GERMANS TAKE STRONG LEAD ON FIRST DAY OF DRESSAGE by Louise Parkes
Lexington, 30 September – Germany holds the whip hand after the first day of dressage in the Eventing Championship at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky (USA) today. Individual rider Simone Dietermann holds top spot after a superb test with Free Easy NRW while Ingrid Klimke lies second with FRH Butts Abraxxas and fellow team-member Dirk Schrade is fourth with Gadget de la Cere. Great Britain’s William Fox-Pitt and his 2010 Rolex Kentucky 4-Star winner Cool Mountain were the only ones to break the German stranglehold when slotting into third, and his result, combined with that of Nicola Wilson (Opposition Buzz) has ensured fourth place for the British in the team rankings going into tomorrow’s closing stage of the dressage phase.
Sweden lies third after Linda Algotsson and the amazing 20 year old Stand by Me slotted into eighth place and Niklas Jonsson (First Lady) finished tenth. But it is the Australians who are the closest challengers to the leading nation after the opening day. When Paul Tapner’s fifth place score with his 2010 Badminton winner Inonothing was added to that of Stuart Tinney and Vettori, the total of 91.00 points left the Aussies in second spot, just 7.2 points behind the leaders.
Lexington, 30 September – America reclaimed the individual World Championship title at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in The Horse Park at Kentucky, USA this afternoon, but it wasn’t the hot favourite, Shawn Flarida, who stood tall and proud as the host nation’s flag was raised. The loss of a stirrup would cost the 2002 World Champion dearly, and it was team-mate and fellow gold medallist in last Sunday’s team event Tom McCutcheon who stood top of the podium.
Underlining the US domination of the sport right now, US rider Craig Schmersal took silver medal position, while defending World Champion Duane Latimer from Canada had to settle for bronze.
The atmosphere in the packed stadium was electric all afternoon as the 21 qualified riders battled it out, and Latimer took the lead when third-last to go in the penultimate group. However the man who took the FEI World Equestrian Games by storm in Aachen four years ago was not riding his great horse Hang Ten Surprize. It was a “catch-ride” he picked up earlier in the year, the considerably less-experienced six year old Dun Playin Tag, that put the leading score of 222.5 on the board.
Devon, PA — The Grand Championship at Dressage at Devon is always a nail biter, but this year’s group of champions really impressed with incredible movement, type and conformation as they competed for this big award. To the thrill of the crowd, two beautiful mares trotted away with the show’s most coveted ribbons during the breed division. Wearing the championship neck sash once again was Iron Spring Farm’s Rabiola, the gorgeous KWPN mare who has won more than ten championships at the show over the years. Finishing with the Reserve Grand Championship was Dazzle, a two-year-old mare by Jazz, who also has quality gaits and charisma.
Rabiola kicked off her day by winning the Four-Year-Old and Older Broodmares class. She then trotted to the Mare and Mature Horse Championships before clinching the title of Grand Champion. The mare, by Metall out of Fabiola by Zadok, is not only frequently a big winner at DAD, she’s also a mom of several Dressage at Devon winners. “She’s the Queen,” said a very happy Mary Alice Malone, owner of Rabiola. “This was really amazing. I’m really lucky to own her.”
Lexington, Ky., Sept. 29, 2010 — U.S. rider Steffen Peters made history today when he rode Ravel to the Grand Prix Special individual bronze medal in the Dressage World Championships, presented by Alltech, at the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. He is the first American ever to win an individual medal in the World Championships.
Peters, 46, from San Diego, Calif., scored 78.54 percent, to finish behind gold medalist Edward Gal of the Netherlands on Moorlands Totilas (85.70%) and Laura Bechtolsheimer, 25, of Great Britain, on Mistral Hojris (81.70%). The three riders finished yesterday’s team Grand Prix in the same order.
Peters was born in Germany and immigrated to United States in 1992. He rode on his first U.S. team at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, winning the team bronze medal. At the 2006 World Equestrian Games, Peters and Ravel, a 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, led the U.S. team to the bronze medal. They finished a painfully close fourth in the 2008 Olympics, and in 2009 they won the FEI World Cup Final.
GAL AND TOTILAS WIN THE SPECIAL IN STYLE – CAN THEY MAKE IT A HAT-TRICK OF GOLD? by Louise Parkes
Lexington, 29 September – The sensational partnership of Edward Gal and Moorlands Totilas made Dutch dressage history today when becoming the first combination from The Netherlands to win the World Championship Grand Prix Special title at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, USA. But this extraordinary pair is also on the brink of adding another record to the list they just keep on compiling. If they can add Friday’s Freestyle to their haul, then they will become the first partnership ever to take both titles, and on present form they look well-set for a hat-trick of gold after yesterday’s team victory.
Silver medallist Laura Bechtolsheimer set a new British record when beating the score she set at the Alltech FEI European Championships in Windsor (GBR) last summer, while Steffen Peters and Ravel took bronze for the USA. Peters was emotional afterwards. “I’ve been counting the days and hours since I missed that bronze medal in Hong Kong (Beijing 2008 Olympic Games),” he pointed out, “so this means a lot to me. I can’t believe how lucky I am, what he (Ravel) did for me today was unbelievable.” And Bechtolsheimer also became the first British rider ever to take World Championship silver in the Special. The previous best British result was bronze for Jennie-Loriston Clarke and Dutch Courage back in 1978 at Goodwood (GBR).
