Category Archives: USEF

52 Weeks in the Pursuit of Excellence

With every eye on the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, 2010 was the Year of the Horse in the United States as the world arrived on our doorstep in Lexington, KY, for 16 days of competition, demonstration and fun. It took years of planning and didn’t kick off until the end of the ninth month of the year.

Here is how 2010 unfolded before, during and after the Equestrian Event that stopped the American Equestrian community in its tracks. Anyone who makes a life with horses knows it’s not only about the few days a year when the world is watching – it is about every day of every year.

January: 2010 began with honoring the champions from the previous year at the 2010 USEF Annual Meeting. Dressage superstar Steffen Peters repeated as Equestrian of the Year. It was a monumental task to get him from a horse show in California to Louisville, but it was all worth it when he was there, in person, to accept his Dressage award. The night before, his beloved horse, Ravel, was honored as the Farnam/Platform USEF Horse of the Year after storming through 2009 winning on both sides of this country (including the Rolex/FEI World Cup Final) and sweeping the CHIO Aachen in Germany – a first for an American combination. Owner Akiko Yamazaki was on hand to collect the award honoring America’s champion of 2009. Find the details here: http://www.usef.org/_IFrames/newsdisplay/viewPR.aspx?id=5264&star=true and http://www.usef.org/_IFrames/newsdisplay/viewPR.aspx?id=5265&star=true. There would be even bigger plans for this pair in 2010.

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USEF Network Will Broadcast George H. Morris Horsemastership Training Session

Lexington, KY – The United States Equestrian Federation will be showcasing one of the greatest opportunities for young jumping riders to kick off the 2011 USEF Network broadcast schedule.

The Fifth Annual George H. Morris Horsemastership Training Session, presented by the USEF in 2011, will take place January 4-8, 2011 at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL. This exclusive opportunity is offered to 12 of the nation’s best rising stars, and they will spend four days learning from the U.S. Show Jumping Chef d’Equipe George Morris and several other legends of the sport.

The morning riding sessions will be available for the first time on the USEFNetwork.com, the same free online resource that provided wall-to-wall coverage for the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.

Please join the USEF and take advantage of this opportunity to learn remotely from some of the best at: www.USEFNetwork.com.

For more information, and the complete schedule, please visit: http://www.usef.org/documents/disciplines/jumper/AuditorSchedule.pdf.

Kathryn Clapp Named USEF SmartPak Adult Amateur Hunter Leading Rider for 2010

Kathryn Clapp and Donnerkind. Photo by Al Cook.

Lexington, KY – The United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) is proud to announce that the SmartPak Adult Amateur Hunter Leading Rider for 2010 is Kathryn Clapp of Charlottesville, VA. Clapp earned the honor aboard her equine partner Donnerkind, a 16.1-hand dark brown Hannoverian owned by Thomas Bishop’s The Barracks Farm also in Charlotteville.

Based on accumulative points during the 2010 competition year, the SmartPak Adult Amateur Hunter Ranking List, the award comes with a prize from the USEF and SmartPak. Clapp’s accumulation of 1,000 points earned her the prize by a wide margin.

Clapp, 24, said, “This past year has been one of the best opportunities of my life. He was a great horse and a lot of fun, and I want to thank all the people that helped me get there.”

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Kelsey Kimbler Named 2010 USEF Junior Equestrian of the Year

2010 Junior Equestrian, Kelsey Kimbler. Photo by Paschal Karl.

Lexington, KY – The United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) is pleased to announce Kelsey Kimbler as the 2010 Junior Equestrian of the Year. This highest of honor offered to a junior equestrian comes on the heels of another big honor Kelsey earned earlier this month – the 2010 USEF Youth Sportsman’s Award, sponsored by Breyer Animal Creations. This puts Kelsey in elite company, as one of only a handful of junior equestrians to accomplish both feats in the same year.

“My sister Kirsten won this award in 2007 and I’ve always looked up to her. When she won, I decided ‘That’s my next goal!'” Kimbler related. “It has been a whirlwind experience.”

