Tag Archives: Challenge of the Americas

Team Purina Performs in Pink to Capture 2015 Challenge of the Americas

Team Purina, winners of the 2015 Challenge of the Americas. Photos by Mary Adelaide Brakenridge and Alexandra Lynch.

Wellington, FL – March 25, 2015 – The 2015 Challenge of the Americas (COTA), presented by Deloitte, brought elite dressage athletes and show jumpers to the International Polo Club (IPC) Palm Beach on Friday evening to showcase their skill, entertain the crowd, and do their part to raise money for breast cancer research. Team Purina earned a hard-fought win in the Challenge, defeating Team ShowChic and Team Merrill Lynch to take home the title.

COTA is dedicated to raising money for breast cancer research. Proceeds benefit the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through their partner, Play for P.I.N.K. (Prevention, Immediate Diagnosis, New Technology, Knowledge). COTA has grown over the years from a small luncheon dressage exhibition at the Palm Beach Dressage Derby to its current status as a one-of-a-kind exhibition and gala. Mary Ross created it in honor of her mother, Jean Cruse, who died of breast cancer.

“It was a wonderful evening from start to finish,” Ross said. “I’m truly grateful to all of the riders and coaches who devoted so much time and hard work to preparing for the Challenge, as well as the sponsors, committee members and volunteers who did so much to support the event. I can’t thank them enough. Their commitment allows us to make a real difference and contribute to the fight against breast cancer.”

Following the opening ceremonies, the show jumpers led off the 2015 COTA with a fast-paced gambler’s choice competition. Two show jumpers for each team tackled the course, trying to rack up as many points as possible within the time allowed. Juan Manuel Lander, jumping for Team ShowChic, was the top scorer of the group, with Purina’s Spencer Smith and Merrill Lynch’s Javier Berganza not far behind.

Michael Klimke and Christoph Koschel performed a pas de deux sponsored by John and Leslie Malone. Dressage letters and jump standards at the event carried the names of new COTA sponsors Gardy Bloemers & Nick Duke.
Michael Klimke and Christoph Koschel performed a pas de deux sponsored by John and Leslie Malone. Dressage letters and jump standards at the event carried the names of new COTA sponsors Gardy Bloemers & Nick Duke.

As the action shifted over to the dressage arena, two exhibition groups took the stage. Germany’s Michael Klimke and Christoph Koschel teamed up to perform a pas de deux sponsored by John and Leslie Malone. The pair showed impressive harmony and synchronization. Allison Brock, Kati Dagge and Jim Koford of the U.S. put on a fun, engaging pas de trois, sponsored by Deloitte. The creative choreography by team coach Tigger Montague of Spirithorse Productions told a story using upbeat tunes like “Call Me,” “Big Spender,” “Take a Chance on Me,” and “This Is How We Do.”

Team ShowChic was first up in the quadrille competition, and they made an impression before the horses even entered the ring: baton twirler Kayden Muller-Janssen led the way as a group of women and girls, including young riders from Dressage4Kids, carried in a giant pink ribbon. The team rode nicely in time to the music throughout their challenging routine. Erin Swaney of Erin Swaney Dressage was the coach and choreographer for Team ShowChic with assistance from Mary-Cameron Rollins, and Karen Robinson of Applause Dressage arranged the music.

The next team to go, sponsored by The Seley Parker Group of Merrill Lynch, came into this year’s COTA on a two-year winning streak. They put in a spectacular performance to try to defend their title, and they kept the audience guessing with letters on the back of their shirts that spelled out “Breast in Show” when they eventually lined up. Ruth Hogan Poulsen of Freestyles from A-C choreographed the routine and coached the team with assistance from Melissa MacLaren.

The competition came down to the wire, and the pressure was on the last to go, Team Purina. They delivered in style, earning nearly perfect marks from the judges for their harmony, artistry and technical merit as they danced to “On the Floor,” “Fireball,” “Uptown Funk,” and other popular hits. Canadian Olympian David Marcus, FEI 5* judge Linda Zang and FEI 4* judge Lois Yukins comprised the judges’ panel for the event.

