Loxahatchee, Florida – Anne Gribbons and Alazan took the win in Saturday's FEI Grand Prix de Dressage at the Wellington Classic Dressage Challenge II. They earned the blue ribbon with a score of 68.227 percent. Right behind them in second place was the pair of Christopher Hickey and Douglas Hilltop with a score of 67.660 and taking third place was Yvonne Losos de Muniz riding Optimus Prime to a score of 64.823. Gribbons also had a win on Friday in the FEI Test of Choice with Dante. Her success this weekend shows her skill at balancing multiple jobs. In addition to her career as competitive rider and trainer, Gribbons is also an FEI "O" judge and the Technical Advisor to the U.S. Dressage Team. Despite her busy schedule, Gribbons said that being a competitor helps her perform better in her other two important jobs.
Being a competitor, keeps her more humble as a judge. "I know what it's like to compete," she said. "Being out there reminds me when I'm judging of how difficult it is and showing also helps keep me from becoming too demanding or arrogant. It keeps you on the straight and narrow."
As much as she enjoys being an international-level judge, Gribbons said her heart is most with her career as competitor and trainer. And, she said, that's why she really enjoys being America's Dressage Technical Advisor. "It's a job that also keeps me in the competitive game."
Gribbons' Grand Prix win on Saturday came on her own horse, Alazan, a 13-year-old Swedish Warmblood. Dante, her other winning partner, is a Hanoverian owned by Maxine Tabas. Gribbons said she was extremely pleased with the showing of both horses, "especially since I have very little time to show."
Gribbons, who has trained more than a dozen horses to Grand Prix, said getting in the show ring is important for helping her to keep her training on track. "If you only train at home, you can easily sit back and think that everything is wonderful when it's not. Showing helps tell you how the training is really going," she said.
As a professional trainer, Gribbons said it's her job to bring along young horses like Dante for clients. Of her own horses, her business over the years has been training them and then selling them. But Alazan is unique. "When you are a professional, you have to sell your horses. That's the business, but sometimes it ripped my heart out. Alazan I'm keeping," Gribbons said. He's not always the easiest of horses, but Gribbons said riding him "makes my day" and helps remind her how lucky she is still to be riding each day. "In the horse business, you bring horses along and then sell them. This means that you never really get to finish the job. But with Alazan, I will keep him and enjoy him," Gribbons said. "And that means that I can now really fine tune things. I really love having him around. He keeps me sane."
[#24523 override="Complete Results for Wellington Classic Dressage Challenge II " title="Complete Results for Wellington Classic Dressage Challenge II "]