Category Archives: Equinium Sports Mktg.

Interagro Celebrates Dressage Success at 2018 Adequan Global Dressage Festival

Zepelim Interagro and Pia Aragao. Photo courtesy of Interagro Lusitanos.

Wellington, FL (May 19, 2018) – Dressage and the Interagro Lusitano sporthorse are naturally synergistic; the intelligent, elegant, and athletic equines pair seamlessly with this sport of power and precision. For over four decades, Interagro has been breeding exceptional dressage horses and in the first few months of 2018, their most recent group of competitive Lusitanos stepped into the dressage arenas of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival to continue that legacy.

Journeying to Wellington, Florida from Interagro’s stud and training center in Itapira, Sao Paulo, Brazil, two stallions owned and currently standing at Interagro blazed a trail of dressage excellence. Zepelim Interagro (Quinarius Interagro x Ordenada Interagro) kicked off his 2018 show season with a 68.315% and a win in the AGDF 7 FEI Grand Prix. Ridden and trained by Pia Aragao, this impressive 16.3h gray stallion exuded a presence of power and poise in his exceptional collected work and elastic extensions. Winning his first US Grand Prix was a fantastic start, and Zepelim kept up the momentum through March in the Grand Prix and made his debut CDI performances in the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Freestyle during week 10.

As the yin to Zepelim’s yang, the 8-year-old Fellini Interagro (Nirvana Interagro x Batina Interagro) stepped out in his first US competition with increasingly spectacular efforts in the Prix St. Georges and Intermediaire I. Capped by a high score of 69.559% in the FEI Prix St. Georges during week 10, the impressive black stallion’s successful US show debut builds upon a decorated Brazilian career in the Young Horse divisions. Also ridden and trained by Pia Aragao, Fellini epitomizes the athleticism, beauty, and movement that have become the hallmarks of the Interagro sporthorse.

“Both Fellini and Zepelim went above and beyond during our Florida winter show season,” said Aragao. “Zepelim made amazing strides in the Grand Prix and continues to improve, while Fellini proved himself to be a consummate competitor and to possess all of the ability and presence of his sire, Nirvana.” Both horses returned to Brazil in early April.

Another Interagro stallion, Belisario Interagro, was also taking home two blue ribbons and other top finishes in the Grand Prix at the 2018 Global Dressage Festival. Owned, trained, and ridden by Kate Poulin of Fair Weather Farm in Chagrin Falls, Ohio, Belisario made his Grand Prix debut in the fall of 2017. Belisario (Quixote Interagro x Urzelina Interagro) was sold to Poulin as a 5-year-old during the 2010 Lusitano Collection International Horse Auction, hosted by Interagro in the US. Under the tutelage of her mother, USEF “S” Judge Sharon Poulin, and US Olympian Debbie MacDonald, Kate Poulin and Belisario posted personal best scores in the national Grand Prix during the 2018 Florida dressage season. “Belisario loves his work and is always so focused,” said Poulin. “This combined with his intelligence and natural talent for piaffe and passage has made him a fantastic Grand Prix horse. He is a true partner, and riding him as given me deeper insight into what dressage is really all about.”

While Interagro’s upper level stallions were taking center stage at the Global Dressage Festival, a number of geldings from the farm’s H Generation were also having success in the dressage arenas of North America. Tyra Vernon of BREC Dressage in Ocala, Florida rode Hadrian Interagro, Hawk Interagro, and Horacio Interagro to many blue ribbons and high point awards. Hawk’s first time out at 3rd Level he was High Point Champion at the Sweetheart Cup in Orlando; Hadrian competed at 3rd and 4th Level scoring 68.3% in his first show at 4th Level. This athletic grey gelding also won a 3rd Level class at the Global Dressage Festival in March. Hawk and Hadrian are now qualified for Regional Championships this fall in Atlanta, and their third Interagro brother, Horacio, recently made his First Level debut with BREC trainer Kerryann Schade, winning the class with 70.8% and putting in one score towards qualifying for Championships. Vernon purchased all three Interagro horses from Brazil with the guidance of US Sales Representative Peter van Borst, and has utilized the Interagro support system not only for pre-purchase exams, shipping, and logistics, but also for training advice and information once the horses arrive in the US. Vernon and her three 7-year-old geldings also attend numerous clinics with world class judges and 5* international judges like Janet Foy, Gary Rockwell, and Henk van Bergen on a regular basis: “All of our clinicians have had so many positive things to say about our Lusitanos and feel they all show great talent and promise as FEI competitors,” said Vernon. “We have started playing with piaffe and passage with Hadrian and Hawk and we are so excited with the quality they show for the Grand Prix. Henk said the only problem with Hadrian is that he wasn’t his! I’m very thankful to Peter and all of Interagro’s team for the opportunity to have such amazing horses. I continue to look forward to working closely with Interagro to supply myself, my trainers at BREC Dressage, and our clients with these top quality Lusitanos!”

