Wellington, FL - When a vivacious Charlotte Jorst talks about competing in dressage, her high spirits are infectious. “I have loved it here,” she said of the weeks she has spent in Wellington, Florida for the 2015 Adequan Global Dressage Festival. “I’ve loved the fact that I can get into the ring all the time every week, and that I’ve gotten so much experience. For me, after sitting in an office for twenty-five years, it’s just been amazing to be outside, and ride, and achieve this dream.” In recognition of the optimistic, lighthearted attitude and good sportsmanship Jorst has brought along with her talent to the competition, Custom Saddlery named her a winner of their Most Valuable Rider Award.
“I was always an adult amateur — I just had a horse and rode after work,” said Jorst, who was able to devote more of her time to dressage after she and her husband Henrik sold their worldwide brand of watches, Skagen Designs, to Fossil in 2012. Although Charlotte Jorst then began her popular equestrian apparel business Kastel Denmark, she has still found time to follow her passion of riding. “Three years ago, I was able to start riding more. So this is truly unbelievable for me. Truly— I never thought that this would happen.”
Without this insight, spectators would never take Jorst — who rides in the Adult Amateur division — for a relative newcomer to Florida competition. Her performances this season with her ten-year-old KWPN gelding Kastel’s Adventure, in particular, prove that she means business. During Week Ten at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival, which was their final week competing in the Florida dressage circuit, Jorst and Adventure took first place in both the Prix St. Georges and Intermediate I with a score of 71.842 percent and 72.868 percent respectively. They finished off the weekend with a score of 74.350 in the Freestyle Intermediate I, taking second place in the test. “Adventure was wonderful,” said an elated Jorst. “He’s come such a long way since we started out here — he started out around 66 percent, and we’ve just been moving up the ranks. It’s been amazing!”
In addition to Adventure, Jorst brought two other horses to Florida — twelve-year-old Hanoverian mare Fraktura (Ferro x Canilla) and twelve-year-old KWPN stallion Kastel’s Nintendo (Negro x Rodieni R), with whom she placed fifth in the Grand Prix Special with a score of 70.059 percent during Week Ten of the competition.
After returning to her home base in Reno, Nevada — where she owns and operates Kastel Denmark, named after her native country — Jorst plans to compete Adventure in the Pan American games. “Otherwise, I am going to go to Europe on my own and start competing,” she said.
Jorst, who owns all three of her mounts, believes that a positive attitude and a good relationship with one’s horse are vital to competing in dressage. “I think that the horses do more for you if they are happy and they want to go,” she explained. “Look at Adventure going into that ring — ears are up, you know, the whole thing, he’s just so excited! Horses live in the now, and they can feel however you feel. If you feel bad or anything, then they will feel it right there and then, and they just won’t do this for you.”
As a winner of Custom Saddlery’s Most Valuable Rider Award, Jorst received a ribbon and a beautifully embroidered saddle pad from the Aiken, South-Carolina based company — the maker of the Official Saddles of the U.S. Dressage Team through the 2016 Olympics.
“I have used Custom saddles in the past, and I loved them!” smiled Jorst.
In addition to supporting riders through its MVR Award, Custom Saddlery is a proud sponsor of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival. Based out of Aiken, South Carolina, Custom Saddlery offers advanced saddles for dressage and jumping that are based on exceptional fit for both horse and rider. The company provides countless ways to customize saddles to help each individual horse and rider achieve their comfort and performance goals. Custom Saddlery also provides professional saddle fitting services and manufactures beautiful accessories including stirrup leathers, girths, and saddle pads.
For more information about Custom Saddlery, visit www.mysaddle.com or call 1-800-235-3865.