Five pairs performed their USEF Young Adult “Brentina Cup” Test to earn the first 50% of their championship score in the USEF Young Adult ‘Brentina Cup’ Dressage National Championship presented by Dressage Today. Twenty-two-year-old Katrin Dagge won the class after earning a score of 64.667% with her mother Birgitt Dagge’s Dream of Love. The Bonita Springs, Fla., native worked through a moment of resistance with the 13-year-old Oldenburg stallion before entering the arena to perform a lovely test. The pair had quality trot work and good changes, showcasing its partnership. “We had a moment before we went in where he threw me a curve ball like he has done a time or two before but I rode him forward and through it,” Dagge explained. “I was really happy with him and really proud of him.”
"Lover,” as he is known in the barn, was imported from Germany as a four-year-old and he and Dagge have come up the levels together. On Thursday they had an impressive performance together in their first year competing at the Grand Prix Level.
Hannah Hewitt (Atlanta, Ga.) rode Tammy Pearson’s 18-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding Lasall to a second-place finish with a score of 61.795%. They put together a solid test with a nice extended trot and one-time changes.
“He was really good; he had some nervous energy but he listened to me,” Hewitt said. “I think our piaffe was better than it has been in the past. He was a very good boy.”
Hewitt has been riding Lasall for three years, having previously ridden in the Junior championships at Gladstone in 2012.
Rachel Chowanec (Columbia, Conn.) and Lendon Gray’s Embrujado XI finished in third place with a score of 61.487%. Chowanec had a couple mistakes in her test, but performed quite well considering the 16-year-old PRE gelding had his tongue over the bit for most of the test. She was happy to be back competing after her longtime partner “Mouse” had some time off and hopes to improve on Saturday, when the championship comes to a close with the competitors riding the FEI Young Adult U-25 Grand Prix Test for the remaining 50% of their score.
Watch the championship divisions unfold with on-demand footage from today and Friday and live streaming on Saturday and Sunday on the USEF Network. Go to http://www.usefnetwork.com/featured/2014usdfoc/.
Find out more information about the event at http://www.usefconnect.com/festival/.
Photos provided by Susan J Stickle - the Official Photographer of The U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions presented by The Dutta Corp