Hobbit Interagro (Bungo Interagro x Radiosa MAC), a 7-year-old gray stallion owned by Haras dos Cavaleiros, competed at AGDF with rider and trainer Tiago Ernesto. This athletic stallion was noted for a spectacular canter, as well as his overall beauty and character, and has begun his career as a breeding stallion with Haras dos Cavaleiros. With every score over 70% and a high score of 73% in all of the Second Level Tests at Global, Ernesto stated that he was very happy with the horse’s performance overall and is looking forward to both Hobbit’s future and the future of the stallion’s offspring: “With Hobbit, his character is the most exceptional thing,” said Tiago. “But in addition, he has fantastic gaits, movement, and athletic ability, which makes him a superb competitor as well as sire. We take it day by day with him, but his desire to learn and please the rider combined with his elasticity and talent for collection make him a great Grand Prix prospect.”

For more information on Interagro Lusitanos, Interagro’s horses for sale, or the Lusitano bloodlines, visit Interagro’s website at www.lusitano-interagro.com.

Media contact:
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
Holly Johnson
holly@equinium.com
www.equinium.com
+1 954 205 7992

Kat Fuqua Soars to Top National Pony and Hunter Rankings

Kat Fuqua and RS Levitation (Photo courtesy of S. Hellner)

Wellington, FL (April 17, 2018) – Pony power has always been Kat Fuqua’s forte, and 2018 marks a milestone in her show career as she elevates to Junior Hunter success in addition to multiple pony and hunter titles. From her hometown of Atlanta to the sunny hunter rings of Wellington, Fuqua’s consistent top placings aboard her equine partners between January and March of 2018 have set the tone for another successful year of competition. Going into a busy spring and summer show season, her excellence in the arena has earned some of the top USEF, USHJA, and circuit pony and hunter rankings in the nation. But while this 10-year-old’s love for her horses translates to ribbons in the ring, for Fuqua the pleasure is all in just being in the saddle.

Fuqua began her year at the Atlanta Winter Classic, spending three weeks enjoying her hometown competition before heading to jump with the top hunter riders in her divisions during WEF 6’s World Hunter Week. Her small pony, Goldhill’s Arresting Charm, and medium pony, Finesse RF, both swept all three weeks in Georgia, topping out as Champions of their divisions. Fuqua’s large pony, Chic in Time, was champion twice, as was her Junior Hunter RS Levitation in both of the two weeks he was shown in the Under 15 Small Junior Hunters. After a week of traveling and a brief respite from showing, Fuqua and horses hit the ground running during World Hunter Week.

Finesse RF immediately showcased some of the savvy she’s named for right out of the gate, finishing as Reserve Champion during Hunter Week and was also Reserve Champion in the $5,000 USHJA National Pony Derby in March. Goldhill’s Arresting Charm finished third in the first round of the Pony Derby behind Finesse. Thrilled with both of the pony’s performances, Fuqua noted that Finesse, known around the barn as Ladybug, shone in their first ever competition together at WEF.

Fuqua’s final Winter Equestrian Festival placings with her ponies include 5th place in the Overall Circuit rankings with Chic In Time in addition to Champion and Reserve placings, and 4th overall Circuit Pony Rider despite only 7 weeks of competition during WEF 2018. During those seven weeks, Fuqua and her ponies were consistently placed in the ribbons, with the competitive classes consisting of 20-30 of the top pony riders in the nation.

In the USEF’s national rankings, as of April 13, Fuqua and her ponies rank as follows: 5th in the Small Pony Hunter with Goldhill’s Arresting Charm, 2nd in the Medium Pony Hunter with Finesse RF, and 2nd in the Large Pony Hunter with Chic In Time. Fuqua won the USEF 2017 Champion Leading Pony Hunter Owner and is currently ranked second in the USEF’s 2018 Pony Hunter Owner standings as of April 13. She is also ranked as the top Pony Hunter Derby rider in the nation by the USHJA, and stands as the leading rider of the division since its inception in 2017. In the USHJA’s National Pony Hunter Derby Horse rankings, Finesse RF is currently sitting in second and Goldhill’s Arresting Charm is sixth. Finesse and Chic are also ranked second and fifth in the Grand Champion Pony division, which accounts for all pony sizes.

While the ponies have always been a passion in Fuqua’s life, it is her success with her new Junior Hunter mount, RS Levitation, that is setting the foundation and capturing her imagination for future equestrian endeavors. After just three months showing in 3’6″ Junior Hunters, the pair made their Wellington debut during WEF 6. Just a year ago, in February 2017, Fuqua and High Noon 3E were Champion multiple times in the Children’s, and finished as the Circuit Champion 11 & Under at WEF 2017. With barely a year elapsed between her Children’s championships and Junior Hunter debut, Fuqua’s poise and passion in the arena continues to prove exceptional as she climbs the divisions. She and Levitation, known as Jett around the barn, floated elegantly over the spectacular hunter obstacles in Palm Beach International Equestrian Center’s International Arena. Having competed in her first WEF competition ever four seasons ago at 6 years old, Fuqua noted that much of her 2018 success in the Junior Hunters is based on Jett: “He is one of a kind because he takes care of me and gives me confidence,” said Fuqua. “He jumps big and wants to win.” They currently stand tenth overall in the USEF’s Small Junior Hunter Under 15 ranking as of April 13.