Zang remarked that Team Purina had a great plan and stayed in beautiful harmony throughout their ride, and Yukins said the performance was so good, she was sad to see it end. Marcus added that he appreciated the technical difficulty of their routine.

“They were doing Grand Prix movements and doing them really well,” Marcus said. “On top of that, it was a huge crowd-pleaser. The music was great, and it was executed well. That’s hard to beat.”

Team Purina riders were Betsy Steiner, Pamela Goodrich, Jim Koford, Bent Jensen, John Zopatti and J. J. Tate. Terry Ciotti Gallo of Klassic Kur was the team’s choreographer and coach with assistance from Bill Warren. The majority of the riders on Team Purina have performed together at COTA for a long time, but Tate was new to the team and taking part in her second COTA.

“I was really excited to be asked to be a part of it,” Tate said. “We were very committed and very serious at practices every Tuesday. Terry did a superb job putting the music and the choreography together, and I think we knew from the beginning it was going to be pretty cool.”

She appreciated the opportunity to participate in an event that has personal meaning to her.

“What really makes it special for me is that my mom is a 15-year breast cancer survivor,” Tate said. “For me, it hit home how important breast cancer research is. This is a way to give back and be part of something bigger than yourself, something that’s incredibly important to many women as well as men.”

The Challenge Gala put the finishing touch on the evening of entertainment with an elegant dinner and dancing in the IPC Pavilion, drawing a large group of VIPs to enjoy the night and raise additional funds for breast cancer research. Along with exquisite food and an active dance floor, highlights of the Gala included a live auction featuring two fantastic items and a silent auction with fine art, tack and supplies, jewelry and much more.

During the live auction, guests bid on safe and comfortable transportation for a horse from Wellington to Kentucky with popular equine shipping company Brook Ledge Horse Transportation as well as a chance to have themselves or a person of their choice included in “The Bitter Season,” the next book by bestselling author Tami Hoag.

Deloitte teamed up with COTA for the first time this year as the event’s presenting sponsor. Judy Sloan of Deloitte said the professional services firm was glad to get involved with an Olympic sport in which men and woman compete on a level playing field.

“This is Deloitte’s first foray into equestrian sport,” Sloan said. “I’m really thrilled that we can take on our equestrian adventure and sponsorship of all things horses with this event. This is a great cause.”

Mary Adelaide Brakenridge for Phelps Media Group, Inc. International

MEDIA CONTACT:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12012 South Shore Blvd #105
Wellington, FL 33414
561-753-3389 (phone)
561-753-3386 (fax)
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
PhelpsMediaGroup.com

WEG Athlete Annie Peavy Rides Lancelot Warrior for the Fight against Breast Cancer

Annie Peavy and Lancelot Warrior (center) at the 2015 Challenge of the Americas in Wellington, FL. Photo (C) SusanJStickle.com.

Wellington, FL – March 23, 2015 – On Friday, March 20, 2015, the 12th Annual Challenge of the Americas Presented by Deloitte was held at the International Polo Club Palm Beach. This unique fundraiser brings together international riders, world-class music, spectacular Dressage choreography, and the excitement of polo all for the fight against breast cancer. It is an honor to not only attend this event and Gala afterwards but to be selected to ride during this event. 2014 World Equestrian Games’ Para-Equestrian Dressage athlete Annie Peavy of Avon, Connecticut was asked to ride in this event on March 20. Peavy and her Hanoverian gelding Lancelot Warrior, owned by Rebecca Reno, had the opportunity to be a part of the Dressage performance. Peavy is a Young Rider able-bodied Dressage and Para-Dressage athlete who rides with Heather Blitz. Peavy is aiming for the 2016 Rio Paralympics.

