Wellington, FL - Para-equestrian dressage competition at the 2013 Adequan Global Dressage Festival WEF Dressage Classic CPEDI3* continued on Saturday with the Grade Ia, Ib, II, III, and IV individual tests. U.S. and Canada equestrians contended for the both overall team and individual accolades. With the 2014 World Equestrian Games approaching, the 2013 calendar year will define itself as a developing year as well as a refining year for accomplished para-dressage riders. After the team tests on the first day of competition, riders took the remarks from the ground jury and applied them on the second day. Ground jury members included Carlos Lopes (POR), Bo Ahman (SWE), and Hanneke Gerritsen(NED).
Top Canadian riders included Lauren Barwick in Grade II scoring a 69.190%, Ashley Gowanlock in Grade Ib, and Jody Schloss for Grade Ia. Ellie Brimmer (USA), from Wayazata, MN, topped Grade III with her own Carino H. Each equestrian’s score increased on the second day including top Grade IV rider Mary Jordan’s scores. Jordan, from the United States, not only raised her percentages but she earned her qualifying scores for the World Equestrian Games on both Sebastian, owned by Deecie Denison, and her own P. Sparrow Socks.
Mary Jordan expressed, “I am thrilled with both of my horses especially Sebastian. He is in an upswing and on each ride I feel more together with him. I adore the horse and he’s so much fun to show. When we enter the ring, I love how his ears perk up. That’s really cool when your horse is having fun at the same time you as a rider are having fun. Lately, we have been working on the simple changes since the Grade IV tests are laden with simple changes. As a rider you want collection, sensitivity, and a true walk in between the change. To accomplish this, we have continued working on getting Sebastian fit and strengthening him in each movement. At Blue Hill Farm, with Jessica Ransehousen, we have worked on the extended trot so he is sitting and using himself correctly, and we have worked on symmetry and angles on certain test movements.”
She continued, “With Clever (P. Sparrow Socks) I couldn’t be prouder of that little horse. Every show she is getting more confident. She was on the backburner when Paxton was being prepared for the 2010 WEG. This year, I am putting some time into her and I am really excited to see how she develops. She’s young, she’s smart, and she’s a great ride. Clever was my only horse who has ever received 10′s on the walk. She has great downward transitions but she is a work in progress. We work a lot on collection, building the connection, straightness, staying centered, and relaxation.”
Jordan was elated by the feeling of having two of her own home-bred horses qualify for two separate World Equestrian Games. She was also proud of what she personally has accomplished. Jordan explained, “This is MS (multiple sclerosis) awareness week and there is a deep level of accomplishment for me this week. I am the 3rd person in my family with MS. When I was growing up my dad was a quadriplegic and I never saw him stand or walk. The fact that I am here during MS week, I drove 2,000 miles to Florida, I rode two horses a day and I qualified two horses for WEG, means so much to me. I couldn’t have done it without my sponsors especially Teva Neuroscience, Deecie (owner of Sebastian), Jessica and Rachel at Blue Hill, and my family who are a part of this journey. I also want to thank Global for everything; The footing, the facility, and the people have been incredible.”
Hope Hand, Chef d’Equipe of the U.S Para-Equestrian Dressage riders added, “I would like to thank the officials, the owners and sponsors of Global Dressage Festival for giving us the opportunity to show here with our developing rider team and our high performance riders. It’s important to have this international experience. This venue is much like Europe because it gives the riders the same atmosphere and excitement. This show will really help us prepare for Normandy. I think this was a great experience especially for the developing riders. Many of them came to Florida and are in the process of trying new horses. Florida is a great place to find the FEI quality horse that is needed for competition. It’s also important for our sponsors to see us showing at facilities of this quality. It will truly benefit us all including our sport, the USPEA organization, USEF, and the whole Para-Equestrian discipline.”
She continued, “I also want to thank the show management team, Lloyd Landkamer, and Mr. Bellissimo for allowing the CPEDI3* to be a part of the Global Dressage Festival.”
