is looking forward to training with Johann Hinnemann in Germany for the next month before moving to California to train full-time as a working student with her trainer David Wightman in Temecula. Taking the silver medal in the class was Erin Nicole and DG Bar Ranch’s Jagger DG with an 88 from the judges. Despite the KWPN gelding being only 5-years-old, Nicole successfully navigated the pattern and made the long trip from Yorba Linda, California, well worth it. With an overall score of 86, Averi Allen and the 6-year-old Hanoverian gelding Superman were rewarded with the bronze medal in the dressage seat class. Jonni Allen owns the young horse that partnered with Allen for the class. Results: USEF Dressage Seat Medal Final 14-18 Championship 1. Mackenzie Peer / Quantum MRF / Nicole Helland / 9.0 2. Erin Nichols / Jagger DG / DG Bar Ranch / 8.8 3. Averi Allen / Superman / Jonni Allen / 8.6 4. Tori Belles / Romulus / Tori Belles / 8.5 5. Kelsey Amos / Francesca / Pamela Maloof / 8.2 6. Brooke Engles / Rio’s Hatteras / Chloe Fullar / 8.0 Mackenzie Peer – USEF Dressage Seat Medal Final 14-18 Champion On winning the national championship: “It was fantastic. To go from being reserve champion [in the Junior National Championship] and then ending with champion, it is just the icing on top. [Quantum MRF] tried so hard and it was a long week so for him to continue to give me his all at the end, I am so grateful. I can’t thank him enough along with my coach David Wightman and his owner Nicole Helland. We have been a team and I am really grateful.” On the pattern: “I believe this is a pattern we rode at regionals to get here so it was a pattern I had competed before. One of my favorite things is when leg yield turns into the canter transition because I think it sets up the horses super for the bend through their body.” On what they have been working on with their equitation: “I think it has been mostly focusing on looking up, putting my hands down and shortening my reins. I can’t say that I have done a ton of specific equitation practice but I think riding well is a part of it so making sure you’re riding correctly and that your horse is listening to you everyday is important and it sets you up for it. I would say that keeping my elbows on my body is a big thing for me so I have been getting yelled at a lot for not doing that!” On why the equitation is important: “I think it is a super important class. This is a sport that is a partnership and some people have the opportunity to be able to get really nice horses and that is super for them to ride well and I think that is good, but I also think it is important to focus on the rider and that the rider also needs to ride well – this class shows if you can actually ride your horse. To move up the levels and continue in this sport showing how well you can ride and keep your horse listening to you is a good thing for people to see and it lets you know if you’re on the right track in what you’re doing.” Erin Nichols – USEF Dressage Seat Medal Final 14-18 Reserve Champion On the pattern: “I agree with Mackenzie. It’s a great pattern that allows the horses to set up for the next transitions. I also like how there are multiple transitions to show you can control your horse in the ring and that they are listening.” On what they have been working on with their equitation: “I have been doing a lot of equitation but I also do show jumping so we have been focusing on keeping my leg long and my toes in because in the jumpers we don’t really focus on that. Moving my hands with the horse has helped with keeping relaxation and keeping the horse relaxed.” Averi Allen – USEF Dressage Seat Medal Final 14-18 Championship third place On the pattern: “I also loved the pattern. I was a little worried my 6-year-old wouldn’t do the transitions at the letter and things like that but he was great and I loved the pattern.” On what they have been working on with their equitation: “We have been working on equitation everyday — making sure my shoulders are back and my head is up. We haven’t done much of it over the past year because we have been just trying to train my horse and qualify for juniors, but in the past week we have been focusing on keeping my hands down and staying relaxed with my head up.”
Sensational Performance By Michael Bragdell Earns Him Back-to-Back Markel/USEF Young Horse National Championship Titles on SenSation HW
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 25, 2019 – The final day of competition at the Lamplight Equestrian Center kicked off with the 6-Year-Old Test for the Markel/USEF 6-Year-Old Dressage National Championship. After receiving the highest score of the class, an 8.78, Michael Bragdell of Colora, Maryland, and SenSation HW claimed the championship title in the very competitive division. Bragdell and SenSation HW, who were the 2018 Markel/USEF 5-Year-Old Dressage National Champions, continued their winning trend while Alice Tarjan and Candescent, last year’s reserve champions in the same division, repeated their reserve placing.
Bragdell and SenSation HW (Sunday–Donata, Dancier), a Westphalian gelding owned by Carol McPhee and bred in Germany by Alfons Bergjohann, had established an early lead in the division following their performance in the 6-Year-Old Preliminary Test on Friday. The pair earned a score of 8.56 in their Preliminary Test, which counted towards 40% of their total, prior to being awarded 8.78 in their final test, worth 60% of their total, to help secure the victory. SenSation HW was given an outstanding score of 9.6 for his elastic, cadanced trot that covered plenty of ground and a score of 8.8 for submission. Combined with a score of 8.5 for his energetic and rhythmic canter, a score of 8 for his clearly defined walk and a score of 9 for overall impression, their final test scores helped them finish with an overall score of 8.692 for the tricolor ribbon. Finishing with the reserve championship was Alice Tarjan and Fairouz (Franziskus – Diva, Don Frederico), her own Oldenburg mare that was bred in Germany by Bramall/Dusche GBR. In the Preliminary Test, Tarjan and Fairouz finished in fifth place with a score of 8.12. In their final test on Sunday, Fairouz were awarded a score of 9.5 for their visibly engaged and adjustable trot, an 8.3 for their ground-covering walk and an 8.2 for their uphill canter. With a submission score of 8.1 and an overall impression score of 8.7, they finished with a total of 8.56 for the day and an overall score of 8.384 for the reserve championship. Melissa Fladland and I’m All In (Jazz–Tavita, Ferro) finished in the third place position following their final test with an overall score of 8.344. Bred in Holland by G. Aalberts, I’m All In, a KWPN gelding owned by Fladland and Caphri Dressage, earned a score of 8.86 in their Preliminary Test on Friday, and a score of 8.0 in their final test. In the final, the gelding was awarded a score of 8 for his cadanced trot, 7.8 for his walk, 7.7 for his canter, a submission score of 8.3 and an overall impression score of 8.2. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Michael Bragdell – Markel/USEF 6-Year-Old Dressage National Champion On winning the championship back-to-back: “It feels fantastic! It is wonderful. It is always a treat to come here — the facility, the staff, the volunteers, it is amazing. It is alway put together so nicely so just to get here is a big thing, no matter what division you are in. There is always a little more pressure when you have won the year before because you want to be able to stay on top but I think with young horses you have to roll with the punches and see how it goes.” On the judges remarks: “I think today they were pretty on with the little things. I know my horse and I know what they are looking for but I had to make some adjustments in order to do the presentation that I felt would be the best. For my changes for example, I decided to ride him a little bit lower for my changes. Maybe they will say something about balance, which they did, but I decided that I was going to do that to show more relaxation in the changes, I felt that was more important than having that balance the whole time.” On what SenSation HW has improved on most in the year: “For me, it is more consistently being able to access his body. As he matures in the training, his body and mentally I think he has allowed me to access the pieces that I need to access and present him successfully.” On his partnership with SenSation HW: “He came to me when Carol McPhee brought him to me in June of his four-year-old year. I remember that year I liked him and I knew it would be a long shot that year but that she really enjoyed the young horse classes. He ended up being able to come here as a 4-year-old but I think ever since then he has really come into the system and progressed nice. He is a wonderful horse to have in the barn and I feel very fortunate that Carol has him with me and lets me do what I can with him. She is so supportive in that way. We actually went to Europe last year and we ended up taking a detour and meeting the breeder which was so much fun. His name is Alfons Bergjohann and the joy in his face of seeing the horse he bred in his barn with his one mare that he breeds once a year was a lot of fun.” On what is special about this win: “There is a lot that goes into it. He is a client horse but I ride all horses like they are mine, it takes a lot of horses and a lot of heart. It is more than what you see on show day; it is the farrier that checks in with me, the vet that gives me a call to see how things are going, my masseuse that calls me to check on the horses, the crew at home that is taking care of the rest of the horses, my family that is out here with the kids, there is so much that goes into it and it all fell into place today for us to finish on top and that just hit me.” Alice Tarjan – Markel/USEF 6-Year-Old Dressage Reserve National Champion On being reserve national champions: “I am really happy with how [Fairouz] has been. She has been second every year so she is very consistent! I didn’t think she was quite ready to come here – the training is just not quite where it needs to be for this kind of a championship so I figured we would come get some experience and I am thrilled with how we ended up.” Melissa Fladland – Markel/USEF 6-Year-Old Dressage National Championship third place On being third: “We had got him seven or eight months ago when we came here last year. He went from Europe to Florida and then showed all summer so it was quite a tour for him. We had him a year in October and we spent that year training and working with Katherine [Bateson-Chandler] and then over the summer with Jenn Baumert to really get him strong, ready and reliable and we ended up being able to get here! This was not something we were shooting for. We were just working toward the FEI level but he just kept getting better and better so we kept going. He has been super. He never quits and he keeps going, adding more and more each time you ride him.” Results: Markel/USEF Young Horse 6-Year-Old Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / Owner / 6-Year-Old Prelim / 6-Year-Old Final / Total Score 1. Michael Bragdell / SenSation HW / Carol McPhee / 8.56 / 8.78 / 8.692 2. Alice Tarjan / Fairouz / / 8.12 / 8.56 / 8.384 3. Melissa Fladland / I’m All In / Caphri Dressage / 8.86 . 8.0 / 8.344 4. Pablo Gomez / Servus Ymas / / 8.52 / 8.14 / 8.292 5. Caitlin Hamar / Ion SWF/ / 8.18 / 7.84 / 7.976 6. Marta Renilla / WEC’s SEnor Rubenstein / 8.02 / 7.86 / 7.924
Claire Manhard Rides Away With USEF Young Adult 'Brentina Cup' Dressage National Championship Title Aboard Wilfonia
Wayne, Ill. - Aug. 24, 2019 - The final class of the day at the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions, the Grand Prix 16-25 Freestyle for the USEF Young Adult 'Brentina Cup' Dressage National Championship, took place in the Kay Arena at Lamplight Equestrian Center, drawing a crowd of spectators eager to watch horse-and-athletes dance to their freestyle routines. In the end, it was Claire Manhard who earned the total highest score of the championship with her mount Wilfonia to be named the new 2019 'Brentina Cup' champion.
Manhard and Wilfonia, her own 16-year-old KWPN mare, made the journey from Cardiff, California, to compete in the championships along with her barn friend Anna Buffini and their trainer, Olympian Guenter Seidel. Although Manhard also competed in the Brentina Cup last year, she did not feel that she and Wilfonia were quite prepared to perform to the best of their ability. She reflected on all the progress that they have made as a pair in the last year, and thanked Seidel and Buffini for helping support her every step of the way to ultimately become the 2019 champion. Manhard rode to a freestyle routine that her brother, a professional DJ, helped her produce with a techno vibe. Her final centerline in the piaffe and passage, with a beat that matched almost perfectly to her mount’s step, had the whole audience clapping to the rhythm. The judges awarded Manhard and Wilfonia a score of 68.45% for their freestyle, and combined with their Intermediate II score of 68.912% and their Grand Prix 16-25 score of 67.564%, they finished with an average of 68.236% to secure the win. Buffini of San Diego, California, rode her own Wilton II to the reserve championship title to a selection of 80s music. Buffini was crowned the Brentina Cup champion in 2016 with her now-retired mount Sunday Boy, as well as the reserve championship with Wilton II the same year. She was happy to return with Wilton after he had been out of training for a period of time and take home such a high placing. Her Intermediate II score of 68.738%, her Grand Prix 16-25 score of 66.59% and her freestyle score of 71.525% helped her earn a 68.189% overall average for the reserve. Hope Cooper on Concord, Massachusetts, rode Mary Mansfield’s Hot Chocolate W into third place following the freestyle class. Cooper and Hot Chocolate W, a 14-year-old Hanoverian gelding, danced to a freestyle routine put together by Karen Robinson that featured her favorite song, Vivir Mi Vida by Marc Anthony. Her Intermediate II score of 67.824%, Grand Prix 16-25 score of 67.103% and freestyle score of 68.81% gave her an overall average of 67.647% to take third place. Results: USEF Young Adult ‘Brentina Cup’ Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Claire Manhard / Wilfonia / Claire Manhard / 68.912 / 67.564 / 68.450 / 68.236 2. Anna Buffini / Wilton II / Anna Buffini / 68.738 / 66.59 / 71.525 / 68.189 3. Hope Cooper / Hot Chocolate W / Mary Mansfield / 67.824 / 67.103 / 68.810 / 67.647 4. Lauren Asher / West Side / 63.618 / 69.026 / 67.575 / 66.645 5. Kerrigan Gluch / Vaquero HGF / Hampton Green Farm / 68.706 / 63.923 / 67.860 / 66.427 6. Anna Weniger / Don Derrick / Dawn Weniger / 67.588 / 65.282 / 65.10 / 66.177 FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Claire Manhard – USEF Young Adult ‘Brentina Cup’ Dressage National Champion On being a national champion: “It is incredible and I am so surprised. It is amazing to see how far I have come in a year. When I was here last year I felt all over the place, and this year I felt like I really knew what I was doing. It is crazy to be considered a national champion, I am so grateful for that experience and title. To be riding with great people like Hope and Anna is crazy and so cool.” On her test: “We have actually never ridden to this music until today because we just ended up not having enough time to do it. My brother [John Manhard], who is a DJ, made the music and I helped him put it together. He gave his opinion on the bpm and all the technical stuff while I said ‘I want a passage to this beat and this for the ones’ so he really helped me with that. I think it went pretty well considered we haven’t ridden through that music. It was super fun. I love the last centerline – I thought it was a really upbeat dance house kind of centerline – I loved it.” On where she is headed next: “I think Anna and I are both going to try the Grand Prix for a little. My mare is 16 so I am going to try it for as long as possible because this is my last year in U25 now – that was my last U25 test actually. I am going to take a stab at the Open Grand Prix.” Anna Buffini – USEF Young Adult ‘Brentina Cup’ Dressage reserve champion On being reserve champion: “It is incredible to be able to come back and to be riding Wilton, period. In 2017 he became pretty wild, unrideable and dangerous. He was in a field and retired for what was supposed to be forever. Guenter [Seidel] has been incredible in his teaching so we started him back and he has come back better than ever. To be able to come back and not just ride but be second is incredible. You look back on some things and think ‘If I could have done a couple things better then I could have done better.’ But being here is just a win and there is no one I would rather be second to than Claire. We train together everyday, get our nails done, we do everything together. I see how hard she works and we push each other to make each other better under Guenter’s incredible training. To be back here and second with a horse I thought I would never ride again is a dream come true.” On her test: “I love old school music so that is why I went with the 80s. I was actually able to record me singing Hallelujah for my walk music, which was so fun. Horses and music are my two passions so to have them together is amazing. The trot music was some fun 80s music that Marie Manoski helped me put together. I always want to make freestyles entertaining for the people and judges. I think it is just more conducive in getting people to come and getting more eyes on the sport. Anything we can do to push the sport out there and make it more entertaining for people who don’t know dressage or know what is happening is always a good idea.” On where she is headed next: “I think we will do as many Grand Prixs as we can but I think he is nearing the end of his career and given me all he can. I can’t ask much more as he is at the peak of his career to come back from what he had. He has never done the Grand Prix so we are going to try a couple of those and then thankfully I have another top horse coming along that I am really excited about. He will tell me when he is done so then he will get to live in a field somewhere.” Hope Cooper – USEF Young Adult ‘Brentina Cup’ Dressage third place On being third: “I still feel very new to this and Chocolate is very new at this too. With my mom, Jane Karol, and Juan Matute’s help it has been amazing to work through the season to get to where we are. I am also surprised [to be here]! Chocolate is an incredibly generous partner to dance with but again, he is super new to this so whenever I can get in the ring I am so proud of him. It is just so incredible to be sitting next to two of the most amazing U25 riders. It is an honor.” On her test: “My favorite song ever is Vivir Mi Vida by Mark Anthony and I talked to Karen Robinson who created the freestyle about loving the song. Hot Chocolate is sort of a spicy horse and I wanted to accentuate that in him and I thought that song does that. His owner, Mary Mansfield, who is an amazing person and I am so lucky that she lets me ride her horse, loves Spanish music and Marc Anthony so it was a good fit!” On where she is headed next: “Chocolate is 14 and I will be 23 this year so we hopefully have a few more years left but you never know with horses. I hope we have two more years left. Sadly, I had to scratch my other horse Don Diamond after the first day because of a long history of medical issues that he has had but with really amazing vet care he is totally fine, he just didn’t feel quite like himself. I am hoping to be sitting in Claire or Anna’s spot next year with one of those two. My mom has also generously given me the ride on her Grand Prix horse Sunshine so I will be doing the U25 with her next year too.”
Jori Dupell Earns USEF Junior Rider Dressage National Championship While Lexie Kment Gets Strong Start in FEI Children Team Test
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 24, 2019 – In the Kay Arena of the Lamplight Equestrian Center, a total of 12 junior athletes and their horses returned for the final leg of the 2019 USEF Junior Rider Dressage National Championship, the Junior Individual Test, all with their heart set on leading the victory gallop at the completion of the class. With fractions of points separating riders after Friday’s team test, the competition was stiff but ultimately, it was Jori Dupell who rode Fiderprinz 2 to victory, naming themselves the national champions.
Dupell and Fiderprinz 2 proved unbeatable over the course of the two days, sweeping both classes with a win in the individual test for their score of 72.059%, a new personal best for the pair. An overall average of 71.004% gave the North American Youth Championships (NAYC) silver medalist and her 10-year-old Oldenburg gelding over a two point lead in the championships, adding yet another impressive title to their resume that is already filled with accomplishments from the past year-and-a-half together. The 18-year-old, who rides out of DevonWood Equestrian Centre in Oregon, has attended the U.S. Festival of Champions three times now, last year receiving fifth place in the USEF Junior Dressage National Championships. Dupell was thrilled with the geldings performance, stating it was the best he has ever gone for her and she hopes to move up to the Young Rider division next year. The USEF Junior Dressage Reserve National Championship title went to Mackenzie Peer and Nicole Helland’s 10-year-old Hanoverian stallion Quantum MRF. Making the trip from Overland Park, Kansas, Peer also improved her third place finish in last year’s championship by scoring a 69.657% in the individual test for an overall average of 69.627%. Following the conclusion of the show, Peer is looking forward to training with Johann Hinnemann in Germany for the next month before moving to California to train full-time with her trainer David Wightman inTemecula. Making great improvements in their relaxation from Friday’s team test was Isabelle Braden and Dali De La Ferme Rose. Their individual test score of 70% bumped Braden and the 10-year-old Hanoverian gelding up from fourth to third place in the championship class, with an average of 69.015% from the panel of judges. Braden is also aging out of the Junior Rider division this year and will begin competing in the Young Rider division after giving Dali De La Ferme a well deserved rest following her successful streak at NAYC and the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions. Later on in the day, the first leg of the USEF Children Dressage National Championship took place in the form of the FEI Children Team Test. Setting the tone and gaining a strong start in the championship was Lexie Kment and Manatee, a 16-year-old Thoroughbred gelding. The pair earned a score of 71.026% for a nearly 3 point gap separating first and second place. Manatee is a veteran to the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions, however, this is Kment’s first time at the championships. Last year, the off-the-track Thoroughbred carried Kment’s sister, Kylee Kment, to third place overall in the USEF Children Dressage National Championship. Carmen Stephens and Woldhoeve’s Silco received a score of 68.654% to take home the red ribbon in the team test. The 19-year-old Dutch Welsh Pony gelding has been with Stephens since 2016 and has helped her progress from training level up to the Children division to compete for the first time at the U.S. Festival of Champions. Tying for third place was Justine Boyer and Hampton Green Farm’s 18-year-old PRE stallion Lentisco XVIII and Maren Elise Fouche-Hanson with her 24-year-old gelding, In My Feelings. Both horse and rider combinations rode tests that earned scores of 67.885%. The conclusion of the USEF Children Dressage National Championship will take place Saturday, August 24 with riders returning to compete in the FEI Children Individual Test at 9:00 a.m. in the Kay Arena. Results: USEF Junior Rider Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / Team Test / Individual Test / Total Score 1. Jori Dupell / Fiderprinz 2 / Jori Dupell / 69.949 / 72.059 / 142.008 2. Mackenzie Peer / Quantum MRF / Nicole Helland / 69.596 / 69.657 / 139.253 3. Isabelle Braden / Dali De La Ferme Rose / Erin Braden / 68.030 / 70.000 / 138.03 4. Averi Allen / Dafoe / Allison Nemeth / 66.667 / 67.598 / 134.265 5. Mckenzie Milburn / Zero Branco / Mckenzie Milburn / 66.515 / 67.745 / 134.26 6. Nicolas Beck / Campari / Nicolas Beck / 67.222 / 66.373 / 133.595 7. Annelise Klepper / Happy Texas Moonlight / Shannon Klepper / 69.495 / 62.402 / 131.897 Results: FEI Children Team Test Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Lexie Kment / Manatee / Jamie Kment / 71.026 2. Carmen Stephens / Woldhoeve’s Silco / Carmen Stephens / 68.654 3. Justine Boyer / Lentisco XVIII / Hampton Green Farm / 67.885 4. Maren Elise Fouche-Hanson / In My Feelings / Maren Elise Fouche-Hanson / 67.885 5. Quentn Sloan / Queens Faithfully / Tyla Cummiskey / 67.628 6. Paydan Maclaughlin / Lily of Chincoteague / Paydan Maclaughlin / 67.179 7. Joslyn Allen / Lady Lilliana / Mary Adams / 66.282 FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Jori Dupell – USEF Junior Rider Dressage National Champion On continuing her success: “It is a lot. It is really rewarding to work so hard and progressing all season with the horse, then to come here and have a personal best is just amazing. He is really special but he has his own opinions. If I don’t ask how he needs to be asked then rightfully so, he says no. Today he kept saying yes and I am so happy with him.” On her test: “For me, it was the best he has ever gone. When he went down the centerline and halted he was like ‘We can do this!’ and I was like ‘Awesome!’ He was really with me the entire time. I can’t really fault him for anything. If there were any issues it was probably mine. He was really great through the whole test.” On her future plans: “I have to move up to Young Riders because I am aging out so that is the plan. We aren’t sure what we are doing for winter yet but we will definitely go somewhere to do some international competitions and see what happens.” Mackenzie Peer – USEF Junior Rider Dressage Reserve National Champion On advancing from her third place finish last year: “It is so rewarding. You try so hard and you hope to come here and show your horse to the best of your ability so when it works out like this you feel on top of the world.” On her test: “I was super excited with my test, he was really with me. We did our walk, we did our trot, and I was like ‘We got this,’ then we went to the canter and he was with me. He was super on my aids and when I went to that extended canter he was like ‘let’s do this.’ It is always fun to feel that on a horse.” On her future plans: “I am actually leaving tomorrow to fly to Germany where I am going to spend a month riding with Johann Hinnemann. I am leaving the horses here but I will be riding. I will come back and ride at Regionals, then I actually move to California to ride with my trainer David Wightman full-time and work for him. I am super excited for that!” Isabelle Braden – USEF Junior Rider Dressage National Championship third place On continuing her success: “I am really proud of my horse and how he has put up with the traveling. He has really stayed with so well and I am really grateful to all of the people that have helped get me to these competitions, helped me find all of this success and supported me. [Thank you to] my trainer, Anneliese Vogt- Harber, my parents, USEF, USDF and everyone that has supported youth dressage.” On her test: “I thought my test was much better than yesterday and he definitely felt more comfortable in the big arena. Yesterday he got a little tense so I felt like I had a much more flowing, clean, mistake free test that I was really happy with.” On her future plans: “I don’t have big plans but I am aging out this year so next year we are hoping to move up to Young Riders. I want to go home and give [Dali De La Ferme] lots of rest and make sure he has recuperated and then maybe to Regionals and see where it goes this fall.” Lexie Kment – FEI Children Team Test winner On her test: “At the beginning it was a little wild but we got it under control and it felt really good. I think we got all of our stuff done today but looking forward to the next test we might want to work on our walk pirouette a little bit more.” On her partnership with Manatee: “This is my first time here but Manatee has been here before. He was here last year with my sister. We have been together for about a year now. He is just a really good boy. He is an off-the-track Thoroughbred but I don’t know how many races he actually won. He is just a good boy.” On her preparations for the Championships: “Leading up the championships we prepared by doing lots of [transitions] and worked on keeping control in the ring.” Carmen Stephens – FEI Children Team Test second place On her test: “It was pretty good. We definitely made a few mistakes but overall it was a solid test. The simple changes went pretty well. Hopefully we can get a clean serpentine in the next test. I will be really focusing on taking it one movement at a time, not rushing through and having fun.” On her partnership with Woldhoeve’s Silco: “We have been together since 2016 and he has brought me from training level to being here. He is a really sweet pony that is very well behaved most of the time but he does have some spunk every once in a while. What horse doesn’t!” Justine Boyer – FEI Children Team Test third place On her test: “I think it went really well for my first time being at Festival [of Champions] and after three weeks of not riding while on vacation. I would like more collection so that we can do the serpentine [tomorrow].” On her partnership with Lentisco XVIII: “We have been together for two years. We have been working up to Children’s and then fixing a few things in Children’s. The lengthenings are the most fun on him.”
