Wellington, FL — Grand Prix dressage rider Endel Ots has achieved impressive results with a variety of young horses this year. Ots has shown a remarkable ability to turn young horses into champions— most notably five-year-old Hanoverian gelding Lucky Strike, six-year-old Oldenburg gelding Samhitas, and six-year-old Oldenburg mare Rosenschön. Last year, Ots won the Developing Grand Prix Championships with Donatus— and his new horses seem ready to ride down the same path.
Ots, passionate about working with young horses, noticed the potential in each of these and immediately got to work. Now, the 29-year-old Ots rides into the summer months with some of the highest scoring young horses in the U.S.
“These horses are confident, and love their work,” he commented. “They’re really centered in their minds, and all enjoy the show ring. It’s like they have been doing this forever.”
Considering Ots has had the ride on Samhitas— a German-bred Oldenburg (Sir Donnerhall I- Heidebluete, Abanos)— for little more than a year, he has achieved unprecedented success with the gelding. Samhitas, owned by Canadians Gary and Jeannie Vander Ploeg of Pine Ridge Farm, has earned the current highest qualifying score in the U.S for the FEI World Breeding Dressage Championships for Young Horses in Verden. Ots and the gelding notched an 85.600 percent in the FEI 6-year-old Young Horse Final Test on April 25 at the Shoofly Farm CDI3* and Houston Dressage Society Spring Classic I and II in Katy, Texas.
“With a year of good solid work I thought it would be fun to set our sights on the 6-year-old World Championships in Verden,” Ots said. With the talent and hard work of both horse and rider, he is proving to be correct.
Ots has been riding Lucky Strike, a horse he discovered in Belgium, for about a year and a half. The pair scored 87.00 percent in the final test required to qualify for the FEI World Breeding Dressage Championships for Young Horses, making Lucky Strike the current highest qualified five-year-old in the United States for the World Young Horse Championships. The German-bred Hanoverian (Lord Laurie-Heidi, His Highness) is owned by Endel Ots and his father Max Ots.
Ots’s recent successes don’t stop there. At Oldenburg mare Rosenschön’s (Sir Donnerhall I-Rudelia, Pik Labionicas) very first show, she and Ots earned a whopping 86 percent in the FEI six-year-old test. This earned Rosenschön the title of the highest scoring six-year-old in the country. Ots has only been riding the mare for about six months.
Ots’s strategy for success for all his young horses is to keep showing fun for them. He does not burn them out by doing too many shows, but competes in just enough to keep them always gaining experience. “I focus on keeping everything at a level they can do,” he said. “I keep things easy and ride the test and make changes when I need to, but without making it stressful for them."
He credits Canadian international Grand Prix rider Evi Strasser with much of his recent success with the young horses. “She’s been irreplaceable as a coach at shows, and has been passionate in her help and support,” he said gratefully.
Ots will soon be heading to Europe, planning for even more victories with the promising youngsters. His home base is in Wellington, Florida, at the Palm Beach Equine Sports Complex. To learn more about Endel Ots Dressage trainng, visit www.endelotsdressage.com, email EndelOts@gmail.com, or call (920) 562- 5714.