Brimmer agreed, “I have enjoyed competing with my horse Carino in the Van Kampen Arena at the Global Dressage Festival. I am thankful to everyone at Global Dressage for putting together a wonderful CPEDI3* event. To compete at a facility that is the quality of Global Dressage is an opportunity we are all grateful for. I look forward to competing at another CPEDI on the Global Dressage show grounds in the future.”
The Canada para-dressage riders have also been thankful for this wonderful show. It is locations like Global where riders like Lauren Barwick can concentrate on the task at hand instead of worrying about logistics or venue changes.
Grade II Paralympian from Canada, Lauren Barwick, and her mare Off To Paris have been working on pulling pieces of her tests out to work on, building from those pieces, and putting them back together. Barwick noted, “I was happy today with my individual test. I was really pleased with my walk pirouettes because that movement has been a big problem. Today the walk pirouettes were there but again we lost a few things that we normally have secured within our test. Like I mentioned before, it’s important to take it all apart so you improve upon certain parts. Then, you piece it all back together. I was overall happy with my horse and she felt more connected to me as a rider. Onward and upward.”
Barwick’s horse Ferdonia 2, ridden by Paralympic Canadian Ashley Gowanlock once again dominated the Grade Ib division. The duo continued to power down centerline achieving a 67.11% in the individual test.
Grade Ia Paralympian from Canada, Jody Schloss navigated Inspector Rebus to another top placing ahead of teammate Robyn Andrews and Fancianna.
Jessica Rhinelander, developing coach for Para-Dressage at Equine Canada commented about Jody Schloss’ training this year,”We stepped back after the Paralympics and took a look at how everything has been going. We made a list and tore everything apart. Then, we tried to build it all back up again to make it even better. Rebus is a very reliable horse and I am happy with how Jody and Rebus are performing.”
Chef d’Equipe for Equine Canada, Andrea Taylor, stepped in for Elizabeth Quigg this week at the Global Dressage Festival. She explained the 2013-2014 plan, “Aside from aiming for France we are keeping these guys looking forward to plan for their next competition. That’s our big focus for these top level riders coming out again. Back at home we are working on discovering the talent. We have three or four para-dressage riders at home that we have our eye on that have good horses already. We are trying to not keep the focus heavy on top but instead we are trying to focus on who is coming up. It’s also hard to find coaches. That is a big hole for us. I get riders who come to me and say who can you train with but they are located across the country. So that’s our plan to plan for WEG, get some coaches, and work with the up and coming riders. As for today, I was really pleased. Everybody upped their game, rode harder and took some risks. I think it paid off and the scores went up for the majority. That is always good when you gamble a little bit and are rewarded.”
On Sunday, Grades Ia, Ib, II, III, and IV para-dressage freestyle tests occur in the Van Kampen Arena beginning at 11:00 a.m. Sunday. The competition will conclude with an awards ceremony unmounted where the team placings and individual placings will be awarded.
FEI Para Team Grade IV
583, Jordan, Mary R., USA, Sebastian 66.071%
585, Lawson, Madison, CAN, McGuire 64.960%
580, Poole, Lynne, CAN, Vasco E 64.524%
584, Jordan, Mary R., USA, P Sparrow Socks 60.595%
579, Poole, Lynne, CAN, Frisbee 59.008%
FEI Para Grade III Team
1. 578, Brimmer, Eleanor, USA, Carino H 58.740%
FEI Para Team Grade 1A
1. 575, Schloss, Jody, CAN, Inspector Rebus 63.913%
2. 577, Andrews, Robyn, CAN, Fancianna 63.116%
FEI Para Equestrian Team 1B
1. 587, Gowanlock, Ashley, CAN, Ferdonia 2, 67.11%
2. 582, Oakleaf, Laurietta, USA, Niekele fan Busenitz, 64.080%
3. 581, Collier, Sydney, USA, Wentworth-Re-Evaluation of Classification
FEI Para Team Grade II
1. 588, Barwick, Lauren, CAN, Off To Paris , 69.190%
For questions about the 2013-2014 Para-Equestrian Dressage season please contact the USEF High Performance Director of the Para-Equestrian Discipline Laureen K. Johnson at (908) 326 – 1155 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
For more questions about Para-Equestrian Dressage please contact Hope Hand at Hope@uspea.org or (610) 356-6481.