Endel Ots Keeps Hold of Lead to Win USEF Intermediare I Dressage National Championships
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 24, 2019 – Returning for the final stage of the USEF Intermediaire I Dressage National Championship at the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions were 13 horse-and-rider combinations. Endel Ots and Lucky Strike, who led the division after dominating performances in the Prix St. Georges and Intermediate I earlier in the week, went three-for-three by winning Saturday’s Intermediate Freestyle and ultimately, the champion tricolor.
Ots and Lucky Strike, a 9-year-old Hanoverian gelding owned by Max Ots, performed their freestyle in the Kay Arena that featured music from the tv show ‘Mad Men’ as well as Frank Sinatra classics. The test was a real crowd pleaser, and earned the combination a score of 74.81%, three points higher than any of the other competitors. Their freestyle score, combined with their Prix St. Georges score of 74.5% and Intermediate I score of 73.853%, helped them finish with a total of 74.255% to take home the championship. Last year, Ots and Lucky Strike were named the Markel/USEF Developing Prix St. Georges Dressage National Champions, and this year they stepped up to the Intermediaire I Championship following a year of successes, including being named to the U.S. Dressage Team for the Pan American Games. Rebecca Rigdon and La Fariah, a 10-year-old Rhinelander mare owned by Rigdon and David Blake, claimed the reserve championship with a total score of 71.476%. Rigdon and La Fariah danced to music from ‘Claudio’ to earn a score of 73.85% in the freestyle, and prior to Saturday they earned a 70.294% in the Prix St. Georges and a 71.735% in the Intermediate I. Rigdon was invited to compete at the championships on a wild card after an injury following a qualifier for the Pan American Games earlier this year, and she was delighted that she and La Fariah were able to take home such a high placing after being out of the show ring since February. Finishing in third place was Sara Hassler aboard Leslie Malone’s Harmony’s Boitano, a 13-year-old KWPN gelding. The pair earned a score of 72.005%, and combined with their Prix St. Georges score of 71.206% and their Intermediate I score of 69.088%, they earned a total of 70.373%. Hassler and Harmony’s Boitano rode in their first CDI competition in Florida together earlier this year, and she expressed how special it was to place so well in the division not long after the gelding came back from a suspensory injury, performing back at the top of his game again. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Endel Ots – Prix St. Georges for the USEF Intermediaire I Dressage National Champion On being a back-to-back champion: “It has been wonderful! It is a great way to end a year that has been going super well and it really means a lot. My dad lives close by and to have him come by here and be able to see it. This has been great to come here for the four, five and six-year-olds and now the developing divisions. It has been wonderful and really a dream come true.” On Lucky Strike’s withdrawing from the Pan American Games: “I am pretty good at setting a boundary of feeling sorry for myself for a little bit of time but then I like to focus on goals, what’s next and where to do. It really helps me to not look backwards. Right when it happened I wanted to make sure he was okay, that there was nothing serious in there and that is was only superficial. I was very thankful for that. I tried to set clear goals and have a plan A to focus on and go for. It helps me to not look backwards because I can’t change anything that happened, I can only look forward and try to go for the next thing. I really try to be tunnel vision in that aspect. I was feeling pretty bad for 24 hours but I was like, ‘Okay, back to work’ to look for the next thing. I love Lamplight and I love coming here to see all of my friends from all over. It is a great experience. Rebecca Rigdon – Prix St. Georges for the USEF Intermediaire Dressage Reserve National Champion On her improvement: “It is absolutely fantastic. Coming in here as a wild card from an injury after the qualifier for the Pan Am team was really hard – it felt like things were done for the year. I am so grateful to USEF for the opportunity. I could not be happier with her as well. She has grown up considerably in the last couple of years.” On her freestyle: “She has her own more upbeat freestyle but under the circumstances it was a bit last minute and I confess, I have never ridden that freestyle before for the very same reason of focusing on the Prix St George and the I1 so that the Freestyle is such a bonus. The choreography is very easy and I wanted to do that on purpose since she hasn’t shown since last February. I wanted to make it an easy experience for her and get her as relaxed as possible. I was super happy with her, she was really good.” Sara Hassler – Prix St. Georges for the USEF Intermediaire Dressage National Championship third place On being at the U.S. Festival of Champions: “It is such an honor — look who I am sitting next to, it is pretty amazing! This horse and I did our first CDI in Wellington this year and he is only a year-and-a-half back from a terrible injury he had for quite a few years so his victory was getting here. It was huge. It is such an honor to have a horse like that to learn from and to allow me to ride with such incredible people that inspire me everyday! I honestly did not expect to come here and have this happen so I am just so grateful to his owner, she was so amazing to give me this opportunity. It is a once in a lifetime for me so I am extremely grateful.” On her freestyle: “I actually made the freestyle myself, choreography and music. I had never ridden it before and I actually did the last minute tweaks on it on the way down here in the truck while my dad drove so I am really glad it went okay! It was a really cool experience because this is actually my third freestyle I have ever ridden in my life so it was really fun and challenging. There were a few errors and I definitely could have done a lot better but I am still extremely happy that it went the way it did. Nothing glitched and it sounded like a real freestyle so I am excited about that.” On her horses injury: “He had two suspensory surgeries in the same leg and he also had a back injury at the same time. He ended up going to CSU in Colorado for about a year for healing. This Florida was his first season back, he was rehabbing all summer so its been a long ride and his owner was suggested to put him in a field to let him be done but she said that this horse is an opportunity for somebody and I am so grateful to be the one to do it.” Results: USEF Intermediaire I Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Endel Ots / Lucky Strike / Max Ots / 74.5 / 73.853 / 74.810 / 74.255 2. Rebecca Rigdon / La Fariah / Rebecca Rigdon / 70.294 / 71.735 / 73.850 / 71.476 3. Sara Hassler / Harmony’s Boitano / Leslie Malone / 71.206 / 69.088 / 72.005 / 70.373 4. Anna Marek / Einstein JP / Anna Marek / 69.353 / 71.088 / 70.080 / 70.243 5. Katie Johnson / Paxton / Kylee Lourie / 68.735 / 70.824 / 71.9 / 70.15 6. Kristina Harrison / Finley / Kristina Harrison / 70.324 / 68.647 / 71.090 / 69.684
Sonnenberg's Kain and Sole Mio Clinch Markel/Young Horse Dressage National Championships For Four and Five-Year-Olds
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 24, 2019 – As the morning sunlight shone through the trees surrounding the Frey Arena at Lamplight Equestrian Center, Michele Bondy and Sonnenberg’s Kain were named the Markel/USEF 4-Year-Old Dressage National Champions. Later in the day, Emily Miles and Sole Mio wowed the judges with a ‘10’ trot to strike gold in the Markel/USEF 5-Year-Old Dressage National Championship.
The Markel/USEF 4-Year-Old Dressage National Championship led the day of young horse competition, crowning Bondy, of Wilsonville, Oregon and the Sonnenberg Farm LLC’s KWPN gelding Sonnenberg’s Kain (El Copone–Girona T, Carlton Hill VDL).Bred by G. Talsma in Holland, the Sonnenberg’s Kain has only been partnered with Bondy for about eight months.The pair had a strong start to the championship during their first test on Wednesday earning an 8.46 and then they followed up in the final test with a score of 8.34. The judges awarded Sonnenberg’s Kain with a score of 9 for his high-quality, uphill canter, as well as an 8.5 for his submission score. Alice Tarjan and her Oldenburg mare, Summersby II (Sezuan–Summer Night, Sandro Hit) rode away with the reserve championship with an overall score of 8.18 after receiving the same score from the judges panel in both of the tests. The panel of judges were impressed with the elasticity and suspension of the mare, and commented on her potential once she is stronger in her balance and cadence. Bred in Germany by Nicole Wanning, Summersby II Tarjan bought her as a foal. At the end of her two-year-old year, Summersby II was started and she was shown in the Materiale at the Devon Breed Show where she won the Young Horse Championships in 2018. Following the conclusion of U.S. Festival of Champions Summersby II will return home for a rest before starting to learn lead changes for the 6-year-old year ahead. Completing the podium in the Markel/USEF 4-Year-Old Dressage National Championship was Jackie Ahl-Eckhaus and her KWPN Dutch Warmblood gelding Kitalis MVS (Vitalis–Ember MVS, Westpoint). A horse breeder since 1994, Ahl-Eckhaus not only owns Kitalis, but she also bred and developed him at her base in San Luis Obispo, California. The pair improved their four place score of 7.92 from Wednesday, to receive an 8.18 from judges during Saturday mornings competition. Ahl-Eckhaus accredited their overall score of 8.076 and their third place finish to the confident brain the young horse posses and the judges complimented the horse for his three quality gaits and elasticity in his walk. In Saturday’s test, Petra Warlimont actually rode away with the highest score of 8.44 aboard the Lusitano stallion, Leon De Matecana (Dragon Comando–Godiva Matecana), but their score of 7.26 from the Preliminary test kept them out overall in fourth place. Following the 4-year-old division, the Markel/USEF 5-Year-Old Dressage National Championship took to the arena. Fifteen young horses trotted down centerline throughout the afternoon, hoping to display what they have learned so far in their development. One extraordinary horse however, caught the attention of judges for the second year in a row, Sole Mio (Stanford–Donna-Rafaela, Donnerschwee), the 2018 Markel/USEF 4-year-old Dressage National Champion owned by Leslie Waterman. Returning to Lamplight aboard Sole Mio, Miles was focused on adding another title to her Markel/USEF Dressage National Championship resume, giving her a win in each division of the national championships she has been competing in for ten years. Judges were impressed by the Hanoverian stallion bred in Germany by ZG Wencek, awarding him an impressive score of 10 for his striking trot and a 9.5 for their prospective score. Sole Mio showed off strong development since winning his 4-year-old title, increasing his canter score with more ground cover and uphill balance. For their test, judges awarded a 9.16, giving Sole Mio his second national championship title with an overall score of 9.056. In the reserve national championship position was Rebecca Rigdon and Ad Astra Collective’s Jagger (Apache–Volumia, Osmium). Rigdon and the KWPN gelding, who was bred by S. Van Zeeland in Holland, rode to a score or 8.58 for Saturday’s performance, giving them a total score of 8.356. According to Rigdon, the test was Jagger’s best he has ever had and the judges remarks, highlighted with a 9 for their canter and 8.8 for prospective, reflected her ride well. Merita Hagren of Whitehouse Station, New Jersey, and Jida Selly A earned the final position in the top three. Despite riding with a broken hand, Hadren and the KWPN mare owned by Cesar Parra and bred by A. Adriaansen in Holland, received a score of 8.44 from judges, giving them a total of 8.136. This is Hagren’s second time at the U.S. Festival of Champions and she hopes to return with the mare in the coming year for the Markel/USEF 6-year-old Dressage National Championships. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Michele Bondy – Markel/USEF 4-Year-Old Dressage National Champion On Sonnenberg’s Kain: “When we got him in November from Holland the goal was to do four year olds but from getting him there to going to the qualifiers and now being here, it is just a huge thing. It takes so much time and so much effort, and the horse has to be ready too. You just don’t know if they are going to be ready, be able to tolerate it and if they are going to handle the atmosphere. He has just surpassed every expectation I have had. To bring him here and, beside the awards, he has been really quiet and so good, kind hearted and fun. It is a three day trip from Oregon so he has been a superstar. ” On choosing Sonnenberg’s Kain: “Sonnenberg Farm bought him as a weanling to be a stallion prospect. When he turned three he didn’t quite have the stallion presence so we decided to geld him, bring him over here and see what we could do. His bloodlines are super good Dutch horses, his movement was super, he was super uphill even though he was a foal, plus super supple and elastic so that is why they bought him and I was the one left to ride him. He came in November and the rest has been history!” On the judge’s remarks: “Their comments both Thursday and today were spot on.The canter was super so I was really happy to hear he got the 9 because I feel that is what he really deserves. Today he was a little hotter. It is a long week so you don’t really know how they are going to be everyday but I thought judges were great. I couldn’t be happier really. I felt the judging was super this year – I knew what they were looking for and they were rewarding really correct basics for young horses.” On being at the championship: “I came last year with a 6-year-old who finished 11th or something. This year I wanted to try again with a 4-year-old and hopefully next year we will have more horses coming as well. The facility and location is gorgeous. It really gives young horses a plan of where they should be. Not every horse is going to make it or they might not be ready for whatever reason but it gives you an idea of what they are looking for each year and what to work on, whether you come here or not. Then, when you come to these championships and see the quality of horses and riding it really inspires you to keep going. You see struggles too because it’s not butterflies and rainbows everyday, its training horses. It is a super venue, it’s far for us but totally worth coming each year.” Alice Tarjan – Markel/USEF 4-Year-Old Dressage National Reserve Champion On placing in the top two: “I am really happy with the horse today — she was a good girl and she showed what she can do. She has been pretty consistent all week so I am pleased with that. I like bringing up young horses so we have a lot of them on the farm. I have a lot of opportunities to learn how to do it correctly or incorrectly.” On what makes Summersby II special: “I bought this horse as a foal. She is a very beautiful horse and it has been fun bringing her along. She has been relatively easy — she can be a little hot sometimes but she is not that bad. She has been super behaved all week so I am really happy with that. I wanted a Sezuan [sired foal] and her mother had done really well in her mare performance. With [Summersby II] she did Materiale at Devon last year. She was successful with that and she did two 4-year-old shows this year and then came here.” On her test: “I think that she got three decent gaits to start with and she has a nice uphill balance. She does have a hard time holding her balance but she is four and she has these big gaits. She just has to develop more. Their 4-year-old year is working on developing the gaits and the balance so we will do that a little bit more. Then we will start playing around with some counter canter and start training her a little bit more rather than trying to just focus on the test.” On how long she has been focusing on young horses: “Since I started dressage because I wanted to ride at Devon and I looked at the prize list to find the cheapest way I could do it was to buy a foal and wait until it was three becuase there was no qualification. I figured a Fourth Level horse would be really expensive and I probably couldn’t ride at that level yet. I really enjoy training them so that is what I have done. I have bred a couple but not very many, I usually buy them as foals or at the latest at the end of their 3-year-old year.” Jackie Ahl-Eckhaus – Markel/USEF 4-Year-Old Dressage National Championship third place On her test: “I am excited about this horse everyday that I ride him. He has a good brain, he tries hard and as he gets stronger, het gets better. He was really listening and he didn’t look around. To me, the highlight was just being here. We came from California so it is a long drive but it is a lot of fun. The young horses get a lot of good exposure and as a rider it keeps you on our toes. We get to see a lot of the top young horses in the country and step up a little bit more, so I like that about the program as well. I would like to thank Christine [Traurig], she is great. We have a huge country and I wish we could meet with her every couple of months. I would also like to thank Kathleen Raine, she had been helping me for the past 15 years and I don’t get to work with her regularly but she is always there. Also, my husband because he supports me 200%.” On breeding Kitalis MVS: “I started breeding Dutch Warmbloods in 1994 and I have had a number of them through the years. I just pick a stallion that I love for one reason or another, look at my mare and see if it would be a great match and this one has turned out to be everything you could want in a really nice horse. Not that the others haven’t been good horses, but he has a little extra special everything. He has a very relaxed mind and will to work so was like hitting the gold spot of breeding. You can breed a lot of horses and not have one that has everything. I have been very fortunate and we will see how far we can get. I think he has the talent and the mind to do it.” Emily Miles – Markel/USEF 5-Year-Old Dressage National Champion On winning back-to-back championships: “This was actually the last division I had yet to win. Wake Up went to Verden and then he didn’t come here because the times were so close. Now, I have won every division and that is also kind of fun! This is my tenth year here and I love Lamplight. I mean look at the day we have, look how pretty it is, look at the trees! I am from Kansas so this is home to me. On her test: “I was so nervous for today. I think because I love that horse — no one could understand how awesome I think he is so I just wanted everyone else to know how awesome I think he is too. I am blessed to ride him. Last year the commentary was that his trot is brilliant but that the canter still looked like a 4-year-olds canter. For him to come out this year and actually get a higher canter score than trot score [in the first test], and today our canter wasn’t as good, but it is still a super solid high canter score. That is where I think he improved the most, in building the strength to hold all of that canter work. Christine [Traurig] told me to ride shoulder-in forever and I think it is paying off. I am so proud of him and he has had a tough summer with me trying to qualify for Ermelo and going to Ermelo. He had five days off, I rode him once, then came here. I just adore him and I am so thankful to Leslie [Waterman] for letting me ride him and trusting me with him.” On receiving a 10: “He has got a phenomenal trot. Sometimes he has a lot of gears to him though so I am always wondering if I should ask for more because it feels so nice and easy. My mother said I came out and showed so much range but that it was effortless for him, which it is, it is just him doing his thing. When I heard that ten I was so excited.” On what is next for her: “My horse is going home and having a really long rest. He is going to relax, do some trotting poles, hack around a little bit and then we will get into flying changes and aim for the 6-year-olds.” On the U.S. Festival of Champions: “I would like to thank this program because it is so amazing to have a place to showcase young horses. I think it is really special to cultivate a broad base and having coming back from Verden, which is like the Hanoverian center of the world, you see how much worth is placed on foals, young stallions and young horses. I think it is so important that in the United States we also have a really great place to showcase our young horses and show that this what our goal is for the average horse too. Yes, some horses are going to trot for a 10, but horses that trot for a 7 or a 6.5 need the same fundamentals of being able to start to carry behind, show uphillness, having lightness and doing transitions with adjustability so I think it is so important to be able to have that showcase for young horses. Then the fact that we are right next door to the big tour and the small tour horses is a really special thing. It is amazing that we get to have both of these championships at the Festival together. It is an amazing program to be a part of.” Rebecca Rigdon – Markel/USEF 5-Year-Old Dressage Reserve National Champion On improving this year: “It is fantastic. That horse gave my every single ounce of energy, strength and everything that he had to give today. I was a little apprehensive because the Freestyle was going on but he relaxed as the test went on and let me ride him a little bit more. I got a little greedy at one point and had to remember that he was not twelve, he was five. I am really happy he had his best test here at Lamplight.” On his strong points: “I truly think he is meant to be a Grand Prix horse and that was the whole reason that I got him. He is built so uphill, he as three correct gaits. He might not be the best raw mover out of the starting gate but he is so trainable that I think that is more important than anything. He is absolutely a very special horse for the future.” Merita Hagren – Markel/USEF 5-Year-Old Dressage National Championship third place On her performance: “I am here for only the second time ever. I have been working with [Cesar Parra’s] Performance Farms for five years now here in America. I am so thankful that he gave me the chance with this young five year old. She is such a sweet thing but hot and nice – I just love to ride her. We have been training a lot and we showed several shows in New Jersey so I was really excited that she qualified. Yesterday was my mistake, we had a little extra flying change so that brought the score down a lot. I wanted to show what the horse could do because she is amazing.” On her broken hand: “I broke my hand last week – I came off of another 5-year-old. [Jida Selly A] is helping me a lot because I can’t do as much as I should. She has been the sweetest thing on earth and I think she knows I am not there so she figures to do it for me.” Results: Markel/USEF Young Horse 4-Year-Old Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / 4-Year-Old Prelim / 4-Year-Old Final / Total Score 1. Michele Bondy / Sonnenberg’s Kain / Sonnenberg Farm LLC / 8.46 / 8.434 / 8.388 2. Alice Tarjan / Summersby II / Alice Tarjan / 8.18 / 8.18 / 8.18 3. Jackie Ahl-Eckhaus / Kitalis MVS / Jackie Ahl-Eckhaus / 7.92 / 8.18 / 8.076 4. Petra Warlimont / Leon De Matecana / 7.26 / 8.44 / 7.968 5. Ashlyn Dodge / Kasanova DG / DG Bar Ranch / 7.82 / 7.74 / 7.772 6. Craig Stanley / Kayenne CWS / Craig Stanley / 7.92 / 7.56 / 7.704 Results: Markel/USEF Young Horse 5-Year-Old Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / 5-Year-Old Prelim / 5-Year-Old Final / Total Score 1. Emily Miles / Sole Mio / Leslie Waterman / 8.90 / 9.16 / 9.056 2. Rebecca Rigdon / Jagger / Ad Astra Collective / 8.02 / 8.58 / 8.356 3. Merita Hagren / Jida Selly A / Cesar Parra / 7.68 / 8.44 / 8.136 4. Alyssa Doverspike / Figaro / 7.68 / 7.88 / 7.8 5. Nadine Schwartsman / Jhocolate R / Nadine Schwartsman / 8.26 / 7.44 / 7.768 6. Marcus Orlob / Spirit Of Joy / 7.92 / 7.54 / 7.692
Kathy Priest and Damon's Fantasy Take Home Markel/USEF Developing Horse Prix St. Georges Dressage National Championship Tricolor
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 24, 2019 – To close out competition in the Frey Arena, Kathy Priest rode Damon’s Fantasy to the Markel/USEF Developing Prix St. Georges Dressage National Championship title with an overall score of 72.598%.