Annie Peavy noted, “Michele Hundt from ShowChic sponsors me and she asked me to be on her team for the Challenge. I was very grateful to be part of an amazing team while riding for a great cause. The whole event was enjoyable. Our performance was such a thrill with the crowd cheering. Lancelot was a saint and I could not have been happier with him.”

For more information about The Challenge of the Americas, please visit http://www.challengeoftheamericas.com.

About the Breast Cancer Research Foundation
The Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF) advances the world’s most promising research to eradicate breast cancer. Founded by Evelyn H. Lauder in 1993, BCRF has raised more than $500 million to fuel discoveries in tumor biology, genetics, prevention, treatment, survivorship and metastasis, making it one of the largest non-governmental funders of breast cancer research in the world. This year, BCRF is investing $58.6 million in research, including $11.6 million to the international Evelyn H. Lauder Founders’ Fund focused on metastasis, to support more than 220 researchers at leading medical institutions across six continents. By spending 91 cents of every dollar on research and public awareness programs, BCRF remains one of the nation’s most fiscally responsible nonprofits. BCRF is the only breast cancer organization with an “A+” from CharityWatch, and has been awarded Charity Navigator’s highest rating of four stars 12 times since 2002. For more information, please visit: www.bcrfcure.org.

About Play for P.I.N.K.
Play for P.I.N.K.®, (Prevention, Immediate Diagnosis, New Technology, Knowledge) is a 501 (c)(3) grassroots organization dedicated to raising funds to fight breast cancer through lifestyle and sporting events. Our commitment is to contribute 100% of all proceeds to our sole beneficiary, The Breast Cancer Research Foundation®, in order to fund the world’s top researchers. In 2014, PFP donated $4.5 million to BCRF for a cumulative total of $38.5 million. For more information, visit www.playforpink.org.

About United States Para-Equestrian Association:

The USPEA is a network of riders, judges, national federation board members, and equestrian enthusiasts. The association gives athletes the ability to get involved and expand their knowledge and experience in the Para-Equestrian sport. The USPEA encourages para-athletes to participate in all disciplines under the para-equestrian umbrella.

The USPEA is a recognized affiliate of the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) which serves as the National Governing Body for the equestrian sport. This relationship between the USPEA and USEF is to encourage para-equestrian competitors, leisure riders, coaches, fans and enthusiasts to network and get involved with the entire equestrian sport.

Ultimately the goal of the USPEA is to foster growth in the para-equestrian discipline. From growth in the number of participants to growth as a team, and growth in the experience and knowledge of all involved. From local horse shows to international Olympic Games, the USPEA will provide para-equestrians the knowledge of what they need to succeed. The USPEA connects with the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the Federation Equestre Internationale (FEI), the United States Dressage Federation (USDF), and USEF which provides Para-Equestrians the top equestrian resources.

In June 2010, the USPEA earned its 501 (c)(3) status which has encouraged supporters to help supply funding to the Para-Equestrian Team as a recognized affiliate of the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF).

For more information about the USPEA, please visit www.USPEA.org or contact USPEA President Hope Hand by e-mail: Wheeler966@aol.com or by phone: (610)356-6481.

Partners for Pink Makes a Difference for Challenge of the Americas

Todd Minikus was among the top show jumpers competing at the 2014 Challenge of the Americas.

Wellington, FL – March 20, 2015 – The 2015 Challenge of the Americas (COTA) is set to kick off at the International Polo Club (IPC) Palm Beach tonight at 5:30, and this one of a kind event is getting an additional boost from the support of Partners for Pink, a new sponsorship group that has been very popular in its inaugural year.

Partners for Pink is a society of individuals and business owners who have come together in the fight against breast cancer. COTA assists the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF) through their partner Play for P.I.N.K (Prevention, Immediate Diagnosis, New Technology, Knowledge). Joining Partners for Pink is a great way to get involved with COTA at an accessible level while receiving numerous sponsorship benefits.

