Lexington, KY - July 29, 2010 - Dressage competition continued today on day two of the 2010 Adequan FEI North American Junior & Young Rider Championships presented by Gotham North.
In the Main Stadium at the Kentucky Horse Park, FEI Young Riders went on a quest for the Gold in the Platinum Performance/USDF Dressage Championship Individual Test, while three-day competitors kicked off the USEA Eventing Championship in the Park's dressage complex.
Cloud cover obliterated the sun, but the Young Riders were still able to shine as 35 horse-and-rider pairs vied for superiority in the Individual Dressage test. But it was Jhesika Wells representing the U.S. Region 5/6 combined and the 20-year-old Dutch gelding Intrepid who captured the Gold with a clean and impressive score of 70.000.
The initial rounds in today's class yielded relatively low scores from judges, but following the lunch break, the competitive heat got turned up as did the numbers. The top four scores came from the final four rounds.
"Intepid was super today," said Wells, a resident of Washington State who also won Gold in yesterday's team event. "He did everything I asked, just like yesterday, and he was just the best."
Intrepid bested his top score from yesterday (69.263), but Wells admits she had a hint of what was to come. "What I had in warm-up was just great today-so I tried to go with that. He just worked so hard for me."
Wells and Intrepid have been partners in competition only since November, but the two have long held a special bond. "I was actually his groom, so I knew him. [Owner] Lindsey Anderson offered to let me ride him in a clinic, and that's how I started riding him. He's a once-in-a-lifetime horse."
Taking the Silver medal was Megan Lane, representing Canada/Ontario, and the nine-year-old Dutch mare, Caravella. The pair was also Silver medalist in the Team competition, and finished up today with a score of 68.947.
"This was a personal best," noted Lane. "She was totally focused with a ton of energy-it was surreal."
And earning the Bronze medal was Jaimie Holland, also representing Canada/Ontario, aboard the 12-year-old Westphalian mare, Fleurina. "This was a huge improvement from last year, so I could not have asked for more," said Holland. "She just loves it here."
Meanwhile at the beginning of eventing competition, across the complex in the Individual Young Rider dressage phase, Anisa Tracy and Tigger VIII found themselves the best of the 18 pairs, landing at the top of the leader board with only 45.4 penalty points.
Close on their heels going into Friday's cross-country leg is Kelly Pugh aboard Copycat Chloe with 51.9 penalty points and Devon Brown on Dynamic Image, also with 51.9 penalty points.
The 2010 Adequan FEI North American Junior & Young Rider Championships presented by Gotham North continues tomorrow with Junior Individual Dressage and Junior Event Dressage, as well as Team competition in USHJA Jumping Championship.
For more information, please visit www.youngriders.org.