Priest and Damon’s Fantasy (Damon Hill–Frascaya, Florencio I) led the charge following their performance on Wednesday for the first leg of the division, the Prix St. Georges. With only fractions of a point standing Priest and the second place position, the pair laid it all on the line in their final test for a score of 72.5%, allowing the duo to hang on to their lead. Bred in Germany by Hans and Britta Scherbring, the 8-year-old Oldenburg mare has been owned by Priest since she was a 4-year-old and is expected to move up to the Intermediate II division by the end of the season. Following very closely being the winner, the red tricolor ribbon was awarded to Emily Miles and Java Dulce (Jazz–JJ Dolche Gabbana, Deemster) with an overall score of 72.02%. Java Dulce was bred in Norway by JJ Horses and is owned by Leslie Waterman. Miles, who was coming off of a win earlier in the day in the Markel/USEF 5-Year-Old Dressage National Championship, rode the 8-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding to a 71.667% in the Developing Prix St. Georges on Saturday, maintaining their second place position that they had claimed after the Prix St. Georges earlier in the week. New to the top three in the division was amateur rider Barbie Asplundh and her partner of a year-and-a-half, Gorgeous (Charmeur–Andecimoes, Special D). The black gelding was bred in Holland by LCCM Van Erp. During the first test of the division Asplundh and the 8-year-old KWPN gelding earned a 70.882% to place them fourth in the class. Together, the duo laid down a strong performance in the Developing Prix St. Georges to bump them up to third with a 70.792%. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Kathy Priest – Markel/USEF Developing Horse Prix St. Georges Dressage National Champion On what it means to win the national championships: “It is very exciting. We came in on Monday with four horses that we had qualified, [Damon’s Fantasy], a young rider and two 6-year-olds. This mare is one that I have had since she was four so I was looking forward to doing this with her. The facility is so amazing. It is such an amazing place to come to and it is very friendly for the horses as well, especially for the young and developing horses because you are not leaving the warmup and going into an inclosed stadium. It is also customer friendly as far as the people go and the stabling is nice. Everybody has been amazing so we are thrilled to be here.” On her test: “I was really happy that she had really good energy in there — that is what you have to have for the future. I felt like even with a few little mistakes I could really get her back and get her concentrated. She stayed wanting to go for it. I feel like she has the quality [for Grand Prix] and we have already started some of it so we will just continue on.” On what is next for Damon’s Fantasy: “I think now we won’t do anything and just train until Florida. I had to stop [schooling] the one tempis before this so I will pick those back up, start working a bit more piaffe-passage, get ready to do a few CDIs and hopefully be ready for Intermediate II by the end of the season.” Emily Miles – Markel/USEF Developing Horse Prix St. Georges Dressage National Reserve Champion On what it means to do well with a new horse in the division: “I was so thrilled with Java. I had absolutely no expectations for him this week. I was so excited for him to be here. It has not been the easiest road with him. He is a super awesome horse to work with an he learns fast but we had some soundness issues. I have to give a huge kudos to Leslie [Waterman], his owner, because she 100% believed in him all of the time. We joked that he was a bad boyfriend for me for a while and he wouldn’t commit to the relationship! I am just so proud of him for putting in two consistent tests. In terms of me, you are only as good as the horses you get to sit on and each one teaches you so much. Java has taught me so much about sensitivity. Wake Up was not the most sensitive horse out there and I could push him. This is a very different ride for me in that difference of horses is educational for me as a trainer and a rider. I absolutely love him. I think that he has a huge future ahead and I am excited that he gets to be here.” Barbie Asplundh – Markel/USEF Developing Horse Prix St. Georges Dressage National Championship third place On her partnership with Gorgeous: “I got him about a year-and-a-half ago and he makes me look good. I’m an amateur, these people ride more in a day than I ride in a week so to be able to keep up with them I need a horse that is cooperative and a big mover. He goes as well as I ride so for me the highlight was every time I stopped riding today, I started again. I still have to work on what my coach calls my equitation. As long as I am riding well, he goes well. He is a gift to me. I have been doing this since 1979 and he is the best horse I have ever had. He is gorgeous and I am blessed to have him.” On her trainer: “My trainer is Catherine Haddad-Staller and she has rocked my world. She has worked with me for seven years or so. Jennifer Haven, who is my sports psychology coach on the West Coast that I have never even met, has also turned my competition world around too. It takes a village. You are not out there alone for sure. I felt like I was carrying quite a few people on [Gorgeous’] board with me. It was so much fun to be here. I had never been to Lamplight before and I had no idea it was this fabulous! We are definitely coming back!” Results: Markel/USEF Developing Horse Prix St. Georges Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / FEI PSG Score (40%) / Developing PSG Score (60%) / Total 1. Kathy Priest / Damon’s Fantasy / Kathy Priest / 72.745 / 72.5 / 72.598 2. Emily Miles / Java Dulce / Leslie Waterman / 72.549 / 71.667 / 72.02 3. Barbie Asplundh / Gorgeous / Barbie Asplundh / 70.882 / 70.792 / 70.828 4. Lindsey Holleger / Fenomenal JW / Julia Whitfield / 70.539 / 70.125 / 70.291 5. Cesar Parra / GK Don Cesar / Cesar Parra / 70.245 / 69.875 / 70.023 6. Heather McCarthy / Au Revoir / Sandi Chohany / 68.627 / 70.583 / 69.801
Priest, Bondy and Miles Dominate the Day in the Markel/USEF Young and Developing Horse Dressage National Championships
Wayne, Ill. - Aug. 22, 2019 - Competition in the Frey Arena at the Lamplight Equestrian Center began with the Prix St. Georges for the Markel/USEF Developing Prix St. Georges Dressage National Championship. Later in the day the panel of judges were impressed with the young horses, seeing the 4 and 5-year-olds complete their first tests in the Markel/USEF 4-Year-Old Dressage National Championship and the Markel/USEF 5-Year-Old Dressage National Championship.
Kentucky native Kathy Priest rode to the victory in the Prix St. Georges, scoring a 72.745% with Damon’s Fantasy (Damon Hill–Frascaya, Florencio I), her own 8-year-old Oldenburg mare that she first competed with in December 2018. After competing throughout the Adequan Global Dressage Festival in the winter with good results, the pair returned to Kentucky to top multiple Developing Prix St. Georges classes and qualify for the finals. Looking forward to the next test in the championship, Priest is hoping to add more expression in her movements and show a fresh horse, as she explained Damon’s Fantasy is already comfortable with the bustling environment of the show grounds. Emily Miles and Leslie Waterman’s Java Dulce (Jazz–JJ Dolche Gabbana, Deemster), an 8-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding, finished in second place with a score of 72.549%. Miles was thrilled with the gelding’s capabilities that shone through, noting that although he had once been qualified for the championships as a 5-year-old and been top ranked in the nation, he had struggled with soundness issues for several years. After making a full recovery, Java Dulce proved to Miles that he hadn’t skipped a beat in his training. Mike Suchanek and Duchess L (Damsey FRH–De La Rosa, De Niro), an 8-year-old Hanovarian mare owned by Louise Leatherdale, rounded out the top three with a score of 70.980%. Suchanek noted that the young mare by Damsey FRH exhibits many of the famous dressage sire’s desirable traits, and that their harmony and excellent trot work contributed to their consistent ride and high placing in the class. In the 4-Year-Old Test for the Markel/USEF 4-Year-Old Dressage National Championship, Michele Bondy and Sonnenberg’s Kain took the top honors with a score of 8.46. Sonnenberg’s Kain (El Copone–Girona T, Carlton Hill VDL), a KWPN gelding owned by Sonnenberg Farm LLC, was rewarded by the judges for his uphill and energetic canter that was ground covering and elastic. The canter earned the 4-year-old his highest score of 8.8, while the walk earned him a score of 8.2 for its ground covering qualities and excellent use of his body. With a score of 8 for his elastic trot, an 8.6 for submission and and 8.7 for overall impression, Sonnenberg’s Kain received the total of 8.46 to take him to the top of the leaderboard. Having been partnered with the gelding for eight months, Bondy has enjoyed helping him along in his development with the goal of qualifying for the national championships. The pair made the three-day journey from Oregon to the Lamplight Equestrian Center, and are looking to add a Young Horse National Championship title to their resume. Finishing in second place was Alice Tarjan and the Oldenburg mare, Summersby II (Sezuan–Summer Night, Sandro Hit). The mare was awarded a score of 8.5 for her energetic and uphill trot that possessed good activity in the joints, while another 8.5 was awarded for her lofty canter. Along with a score of 7.7 for her ground-covering walk, a submission score of 7.9 and a score of 8.3 for overall impression, Tarjan and Summersby II earned a total score of 8.18 to finish second. Tying for third place was Craig Stanley riding Kayenne CWS (Negro–Caliente DG, OO Seven), and Jackie Ahl-Eckhaus riding Kitalis MVS (Vitalis–Ember MVS, Westpoint). Stanley and Kayenne CWS, a KWPN mare owned and bred by Stanley, were given a score of 8.2 for the mare’s uphill canter and active hind legs. Her rhythmic trot and forward tendency earned her a 7.9 in the gait, while her clear walk earned her a 7.4. Combined with a submission score of 8 for her willingness to work and her overall impression score of 8.1, Kayenne CWS was given a total score of 7.92. Ahl-Eckhaus and Kitalis MVS, her own KWPN gelding, earned a score of 8.2 for her ground covering and elastic walk, and a 7.8 for her uphill canter. Her steady and engaged trot earned her a score of 7.7, and she received an 8 for submission and a 7.9 for overall impression to give her the total of 7.92. In the 5-Year-Old Test for the Markel/USEF 5-Year-Old Dressage National Championship, it was deja vu for Emily Miles as she rode into the first place position with Sole Mio (Stanford–Donna-Rafaela, Donnerschwee), a Hanoverian stallion owned by Leslie Waterman. After being named the Markel/USEF 4-Year-Old Dressage National Champions at the 2018 competition, Miles felt the pressure to return to the Lamplight Equestrian Center and claim a top placing once again with the young horse class. Just recently, Miles and Sole Mio attended the Longines FEI WBFSH World Breeding Dressage Championships for Young Horses in Ermelo, the Netherlands at the beginning of August. The experience offered Miles a great deal of education on the sport and a new found confidence in her riding, and the philosophies she learned about reflected in her riding of the young stallion. Miles and Sole Mio received an overall score of 8.9 to take the victory, being awarded an outstanding score of 9 for his light, uphill canter with bending joints and flowing transitions. He was also given a score of 9.2 for submission and willingness to work, 8.9 for his elastic trot with excellent cadence, and an 8.2 for his ground covering walk. Nadine Schwartsman and her own KWPN stallion Jhocolate R (Freestyle–Cleopatra, Jazz), finished in second place with a total score of 8.26. The young stallion, who she fondly calls ‘Fetch’ in the barn, has been with her since he was a weanling and has been in training with her since. Jhocolate R received a high score of 8.9 for his energy efficient walk, an 8.8 for submission, a 7.9 for his rhythmic canter and a 7.4 for his trot. Combined with an overall impression score of 8.3, their final score of 8.26 moved them up to second on the leaderboard. Rebecca Rigdon and Ad Astra Collective’s KWPN gelding Jagger (Apache–Volumia, Osmium) finished in third place with a score of 8.02. Jagger received a score of 8.3 for his energetic and uphill canter, an 8 for his elastic walk, a 7.8 for his trot, and a 7.8 for submission. The overall impression score of 8.2 helped to bump their total score to a 8.02 and give them the yellow ribbon. Coming up next in the Markel/USEF Developing Prix St. Georges Dressage National Championship will be the 6-Year-Old Preliminary Test at 8:30 a.m. Friday, Aug. 23. For results and starting times, visit Foxvillage. Live streaming will be available on the USEF Network Full competition schedule, click here. Results: FEI Prix St Georges Test (Developing Prix St. George Championship) Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Kathy Priest / Damon’s Fantasy / Kathy Priest / 72.745 2. Emily Miles / Java Dulce / Leslie Waterman / 72.549 3. Mike Suchanek / Duchess L / Louise Leatherdale / 70.980 4. Barbie Asplundh / Gorgeous / Barbie Asplundh / 70.882 5. Lindsey Holleger / Fenomenal JW / Julia Whitfield / 70.539 6. Cesar Parra / GK Don Cesar / Cesar Parra / 70.245 Results: USEF 4-Year-Old Preliminary Test Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Michele Bondy / Sonnenberg’s Kain / Sonnenberg Farm LLC / 8.46 2. Alice Tarjan / Summersby II / Alice Tarjan / 8.18 3. Jackie Ahl-Eckhaus / Kitalis MVS / Jackie Ahl-Eckhaus / 7.92 4. Craig Stanley / Kayenne CWS / Craig Stanley / 7.92 5. Nadine Schwartsman / Karmelo R / Nadine Schwartsman / 7.84 6. Ashlyn Dodge / Kasanova DG / DG Bar Ranch / 7.82 Results: USEF 5-Year-Old Preliminary Test Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Emily Miles / Sole Mio / Leslie Waterman / 8.90 2. Nadine Schwartsman / Jhocolate R / Nadine Schwartsman / 8.26 3. Rebecca Rigdon / Jagger / Ad Astra Collective / 8.02 4. Marcus Orlob / Spirit Of Joy / 7.92 5. Maureen Sterling / Floris King / 7.72 6. Alyssa Doverspike / Figaro / 7.68 7. Merita Hagren / Jida Selly A / 7.68 FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Kathy Priest – Prix St. Georges Test winner On her test: “I was really happy with it. It was a mistake free test and she tries really hard, so that makes it special. I thought her trot work was really pretty and easy. I thought the canter half passes were nice, the changes were good and pirouettes are always a work in progress, so overall I thought it was steady and pleasant. I would like to do more of the same in the next test but maybe a little bit better. She is not bothered by the atmosphere so I need her to go in feeling a little fresh, rested and wanting to do it again.” On being at the Lamplight Equestrian Center: “I don’t think [Damon’s Fantasy] has been to Lamplight before. She is really good in the atmosphere. This is such a beautiful facility and it is so inviting for the horses, especially for the young horses because you have a nice warm up but then you are not totally apart from the arena so it is a really big positive.” Emily Miles – Prix St. Georges Test second place On her test: “This is my tenth year at Lamplight so I am so excited to be back — I love it here! This was an awesome test because he stayed with me and was really quiet. He can get a little hot and tense but he stayed with me. It was a challenge because I only had ten days to ride him before coming here after being gone for six weeks so this was really a tribute to my mother who kept him going for those six weeks. Good job, Mom! Thank you! I was super pleased. I had no expectations with him. He came in second so I was like ‘Way to go, bud!’” On Java Dulce’s story: “This is his first time here. He has had a very rough road and has been lame for about two years of his life. He qualified for the five year olds, was top-ranked in the country and then fell out with lameness issues. Doctor [Phillip] Hammock in Tennessee took him over and did some pretty experimental treatment stuff. He was one of the first horses in the U.S. to get fat cells injected into different places – it was totally experimental, he was like ‘I don’t know if this is going to work but it is broken otherwise so we are going to try and fix it,’ and he did! Now, a few years later, he is back so it is really fantastic and totally unexpected. We are thrilled!” On Java Dulce’s personality: “Java is the most loving horse, he would be in your pocket all the time if he could. He is hot though, and he gets in his brain and thinks ‘Oh shoot, I did something wrong! Oh my goodness!’ For me, it takes a lot to be like ‘Okay, calm it back down, do something else and we will come back to it later.’ It has been good for me to learn that and be forced to grow as a rider. On the ground he is the most personable horse, he just loves everyone.” Mike Suchanek – FEI Prix St Georges Test third place On his test: “I really enjoyed [Duchess L’s] trot work today. It was really nice and she stayed together with me. We had a little trouble in the changes but I thought it was overall, a good test.” On developing Duchess L: “She has been wonderful! She loves to work and she reminds me a lot of Damsey [FRH] himself – she looks a lot like him. In training, she has just been a joy to work with.” Michele Bondy – USEF 4-Year-Old Preliminary Test winner On her test: “We had a really nice, supple, soft ride. [Sonnenberg’s Kain] was great, there was nothing I could complain about. He went in there and did his job, and that is the most I can ask from him.” On the atmosphere: “When we were going around and people were clapping he got a little excited but then he just went in and got right to work and it didn’t bother him — he was like a champion. You just never know how the four year olds are going to be; if they are going to be wild or if they are going to be tired, but he was just perfect. I can’t wait for Saturday to see what we get.” On her partnership with Sonnenberg’s Kain: “He was imported from Europe in November so it has been about 8 months. He came already started so I just took the ride instead. It has been a lot of trust building. Nine months ago I would have never thought I could walk him on the buckle here and not care – he is just so great. I spent a lot of time with him in his stall, he is super playful and he has the best character. For me, it has been mostly spending time with him. I groom him myself as much as I can and really try to handle him as much as I can. It is just me and him so he is kind of crabby with other people sometimes when he is tried, but when it’s me he is like ‘Ugh, it’s mom, it’s fine.’ I really like the relationship you get with young horses, especially as they grow and develop.” On her preparations for the championships: “Well, I’m from Oregon so it’s a three day trek one way. Basically, it was just accumulating everything the judges have said in the last few months of showing and trying to get him soft, bending and quiet. Once we were here it was just seeing what the atmosphere is like, seeing how the other horses were doing, being accommodating to that and doing our best.” On the judge’s remarks: “I thought the judges were spot on. We struggled early in the season trying to figure out what they wanted, but today everything was spot on. I was a little worried to see what they would say but I felt like everything was as good as I expected, if not better – I couldn’t have hoped for more, really. I always worry about what is going to happen and what they are going to say. If I thought it was amazing and they didn’t then you wonder, but it was great – no complaints.” On Sonnenberg’s Kain’s canter: “The canter was amazing. In general, he has always been very impressive but a little too enthusiastic sometimes. Over the last few months, we have really got him to be super steady, easy and reliable, especially as a four year old. His canter has always been amazing – a dream to ride.” Alice Tarjan – USEF 4-Year-Old Preliminary Test second place On her test: “We broke a couple of times so we have a little settling and work to do. The horse was really good and I am happy that she has been well behaved. Her energy level was good today — she started a little wild and then she was a little tired but today we were just right. It is a work in progress, as always.” On her partnership with Summersby II: “I bought her as a foal. It has been fun! She did the Materiale [Fillies/Mares 3, 4, and 5yo] last year and then I brought her to Devon so our goal was to qualify for these championships this year to get her out and give her more exposure.” On the judge’s remarks: “Yes, [I did agree with them]. She can be a little looky and they are young horses, of course, so they look and get a little tight in the neck. We need to keep working on the relaxation through her back – that is an ongoing thing many young horses face so it is just a work in progress.” On Summersby II: “She is a good type, she has a good hind leg and she has three basic gaits. She is built very uphill and she is decently rideable. You can start with all of the potential in the world but you still have to train it and ride it.” Emily Miles – USEF 5-Year-Old Preliminary Test winner On Sole Mio: “[Sole Mio] is the bomb! He is a fantastic horse. Everyday I get on him I am like ‘Ugh, I love this horse!’ From the first step he is so natural, his work is not work. He has no clue he does work and that is a gift, he is gifted.” On her test: “I felt very prepared for this. We spent a lot of time training for World Championships and I can’t thank USEF and the whole program enough for believing in us to send us over there. Christine [Traurig] was instrumental in helping organize everything. She helped me so much with the strategic part of it with qualifying scores and then figuring out what we are most comfortable doing. She comes to our place for clinics and then to have her see us in Ermelo, then here, that continuity with Christine [Traurig] in the background has been so helpful. Of course, my mother is always the backbone of it. I have to thank [Sole Mio] because he went over there, did the [Longines FEI WBFSH World Breeding Dressage Championships for Young Horses], was home for six days and I rode him once during those six days. [He] rested and took a deep breath and then when he got here he was pretty darn hot the next day. He came out today and was like ‘I got this, Emily. I got you,’ so I was so proud of him and I have to thank him. He is an unbelievable teammate.” On returning the year after winning the 4-year-old Championships: “I felt like there was a little bit of pressure. There are high expectations and it is a lot easier, at least for me, to go in and think ‘nobody knows me, I will just go around my test’ but I felt like people were going to watch him. I didn’t put the pedal to the metal like crazy but I was super happy with how fluid he was, how light he was and how he stayed with me. The judges did an awesome job of seeing his potential. They commented on his transitions and when I was riding the test I was like ‘Oh, he came back nice in that shoulder in’ so I really felt so glad that they rewarded that. I was a little bit nervous for this test but I was super proud of him. I should have known he would be there for me because he is that kind of guy.” On what she leaned in at the World Championships: “What did he learn? I don’t know but I learned a ton! You can never hear it enough and I think we all hear it and we all understand it, but to see how to create uphill balance, lowering in the croupe, lightness in the front, the chest and the withers, and that connection in horse after horse, I think I learned the most. He learned that their hay tasted funny, he didn’t get to watch everybody. I think what you learn in the experience and the knowledge that I gained by just watching is gold! My biggest take away was ‘Wow, those horses are engaged at four and five, they are coming underneath and sitting, they are light in the front and it has to look easy because you put them in a position where it is easy for them.’ They have incredible horses and riders there and it is always inspirational.” Nadine Schwartsman – USEF 5-Year-Old Preliminary Test second place On her test: “I think he did the best test he ever has in his career so far, so that was excellent timing on his part because he can be quite opinionated. Getting a big submission score on him is a really big deal and I am so grateful to him.” On how she got Jhocolate R: “I raised this one from a baby. He came from the same breeder as my four year old. We actually went to buy a different foal and he fetched a stick and brought it to my husband, who is not a horse person, and he played fetch for 15 minutes with him! My husband decided that he was going to buy the horse. I told him no but he did it anyway and he actually pays for everything, takes care of everything and comes to see him in the barn. That’s it, this is his horse and he will never be for sale.” On Jhocolate R: “He is his own person so when he wants to have a good ride then you have a good ride and if he doesn’t want to have a good ride then you just have to have a good sense of humor! I have had a lot of patience with him and I feel like now, in his five-year-old year, it is starting to pay off. Last year, in his four-year-old year, we spent the entire first day bucking through the first test, so we have definitely come a long way in a year.” Rebecca Rigdon – USEF 5-Year-Old Preliminary Test third place On her test: “I was super happy with [Jagger]. He was a little bit tense and a little bit sucked back at times then he would open up and be his normal self, a little bit like a turtle.” On Jagger’s development: “He was here last year and was reserve champion in the four year olds. He has developed a great deal in the last year. He is much stronger, he has grown three inches, he has put on a lot of weight and muscle and he has changed a lot. I am super happy with him. He is the most honest, sweet [horse]. He is as good as you ride him, he is a really neat horse.”
Bacon and Asher Make Great Strides in Day Two of U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 22, 2019 – The U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions continued on Thursday, August 22, drawing some of the nation’s top youth dressage combinations to one of America’s most beautiful horse show facilities, the Lamplight Equestrian Center. Stiff competition made for an action-packed day as riders and horses made the next step in claiming national championship titles. Topping the first pony class of the week was Lucienne Bacon on Bonnaroo in the FEI Pony Rider Team Test, while Lauren Asher and West Side made quite the comeback from yesterday’s performance by winning the Grand Prix 16-25 Test.
