Category Archives: USEF

US Show Jumping Team Secures Spot at FEI Nations Cup Final; Earns Gold at CSIO4* Langley

Photo Credit: Rebecca Berry (Instagram @rebecca_d_berry)

Langley, British Columbia – In the third and final leg of the FEI Nations Cup North America, Central America, and Caribbean League, the Hermès U.S. Show Jumping Team bested home team Canada and rivals Mexico and Ireland to secure their qualification for the FEI Nations Cup Jumping Final in Barcelona, Spain, September 28 – October 1. The Canadian team claimed silver on 14 faults, just a single point behind the U.S., with Ireland taking home bronze with 25 faults.

The Team of Heather Caristo-Williams, Catherine Tyree, Adrienne Sternlicht, and Margie Engle represented the U.S. in this event, going in with a mere 10 point lead in the division standings, a narrow margin over Canada and Mexico with only two qualifying spots available for the Finals.

“Our number one priority was to qualify for the Nations Cup Final today,” said U.S team Chef D’Equipe, Robert Ridland. “But our second priority was to do it in a way that benefits everyone in the long-term – and that is to give a bunch of different riders experience. We have had 14 riders on four Nations Cup teams so far this year. Some view that as a bit risky, but it has always been a priority for me. Experienced riders and younger riders feed off of one another, in a good way, and that’s what we did today.”

The U.S. team kept their lead ahead of Canada through the first round, finishing with just four penalties. Caristo-Williams (Saugerties, N.Y.) and Nations Cup newcomer, Qui Vive Des Songes Z, the 2006 Zangersheide stallion owned by Holly and Ralph Caristo had a difficult start as they made their way over the Peter Holmes-designed course, earning a score of 22 faults.  However, following second in the order, Tyree (Chicago, Ill.) and Bokai, Mary Tyree’s 2006 KWPN gelding had a beautiful round, dropping just one rail in their second Nations Cup appearance together.

Both Sternlicht (Greenwich, Conn.) with the 2008 Starlight Farm 1 LLC.’s Bavarian Warmblood mare, Cristalline, and Engle (Wellington, Fla.) riding Royce, Gladewinds Partners, LLC’s 2004 Oldenburg stallion, jumped double clear rounds, securing the US’s top spot heading into the second round.

With qualification to the FEI Nations Cup Jumping Finals at stake, the U.S. needed consistent rides in Round two. Caristo-Williams improved on her first round but picked up 12 faults on her second ride of the course. With the pressure on, Tyree and Sternlicht both jumped near-perfect rounds. Tyree picked up a mere four penalties with one rail down and Sternlicht jumped a careful clear round, earning only a single time fault.

Meanwhile, the Canadian home team had returned to the field to battle their way to the top, with clear rounds jumped by Tiffany Foster (CAN), Christopher Surbey (CAN), and Ian Millar (CAN) to add nothing to their first round total. Ireland also put forth a worthy fight. Ireland’s pathfinders, Daniel Coyle and Cita, jumped the only double clear performance of the day.

Team anchor Engle had little room for error as the final rider on course. She and Royce needed to stay within the time, with no more than four faults to secure a U.S. victory. They did exactly that, finishing well within the time but lowering one rail, clinching a team gold medal and winning the division to qualify for the global series Final in Barcelona.

“Days like today are what we do it for,” said Ridland. “There was a lot on the line today. All the teams here felt it – today determined whether they went to Barcelona or not, and that kind of pressure is not always the case. There was more pressure today in a Nations Cup than in others and our riders did a great job responding to that pressure. The course was excellent, the weather perfect and a beautiful facility. This was the result we were looking for and we are pretty happy about it.”

By Julian McPeak, US Equestrian Communications Department

US Dressage Team Readies for FEI Nations Cup CDIO4* Uggerhalne

Mette Rosencrantz and Marron.

