Omaha, Nebraska - Karen Pavicic led a Canadian sweep of the top two places in the FEI Dressage CDI4* Grand Prix at the fifth annual International Omaha. This is the first time that International Omaha is hosting an International Equestrian Federation (FEI) approved CDI 4* Dressage competition alongside its CSI 3* Jumping competition.
International Omaha is produced by the Omaha Equestrian Foundation (OEF) and is taking place May 5-7 at the CenturyLink Center in Omaha, Nebraska, site of the 2017 Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final and the FEI World Cup™ Dressage Final. Pavicic claimed the win with a brilliant ride on her 14-year-old, Oldenburg gelding that she owns with Jayne Essig. She received a score of 67.800 from the five-judge panel of Janet Foy (USA), Gary Rockwell (USA), Christof Umbach (LUX), Ulrike Nivelle (GER) and Cara Witham (CAN).
"I was really pleased with my horse but not so much with myself," said Pavicic who has represented Canada many times internationally including riding on its team at the 2014 FEI World Equestrian Games in Normandy, France. "I went off course which was a costly mistake, but he maintained his composure throughout and was really great.
"I really think this is a fantastic event," Pavicic continued. "The atmosphere was electric and the venue is outstanding. Omaha is such a friendly, welcoming city and I have no doubt that the World Cup next year is going to be an incredible event!"
Two-time Olympic veteran Jacqueline Brooks completed Canada's sweep of the top two places with a score of 65.120 on D Niro, a 17-year-old, Swedish-bred gelding owned by Mary Brooks and Brookhaven Dressage. Brooks felt that her horse was affected by the large arena and the atmosphere. "He was really scared when he entered the ring," she said. "We spent all winter competing outdoors in Florida and he was definitely affected here tonight. I think he'll be much better tomorrow night but overall he was honest throughout his test tonight despite his nerves."
Finishing third was Katie Poag of John Island, SC with a score of 64.640 seconds on her own Zonnekoning, a 12-year-old, KWPN stallion.
Full results are available at the International Omaha website at www.internationalomaha.com.
Upcoming highlights of International Omaha include the FEI Dressage Grand Prix Freestyle to Music competition on Friday at 4:00 P.M., the Mutual of Omaha Bank Speed Derby on Friday at 7:00 P.M, and the Burlington Capital Group Grand Prix Jumping on Saturday at 7:00 P.M.
In addition to watching the top international horses and riders, spectators are being treated to a variety of entertainment presentations, interactive activities and shopping opportunities in the Lexus Boutique and Expo Area that make the International Omaha a total equestrian experience for all ages and fun for the whole family. There is no admission charge for those attending daytime competition, exhibits, shopping booths and other entertainment, and special exhibitions, music, food, and drink will be featured throughout the day. For information about purchasing tickets or a VIP hospitality package for the evening performances, featuring the Omaha Steaks opening ceremonies followed by the pinnacle evening competitions, visit www.InternationalOmaha.com.
For evening performances, International Omaha tickets are available online through Ticketmaster.com or by calling 1-800-745-3000. Tickets also may be purchased in person at the CenturyLink Center Omaha Box Office.
About the Omaha Equestrian Foundation
The Omaha Equestrian Foundation (OEF) is a certified 501(c)(3) not-for-profit foundation.
The focus of the foundation is to foster and develop international caliber athletes within the equestrian sport as well as supporting and educating the community. Since 2013, The Omaha Equestrian Foundation has donated tickets to local charities and created field trips for over 1,000 elementary school students, veterans, and local military families.
For more information about the Omaha Equestrian Foundation, visit www.OmahaEquestrian.com or call 402-444-1630.
About the FEI World Cup™ Finals
First held in 1986, the FEI World Cup™ Dressage Final features the world's best dressage horses and riders. A total of 31 Finals have been held through 2016, and the United States has won the championship twice - in 2003 (Debbie McDonald with Brentina) and 2009 (Steffen Peters with Ravel). The Final has been held in the U.S. in Los Angeles (1995) and Las Vegas (2005, 2007, 2009, 2015).
Started in 1979, the FEI World Cup™ Jumping Final is an annual international showdown among the world's best show jumping horses and riders. In the 38 Finals held through 2016, Germany (10) and the United States (9) have emerged with the most titles. Previous FEI World Cup™ Jumping Finals held in the United States include Baltimore (1980), Tampa (1989), Del Mar, CA (1992) and Las Vegas (2000, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2015).