The USET Festival of Champions kicked off today with the first leg of the Intermediaire Dressage Championships, the FEI Prix St. Georges, where the top eight placed horses in a 12 horse field scored above 65%.
In the lead, were Jan Ebling and Ann Romney's, Liberte, a beautiful steel gray nine-year-old KWPN Dutch Warmblood, by Flemming, with a 68.050%. Second, with a 67.5% were Susan Dutta and her Hanoverian mare by Westbury, West Side Lady.
The best at this level will be eying a spot on the 2003 Pan American Games, to be held next summer in the Dominican Republic."The Pan American Games provides an exciting opportunity for the talented up and coming horses in our country to experience a world class competition," said Ebling, as he confirmed he and Liberte will be working towards that goal.
Liberte's owner Ann Romney is the wife of 2002 Winter Olympic Games organizer Mitt Romney, who is currently running for Governor of Massachusetts. Together with her husband, they created the inspiring an impressive opening ceremonies for the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City. Another accomplishment , which resulted from Ann's three year Olympic Games commitment, was the Olympic Aid program which raised over 5 million for refugee children. "The refugee camps provide food and medical attention, but there is nothing for them to do. This program introduces sport and activities in the camps." Said Romney, who worked on this with Olympic speed skater, Johan Koos.
While nothing can compare to watching the most successful Olympic Games unfold before her eyes, and being a major part of that accomplishment, for Romney, Dressage is her sport of passion. Training with Ebling for the past three years, she arranged for him to provide a dressage exhibition during the winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City.
Today, Romney had her own medal around her neck, a gold USET award medal presented to Ebling and Liberte.
Stay tuned as DressageDaily is "On the Scene" at the 2002 USET Festival of Champions.
USET FEI Prix St Georges - June 20, 2002
1. Jan Ebling/Liberte/Ann Romney/68.050%
2. Susan Dutta/West Side Lady/Susan and Tim Dutta/67.500%
3. Brooke Doss/Wescott/Ann Doss/66.700
4. Michelle Gibson/Chimon/Elite European Sporthorses/66.500%
5. Kathleen Rain/Lord Glendale/Leigh Cochron/66.200%
6. David Wightman/Garein/Davis Wightman/66.000%
7. Nancy Later/Manster/Susan McCarthy/65.900%
8. Suzanne Dansby-Phelps/Goubergh's Kaspar/Suzanne Dansby-Phelps/65.150%
9. Tracey Lert/Lexus/Tracey Lert/63.750%
10.Susan L. Halasz/Spion/Deborah Carter/63.550%
11. Lesliy Eden/Picasso/Lesley Eden/62.350%
12. Kimberly Deaton-Iwen/Claire McCarthy/56.150%