Uggerhalne, Denmark – The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team continues their European Nations Cup swing when they compete at FEI Nations Cup CDIO4* Uggerhalne, June 4 and 5. The U.S. team of Katherine Bateson-Chandler, Shelly Francis, Kathleen Raine, and Mette Rosencrantz enter the Grand Prix ring against a field of four teams all focused on solidifying top honors. Chef d’Equipe Charlotte Bredahl-Baker will guide the U.S. when they compete in the following order:

Mette Rosencrantz and Marron: Rosencrantz (Topanga, Calif.) will compete in her first Nations Cup at CDIO4* Uggerhalne. With nine top-five placings since March 2016, Rosencrantz and Marron, her own 2000 Danish Warmblood gelding, are ready to test their skills in a Nations Cup atmosphere. This spring, they placed first in the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special at the Rancho Murieta, Calif. CDI in April and first in the Burbank Grand Prix Special in March.

Katherine Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar: Bateson-Chandler (Wellington, Fla.) and Alcazar return to competition rested and ready following a brief break following the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF). She and Alcazar, Jane Clark’s 2005 Dutch Warmblood gelding, capped off competition at the (AGDF) with a first-place finish in the Grand Prix Freestyle CDI4* during week 10.

Shelly Francis and Danilo: Francis (Loxahatchee, Fla.) and Danilo, Patricia Stempel’s 2004 Hanoverian gelding, led the way for the U.S. Team at CDIO5* Compiègne, placing fifth in the Grand Prix Freestyle. As a member of numerous Nations Cup teams, Francis will use her experience to guide the U.S. at CDIO4* Uggerhalne. The combination began the year with a successful showing during the AGDF with wins in the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Freestyle CDI3* during week 10, followed by the Grand Prix CDI3* during week 11.

Kathleen Raine and Breanna: Raine (Murrieta, Calif.) and Breanna, her own, Jennifer Mason, and David Wightman’s 2000 Hanoverian mare, enter CDIO4* Uggerhalne after placing sixth in the Grand Prix Special at CDIO5* Compiègne. Earlier in the year, the combination collected six top-three placings on the West Coast including back-to-back wins in the Burbank World Cup Grand Prix and Grand Prix Freestyle in March, their first back-to-back victories in six years on the Big Tour.

Find out more about FEI Nations Cup CDIO4* Uggerhalne at the Equitour Aalborg sponsored by ECCO.

By Dana Rossmeier, US Equestrian Communications Department

US Equestrian Names US Dressage Team for FEI Nations Cup CDIO5* Rotterdam

Lexington, Ky. – US Equestrian has named the following athlete-and-horse combinations to The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team for FEI Nations Cup™ CDIO5* Rotterdam, June 22-25, in Rotterdam, Netherlands:

Laura Graves (Geneva, Fla.) with her own Verdades, a 2002 Dutch Warmblood Gelding

Olivia LaGoy-Weltz (Haymarket, Va.) with her own Lonoir, a 2004 Danish Warmblood gelding

Kasey Perry-Glass (Wellington, Fla.) with Diane Perry’s Goerklintgaards Dublet, a 2003 Warmblood gelding

Dawn White O’Connor (Cardiff, Calif.) with Four Winds Farms’ Legolas 92, a 2002 Westphalian gelding

Robert Dover will serve as Chef d’Equipe.

Find out more about FEI Nations Cup™ CDIO5* Rotterdam.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

US Equestrian Announces Cancellation of 2017 Hermitage Classic CDE

Lexington, Ky. – US Equestrian regrets to announce the cancellation of the Hermitage Classic CDE, scheduled for October 19-22, 2017. Due to the World Pairs Championship in Lipica, Slovenia on September 20-24, 2017, the Hermitage Classic CDE would be very difficult to produce. This is largely due to the host of the event, and much of the Hermitage staff, being in Europe this summer as well as the expense and certain restrictions on return shipping to the USA. Host Steve Wilson looks forward to producing a bigger and better Hermitage Classic in 2018.

The Hermitage Classic CDE had been awarded the opportunity to host the 2017 USEF Single Driving National Championships, which means they will be moving to another venue this year. The USEF Driving Sport Committee met Wednesday, May 31, to review the Championship bid applications for the remaining Events. The Committee voted unanimously to award the Championships to the Kentucky Classic CDE, October 5-8, 2017, at the Kentucky Horse Park. The decision is pending approval of the International Disciplines Committee (IDC) and the US Equestrian Board of Directors.