Among the members of Partners for Pink for 2015 is Visions Salon, a Wellington mainstay that has been serving residents and seasonal visitors for more than 25 years.

“I really love the equestrian community and was looking for an opportunity to get more involved,” said Tom Monticello, owner of Visions Salon. “Breast cancer is a cause near and dear to my heart.”

Another company with a long history in the South Florida area is Red Barn Feed & Supply, which provides a complete selection of products for the animal community of Palm Beach County. Red Barn has previously sponsored COTA and returns this year as part of Partners for Pink.

“Partners for Pink is a fresh approach, and we feel it will help breast cancer research that much more,” Store Manager Mario Mejia said. “We believe that this is a very good way for Red Barn to join in the fight against breast cancer.”

Lindsay Zeltzer – Illustration and Fine Art has also stepped up as a Partners for Pink sponsor. Zeltzer, a portrait artist and mixed media/collage illustrator, is happy to support COTA since she has a personal connection with the disease.

“I’m excited to be involved with Partners for Pink as members of my close family have been affected by breast cancer, and through the funding of research, we can consider a future without its devastation,” she said. “Challenge of the Americas is not only a fundraiser toward this goal, but also a celebration of victories in breast cancer treatment and survivors of the disease.”

Stillpoint Farm, one of Wellington’s top dressage facilities, is part of the family of Partners for Pink sponsors in 2015. The farm’s owner, Tuny Page, is an accomplished international dressage competitor and can appreciate all the time and effort that goes into pulling together the intricate quadrille routines for COTA.

“I love the Challenge; it’s fantastic entertainment,” Page said. “There’s a real tradition built around it now, and people want to attend and get behind it. I applaud everything that the riders, choreographers and organizers do to put together this event. The bottom line is that it supports a tremendously important cause.”

Phelps Media Group, a leader in sports media with a primary focus on competitive equestrian disciplines, has added its name to the roster of Partners for Pink sponsors.

“Challenge of the Americas is an iconic event in Wellington, and we are proud to be involved,” said Chip McKenney, CEO of Phelps Media Group. “The funds raised each year by COTA bring us one step closer to finding a cure.”

Leon F. Gerard, DDS, who operates a dental practice in Boca Raton, has joined Partners for Pink this year as well. Gerard and his wife, Deborah Menotte, are horse lovers who feel it is important to contribute to breast cancer research.

“Sponsoring an event like COTA is a perfect way, in our mind, to lend our support,” Menotte said. “I think it’s a great event at a great venue, and it brings awareness to breast cancer in a fun and different way.”

Partners for Pink can also count Wellington Regional Medical Center among its members. Wellington Regional is a progressive acute-care facility and medical center that has been serving Palm Beach County and the surrounding region since 1986. It offers the high-tech advantages of a big-city hospital along with the personalized care of a hometown provider.

With such a remarkable response in its first year, Partners for Pink has already made a major difference by rallying businesses and individuals to unite in the fight against breast cancer.

Challenge of the Americas Fast Facts

The 2015 Challenge of the Americas, presented by Deloitte, is a spectacular event in which teams of high-performance dressage riders compete in intricate quadrilles set to world-class music and choreography. For the 2015 edition, teams will also include elite show jumpers competing to rack up more points for their teams.

This annual fundraiser is a one-of-a-kind affair. Competing riders include the “Who’s Who” of top equestrian competitors in the United States, Canada, Latin America and Europe. The 2015 Challenge of the Americas will once again raise money to help find a cure for breast cancer by benefiting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through their partner Play for P.I.N.K.

