Walter and Mary Anne McPhail hosted a Benefit Luncheon on Sunday, March 5, at the Palm Beach Dressage Derby CDI 3*/CDIY in Loxahatchee, Florida, in support of the United States Equestrian Team (USET) Foundation and the Foundation’s efforts to send a winning dressage team to the 2006 World Equestrian Games in Aachen, Germany.
“All of us are excited about the World Equestrian Games,” said Mary Anne McPhail. “We all want to help the team get to Aachen. So many people really care and really want to help support the team. It’s very important and we hope we can get a lot of people enthused to help us out in that endeavor.”
PhelpsPhoto®: L-R - Marisol and Patrick Burssens, Mary Anne and Walter McPhail
The sell-out benefit event was held in the Grand Prix Tent at the foot of Ring 1 and hosted 72 people who were seated in two rows of elegantly set tables. Guests enjoyed a gourmet luncheon, exciting half-time entertainment, which included “The PhelpsPhotos.com Lead Line Series” and “The Spanish Horses of Spain” presented by Tom Reid & Medieval Times Dinner Theater, and a spectacular view of the afternoon’s FEI Grand Prix Freestyle.
The musical freestyle competition was a qualifier for the Collecting Gaits Farm/USEF National Grand Prix Championship and a qualifier for the World Equestrian Games (WEG) Selection Trials, which will be held June 15-18 at the USET Foundation headquarters in Gladstone, New Jersey. Germany’s Uwe Mechlem provided expert commentary on the freestyle rides via headsets.
Walter and Mary Anne McPhail and Fair Weather Properties, Inc. are the developers of White Fences Equestrian Estates in Loxahatchee, and they are also the hosts of the three dressage shows in the Derby Series at the Horse Park at White Fences Equestrian Estates. The 2006 Palm Beach Dressage Derby CDI 3*/CDIY was held March 3-5 and hosted 435 horses – the largest number of competitors in the history of the prestigious event.
Mr. and Mrs. McPhail are long-time supporters of the USET Foundation and in 2000 their Horse Park hosted the USET Dressage Final Selection Trials when the trials were re-located due to the West Nile Virus outbreak in New Jersey. Top competitors from around the country converged on this first-rate Florida show grounds in their quest for a berth on the U.S. dressage team headed for the Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.
Guests at the USET Benefit Luncheon enjoyed 15 excellent Grand Prix Freestyles and stood for the playing of the U.S. National Anthem when Leslie Morse and her stallion Tip Top 962 claimed victory.
Representing the USET Foundation at the Benefit Luncheon was Chairman of the Board Frank V. Lloyd and his wife Karen. Dressage team coach Klaus Balkenhol and his wife Judith were also on hand for the festivities. Guests hailed from as far away as California and Brazil and included riders, owners, and generous friends and supporters of the sport.
The USET Foundation Benefit Luncheon guests included Patrick and Marisol Burssens, Oliver Dunford, Sarah Diggin, Judy and Dave Cardella, Joann and Chuck Smith, The Almeida Family from Brazil – Manual, Luiza, Theresa and Thaisa, Chris Ramer, Maria Cecilia Gonzaga, Bill O’Neill, Betsy Rebar Sell, Dr. Patrice Richardson, Carol and Tom Lavell, Glenn and Lynn Cardoso, Erin and Cynthia Wilson, John Iffland, Tami Hoag, Melissa Hogan, David Page, Isabel and Renee Leibler, Guilford Full, David Gribbons, Patsy Albers, Donna Wilson, Mindy Zamora, B.G. Siegfried, Richard Cannon, Nancy Minehart-Orfila, Rick Rockefeller-Silva, Terri Ciotti Gallo, Kerry Morgan, Allyn Schiavone, Marilyn and Preston Langley, and Particia Powers.