This situation is a reminder that a small group of individuals graciously sponsor many combined driving events, which is a large responsibility to take on. US Equestrian and the driving community are committed to revitalizing driving sports. It is important to reach out to local events and offer support in any way possible, and competition organizers can make sponsorships fit donors’ needs.

For more information, please contact Danielle Aamodt, US Equestrian director of driving, at daamodt@usef.org.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

Hermés US Show Jumping Team Sets Sights on Barcelona at FEI Nations Cup CSIO4* Langley

Heather Caristo-Williams and Qui Vive Des Songes Z (Rebecca Berry)

Langley, British Columbia – Following the second of three legs of the FEI Nations Cup Jumping North America, Central America, and Caribbean League, the standings are close as the League’s Nations head to FEI Nations Cup CSIO4* Langley, May 31 – June 4 at Thunderbird Show Park in Langley, British Columbia.

The results of Friday’s Nations Cup competition will determine which Nations qualify for the global series Final in Barcelona, Spain at the end of September.  The U.S. starts the final qualifier with a slim lead over Canada and Mexico, but will need a strong performance to secure qualification. Only the top two Nations in the League will earn their way to the Final.  With five teams competing, it will be an exciting day of jumping and calculating as the teams continually assess what is needed to secure qualification.

Under the experienced guidance of Robert Ridland, Chef d’Equipe, the U.S. athlete/horse combinations will compete in the following order:

Heather Caristo-Williams and Qui Vive Des Songes Z: Aboard the 2006 Zangersheide stallion, owned by Holly and Ralph Caristo, Caristo-Williams (Saugerties, N.Y.) brings breadth and stamina to the team. The combination already has two top-10 placings in 2017, including the $86,000 WEF Challenge Cup during week 12 of the Winter Equestrian Festival.  The pair looks to be in good form heading into their Nations Cup debut.

Catherine Tyree and Bokai: Competing in only their second Nations Cup, Tyree (Chicago, Ill.) and Bokai look to continue their success in Langley after contributing to a second-place finish at FEI Nations Cup CSIO4* Wellington in March. Mary Tyree’s 2006 KWPN gelding and Tyree jumped back-to-back clear rounds in their Nations Cup debut, bursting onto the scene as a combination to watch in 2017 and beyond.

Adrienne Sternlicht and Cristalline: Sternlicht (Greenwich, Conn.) and the 2008 Starlight Farm 1 LLC.’s Bavarian Warmblood mare recently aided the Hermés U.S. Show Jumping Team in their silver-medal finish in CSIO4* Coapexpan, Mexico where Sternlicht debuted the prestigious pink coat for the first time. This up-and-coming rider has a list of accolades, including five top-10 placings in 2016 aboard Cristalline.

Margie Engle and Royce: Riding Gladewinds Partners, LLC’s 2004 Oldenburg stallion, Engle (Wellington, Fla.) will anchor the team with her wealth of experience and top placings across the globe. Included in her accolades are a top-10 finish at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney and competing in the 2011 and 2012 FEI World Cup™ Finals in Leipzig, Germany and Hertogenbosch, Netherlands. She and Royce most recently competed in the Hollow Creek Grand Prix during the Kentucky Spring Horse Show where they earned a fifth-place finish.

Watch the live stream of FEI Nations Cup™ CSIO4* Langley on FEI TV, Friday, June 2, at 7 p.m. ET.

