Ottawa, ON — At the first stop of their European Tour, Canadian Para-Dressage team have earned top scores in both the Team and Individual Championships tests while competing at the CPEDI 3* Hartpury Festival of Dressage at Hartpury College, in Gloucestershire, GBR, being held July 13–15, 2011. In Grade II, Lauren Barwick of Aldergrove, BC rode her team horse Off To Paris, Equine Canada’s 10-year-old Oldenburg mare, and earnd a score of 71.667% for fourth place in the Team test on July 13. On July 14 the pair earned 67.667% for sixth spot in the Individual Championship test. With her second horse Ferdonia 2, her own 12-year-old Oldenburg mare, Barwick scored 68.381%, for sixth, in the Team test and 69.667%, which was good for fifth place in the Individual Championship test.
Riding her 2010 World Equestrian Games mount Why Not G, an eight-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding that she co-owns with Kelleigh Kulscar, Eleonore Elstone of Langley, BC received a score of 64.375% and fifth place in the Grade IV Team test. In the Individual Championship test, Elstone and Why Not G finished in fifth place, scoring 64.616%.
In the Grade 1B Team test Ashley Gowanlock of Vancouver, BC and Alexander (Sandy) Mitchell’s Donnymaskell, a 12-year-old Hanoverian gelding, received a score of 68.682% for third place. The duo also earned 65.565% for third place in the Individual Championship test.
"I felt very confident and prepared coming into this competition thanks all of the hard work of our national team coach, Andrea Taylor, and I would like to thank Own the Podium for making this tour possible” said Gowanlock, who received the team’s top finishes in both the Team and Individual Championship tests. “I am very excited about my partnership with Donny and feel that this competition is a great springboard toward my goal of representing Canada at the 2012 London Paralympic Games."
Jody Schloss of Toronto, ON, riding Inspector Rebus, her own 13-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, placed ninth in the Team test and 11th place in the Individual Championship test.
Competing as an individual, Robyn Andrews of St Johns, NL, rode Fancianna, her 10-year-old Warmblood mare, to 14th place in the Team test and 12th place in the Individual Championship test.
“This is my third time competing with a Canadian team at Hartpury. This year's competition has, for me, been the best. Not only has it been the busiest and most intense, but also the one that I am most proud of the riders—both those at their first big international show and those seasoned competitors who have risen to the occasion. They have worked hard and their results are reflecting that,” said Taylor, Team coach. “I feel really positive going forward to London 2012. We are not only showing that we have very competitive, seasoned riders, but also a good base of top horses and riders coming up behind them.”
“The icing on the cake has been the great teamwork between the riders, grooms, and support staff,” she added.
The competition continues with the Individual Freestyle Tests for all Grades on July 15th.
The combined scores from the Team Test and the Individual Championship Test will determine the final team placings, which are also being awarded on July 15th.
“Viterra is very pleased to support the ongoing accomplishments of the Canadian Para-Dressage Team. Their commitment to success has been very visible during the stop of their European Tour at Hartpury,” said Bill Mooney, Viterra’s senior vice-president, Feed Products.
Complete details CPEDI 3* Hartpury Festival of Dressage may be found at www.hartpury.ac.uk/dressage.
After CPEDI 3* Hartpury Festival of Dressage, the Canadian riders will attend Bishop Burton CPEDI2*, which will also be held in Great Britain. The purpose of the 2011 European Tour is ultimately to prepare athletes and horses for the 2012 Paralympic Games.
The 2011 European Tour is made possible through the Own the Podium program, a national sport technical initiative designed to help Canada’s summer and winter athletes achieve podium success at the Olympic and Paralympic Games.