The USHJA also currently ranks Fuqua and all four of her actively competing equines #1 in the Zone 4 Horse of the Year standings for the Junior Hunters, Pony Hunter Small, Pony Hunter Medium, and Pony Hunter Large divisions. In the USHJA Zone 4 Pony Hunter Derby standings, Fuqua is on top with Finesse RF and third with Goldhill’s Arresting Charm.

Kat Fuqua’s passion for horses is reflected not only in her highly decorated Pony Hunter and Junior Hunter rider results, but also in the joy and dedication she shows each time she swings into the saddle. Based out of Atlanta, Georgia and under the guidance of trainer Michael Newman of Aubrey Hill Farm in Pensacola, Florida, every aspect of Fuqua’s riding, training, and show career reflects a unique ardor for equines and horse sport. She balances her equestrian lifestyle with attendance as a full time 4th grade student and takes pride in developing alongside her horses.

For more information on Kat Fuqua (pronounced foo-quay), visit her website at www.KatFuqua.com.

Media contact:
PR and Marketing
Holly Johnson
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
www.equinium.com
holly@equinium.com
+1 954 205 7992

Ilan Bluman and Firebridge Knock Out Turf Tour Finale Grand Prix

Ilan Bluman and Firebridge. Photo courtesy of Equinium/The Ridge at Wellington.

Wellington, FL (March 6, 2018) – As the sun set on the final day of show jumping at Polo West, The Ridge wrapped up its final week of Friday Night Lights and Turf Tour shows before heading back to their spring, summer, and fall base in Asbury, New Jersey. The Turf Tour went out with a bang and a parade of top show jumpers vying for the finale’s top prize, the $15,000 1.40m Turf Tour Grand Prix. A field of 24 were greeted by clear blue skies and springy green turf on the 1.40m course; the inviting conditions and welcoming design proved to favor Ilan Bluman and Kaprice as they swept across the grass to clinch victory. Later that evening, Friday Night Lights’ competition proved to be another milestone for its riders, as the high score High and Low Classic winners were presented with spectacular prizes from Prestige Italia, La Mundial Boots, and River Run Farm.

The Ridge Turf Tour seems to be a family affair for many of its riders, including the Bluman family. Daniel Bluman made quite an impression this year on the Turf Tour, winning multiple Grand Prix and 1.30m classes. Ilan stepped into the arena on the final Friday to prove he wasn’t going to let his brother steal all the limelight. Firebridge, an 8-year-old mare by Diablo, made the most of the exceptional footing, utilizing the traction and suppleness of the turf course to speed her gallops and tighten her turns. “The course today was perfect for a horse like mine,” said Bluman. “It had an excellent triple, steady lines coming from tight turns, and the jump off was ideally suited for a compact horse. Firebridge’s strength is her agility, and we were able to make the most of it today. We really enjoy this atmosphere; we are here every Friday for the Grand Prix, and also show quite frequently in the Rising Star on Wednesdays during season. We have always believed in the value of this show. It’s a great place to get to know a horse.” Bluman and Firebridge cruised to victory on a jump-off time of 39.998. Second went to Kim Farlinger aboard Alan Chester’s Concelo (40.255), and third went to Maarten Huygen’s Goldbreaker and Keven Mealiff (42.920).

As an Olympic and Southeast Asian Games veteran, Marie Antoinette (Toni) Leviste and her 9-year-old mare Loribrie have quite a few competitions under their belt. During Friday’s Finale Grand Prix, the pair made their debut performance at the 1.40m level, and in 2017 made their US show debut in The Ridge’s 1.30m Rising Star Classic. “I always make a point to have our debut shows be at The Ridge,” said Leviste, who hails originally from Manila. “The relaxed atmosphere and world class feel, along with the friendly staff, make it an ideal place to take your horse to the next level without undue stress. We’ve been all over the world, from the US to Poland to Slovakia to Malaysia for the Southeast Asian Games, and she has grown so much and we are really beginning to believe in each other. Loribrie’s strongest attribute is her fighting spirit; even when I’m ready to give in, she’s the one who wants to keep going.”

Leviste, who rides for the Philippines, also has ties to The Ridge going back to the 2000 Sydney Olympics: “I was with Nona [Garson] in Sydney and remember her amazing horse Rhythmical. That makes it all the more special to come here and show at The Ridge, and I want to say thank you to her and her team for being so welcoming and supportive from the very beginning.”

Kelly McInerney Rides Away with High Point Prestige Italia Saddle

The final Friday Night Lights proved to be a bustling evening for its .90m and 1.10m Child/Adult and Open riders, with a chilly Florida dusk descending into nightfall under the stadium lights at the Polo West arena. As a double points event, all of its competitors were in the running for a number of top prizes from the event’s sponsors, as well as the chance to take home ribbons in multiple classes including a speed round, jump-off, and Low and High Classics.

Hayley Chambers, a highly decorated Friday Night Lights competitor, once again took the blue ribbon in the .90m Low Child Adult Classic; the win cemented her supremacy in the division, and as the High Point Low Classic winner, Chambers was presented with a certificate for a custom fit pair of tall boots from LA Mundial.

