Spring is on the way and the dressage shows are beginning to migrate northward. Aiken, South Carolina is playing host this weekend to Southern Comfort Dressage. And further north in Ohio there are two dressage competitions this weekend. In Concord Township there is the Lake Erie College Dressage and Majestic Farm March Madness Dressage III is being held in Batavia, Ohio. The West is hosting several competitions this week. In Nevada there is the Las Vegas Dressage Spring Fling I (702-401-8292) and just southward in Tucson, Arizona is the Tucson March Madness. And in California there will be the Denville-Kanani Dressage and the Spring Dressage at Hansen Dam in Lake View Terrace. And lastly, Florida is hosting two competitions this weekend. Al Sol is taking place in Newberry and the ever popular Welcome Back to White Fences II in Loxahatchee.
The Mercury News is one of several newspapers in California that ran a feature this past week on the newest member of The Dressage Foundation’s Century Club. Mary Grace Davidson began her equestrian career at the age of 11 and never turned back. Now in her 80s, she and her husband Clyde still run a boarding and training business in California. Her dressage career includes being a trainer, competitor and judge. She was honored into the Century Club during a recent dressage competition at Yarra Yarra Ranch in Pleasanton. To become a member of the Century Club, a rider must compete with a horse in which the combined age of the rider and horse is 100 or older. Mary Grace wanted to earn the honor with her partner and friend Marquis, who sadly died on Valentine’s Day at the age of 19 in an accident. So, she had to qualify for the Century Club on a borrowed horse. It was Marquis, however, who gave Mary Grace her highest score in Intermediaire I competition at the age of 75. You can read more about this remarkable equestrian Here!
A collegiate equestrian earned a short feature in the Livingston Daily, a regional Gannett newspaper in Michigan, this past week. Sarah Aberasturi is a member of the Michigan State University dressage team and she recently took first place in individual regional competition. That qualified her to represent her region, which includes Michigan, Ohio and Ontario, Canada in the Intercollegiate Dressage Association competition being held May 1 at the Canterbury Equestrian Showplace in Newberry, Florida. Sarah has been a dressage competitor for over ten years. You can read more and see a photo Here!
In New Zealand, the Herald newspaper ran a feature this past week on a para-dressage rider who has become the country’s leading para-equestrian. If Rachel Stock takes a win at the Horse of the Year Show being held in Hastings, she’ll have a perfect record of wins for the current summer season in New Zealand. Her goal is qualifying for the 2012 Paralympics in London and if she does, she’ll be the first New Zealander to do so since Jayne Craike in 2000, according to the Herald. Rachel’s partner in her endeavor is her gelding Donnergrollen. Being a dressage competitor is literally a painful experience for Rachel, 40. She suffers from a degenerative bone disease that makes any activity terribly painful and her bones break easily. She came to dressage from eventing, which she had to give up because of her disability. But she has been unwilling to give up riding completely and has opted to battle through the pain. If she makes it to the Paralympics, her next goal will be the World Equestrian Games in France in 2014. You can read more about this amazing rider Here!
A reminder for those interested in seeing the dressage competition at the 2012 Olympics that the ticket office is now open. The ticket office will be taking orders for the next six weeks and then after that, tickets will be randomly distributed, which means all who sign up for tickets during this six week window will have an equal chance of getting one. To apply for tickets go to www.tickets.london2012.com.