When:

Fri., March 20, 2015
5:30 p.m.     Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres
6:00 p.m.     Opening ceremonies
6:10 p.m.     Challenge of the Americas Competition
7:30 p.m.     Award Presentation
7:45 p.m.     The Challenge Gala: Dinner and Dancing

Where:
International Polo Club Palm Beach
3667 120th Avenue South
Wellington, FL 33414
www.internationalpoloclub.com

Ticket Information:
Mary Ross
8067 Montserrat Place
Wellington, FL 33414
(561) 433-0988
Anglot@aol.com

Ticket prices:
VIP Tables of 10:   price includes competition and gala dinner and dancing
Gold Patron           $6,500 per table
Silver Patron       $4,500 per table
Bronze Patron       $2,500 per table
Individual Seating: $250 per person
Partners for Pink: $1,500 special sponsorship package that includes two VIP tickets along with advertising and media promotion
General Admission seating $20 per person at the gate
Children 12 and under admitted free (General Admission)

Website:
www.challengeoftheamericas.com

Facebook:
www.facebook.com/ChallengeOfTheAmericas

The Challenge of The Americas Beneficiary: The Breast Cancer Research Foundation through their partner Play for P.I.N.K

Play for P.I.N.K.
Play for P.I.N.K.® (Prevention, Immediate Diagnosis, New Technology, Knowledge) is a 501(c)(3) grassroots organization dedicated to raising funds to fight breast cancer through lifestyle and sporting events. Our commitment is to contribute 100% of all proceeds to our sole beneficiary, The Breast Cancer Research Foundation in order to fund the world’s top researchers. In 2014, PFP donated $4.5 million to BCRF for a cumulative total of $38.5 million.

Website: playforpink.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/playforpink

Website: www.bcrfcure.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheBreastCancerResearchFoundation

Mary Adelaide Brakenridge for Phelps Media Group, Inc. International

MEDIA CONTACT:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12012 South Shore Blvd #105
Wellington, FL 33414
561-753-3389 (phone)
561-753-3386 (fax)
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
PhelpsMediaGroup.com

Partners for Pink Becomes a Popular Choice for Challenge of the Americas Supporters

Quadrille teams perform musical freestyles and compete for the top prize at the Challenge of the Americas. Photos by Meg McGuire.

Wellington, FL – March 2, 2015 – The Challenge of the Americas (COTA) relies on the backing of its dedicated sponsors who join in the fight against breast cancer. This year, COTA has had an incredible response to Partners for Pink (PFP), a special sponsorship opportunity being offered for the first time.

PFP is a new, up-and-coming society of individuals and business owners who have come together in the fight against this terrible disease. COTA assists The Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF) through their partner Play for P.I.N.K (Prevention, Immediate Diagnosis, New Technology, Knowledge). Joining PFP is a great way to get involved with COTA at an accessible level while receiving numerous sponsorship benefits.

The society offers local, regional and national coverage in print media, various spots for on-site recognition, VIP seating at the event that includes several hospitality and entertainment benefits, and six general admission tickets. Membership for this group is set at $1,500, and spaces are quickly filling as the March 20 event, held at the International Polo Club Palm Beach, approaches. If you are interested in becoming a sponsor, please contact Mary Ross at (561) 251-7945.

Among the inaugural Partners for Pink sponsors is Marc Ulanowski of Engel & Völkers Wellington and Palm Beach. Ulanowski has been involved with COTA in one way or another for many years, and the cause is a special one to him.

“A dear friend’s husband passed away from breast cancer, which was a shocker to most people because they don’t really understand that men get breast cancer too,” Ulanowski said. “So as a male, it was very important to me to be a supporter. I thought that getting more men involved might bring attention to the fact that men do get breast cancer as well.”

Ulanowski thinks that the event is a chance for dressage people to let loose and have some fun for a good cause. He is particularly impressed by the hard work of the riders on the musical quadrille teams.

Show jumpers will compete to earn additional points for their associated quadrille teams at the 2015 Challenge of the Americas. Laura Kraut is shown here at COTA in 2014.
Show jumpers will compete to earn additional points for their associated quadrille teams at the 2015 Challenge of the Americas. Laura Kraut is shown here at COTA in 2014.

“The dedication of the riders is just amazing,” he said. “They practice and practice and practice. The amount of time and energy people put into this makes the event so special.”