In the FEI Pony Rider Team Test, it was 15-year-old Bacon and her very own Bonnaroo who topped the ranks. The Californian rode the 10-year-old Weser-Ems German Riding Pony mare to a score of 68.810% from the judges, a test she was very proud of. ‘Bonnie’ and Bacon have had a partnership for two and a half years now and with the help of trainer Hillary Martin, their success has come to fruition. Bonnaroo is no stranger to the winner’s circle at Lamplight as she won the 2015 USEF Seat Medal National Finals as well as the 2016 USEF Pony Rider Dressage National Championships with her previous rider Julia Lee Barton. Receiving the red ribbon with a score of 67.476% was Hannah Devine and Masterpiece, a 15-year-old Swedish Sport Pony gelding owned by Devine herself. After just over a year and a half together, the pair won the FEI Pony Individual Test CDIP during Dressage at Devon in 2018. The win is one of many on to Devine and Masterpiece’s ever growing record. To complete the top three pony placings, Miki Yang and Garden’s Sam rode to a 67.190%. ‘Sammy’, a 12-year-old New Forest Pony gelding owned by Four Winds Farm. Yang claimed a national title last year during competition when they were named as the 2018 USEF Children Dressage National Champion and she has been focused on developing the more difficult skills required in the Pony division. Earlier in her riding career, Yang was the youngest member of the U.S. Vaulting Team at the World Equestrian Games in Normandy, France. The young rider made the transition to dressage a few years ago and now also trains with Martin out of California. Earlier in the day, athletes between the ages of 16 and 25 were the first to ride down centerline in the Kay Arena, starting the day off with the continuation of the U25 Grand Prix division. In the Grand Prix 16-25 Test, worth 45% of their total score, it was Asher who claimed the blue ribbon with a score of 69.026% aboard Select Equine International’s 16-year-old KWPN gelding West Side. Asher was determined to improve from her 10th place performance on Tuesday as she knows the quality of performance West Side is capable of laying down in the show ring. Although the pair are fairly new to the international ring, Asher, of Denver, Colorado, and West Side have shared great success since making their debut, even taking individual gold in the 2019 FEI Nations Cup U25 Grand Prix at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival. Claire Manhard and her very own16-year-old KWPN mare Wilfonia took second in the Grand Prix 16-25 Test with a score of 67.564%, while Hope Cooper and Hot Chocolate W, a 14-year-old gelding owned by Mary Mansfield, captured third with a 67.103%. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Lucienne Bacon – FEI Pony Rider Team Test winner On her test: “I think through this year we have really been working on being a team in the arena and taking what we have from the warmup into the competition arena. To be able to go in and feel her with me and know that she is trusting what I am saying is incredible.” On Bonnaroo: “I have had her for two and a half years. She is a lot like me – we both have strong opinions about everything. She can be mare-ish and she tries to hide her affection sometimes but it is definitely there. I call her ‘Bonnie’ or ‘Bon Bon’ around the barn, she loves donuts so she gets a lot of those.” On learning from Bonnaroo: “I think having a horse that has so much experience means that you can really rely on them and I think because we really know each other I understand her the same way she understands me. We are a team and I can fall back on her just as much as she can fall back on me because I know she has been here and has had the experience.” Hannah Devine – FEI Pony Rider Team Test second place On her performance. “I thought the canter portion was really good. He’s usually better in the canter. Some things in the trot were not as good … he started trotting in the walk before I was supposed to. [I would like to get the] half-passes a little better and getting him a little more round [for the next test]. There is definitely always room to improve and other tests to compare it to but I think for tomorrow especially we are just going to go in and do the best we can with what we have in the warmup. I will try to not compare it to anything and just give it all we have.” On competing at the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions: “It’s fun that it is a bigger show, so it’s more important, which also makes it more stressful, but it is more fun when I do better because you’re competing against a lot more people. In smaller competitions there are not as many ponies [competing].” Lauren Asher – FEI Grand Prix 16-25 Test winner On her test: “The test went so much better today, it had a lot of highlights I think. My piaffe passage work I was super, super happy with. Yesterday [West Side] was looking a bit and was super spooky so I had some mistakes but to come back from that and have the ride that I had today, I am thrilled.” On the improvement from yesterday’s performance: “He is definitely a bit of a looky horse in general and he just flew from Holland where I am based so it was a long trip and then to come into a new ring, a new environment without doing many shows over the summer, I think he was a bit impressed by the atmosphere. Today I was like ‘Come on, you have got to do it’ and he was there for me which was wonderful.” On the Freestyle: “It is a really special freestyle that is meaningful to me so I am looking forward to it. It will be fun to show on Saturday.” Results: FEI Pony Rider Team Test Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Lucienne Bacon / Bonnaroo / Lucienne Bacon / 68.810 2. Hannah Devine / Masterpiece / Christina Devine / 67.476 3. Miki Yang / Garden’s Sam / Four Winds Farm / 67.190 4. Jordan Osborne / Geralja’s Tobias / Tiffany Ramsey / 67.048 5. Megan Tursi / My Blew Angel / Megan Tursi / 66.476 6. Olivia Patton / Daisy / Celestine Theriot / 66.381 Results: FEI Grand Prix 16-25 Test Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Lauren Asher / West Side / Select Equine International / 69.026 2. Claire Manhard / Wilfonia / Claire Manhard / 67.564 3. Hope Cooper / Hot Chocolate W / Mary Mansfield / 67.103 4. Anna Buffini / Wilton II / Anna Buffini / 66.590 5. Allison Gerlt / Sir Lommel / Jennifer Quirk / 65.846 6. Anna Weniger / Don Derrick / Dawn Weniger / 65.282
Nick Wagman and Don John Continue A Record Year Winning U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions' Grand Prix
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 22, 2019 – As one of the highlights of the competition, riders and their mounts cantered down centerline in the Kay Arena for the Grand Prix on the second day of competition at the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions. Leading the way by a solid four points was Nick Wagman and Don John, a pair that have shared an exciting journey leading up to the championships in Wayne, Illinois.
Wagman and Don John, the undeniable leaders of the Grand Prix, earned a score of 72.630% to claim the top spot in the class. The 11-year-old KWPN gelding owned by Beverly Gepfer has been under the care of Wagman since 2016, developing a close bond with him that rarely leaves room for any surprises in their test. As they enter the arena however, Don John caught Wagman off guard, strutting in with much more excitement than he had previously shown in the warm-up. Making up some points lost in the electric energy of the beginning moments, Wagman was overall pleased with the test, highlighting their piaffe-passage and transitions as some of their best to date. Together, Wagman and ‘DJ’ have had a record year leading up to the championships. Normally based out of Rancho Santa Fe, California, the duo traveled to the Netherlands earlier in the summer to compete in two Nations Cups for the U.S. Wagman described the experience as an honor, returning to the States with international experience and a new found confidence. Continuing on their high, Wagman and DJ were then asked to participate in the 2019 Pan American Games training camp as an alternate for the U.S. Dressage Team. Unfortunately, the gelding came down with a respiratory infection on his flight back home from Europe, forcing Wagman to decline the opportunity for the safety and concern of his horse. The decision was a difficult one to make but Wagman feels honored to have been offered the opportunity, though disappointed he could not step up for the team to replace Endel Ots when he had to withdraw Lucky Strike. Anna Marek followed in second place in the Grand Prix, earning a 68.63% from the judges after a clean performance on Diane Morrison’s Dee Clair. The 11-year-old mare has been a partner to Marek since she was three-years-old and Marek has developed ‘Clair’ through the ranks. With a 10-month-old son watching on, Marek was reminiscent of the days she used to spend at Lamplight Equestrian Center as a child. Riding the 16-year-old Danish Warmblood Millione to a score of 68.543% was Jennifer Schrader-Williams. Their test trailed Marek’s by less than .1 of a point, resulting in a third place finish for the Millione Partners, LLC gelding. Schrader-Williams has had the ride on Millione since 2017 and has competed him in CDI’s all over their homestate of California. The division for the USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Championship will continue Friday, Aug. 23 with the Grand Prix Special and the Grand Prix Freestyle will conclude the division Sunday, Sunday, Aug. 25. In the second phase of the USEF Intermediaire Dressage National Championship, Endel Ots continued his domination on Max Ots’ Lucky Strike, 73.853%. Ots piloted the 9-year-old Hannoverian gelding to their second win of the week with a 73.853% in the Intermediate I. Though the pair haven’t competed since February due to a bone bruise caused by a trailer accident, Rebecca Rigdon and her own 10-year-old Rheinlander mare La Fariah improved upon yesterday’s performance to finish the class in second on a score of 71.735%. Anna Marek and her own Einstein JP, an 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, rounded out the top three with a 71.088%. The champion of the division will be crowned on Saturday, Aug. 24 upon the conclusion of the Intermediate I Freestyle. For results and starting times, visit Foxvillage. Live streaming will be available on the USEF Network. Full competition schedule, click here. Results: Grand Prix Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Nick Wagman / Don John / Beverly Gepfer / 72.630 2. Anna Marek / Dee Clair / Diane Morrison / 68.630 3. Jennifer Schrader-Williams / Millione / Millione Partners, LLC / 68.543 4. Jim Koford / Adiah HP / Sherry Koella / 67.913 Results: Intermediate I Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Endel Ots / Lucky Strike / Max Ots / 73.853 2. Rebecca Rigdon / La Fariah / Rebecca Rigdon / 71.735 3. Anna Marek / Einstein JP / Anna Marek / 71.088 4. Katie Johnson / Paxton / Kylee Lourie / 70.824 5. Sara Hassler / Harmony’s Boitano / Leslie Malone / 69.088 6. Nicholia Clarke / Coral Reef Scoobidooh / Coral Reef Ranch / 68.941 FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Nick Wagman – FEI Grand Prix winner On his test: “When I went in the ring he surprised me because he was on fire and it caught me a little off guard, so the first part of our test was definitely not our normal start but he settled in nicely. Once we found our rhythm again it felt really nice and I could ride the way I wanted to so I was pleased. He really caught me off guard when I went around the outside of the ring. It was just not his typical reaction to the environment so it caught us both off guard and took us a few movement to get into the swing of things. Once we walked and were able to both take a deep breath I think the piaffe passage and transitions were some of our best to date. I haven’t seen the video yet but the pirouettes felt really nice, and my changes. I think the canter work was probably my strongest part of the test, but then I must say the piaffe passage was good too, so I think that is what ended up helping us recover from the shaky start.” On his year leading up to this: “We went to Europe and competed in two Nations Cups, which was just an honor to be a part of the team, and we did well and learned a tremendous amount being in new territory. That was really a good confidence builder for us. Then we came back and were named as an alternate for the Pan American games which was another big compliment. DJ got a respiratory infection on the way home from Europe so he didn’t have the greatest flight home and it took us a little while to recover from that, which was tricky with the Pan American games coming up and was the reason we opted not to go to the training camp. He was fine but I didn’t think it was fair to him to put him on a flight right after the one we had just been on. Hindsight is twenty-twenty, had we been there we could have filled in but at the last minute it was just impossible. The team still did great and it was exciting to watch everyone there. Now, we are here and trying to stay in the ring and improve and trying to get better and better. This is one of the shows that is like a European show in terms of the set up, the environment and the quality so I wanted to be here to keep it moving.” On being an alternate for the Pan Ams: “They asked me to be a part of the training camp, which is a week too, but he was just finishing his round of antibiotics and it made me worried to put him through the stress of a flight. I don’t think anybody anticipated Endel’s horse getting hurt on the trip to the airport, it was just so last minute and unfortunate circumstances. We did right by the horse because it would have been a lot of extra stress and pressure for him to travel that way. For the sake of the team, had we been there we might have been able to fill in but we did what we thought was best for the horse” Anna Marek – FEI Grand Prix second place On her test: “I have to say I was really excited to have a clean ride. With Clair, we always work on the piaffe-passage, trying to get it a little bit more in place, and getting through a clean test with a big canter. I was really happy with how everything went, she did everything I told her to.” On her partnership with Dee Clair: “I have known her and have been riding her since she was three years old. She is owned by Diane Morrison now, who bought her when she was four and then sent her back to me for training in her four and five year old year. I have kind of ridden her and shown her ever since she was five for Diane and we have gone up the levels with her and now we are here – with the help of my coach, Anne. It has been a really fun journey with her.” On being at Lamplight Equestrian Center: “This is my first year competing at the Festival of Champions. We qualified with her last year but I was pregnant. I love it here. I am actually from Michigan so when I was a kid I used to show here a lot doing regionals but I have never been here for [Festival of Champions] – I have been here for the young horse [championships] though.” On being a new mom and riding: “Thank god I have my husband and my mom because they let me hit the ground running. I rode for a very long time while I was pregnant. I really only took five weeks off and my mom has been helping me so that I can take him to the barn with me — she watches him and I train the horses then take him home. My mom, my husband and [my son] James, come to the shows with me so it is kind of like a family affair. My husband wasn’t [a horse person] but he is now! James is 10 months now and he loves the animals. When he comes I will set him on the horses and he will pet them – it is cool!” Endel Ots – Intermediate I winner On being at Lamplight Equestrian Center: “Being here is wonderful. I lived up here for almost a decade so I see a lot of old friends here in the Lamplight area. I have been showing here since I was 13 or 14 years old so it is really fun. My teammates form Pan Ams are here and I got a great picture of them watching the test. Sarah Lockman texted me that she wished she could make it but she is watching the live stream. It is really nice to have all of your friends and close colleagues around.” On his test: “With this test, it was a clean test and he was very with me today. I was really happy with his efforts and after the stuff that happened a couple of weeks ago we haven’t really been drilling tests but keeping everything very light so that he feels the best he can. That was a goal for all three days, to have clean nice rides. He did that yesterday and he did that today so I was very happy with him.” On Lucky Strike’s recent trailer accident: “The butt bar broke and he ended up losing his balance. He had superficial lacerations and two weeks of staying in the stall. We had to do some stitches, then some light walking, little bit of trotting, and putting small parts of the tests together. He knows his job so my thing was making sure he was healthy enough to come and compete up here so that we could make the trip and have a good time.” Rebecca Rigdon – Intermediate I second place On her test: “She felt really, really good. For not having done this since February, I was super happy with her. She got a little hot and started to percolate over a little bit but I was able to get her back down and then go on with the test so I was really happy. She is better in the I1 than the Prix St. Georges because it keeps her more busy and preoccupied. She is ready to do Grand Prix! She hasn’t shown since February due to a bone bruise after the first Pan Am qualifier. She had one pretty good test and one really good test and then loading onto the trailer she slipped and got a reverse bone bruise. It was 10 weeks of tack walking and then slowly back to work but by then the CDIs were over. I am unbelievably grateful to USEF for giving me the wild card to come.”
Ots, Manhard and Kadlubek Top Opening Day of U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions at Lamplight Equestrian Center
Wayne, Ill. - Aug. 21, 2019 - A senior division and two youth divisions of the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions held their first classes on Wednesday at the Lamplight Equestrian Center. Riders entered in the Prix St. Georges for the USEF Intermediaire Dressage National Championship opened the week's competition in the Kay Arena. Endel Ots rode away with the first win of the week on Lucky Strike in the Prix St. Georges while Claire Manhard on Wilfonia topped the Intermediate II for the USEF Young Adult 'Brentina Cup' Dressage National Championship and Kayla Kadlubek won the Young Rider Team Test for the USEF Young Rider Dressage National Championship.
Beginning with the Prix St. Georges test, which will count towards 40% of the USEF Intermediaire Dressage National Championship, riders will also complete the Intermediate I test to count towards 45% and the Intermediate I Freestyle to count towards 15%. Placings in the championship will be determined by overall averages of each test’s score. Endel Ots aboard Lucky Strike dominated the field, leading the division with a total score of 74.5%. Ots and Lucky Strike, a 9-year-old Hanoverian gelding owned by Max Ots, were recently set to compete for the U.S. Dressage team at the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru. However, following a minor injury during transport on their way to the Games, Ots withdrew Lucky Strike from the competition. Now recovered, Lucky Strike arrived at Lamplight Equestrian Center ready to showcase his talents and try for another national championship title. Last year, Ots and Lucky Strike clinched the 2018 Markel/USEF Developing Prix St. Georges Dressage National Championship, and the pair also won the Markel/USEF 6-Year-Old Young Horse Dressage National Championship in 2016. Continuing to move up the levels, they have improved the overall quality of their work and consistency in their tests to remain at the top of the leaderboard. Coming in second place was Sara Hassler and Harmony’s Boitano, a 13-year-old KWPN gelding owned by Leslie Malone. Although the pair has only competed together for about a year, Hassler was a groom for the gelding for years prior and has developed a strong bond with him that was only strengthened once she began riding him. She was excited by Harmony’s Boitano’s confidence in the Kay Arena, and particularly happy with his execution of the extended trot and half-passes in the Prix St. Georges test. Kristina Harrison and Finley, a 9-year-old KWPN gelding, rounded out the top three of the day with a total score of 70.324%. The Intermediate II for the USEF Young Adult ‘Brentina Cup’ Dressage National Championship followed the Prix St. Georges as the first leg of the U25 Grand Prix division, contributing to 40% of the riders’ overall scores. The athletes ranging in age from 16-25 will also compete in the U25 Grand Prix test worth 45% of the total score, and the U25 Grand Prix Freestyle worth 15% of the total score. Claire Manhard and Wilfonia led the charge with a score of 68.912% on the opening day of competition to take an early lead. Manhard and Wilfonia, her own 16-year-old KWPN mare, made the journey from Cardiff, California for the championships. Partners for nearly three years now, the pair have been through many transitions together, including a move to the east coast when Manhard attended Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts. Upon graduating in December of 2017 Manhard and Wilfonia moved back to San Diego where they began training with three time Olympian Guenter Seidel. Manhard feels that Seidel’s training has had a positive impact on Wilfonia and that despite her increasing age, she is only improving. Also under the training of Seidel was second place finisher Anna Buffini and Wilton 11. The 16-year-old KWPN gelding owned Buffini was claimed to be unrideable in 2017, forcing Buffini to give up her partnership with him. In a miraculous comeback, Wilton 11 and Buffini returned to the show ring a year later, crediting the geldings return to competition to the experiences she has acquired since making the decision to retire him and the help she has received from Seidel. A total score of 68.738% put Buffini and Wilton 11 right behind good friend and barnmate Manhard, a dream come true for the Californian training partners. Taking third place with a score of 68.706% was Kerrigan Gluch and Hampton Green Farm’s Vaquero HGF, a 12-year-old Andalusian stallion. The Young Rider Team Test for the USEF Young Rider Dressage National Championship wrapped up competition for the day in the Kay Arena, with the test contributing 50% of riders’ total scores. The Young Rider Individual Test held on Friday will also contribute 50% of riders’ total scores. Taking the class’ blue ribbon was Kayla Kadlubek and Perfect Step, an 18-year-old Hanoverian gelding. Kadlubek and her own Perfect Step topped the final class of the day with a score of 70.196%. Kadlubek is no stranger to the winner’s circle, as she recently earned a bronze medal in the Young Rider Individual Championship and silver medal in the Young Rider Freestyle Championship at the Adequan® FEI North American Youth Championships (NAYC) at Old Salem Farm in New York. She also helped Region 1 take home the gold medal in the Young Rider Team Championship just a few days prior. As a participant in the Discover Dressage™ USEF/USDF Emerging Athlete Program, Kadlubek traveled to Europe earlier in the summer to train and compete — a once in a lifetime opportunity offered to young riders to develop their skills as athletes and expose them to a different competitive atmosphere. Kadlubeck feels that gaining that experience has helped her step up her game in the arena and set her up for success. Coming in second place was Quinn Iverson and Black Diamond CL, a 13-year-old KWPN gelding owned by Bille Davidson. Iverson and Black Diamond CL, who only competed in their first CDI test in Wellington earlier this year, were awarded a 69.951% for their harmonious test. A working student of Olympians Debbie McDonald and Adrienne Lyle, Iverson has developed her skill rapidly since beginning her partnership with the gelding she calls ‘Coal’ in the barn. Bianca Schmidt and Lou Heart, a 15-year-old Hanoverian gelding owned by Eliana Schmidt, came in third place after being awarded a score of 68.676%. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Endel Ots – Prix St. Georges winner On being back at Lamplight Equestrian Center: “I love competing and [Lucky Strike] really likes competing so you know, I love Lamplight. I have been coming here for almost a decade and I have a lot of old memories and friends here. It is a wonderful thing for me to be back here. It is really fun to be here with [Lucky Strike] and to go through the young horse program, then go with Chrissy and Charlie through that and now, working for Charlotte Bredahl in the developing horse program – I love it! It has been wonderful.” On highlights of his test: “I think the trot work was a really good highlight and the canter pirouettes were really quite exceptional for him today. It was a nice feeling and I am really happy with my horse.” On the next test: “He had a little bit of time off after the Pan Ams so I haven’t been working on anything in full force or getting into the nitty gritty. I just wanted to come and do nice clean rides. I think we will just continue with that same process and plan. He was very good in the warm-up with a lot of energy, maybe a little too much at certain points. He is loving the cooler weather. I just want to have nice, clean, solid rides.” On strategy preparing after the Pan Ams: “After the Pan Ams I really wanted to make sure he was healthy enough to do it and my idea with Charlotte was to not drill a bunch of things. He is really fit, he knows his job and he knows how to do these tests so my idea was to keep things softer and more under control. I said, ‘Okay, lets just do a little bit of stuff everyday,’ and alternated three days working and two days off. I gave him three days off before we came up here and I just wanted to feel him out and make sure he was feeling the best he could. He knows how to do everything and there was not much more training I could have done. I wanted to have a feeling and know he was feeling his best going into the ring.” Sara Hassler – Prix St. Georges second place On her test today: “Honestly, we are a really new pair. We only started doing our first CDIs this year in Florida so this was by far our cleanest test yet and I feel like he was so with me – it was one of the best feelings I have ever had on him. I have never been here before so walking into that stadium was scary for both of us but having confidence and pride going into it made it really, really special. I loved every single second of it!” On her partnership with Harmony’s Boitano and here preparations for Festival of Champions: “I was his groom for a long time so we have a really good bond on the ground. I have been riding him for about a year and a half now – I rehabbed him and then brought him back so he is now my ride. We did our first show in Florida and we have been going consistently since then. Honestly, he is so talented and smart that he knows his job so the prep for this was all about our mental states to stay happy, confident and keeping him feeling like the special horse he is. I tell him he is so beautiful and he is like ‘Thank you! I know!’ and he deserves it! I am not the most confident rider so I know my trust in him, our connection and our bond is where our success comes from. He has everything, I just have to channel it. He is technically twelve still but this is his 13th year.” On Harmony’s Boitano’s best movements: “He loves his extended trot and he loves half pass. Whether we can put that in the ring is a big question but honestly, I think the sky is the limit for him because if you can tap into him the right way then he will do everything to the best of his ability – he gives 200% every time he goes in the ring so everything of his is my favorite!” Claire Manhard – Intermediate II winner On her test: “I think the connection, [Wilfonia’s] self-carriage and her energy was super today. She was collecting in all of the corners — she is usually super strong and powerful so I focused a lot on keeping her together, collecting and making sure she was balanced. This was definitely the best beginning to a test I have had. The piaffe-passage was really good. In today’s test we have a meter to go forward so I let the piaffe move a little bit while keeping her still active and moving really well behind. I think we got really good scores on that. The passage was super animated and lofty so that was great. She got a little hot as the test went on so I touched her and she hopped behind in one change in the twos. In the ones I got ten and then I relaxed then gave a little and she missed one but we will get them tomorrow!” On her partnership with Wilfonia: “I have had her since the very end of 2016. I rode her for a few months with Jane Karol in Boston when I was in college at Northeastern University. I learned a lot because I hadn’t really done anything before that as far as Young Riders or Junior Riders. Jane was really helpful in teaching me so much so fast. She then got a small injury so we were out for a little bit. Since then, I have graduated college, moved back to San Diego and have been training with Guenter [Seidel]. She has come a long way. Even though she is getting older she is still improving a lot. Her temperament is the best, she is the sweetest horse. She knows how to speak on command, she knows her left and right hoof, she knows kisses, she knows how to grab a sugar out of your lips, she is hilarious – I love her!” On her schedule: “I have a young horse that I ride that is 6-years-old and Wilfonia, so I take care of them from 7 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. then I have a job working from home. I am a consultant for a medical writing team at a biotin company so I edit and do QC writing. I am going to graduate school soon at University of California San Diego. Classes will be 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. so I will have the whole day to ride basically!’ Anna Buffini – Intermediate II second place On her test: “I was so pleased with [Wilton II]. Traveling all the way across the country and putting in a basically clean test with no mistakes in the first ride out was tough so I was really, really happy with him – I couldn’t have asked for more from him. Plus Claire Manhard, who is my training partner at home, trains with Guenter as well so we watch each other everyday and push each other. All year long we have told each other we don’t care who is one and who is two, as long as we can try and be one and two we will be happy, so this is a dream come true on top of all of this!”” On competing at the Lamplight Equestrian Center: “I dream about this place all the time! In 2017 he was actually retired because he became too dangerous and unrideable. He was in a field so to ride him at all, let alone be back here and get second at this beautiful venue, is incredible — it is the best comeback story I have ever been apart of. I am really proud of him. This is my last U25 year so it is bittersweet. Next year we are going to move up to the Grand Prix and see how he does there.” On her performance today versus her 2016 performance: “In 2016 he competed here in the U25. I know him much better now – I had to get to know him better because he is pretty much unrideable unless you know every single little quirk he has. I even have a better connection with this horse than I do Sunday Boy because in order to get him to do a Grand Prix test you have to know the ins and outs of him. Our connection is the strongest I have ever had with a horse.” Kayla Kadlubek – Young Rider Team Test winner On her test: “We put in a nice, clean test today which I was really happy about. The changes are hit or miss sometimes so I was really happy that I got them today and they were clean, uphill and nice. He was with me but I would have liked to add a little more power and energy to it but hopefully we are saving some for Friday so we can go out with a bang there. I am really happy with his performance today.” On continuing her success since NAYC: “I am feeling the pressure a little bit coming off of doing so well but it is a good learning experience. It is nice to know that it is there and that I can achieve those scores. I am going to keep striving for more.” On the comparison between last year and this year: “This is my fourth year competing at this national championship and my second year with this horse. I feel more comfortable and confident in myself, and going to Europe was a huge help with that because coming back here feels like we are back on our own territory and it is nice. The work feels more solid, I feel stronger, our partnership is a lot better and we are working more in harmony.” On competing at Lamplight Equestrian Center: “I love the grounds, it is so beautiful here. The footing is always really nice and everything looks picture perfect!” Quinn Iverson – Young Rider Team Test second place On her test: “I was so incredibly happy with [Coal]. He came out and he let me ride him, which is a big thing for us. With all of our traveling he came off the trailer and was ready to go. It took us both a second to get our feet underneath ourselves but once we were there, I was very happy with him. I was very happy with the canter tour and we have lots to work on for Friday. Overall, I was very happy with him. Looking toward our next test, I would like to improve the overall flow of the test and start the test with the same quality I ended the test today and being more prepared.” On competing at Lamplight Equestrian Center: “Lamplight is absolutely beautiful. This is my second time here because I actually came here as a groom with Adrienne [Lyle] when she brought Betsy Juliano’s mare Horizon. I got to see the whole competition and watch from afar and now two or three year later here I am doing the same thing for myself. It is really cool for me because it has been quite the journey with this horse – he is not the easiest guy but he is definitely worth it.” Results: Prix St. Georges for the USEF Intermediaire Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Endel Ots / Lucky Strike / Max Ots / 74.5 2. Sara Hassler / Harmony’s Boitano / Leslie Malone / 71.206 3. Kristina Harrison / Finley / Kristina Harrison / 70.324 4. Rebecca Rigdon / La Fariah / Rebecca Rigdon / 70.294 5. Kristina Harrison / Barnaby Wilde GCF / Kristina Harrison / 69.794 6. Anna Marek / Einstein JP / Anna Marek / 69.353 Results: Intermediate II for the USEF Young Adult ‘Brentina Cup’ Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Claire Manhard / Wilfonia / Claire Manhard / 68.912 2. Anna Buffini / Wilton 11 / Anna Buffini / 68.738 3. Kerrigan Gluch / Vaquero HGF / Hampton Green Farm / 68.706 4. Rachel Chowanec Kaney / Parsifal BRH / Rachel Chowanec Kaney / 68 5. Hope Cooper / Hot Chocolate W / Mary Mansfield / 67.824 6. Anna Weniger / Don Derrick / Dawn Weniger / 67.588 Results: Young Rider Team Test for the USEF Young Rider Dressage National Championship Rider / Horse / Owner / Total Score 1. Kayla Kadlubek / Perfect Step / Kayla Kadlubek / 70.196 2. Quinn Iverson / Black Diamond CL / Bille Davidson / 69.951 3. Bianca Schmidt / Lou Heart / Eliana Schmidt / 68.676 4. Katherine Mathews / Soliere / Peridot Equestrian LLC / 68.088 5. Jenna Upchurch / Venivici / Elizabeth Cronin / 66.716 6. Kaylee Christensen / Chateau 28 / Kaylee Christensen / 66.029
Exuberant Stallions, Talented Youngsters and Painted Ponies Parade at Second Jog Inspection of U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions and Markel/USEF Young and Developing Horse Dressage National Championships as All Go Clear
Wayne, Ill. - Aug. 21, 2019 - The second jog inspection of the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions and the Markel/USEF Young and Developing Horse Dressage National Championships followed the conclusion of the first day of competition at the Lamplight Equestrian Center. Seeing eager competitors of all ages ready to ride down centerline with their equine partners, all had to first pass the health inspection to be cleared for competition. All horses and riders presented passed and are now set to compete in the five divisions of the Markel/USEF Young and Developing Horse Dressage National Championships, the USEF Junior Rider Dressage National Championships, the USEF Pony Rider Dressage National Championships and the USEF Children Dressage National Championships.
