Dressage at Devon attendees were treated to an amazing array of individual breed classes in the world’s largest open Breed Show. From Andulusians to Gypsy Vanners, and Hanoverians to Knabstruppers, each breed had the opportunity to show off its unique qualities. In the Hanoverian – Age 2 and under, Francheska AH (Fielding/SPS Malena), bred and owned by Kate Palmquist, took home the blue. In the 3 year old and older KWPN‐NA class, Toraya (Goodtimes x Lora), bred by J. Boorsma and owned by Iron Spring Farm, Inc., won first place. (Complete results are available at www.dressageatdevon.org). As the evening drew near, the performance division kicked into gear. It started with the USEF Fourth Level Test of Choice in which two former Dressage at Devon volunteers competed.
From Behind the Scenes to In Front of the Crowd
Quite simply, there would be no Dressage at Devon without its hundreds of dedicated volunteers, and Sarah Campbell and Sophie Ghedin, took their commitment to the next level – actually to the fourth level. Outside the CDI barn they were bursting with enthusiasm for their new opportunity to compete in the USEF Fourth Level Test of Choice.
Understandably, they were having a hard time believing they were really here as competitors. Sarah first visited Dressage at Devon as a young spectator when the
show started in 1975. She began volunteering in 1999, serving in roles such as bit check, and ring and area steward. Sophie learned about the volunteer opportunity Dressage at Devon when she moved to Pennsylvania and was thrilled to be able to participate in such a prestigious show. Her first assignment was to handle the trophies, a challenge because there was no procedure in place. ‘Sophie Trophy’, as she was nicknamed, tackled the job with gusto, taking photographs of every trophy and developing a system that is used to this day.
They were inspired by the riders, judges and trainers they came in contact with at Dressage at Devon. “You stand next to people you only see in magazines,” says Sophie. As they became more immersed in the dressage community through their volunteerism, they were encouraged to further develop their own dressage skills. To that end they have both trained with JJ Tate, Scott and Susanne Hassler. Sarah also trains with Sally Lofting.
While Sarah and Sophie think having a professional trainer who believes in you is essential to becoming a better dressage rider, hard work is also vital. They both ride six days a week and engage in cross training, supplementing dressage in the ring with cross country rides that include a few shoulder‐ins and a Piaffe in the middle of a field. Sarah strengthens her core with Pilates and yoga while Sophie opts for Pilates and weight training. After all this, they both agreed that all they hoped to achieve in their test at Devon was their personal best.
FEI and USEF tests rounded out the evening. The FEI Young Horse Test for 6 Year Olds was won by Simply Nymphenburg, ridden by Dr. Cesar Parra and owned by Michael and Sarah Davis, with a score of 80.600.
The 5 year old class was won by Leonardo (Landtinus/Rambala), ridden by Kim Gentry, with a score of 76.200. (Complete results are available at www.dressageatdevon.org).
Friday’s classes will feature FEI Prix St. Georges; the FEI Young Riders
Team Test, the Grand Prix Qualifier for Grand Prix Special and the Grand
Prix Qualifier for Grand Prix Freestyle and much more. Plus the everpopular
Ladies Hat Contest judged by top DJ, John DeBella, the Aussie horseman Guy McLean and the Delaware Valley Combined Training Association’s Quadrille team.
About Dressage at Devon
Dressage at Devon, the largest CDI show in the US and the largest open breed show in the world, combines world‐class international dressage competition and one of the world’s few complete sport horse breed shows with the family fun of an International Fall Festival, featuring food and shopping for all tastes.