Entries Open Sept. 1, 2013 for the Atlanta Youth Dressage Challenge - October 19-20, 2013

Saturday, August 31, 2013
Posted by Betsy LaBelle


Atlanta Youth Dressage Challenge inaugural event - Coming Up! The competition will take place at the Georgia International Horse Park (GIHP) in Conyers, GA, featuring Lendon Grey, Gwen Poulin and several other high performance athletes. This unique competition is for youth under the age of 21. The challenge consists of three elements to create a division, a written test based on a particular reading assignment, a dressage test, and a dressage equitation class. The challenge scores each section worth 100 points apiece for a total of 300 points. The overall highest score wins! CLICK HERE for Prize List and information.
Lendon Gray and Nick Skillen  Photo: Liz Malloy
Lendon Gray and Nick Skillen Photo: Liz Malloy
Nick Skillen (from Atlanta) competed in the 2012 and the 2013 Lendon Youth Dressage Festival in Michigan, winning the high point in the Training Level division. He shared, “The exam this year was decently easy. Last year I had a score of 88, and this year I improved to a 92. The books I read were “40 Fundamentals of English Riding” and “All About Worms.” Both books were quite interesting. These books have helped me make my horsemanship better and I look forward for the next year's batch of books.”

He continued, “The dressage test was one of the best Training Level dressage tests I've ever ridden. I was so lucky to be able to ride a Friesian sale horse and receive a score of 69%. This was probably my highlight of the whole show. I ended up first of my class for the level and received the highpoint score for the Training Level division for the day. The equitation class was a good ride too, except I didn’t hear the announcer. At one point I misunderstood her instruction to another rider and rode across the diagonal leading the entire class the wrong way. I thought I did horrible, but I received a 85% for my equitation class score and received another blue ribbon. The day proved to be a very successful!”

Nick Skillen and Nicholas Fyffe  Photo: Liz Malloy
Nick Skillen and Nicholas Fyffe Photo: Liz Malloy
Listening to the talks and learning from the High Performance Riders, Coaches and Judges:
Nick said, “Lendon taught me that if you get the big opportunities to ride, you have to KNOW that that is what you want to do for your life. She said the effort you put into horseback riding greatly effects what will come out of it."
He continued, "Lorraine Stubs taught me certain tips to help improve a dressage test, which could get you those extra easy two or three points that you need to win. She talked about making your halts as straight and fluent as possible, using your corners, and trying more than expected on the co-efficients can help you win a blue ribbon, which could end up getting you recognized in the future."
He continued, "Nicholas taught me that the best way to go somewhere with horseback riding is to get yourself out there as a groom or assistant, so hopefully your chances of getting offers to ride in big events will increase. He told us his story of working for others and grooming at the Olympics and being approached by the coach directly.”
For more information please go to the prize list: 
Contact Liz Malloy 770-634-4089