Competition will continue on Thursday, Aug. 22, with the Grand Prix for the USEF Young Adult ‘Brentina Cup’ Dressage National Championship at 8 a.m. in the Kay Arena. Action in the Frey Arena will get underway at 8:15 a.m. with the Prix St. Georges test for the Markel/USEF Developing Grand Prix Horse Dressage National Championship.
All Horses Pass 2019 U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions Health Inspection With Flying Colors at Lamplight Equestrian Center
Wayne, Ill. - Aug. 20, 2019 - The first health inspection for the 2019 U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions took place Tuesday, Aug. 20 at Lamplight Equestrian Center with athletes from the Grand Prix, Intermediaire I, Young Adult 'Brentina Cup' and Young Rider championship divisions passing the jog with flying colors. In total, 160 competitors from 31 states and one U.S. territory are set to face off at one of the most prestigious national championships of the year beginning on Wednesday.
Allison Gerlt of Salem, Wisconsin, is set to compete in the Young Adult ‘Brentina Cup’ aboard Sir Lommel. The 23-year-old rider has been determined to return to the championships aboard Sir Lommel, a 12-year-old Hanoverian gelding owned by Jennifer Quirk and John Gerlt, ever since they qualified for last year’s U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions but withdrew from the competition. Although the timing in the previous year was not right for the pair, they have been focused on their development both in and out of the ring with the goal of returning to the Lamplight Equestrian Center better than ever. “I have lost 40 pounds since May of last year, so it has been an entire athletic and personal change for both him and I as a team, and for me as a developing athlete,” Gerlt said. “Patricia Becker, my coach, has been amazing throughout this entire process. To get ready for this has also been about improving our mental capacities for pressure. It has been an amazing journey.” When speaking about her goals for the national championships, Gerlt explained that she is looking forward to performing to the best of her ability with Sir Lommel and making the experience as positive as she can for both herself and her teammate. “I would like to get through every piece as a team together,” she continued. “I want to do the best I can and not go into it with any expectations because putting that pressure on yourself only creates a stressful environment that is unnecessary. I want to go in with a better mentality for the sport and just ride for me and him, not necessarily for anybody else.” “I love Lamplight, the show grounds are amazing,” Gerlt continued. “It is a big environment here, so it is good practice for him and for me. Getting to see the people that I get to compete with in Florida and seeing the other athletes is fun!” Competing in the USEF Young Rider Dressage National Championship, Quinn Iverson, 21, made the journey from Colorado with her mount Black Diamond CL. Coached by Olympians Debbie McDonald and Adrienne Lyle, Iverson has made significant leaps in her training since going down centerline in her first CDI competition earlier this season in Wellington, Florida. Iverson and Billie Davidson’s 13-year-old KWPN gelding have been partnered together for three years, when she began training as a working student with McDonald and Lyle at their farm in Idaho. “I was a jumper before this, so it is all still kind of new!” Iverson said. “It is absolutely incredible. I am so grateful for both [McDonald and Lyle] and everything they have done for me. Both of them are amazing trainers and I am very grateful for the opportunities and their support more than anything. I can’t thank them enough for putting the time into me. I am very blessed.” “For this show, I want a very rideable, honest horse in the ring,” she continued. “I want to be able to do what I know we can do together. If we can produce that and have clean tests all week, I will be very happy.” The first class of the championships, the FEI Prix St. Georges Test for the USEF Intermediaire I Dressage National Championship, is scheduled to begin at 8 a.m. in the Kay Arena. The FEI Intermediate II Test for the USEF Young Adult U25 ‘Brentina Cup’ Dressage National Championships and the FEI Young Rider Team Test for the USEF Young Rider Dressage National Championship will also take place on Wednesday. The jog inspection for the Markel/USEF Young and Developing Horse Dressage National Championships and the Junior, Pony, and Children divisions of the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions will take place in the Frey Arena beginning at 4:30 p.m. For results and starting times, visit Foxvillage. Live streaming will be available on the USEF Network.
Don't Miss It! Last Chance for Summer's End Horse Show Entries
2019 Summer's End Horse Show Fast Facts Events: 2019 Summer's End Horse Show What: The 2019 Summer's End Horse Show includes in August. The 2019 Summer's End Horse Show is a USEF National "A" and Jumper Level 2 rated show, and is approved by the Illinois Hunter Jumper Association (IHJA), the North American League (NAL) and the Washington International Horse Show (WIHS).
Where: Silverwood Farm 28426 98th St Camp Lake, WI 53109 When: Aug. 22-25, 2019 How: Mail Entries to: Jessica Battaglia 3101 Vermont Rd Woodstock, IL 60098 Email to: firstname.lastname@example.org Hours: 8 a.m.-5 p.m. daily Website: www.lamplightequestriancenter.com Management: Show manager: Dean Battaglia Show secretary: Mickey Cannon For stall reservations, feed & shavings orders, call Jess Battaglia at 815-245-0242 Media contact: Phelps Media Group, Inc. International 12012 South Shore Blvd. Suite 201 Wellington, FL 33414 561-753-3389 (phone) 561-753-3386 (fax) Email: email@example.com Website: www.phelpsmediagroup.com
Elizabeth Lang and Zephyr Close Out Equifest III with Win in $10,000 Hollowbrook Wealth Management SJHOF 1.40m Classic, Presented by Big Ass Fans
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 11, 2019 – The finale event of the 2019 Chicago Festival of the Horse took place in the Grand Prix Arena at the Lamplight Equestrian Center Sunday, August 11, in the form of the $10,000 Hollowbrook Wealth Management SJHOF 1.40m Classic, presented by Big Ass Fans. Spectators and exhibitors gathered in the stands, rallying together one last time to cheer on riders and their horses and celebrate the successful conclusion of Equifest 2019. Rising to the final occasion was Elizabeth Lang and Zephyr, who galloped to victory at lightning speed to claim the Classic title.
Setting the final course of the afternoon, Paul Jewell put forth a 13-obstacle first round track. Lynsey Whitacre and Barillo W were the first horse and rider combination to complete a faultless round in order to advance to the jump off. As the jump-off pathfinders, Whitacre and the 16-year-old Canadian Warmblood gelding completed the shortened track with just one rail down in 45.745 seconds. The pair’s lead was quickly taken over by Iasabella Bleu Baxter aboard Jahil, a 16-year-old Warmblood gelding, after they she forth a new leading time with a total of 4 faults in 41.033 seconds. The final pair to tackle Jewell’s course and contest for top honors was Lang and Zephyr. Earlier in the class, Lang rode to an 8-fault first round in a time of 78.312 seconds with her own Show Show. Entering the ring with a familiar feel of the course, Lang took to the Grand Prix Arena with the Zephyr, a 15-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, determined to take the win. Lang recently started riding Zephyr in March, and has been competing with the gelding in the High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers since April. Looking ahead, Lang hopes to qualify for either the Neue Schule/USEF Junior Jumper National Championships (Prix des States), the Washington International Horse Show (WIHS), or the National Horse Show (NHS) to finish out the 2019 show season. Lang and Zephyr completed a fault-free first round and headed into the jump-off with the hope of taking over the lead. The pair was quick off the ground and tight in their turns, and though they had a rail on course, their time was quick enough to nab the win, finishing less than one-tenth of a second faster than the leading time in 40.939 seconds. Bleu Baxter and Jahil would ultimately receive second place, with Whitacre and Barillo W rounding out the top three. The Lamplight Equestrian Center will next see horses and riders on the show grounds for the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions, USEF Young & Developing Horse Dressage National Championships and the USEF Dressage Seat Medal Finals. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Elizabeth Lang – $10,000 Hollow Brook Wealth Management SHJF Jr/AO/AM Jumper Classic, Presented by Big Ass Fans, winner On Zephyr: “I’ve been leasing him since March and I just moved up to Highs with him in April. He’s pretty new to me, but he’s really careful, really nice and big strided but adjustable, and he’s a dog on the ground! I love him, he’s amazing.” On the course: “I was in the Grand Prix last night and this course was very similar, so I knew where I needed to be careful. The eight-stride line gets steady on him because he does have a big stride, and I have to ride him well over the liverpools because sometimes he takes a peek.” On the jump-off: “In the jump-off I knew that [Isabella Bleu Baxter] sitting in first place was a fast 4-faulter. So I just kind of went for it! I liked it. It was fun because there were some nice turns, but there were also parts that you could gallop and let them go a bit.” On future plans with Zephyr: “I’m hoping I will qualify for Neue Schule/USEF Junior Jumper National Championships (Prix des States), the Washington International Horse Show (WIHS), or the National Horse Show, or all three, that would be amazing! After that my lease ends and I will miss him, but he’s such an amazing horse and I am lucky to ride him.” On competing at Lamplight: “I come to Lamplight every year and I love it here. It’s really pretty here with the trees, greenery and the flowers. Everyone here is so nice and helpful, it’s just a nice place. This is probably one of my favorite shows!” RESULTS $10,000 Hollow Brook Wealth Management SHJF Jr/AO/AM Jumper Classic, Presented by Big Ass Fans: Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults / Time / R2 Faults / Time 1. Zephyr / Elizabeth Lang / Wyndmont / 0 / 78.799 / 4 / 40.939 2. Jahil / Isabella Bleu Baxter / Isabella Bleu Baxter / 0 / 78.796 / 4 / 41.033 3. Barillo W / Lynsey Whitacre / Lynsey Whitacre / 0 / 80.071 / 4 / 45.745 4. Show Show / Elizabeth Lang / Alex Jayne / 8 / 78.312 5. Adico / Ashley Shaw / Ashley Shaw / 8 / 79.633 6. Diamond D / Natalie Jayne / Natalie Jayne / 26 / 94.145
Mary Antonini and The Governor Conclude Equifest III with Amateur-Owner 36 and Older 3’6’’ Hunter Championship
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 11, 2019 – Hunter competition at the Lamplight Equestrian Center concluded Sunday, August 11, for the third and final week of the Equifest show series. The Main Hunter Ring saw both amateur and junior competitors take to the arena to contend for their respective division championships. In the Amateur-Owner 36 and Older3’6’’ Hunter division, it was Mary Antonini that rode The Governor to the championship ribbon, while Marianne Pappas aboard Bocelli earned the reserve championship.
Throughout the two days of the division, Antonini and The Governor earned two first place ribbons and two second place ribbons over fences, as well as a second place under saddle. Antonini purchased the 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding from Hunter Holloway just over a year ago, and the pair have been competing in the Amateur-Owner Hunter division for nine months. In the future, Antonini hopes to one day compete with The Governor in hunter derby events. Pappas and Bocelli led the division after sweeping both over fences classes Saturday, August 10. Pappas and the 13-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding would ultimately return Sunday morning to receive the reserve champion tricolor after earning a second and third place over fences, and a third place under saddle during the day’s portion of the division. In the Amateur-Owner 3’3’’ Hunter division, it was Claire Elizabeth Patterson riding Fortune Favors that claimed championship honors. The pair earned a first, two seconds, and a sixth place ribbon over fences and a third place under saddle to claim the championship. Reserve champion in the Amateur-Owner 3’3’’ Hunter division was awarded to Olivia Lawton riding Atlodetto FZ to two firsts, a third, fourth and sixth place ribbon. Teddi Pritzker concluded junior hunter competition Sunday afternoon after nearly sweeping the Large 3’6” Junior Hunters to earn the championship in the division. The pair held their lead from Saturday’s portion of the division with two first place ribbons, riding to an additional two first place ribbons and a third place ribbon in the handy round to clinch top honors. The reserve champion ribbon was awarded to Taylor Holstead riding Roc’s All That. The Lamplight Equestrian Center will next see horses and riders on the show grounds for the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions, USEF Young & Developing Horse Dressage National Championships and the USEF Dressage Seat Medal Finals. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Mary Antonini – Amateur-Owner 3’6’’ Hunter 36 and Older champion On The Governor: “I have had him for about a year and a half. I bought him from Hunter Holloway – he was her derby horse. He was originally for my husband, [Larry Antonini], but he didn’t workout for him, so I got lucky enough to have him. I have been showing him for about nine months in this division.” On her rounds throughout the division: “Today they were much better. Over the last two weeks they were good – [The Governor] and I both have on and off days, like everyone. Today, he was quieter and in a happy mood! I have a tendency to go too slow in handy rounds and get too close to all the jumps. My goal was to stop slowing down. I rode jumpers for 35 years so I learned how to pull on the reins and now it is a bad habit. Holly [Shepherd] is trying to teach me how to let go and just move forward. My goal was to just keep going. ” On the Lamplight Equestrian Center: “I love this horse show. It is just the most beautiful showgrounds. We are from New Orleans and it is really hot there right now, but here I walk out of my hotel in the morning and I have to wear a jacket, which is amazing. I wish I didn’t have to go home!” On her plans moving forward: “I would like to continue to do this [with The Governor.] I would like to move into the derbies with him, but I need to get some more miles under my belt. I would love to do that because I know that he can do it. My horse High Society is going to derby finals, so I am going there to watch.”
Amanda Flint and VDL Wittinger Race to Win $25,000 Prix de Lamplight at Equifest III
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 10, 2019 – The final grand prix of the 2019 Chicago Festival of the horse took place Saturday, August 10, drawing the largest crowd of the weekend to the Grand Prix Arena. An elite group of 23 athletes and their horses competed for the last title of Equifest 2019, and ultimately it was Amanda Flint aboard VDL Wittinger that took top honors, with Tiffany Hammack and Crack Elle Chavannaise earning second place, while Liz Atkins and Rodeo VDL rounding out the top three.
In the first round, course designer Paul Jewell put together a 13-obstacle, 16 effort course that required precision and accuracy. In efforts to leave all of the rails up and remain within the time allowed, riders had to make split-second decisions that best allowed their horses to get over the 1.40m fences. The first clear round of the afternoon was produced early on by Stephen Foran and Cooper 152, owned by Alice Neild, securing them a spot in the jump-off. Seven other horse and rider combinations followed suit to welcome back a total of eight competitors to the jump-off. In the grand finale of the class, returning athletes made one final effort to ride tracks that did not alter the height or width of the eight obstacles set in the shortened jump-off course. First in the arena for the jump-off was Foran with the first of his two mounts, Cooper 152, a Holsteiner gelding. As the pathfinders for the class, the pair had an unfortunate rail down early in the course, setting the pace for the rest of the competitors at 48.705 seconds. Hammack and Crack Elle Chavannaise, owned by Beyaert Farm Inc., quickly took over the lead with a clear jump-off in a time of 45. 350 seconds. The pair held the lead until Flint took to the jump-of aboard her own VDL Wittinger. Flint and VDL Wittinger narrowly nabbed the leading spot in a faultless time of 45.011 seconds, just three-tenths of a second faster than Hammack. While competitors that followed would attempt to catch their time, the pair would ultimately hold the lead and earn first place honors. Flint and the 16-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding most recently won the $35,000 Osphos Grand Prix during the second week of the HITS Showplace summer show series in Chicago, Illinois. The Equifest show series marked Flint’s first time back at the Lamplight Equestrian Center after nine years, and she looks forward to hopefully making it a regular stop on her show calendar. Saturday afternoon’s grand prix was a family affair, as VDL Wittinger was the sire for the third-place mount, Rodeo VDL. Second place was ultimately awarded to Hammock and the 11-year-old Belgian Sporthorse mare for their quick and clear efforts. Rounding out the top three was Atkins and the 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding Rodeo VDL owned by Benchmark Stables LLC for their faultless time of 46.239 seconds. The final day of competition at the 2019 Chicago Festival of the Horse will take place on Sunday, August 10, with the $10,000 Hollow Brook Wealth Management SJHF Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic wrapping up jumper classes in the Grand Prix Arena. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Amanda Flint – $25,000 Prix De Lamplight winner On VDL Wittinger: “I’ve had him a few years, and every time I think I’m retiring him we win something! He’s a bit quirky, definitely has his own way of doing things and what he likes and doesn’t like. If he’s on and wants to win then he usually can.” On the first round: “For my first horse [Hudson VDL] it rode a little big because he’s only 7 years old, but for VDL Wittinger it was nice and easy. He goes to Kentucky next week, so we wanted to have a nice jump before that. I thought the course was well-built and good for the field we had today, I think he got the right number clean. On the jump-off: “Going into the jump-off, I thought I could do one less stride than [Tiffany Hammack] from the first to the second fence, and I realized I couldn’t. [VDL Wittinger] helped me out and was really good.” On showing at Lamplight: “I haven’t been here in nine years, but I grew up doing the short stirrup here. Hoping to come back next year!” RESULTS $25,000 Prix de Lamplight: Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults / Time / R2 Faults / Time 1. VDL Wittinger / Amanda Flint / Amanda Flint / 0 / 81.567 / 0 / 45.011 2. Crack Elle Chavannaise / Tiffany Hammack / Beyaert Farm Inc. / 0 / 77.769 / 0 / 45.350 3. Rodeo VDL / Liz Atkins / Benchmark Stables LLC / 0 / 78.961 / 0 / 46.239 4. Escada 289 / Taylor McMurtry / Taylor McMurtry / 0 / 79.737 / 0 / 49.242 5. Casisus 74 / Stephen Foran / Freedom Woods / 0 / 77.057 / 4 / 44.098 6. Chagrand / Michael Burnett / Michael Burnett / 0 / 76.615 / 4 / 47.717 7. Cooper 152 / Stephan Foran / Alice Neild / 0 / 80.815 / 4 / 48.705 8. Emma-Lee / Stefanie Collier / The C and C Group / 0 / 74.419 / 9 / 52.499 9. Ypsilon / Shannon Hicks / Helen Gilbert / 2 / 83.752 10. Clearwater 5 / Shannon Hicks / Helen Gilbert / 4 / 75.966 11. Zephyr / Elizabeth Lang / Elizabeth Lang / 4 / 76.481 12. Freaky Liefhebber / Jacqueline Steffens / Jacqueline Steffens / 4 / 78.022
Teddi Pritzker Tops Junior Hunter Competition with Willow CBF at Equifest III
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 10, 2019 – Junior and amateur competition was showcased Saturday afternoon during Equifest III at the Lamplight Equestrian Center. In the Junior 3’6’’ Hunter division, it was Teddi Pritzker that dominated the competition, taking the early lead riding Evergreen Stables LLC’s Willow CBF. The pair also rode to the win in the Junior Hunter Classic.