Also joining Partners for Pink this year is Marysue Jacobs of Destiny International Properties. She appreciates the opportunity to support such an important cause and thinks the event is a fun way to illustrate what the sport of dressage is all about.

“I have many friends who have been affected by cancer, and I think the Challenge is a super way to bring tremendous public attention to it,” Jacobs said. “I can take friends who are not horse people to the Challenge. It’s an event that is entertaining and helps them understand just how amazing that relationship between a human and a horse can be with lots of training and work.”

Terri Kane of Diamante Farms, another first time sponsor, feels that COTA stands out on the busy Wellington social calendar because of the personal experience that so many people have had with breast cancer.

She regularly attends COTA, and her daughter, Grand Prix competitor Devon Kane, has ridden several times at COTA as a quadrille team member. When the opportunity to sponsor the event through PFP came along, she was happy to lend her support.

“I think it’s a great idea and such a worthy cause,” Kane said. “This is something I totally believe in. I value being involved with the search for the cure.”

Another company that has joined the family of sponsors this year through a PFP sponsorship is Health Systems Management Network (HSMN). Through her role as President and CEO of HSMN, Cathy Tarantini has seen firsthand the effects of breast cancer.

“HSMN is proud to be a sponsor of the Challenge of the Americas and our friend Mary Ross,” Tarantini said. “HSMN stands with Mary because as a company we have helped hospitals, physicians and their patients through the difficult time by finding the resources to do their job.”

Like many of the PFP members, Cece Stewart, owner of Oak Meadows Farm, has been attending the event for years but decided this year that she wanted to do more.

“I have a sister who is a breast cancer survivor, so it has a lot of personal meaning for me as well,” Stewart said. “I’m excited to be part of it. When I got the information about Partners for Pink, I had just gotten off the phone with my sister. I sat back and thought, ‘You know, I need to be more active in this beyond attending.'”

Stewart has been attending COTA since the early years of the event and even has a son who flies down every year from Chicago for the event.

“I’m very excited to support the Challenge of the Americas,” Stewart said. “It is a fun evening, and it is great for the equestrian community to come together for this very important charity.”

Challenge of the Americas Fast Facts

The 2015 Challenge of the Americas, presented by Deloitte, is a spectacular event in which teams of high-performance dressage riders compete in intricate quadrilles set to world-class music and choreography. For the 2015 edition, teams will also include elite show jumpers competing to rack up more points for their teams.

This annual fundraiser is a one-of-a-kind affair. Competing riders include the “Who’s Who” of top equestrian competitors in the United States, Canada, Latin America and Europe. The 2015 Challenge of the Americas will once again raise money to help find a cure for breast cancer by benefiting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through their partner Play for P.I.N.K.

When:

Fri., March 20, 2015
5:30 p.m.     Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres
6:00 p.m.     Opening ceremonies
6:10 p.m.     Challenge of the Americas Competition
7:30 p.m.     Award Presentation
7:45 p.m.     The Challenge Gala: Dinner and Dancing

Where:
International Polo Club Palm Beach
3667 120th Avenue South
Wellington, FL 33414
www.internationalpoloclub.com

Ticket Information:
Mary Ross
8067 Montserrat Place
Wellington, FL 33414
(561) 433-0988
Anglot@aol.com

Ticket prices:
VIP Tables of 10:   price includes competition and gala dinner and dancing
Gold Patron           $6,500 per table
Silver Patron        $4,500 per table
Bronze Patron       $2,500 per table
Individual Seating: $250 per person
Partners for Pink: $1,500 special sponsorship package that includes two VIP tickets along with advertising and media promotion
General Admission seating $20 per person at the gate
Children 12 and under admitted free (General Admission)

Website:
www.challengeoftheamericas.com

Facebook:
www.facebook.com/ChallengeOfTheAmericas

The Challenge of The Americas Beneficiary: The Breast Cancer Research Foundation through their partner Play for P.I.N.K

Play for P.I.N.K.
Play for P.I.N.K.® (Prevention, Immediate Diagnosis, New Technology, Knowledge) is a 501(c)(3) grassroots organization dedicated to raising funds to fight breast cancer through lifestyle and sporting events. Our commitment is to contribute 100% of all proceeds to our sole beneficiary, The Breast Cancer Research Foundation in order to fund the world’s top researchers. In 2014, PFP donated $4.5 million to BCRF for a cumulative total of $38.5 million.