Children and Junior Teams Look to Gain Experience in International Competition

Talented teams of U.S. Children and Junior riders will compete in Team Competitions at CSIJCh Langley. A newly added FEI event for Child and Junior Riders, the CSIJCh is being held in conjunction with CSIO4* Langley. Looking to gain valuable experience in a team competition format at the international event, the Children’s and Junior’s Teams will face tough competition from the Canadian team on their home turf. The athlete/horse combinations for the Children’s team will compete in the following order:

Emma Callanan (Lebanon, N.J.) with her own Q Two, a 2000 Dutch Warmblood gelding

Mikayla Foster (Dallas, Texas) with Apex Equestrian Center’s Ashville Rock, a 2008 Irish Sport Horse gelding

Maggie Kehring (Woodside, Calif.) with the Kehring Family’s Cole Haan, a 2008 Holsteiner gelding

Alexa Leong (Sacramento, Calif.) with her own Hertogin Ter Drie Leien, a 2007 Belgian Warmblood mare

With slight changes to the roster for the Junior team, the athlete/horse combinations will represent the U.S. in the Junior competition, in the following order:

Louisa Brackett (Grayslake, Ill.) with Andrew Bourns Sport Horses Inc.’s Czechmate, a 2006 Czech Warmblood gelding

Giavanna Rinaldi (St. Charles, Ill.) with Blue Chip Bloodstock’s Julio VH Elzenhout, a 2009 Belgian Warmblood gelding

Delaney Flynn (Scottsdale, Ariz.) with Grace Jacobsen’s Milan IV, a 2005 Holsteiner gelding

Both teams will compete under the direction of the U.S. Show Jumping Youth Chef d’Equipe/Technical Advisor DiAnn Langer.

Watch the live stream of the Children’s and Junior competitions on the TBird Live Cast.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

US Eventing Team Earns FEI Nations Cup Bronze at Houghton International CICO3*

FEI Nations Cup podium (l to r) U.S., Germany, and Great Britain (Courtesy of Caroline Martin)

Norfolk, England – The Land Rover U.S. Eventing Team secured a third-place finish in the FEI Nations Cup at the Saracen Horse Feed Houghton International Horse Trials CICO3*. The U.S. team of Hannah Sue Burnett and Harbour Pilot, Katherine Coleman and Longwood, and Caroline Martin and The Apprentice finished on a score of 160.9, while Germany won gold with a score of 122.2 and Great Britain collected silver with a score of 142.5. The U.S. combinations finished in the top 20 individually, setting them up for success at upcoming European competitions. Leslie Law served as the Chef d’Equipe at this event, in addition to his role as the Emerging Athlete Coach for the United States Equestrian Team (USET) Foundation’s Karen Stives Endowment Emerging Athletes Tour.

“I thought it was a great performance with dressage producing some personal best scores,” Law said. “Show jumping went okay, but cross-country was fantastic with three competitive rides, all clear and inside the time around a course that caused plenty of problems.”

Burnett (The Plans, Va.) and Harbour Pilot were the top U.S. finishers in 10th place with a score of 49.2. They had a lovely dressage test to earn a score of 37.2, a personal best. The pair had three rails for 12 faults in the show jumping phase, but Burnett and Jacqueline Mars’s 2003 Irish Sport Horse gelding finished on a high note by going double-clear in Sunday’s cross country phase.

Martin (Miami Beach, Fla.), a Karen Stives Endowment Emerging Athletes Tour recipient, finished in 15th and 16th place with her two mounts. With Pebbly Maximus, Martin scored a personal best of 43.1 in their dressage test and had a single rail down in the show jumping phase for four faults. Martin and her own and Sherrie Martin’s 2003 Irish Sport Horse gelding had 6.8 time penalties in the cross-country phase to finish on a score of 53.9. With her Nations Cup mount, The Apprentice, Martin scored 48.1 in the dressage phase and had one rail and two time faults for six faults in the show jumping phase. Martin and Sherrie Martin’s 2004 Irish Sport Horse gelding were double-clear in the cross-country phase to finish on a score of 54.2.

Coleman (New Orleans, La.) and Longwood were the pathfinders for the U.S. team, beginning the competition with a dressage score of 53.5. Coleman and her own 2002 Irish Sport Horse gelding had a single rail in the show jumping phase for four faults and were double-clear in the cross-country phase to finish in 20th place on a score of 57.5.