As the jumps were raised and darkness fell in its entirety, the 1.10m High Child/Adult Classic, speed round, and jump-off were underway with an eager audience of diners at the Polo Bar & Grill. The Finale week’s High Classic was taken by Whitney Lind of Bethseda, Maryland aboard Whish LLC’s Wanant. The pair, who are familiar with jumping under the lights from previous indoor shows, put in a brisk double clear effort to win the class. “He’s an adult jumper superstar,” said Lind, who rides out of ESP Farm and purchased Wanant from England as a 12-year-old. “I knew after the first jump that he was ready to rock and roll. He knows what he’s doing and I’m just along for the ride. It was a great experience in a unique atmosphere, and a great way to end my season in Florida. I love Nona and George and showing at their events!”

But it was the High Classic’s reserve champion rider and overall high point winner, Kelly McInerney, who stole the show under the lights. She and Dinletto RK placed so well during the Friday evening series at Polo West their combined points could not be beat. US Olympian and co-founder of The Ridge Nona Garson presented McInerney and her trainer Sarah Scheiring with a brand new saddle from Prestige Italia in recognition of her spectacular efforts in the High Child Adult Classics. McInerney, who is from Chester, New Jersey and rides out of Chester Riding Club, stated: “This is for sure the biggest thing I’ve ever won; I felt like my horse was with me every time I saw a distance, and showing under the lights was a great experience for both of us.” Both of the Friday Night Lights’ Finale High and Low Classic winners were also presented with saddlepads from Success Equestrian.

“Our goal with Friday Night Lights was to really make something special and unique for Child/Adult riders,” said Garson. “Riders at this level are the backbone of our sport and we need to support them. Prizes like this and opportunities to show, ride, and experience a new level of horsemanship help to provide a foundation of education and allow them to flourish.”

For a full schedule of events hosted by The Ridge at Wellington, visit www.TheRidgeFarm.com.

Media contact:
PR and Marketing
Holly Johnson
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
www.equinium.com
holly@equinium.com
+1 954 205 7992

Hesslink Continues Winning Ways; Stovel Takes USHJA National Hunter Derby

Photo: Geoffrey Hesslink and Cadoretto.

West Palm Beach, FL (January 30, 2018) – It was a day for the chromey chestnuts during the second week of Hunter Derbies on the Palm Beach Series, as Geoffrey Hesslink and Cadoretto once again topped The Ridge’s $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby, and Patricia Stovel and Pancaspe rode to victory in the $5,000 USHJA National Hunter Derby. With both classes held on Friday, January 26 at Jim Brandon Equestrian Center, a healthy group of spectators and trainers gathered to watch both the afternoon National class and evening International class, while full divisions of hunters, jumpers, and equitation classes ran from Wednesday – Sunday at Jim Brandon.

Hesslink continued to build on his already impressive hunter resume with a second win in The Ridge’s International Hunter Derby. Under the guidance of trainer Andre Dignelli of Heritage farm, he and Cadoretto, known around the barn as Cad, topped both rounds of the night class, successfully tackling all of the questions asked by course designer Archer Bailey. “He is just so honest,” said Hesslink. “Anything I ask of him, he does it; any mistake I make, he covers for me. Going into the handy I began to doubt my plan, which was to take an ambitious line to one of the larger options. But that is his better lead and as usual he did it without hesitation and was absolutely perfect. Surprisingly, I think he was even better this time than the last time [at The Ridge].”

As for the next steps, Hesslink says he has no intention of stopping now. “We will probably do the Derby next week in the International arena at WEF, and the one at Deerridge as well,” he stated. “I really love The Ridge and their shows because of the facility and the quality of the courses and atmosphere. It feels really special to show under the lights, and I think Cad definitely enjoys and jumps better in this atmosphere. Of course, we will plan to come back for the last of The Ridge’s Hunter Derbies in mid-March.”

Earlier in the day, a mare that could be Cadoretto’s stunt double worked the $5,000 USHJA National Derby, coming out on top with Patty Stovel in the irons. The 10-year-old American-bred Hanoverian is fresh off her first shows with Stovel in the 3’3″ Pre Green Hunters in November, where she also won a Derby in Ohio and was champion in Ocala. Owned by Virginia Bartholomew, Pancaspe’s somewhat green status didn’t slow her down a bit over the National course.

“She hasn’t done too many horse shows,” said Stovel of the chestnut mare, “but she has always been just so straightforward and easy, even as a pre green horse. After our good results in Ohio and Ocala, we decided to venture down to Wellington for a few shows and these are a perfect match, both for her and so her owner could be on hand to see her progress. I didn’t want to be super handy with her, as she is still pre green, but we just focused on turning and always looking towards the next jump.”

As a veteran of the hunter jumper ring, Stovel’s history with The Ridge stretches back to founder Nona Garson’s days with Olympic mount Rhythmical, and she also frequents their spring, summer, and fall shows in New Jersey. “I’ve been coming to The Ridge for years, and they’re always so friendly and great to work with,” Stovel said. “The course was beautiful, and the warm ups and covered were lovely to ride in. I couldn’t be happier with our choice to come or Pancaspe’s performance, and we are looking forward to attending more of The Ridge’s shows!”

For a full schedule of events hosted by The Ridge at Wellington, visit www.TheRidgeFarm.com.