Pritzker, of Chicago, Illinois won both over fences rounds to take the lead in the Junior 3’6’’ Hunter division. Pritzker has been riding the 11-year-old Hanoverian mare for two years, and the pair has been climbing the ranks through the children’s and junior hunter divisions. The pair will return to the Main Hunter Ring on Sunday to contend for the championship title. Also in contention for the championship in the division is Ashley Shaw aboard Contemporary, owned by Amanda Shaw, as well as Taylor Holstead riding her own mount Roc’s All That. Both pairs earned a second and third place over fences Saturday afternoon to set themselves up in a strong position for Sunday’s portion of the division. Pritzker and Willow CBF rounded out their awards earning first place in the Junior Hunter Classic with an overall total score of 172. Finishing in second place was Holstead and Roc’s All That with an overall total score of 165, and rounding out the top three was Gabriella Lewis aboard Lex Toccino and riding to an overall score of 160. In the WIHS Equitation Hunter phase, it was Natalie Jayne and Atlodetto FZ that took the win. Jayne and the 13-year-old S.I. gelding earned a score of 87 to top the class. Jayne has been showing in both the hunter and jumper rings throughout the summer, and earned the championship in the Junior 3’6’’ Hunter division during Equifest II. Earlier in the day, the amateur hunter riders took center ring. Olivia Lawton and Atlodetto FZ took the lead in the Amateur-Owner 3’3’’ Hunter division after earning both first place ribbons over fences. Marianne Pappas rode to the lead in the Amateur-Owner 3’6’’ Hunter 36 and Older division aboard Bocelli sweeping both over fences classes. Competitors will return to the Main Hunter Ring Sunday, August 11 to contend for their respective championships. Hunter competition during Equifest III will conclude Sunday, August 11, beginning at 8 a.m. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Teddi Pritzker – Junior 3’6’’ Hunter leader & Junior Hunter Classic winner On Willow CBF: “She is my everything. She is the most giving horse – everyday she is always giving. I have had her for two years now, so we know each other pretty well. I have been doing the Junior 3’6” Hunters for four or five months now. She has brought me all the way from the Children’s Hunter division to here.” On her rounds: “They were really good! She won both trips and she was perfect today.” On showing at Lamplight Equestrian Center: “I have been coming here for three or four years now, and it is one of my favorite shows of the summer. My horses are always so good here and it is such a nice, relaxing facility.” On what is next for her: “Next I go to the Hamptons with all of the horses in a couple of weeks. We are excited!”
Ashley Shaw and Adico Achieve Success in High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 9, 2019 – While the $5,000 National Derby took place in the Main Hunter Arena, jumper competition got underway in the Grand Prix Arena at the Lamplight Equestrian Center. The picturesque backdrop of lush greenery and blue skies made for the perfect morning for some action-packed competition in the High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers. Topping the ranks of the Friday morning class was Ashley Shaw and her horse Adico.
Of the riders to take on the 10 obstacle course, only two were able to produce a clear round and advance to the jump-off, one of which was the final horse-and-athlete combination to enter the arena, Shaw and Adico. Moving into the jump-off, Shaw and Adico soared over the shortened course to a time of 43.352 seconds. With no competitors left to challenge their time, the pair were placed at the top of the leaderboard and awarded the blue ribbon. Adico, a 14-year-old Anglo European gelding, has been under the ownership of Shaw for two years now. Described by Shaw as a great teacher, Adico has brought the young rider through the ranks, reaching the 1.40m height in April. Shaw has plans of taking the gelding to the National Horse Show in the fall to round out her junior career before becoming an amateur. Previous to Shaw’s winning ride, Lynsey Whitacre and Barillo W tackled the course. Their clean ride in the first round made them the first pair to attempt the seven-obstacle jump-off course. Pioneering a clear track, Whitacre and the 16-year-old Canadian Warmblood gelding stopped the timers at 44.352 seconds to put them in second place at the end of the class. As the first to try their hand at the course, Jonathan Cohen and Lander put 4 faults on the scoreboard in their first round. Although they did not advance to the jump-off, their first round time of 67.493 seconds was the fastest of the 4-fault rounds, leading Cohen and the 8-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding to the third place position. Leading up to the High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers, the fences were set for the 1.35m Open Jumpers where Jacqueline Steffens rode Andrew Kocher’s Dyrusa H to double clear rounds and the fastest jump-off time to win the class. Racing through the timers after two clear rounds to take second place was Liz Atkins and Carletta, while Steffens also rode to third place with Carson Grisham’s Gap Van de Kai. Jumper competition will resume at the Lamplight Equestrian Center Saturday, August 9, with the $25,000 Grand Prix set to begin at 4 p.m. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Ashley Shaw – High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers winner On Adico: “I got Adico about two years ago and he has taken me from the Low Junio/AOs to the Highs, which we moved up to in April. I would say my favorite thing about him is how much heart he has. He loves to jump, he knows when it’s a jump-off and he is just a really good teammate, he is very forgiving.” On her rounds: “I liked the course. I thought it was a good Friday course with some flowing lines and it wasn’t too challenging. My goal was to have a nice clean first round and just to ride well. In the jump-off, I knew I didn’t need to run to win because Adico is a naturally fast horse and we were the last ones to go. I was just hoping to be efficient with my track and make sure that we were fast enough, but not any faster than it needed to be. It was a good round to set up the week.” On her plans for the future with Adico: “I age out at the end of this year, so my goal is to take him to Prix des States and ride for Zone 7 in the fall. I also would love to go to National Horse Show with him in Kentucky. I got to do Washington in the 1.30m jumpers last year and that was really fun, so I am hoping to at least to Harrisburg and then the National Horse Show in Kentucky this fall. ” On Lamplight Equestrian Center: “I have shown here since I was 13 years old. I did the Children’s Jumpers the first time I was here, so I love riding in the Grand Prix Ring. It is just such a pretty show facility and love getting to come back each year and getting to move up a division” RESULTS High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper results: Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults / R1 Time / R2 Faults / R2 Time 1. Adico / Ashley Shaw / Ashley Shaw / 0 / 69.339 / 0 / 43.585 2. Barillo W / Lynsey Whitacre / Lynsey Whitacre / 0 / 68.171 / 0 / 44.352 3. Lander / Jonathan Cohen / Jonathan Cohen / 4 / 67.493 / – / – 4. Diamond D / Natalie Jayne / Natalie Jayne / 4 / 68.041 / – / – 1.35m Open Jumper results: Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults / R1 Time / R2 Faults / R2 Time 1. Dyrusa H / Jacqueline Steffens / Andrew Kocher / 0 / 71.900 / 0 / 33.977 2. Carletta / Liz Atkins / Benchmark Stables LLC / 0 / 72.524 / 0 / 34.055 3. Gap Van de Kai / Jacqueline Steffens / Carson Grisham / 0 / 75.842 / 4 / 36.245 4. Catokio / Stephan Foran / Freedom Woods / 4 / 71.833 / – / – 5. Peter Pan / Alexandra Veleris / 4 / 73.606 / – / – 6. Furst / Rebecca Lannoye / Rebecca Lannoye / 4 / 74.540 / – / – 7. Calordo / Jacqueline Steffens / Bertrand Legriffon / 4 / 79.976 / – / –
Holly Shepherd Takes Top Three in $5,000 USHJA National HunterDerby at Equifest III
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 9, 2019 – The third day of Equifest III at the Lamplight Equestrian Center kicked off Friday, August 9. Hunter competition started strong with the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby. Out of a strong field of competitors that took to the Main Hutner Ring to contest for first place honors, it was ultimately Holly Shepherd that dominated the class to take the top three spots. Shepherd claimed first, second, and third place riding Star Jewel, Longstreet and As You Wish, respectively.
Shepherd led the first round with a total score of 92 aboard Star Jewel, a 9-year-old Oldenburg mare owned by EMO Stables. Following close behind Star Jewel, Shepherd sat in second place with Longstreet, owned by Barbara Risius. The pair earned a first round total score of 90. Shepherd sat in fourth place with As You Wish, owned by Ashley Runnels, after earning a total first round score of 86. During the handy round, Shepherd and Star Jewel showcased their skills, navigating the rollbacks, trot fence, and all four high options with ease to earn a score of 89.5. Though the pair did not receive the highest second round score, their first round lead was strong enough to hold the first place position with an overall score of 181.5. Following Equifest III, Shepherd and Star Jewel will travel to Lexington, Kentucky to compete at the Platinum Performance/USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Championship. Shepherd and Longstreet, a 13-year-old Dutch Thoroughbred gelding, earned a second round score of 91 and an overall total score of 181, just one half of a point behind Shepherd’s lead to earn second place. Shepherd has had the ride on Longstreet for four years, and their strong partnership was certainly showcased Friday morning. Shepherd and As You Wish, a 12-year-old Oldenburg gelding, earned an impressive second round score of 92 to move themselves up in the placings and ultimately receive third place with an overall total score of 178. Shepherd also rode As You Wish to a third place finish in the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby during Equifest I. Competition at Equifest III continues Saturday, August 10, beginning at 8 a.m. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Holly Shepherd – $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby Winner On Star Jewel: “She felt awesome today! She was really comfortable and she tried very hard. She had a light rub in the second round, but other than that she was amazing.” On Longstreet: “I’ve been riding him for four years, so we know each other well. He was super! He started out the class with a bang and he was also very nice to ride around the ring today. He can be a little squirrely sometimes, but today he was right on. He will be one of my [USHJA International Hunter Derby Championship] horses.” On As You Wish: “He recently came to Accolade Farm in March. He’s a Pre-Green 3’3’’ Hunter horse, and he has done a few of these hunter derbies and has been really good. He’s a blast to ride, the jumps just come up so good and he tried really hard today. I thought he went super!” RESULTS $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby results: Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Score / R2 Score / Total Score 1. Star Jewel / Holly Shepherd / EMO Stables / 92 / 89.5 / 181.5 2. Longstreet / Holly Shepherd / Barbara Risius / 90 / 91 / 181 3. As You Wish / Holly Shepherd / Ashley Runnels / 86 / 92 / 178 4. Hello Handsome / Teddi Pritzker / Evergreen Stables LLC / 88 / 89 / 177 5. Screen Shot / Ryan Sassmanshausen / Arkham Investments LLC / 85 / 88 / 173 6. Fortune Favors / Abigail Dvorak-Peat / Claire Elizabeth Patterson / 84 / 87 / 171 7. Sterling / Holly Shepherd / Sylvia Reitman / 69 / 85.5 / 154.5 8. Batchelor Party / Aerin Hopkins / Hannah Batchelor / 82 / 72 / 154 9. Sheldon Cooper / Kelsey Concklin / 79 / 71 / 150 10. Silver Lining / Ryan Sassmannshausen / Jessica Lowell / 70 / 79 / 149 11. Vincenzo / Grace Grove / Grace Grove / 46 / 90 / 136 12. Roc’s All That / Taylor Holstead / Taylor Holstead / 44 / 86 / 130
Taylor Flury and Calano Z Fly to $5,000 Open Welcome Grand Prix Win during Equifest III
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 8, 2019 – The third and final Welcome Grand Prix of the 2019 Chicago Festival of the Horse took place on Thursday, August 8, in the form of the $5,000 Open Welcome Grand Prix. Twenty-two competitors and their top mounts were given one final shot at claiming the Welcome Grand Prix title and the lion’s share of money. Making the most of the final opportunity to win the class was Taylor Flury and her very own Calano Z.
The 1.40m course designed by Paul Jewell, a sought-after “R” course designer in both hunters and jumpers, was comprised of 13 obstacles. Windy conditions and a complicated track were no match for the 8-year-old Zandersheide stallion and Flury, who showed no mercy through tight turns and open areas in the course, stepping on the gas every shot they had. A faultless ride in the first round and a time of 77.964 seconds meant that the pair would move straight onto the jump-off. Over the shortened course, Flury and Calano Z put in another clear ride and a time of 42.079 seconds thanks to their open gallop from fence four to five, which shaved seconds off of their time. Their need for speed set the tone for the remainder of the class, but was not to be beat. Calano Z is a breeding stallion that has been under the ownership of Flury since he was a foal. The handsome stallion’s record includes accomplishments such as qualifying for Lanaken World Championships for Young Horses, USEF National Horse of the Year in the 5-year-old Jumpers, champion of the 6-year-olds at the Winter Equestrian Festival and first place in the Tryon Welcome Stake in April. Coming in just over half a second after Flury was Michael Burnett and Chagrand, his 10-year-old Oldenburg. The gelding covered ground quickly throughout both courses, leaving all of the rails up as well. For a moment, it seemed that Burnett was going to beat Flury’s time, but as they landed from the final jump of the seven obstacle jump-off they stopped the timers at 42.719 seconds, sliding them into the second place position and leaving Flury on top. For Beyaert Farm, Tiffany Hammack rode Crack Elle Chavannaise to the third place ribbon. The 11-year-old Belgian Sporthorse mare jumped two clear rounds and tripped the timers at 43.858 seconds during the jump-off. On Wednesday, Hammack rode Crack Elle Chavannaise to second place in the 1.40m Open Jumpers. Jumper competition at the Chicago Festival of the Horse will resume on Friday, August 9, at 8:00 a.m. with the 1.20m Jumpers. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Taylor Flurry – $5,000 Open Welcome Grand Prix winner On Calano Z: “Both [Calano Z] and [Carrasca Z] are actually breeding stallions and I’ve owned both of them since they were foals. I’m the only one that has ever shown [Calano Z]. We just got back from Spruce Meadows and then he had a little break, so we came up here to get a nice couple of rounds in because we’re going to the Hamptons in a few weeks. I showed yesterday, but I felt a little rusty because I separated my shoulder last week.” On the first round: “[Calano Z] can get a little shifty off of the ground, so I wanted to be straight and carry a good rhythm because I have a tendency to pull. My goal was to be smooth, carry a good rhythm, try to be straight off of the ground and try to be a little more organized in my own riding. He was really good and followed the plan. He tried really hard today, so it’s always good when they try and help you.” On the jump-off: “With my first horse, [Carrasca Z], I added in two of the lines. He had a bit of a break and now he’s just coming back, so I wanted to be smooth. On [Calano Z] I felt like I was able to leave out the strides and go forward a little bit more. He walked the lines and I just tried to be smooth and tidy everywhere and it worked out!” On Lamplight Equestrian Center: “We haven’t been here in a few years just because it hasn’t worked in the schedule. This year I was home, and I tried to come last week, but with my shoulder I couldn’t, so we came this week instead! I live 45 minutes from here, so I grew up at Lamplight. I love Equifest – they always set good tracks so that you can get good practice. They understand that the jumps need to be built to size, it’s good footing, nice people and good management, so I think we will definitely be back next year!” On her plans for Calano Z and Carrasca Z moving forward: “These horses are both young, [Calano Z] is 8 years old and [Carrasca Z] is 9 years old, so my goal this year has been to try and keep getting smoother and keep moving up the ranks. They will both compete in the grand prix this Saturday and then I’m hoping we will be able to do the 1.45m division at the Hamptons.” RESULTS $5,000 Open Welcome Grand Prix: Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults / Time / R2 Faults / Time 1. Calano Z / Taylor Flury / Aliboo Farm, Inc. / 0 / 77.964 / 0 / 42.079 2. Chagrand / Michael Burnett / Michael Burnett / 0 / 78.506 / 0 / 42.719 3. Crack Elle Chavannaise / Tiffany Hammack / Beyaert Farm Inc. / 0 / 76.702 / 0 / 43.858 4. Carrasca Z / Taylor Flury / Aliboo Farm, Inc. / 0 / 76.331 / 0 / 44.339 5. Z Diamanti / Taylor McMurtry / Looking Back Farm / 0 / 76.794 / 0 / 45.426 6. Hudson VDL / Amanda Flint / Amanda Flint / 0 / 80.325 / 1 / 45.643 7. Anos Veros / Stellar Swarr / High Hopes Farm LLC / 0 / 78.002 / 4 / 43.390 8. Casisus 74 / Stephen Foran / Freedom Woods / 0 / 75.048 / 8 / 40.905 9. Jahil / Isabella Bleu Baxter / Isabella Bleu Baxter / 0 / 77.290 / 27 / 63.748 10. Escasa 289 / Taylor McMurtry / Taylor McMurtry / 3 / 84.424 / – / – 11. Al Pachini / Shannon Hicks / Helen Gilbert / 4 / 73.999 / – / – 12. Zarkava / Steve Schaefer / Steve Schaefer / 4 / 74.331 / – / –
Katherine Le Blanc and Player Close Out Performance 3’6’’ Hunters with Championship at Equifest III
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 8, 2019 – Thursday afternoon at the Lamplight Equestrian Center welcomed competitors back to the Main Hunter Ring to present champion and reserve championship honors in respective classes. In the Performance 3’6’’ Hunter division, it was Katherine LeBlanc and Player that closed out the day with the championship tricolor. The reserve championship ribbon for the division was awarded to Abigail Dvorak-Peat aboard Fortune Favors. Ashleen Lee and Honor received the championship tricolor in the Performance 3’3’’ Hunter division, with Laura Reist and Lord Mayor’s Bentley earning reserve championship honors.
LeBlanc and Player, a 15-year-old Westphalian gelding owned by Jeanne Pitre, finished Wednesday’s portion of the Performance 3’6’’ Hunter division with two first place ribbons, setting themselves up in the lead for Thursday’s portion. The pair nabbed a fifth and second over fences and a third place on the flat to clinch the championship tricolor Thursday afternoon. LeBlanc has had the ride on Player for two years after recently turning professional in 2017. Prior to that, Pitre and LeBlanc’s father brought Player along through the hunter ranks. Since then, LeBlanc has been competing with Player in the performance hunter divisions while Pitre competes with the gelding in the amateur hunters. Following Equifest III, LeBlanc and Pitre will head to Franklin, Tennessee to compete at the Brownland Farm Fall show series in September. Throughout the Performance 3’6’’ Hunter division, Dvorak-Peat and the 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding owned by Claire Elizabeth Patterson earned a first, two thirds, a fourth and a fifth place to claim reserve champion honors. Dvorak-Peat also took home the championship in the USHJA 3’0 Hunter, sponsored by Equine Healthcare, aboard Ravinia, owned by Raleigh Cerre. In the Performance 3’3’’ Hunter division, it was Ashleen Lee and her own mount Honor, an 11-year-old Warmblood gelding, that took home the championship. The pair earned three firsts and one second place over fences, as well as a third place under saddle, to ultimately receive the championship tricolor. The reserve champion was awarded to Laura Reist and Lord Mayor’s Bentley, an 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding owned by Mya Pinski. Over the course of the two days of competition, the pair earned a first, two seconds, a third and fourth place. Earlier in the day, Holly Shepherd dominated the green hunter divisions, earning the championship in both the Green 3’6’’ Hunter and Green 3’3’’ Hunter riding Star Jewel and As You Wish, respectively. LeBlanc rounded out her day of awards receiving the reserve championship in the Green 3’6’’ Hunter division riding MTM Amour. The reserve champion tricolor in the Green 3’3’’ Hunter was awarded to Kara Raposa aboard Independent. Junior and amateur hunter competition kicks off in the Main Hunter Ring Friday, August 9, beginning at 8 a.m. For more information about the Equifest show series or the Lamplight Equestrian Center, visit https://www.lamplightequestriancenter.com/ FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Katherine LeBlanc – Performance 3’6’’ Hunter Champion On Player: “He’s 15 years old and he’s owned by Jean Pitre, a client of ours. He’s done some International Hunter Derbies, and now he does the Performance 3’6’’ Hunter and the amateur hunter divisions with [Pitre]. I have only been riding him for two years, but she has owned him since he was 3 years old, and my dad and [Pitre] brought him along. I turned professional two years ago and started riding him then.” On the division: “I thought the rounds rode really well, everything here is like the old school hutners, quick in the turns. The jumps are really pretty, so it kind of holds them off a bit, and the ends of the ring come up quick. I’ve been really happy with [Player] these two weeks.” On competing at Lamplight: “This is our second year back and I actually grew up riding ponies here when we lived in Indiana, so it’s like come back home. The last two years we’ve really liked it; the weather is great and it’s beautiful. All of the horses seem to like it here, there are good restaurants in the area and good competition, so it’s always fun!”
Liz Atkins and Miracle Horse Rodeo VDL Top 1.40m Open Jumpers at Equifest III
Wayne, Ill. - Aug. 7, 2019 - The third and final week of the Chicago Festival of the Horse kicked-off on Wednesday, August 7, at the Lamplight Equestrian Center. While the Main Hunter Arena saw horses jump with style and grace at a relaxed pace, the Grand Prix Arena saw jumper riders race against the clock, slicing turns and putting in their best efforts to leave all of the jumps up. Rising to the occasion in the 1.40m Open Jumper class was Liz Atkins and Rodeo VDL, besting a field of 10 horses and athletes to win the class.
Equifest III course designer Paul Jewel set the 1.40m course featuring 11 obstacles. Multiple combinations, a liverpool and bending lines made up the challenging track that left many options on the table for riders to shave seconds off of their times. Taking the swiftest track aboard her 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding Rodeo VDL, Atkins put in two clear rounds. Rodeo VDL, who is often referred to as a miracle horse after beating a rare form of cancer as an 8-year-old, put in a jump-off time of 39.368 seconds over the shortened 7 obstacle course. Last year, Atkins and Rodeo won the $25,000 Grand Prix during Equifest III. This year, Atkins felt some inconsistencies in their courses during Equifest I and II, thus making the decision to take their class load down a notch to the 1.40m Open Jumpers, where she felt they could put in a solid, steady ride. Rodeo VDL, however, went in to give the first jump his all, giving Atkins the green light to go for the blue ribbon. Following behind Atkins, Tiffany Hammack rode Beyaert Farm’s Crack Elle Chavannaise to double-clear rounds. Less than half a second behind the winning time, Hammack and the 11-year-old Belgian Sporthorse mare secured second place with a jump-off time of 39.699 seconds. In addition to her win, Atkins returned to the arena to round out the top three in the class with her 13-year-old Holsteiner mare Carletta. Another double-clear ride and a time of 39.955 seconds put her in the third place position. Prior to the 1.40m Open Jumper class, Jacqueline Steffens rode Andrew Kocher’s Dyrusa H, an 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood mare, to two fault-free rounds and the top of the leaderboard in the 1.30m Open Jumpers. Earning second place in the class was Mark Mc Kone and Fearless, his 9-year-old Dutch Warmblood stallion, while Taylor Flurry and Nefreteri came in third place. Competition in the Grand Prix Arena will resume on Thursday, August 8, with the Training 1.15m Jumpers and 5-Year-Old Jumpers. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Liz Atkins – 1.40m Open Jumper winner On Rodeo VDL: “That horse is actually amazing. I’ve had him for a few years and we pretty much saved his life from terminal cancer as an 8-9 year old. Ever since we’ve gotten him healthy he’s been a superstar. He is a super trier, he really goes in the ring and tries to win for you every single time.” On the course: “I was really happy with [Rodeo VDL] today, he jumped a great round. We had a little bit of an inconsistent two weeks the last two weeks here so I went in today and thought, ‘I’m just going to jump a good, clean 1.40m,’ and honestly, as soon as I jumped the first jump in the first round he felt awesome. I decided I would try to win since he felt so good!” On Lamplight: “We’ve been here for the past two weeks and we come here every single year. We’re from this area and my farm is 25 minutes from here, so this is really home for us. I grew up showing at Lamplight since I was 13 years old. We do not miss this horse show ever!” RESULTS 1.40m Open Jumpers: Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults / Time / R2 Faults / Time 1. Rodeo VDL / Liz Atkins / Benchmark Stables LLC / 0 / 66.476 / 0 / 39.368 2. Crack Elle Chavannaise / Tiffany Hammack / Beyaert Farm Inc. / 0 / 63.465 / 0 / 39.699 3. Carletta / Liz Atkins / Benchmark Stables LLC / 0 / 62.698 / 0 / 39.955 4. Hudson VDL / Amanda Flint / Amanda Flint / 0 / 66.022 / 0 / 41.199 5. Z Diamanti / Taylor McMurtry / Looking Back Farm / 0 / 69.778 / 0 / 43.375 6. Barillo W / Lynsey Whitacre / Lynsey Whitacre / 0 / 65.833 / 4 / 39.982 7. Von Casius / Tony Font / Deana Blackburn / 4 / 65.130 / – / – 8. Gap Van de Kai / Jacqueline Steffens / Carson Grisham / 8 / 68.231 / – / – 9. Calordo / Jacqueline Steffens / Bertrand Legriffon / 8 / 69.251 / – / – 10. Peter Pan / Alexandra Veleris / Third Coast Equestrian LLC / 12 / 69.676 / – / – 1.30m Open Jumpers: Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults / Time / R2 Faults / Time 1. Dyrusa H / Jacqueline Steffens / Andrew Kocher / 0 / 65.628 / 0 / 37.312 2. Fearless / Mark McKone / Mark Mc Kone / 0 / 64.480 / 0 / 39.562 3. Nefreteri / Taylor Flurry / – / 0 / 66.789 / 0 / 40.290 4. Furst / Rebecca Lannoye / Rebecca Lannoye / 0 / 66.724 / 0 / 41.163 5. Carrasca Z / Taylor Flurry / Aliboo Farm, Inc. / 0 / 64.920 / 4 / 41.330 6. Darco’s Lynx / Laura Roesing / Laura Roesing / 0 / 65.429 / 4 / 43.898 7. Irvington VDL / Amanda Flint / Amanda Flint / 4 / 63.885 / – / –
Holly Shepherd and Star Jewel Lead Green 3'6"/3'9" Hunter Division at Equifest III
The third and final week of the Equifest show series at the Lamplight Equestrian Center kicked off Wednesday, August 7. Hunter competition showcased the professional hunter divisions in the Main Hunter Ring. Holly Shepherd took an early lead in the Green 3'6'/'3'9'' Hunter division with Star Jewel, and she also leads the Green 3'3'' Hunters riding As You Wish.
