All posts by Associate Editor

Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010 Day 15 Jumping Championship

Belgium's Philippe Le Jeune was crowned Jumping World Champion following a flawless performance in the Rolex Final Four competition at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, USA tonight.

FLAWLESS LE JEUNE CLAIMS THE JUMPING WORLD CROWN by Louise Parkes

Lexington, 9 October – Belgium’s Philippe Le Jeune won the thrilling Rolex Final Four to claim the Jumping World title at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, USA tonight.  The 50 year old rider was not the favourite going into the competition.  He would have to see off the efforts of the reigning individual Olympic gold medallist Eric Lamaze from Canada, former World and Olympic champion Rodrigo Pessoa from Brazil and the exciting new talent of Abdullah Al Sharbatly from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia who, despite his relative inexperience, scooped silver tonight ahead of Lamaze who took bronze.

But in the end the quiet horsemanship skills of a man whose life is totally devoted to his horses won the day.  It has been said that the best thing you can do on a strange horse is as little as possible, and his ability to allow four of the greatest jumpers in the world to do what they do best, with minimal interference, clinched the supreme accolade.  “I had no difficult moments with any of them,” he said afterwards reflecting on the rides on his rival’s mounts – “I decided to go their way and not to try and make them go my way, and it paid off.”

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Eccles and Looser Score Individual Medals in World Vaulting Championships at WEG

October 9, 2010 – Lexington, KY – Joanne Eccles gave Great Britain its first-ever World Equestrian Games medal in vaulting, as she won gold in the female individual division of the Vaulting World Championships, held as part of the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. Patric Looser of Switzerland bested his friend and teacher, Kai Vorberg of Germany, to win the gold medal in the male individual division.

“I think I’m a little bit stunned,” said Eccles, the 2009 European champion. “I was really pleased with my performance today, but the other girls are so strong, and they all went so well. I think it’s going to take a while for it to sink in.”

Eccles’ composite score over four days of competition was 8.413.

Eccles, 21, has her father, John, as her longeur, and her sister, Hannah, as a coach. Their mother, Jane, also supports the family effort. Eccles vaulted on W.H. Bentley, a 16-year-old French warmblood-Dale pony cross, whom the Eccles family has owned for the past 11 years.

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Exell Stays on Top with Fast Marathon in Driving World Championships at WEG

Photo by Marc Manning

October 9. 2010 – Lexington, KY – Australia’s Boyd Exell drove the day’s third-fastest marathon to maintain the lead he took in the first phase of Driving World Championships at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.  Second-placed IJsbrand Chardon has put the Dutch team in front (273.77), while third-placed Tucker Johnson is leading the U.S. team’s charge for second place (300.92). Sweden is third (311.24).

“Normally on most marathons you’ll have one little something somewhere, but today seemed almost perfect. Even going safe we were still fast, “said Exell, 38. “I wanted to go fast enough to put pressure on Chardon, but not make mistakes. The horses were machines out there; they just really did it on their own.”

Exell, along with teammate Gavin Robson, has put Australia in the team medal hunt too. They’re in fourth, with 311.99 penalties, just behind Sweden. Australia has never won a team medal at the Driving World Championships.

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Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010 Day 15 Four-In-Hand Driving Championship

Title defender IJsbrand Chardon (NED) fought his way back in the marathon. Photo: FEI/Rinaldo de Craen

CHARDON FIGHTS BACK IN THE MARATHON by Cindy Timmer

Title defender IJsbrand Chardon fought like a lion in today’s marathon, which he won ahead of Tomas Eriksson (SWE) and winner of the dressage Boyd Exell (AUS). Chardon had been under a lot of stress before the start of the marathon when he discovered his marathon carriage had been damaged. The Ground Jury allowed him to start last in the marathon to give the four-times World Champion enough time to repair his carriage.

Huge crowds
The marathon was followed by a large number of spectators, who enjoyed watching the 25 international competitors on the eight marathon obstacles, designed by USA’s Richard Nicoll. The temperatures rose to 30 degrees Celsius and all necessary precautions were taken to ensure the welfare of the horses, with plenty of ice, water and misting fans at the halt and finish of the marathon.

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Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010 Day 15 Para Dressage Championships

Angelika Trabert and Ariva-Avanti from Germany took Freestyle Grade 2 gold in the Para Dressage Championship at the WEG today. Photo: FEI/Dirk Caremans.

PEARSON TAKES FREESTYLE GRADE 1B GOLD YET AGAIN, TRABERT CLAIMS GRADE 2 FREESTYLE TITLE  by Louise Parkes

Lexington, 9 October – Great Britain’s Lee Pearson took the Para Dressage Grade 1b Freestyle Championship by storm at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, USA today.  And in Grade 2 it was Germany’s Angelika Trabert who swept to victory with a great ride on her bay mare Ariva-Avanti.

Pearson’s World Championship record is legendary.  He was a double gold medallist in Denmark in 1999, took Team and Individual gold in Moorsele, Belgium in 2003 and team and two individual titles on his home turf in Hartpury, Great Britain in 2007.  This week he has excelled once again with a hat-trick of gold medals, but another new star has also been born.