Media contact:
PR and Marketing
Holly Johnson
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
www.equinium.com
holly@equinium.com
+1 954 205 7992

2017 Marks the Rise of the Interagro Lusitano

Incrivel Interagro. Photo courtesy of Interagro Lusitanos.

Itapira, SP, Brazil (January 4, 2018) – From the tropical countryside of Brazil to the mountains of Germany, the Interagro Lusitano sporthorse continues to make its mark in the emerging discipline of working equitation. The stud and training center has now developed hundreds of nationally and internationally successful Lusitanos in working equitation, as well as dressage, driving, endurance, and show jumping. From Working Equitation World Cup champions to US and European exports, Interagro’s status as a breeder and developer of victorious working equitation Lusitanos has reached that of a world power.

As the most influential bloodline in working equitation, Interagro horses have racked up wins on four continents in the demanding discipline, which was born from the athleticism, suppleness, and partnership required of working horses for daily tasks around the farm and features three core phases: dressage, obstacles, and speed. Most notable among Interagro’s resume of performance horses is Xaveco Interagro, who with France’s Claire Moucadel at the reins was victorious in the 2016 Brazilian Working Equitation World Cup. Xaveco and Moucadel went on to many working equitation successes, including being awarded the Haras Cup during October 2017’s Haras dos Cavaleiros event, the premier working equitation competition in North America.

Antiochus Interagro also made headlines during the summer of 2017 as a top competitor on the German working equitation scene, while youngsters from Interagro’s I Generation made their debut at the national level in Brazil in October. Incrivel and Inquisidor Interagro, ridden by Edmar Martins Brito and Alexandre Souza, placed first and second in the Novice A division. Another working equitation talent, Empreitero Interagro, with Edmar Brito at the reins, won the Preliminary division. Over the past two years, Interagro’s placings at various levels from Novice to Master have been too many to list, with generations of Interagro Lusitanos converging at various shows and completing alongside each other.

In April of 2017, during the first phase of the Brazilian Working Equitation Championships, horses owned both by Interagro and clients from the farm’s spectacular national Yearling Auctions over the past 17 years navigated the courses and tests. Two young horses, Hanibal Interagro and Hector Interagro, displayed exceptional talent at their show debut; Hector has since been sold to the US while Hanibal was successfully revised as a stallion and added to Interagro’s breeding program. At the time of Hector’s international sale, he was the rankings leader in the 2017 Brazilian Working Equitation Ranking. Also during the first phase of the ranking, Feitor Interagro and Divisadero Interagro advanced to the Preliminary and Master levels, kicking off advanced working equitation careers. Heliodoro Interagro, owned by Alexandre Siqueira and sold during the 13th Annual Interagro Yearling Auction in 2012, was also an active competitor, along with Porfirio Interagro, stunning and competitive at 21 years young, representing the eldest of Interagro’s horses competing at the working equitation championships with his amateur rider Suely Moraes. Porfirio was sold as a 2-year-old in 1997.

As one of the fastest growing equestrian market segments, working equitation is traditionally Portuguese, as is the Lusitano breed, which is the most popular mount for the discipline. On Interagro’s 1,300 acre stud and training center, the concepts of working equitation are used as much outside the competition arena as within, during the daily tasks of managing its 3,000+ horses and the property itself. As such its Lusitanos are naturally inclined towards the discipline, which includes dressage, obstacles, speed, and cow events.

With over 40 years of experience breeding, training, and exporting Lusitanos, Interagro’s mission is to preserve the exceptional bloodlines and qualities of the breed while showcasing their talent, beauty, and intelligence, especially in the FEI and sport horse disciplines. Established in 1975 by Dr. Paulo Gavião Gonzaga, Interagro’s initial vision was to preserve and restore the original foundational Lusitano bloodlines and lineages, many of which were in danger of extinction following the Portuguese Revolution of 1974. Through meticulous breeding, exceptional care, and world-class training, the Interagro Lusitanos of today continue that legacy as they compete across four continents.

For more information on Interagro Lusitanos, Interagro’s horses for sale, or the Lusitano bloodlines, visit Interagro’s website at www.lusitano-interagro.com. To organize a trip to Brazil or for any questions regarding sales or the logistics of importing horses to the US, contact their US Sales Representative, Peter van Borst at 817 368 9447.

Media contact:
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
Holly Johnson
holly@equinium.com
www.equinium.com
+1 954 205 7992

Zenanta and Amy Speck-Kern Post Career-Best Prix St. Georges Score at White Fences Polar Express

Loxahatchee, FL (December 24, 2017) – A balmy December for Excel Dressage was highlighted by career high scores of 70.132% and 69.3% in the Open Prix St. Georges class during the White Fences Polar Express dressage show, held December 16 & 17 in Loxahatchee, Florida. Zenanta, a KWPN mare (Krack C x Ferro) owned by WBS Group, broke the 70% barrier after just a handful of shows at the FEI level. Ridden and trained by Excel Dressage’s founder Amy Speck-Kern, the flashy mare has been steadily improving her consistency and presence in the dressage arena since her FEI debut.

