Del Mar, CA - For the third consecutive year Kim Keenan Stordahl and Keenan Productions hosted the Para-Equestrian athletes at the 2012 Rancho Valencia Dressage Affaire CPEDI3*. The Del Mar Horse Park in Del Mar, CA created a perfect backdrop March 8-11 for the Para-Equestrians. From the arrival of the horses to the awards ceremony, the United States Para-Equestrian Association (USPEA) was delighted and grateful for another top-notch horse show. Prior to arrival of the Para-Equestrians, multiple horses were selected for riders who could not bring their own horses to California. Rebecca Cook of B & B Training Stables in Menifee, CA worked tirelessly to connect owners with riders before the March 8 jog.
The USPEA would like to thank Rebecca for her efforts and energy and for providing multiple equestrians with quality horse connections.
As always, Kim Keenan Stordahl and her team at Keenan Productions made sure the 2012 Rancho Valencia Dressage Affaire ran continuously without any interruptions. Hope Hand, President of the USPEA noted, "Kim and her staff were remarkable as always. From the show office to the in-gate everyone was courteous, professional, and delightful to work with. If there was a question that needed answered in a hurry, it was taken care of. Another successful show at a beautiful facility in Southern California."
The USPEA would like to thank horse owners Violet Jen, Patrick and Diane Truxillo, Donna Richardson, Alis Carbone, Terry Waechter, and Mette Rosencrantz. With the support of these owners many Para-Equestrian athletes were able to obtain their qualifying scores at the Dressage Affaire for the 2012 Paralympics.
Obtaining scores would not have been possible without Keenan Productions and multiple sponsors. A big "thank-you" goes to Custom Saddlery who sponsored the entire CPEDI3. Custom Saddlery sponsored all first place prizes and donated the High Point Prize of a Custom Advantage saddle to the overall winner of the CPEDI3* who was Canadian Lynne Poole. Lastly, the Para-Equestrians are grateful to the "Dressage Collaborative" and Janet Balmuth who supported the Para-Equestrians as a Platinum Sponsor.
The USPEA would also like to thank the judges, officials, organizers, and DevonWood Competition Services who made the show run seamlessly.
Outside the show ring two USEF/FEI clinics were conducted as part of education and licensing for Para-Equestrian judges and stewards. Thanks to the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) and Charles Walker, Director of Education at USEF, stewards and judges were able to obtain their education at a three-star Para-Equestrian competition. Course Directors for the Steward Course were Chris Porterfield(GBR) and Sandy Rafferty(USA) and course directors at the Judges course were Hanneke Gerritsen(NED) and Sue Curry Shaffer (USA).
As the Dressage Affaire ended, Para-Equestrians took one extra day to attend a clinic given by Mette Rosencrantz. Each rider was given 45 minutes with Mette allowing a large amount of time to work on short-term and long-term goals. With only three months until the 2012 London ParalympicSelection Trials Mette gave insight on what types ofgoals an athlete should start to focus on as a major competition approaches. The USPEA was appreciative of the attention Mette gave each rider and they were grateful for the support Mette gave to the Para-Equestrian discipline.
With only a few months left until the 2012 London Paralympics Para-Equestrians will be making their way to Katy, TX for the Houston Dressage Society CPEDI3*. The Houston CPEDI3* is the last individual qualifier held in the United States prior to the London Paralympics.
Photo Credits: All Photographs taken at the 2012 Rancho Valencia Dressage Affaire CPEDI3* in Del Mar, CA at Del Mar Horse Park. Photo © 2012 Lindsay Y McCall