In the Prix St. Georges Open Championship, James Koford of Raleigh, N.C. (qualified in Region 3) and the impressive seven-year-old black Hanoverian stallion Doctor Wendell MF (Don Principe x Stellar Hit MF by Sandro Hit, owned and bred in the U.S. by Maryanna Haymon) earned a top score of 72.982% and were awarded the New Miki Christophersen Perpetual Trophy presented by USDF Region 4.
“I was immensely happy with my ride today. For me, it was a shot at redemption because we went to the Developing Horse National Championships at Lamplight in August, and I just did not have the results I wanted. This was our chance at a second shot and it worked out,” said Koford after the ride. “I am a big fan of this horse and hope to do right by him. Even though he is only seven, he has an amazing talent for pirouettes and his strength is that he has no weaknesses! He is so happy when he goes. I enjoy riding him and the judges obviously enjoy watching him because he does everything with such joy and exuberance.”
Heather Mason of Lebanon, N.J. (Region 8) wrapped up her busy weekend with the Reserve Championship aboard her Hanoverian gelding Romantico SF (Romancero H x Wesermelodie by Wenzel I) with 71.096%. “He was super, unfortunately I missed the last flying change after the extended canter which was costly, but he was really really good. I really like coming here, all my clients had a lot of fun, it’s such a great show.”
Also of note, the lovely Westfalen mare Rocky Lane (Rock Forever by Rica) ridden and owned by Rebecca Knollman of Maineville, Ohio finished fourth in this division and was presented with the Lloyd Landkamer Perpetual Trophy for FEI Highest Scoring Mare (presented by Janet Foy) for their score of 70.044% earned in their winning ride in Friday’s Intermediate I Open Championship.
For added excitement this year, the top-scoring riders in various divisions from each of the Great American/USDF Regional Championships competed on regional teams in the inaugural US Dressage Finals Regions Cup, vying with competitors from across the country for awards and bragging rights for their respective USDF Region in which they qualified to attend the Finals.
Coming out on top after three days of championship competition was Region 3 which also sent 84 competitors to this year’s Finals, the most of the nine USDF Regions. Composed of Kathryn Stoy riding Rapunzel of Hillock at Open First Level, Camilla Van Liew with Dartesch in the Third Level Adult Amateur division, and James Koford aboard Doctor Wendell MF in Open Prix St. Georges, the Region 3 team earned a winning average score of 70.762%. Finishing in second was Region 8 with 70.039%, and Region 2 was third with 69.629%.
More information including final results, photo galleries, and news archives from the 2015 US Dressage Finals presented by Adequan® are available on the official event website www.usdressagefinals.com. Video on-demand from select championship performances is also available on the USEF Network at www.usefnetwork.com. A complete archive of each competition day's results is listed at this direct link.