Website: playforpink.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/playforpink

Website: www.bcrfcure.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheBreastCancerResearchFoundation

Mary Adelaide Brakenridge for Phelps Media Group, Inc. International

MEDIA CONTACT:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12012 South Shore Blvd #105
Wellington, FL 33414
561-753-3389 (phone)
561-753-3386 (fax)
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
PhelpsMediaGroup.com

International Polo Club Palm Beach to Host the 2015 Challenge of the Americas

Show jumper Laura Kraut at the 2014 Challenge of the America. Photo by Meg McGuire.

Wellington, FL – January 30, 2015 – The Challenge of the Americas (COTA), presented by Deloitte, is a spectacular event that deserves a spectacular venue, and the International Polo Club (IPC) Palm Beach fits the bill. The dazzling setting under the lights is the perfect host for the evening of top-notch equestrian entertainment to benefit an important cause.

COTA, held this year on March 20 at 5:30 p.m., brings together elite international dressage and show jumping riders for a competition that assists The Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF) through their partner Play for P.I.N.K. (Prevention, Immediate Diagnosis, New Technology, Knowledge). The event provides much-needed funding for lifesaving research.

“It’s a very worthwhile charity event that we are thrilled to support,” said John Wash, IPC’s President of Club Operations. “The leadership and those on the event committee are wonderful people with big hearts.”

Wash said that although IPC’s focus is polo, he enjoys the opportunity to support other equestrian disciplines and feels COTA is an important addition to the diverse slate of events offered at IPC.

“I think people love a change of pace,” he explained. “Our members who are also dressage riders and jumpers are excited to have an event of this caliber, featuring top equestrian competitors, at the club. COTA is very well supported by our membership.”

Mary Ross, Chairman of COTA, is looking forward to a great event at IPC this year.

“The International Polo Club is a beautiful venue for both the equestrian entertainment and the Challenge Gala that follows,” Ross said. “The IPC team is so helpful and accommodating at every step as we prepare for the event, and we very much appreciate their support.”

With teams of top-notch dressage riders already beginning to prepare, competition is sure to be fierce in COTA’s musical quadrille competition. Show jumpers will join the fray and ensure an exciting evening at IPC.

“I’ve always enjoyed the Challenge of the Americas,” Wash said. “Between the show jumping and the musical quadrilles, it is such a fantastic and entertaining event for a great cause. We’re very glad to continue our involvement as the host site.”

Challenge of the Americas Fast Facts

The 2015 Challenge of the Americas, presented by Deloitte, is a spectacular event in which teams of high-performance dressage riders compete in intricate quadrilles set to world-class music and choreography. For the 2015 edition, teams will also include elite show jumpers competing to rack up more points for their teams.

This annual fundraiser is a one-of-a-kind affair. Competing riders include the “Who’s Who” of top equestrian competitors in the United States, Canada, Latin America and Europe. The 2015 Challenge of the Americas will once again raise money to help find a cure for breast cancer by benefiting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through their partner Play for P.I.N.K.