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2010 Radio Show Episode 123 by SUCCEED – Driving, Vaulting and Land Rovers


We were all over the park today covering driving dressage and vaulting. We have audio clips for you from both and a little fun too! Listen in.

2010 Radio Show Episode 123 by SUCCEED – Show Notes and Links:

  • Hosts: Samantha Clark and Glenn the Geek
  • Location: The International Equestrian Festival in downtown Lexington.
    Recording at 7:00 PM every night. Stop down and join us.
  • Guest: Mike and Jerry McClennan
  • Guest: Joshua Rector‘s mother Shirley Rector.
  • Guest: Rochelle Steabler
  • Guest: Kai Vorberg
  • Guest: Joanne Eccles
  • Guest: British Vaulting Squad
  • Coverage: Follow all the coverage of the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games on the Horse Radio Network.

_________________________________________

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Scott Stewart Wins Historic Fourth WCHR Professional Finals at Capital Challenge

Scott Stewart and Venlo. Photo © Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.

Melissa Feller Keeps Top Spot in ARIAT National Adult Medal Finals

Upper Marlboro, MD – October 8, 2010 – Scott Stewart captured his fourth win tonight in the WCHR Professional Finals, presented by the John R. Ingram Fund. Stewart persevered through four rounds against the five other best hunter riders in the nation to set the record number of wins in the 18-year history of the class. Earlier in the day, Melissa Feller kept the lead through two rounds for victory in the ARIAT National Adult Medal Finals, sponsored by ARIAT International, Inc.

The World Champion Hunter Rider (WCHR) Professional Finals consist of the top six ranked hunter riders in the country in head-to-head competition where they switch horses each round. Six judges at three positions scored the class: 1. Mindy Minetto and Steve Wall, 2. Rob Bielefeld and Randy Mullins, 3. Phillip DeVita and Bob Crandall.

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A New Home for the Freedom Fund Bands

Annie Oakley and Pistol await turnout into their new home.

Dear Friends of our Wild Horses;
A year ago in September the BLM removed the family bands that roamed the Commissary Ridge area in the Custer National Forest, saying they were illegally grazing in this Pryor Mountains area. Their decision to remove ALL the horses in the Forest Service came at the 11th hour when there was no time to mount a protest. Their actions resulted in the removal of four bands led by the stallions Conquistador, Trigger, Bo, and Shane. The bands contained animals like Grumpy Grulla who was 21 years old and Conquistador, the magnificent 19-year-old stallion you may remember from the first Cloud film.

Because of an outpouring of donations from all across the country from generous wild horse lovers like you, the Cloud Foundation was able to adopt and buy the older members of the bands, keeping the families together and providing them with the freedom to roam on a beautiful ranch just north of their home in the Pryor Mountains. This spring three foals were born in Conquistador, Bo and Trigger’s bands. Diablo (Chalupa x Bo) and Diego (Cavelita x Conquistador) were born in April. Lovely Annie Oakley was born in early May to Mae West and Trigger. Our surprise gift arrived in August when Trigger’s mare, Evita, gave birth to little Pistol.

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Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010 Day 14 Vaulting Championships

Great Britain's Joanne Eccles won the Individual Female Technical Test in the Vaulting Championships at the WEG today. Photo: FEI/Kit Houghton.

GERMANY WINS ROUND ONE OF TEAM FREESTYLE, LOOSER AND ECCLES TOP TECHNICAL TESTS by Louise Parkes

Lexington, 8 October – The German team, ably assisted by longeur Alexander Hartl, won the first round of the Freestyle while Great Britain’s Joanne Eccles and Switzerland’s Patrick Looser topped the Technical Tests in the Vaulting Championship at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, USA today.

Germany finished with a score of 7.698 to pin Austria back into second place, and for the host nation there was deep disappointment.  The American team, leading after the Compulsory Test, had to interrupt their Romeo and Juliet themed Freestyle when a movement fell apart. There were no apparent injuries however and they went on to complete their test but had to settle for third in the Freestyle and third overall.

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Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games 2010 Day 14 Para Dressage Championships

Great Britain's Emma Sheardown overcame a major setback to put in a personal best performance and claim Freestyle gold in Para Dressage Grade 1a at the WEG today. Photo: FEI/Kit Houghton.

SHEER GRIT EARNS GOLD FOR SHEARDOWN, BRENNER MAKES IT A DOUBLE by Louise Parkes

Lexington, 8 October – British Para-Dressage star Anne Dunham said on Thursday night, “don’t say I can’t – say I can.  It may be slow and it may be hard, but it’s always worth it in the end.”  Those words rang true this afternoon when, against all the odds, her team-mate Emma Sheardown overcame a nasty accident the previous evening to come out and produce the best performance of her life and clinch the Individual Grade 1a Freestyle title at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, USA.

Once again the British had it all their own way in Grade 1a, but the placings were re-jigged.  Yesterday’s Individual champion Sophie Christiansen had to settle for silver this time around while Dunham took bronze.

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