Brandon, Manitoba, Canada— For years, top international dressage riders have earned the honor of the Custom Saddlery MVR (Most Valuable Rider) Award for exhibiting outstanding horsemanship and sportsmanship while achieving winning results in the show ring.
When an FEI dressage trainer recently dominated not one but all dressage National Championship classes at the 2017 Canadian National Arabian and Half Arabian Championship Horse Show, it was apparent that she deserved to be in the Custom Saddlery MVR ranks.
Mimi Stanley, who co-owns Prairie Rose Training Center Dressage in Bismarck, North Dakota alongside her mother, brought four horses to the 2017 Canadian National Arabian and Half Arabian Championship Horse Show. The week-long event took place in Brandon, Manitoba, Canada at the Keystone Centre. The show featured championship classes in every dressage level from Training Level through the Prix St. Georges. Stanley and her flashy team managed to win nearly every single one.
Starting small by winning the Training Level National Championship on a 13.2-hand pony, Stanley then won the First Level National Championship on her client’s six-year-old purebred Arabian gelding Ames Explorer, known as “Chance.” Her Second Level National Championship came next, on her client’s 13-year-old half-Arabian, half-American Warmblood stallion Wolkenzorro+//, known as “Zorro.” Zorro and Stanley narrowly missed the National Championship title in Third Level, but claimed the Reserve. Stanley won both the Fourth Level National Championship and the Prix St. Georges National Championship on PR Captain Hook+//, a seasoned competitor owned by Sally Henry.
“I guess it was almost sweeping - so that was pretty special,” Stanley humbly reported after the show.
Custom Saddlery, an innovative saddle manufacturer known for its ability to perfectly fit any horse and for its beautiful saddle designs, sponsored the show with the Custom Saddlery MVR Award. Stanley’s impressive results made her an obvious choice for the award, but it was her First Level victory on Chance that especially caught award presenters’ eyes.
Stanley was proud of the handsome copper chestnut, and is looking forward to his future. “This horse has put in really nice effort,” she said. “He’s a horse that came through the Arabian English pleasure world, and that wasn’t the best fit for him. Now, he’s doing super well in dressage and has really come a long way. We’re excited for him and happy to be part of his path.” His youth owner got a turn to show off Chance in Training Level at the competition, and the young pair will next compete together at United States Dressage Federation (USDF) Regional Championships.
As winner of the Custom Saddlery MVR Award, Stanley received a Custom Saddlery saddle pad, a MVR Award ribbon, and a gift certificate for $150 off of Custom Saddlery merchandise. “It’s great when we have companies like Custom Saddlery that step in and add a something even more to the National Championships - it’s wonderful to have sponsors like that,” said Stanley.
In addition to winning the Custom Saddlery Award and several National Championships, another occasion contributed to Stanley’s banner week. “My birthday was during the show, and we actually won all three National Championships that we entered that day, so that was pretty cool. I’ve been going to the Canadian Nationals since I was 14, and I just turned 28 up there!”
Stanley will be sure to be back next year to defend her Championship titles. “I want to thank the sponsors like Custom Saddlery that make things wonderful for exhibitors, and the show committee at Canadian Nationals, and my fabulous owners that let me be part of these horses’ development.”
Custom Saddlery will continue to be on the lookout for outstanding riders like Stanley at future shows throughout the United States and Canada. For more information about this premier manufacturer of world-class, customized dressage saddles, visit www.mysaddle.com or call 1-800-235-3865.