Jessica Howington and Cavalia Conquer Nerves to Win Tops Grand Prix CDI3*

Saturday, December 11, 2021
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Jessica Howington and Cavalia, a 14-year-old KWPN mare by Sir Donnerhall x I.P.S. Gribaldi, won the Grand Prix to Special or Freestyle CDI3* Thursday, December 9, 2021, at the World Equestrian Center, Ocala in Florida, with a score of 69.196%. Pablo Gomez Molina (ESP) and Cristina Danguillecourt’s Ulises de Ymas placed second on a score of 68.304%, while Maria Alejandra Aponte (COL) and Duke De Niro were third with 66.413%.

Howington was excited to ride in the outdoor stadium but did contend with nerves – both Cavalia’s and her own.

Jessica Howington and Cavalia in their winning presentation with judge at C Sarah Geikie and show manager Debra Reinhardt. Photo by
Jessica Howington and Cavalia in their winning presentation with judge at C Sarah Geikie and show manager Debra Reinhardt. Photo by

“The stadium is amazing,” she said, “but she’s not used to this. She’s hasn’t been to any big, huge venues ever, other than Global. There was a little bit of tension, but I was really happy with my ride. It was probably on my part too. I get nervous too. I take a deep breath and try to focus, try to imagine it’s just me and her out there and we’re at home riding and nobody’s watching. It’s hard to do that, but I try.”

Howington worked through any nerves and complimented her horse’s ability to achieve a solid test.

“In the trot work, she really stayed with me the whole time, and I was able to ask questions and she answered them,” she described. “Overall, it gave us a little more energy, which was good. The trot work today was amazing. It was some of the best she’s given me because she really stayed with me, and I was really proud of her for that. In the canter work, we had some mistakes, but there’s always the next day.”

Howington and Cavalia will compete next in the Grand Prix Special CDI3* on Saturday afternoon. The passage to extended trot movements featured in the Special test are Howington’s favorite and a place for Cavalia to show off.

“She has such phenomenal passage when she’s really in it,” said Howington. “Her extended trot is amazing. It’s two of my favorite things on her back to back. We get to do it a lot in the Special, so that’s fun. I’m hopefully going to be working on a freestyle for [winter] season, so I might start switching things up, but we’ll see.”

Final Results: Grand Prix to Freestyle or Special CDI3*

Peter Storr at E score, Yuri Romanov at H score, Sarah Geikie at C score, Maribel Alonso de Quinzanos at M score, Cesar Torrente at B score, Total Score

  1. Cavalia: 2007 KWPN mare by Sir Donnerhall x I.P.S Gribaldi owned by Jessica Howington Jessica Howington (USA): 69.457%, 69.130%, 67.935%, 70.870%, 68.587%, 69.196%
  2. Ulises de Ymas: 2010 PRE gelding by Seni Indio x Superior II owned by Cristina Danguillecourt Pablo Gomez Molina (ESP): 69.130%, 68.696%, 66.957%, 68.370%, 68.370%, 68.304%
  3. Duke De Niro: 2004 British Hanoverian Horse gelding by De Niro 6 x Weltmeyer, owned by Maria Alejandra Aponte Maria Alejandra Aponte (COL): 67.935%, 66.957%, 66.848%, 65.978%, 66.413%, 66.826%
  4. Dinamico: 2010 Oldenburg gelding by Dylano x Clintino, owned by Kevin Kohmann Kevin Kohmann (USA): 67.391%, 64.022%, 68.043%, 65.761%, 67.826%, 66.609%
  5. Mejorano HGF: 2011 Pura Raza Espanola stallion by Grandioso owned by Hampton Green Farm Kerrigan Gluch (USA): 67.717%, 66.087%, 68.043%, 65.652%, 65.543%, 66.609%
  6. WGangster Girl: 2003 American Warmblood mare by Sieger x Inxcess, owned by Sally Seaver Nora Batchelder (USA): 66.196%, 65.870%, 69.022%, 63.370%, 64.348%, 65.761%