The busy Polar Express show, which no doubt served as a warm up for Wellington’s bustling winter season, hosted large classes and a competitive atmosphere for Zenanta and other students of Excel Dressage. Speck-Kern’s training program with Z, as she is known around the barn, is based on using familiarity with both her surroundings and the training principles to establish relaxation. Once the relaxation is achieved, boundaries are pushed to gently bring the mare to a higher degree of collection and power within the program without undue stress. And strict adherence to these principles, as well as regular training sessions with US Olympian Ali Brock, has yielded impressive results: Zenanta was awarded an 8.5 for her entry halt, 7.5s for both canter pirouettes, and 8s on her trot half-passes.

“Zenanta has continued to develop consistency and confidence in the show ring,” said Speck-Kern. “She knows her job, and by building that confidence she is able to demonstrate her athleticism, balance, and impulsion. Ali Brock has been instrumental in helping me define the steps in our routine and figure out where and when to ask for more. I’m also extremely grateful to her owners, the WBS Group, and our team of sponsors for giving us the support to reach for our goals and continue to break our own records!”

For more information on Amy Speck-Kern, Excel Dressage, or its services, visit www.ExcelDressage.com or call 414 550 1176.

Media contact:
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
Holly Johnson
holly@equinium.com
+1 954 205 7992
www.equinium.com

Brazil to Germany: Antiochus Interagro Takes Working Equitation Talent to Europe

Germany (October 19, 2017) – Interagro’s Lusitano sport horses are no strangers to international travel; as the largest breeder and exporter of Lusitanos in the world, Interagro’s skilled dressage, driving, jumping, and even yearling Lusitanos have boarded transcontinental flights to the US, Canada, Australia, and Europe. In the past few months, one Interagro gelding has been making waves in Germany’s fast growing competitive working equitation scene, where he is bringing a bit of Brazilian agility and athleticism to the historically horse centered continent.

Ridden by Pedro Ribeiro, Antiochus Interagro debuted at the Master Class level in Austria this past September, after excelling quickly through the lower levels of the sport in what is his first year of competition. Ribeiro, who is a Portuguese native and proficient in dressage, working equitation, and the highest levels of garrocha riding, notes the horse’s speed and balance, despite being barefoot, and an exceptionally willing attitude as contributors to his success. In his first season of showing, Antiochus has consistently placed in the top of the class, with great aptitude for the speed and cow events, the latter of which are more common in Europe than Brazil and the US.

Antiochus’ story began in Itapira, Brazil, where he was hand selected to be featured at the 2011 Lusitano Collection International Horse Auction held in Wellington, Florida. Lisa Cosgrove purchased him from Germany after a nine month search for talented 6-year-olds, and shipped him to Europe to continue his training. A royally bred, pure Veiga Lusitano, Antiochus Interagro (Ofensor (MV) x Opera II (MV)) has begun his competitive working equitation career, and has showcased that natural talent, balance, and a willing temperament Interagro is known for.

“In addition to his talent, speed, and agility, Antiochus is an easy going and fun to ride horse who is just as comfortable working at peak performance with Pedro as he is going for a trail ride with me,” said Cosgrove. “In the dressage and obstacles he is obedient and relaxed, but can switch seamlessly to the high octane power of the speed or cow class which is extremely important in the discipline. We are excited to see how far he can go!”

As one of the explosively growing equestrian market segments, working equitation is traditionally Portuguese, as is the Lusitano breed, which is the preferred mount for the 3- or 4-phase discipline. On Interagro’s 1,300 acre stud and training center, the concepts of working equitation are used as much outside the competition arena as within, during the daily tasks of managing its 3,000+ horses and the property itself. As such its Lusitanos are naturally inclined towards the discipline, which includes dressage, obstacles, speed, and cow events. In 2016, Xaveco Interagro topped Brazil’s inaugural Working Equitation World Cup, and many of Interagro’s horses have gone on to top titles in the US and Brazil. Antiochus Interagro’s success in Europe marks a new milestone for the breed and the sport, as the gelding’s origin and journey to Germany highlights the growing demand for athletic, intelligent, and trainable horses to succeed in sport and working disciplines.

With over 40 years of experience breeding, training, and exporting Lusitanos, Interagro’s mission is to preserve the exceptional bloodlines and qualities of the breed while showcasing their talent, beauty, and intelligence, especially in the FEI and sport horse disciplines. Established in 1975 by Dr. Paulo Gavião Gonzaga, Interagro’s initial vision was to preserve and restore the original foundational Lusitano bloodlines and lineages, many of which were in danger of extinction following the Portuguese Revolution of 1974. Through meticulous breeding, exceptional care, and world-class training, the Interagro Lusitanos of today continue that legacy as they compete across four continents.

For more information on Interagro Lusitanos, Interagro’s horses for sale, or the Lusitano bloodlines, visit Interagro’s website at www.lusitano-interagro.com. To organize a trip to Brazil or for any questions regarding sales or the logistics of importing horses to the US, contact their US Sales Representative, Peter van Borst at 817 368 9447.