The 17-year-old high school senior has shown an unwavering commitment to her sport. As a young child, she started in the show ring with walk-trot. Soon after, she continued her riding with endurance and has never looked back. Kimbler has won the AERC Junior National Hundred Mile Award twice in its four years of existence. This award is given to the junior rider who completes the most 100-mile rides in one year. Kimbler holds the record for being the only junior to complete five such endurance rides in one year. She also has represented the AHA Youth Association as her region’s delegate and through involvement in 4-H events with her Arabians. She was nominated by both the Arabian Horse Association (AHA) and the American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC).

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Saddlebred Showman Don Harris Honored with 2010 USEF Lifetime Achievement Award

Don Harris and CH Imperator. Photo by Sargent/ASHA Archive.

Lexington, KY – In the American Saddlebred world, few names rise to a level of royalty in quite the way that the name of Don Harris has. During more than five decades of training and competition, his fan following has exponentially increased. Those who know him attribute it to three things: impeccable training, consummate showmanship and perhaps most importantly and most simply, sincere kindness. Now, after this lifetime as an ambassador for one of America’s few original breeds, the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) is pleased to announce that Harris, of Cox’s Creek, KY, has been selected to receive the organization’s highest honor – the USEF Lifetime Achievement Award and the Jimmy A. Williams Trophy.

Through the years, Harris has had a hand in the development of some of the most prominent American Saddlebreds ever known: CH Imperator, CH Giddy-Up-Go, CH Protege, CH Sultan’s Starina and CH Finisterre’s Gift of Love. Among his wins are repeat Five-Gaited World’s Grand Championships, the Three-Gaited World’s Grand Championship and numerous reserves. In addition to making a name for himself in American Saddlebred circles throughout the United States, Harris garnered international attention by sharing news of the breed abroad, helping to influence sales to enthusiasts in Germany, South Africa and Haiti.

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Vote for Combined Driver Chester Weber as America’s Favorite Driving Equestrian

Chester Weber is in the running for America’s Favorite Equestrian. Vote now to have Weber win the Favorite Equestrian in the Driving discipline. Each vote donates $5 to The EQUUS Foundation. (Photo courtesy of Live Oak Combined Driving)

All Votes Support the EQUUS Foundation

Ocala, FL (December 22, 2010) – United States Combined Driver Chester Weber, a member of the winning Silver Medal 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games Combined Driving team and the eight-time USEF National Four-In-Hand Champion, needs your votes for America’s Favorite Equestrian. America’s Favorite Equestrian is an interactive fund raising effort presented jointly by partnership of The EQUUS Foundation and The United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) to raise funds to advance the equestrian sport on an annual basis.

“I am flattered to be chosen as one of the drivers for America’s Favorite Equestrian, but the thing I am most pleased about is that each vote gives a $5 donation to The EQUUS Foundation,” Weber said. “I truly believe in supporting The EQUUS Foundation and it is a great benefit that this contest will raise money for them. The votes really make a difference because 100% of all donations will be used to support charitable causes.”

Weber is one of eight talented athletes who have been named in the driving discipline category of America’s Favorite Equestrian. Eight athletes have also been selected in the disciplines of show jumping, dressage, eventing, reining, vaulting, endurance and para-equestrian. The athlete with the most votes in each discipline will be the winner of that discipline.

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HITS Desert Circuit to Host Three Qualifying Events for EY-Cup’s New Super Final

©Flying Horse Photography. Lucy Davis and True Love on course in the $25,000 California Horsetrader Junior/ Amateur-Owner Jumper Classic High at the 2010 HITS Desert Circuit.

THERMAL, CA (December 17, 2010) — HITS, Inc. is pleased to announce that the 2011 Desert Circuit in Thermal, California will host three qualifying events for the 2011 European Youngster Cup Jumper Series’ new Super Final, which will be held in Leipzig, Germany during the FEI World Cup Finals this coming April.

The European Youngster Cup, also known as the EY-Cup, is a series for ambitious, top young riders born after January 1, 1985 that culminates in a Finals held each December in Germany. This is the first time that riders will have the opportunity to compete at a Super Final during FEI World Cup Finals and the first time that the United States will host qualifiers for the event.