View complete results

By Kathleen Landwehr, US Equestrian Communications Department

NBC Announces Time Change for Re-Air of 2017 Rolex Three-Day Event

Lexington, Ky. – NBC has announced that the re-air of the 2017 Rolex Three-Day Event presented by Land Rover (RK3DE) will now occur on Sunday, May 28, 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. EST on NBC Sports Network.

NBC’s first re-air of the April 27-30 RK3DE on Sunday, May 7 at 1:30 p.m. ET reported drawing 649,000 viewers (p2+ ratings), beating the 2016 ratings as the second highest-rated sports program across all reported networks in its broadcast window.

Coverage of the RK3DE is also available for US Equestrian members only on the USEF Network. Help US Equestrian #SharetheJoy of equestrian sports by not only watching nationally televised events, but by visiting the USEF Network page for more information on the USEF Network broadcast schedule and on-demand content.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

US Equestrian Names US Show Jumping Team for FEI Nations Cup CSIO5* Sopot

Lexington, Ky. – US Equestrian has named the following athletes to the Hermès U.S. Show Jumping Team for FEI Nations Cup™ CSIO5* Sopot, June 8-11, in Sopot, Poland. CSIO5* Sopot will serve as the first of four stops on U.S. Show Jumping’s summer CSIO5* Nations Cup European tour. In addition, the U.S. will field teams for FEI Nations Cup™ CSIO5* Falsterbo, Sweden, July 13-16, FEI Nations Cup™ CSIO5* Aachen, Germany, July 18-23, and FEI Nations Cup™ CSIO5* Dublin, Ireland, August 9-13, to be announced at a later date.

Lauren Hough (Wellington, Fla.)

Reed Kessler (Lexington, Ky.)

Laura Kraut (Royal Palm Beach, Fla.)

Chloe Reid (Washington, D.C.)

Paris Sellon (Los Angeles, Calif.)

Robert Ridland will serve as Chef d’Equipe for the U.S. Team.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

US Equestrian Announces US Show Jumping Team for FEI Nations Cup CSIO4* Langley

Lexington, Ky. – US Equestrian has named the following athletes to the Hermès U.S. Show Jumping Team for FEI Nations Cup™ CSIO4* Langley, May 31 – June 4, in Langley, British Columbia. The Nations Cup competition will be held in conjunction with the Odlum Brown BC Open at Thunderbird Show Park. CSIO4* Langley serves as the last North America qualifying competition for Barcelona’s FEI Nations Cup™ Jumping Final in September. The U.S. sits in first place and leads Mexico by a very slim margin, followed by Canada, with the top two teams advancing to the Final.

The following athlete/horse combinations will compete for the U.S., listed alphabetically:

Heather Caristo-Williams (Saugerties, N.Y.)

Margie Engle (Wellington, Fla.)

Adrienne Sternlicht (Greenwich, Conn.)

Catherine Tyree (Chicago, Ill.)

Robert Ridland will serve as Chef d’Equipe for the U.S. Team.

Watch the live stream of FEI Nations Cup™ CSIO4* Langley on FEI TV, Friday, June 2, at 4 p.m. ET.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

Perry-Glass, Lyle, and Blythe Win Big at US Dressage Festival of Champions

Kasey-Perry Glass and Goerklintgaards Dublet. (SusanJStickle.com)

Gladstone, N.J. – The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions came to its conclusion on Sunday with three national champions being crowned. All competitors in the USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Championship, USEF Intermediaire I Dressage National Championship, and USEF Young Adult “Brentina Cup” Dressage National Championship presented by Dressage Today performed their freestyle tests in order to earn the remainder of their overall championship score. Kasey Perry-Glass, Adrienne Lyle, and Kaitlin Blythe were crowned national champions.

Quality work was displayed by the combinations throughout The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions. “It was fun because it was up and down a little bit from one class to the next so I really didn’t know who was in the lead coming into today. I think clearly everybody made their best effort today,” commented Gary Rockwell, President of the Ground Jury. “We had some really good rides today. We need depth in this country. We can see some good young horses and young riders coming up, so that is our future; we need to support and encourage them and give them a chance.”

USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Championship

A talented field of seven combinations competed for top honors in the USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Championship with 45%, 40%, and 15% of their overall championship score coming from the Thursday’s FEI Grand Prix Test, Friday’s FEI Grand Prix Special, and Sunday’s FEI Grand Prix Freestyle, respectively.

Perry-Glass (Orangevale, Calif.) and Goerklintgaards Dublet added a USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Championship title to their resume by winning with an overall score of 71.575%. They put in a lovely test to win the FEI Grand Prix Test with a score of 73.700%, and had a few bobbles in the trot work of the FEI Grand Prix Special to finish fifth with a score of 68.529%. The duo did not have a completely clean performance in the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle but high degree of difficulty movements and a great artistic flow allowed them to finish second in the class with a score of 73.325%.

Watch Perry-Glass and Goerklintgaards Dublet’s freestyle

“The whole entire show was really not our best show, but you kind of need those, especially since it is our second year at Grand Prix; our first year was kind of a whirlwind. We have been picking on the small stuff and sometimes it all gets little bit dysfunctional when you are picking on the small stuff,” Perry-Glass explained. “I am proud of us for fighting through it and keeping our heads up and going. Having the support of [Adrienne Lyle and Olivia LaGoy-Weltz] and my other teammates has been great, and it is fun to compete here. I feel pretty lucky.”

Adrienne Lyle (Ketchum, Idaho) and Salvino received the Reserve Champion title after finishing on an overall score of 71.344%. They had a flowing performance in the FEI Grand Prix Test to finish second with a score of 70.600%, and were second again in the FEI Grand Prix Special, despite bobbles in the first piaffe and the one tempi changes, with a score of 70.314%. Lyle and the Salvino Partners, LLC’s 2007 Hanoverian stallion finished the championship on a high note by winning the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle with a score of 76.325%. Lyle used the music from her freestyle with Wizard, her longtime partner and 2012 Olympic Games mount, and changed the timing to match Salvino’s movement.

“I had a blast in my test today. We have never done the freestyle, so we pulled it together quickly. It was Wizard’s freestyle and we edited it time-wise to match his big stride. Terry Gallo did a great job with me calling last minute,” Lyle said. “I was thrilled with how Salvino handled it. I wasn’t sure what he was going to be like with the music and the crowd, there was a lot of stuff happening. I couldn’t be happier with what he gave me.”

Olivia LaGoy-Weltz (Haymarket, Va.) and Lonoir finished third in the championship with an overall score of 70.927%. They performed a smooth test to finish third in the FEI Grand Prix Test with a score of 70.400% and won the FEI Grand Prix Special with a score of 70.686%. LaGoy-Weltz and her own 2004 Danish Warmblood gelding gave another solid effort in the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle, highlighted by passage half-passes and quarter turns in the piaffe, to finish third with a score of 73.150%.

USEF Intermediaire I Dressage National Championship

Sixteen combinations rode for the title in the USEF Intermediaire I Dressage National Championship with 40%, 45%, and 15% of their overall championship score coming from the Thursday’s FEI Prix St. Georges Test, Saturday’s FEI Intermediate I Test, and Sunday’s FEI Intermediate I Freestyle, respectively.

Lyle and Horizon performed well and showed much promise for the future on their way to winning the USEF Intermediaire I Dressage National Championship with a score of 70.967%. They had an unfortunate bobble in their changes in the FEI Prix St. Georges Test but recovered well to finish in fifth place with a score of 69.763%. The duo had a fantastic performance in the FEI Intermediate I Test to win with a score of 70.526%. Lyle rode Betsy Juliano’s 2007 Oldenburg mare to flashy music, including “It’s Raining Men.” They wowed the judges with difficult movements, such as canter pirouettes into tempi changes, to win the FEI Intermediate I Freestyle with a score of 75.500%.

Watch Lyle and Horizon’s freestyle

“That mare is so fun in the ring. She loves to get out there and perform. When she is on, you just have to sit there and pilot her through it,” Lyle said. “I borrowed that music from Katherine Bateson-Chandler, so thank you to everyone who helped me get to the championships.”

