Chester Weber Wins The Four-In-Hand Dressage Event at Live Oak International 2020
Thursday, March 5, 2020
Chester Weber took home the win on day one of competition at the 30th Live Oak International winning the USEF Advanced Four-in-Hand Combined Driving dressage phase. He currently leads the USEF Advanced Four-in-Hand Combined Driving National Championship, a step in the right direction for a record 17th National title. Jennifer Keeler and her pony Amazing Grace took home top prize in the Pony Single.
Weber, the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) team gold and individual silver medalist, drove his talented team of horses to an impressive dressage score of 35.92.
“I’m pleased with the performance of my horses. We had some wind out there today. My goal was to remain focused and keep them concentrated on the job,” Weber said. “They stay in our stable on the property as this is home for them but when the tournament moves in, it changes the landscape that they are used to seeing. With tents, spectators and many great sponsor advertisements, it is a lot for the horses to take in and they were fantastic.”
In second place in the FEI Four-in-Hand Combined Driving dressage was USA’s Paul Maye with a score of 60.50 and Gerben Steenbeek of Canada finished in third.
Jennifer Keeler took home the win with her pony Amazing Grace in the FEI Single Pony Dressage with a score of 50.61. A step closer to defending her USEF Single Pony Combined Driving National Championship for the third time.
“There is nothing like trotting down centre line at Live Oak International. Grace was a complete professional today and was delightful. She was brave and went for it on some of the movements and she rose to the task. We are here to defend our National Championship. We have won it the last two years, winning this division here at Live Oak International last year” said Jennifer Keeler.
In second place was Rebecca Gutierrez with a score of 56.40.
With a score of 45.84 Suzy Stafford won the FEI Single Horse Dressage with PVF Peace of Mind. “I almost cried at the end halt; my horse previously had some soundness issues” said Suzy. It’s been a long road bringing her back and I didn’t expect to be showing here. I started working her and she felt great. She was ready so we came. I’m completely thrilled.”
Second to Suzy was Jennifer Thompson with a score of 48.79 and in third with a score of 49.79 was Garbriele Grasso with Hendrik. Winning the FEI Pair Horse was Jacob Arnold with a score of 44.72 and the second-place honour went to Robert Burrows with a 62.03. The Pony Pair win went to Katie Whaley with a 56.30 and in second place was USA’s Mary Phelps with a 62.63.
Dressage continues with Intermediate divisions Friday, March 6, ahead of the exciting Marathon phase on Saturday, March 7. Competition concludes with the Cones phase on Sunday, March 10.
This unique event is a must see for spectators. In addition to some of the world’s best riders and drivers, this year Live Oak International will feature special presentations by the Budweiser Clydesdales, the Young Living Essential Oil Percherons and the Paso Finos Horse Association. With an AdventHealth KidsZone, Audi Biergarten, and the Stella Artois Airstream Trailer this year’s event is set to be four days full of live action with something for all to enjoy.
About Live Oak International. What began 30 years ago as a driving event in Ocala, Live Oak International has grown into a world-class equestrian event. Now run by co-Presidents Chester Weber and his sister, Juliet W. Reid, the tournament is the only in the United States to offer both international combined driving and show jumping competition. As Marion County’s largest spectator event, more than 10,000 spectators attend the four-day tournament to watch the exciting competition by athletes from all corners of the world. In addition to the combined driving and show jumping competition, Live Oak International hosts many hospitality opportunities, and flourishing vendor area available to the public. For more information please visit www.liveoakinternational.com
(Top Photo and photo gallery photo credit: Erin Gilmore)