Media contact:
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
Holly Johnson
holly@equinium.com
www.equinium.com
+1 954 205 7992

Judging Exams and PSG Win: Successful Summer Continues for Excel Dressage

Amy Speck-Kern and Zenanta on their way to victory in the White Fences Summer Fun II Prix St. Georges. (Photo by Equinium Sports Marketing)

Loxahatchee, FL (July 21, 2017) – Excel Dressage’s Amy Speck-Kern has had a progressive summer, with multiple FEI debut performances and the advancement of her goal to receive her ‘r’ judging license with training in Lexington, Virginia. Just before flying north to undergo the rigorous judging exams, Speck-Kern also slipped in to win the Prix St. Georges at White Fences Summer Fun II, held July 8-9, in Loxahatchee, Florida. Speck-Kern rode Zenanta, a KWPN mare (Krack C x Ferro) owned by WBS Group, to a 68.421% to win the FEI Prix St. George and qualify for regional championships.

Zenanta, debuted at PSG in June of 2017 with scores in the mid-60s. The flashy moving mare, who has been displaying increasing consistency over the past few months, is becoming more and more relaxed in the show arena, allowing Speck-Kern to showcase her incredible shoulder freedom and engaged hind leg. Speck-Kern has struck a balance between off site lessons with Olympian Ali Brock, a carefully evaluated nutritional program, and innovative tack and equipment to bring the sensitive mare to competition success.

“She continues to improve, and especially showed her balance and impulsion in the canter pirouettes, the left of which we were awarded an 8,” said Speck-Kern. “It has been a long journey with this mare as she is spectacularly talented but needed the time to build her confidence, strength, and to put all the pieces in the right place. I couldn’t be happier with her effort and progress this summer.”

Bred in Holland by Annemiek Raaijmakers, Zenanta’s owners, WBS Group, were formed to support Excel Dressage’s equestrian vision and Speck-Kern’s competitive career. WBS represents ‘work before success,’ which is a reflection of Speck-Kern’s journey with Zenanta. Zenanta’s diet was of particular importance to Speck-Kern throughout her training, and she found complete nutrition in Crypto Aero, a wholefood horse feed that keeps Zenanta cleaning her bucket despite the stress of showing or training. Wanting Zenanta to be as comfortable as possible in her tack, Speck-Kern began riding her in the Tota Comfort System noseband, whose innovative design relieves the torque and pressure along the poll, facial nerves, and TMJ, making it a happier option for Zenanta to step into the hand.

Founded in 2010 by Speck-Kern, Excel Dressage offers training, showing, and sales of top caliber dressage horses minutes from Wellington’s equestrian center. After beginning her career with Olympic Bronze Medalist Michael Poulin and “S” Judge Sharon Poulin, Speck-Kern’s naturally quiet and effective riding style and training methods drew a strong client base of competitive amateurs. A successful FEI competitor, in addition to her recent wins and debuts in the Prix St. Georges and Intermediaire I, Speck Kern was ranked top in the nation at the 2016 Markel/USEF National Young Horse Championships aboard Kathryn Hoog’s KWPN mare Gerona, and has developed a base of international adult amateurs that compete through the FEI level. Excel Dressage imports a select number of exceptional sales and show prospects each year, and Speck-Kern is also an equestrian Ambassador for the Kids Cancer Foundation. By providing the local community and afflicted families with therapies, treatments, counseling and support, the Kids Cancer Foundation is reminiscent of the research and protocols that saved Speck-Kern’s life when she was diagnosed with Acute Myleoid Leukemia at 18. With her sights set on eventually obtaining and international judges accreditation, she was also recently accepted into the USEF “r” program, attended the exams in Virginia in July, and continues to develop her string of competition horses and list of clients.

For more information on Amy Speck-Kern, Excel Dressage, or its services, visit www.ExcelDressage.com or call 414 550 1176.

Media contact:
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
Holly Johnson
holly@equinium.com
+1 954 205 7992

Zenanta and Amadeus Debut at Prix St. Georges and Intermediaire II

Amy Speck-Kern and Zenanta (Photos courtesy of Joanna Jodko)

Loxahatchee, FL (June 26, 2017) – Despite the summer storms and Florida’s sweltering heat, two of Excel Dressage’s FEI competitors advanced through the upper ranks of dressage during White Fences Summer Fun I, held June 3-4, 2017 in Loxahatchee. Amy Speck-Kern rode Zenanta (Krack C x Ferro) in the mare’s debut performance at Prix St. Georges, and Amadeus (Flemmingh x Welt Hit II) in his first official attempt at Intermediaire II. Both horses delivered solid initial performances during the rated show, positioning themselves for more success in the FEI divisions.

Zenanta, who is owned by WBS Group, scored 65.1% on Saturday and 65.7% on Sunday, displaying the consistency Speck-Kern was striving for in weekly training sessions with Olympian Ali Brock. The 2004 KWPN mare’s incredible shoulder freedom and engaged hind leg naturally lends her to the FEI levels, but channeling this talent into relaxed power has been the challenge for Speck-Kern. “Because of the sessions at Ali (Brock)’s farm, Zenanta’s entire persona changed. She became much bolder, more confident, and more comfortable in her work, making it much easier to achieve a consistent connection even during the excitement of competitions,” said Speck-Kern. “With Ali’s help and simulating a competition by shipping in for lessons, she was able to progress in leaps and bounds.” Regularly awarded 8s for her half-passes and with exceptional strength to sit in the pirouettes, Zenanta’s newfound confidence ensures more FEI performances in the future.