THE DUTCH DRESSAGE DREAM COMES TRUE DESPITE HEARTBREAK FOR ADELINDE by Louise Parkes
Lexington, 28 September – Dutch courage was tested to the limit at The Horse Park in Kentucky today but, despite everything that was thrown at them, The Netherlands came through to take Dressage team gold at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. It was an historic victory as they at last broke the stranglehold of the long-dominant Germans who, this time around, had to settle for bronze while the British rose magnificently to the occasion and claimed silver with considerable style.
In the midst of today’s celebrations however there was also heartbreak in the Dutch camp, as Adelinde Cornelissen was eliminated early in her test when the judges noticed blood in the saliva of her gelding Jerich Parzival. Strong favourites for an individual medal later in the week and key players in the Dutch side, the Dutch partnership were just moving forward after completing the rein-back when Ground Jury President Stephen Clarke (GBR) intervened to tell the rider that she could not continue. Cornelissen said afterwards that she thought she must have been doing the wrong test, but she put a brave face on it at a mid-day press conference. Asked how she was feeling after this shocking disappointment she said, “I have felt better I must say! On one hand it’s such a shame that you can’t finish your test and he was in really great shape…. but on the other hand I’m happy he’s (Parzival) OK and there’s nothing seriously wrong with him.” In fact the big chestnut gelding had bitten his tongue during his warm-up, and veterinary examination showed only a very slight injury. “There was just a tiny spot on the tip of his tongue,” Cornelissen explained, “and it had already stopped bleeding on the way back to the stable, but it ended my test.”
Lexington, Ky., Sept. 28 — Great Britain dominated the second individual qualifying round at the World Reining Championship, presented by John Deere, today at the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. The top qualifying score of 217.5 went to Great Britain’s Lee Rutter, riding Setting Off Sparks, while his countryman Doug Allen with Don Julio Whiz had the second-highest score of 216.5.
Twenty horses were given this second chance at qualifying for Thursday’s individual finals. Sixteen horse-and-rider teams had already qualified by posting high marks during the team reining competition.
Other riders qualifying Tuesday included Fredrik Thomsson of Sweden, marking the first time his country has ever sent a rider to the individual finals. Australia’s Warren Backhouse and the Netherlands’ Hubertus Heule rounded out the qualifiers.
Lexington, Ky., Sept. 28 — The teams from the Netherlands and Great Britain each did something they’ve never done before in the Dressage World Championships, presented by Alltech, at the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.
The Netherlands won the team gold medal (229.74) for the first time ever, and Great Britain won the team silver medal (224.67), the first team medal they’ve ever won in the World Games.
Germany earned the team bronze medal (220.59), marking the first time they have not won the team gold medal since 1970.
The United States finished close behind in fourth (218.12).
As expected, superstar Moorlands Totilas, with Edward Gal, led the Dutch team to victory by topping the individual standings with a score of 84.04 percent. Teammates Imke Schellekens-Bartels, on Hunter Douglas Sunrise, and Hans Peter Minderhoud, on Exquis Nadine, provided scores of 73.44 percent and 72.25 percent to secure the gold medal.
Lexington, Ky., Sept. 27, 2010 — Dutch riders Imke Schellekens-Bartels and Hans Peter Minderhoud gave the Netherlands a strong lead today over Germany in the Dressage World Championships, presented by Alltech.
Riding Hunter Douglas Sunrise, Schellekens-Bartels, 33, took the individual lead by scoring 73.44 percent. Aboard Exquis Nadine, Minderhoud, 36, moved into third place individually by scoring 72.25 percent. Their team total of 145.70 has put their team more than 5 points ahead of Germany (140.34) at the halfway point of the team competition.
German rider Christoph Koschel, riding Donnperignon, sits between the two Dutch riders, scoring 72.63 percent. Two of the five judges preferred Koschel’s test to Schellekens-Bartels’ test. Teammate Anabel Balkenhol scored 67.70 percent to place 12th.
Lexington, Ky., Sept. 27 — After their riders finished third, sixth and seventh individually in the Endurance World Championships, presented by Meydan, the United Arab Emirates today accepted their team gold medals in the Main Stadium at the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.
The UAE team’s total time (23:53:36) was nearly 55 minutes faster than silver medalist France (24:49:46), while Germany surprised the world by claiming the bronze medal (25:34:16). It was Germany’s first medal in endurance at a World Equestrian Games.
The UAE team members were HE Sheikh Hamdan Mohammed Al Maktoum, HE Sheikh Majid Mohammed Al Maktoum, and Sheikh Rashid Dalmook Al Maktoum. They had trained in Newmarket, England, to prepare for the World Games, because the grass training gallops and the climate there are far more similar to Lexington than Dubai, said Jaume Punti-Dachs, one of the team’s trainers.