San Juan Capistrano, CA. - The world was watching as thousands tuned in to CDP Live's wildly-popular online video streaming service to see two incredibly impressive fields of Grand Prix and Prix St. Georges competitors fight it out for top marks on the first day of competition at California Dreaming Productions' Capistrano Dressage International CDI-W/Y/J/U-25, being held March 19 - 22 in beautiful San Juan Capistrano, Cal. But emerging as the big winner of the day was Olympian and long-time U.S. Dressage Team member Steffen Peters, who earned both first and second place in the CDI Grand Prix test aboard Legolas 92 and superstar-in-the-making Rosemunde with scores of 76.780% and 74.960%, respectively.
"One score above 74% in a day is great, but to have two in one day is just wonderful," said Peters. "Both horses did a clean test and a wonderful job. It's an awesome feeling." Despite some fleeting moments of tension, ultimately Four Winds Farm's veteran Westfalen gelding Legolas 92 (Laomedon x Fuerstin by Florestan II) maintained his composure to earn the winning score over talented young stablemate Rosamunde (Rheinlander mare [Rock Forever x First Lady by Fidermark]). "Legolas is still a firecracker, kind of like the Energizer bunny," laughed Peters. "But the overall feeling today was great, there was just a little bit of anticipation before the transition to passage. He used to be quite tight but he's gotten so much better, and even though it takes great concentration to ride him, he's a great challenge."
With an invitation to next month's Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage Final on the line going into Sunday's Grand Prix Freestyle, Peters refuse to let the pressure of performance affect him. "I don't really think about it," he said. "The pressure is always there, and it's not the first time I've had to deal with it. Over the years, you learn to stick with your routine and what works. So actually I'm looking forward to the freestyle on Sunday."
Complete results are available on the California Dreaming Productions website. Live video streaming of CDI classes with expert commentary by FEI judge Axel Steiner resumes at 8:00am PT on CDP Live, californiadreamingproductions.com/live-stream-test/.
Formed by a partnership between long-time show organizer Glenda McElroy of Burbank, CA and Grand Prix riders and trainers David and Alisa Wilson of Chino Hills, CA, the goal of California Dreaming Productions is to bring a fresh face to international-level dressage competition on the West Coast. Additional show information is available on the new California Dreaming Productions website, as well as regular updates posted on Facebook. For more information, contact Glenda McElroy, firstname.lastname@example.org, or David and Alisa Wilson, email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.