DressageDaily On the Scene - Dressage at Devon 2008
The 34th Annual Dressage at Devon Horse Show presented by Horseworld Ltd. and DressageClinic.com, opened today under blue skies with a full-to-capacity roster of competitors. The focus was on the youngsters with Breed Show classes for yearlings, fillies and colts.
Hilltop Farm was in the limelight all evening, beginning with Chiquita HTF. The charming little chestnut filly made history when she won the first ever Foal Championship in U.S. The Foal Championship, introduced this year at Dressage at Devon, has long been a tradition in German and with some other breed registries in Europe and the Canadian Sport Horse Association. Dressage at Devon, however, is the first horse show in the United States to offer a Foal Championship and the award was sponsored by Hassler Dressage.
PHOTO CREDIT: Hoof Print Images
Chiquita HTF is by Contucci out of Hilltop Cha Cha and as the evening progressed she went on to earn the Reserve Championship in the Filly division as well the AG/USDF Breeder’s Championship for Fillies. Another Hilltop filly, Rhodora HTF won the Filly Championship, the Young Horse Championship and the AG/USDF Breeder’s Championship for Fillies. The bay yearling filly is by Royal Prince out of Con Dia, who was the 2005 Grand Champion at Dressage at Devon. Both horses are registered American Hanoverian Society.
Reserve in the Foal Championship went to Iron Spring Farm’s Dorado ISF, a chestnut Dutch colt by UB40 out of Toscane.
“I am so thrilled,” said Hilltop Owner Jane MacElree. “And to be the first Foal Champion in the country is even more special.” MacElree said that Chiquita has a wonderful mother and a wonderful father, “and I have the best team at my farm. They make it all happen.” Hilltop Farm Breeding Manager Natalie DeBerardinis is pleased that the show gave the foals a chance to compete against their peers. As for Chiquita, she says, “Cha Cha is a very special FEI mare, and this is her first foal. Her sire is also the sire of BW Calista, the 2006 Four-Year Old Champion, and Cabana Boy, the 2007 and 2008 Five and Six-Year Old Champions.” Chiquita was also the top-scoring filly at the Hanoverian inspection in July and, points out DeBerardinis, has been a very well-behaved girl despite the fact that her trip to Dressage at Devon was her first off of the farm.
The Foal Championship was initially proposed by William Solyntjes, an “S” Dressage judge and “R” Sport Horse Breeding Judge, and member of the USDF Sport Horse Committee. “Dressage at Devon was sort of a test for this class, and the response was huge. It has sparked a whole new interest in bringing out and showing foals that we hope will catch on around the country.” Of the winner, Chiquita, he says, “She is one who could hold her own against the more mature horses. She has really, really good conformation, natural suppleness in her back, a well set neck and lots of confidence.”
The Young Horse Championship was given to Rascaletta CR, a Rheinland Phalz-Saar filly yearling out of Rascalino by La Rose owned by Melanie Pai.
Tuesday evening also saw the awarding of the Great American/United States Dressage Federation Breeders Championships for Colts and Fillies. Where Hilltop Farm ruled with the Fillies, Iron Spring Farm, winner of the class in 2007 with Bien Sir ISF, again ruled in the Colts arena, with their Beaumont ISF taking the Championship and Dorado ISF taking the Reserve Championship.
Day two of the Breed Show will focus on more mature horses including stallions and mares, concluding with the Grand Championship. Day three, the final day of the Breed Show features 31 individual breeds. Thursday is also the first day of the Performance Show, with the USEF Dressage Test for Four-Year-Old Horses, introduced to North America at Dressage at Devon in 2005, as well as the FEI Dressage Tests for Five and Six-Year Olds. The Performance Show continues through Sunday highlighted by four Grand Prix classes and all but a handful of classes at the FEI level.
Dressage at Devon takes place on the Devon Horse Show Grounds in Devon, PA., September 23rd through 28th and benefits Thorncroft Therapeutic Horseback Riding Inc. Complete results and more information can be found at www.dressageatdevon.org.