A Hallmark Performance for Diane Creech at the CDI-W Blainville International

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Blainville, Quebec – Inclement weather was the main event on Friday, June 26, the second day of FEI competition at the CDI-W Blainville International Classic Dressage Show held in Blainville, QC. The FEI Young Horse classes were held before the storm broke with Diane Creech of Caistor Centre, ON, showing Doug and Louise Leatherdale’s Hallmark to the best of his ability in the Five-Year-Old Final.

Creech and the black Hannoverian gelding received 8.3, the same mark that they had been given by the international judges one day earlier in preliminary competition. The FEI young horse competition is scored on a scale of one to ten, rather than a percentage, and 8.3 is an exceptional mark. Hallmark’s highest scores were for his walk (8.8), canter (8.5) and general impression (8.5).

“The judges said he had an almost perfect walk, with perfect rhythm and over track,” said owner Louise Leatherdale. Hallmark is sired by the Leatherdale’s stallion, His Highness, who was tragically lost after fracturing a leg in 2007. “Hallmark is a typical ‘Highness’, and sometimes you really see his father when you look at him.”

Diane Creech has international aspirations for the young horse, which she described as having a wonderful character, both playful and intrigued to learn new exercises.

“To train him is a pleasure,” said Creech, who won a Team Silver Medal at the 2007 Pan American Games riding Wiona, also owned by Doug and Louise Leatherdale. “He comes out every day and likes to work.”

Placing second in the Five-Year-Old Final with a score of 7.8 was Neil McIntosh of Ste-Adele, QC, riding Andrea Kierulf’s Oldenburg gelding, Rigaudon Tyme. Andrea Bresee of Uxbridge, ON, placed third with 7.48 on Pericles, a Hannoverian gelding owned by Loretta Flynn. Evi Strasser of Ste-Adele, QC, won the Six-Year-Old Final after earning a score of 7.18 with Renaissance.

A large starting field of 20 horses contested the FEI Intermediaire I with Belinda Trussell of Stouffville, ON, taking top honours on a score of 67.807% riding Laconit. Nova Scotia native Brittany Fraser, now based in Ottawa, ON, came out on top in the Young Riders’ division for the second day in a row riding Ricardos, earning a score of 66.754%. The FEI Junior Individual test was won by Zachary Ball of North Gower, ON, and Karajan, who received a score of 66.316% for their performance. Tanya Strasser-Shostak of Ste-Adele, QC, topped the FEI Pony division for the second day while Allison Lalonde of North Lancaster, ON, and Royal Dalton won the FEI Children’s Individual test.

Saturday evening’s Freestyle Gala will conclude two weeks of international dressage at the Blainville Equestrian Park. In addition to Intermediaire and Grand Prix Freestyle competition, the evening will feature performances by Equine Extremist Tommie Turvey (www.equineextremist.net), as well as the Blainville Pony Club Carousel.

Competition organizer Cara Whitham of Equivents, Inc., anticipates a packed house, both for the Gala dinner and in the general admission seating, which this year is covered and completely protected from the elements. General admission tickets are $20 and spectators will receive a commemorative poster featuring a painting by equine artist Elise Genest.

For more information on the CDI-W Blainville International Classic and Equine Canada National Show, please visit www.equivents.com. Complete scores from the CDI and national shows are available at www.foxvillage.com.

CDI-W Intermediaire I – Final Results

Rider Hometown Horse Score
1. Belinda Trussell Stouffville, ON Laconit 67.807%
2. Julie Watchorn Schomberg, ON Quintesse 67.105%
3. Tom Dvorak Hillsburgh, ON Viva’s Salieri 66.842%
4. William Lee Tubman Dunnville, ON De La Rosa 66.667%
5. Leah Wilson Orangeville, ON Amusant 66.491%
6. Peter Gray Orangeville, ON Collo 5 65.088%

Photo: “Diane Creech and Hallmark won the FEI Five-Year-Old Final on Friday, June 26, at the CDI-W Blainville International Classic in Blainville, QC.”
Photo credit – Cealy Tetley, www.tetleyphoto.com