Wellington, FL – USDF gold, silver and bronze medalist Heidi Degele was presented with the Custom Saddlery Most Valuable Rider (MVR) Award during the Wellington Classic Dressage Challenge III for competing three different horses and coaching two of her students into the ribbons.
Wrapping up the Florida winter season, Degele was very pleased with her success. She rode Don Fredo HD (Don Federico x Pik Bube) owned by Greystone Equestrian, LLC, in the FEI 6-Year-Old Test to a score of 73.4% in what she described as an “almost flawless” performance.
“I’m super proud of this young horse,” she said about Don Fredo, “He really didn’t put a foot wrong!” Because of Degele’s excellent training, Don Fredo is currently ranked 3rd in the nation in the 6-year-old division. She said that after this win she is now more excited than ever to show him at the Markel/USEF National and Developing Championships held August 21-25 in Wayne, IL.
Degele also showed Lakota, an 8-year-old American Warmblood owned by Mesa Farms, LLC, and qualified him for regionals with a score of 67.105% in the FEI Prix St Georges class. And finally, Degele also rode the gorgeous grey Irish Draught stallion, Lionwood Kinsale’s Lad to an impressive 65.395% in Intermediare 1.
In addition to her own success, two of Degele’s clients also rode to impress at the Wellington Classic Dressage Challenge III. Chloe Hatch hit her personal best riding her horse, Slogan and received her highest score ever in the Third Level, Test One with a 64%. Also, Cara Broderick, who, by the way, flies her horse, Duval, over from England to train with Degele, scored a 60% in Third Level, Test Three. Degele explained how important it is to both her and her clients to do well at these shows.
“This is our life and this is our community,” she described. “We are all about dressage. I love the sport, and my clients are dedicated to this area and supporting the shows.” Degele also adds that they all ride their best in Custom Saddles, including herself. “Every saddle in my barn, right now, is a Custom Saddle,” she smiled. “I absolutely love them! I think they’re great for the horses’ back and they’re also great for the rider. I’ve had all my clients buy these new saddles.”
Custom Saddlery MVR awards are designed to recognize a rider or trainer who brings something extra to the competition arena, be it outstanding scores, successful clients, a winning attitude, or an interesting backstory. Custom has recognized a number of MVRs as various shows on the Florida dressage circuit, and awarded the MVR at the 2013 Nations Cup CDI with a new Custom saddle. Custom Saddlery is an active supporter of the sport of dressage, and was named the official saddle of the 2013 Intercollegiate Dressage Association. Custom is also endorsed by a host of international riders, including Olympians Steffen Peters and Tina Konyot.
For more information on Custom, visit their website at http://mysaddle.com/en