Jane Cleveland (Wellington, Fla.) and Monique earned the Reserve Champion title with a score of 70.768%. They painted a lovely picture, aside from one bobble in the change after the medium canter, to win the FEI Prix St. Georges Test with a score of 70.789%, then had a solid test to finish fourth in the FEI Intermediate I Test with a score of 69.947%. Cleveland and her own 2009 Danish Warmblood mare had an impressive freestyle performance with upbeat music coming from Cleveland’s barre class, finishing second in the FEI Intermediate I Freestyle with a score of 73.175%.

“[My ride] was so much fun. We did better today than before. She was better today than she has been all week,” Cleveland said. Elaborating on what it is like to ride at the USET Foundation headquarters, Cleveland said, “It is special for a few reasons. The barns are exquisite and they have so much history. There is a plaque of famous horses on each stall…I had the opportunity to ride here five years ago, and I learned that if you get the opportunity to ride here, you get here.”

Lyle also finished third in the championship with Harmony’s Duval on a score of 70.466%. She finished second with Harmony’s Duval in the FEI Prix St. Georges Test with a score of 70.605% and finished in third in the FEI Intermediate I Test with a score of 70.132%. Lyle and Duval Partners LLC’s 2008 Dutch Warmblood gelding performed their freestyle to dramatic music that complemented the gelding’s movement to place fourth with a score of 71.100%.

USEF Young Adult “Brentina Cup” Dressage National Championship presented by Dressage Today

A field comprised of seven rising stars competed for the title in the USEF Young Adult “Brentina Cup” Dressage National Championship presented by Dressage Today with 40%, 45%, and 15% of their overall championship score coming from the Thursday’s FEI Intermediate II Test, Friday’s FEI Grand Prix 16-25 Test, and Sunday’s FEI Grand Prix 16-25 Freestyle, respectively.

Kaitlin Blythe (Rougemont, N.C.) and Don Principe won the USEF Young Adult “Brentina Cup” Dressage National Championship presented by Dressage Today with an overall score of 66.769%. They performed a fluid test, aside from an error of course, to finish second in the FEI Intermediate II Test with a score of 66.684%. Blythe and Maryanna Haymon’s 1999 Hanoverian stallion displayed quality movements in the FEI Grand Prix 16-25 Test to finish second with a score of 66.000%. The duo had great canter work in the FEI Grand Prix 16-25 Freestyle to win with a score of 69.300%.

Watch Blythe and Don Principe’s freestyle

“I’m thrilled with my horse. He loves the freestyle. It is his favorite thing; he just lights up in the arena. I cannot believe this is real life, actually; it is so surreal. I’m so thankful for everyone who helped me get here,” Blythe said.

Natalie Pai (Wellington, Fla.) and Unlimited were the Reserve Champions, ending on an overall score of 66.444%. They had a few moments of tension in the FEI Intermediate Test to finish third with a score of 66.447% but an improved performance in the FEI Grand Prix 16-25 Test to win the class with a score of 66.605%. Pai and Peacock Ridge, LLC’s 2001 KWPN gelding showcased clean changes and half turns in the piaffe in the FEI Grand Prix 16-25 Freestyle to place third with a score of 65.950%.

“He was awesome today. He really likes the freestyle; he gets way more active and energetic. I was really happy with a completely clean test,” Pai explained. “This whole weekend I can’t believe I was able to really step it up and make every single set of changes clean. He was so good this weekend and today really tried his best.”

Molly Paris (Charlotte, N.C.) and Countess finished third in the championship with an overall score of 65.992%. They had a great performance to win the FEI Intermediate II Test with a score of 67.079% and put forth a solid effort in the FEI Grand Prix 16-25 Test to place third with a score of 64.698%. Paris and her own 2002 Danish Warmblood mare performed their FEI Grand Prix 16-25 Freestyle with a high degree of difficulty which included passage half-passes and extended canter to canter pirouettes. However, they had some miscommunications, but finished second with a score of 66.975%.

By Kathleen Landwehr, US Equestrian Communications Department