80% Score Earns Brianna Zwilling the First Level Open Freestyle Championship Title

Tuesday, November 12, 2019
Posted by Yellow Horse Marketing for the US Dressage Finals



One of the most talked-about classes of the day came on Sunday afternoon in the Alltech Arena as 25 horses and riders fought it out in the First Level Open Freestyle Championship. Ultimately it would take a score of more than 70% to even make it into the top ten, but it was a whopping score of 80.111% that gave the title to Brianna Zwilling of Wentzville, Mo. (Region 4) with Sally Miller’s nine-year-old KWPN mare For Dea Bella (Don Schufro x A Royal Diamond MC by Royal Diamond, bred in the U.S. by Wendy Sherlock).

“It is beyond words. To earn a score like that in this kind of atmosphere and from three top judges, it was a dream come true,” said Zwilling after the win. “I love doing freestyles, so her owner and I worked a lot on choreography that would be creative and different, with music that suited her. She’s a really elastic and balanced horse so we wanted to come up with something that would show off her skills. She came to me as a green five-year-old and this is her third time at Finals, but she’s super grown-up this year and has really come into her own.”

Also posting an impressive score of 77.667% was Jenna Upchurch of Chesterfield, Mo. (Region 4), thereby claiming her second Reserve Championship title of the week aboard her own six-year-old Oldenburg gelding Dante Divino (Dante Weltino x Force Majeure by Furst Romancier). The score was a personal best for Upchurch, who created the successful freestyle herself. “My horse was actually pretty nervous about the Alltech Arena when we went in, but I put my leg on and he followed me through it, and I was really proud of him and we ended up with a really nice flow to our test,” she explained.

Watch archived streaming videos of Championship classes on the USEF Network HERE. Championship competition resumes Sunday – follow the action through updates on the USDF Facebook page and the US Dressage Finals website, as well as watch live online streaming on the USEF Network. To learn more about the US Dressage Finals presented by Adequan®, download competition information, review day sheets and results, and read daily news releases, visit the official event website at www.usdressagefinals.com.