Top Performances Marks First Derby Day

The first day of competition at the 2005 Palm Beach Dressage Derby CDI was marked by some top performances from our country's top riders. However, not only the professionals showed their worth in the ring, several distinguished adult amateurs, who tested their riding skills in the white sands at White Fences' Equestrian Estates, reigned as well.

In the main ring, the CDI Prix St Georges was won by Michelle Gibson aboard Elite European Sporthorses' owned Lex Barker. Gibson and Lex Barker (by Longchamp) rode a very distinctive, powerful trot tour with lovely half passes and suspended extended trots. She scored the winning mark of 70.55%.Canadian Ashley Holzer and Pop Art ranked second with 70.100%, followed by an ever consistent Michael Shondel on his tower of power Wallaby (by Werther). Shondel scored 69.1000% and left Yvonne Losos de Muniz on the Belgian warmblood branded Inatana Las Marismas (68.400%). Mimi Bloch and Prince Charming tied fourth with Losos de Muniz.

In the CDI Intermediaire II, Dr Cesar Parra reigned supreme aboard his Zweibrucken licensed stallion Leonberg (by Lonely Boy xx). Parra's Leonberg showed remarkable improvement since last year. "Leo's" trot work is much more active and forward and the horse is keeping his rhythm better in the piaffe and passage. Canadian Jacqueline Brooks and her bay Gran Gesto ranked second with 66.927%.

Young rider Emily Andon received the top score in the CDI Young Riders team test. Andon and Wendolin got 63.156%.

Elizabeth Hotchkiss and Rivale H won the Open Prix St Georges in ring 3 with 70.000%, Emily Gershberg and Pancratius won the Open PSG in ring 4 with 70.750%

Arlene Page and her Hanoverian gelding Wild One (by Wanderer) are getting ready for the Grand Prix tour. In the open Intermediaire II they received a winning 67.317% and referred Carol Lavell on Much Ado to second place (67.073%).

There were plenty of magical 70% scores ridden during the first day at the Palm Beach Dressage Derby. The high score of the day was achieved by Bonnie Maxon on Wilson, who got 75.000% for the training level test 1 ride. Linda Todenhagen and Apollo came close to the high score with her 74.444% earning third level test 1 ride.

text and photos by Astrid Appels for Dressagedaily

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