Collecting Gaits Farm will once again provide dedicated support to the 2009 Collecting Gaits Farm/ United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) Dressage Festival of Champions, which last year determined the 2008 Olympic Team in Dressage. Collecting Gaits Farm has supported the Festival of Champions for many years, and will once again serve as title sponsor. This year’s event will serve as a stepping stone to the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) as well as the 2012 Olympic Games for many of the horse/rider combinations.
Preparation for the WEG has long since been underway as US riders seek to secure a spot on the team that will represent their country next year on their home soil. 2010 marks the first year the WEG will be held outside of Europe.
The Festival of Champions is set to return to the USET Foundation headquarters in Gladstone, NJ, June 18-21. This prominent event will showcase the nation’s 12 best horse/rider combinations competing for National Championship titles in the Junior, Young Rider, Young Adult “Brentina Cup”, Intermediaire I, and Grand Prix divisions. Held annually since 1991, the Festival has played a vital role in selecting the elite teams that represent the US at the World Championships, Olympics and Pan American Games.
Also special to this year’s event, the Grand Prix Dressage Freestyle will be held Saturday evening. It will be the highlight class of the event and will feature demonstrations as well the always entertaining and exciting freestyle competition.
“This will be a really fun year at Gladstone to watch up-and-coming competitors showcase and gain experience for their future careers like Devon Kane competing for the Brentina Cup, and Reese Koffler-Stanfield in the Grand Prix.” said Shereen Fuqua of Collecting Gaits Farm. “Last month you could hear the clapping and cheering all the way back to Georgia from the Raleigh CDI after Lauren Sammis' freestyle debut. So she will be one to keep an eye on, as well as Adrienne Lyle in the Grand Prix. I am impressed with the riders traveling from the west coast to compete here like Shannon Peters and Jan Ebeling. My husband Jeff and I have always tried to help various dressage riders of all levels, like Shawna Harding last year. This year we are particularly happy to sponsor Kim Schisler competing for the Brentina Cup.”
With the nation’s top riders coming to center stage, the Festival will provide a thrilling exhibition of world class riding. Many of these riders such as Arlene Page, Michael Barisone, Leslie Morse, Lauren Sammis, Shelly Francis and Courtney King-Dye have represented the US at multiple World Cup Finals, WEG, Pan Am and the Olympic Games. The 2008 Young Adult “Brentina Cup” winner, Adrienne Lyle will be returning this year to compete with two horses in the Grand Prix, Felix and Wizard, both owned by Peggy Thomas. Olympic rider Courtney King-Dye is also a rider to watch as she brings two horses to the Intermediaire division. King-Dye will be riding Collecting Gaits Farms’ rising star, Bogner B, and well as Hampton Green Farms’ Grandioso.
Collecting Gaits Farm, owned by Jeff and Shereen Fuqua, and located in Alpharetta, GA, a suburb of Atlanta, has provided an unparalleled devotion to the sport of Dressage. Their partnership with the USEF has aided in producing some of the country’s finest Dressage riders.
For more information on the Festival and to access live scoring, please visit http://www.usef.org/contentPage2.aspx?id=dressagefestival