Dressage News Notes - Olympic Dressage is Here!

Steffen Peters and Ravel compete tomorrow in Day 2 of the Grand Prix. (Photo: Mary Phelps for PhelpsPhotos.com)
Steffen Peters and Ravel compete tomorrow in Day 2 of the Grand Prix. (Photo: Mary Phelps for PhelpsPhotos.com)

Dressage has kicked off at the 2012 Olympic Games! With all the horses successful in the jog, competition bagan today with the first 25 combinations competing in the Grand Prix. Day 2 begins tomorrow with American Tina Konyot first to go - start time 11:00 am local time! Carl Hester is excited by their chance to medal for the first time in Olympic dressage and happy to be in contention instead of "one of the numbers". Adrienne Lyle, a Cherokee Nation of Oklahomacitizen, is set to ride in her first Olympics on August 3rd - from humble beginnings to the Olympics! American PRE breeder Kim Boyer's stallion Grandioso will be in the Olympics representing Spain. Dressage's newest Super Fan, Stephen Colbert, decided to not only cheer for Raflaca but to actually try dressage - see the video of his "lesson" with Michael Barisone - hilarious! Congratulations goes out to Germany who won both team gold in eventing and the individual gold as well!

A very busy weekend is ahead for dressage riders across the country! The north will have the Dressage at Stockade I and II in Glenville, NY, the Fall Breed & Dressage Show @ Maplewood Warmbloods in Middletown, NY, the The Children of the Americas Dressage Invitational in Concord, MA and the Dressage at the Bucks County Horse Park IV in Revere, PA. In the mid-west we have the Dressage at Foxton Farm I and II in Romney, IN, the Fields & Fences August Dressage Fest in Gurnee, IL and the Bara Trac II Dressage and Bara Trac II Too in Mason City, IA. In middle America we have the Dressage in the Rockies I, II and III in Parker, CO, the Cheyenne Dressage & Eventing Club Open Dressage in Cheyenne, WY and the Powderhouse Dressage Explosion in Missoula, MT. To the west coast we go with several competitions starting in California with the Dressage at Mission Pacific in Somis, the Yarra Yarra Dressage August I and II in Pleasanton, CA. Other shows on the west coast is the Summervale Dressage Festival I and II in Roy, WA, and the Dressage at Lake Oswego Hunt in Lake Oswego, OR. Alaska will host the ADA Biggest Event Ever in Anchorage, AK.

Well it is finally here! Dressage!! The first "test" for the dressage horses was the jog that was held in the evening after the show jumping (eventing) and awards cermony in the main arena. This particular jog proved uneventful unlike the 2012 World Cup Finals jog when Parzival failed to pass the jog. All dressage horses, including Parzival passed the inspection. Read more about the jog here!

Dressage starts tomorrow August 2, 2012 at 11:00 local time. You can check here to see the indivdual schedule for dressage and the team schedule!

To say Carl Hester is excited about Great Britain's status at the London Olympic Games would maybe be an understatement! Britain has never medaled in dressage and in previous games Carl puts it best - "I've been in previous Olympics when we were expected to compete and just be part of the numbers. To actually do it this way around is, of course, so much more exciting." It has been quite a transformation and the powerhouse team of Hester, Charlotte Dujardin and Laura Bechtolsheimer it is indeed a strong possibilty to earn the top spot! Read more on Carl's thoughts here!

The Cherokee Nation is proud of the people that are representing them in the Olympic Games. One of those people just happens to be in the dressage competition and that young lady is Adrienne Lyle! Lyle is a Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma citizen that had a humble beginning on a small cattle farm in Washington. A avid rider that started with Pony Club eventing and eventually switched to dressage which led her to Debbie McDonald. Check out the rest of how Adrienne has risen to the top of her game. Good luck Adrienne!!

Hampton Green Farm's PRE stallion Grandioso has been called up to join the Spanish Olympic team after the withdrawal of Beatriz Ferrer-Salat's Delgado. Jose Daniel Martin Dockx and Grandioso were the traveling alternates and now that they are part of the regular team, Ferrer-Salat's Fabrege will become the alternate. Congratulations Kim! Check out more here!

Dressage's newest Super Fan, Stephen Colbert, may be sitting on the edge of his seat waiting to wave his Red "Dressage #1" foam finger when competition begins on Thursday morning in London, however, he is not just content to sit on the sidelines...seems he decided to give it a try himself! Colbert recently visited Michael Barisone's Long Valley, NJ farm to take a "lesson" on Conchita and try to earn a shot at Michael's Tiara (yes, I did say Tiara). Check out the hilarious video and I must say Michael was a great sport to take this on! (There are several videos about Olympic dressag at Colbert Nation)

The Olympic Equestrian Competition began with eventing and Germany was the first to strike equestrian gold and it was a double strike! Eventing's World and European champion proved unbeatable earning German Eventing Team gold as well as the individual honor! Great Britain took home the silver with Queen Elizabeth II's grandaughter Zara Phillips as art of the team in front of the home crowd. New Zealand took bronze with team leader Mark Todd. Read more about the teams and more ups and downs of the competition here!