Speck-Kern’s Saturday morning ride in the Intermediaire II was Amadeus’s first recognized score in the division, and gave them a solid starting point to develop towards a competitive Grand Prix. Brilliant in the piaffe and passage, Amadeus, who was scouted and imported as a 3-year-old by Speck-Kern and Gwen Poulin, also continues to build his confidence in the show ring. Trained to the FEI by Speck-Kern, he also excels in trot and canter extensions, and has a superb walk, for which he received 8s in the extended walk. Speck-Kern was especially pleased with this score as the extended walk comes right after the passage, a challenging transition. “Going from the energy and power needed to produce a good passage to the total relaxation and suppleness of the extended walk can be quite difficult. I was really proud of him because I felt him take a deep breath and start to demonstrate a bit of what he can do,” said Speck-Kern. “Both horses are hot and extremely sensitive, but I am very pleased with them and their effort in this show, and I’m very thankful to my entire team and fantastic sponsors for their support.”

Speck-Kern and Amadeus

Excel Dressage was founded by Speck-Kern in 2010 and offers training, showing, and sales of top caliber dressage horses in Loxahatchee, Florida, just minutes from Wellington’s equestrian center. After beginning her career with Olympic Bronze Medalist Michael Poulin and “S” Judge Sharon Poulin, Speck-Kern’s naturally quiet and effective riding style and training method drew a strong client base of competitive amateurs. A successful FEI competitor, Speck-Kern was ranked top in the nation at the 2016 Markel/USEF National Young Horse Championships aboard the Kathryn Hoog’s KWPN mare Gerona, and has developed a base of international adult amateurs that compete through the FEI level. Excel Dressage imports a select number of exceptional sales and show prospects each year, and Speck-Kern is also an equestrian Ambassador for the Kids’ Cancer Foundation as a way to give back to the research and therapies that saved her life when she was diagnosed with Acute Myleoid Leukemia at 18. With her sights set on eventually obtaining an international judges accreditation, she was recently accepted into the USEF “r” program and continues to develop her string of competition horses.

For more information on Amy Speck-Kern, Excel Dressage, or its services, visit www.ExcelDressage.com or call 414 550 1176.

Media contact:
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
Holly Johnson
holly@equinium.com
+1 954 205 7992

Crypto Aero Rides with Stal Lansink at CSIO5* Rotterdam Nations Cup

Jos Lansink and For Cento.

Limburg, Belgium (June 25, 2017) – The name Jos Lansink has long been synonymous with the upper echelons of the show jumping world. Throughout his career he has enjoyed countless wins, many in the European and World Championship arenas and has competed in six Olympic Games, taking the Team Gold with the Dutch team in Barcelona in 1992. The Dutch native, who now rides for Belgium, started his own stable in 2004 and has been associated with many equine show jumping superstars: and his horses’ performance at the CSIO5* Rotterdam Longines FEI Nations Cup, held June 22-25, 2017, was no exception.

With rider Pieter Clemens at the reins, Horizon De Regor, a chestnut Belgian warmblood gelding by Obourg, turned in the top ride for Team Belgium with one down in the first round and a second round clear. Horizon’s stablemates also put in impressive performances, with For Cento going double clear and Chianti’s Champion having the last fence down in the 1.55m at Rotterdam.

Lansink first took to the saddle at the age of three, and his ascension to international success began with the 1988 Olympic Games, a win in the 1994 World Cup Final, and a Team Bronze Medal at the 2002 World Championships. Exceptional nutrition has always played a major part in his program, and after seeing great results on other horses, Lansink expanded Crypto Aero Plus to be a staple supplement in his stable. He currently has seven on the whole food horse feed and whole horse supplement, including Horizon De Regor, who was also second in last year’s Belgian Championships. “The horses have longer lasting energy and are jumping very consistent,” said Lansink. “They give the same feeling on the last day as they did on the first day. Their coats look fantastic and their legs looks great. Their overall health has improved.”

When asked about any other performance improvements on Crypto Aero, the response from Lansink’s camp was equally positive: “Especially with the horses that used to get a little empty at the end of the course, they are now able to stay focused and consistent through the entire show. The best thing about Crypto Aero Plus for us is that we don’t need to add any other supplements. Everything our horses need is in one product, which makes it very easy. We have not altered anything else with our feed program. The only thing we provide is a salt block. It is a fantastic supplement, and the results speak for themselves!”

From international show jumping to the demands of the modern racehorse, Crypto Aero was designed to help horses live healthier lives and to reach peak performance by offering them only the very best ingredients. Founded in 2014, Crypto Aero Wholefood Horse Feed is the only complete horse feed based on whole foods. Crypto Aero Plus+ acts as a real food supplement for the whole horse. All of Crypto Aero’s products are created with human grade ingredients whenever possible and are non-GMO and gluten, corn, wheat, soy, and molasses free.

For more information on Crypto Aero, visit their website at www.CryptoAero.com or contact them directly at CryptoAero@gmail.com or 561 504 0871.

Interview provided by Denise M. Davis.

Media contact:
Equinium Sports Marketing, LLC
Holly Johnson
holly@equinium.com
+1 954 205 7992