Shepherd and Star Jewel swept the first three classes of the division to take the lead, including two over fences rounds and the under saddle. Following just behind Shepherd, Katherine Le Blanc rode MTM Amour, owned by Jeanne Pitre, to three second place ribbons. Both Shepherd and Le Blanc will return to the Main Hunter Ring Thursday morning to contend for the champion and reserve champion honors in the Green 3’6’’/3’9’’ Hunter. During Equifest II, Shepherd and the 9-year-old Oldenburg mare earned the reserve championship tricolor in both the Green 3’6’’ Hunter division as well as the $1,000 USHJA Green 3’6’’ & 3’9’’ Hunter Incentive. Following Equifest III, Shepherd and Star Jewel will travel to Lexington, Kentucky to compete at the Platinum Performance/USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Championship. In the Green 3’3’’ Hunter division, Shepherd took another early lead riding As You Wish, a 12-year-old Oldenburg gelding owned by Ashley Runnels. The pair earned first and second place over fences and a first place under saddle to put themselves in top contention for Thursday’s championship presentation. Maggie Jayne followed close behind Shepherd’s lead riding Michigan ODF, owned by Leslie Coolidge. Jayne and the 6-year-old American Warmblood earned first, second, and third during the first portion of the division. Hunter competition at Equifest III will continue Thursday, August 8, beginning at 8 a.m. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Holly Shepherd – Green 3’6”/3’9” Hunter division leader On Star Jewel: “This is my fourth time showing her. I started her at Tryon a couple of years ago as a Pre-Green horse, so I am excited to get back on her. She gets to go to the [Platinum Performance/USHJA Green Hunter Incentive Championship] next week, so this is our last practice before then.” On her rounds: “She is a real trier. We got to warm-up this week, so in that round she was still a little bright, but both of her rounds over fences were really good. The second one was pretty special – I think I probably would have given her a 92!” On her goals with Star Jewel moving forward: “She is for sale, so hopefully she will find a new home. Otherwise, maybe we will aim for the [USHJA International Hunter Derby Championship] with her next year – you never know!”
Lauren DiTallo and Apollo Z End Equifest II on a Fast Note with $20,000 Speed Derby Win
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 4, 2019 – To wrap up events in the Grand Prix Arena during the second week of the Chicago Festival of the Horse, the $20,000 Speed Derby took place to give riders one last chance to take home ribbons from the week of competition. Proving their affinity for speed, Lauren DiTallo aboard Apollo Z were named the victors following a lightning fast round.
Capping off the wonderful week of jumper competition at Lamplight Equestrian Center, course designer Leopoldo Palacias left riders with one final challenge for the speed class. A long 16-obstacle course was all that stood between riders and the winners circle if they could navigate it in the quickest time. The faults-converted format of the class also encouraged the athletes to be as careful as possible while keeping up the pace around the lengthy course. Several rollbacks and a trip over the bank at the head of the arena were just a couple of the course’s challenges. Louise Graves and Wicked were the first pair to take a stab at the course, successfully completing a clear course in 115.657 seconds. Ashley Miles and her own Kartouche Van De Brouwershoeve were the next to ride a flawless round after several riders had rails down, taking over the first place position with a time of 100.83 seconds. Miles and Kartouche Van De Brouwershoeve remained unchallenged at the top of the leaderboard until DiTallo entered the arena with Apollo Z, an 8-year-old gelding owned by Scott Durchslag. With Miles’ fast time in mind, DiTallo piloted Apollo Z around the arena carefully, pushing for speed when she could to cross the finish line in just 99.671 seconds, taking over the lead. Near the end of the order of go, Shannon Hicks made an attempt for the top prize with her second mount of the class, Al Pachini, owned by Helen Gilbert. The combination put in a good effort with just one rail down, but missed DiTallo’s time, finishing in 100.554 seconds to move into second place. The remaining riders was not able to challenge the top three, and DiTallo was announced as the clear winner. Hicks took home the second place prize with Al Pachini and Miles finished in third place with Kartouche Van De Brouwershoeve. Competition at the Chicago Festival of the Horse will resume on Wednesday, Aug. 7, at 8 a.m. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Lauren DiTallo – $20,000 Speed Derby Winner On her success this week: “We had two in the Grand Prix yesterday and Zero Gravity finished third. It was his second 1.50m class, he did the Welcome Grand Prix in the beginning of the week and he was phenomenal, I couldn’t have asked more of the horse. It was a great effort, so it was a good week for us.” On Apollo Z: “He is new to the stable. Scott Durchslag, his owner, has a wonderful string with us this year, it is our first year campaigning. We imported him maybe a few months ago. He jumped in Saratoga his first 1.40m class with us, and we just took him to Michigan for a few weeks. He’s been great, very competitive at the 1.30m level. Not really the speed horse in the string but we wanted to have a horse in the class and he tried very hard. Very sweet horse, it’s an exciting partnership. I’m looking forward to the future with him.” On her strategy for the Speed Derby: “It’s a long course and it’s the end of a long month of horse showing for us, so I knew the fitness for my horse was going to play a part in the heat today. I knew that if I wanted to be competitive I needed to hold a nice pace from the beginning and be as effective on the turns as I could be. I tried to pick places that made sense for me to go inside and places for me to gallop between the fences. He’s never seen a hunter fence before so there were a few things in there I was questioning might bring out the spook in him, but honestly he was phenomenal.” On Lamplight Equestrian Center: “We are actually from the area, the farm is in Northern Illinois. We typically come for Equifest every summer. We try to make it because it is so close to home for us, it’s a big family event. We like to bring everyone together from the farm at home here is the closest horse show for them to come spectate at. We did some fun barbecues both weekends which was nice, it was nice to bring everybody together. We love when it is a big family atmosphere and everyone supports one another. That’s what I enjoy about his horse show, it has this good hometown energy.” RESULTS $20,000 Speed Derby Place / Rider / Horse / Owner / R1 Faults / R1 Time 1. Lauren DiTallo / Apollo Z / Scott Durchslag / 0 / 99.671 2. Shannon Hicks / Al Pachini / Helen Gilbert / 4 / 100.554 3. Ashley Miles / Kartouche Van De Brouwershoeve / Ashley Miles / 0 / 100.83 4. Shannon Hicks / Clearwater 5 / Helen Gilbert / 4 / 102.478 5. Louise Graves / Zavira / Deerfield Farm LLC / 0 / 103.073 6. Ryan Sassmannshausen / Babar / Maeve O’Sullivan / 8 / 105.069 7. Stephen Foran / Cooper 152 / Alice Neild / 4 / 105.912 8. Ashley Shaw / Adico / Ashley Shaw / 4 / 109.185 9. Theo Genn / For Advance / Wilhelm Genn / 8 / 109.699 10. Isabella Bleu Baxter / Jahil / Isabella Bleu Baxter / 4 / 114.011 11. Stephen Foran / Compis / Lauren Robishaw / 12 / 114.569 12. Louise Graves / Wicked / Deerfield Farm LLC / 0 / 115.657
Kelley Farmer Returns to Equifest to Win It All in $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 4, 2019 – The final day of World Championship Hunter Rider (WCHR) week at Lamplight Equestrian Center began on Sunday morning, set in the picturesque Grand Prix Arena. As the sun rose through the trees, championship horses and riders gathered in the schooling arena to make their final preparations for the day full of highlight events. In the highly anticipated $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, Kelley Farmer and Consent took to the arena, showing judges and spectators why they deserve to be on top. The elite hunter rider and horse went on to claim the coveted winning title, the lion’s share of money along with Equi+Calm Equine Calming Supplements and Pomms premium earplugs gifted by Equine Healthcare International.
Farmer, a well-known and very successful hunter rider, is no stranger to derbies, leading the USHJA International Hunter Derby Lifetime Standing for Rider Money Won with an incredible $1,680,984 to her name. Her partner for the Sunday morning event was Consent, a 7-year-old Westphalian gelding owned by David Glefke and Kent Farrington LLC. The eye-catching gelding is known for his impressive jump, often propelling himself above the standards while simultaneously making the courses look effortless. Two panels of judges watched on as the pair rode to impeccable distances that showcased Consent’s scope during the first round. Scoring a total first round score of 191 with four high option fences, Farmer established herself as the leader of the class by 15 points. Coming into the handy round last, spectators stood, watching with anticipation as Farmer and Consent picked up their canter to take a direct approach to the first vertical in course designer Paul Jewel’s handy course. Farmer navigated a seamless ride through rollback turns and a trot jump, taking all four high option jumps to score a 197. Upon exiting the ring, Farmer smiled and patted Consent, knowing that their trip was more than enough to take home the win. Seconds later their overall score of 388 was announced, putting them at the top of the 14 horse order by 23 points to claiming the $15,000 International Hunter Derby title once again. Receiving the reserve honors in the competitive class was Jennifer Alfano and David Glefke’s Untouched. The 7-year-old Holsteiner mare put out her best effort as a catch ride for Alfano. Judges awarded the mare a 173.5 in the first round. Originally not in the top three of the competitive field of horses, Alfano and Untouched laid it all on the line in the handy, coming back with a score of 191.5 to give them a total of 365 and give them the leg-up needed to take second place. Last year’s winners of the $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, Dorothy Douglas and MTM Exceptional, jumped to the third place position in the class. MTM Exceptional is a 10-year-old Holsteiner owned by Abigail Davenport. The gelding received a first round score of 166.5, improving in the handy to score a 198. Their overall score was 364.5, missing the second place position by a mere half of a point. Prior to the $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, the $5,000 USHJA National Derby took place. An extremely competitive field of 44 horses was bested by Alfano and the 7-year-old Warmblood Kindred. Kathy Chiaf owns the gelding who was given scores of 184 and 177.5 to a total 361.5. Earlier in the week, Alfano and Kindred were named champions of the Green 3’6” Hunter division at Equifest II. In addition to Alfano’s first place finish, she also clinched the second place ribbon with her 6-year-old Holsteiner mare Page One. Although Page One is fairly new to the hunter arena, she showed a great understanding for her job, scoring consistently in both rounds with a 181 and 180. Alfano’s final score aboard the mare, 361, was only half of a point from her more well-seasoned partner, Kindred. Following closely behind Alfano was Savannah Talcott with Ellen Muslin’s Eileen. Scores of 163.75 and 179 were presented to the 12-year-old Hanoverian mare, resulting in a final score of 342.75 for the yellow ribbon. This was Talcott and Eileen’s first International Hunter Derby together, making their debut a successful one with a top-three finish. Competition at the Lamplight Equestrian Center will continue on Wednesday, August 7, with the start of Equifest III. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Kelley Farmer – $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby winner “He was great in the first round and he felt great today. He always tries really, really hard and he always gives me 110%, so he is a lot of fun to ride. I was far enough ahead [going into the handy round] that I just didn’t want to make a stupid mistake. He is not going to do anything to let me down so I needed to not do anything to let him down.” Jennifer Alfano – $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby winner On Kindred: “Kindred is 7 years old and he does the Green 3’6” Hunter division. I have had him through his pre-green year so I know him really well. I wanted to stay this week because he will do Incentive Finals in Kentucky next week and this is good practice since it goes in the Walnut ring there. ” On Page One: “Page One is also doing Incentive Finals next week. She is new to me, I just got her this spring, so I am just getting to know her. She is learning to be a hunter. She did low level jumpers before.” On her rounds: “Kindred was great. He has a lot of miles and is well seasoned, so I was really happy with him. In the handy, I did the same track as I did on all of the other ones. I didn’t try to do anything crazy because he was far enough ahead so I just wanted to have a nice round.” On Lamplight Equestrian Center: “We come to Lamplight every year. I love this show, it is one of our favorite shows. I love the venue, the people all treat us so nice, we love coming here.” On her plans for Kindred in the future: “We will just keep going! He has plenty of scope to keep going and do some bigger stuff in the future. I think his owner is going to start riding him a bit so that will be fun.” RESULTS $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby results: Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Score / R2 Score / Total Score 1. Consent / Kelley Farmer / Glefke & Kent Farrington LLC / 191 / 197 / 388 2. Untouched / Jennifer Alfano / David Glefke / 173.5 / 191.5 / 365 3. MTM Exceptional / Dorothy Douglas / Abigail Davenport / 166.5 / 198 / 364.5 4. Enchanted / Kelley Farmer / Christel Weller / 176 / 186 / 362 5. S & L Lion King / Dorothy Douglas / S & L Farms / 173.5 / 185 / 359 6. Flamboyant / Holly Shepherd / Debbie Holland / 153 / 181 / 334 7. Poetic / Ryan Sassmannshausen / Melissa Williams / 167 / 166 / 333 8. As Quoted / Kelley Farmer / David Glefke / 183 / 148 / 331 9. Anthemis Z / Jordan Lubow / Jordan Lubow / 157 / 171 / 328 10. Ollivander / Callie Rheinheimer / Wind Haven Farm / 154 / 154 / 308 11. MTM Amour / Katherine Le Blanc / Jeanne Pitre / 150 / 157 / 307 12. Midas / Holly Shepherd / Margret Camp / 143 / 64 / 207 $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby results: Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Score / R2 Score / Total Score 1. Kindred / Jennifer Alfano / Kathy Chiaf / 184 / 177.5 / 361.5 2. Page One / Jennifer Alfano / Jennifer Alfano / 181 / 180 / 361 3. Eileen / Savannah Talcott / Ellen Muslin / 163.75 / 179 / 342.75 4. Contemporary / Ashley Shaw / Amanda Shaw / 169 / 169 / 338 5. Honor / Ashleen Lee / Ashleen Lee / 176.5 / 159.5 / 336 6. Roc’s All That / Taylor Holstead / Taylor Holstead / 169 / 165.5 / 334.5 7. Obora’s Andre / Madeline Ryan / Madeline Ryan / 162 / 171.5 / 333.5 8. MVP / Elizabeth Kniser / Elizabeth Kniser / 162 / 166 / 328 9. No Doubt / Theodora Goffstein / Shannon Hicks / 162 / 155 / 317 10. My BFF / Erin Cummins / Erin Cummins / 166 / 148 / 314 11. At Last / Elizabeth Nestor / Claire Azar / 174 / 133 / 307 12. Silver Lining / Jennifer Alfano / Kathy Chiaf / 175.5 / 108 / 283.50
Tracy Fenney and MTM Apple Claim Second Consecutive Win in $50,000 Buck Brothers John Deere Grand Prix
Wayne, Ill. - Aug. 3, 2019 - The highlight event of Equifest II, the $50,000 Buck Brothers John Deere Grand Prix, began on Saturday evening at Lamplight Equestrian Center with a field of 33 world-class competitors joining together to battle it out for the top honors of the class. Following an all-out effort in the jump-off, it was Tracy Fenney and MTM Apple who came out on top to take home the victory for the weekend.
Leopoldo Palacias continued to construct unique and challenging courses for the jumper riders throughout the week, and Saturday’s Grand Prix event was no exception. Featuring three combinations, the 13-obstacle course asked riders to draw upon their technical skills in order to advance to the second round. Obstacle five, a combination with two airy birch log jumps set only two strides apart, was the cause of difficulty for several riders on the course. As athletes approached the final fences, a triple bar to an in-and-out combination required riders to reorganize themselves with just four strides in between. Fenney had four opportunities to add her name to the jump-off list, with MTM Reve Du Paradis being her first mount to navigate the course clear. She then rode MTM Apple, an 8-year-old Danish Warmblood mare, back into the Grand Prix Arena for the first time since their victory in the $25,000 Purina Welcome Grand Prix just two days prior. Riding a clear round once again, she had her sights set on adding another top placing to her resume. Others like Lauren Ditallo riding Zero Gravity and Ryan Michael Genn aboard Colora also rode smooth rounds to continue on. At the conclusion of the first round, ten combinations were poised to return for the jump-off. The jump-off course, comprised of eight obstacles, required riders to be careful through two different combinations while pushing for speed to claim the fastest time. Fenney rode MTM Reve Du Paradis first in the jump-off, riding well but unfortunately knocking one rail. Genn and his brother, Theo Genn, were quick in their jump-off rounds but also ended with 4 faults. Fenney and MTM Apple then returned, careful to leave up all the rails while being handy around the course. In a successful and clean effort, the pair crossed the finish line in 36.606 seconds to move into first place. Ditallo and Zero Gravity, a 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, also rode a clear jump-off, but were not able to surpass Fenney’s time with MTM Apple. It was not until Fenney rode her final mount Igor Van De Heibos, an 11-year-old Belgian Warmblood stallion, that her own time was challenged. The pair completed their jump-off round in just 36.917 seconds to move into the second position. As the remaining rider knocked a pair of rails, Fenney was named the clear victor with MTM Apple. Fenney also took home the second place prize with Igor Van De Heibos to end Equifest II on a high note with her jumpers. Ditallo and Zero Gravity rounded out the top three with their fast and clean jump-off effort. Jumper competition at the 2019 Chicago Festival of the Horse will resume on Sunday, with the $20,000 Speed Derby following the $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Tracy Fenney – $50,000 Buck Brothers John Deere Grand Prix winner On winning back-to-back Grand Prixs: “Apple is just such a fun horse and such a trier. She just wants to please and wants you to be happy with her. She is so open-minded and like a brand new book, which makes it really exciting. There are no ghosts in the closet – she is really willing to go do whatever we want her to do.” On her preparations in between Grand Prixs: “Mike [McCormick] rode her yesterday. His horse went to Kentucky, so he just hacked her and enjoyed riding her.” On her rounds: “The first round was pretty technical. The jumps were at her comfort level for right now to where she wouldn’t get scared. I think this has been a great two weeks for her to build up and get a lot of exposure, gain experience and do some fun jump-offs.” On where she travels to next: “We go to Kentucky next to do the Green Hunter Incentive Championships so all of our green horses left yesterday. We had a fabulous week in the hunters, they were all super fun. Most of the other horses will leave tomorrow and then we have a final load going on Monday. We have a few going in the derby tomorrow, but I am done for the week. Now we are just gearing up for the incentive which is our next big thing.” RESULTS $50,000 Buck Brothers John Deere Grand Prix: Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults / Time / R2 Faults / Time 1. MTM Apple / Tracy Fenney / MTM Farm / 0 / 72.548 / 0 / 36.606 2. Igor Van De Heibos / Tracy Fenney / MTM Farm / 0 / 70.354 / 0 / 36.917 3. Zero Gravity / Lauren Ditallo / Scott Durchslag / 0 / 71.781 / 0 / 37.499 4. Colora / Ryan Micahel Genn / Bridlebourne Stables LLC / 0 / 71.184 / 0 / 38.667 5. Quadros 3 / Ashley Fleischhacker / Ashland Show Stables LLC / 0 / 72.778 / 0 / 43.768 6. MTM Reve Du Paradis / Tracy Fenney / MTM Farm / 0 / 72.007 / 4 / 35.983 7. Valinski S / Steve Schaefer / Wyndmont Inc. / 0 / 69.106 / 4 / 36.312 8. Firewall / Theo Genn / Eduardo Leon / 0 / 73.709 / 4 / 37.103 9. Dieta / Ryan Micahel Genn / Taylor Blackman / 0 / 69.970 / 4 / 39.952 10. Ypsilon / Shannon Hicks / Helen Gilbert / 0 / 70.791 / Withdrew 11. MTM Como No / Tracy Fenney / MTM Farm / 1 / 74.147 / – / – 12. Boucanier / Theo Genn / Taylor Blackman / 1 / 74.459 / – / –
Gabriella Lewis and Lex Toccino Take Back-To-Back Blues for Large Junior 3'3" Hunter Championship
Saturday marked the conclusion of the Equifest II hunter divisions at the Lamplight Equestrian Center. The culmination of the divisions during the World Championship Hunter Rider week led talented horses and riders to the winner's circle to claim their grand champion and reserve champion titles. Of the deserving pairs was Gabriella Lewis and Lex Toccino, awarded the Large Junior 3'3" Hunter division champion ribbon.
Lewis and Lex Toccino, a 10-year-old Oldenburg gelding owned by Michael Burnett, were on top of their game in both over fences classes of the Large Junior 3’3” Hunter division this Saturday. Scoring an 86 in the first round and an 84 in the handy round, Lex Toccino received back-to-back blue ribbons for his efforts, even conquering the trot jump which has been troublesome for the pair in the past. Lewis and Lex Toccino’s performances over the two days put them on top of the division, earning the championship title and a trip to the winner’s circle. Taking the reserve champion ribbon in the Large Junior 3’3” Hunter division was Mira Stephens and Giselle. The 12-year-old Warmblood mare owned by Rendezvous Farm executed two consistent trips in the final day. The pair had an incredibly successful first day of competition, taking third and first in the over fences to give them points for the reserve championship honors. In the Large Junior 3’6” Hunter division, Friday’s leading rider, Natalie Jayne and Caston, clinched the championship title after receiving two consecutive second places on Saturday. The 9-year-old Holsteiner gelding owned by Jayne and Molly Mcadow scored an 84 and 85 in their over fences on the second day of the division’s competition. Brynn Kuhnell and Simply Ponies, LLC’s Salt, jumped to the reserve championship in the Large Junior 3’6” Hunter division. Scores of 85 in the first round and 87 in the handy round gave the 9-year-old Warmblood gelding the lead in both jogs, picking up two blue ribbons as they exited the arena. Salt was most recently second at the USEF Junior Hunter National Championships $4,000 Large Junior 15 & Under Handy class. As the final day of World Championship Hunter Rider Week, the $5,000 USHJA National Derby and $15,000 USHJA International Derby will take place Sunday, August 4, at 8:00 a.m. in the Grand Prix Arena. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Gabriella Lewis – Junior 3’3” Hunter champion On her horse: “Lex is Michael Burnett’s horse. I get the opportunity to ride him and I love him so much, he is great. He is really easy to get into the ring and he doesn’t require a whole lot of prep. He can just walk in and I love that.” On her rounds: “My trips were great today! Yesterday we started out not as great but we were able to smooth everything out for the second trip and then we won both classes today. In the handy, I was really focused on the trot jump because at the last couple of shows I have messed the trot jump up. We have been working really hard on it so I was happy when I nailed it today.” On Lamplight Equestrian Center: “I just moved to Michael’s last year so we have not been here together yet. I was here a couple of years ago and I really like the facility. I love it here and I am hoping to come back! I just think it is beautiful here, I love all the trees and it is a great place to be.”
Emma Seving and Brighton Bay Claim High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper Win at Equifest II
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 2, 2019 – Competition at the Chicago Festival of the Horse continued on Friday, August 2 in the Grand Prix Arena with the Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper divisions. Before the weekend’s upcoming $50,000 Buck Brothers John Deere Grand Prix, the High and Medium riders first took to the ring. Junior rider Emma Seving and her own Brighton Bay took home the victory in the Highs, while Cathy Rolfs riding Coco Chanelle clinched the Medium class win.
