For the second time in her career, US National Champion Combined Pony Driver Shelly Temple and her Morgan gelding LR Ami B-Line (Cooper) will represent the US at the World Pony Driving Championships. This year the event is held in Lipica, Slovenia, September 22-25, 2011.
Making the US Team has been a yearlong process for Shelly, Cooper, and her navigator/husband, Fran Doto. They and other members of the long listed drivers have been competing and training under the tutelage of US driving coach, Michael Freund. Overa August and September several long listed drivers have trained and competed in Europe. In August, Shelly was 5th at the German National Championship in Minden, Germany where she won the dressage and cones classes for single ponies.
Shelly acknowledges the team aspect of combined driving: “I am thankful for the USEF’s support and the training and instruction from Michael Freund over the past year. Michael’s coaching has been instrumental at improving all aspects of my driving. I also appreciate the support of the individual donors and corporate sponsors whose products keep Cooper health, fit, and in top form: Kentucky Equine Research, Kombat Boots, Purina feeds, Omega Fields, ThinLine, Leather Therapy, and Charles Owens. This is truly a team sport and I couldn’t be competing next week in the World Championships without the generosity of sponsors and all the great people who have donated to Team Catalyst.”
Other members of the USEF World Pony Driving Team are Miranda Cadwell, Jennifer Matheson, Wendy O’Brien, Laurie Astegiano, and Allison Stroud. Suzy Stafford will compete as an individual.
U.S. Coverage will be available here: http://www.usefnetwork.com/coverage/archives.aspx.
More information is available here: http://www.lipica.org/en/enter-page/305?id=113.
To follow Shelly and Team Catalyst World Championship efforts, visit http://catalystdriving.blogspot.com/.