The United States Equestrian Federation has just finalized the qualifying specifications for this highly-popular international show jumping event and has selected HITS Thermal to produce one of the four qualified North American riders that will be eligible to compete at the EY-Cup Super Final.

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Flarida Is NRHA’s First Four Million Dollar Rider

Shawn Flarida riding Wimpys Little Chic in the $100,000 added NRHA World Championship Shootout. NRHA/Waltenberry

Oklahoma City, OK – December 16, 2010 – Just two short years ago, Shawn Flarida became the National Reining Horse Association’s first Three Million Dollar Rider with earnings accumulated at the 2008 NRHA Futurity. History repeated itself when the gates closed on the 2010 NRHA Futurity and the results were announced. With rides in the finals aboard Quistador (owned by Augustine and Gaynia Revenberg) and Shine Chic Shine (owned by Amabile & Strusiner), plus a tie for third in the $100,000 added NRHA World Championship Shootout on Wimpys Little Chic (owned by Arcese Quarter Horses USA), Flarida scooped up more than $100,000 to become NRHA’s first Four Million Dollar Rider. Flarida’s official NRHA earnings are $4,023,885.

Flarida, of Springfield, OH, became the second rider in history to break the $2 million mark in 2006 at the FEI World Reining Masters in Denver, CO. Bill Horn was the first rider to earn in excess of $1 million. Tim McQuay, Craig Schmersal and Andrea Fappani are the only other riders to cross the $2 million earnings level. Only thirteen other riders have crossed the $1 million earnings plateau in addition to Flarida.

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Riders4helmets to Host Helmet Safety Symposium Presented by SUCCEED

Aurora, OH – Riders4Helmets, the helmet awareness campaign founded by Jeri Bryant and equine health product SUCCEED Digestive Conditioning Program, will be hosting a “by invitation only” Helmet Safety Symposium. The event will take place January 8, 2011, at the White Horse Tavern, Wellington, FL, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The symposium is sponsored by Troxel Helmets, Charles Owen Helmets, Tipperary Helmets and Samshield Helmets.

The Helmet Safety Symposium has been organized to bring together representatives from various corners of the equestrian world to discuss the importance of wearing helmets, rider safety and to improve helmet designs, rules and more. The event will provide a series of panel discussions throughout the day. Many in attendance will also sit on the panels, including leading equestrians, representatives from the helmet safety testing authorities, helmet manufacturers, equestrian organizations including USEF and the FEI, and neurosurgeons. The chair of the meeting will be Dr. Craig Ferrell, physician to the United States Equestrian Team.

“We are very excited to be part of the Riders4Helmets campaign and to see it continue to expand,” said Lyndsey White, representative from Freedom Health, LLC, makers of SUCCEED and co-manager of the Riders4Helmets campaign. “Since Courtney King Dye’s tragic accident earlier this year, awareness of the importance of helmet safety has grown to the point where we can now bring together different individuals, corporations and organizations all in one place to discuss the issues and, hopefully, being to change things for the better.”

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The EQUUS Foundation and the USEF Launch America’s Favorite Equestrian

WESTPORT, CT – December 17, 2010 – America’s Favorite Equestrian is an interactive fundraising effort presented jointly in partnership by The EQUUS Foundation and The United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) to raise funds to advance the equestrian sport on an annual basis.

Using mobile texting, you can vote to select America’s Favorite Equestrians and support The EQUUS Foundation with a $5 gift. 100% of all donations will be used to support charitable causes. A minimum of $10,000 in “sport welfare” grants will be awarded, with an additional $5,000 grant awarded to the equestrian discipline generating the most votes.

The objective is for the America’s Favorite Equestrians to be an ongoing program with all equestrian disciplines/breeds represented and the winners recognized in a permanent “Hall of Fame”. The original intent was to launch the inaugural program in conjunction with the World Equestrian Games, which is why initially the eight disciplines of dressage, driving, endurance, eventing, jumping, para-dressage, reining, and vaulting were selected. The affiliates of the United States Equestrian Federation representing these disciplines selected the equestrians.  But, there were some logistics involved in establishing the mobile texting system and developing the website, which delayed the launch until December.

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