Course designer Leopoldo Palacias continued to create fun and challenging courses for the competitors as the week has progressed, requiring them to take extra care as they navigated ten obstacles and raced towards the finish. The course was a true test of skill for riders, as even High Junior/Amateur-Owner class winner Seving had a rail down to finish the speed round with a 4-fault effort in 55.424 seconds. Other horse-and-rider combinations in the class made their attempts at catching Seving’s time, but none were quite quick enough to replace her name on the leaderboard. Mikayla Foster and Ash Ville Rock came the closest, completing their course with 4 faults and a time of 56.255 seconds to end the class in second place. Lynsey Whitacre and Barillo W finished hot on Foster’s heels, also riding a 4-fault round in 56.637 seconds. In the Medium Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumpers s, just two of the competitors were able to cross the finish with fault-free rounds and take the top two positions. Cathy Rolfs and Coco Chanelle displayed great agility while keeping up the pace, tripping the timers in just 49.854 seconds with a clear effort. Cailin Schaefer riding Diamant De Reve were the only other pair to boast a clean round, finishing their course in 55.509 seconds. Emily Smith and Hesenti put in a strong effort, but unfortunately had a rail down, completing their round with 4 faults in 54.141 seconds. The highlight event of Equifest II, the $50,000 Buck Brothers John Deere Grand Prix, is set to kick-off on Saturday, Aug. 3 at 4 p.m. The $20,000 Jumper Speed Derby will close out the week of competition on Sunday, Aug. 4 following the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby and the $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby in the Grand Prix Arena. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Emma Seving – High Junior/Amateur-Owner Jumper winner On Brighton Bay: “We imported him in December, he is super cool. He is just about 9 years old, and he just jumps his heart out over everything. He really gives me his all every time. He’s been with me since the beginning of WEF [Winter Equestrian Festival] in January.” On her ride: “I really liked the four-stride to the two-stride across the center, he gave me some really great efforts there and gave me a really great effort over the last jump. It was a little bit gappy and he just closed it right up. I went last, so I had a pretty good scoop of what I had to do to win. One had gone clear, so I played it safe and did eight in the last line to put in a nice, clear round. I had just moved up with him a few shows ago, so I’m still playing it safe, having nice clear rounds and getting comfortable in the 1.40m. I did my first 1.40m class probably Week 11 of WEF. On Lamplight Equestrian Center: “This is my first year here, I love it! It is so pretty. The grand prix ring is huge and the climate here is just so nice. It’s beautiful, the rings are great and our barn is cute.” RESULTS Junior Amateur-Owner 1.40m: Place / Horse / Rider / R1 Faults / Time 1. Brighton Bay / Emma Seving / 4 / 55.424 2. Ash Ville Rock / Mikayla Foster / 4 / 56.255 3. Barillo W / Lynsey Whitacre / 4 / 56.637 4. Cuidento Z / Carson Ruff / 12 / 73.649 Junior Amateur-Owner 1.30m: Place / Horse / Rider / R1 Faults / Time 1. Coco Chanelle / Cathy Rolfs / 0 / 49.854 2. Diamant De Reve / Cailin Schaefer / 0 / 55.509 3. Hesenti / Emily Smith / 4 / 54.141 4. Liverpool / Olivia Lawton / 4 / 54.480 5. Zorzuela Leuze Z / Lynsey Whitacre / 4 / 58.832 6. Lintina 2 / Ashely Bewick / 4 / 60.086 7. Joplin Ter Doorn / Anna Deubel / 8 / 50.596 8. Tipperary Hill / Izabelle Quadracci / 8 / 50.961
Starting Out On The Right Foot: Natalie Jayne and Caston Lead Junior 3’6” Hunter During WCHR Week at Equifest II
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 2, 2019 – Yet another day of sunny skies and 75 degree weather set the perfect stage for horses and athletes to give it their all in competition at the Lamplight Equestrian Center. Progressing through World Championship Hunter Rider week at Equifest II, Friday brought amateurs and junior riders to the Main Hunter Arena aboard their top hunter mounts. In the Junior 3’6” Hunter division, Natalie Jayne and Caston gained an early lead to head the field of horses and riders going into Saturday’s competition.
Jayne and Caston, a 9-year-old Holsteiner gelding owned by Jayne and Molly Mcadow, received scores of 84 and 85 in their over fences rounds, taking second place in both classes. Jayne and Caston won the $1,000 Junior Hunter Classic during Equifet I, this week concluding in second place position at the 3’6” height with an overall score of 165. Caston is a skilled horse in both the equitation and hunter classes, serving as Jayne’s primary equitation mount heading into the big equitation finals this fall. The winner of the $1,000 Junior 3’6” Hunter Classic for Equifest II was Taylor Holstead and Roc’s All That. Holstead’s 10-year-old Oldenburg mare jumped to scores of 86 and 84 in the classic, winning by a total of 5 points in the end. Roc’s All That is a regular in the Junior Hunter divisions and even competed in the Large Junior 3’6” 16-17 division at the USEF Junior Hunter National Championships – East Coast last month. The conclusion of the Junior Hunter division will take place on Saturday, August 3, where the champion and reserve champion titles will be named. World Championship Hunter Rider Week will culminate on Sunday, August 4, with the $5,000 USHJA National Derby and $15,000 USHJA International Derby set in the Grand Prix Arena. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Natalie Jayne – Junior Hunter 3’6” Division leader On her horse: “We got Caston at the end of the WEF circuit in Florida this year, so we have only had him for about five months. We co-own him with Molly Macadow and we are leasing him until the end of the year with the option to buy him out. We mainly show him in the equitation, but we show him in the hunters as well to keep him comfortable. He was a hunter before, so we have been keeping him in the hunters for a few shows now. It is good practice for him and makes him more comfortable when we do the equitation.” On her rounds: “I was really pleased with his trips today. He went great and I really feel that he is getting better every round. I am proud of him for being so consistent and good” On Lamplight: “We come to all of the weeks of Equifest every year and it is one of my favorite shows of the year. It is so close to home and the showgrounds are so pretty. I also like that everyone knows each other around the showgrounds.”
Tracy Fenney and MTM Apple Take Home $25,000 Purina Welcome Grand Prix Victory
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 1, 2019 – One of Equifest II’s highlight events, the $25,000 Purina Welcome Grand Prix, kicked off on Thursday afternoon in Lamplight’s Grand Prix Arena. Drawing a field of 41 talented equestrian athletes, the Welcome saw riders pull out all the stops in an effort to end the class at the top of the leaderboard. After an exciting jump-off round, it was Tracy Fenney and MTM Apple who took home the top prize.
The course, designed by Leopoldo Palacias, featured several rollbacks and challenging combinations that kept horses and riders on their toes, all while keeping up a quick pace to avoid any time penalties. Just second to go in the order, Fenney and MTM Apple, owned by MTM Farm, set a good example with a brisk, clear round. Several horse-and-rider combinations who followed found the course to be a test of their skills, and had rails or time penalties in the first round. The second pair to go clear wasRyan Michael Genn and Dieta, owned by Taylor Blackman. Emulating Fenney’s round, Genn piloted the mare around a fault-free course within the time-allowed to ensure a jump-off. Nine total combinations added their names to the jump-off list, including Stefanie Collier riding Emma-Lee, Dorothy Douglas riding MTM Through the Looking Glass and Steve Schaeffer riding Valinski S. Also comprised of rollbacks and combinations, the jump-off course required technical skills but also allowed riders a place to open up and gallop to the last line of fences. Fenney and MTM Apple were the first to re-enter the arena for the jump-off, taking great care to leave all fences up and turn up the speed for a finish in just 31.754 seconds. Genn and Dieta were up next with their sights set on beating Fenney’s quick time. The pair successfully rode a clear course, but were not able to set a new time-to-beat, finishing in 32.216 seconds. Fenney and Genn held the top two positions in the class until Douglas rode MTM Through the Looking Glass back into the arena. Riding an accurate and speedy course, Douglas crossed the finish line in 31.874 seconds, replacing Genn in second place but finishing just shy of Fenney’s leading time. Fenney and MTM Apple remained at the top of the leaderboard to take the win, a first-time grand prix victory for the 8-year-old gelding. Douglas and MTM Through the Looking Glass took home the class’ second place prize, while Genn and Dieta finished in third place. Jumper competition at the Chicago Festival of the Horse will resume on Friday, Aug. 2, with the Junior Amateur-Owner Jumper divisions. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Tracy Fenney – $25,000 Purina Welcome Grand Prix winner On MTM Apple: “We have had Apple for a year now – we got her here last year actually. This was her first grand prix win tonight and she is only 8 years old. I haven’t done that many grand prix [classes] with her because of her age, so we really only started doing them this year. She did one in Ocala and then in Fort Worth, but that is pretty much all she has done.” On her plans for the future with MTM Apple: “I would like to just keep building her up. Like I said, she is only 8 years old, so I don’t want to do too much too soon. I would like to keep doing classes she is confident in to keep her brave.” On her rounds: “The time-allowed was extremely tight in the course. I went super fast on Apple but on my other horses I realized I was going to be in trouble because Apple is a fast horse and the others are slower. In the jump-off I figured I just needed to do what I could. There were eight great riders behind me and everyone rides fast so I didn’t have much choice but to give it my all. I think I gained the most time to the last jump. I saw the distance so far away and every stride I was able to build where Dory (Dorothy Douglas) had to balance up once to it.” On Lamplight: “We love Lamplight. The facility is beautiful, Nina does an amazing job. To me, you feel like you’re riding in someone’s backyard when you’re here. We could not have a prettier backdrop to ride against. The surrounding towns are also amazing, between Geneva and St. Charles, it is so cool. Everything is convenient, the river is beautiful and the weather is perfect!” Dorothy Douglas – $25,000 Purina Welcome Grand Prix second place On MTM Through The Looking Glass: “MTM Through The Looking Glass is an 11-year-old owned by Davenport Farms. We got her midway through the Ocala circuit and she was actually third last week in the 1.50m! She is a super firey, really careful little mare. I really feel like I am getting to know her now and every class she feels better and better.” On her rounds: “My game plan going in was to honestly copy what Tracy [Fenney] did. I watched her warm-up with Apple for the jump-off and I realized I needed to do a right hand turn over the oxer to fence two, tidy going back to the jump with the green underneath and gallop to the last jump. I want to be beat by my boss only so this is the best!” RESULTS $25,000 Purina Welcome Grand Prix Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults / Time / R2 Faults / Time 1. MTM Apple / Tracy Fenney / MTM Farm / 0 / 74.881 / 0 / 31.754 2. MTM Through The Looking Glass / Dorothy Douglas / 0 / 73.813 / 0 / 31.874 3. Dieta / Ryan Michael Genn / Taylor Blackman / 0 / 75.623 / 0 / 32.216 4. Chagrand / Micahel Burnett / Michael Burnett / 0 / 74.585 / 0 / 33.240 5. Freaky Liefhebber / Jacqueline Steffens / Jacqueline Steffens / 0 / 74.651 / 0 / 34.064 6. Colora / Ryan Micahel Genn / Bridlebourne Stables LLC / 0 / 75.636 / 0 / 34.273 7. Chaccomo 11 / Theo Genn / Bridlebourne Stables LLC / 0 / 75.861 / 0 / 34.810 8. Valiniski S / Steve Schaefer / Wyndmont Inc. / 0 / 72.973 / 4 / 30.633 9. Emma-Lee / Stefanie Collier / The C and C Group / 0 / 75.665 / 4 / 33.173 10. MTM Como No / Tracy Fenney / MTM Farm / 1 / 76.819 11. Titus 2:11 / Sydney Swarr / Derek Petersen / 2 / 77.103 12. MTM Cornada / Dorothy Douglas / Davenport Farms / 4 / 72.317
Hallie Moss and Birtley’s Crowned Jewel Take Top Honors in $1,500 USHJA Pony Hunter Derby, Presented by Old Barrington Farm
Wayne, Ill. – Aug. 1, 2019 – On Thursday at the Lamplight Equestrian Center, World Championship Hunter Rider week continued with the focus shifting to pony competition. Seventeen ponies, ranging from the small to large size, jumped around the Hunter II Ring in hopes of receiving the coveted blue neck ribbon, but only one could emerge victorious. Ultimately, it was Hallie Moss and Birtley’s Crowned Jewel who stood center ring, decked in the winning scrim and shiny blue ribbon, and wearing a smile as they were awarded the winning honors, the lion’s share of money and a set of Pomms pony earplugs gifted by Equine Healthcare International.
Modeled after the international and national hunter derby programs, the USHJA Pony Hunter Derby, presented by Old Barrington Farm, featured two rounds with the first in the form of a classic hunter style course and the second as a handy hunter styled course. After the panel of two judges gave out first round scores, they invited back the top twelve pony-and-rider combinations that scored above the 68 mark. A challenging handy course equipped with rollback turns, a trot jump and an in-and-out tested the ponies to keep their form while meeting jumps off of a short approach and remain patient to long approach single fences. Answering all of the questions asked by both rounds’ courses, Moss and Birtley’s Crowned Jewel, Three Ships LLC’s 12-year-old medium Welsh Pony, received scores of 84 and 86 to take a 10-point lead on the second place rider. Moss shows Birtley’s Crowned Jewel in both hunter and equitation class and is looking forward to taking the gelding to USEF Pony Finals next week. With a first round score of 86, Addison Stoughton and Newhaven’s Magnum led the way moving into the second round. Stoughton’s 14-year-old medium Welsh Pony Cross jumped to a second round score of 74, totaling to 160 and ultimately taking the reserve title in the class. The gelding is well known for his eloquent movement, frequently winning the medium pony division under saddle classes. Emma Rupinski and the family-owned Stonewall Top Call represented the large pony category by placing third in the class. Rupinski rode to a first round score of 85, placing her in second for the jog in between rounds. The pairs second round score of 70 contributed to their overall score of 155, only trailing Stoughton by 5 points. Stonewall Top Call, an 11-year-old Welsh Thoroughbred cross gelding, has topped many divisions across Zone 4 competitions this year. Hunter competition at Equifest II, WCHR week, will continue on Friday, August 2. The highlight event of the week, the $15,000 International Hunter Derby, will take place on Sunday, August 4, in the Grand Prix Arena. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Hallie Moss – $1,500 USHJA Pony Hunter Derby winner On Birtley’s Crowned Jewel: “His name is Teddy. He is super sweet and friendly, he is such a nice pony. Abby Blankenship owns him and she is letting me ride him. I will be riding him at Pony Finals next week so I am excited about that. On her rounds: “Teddy was amazing. I liked both of my rounds he was so good. I really liked the handy – rollbacks are my favorite.” On Lamplight: “We came to Lamplight last year and loved it. It is so pretty here and all of the horses really seem to enjoy it!” RESULTS $1,500 USHJA Pony Hunter Derby results: Place / Horse / Rider / R1 Score / R2 Score / Total Score 1. Birtley’s Crowned Jewel / Hallie Moss / 84 / 86 / 170 2. Newhaven’s Magnum / Addison Stoughton / 86 / 74 / 160 3. Stonewall Top Call / Emma Rupinski / 85 / 70 / 155 4. Stonewall Eleanor / Elise Stephens / 83 / 68 / 151 5. Kid Rock / Olivia Galley / 73 / 78.5 / 151.5 6. Woodlands Polar Bear / Lillian Stoughton / 68 / 82.5 / 150.5 7. En Vogue / Rachel Sutton / 74 / 76 / 150 8. Good Reason / Taylor Landstrom / 76 / 72 / 148 9. Alleghany / Kate Barton / 70 / 75 / 145 10. Hershey’s Kiss / Alexa Anastasio / 75 / 65 / 140 11. Sugarbrook Burnside / Lillian Stoughton / 69.5 / 60 / 129.5 12. Magical Diamond / Addison Stoughton / 82 / – / 82
Dorothy Douglas and MTM Cornada Race to 1.35m Open Jumper Win in Equifest II
Wayne, Ill. – July 31, 2019 – On the second day of competition in Equifest II, jumper riders returned to the Grand Prix Arena at Lamplight for another day of packed competition. Before some of the week’s highlight classes kick off with the $25,000 Welcome Grand Prix on Thursday and the $50,000 John Deere Grand Prix on Saturday, riders prepared with the 1.35m Open Jumpers. Proving their affinity for speed, Dorothy Douglas and MTM Cornada rode to a clear victory in the competitive class.
The course, built by Leopoldo Palacias, required speed of the riders as they only had one round to claim their placing on the leaderboard. The first to go clear and take an early lead in the class was professional Steve Schaeffer aboard Frascati, owned by Wyndmont Inc. The pair rode skillfully over all eleven obstacles, finishing in just 61.892 seconds. Other combinations were unable to surpass Schaeffer’s clear and fast time, often knocking a rail until rider Liz Atkins and Carletta entered the ring. Guiding the mare owned by Benchmark Stables LLC through the windy course, going clear and taking a new leading time of 60.932 seconds. With a new time to challenge, Douglas rode MTM Cornada into the arena, aiming for a clear effort. She rode the 10-year-old mare, a new mount for her and Davenport Farms, carefully around the course, leaving up all the rails and finishing in a speedy 57.417 seconds. Douglas’ time remained undefeated throughout the rest of the class, but Schaeffer beat his first mount’s time that sat in third place, piloting Wyndmont Inc.’s Alter Ego into the position with a clear round and slightly faster time of 61.768 seconds. In the 1.30m Open Jumper class, Mikayla Foster rode her own Ashville Rock into the winner’s circle with double-clear rounds and a jump-off time of 33.267 seconds. Ashley Fleischhacker and Ashland Show Stables LLC’s Durango VDL took home a second place finish with clear efforts and a jump-off time of 36.949 seconds. Laura Roesing and her own Darco’s Lynx completed the top three in the class, finishing with a 4-fault effort in the jump-off and a time of 41.098 seconds. Jumper competition will resume at the Chicago Festival of the Horse on Thursday, Aug. 1 with the $25,000 Welcome Grand Prix set to begin at 4 p.m. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Dorothy Douglas – 1.35m Open Jumpers winner On MTM Cornada: “She is a new ride for me. Davenport Farms, Michelle and Abigail Davenport, they own another mare that I ride in the grand prix, Through the Looking Glass. They just bought her [Cornada] on our last trip to Europe. She is a 10-year-old, we actually watched her show in Germany and do a big 1.50m class. She flew, did quarantine for 21 days and this is my third time riding her here. We did some little tweaks on the bridles and here we are. I came out of the ring and thought ‘this is totally my horse.’ You fly over to Europe and try horses, but it’s usually a little time in between the last time you rode them and they get here. I really felt like after the class today that this is totally my next grand prix horse.” On her round: “I think I need to get to know her stride a little bit more, so I overdid it a little just because I don’t know her that well. I thought the track was great. I think I could have maybe left out one step from the vertical on the end, I ended up doing eight to this oxer, but looking back I could have maybe left out one step if I knew her a little more. We also did an inside turn after the in-and-out. I thought it was a really nice speed round to get to know my new horse.” On her future plans with MTM Cornada: “I think our plan right now is to just get her fit. She feels a little bit down from quarantine, I think the flight takes a little bit out of them. Moving forward it is getting them fit and finishing off the week with maybe another 1.35m or 1.40m. Maybe we will do the Grand Prix tomorrow, but I’m not sure yet. We will just keep on moving up. The Davenports have been customers of ours for a couple years now, the daughter owns MTM Exceptional who I ride in a lot of the derbies and she rides him in the amateurs. It’s fun to do everything with Mike and Tracy, who have an incredible eye for horses and teach people how to ride, and have someone else who wants to back you and go to fun horse shows. It’s really cool. I’ve been with them for about eight years now. I give it all I have, Mike and Tracy are amazing.” RESULTS 1.35m Open Jumpers Place / Horse / Rider / Owner / R1 Faults / Time 1. Dorothy Douglas / MTM Cornada / Davenport Farms / 0 / 57.417 2. Liz Atkins / Carletta / Benchmark Stables LLC / 0 / 60.932 3. Steve Schaeffer / Alter Ego / Wyndmont Inc / 0 / 61.768 4. Steve Schaeffer / Frascati / Wyndmont Inc / 0 / 61.892 5. Alexandra Veleris / Peter Pan / Third Coast Equestrian LLC / 2 / 68.01 6. Jacqueline Steffens / Gap Van De Kai / Carson Grisham / 4 / 64.421 7. Jacqueline Steffens / Calordo / Bertrand Legriffon / 7 / 69.154 8. Mark McKone / Fearless / Mark McKone / 8 / 63.386 9. Anna Hallene / Grappa / Glenwood Farm LLC / 8 / 65.105 10. Maggie Jayne / Lander / Jonathan Cohen / 8 / 70.289
Amanda Thomas and MTM First Take Make Winning First Impression at Equifest II WCHR Week
Wayne, Ill. – July 30, 2019 – Marking the start of Equifest II and World Championship Hunter Rider (WCHR) week at the Lamplight Equestrian Center, Green Hunter competition took to the Main Hunter Arena on Tuesday morning. Professionals and their mounts made their Week Two debuts in efforts to secure an early lead in the divisions and capture the tricolor ribbon on Wednesday. For the second week in a row, Amanda Thomas and MTM First Take made a first impression that put them at the top of the leaderboard in the Green 3’9” Hunter division, while Dorothy Douglas and MTM Check In topped the Green 3’3” Hunter division.
In the first over fences round of the Green 3’9” Hunter division, Thomas and her 11-year-old Westphalian gelding earned a score of 83, topping the competitive class by 3 points. MTM First Take continued to show judges style and skill in the second round, scoring an 82 and taking second place ribbon. The pair solidified their lead in the flat class when MTM First Take showed off his impressive movement through the gaits, strutting into second place. Tied with Thomas until the flat class, Holly Shepherd and Micaela Kennedy’s Jerez Mail are currently set up for the reserve championship title in the Green 3’9” Hunter division. The 7-year-old Warmblood gelding jumped to a score of 80 in the first round, placing second. In the second class, Shepherd and Jerez Mail earned the highest score of the division, an 84, for the blue ribbon. The tie between MTM First Take and Jerez Mail was broken when Jerez Mail received a fourth on the flat. On Tuesday afternoon, 14 horse-and-rider combinations showed their best in the Green 3’3” Hunter division. Capturing the highest scores of the division with a 90 and 92, was Douglas and MTM Check In, an 8-year-old gelding owned by MTM Farm. The Oldenburg won both over fences in addition to placing fourth on the flat, setting himself up nicely for the championship title moving into the conclusion of the division on Wednesday. Holly Shepherd and As You Wish, a 12-year-old Oldenburg gelding owned by Ashley Runnels, are the current reserve leaders of the Green 3’3” Hunter division. The hack winner scored an 84.5 and 90 over fences for the third and second ribbon before winning the flat. Founded in 1992 by the United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA), the WCHR program celebrates the accomplishments of the hunter rider. Member Events, like Equifest, are held throughout the country, where riders accumulate points towards their National and Regional rankings. In October, the top 10 nationally ranked riders in each WCHR category and top six riders from each region will compete for the WCHR National Champion title in each respective WCHR Challenge category at Capital Challenge Horse Show. Competition at Equifest II will continue on Wednesday, July 31, at 8:00 a.m. with the conclusion of the Green 3’6” Hunter division in the Main Hunter Arena. FROM THE WINNER’S CIRCLE Amanda Thomas – Green 3’9” Hunter division leader On her horse: “I have had MTM First Take for three years in September. I got him when he was doing the Green 3’ Hunter division, so I have taken him the whole way, really. He is 11 years old and has so much character.” On her rounds: “My horse was wonderful, he jumped amazing and I thought the courses rode really well. I wanted to be consistent again this week. He will always do it right if I do it right!” On WCHR week at Lamplight: “I am so happy to be here, we love it here. The weather could not have been better last week and this week, it is amazing! We have nine horses here this week so it’s exciting! Lamplight is great.”