When:

Fri., March 20, 2015
5:30 p.m.     Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres
6:00 p.m.     Opening ceremonies
6:10 p.m.     Challenge of the Americas Competition
7:30 p.m.     Award Presentation
7:45 p.m.     The Challenge Gala: Dinner and Dancing

Where:
International Polo Club Palm Beach
3667 120th Avenue South
Wellington, FL 33414
www.internationalpoloclub.com

Ticket Information:
Mary Ross
8067 Montserrat Place
Wellington, FL 33414
(561) 433-0988
Anglot@aol.com

Ticket prices:
VIP Tables of 10:   price includes competition and gala dinner and dancing
Gold Patron           $6,500 per table
Silver Patron        $4,500 per table
Bronze Patron       $2,500 per table
Individual Seating: $250 per person
Partners for Pink: $1,500 special sponsorship package that includes two VIP tickets along with advertising and media promotion
General Admission seating $20 per person at the gate
Children 12 and under admitted free (General Admission)

Website:
www.challengeoftheamericas.com

Facebook:
www.facebook.com/ChallengeOfTheAmericas

The Challenge of The Americas Beneficiary: The Breast Cancer Research Foundation through their partner Play for P.I.N.K

Play for P.I.N.K.
Play for P.I.N.K.® (Prevention, Immediate Diagnosis, New Technology, Knowledge) is a 501(c)(3) grassroots organization dedicated to raising funds to fight breast cancer through lifestyle and sporting events. Our commitment is to contribute 100% of all proceeds to our sole beneficiary, The Breast Cancer Research Foundation in order to fund the world’s top researchers. In 2014, PFP donated $4.5 million to BCRF for a cumulative total of $38.5 million.

Website: playforpink.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/playforpink

Website: www.bcrfcure.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheBreastCancerResearchFoundation

Mary Adelaide Brakenridge for Phelps Media Group, Inc. International

MEDIA CONTACT:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12012 South Shore Blvd #105
Wellington, FL 33414
561-753-3389 (phone)
561-753-3386 (fax)
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
PhelpsMediaGroup.com

COTA Team Choreographers Create Fun While Prepping for Pink

Ruth Hogan-Poulsen explains the next movement to Team International sponsored by Seley Parker Group Merrill Lynch. Melissa MacLaren looks on. Photos by Meg McGuire.

Wellington, FL – March 4, 2014 – All of the volunteers for the Challenge of the Americas (COTA) donate untold time and energy to the event that raises funds for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, but the dedication of each quadrille team’s choreographers is beyond admirable.

The effort the three team leaders have put into the intricate dressage freestyles will make the event, set for Friday, March 7, at the International Polo Club Palm Beach in Wellington, FL, all the more spectacular. Teams are passionately putting the final touches on their freestyles and are excited to reveal their efforts before a supportive audience.

The music, choreography and other details of each team’s performance are kept under lock and key. All will be revealed Friday night as these teams playfully compete for the crowd’s heart. As professional as these quadrilles will be the night of the event, the compositions were as fun to craft as they will be to watch.

“We sat at the table with colored M&Ms and said, ‘OK. These four go here, then these four go here,'” said Ruth Hogan-Poulsen of her and co-coach Melissa MacLaren’s initial vision for Team International, sponsored by the Seley Parker Group of Merrill Lynch.

Team Purina USA’s choreographer Terry Ciotti Gallo said she likes to start the fun with her riders right from the beginning.

“One night we usually make it a party,” Gallo explained. “We have dinner, we listen to music, they (the riders) let me know if they like it, they make suggestions. This isn’t a dictatorship. My riders have input. The answer is usually that they have very good suggestions. So it may start with me but it doesn’t end with me.”

Endel Ots, rider and choreographer for Team Off the Record sponsored by ShowChic, said he and his team also took some creative liberties in their initial process while not skimping on the party.

“We all went to dinner one night and walked through it in the parking lot,” he laughed.

Bethany Peslar helps Team Off the Record's coach, Endel Ots, play the team's music for the quadrille from his phone
Bethany Peslar helps Team Off the Record’s coach, Endel Ots, play the team’s music for the quadrille from his phone

Team Off the Record is comprised of six riders all under the age of 30 and this is their first year to participate in the event.

“It’s a great cause,” Ots said. “I watched it last year and it brought a lot of joy to people. Dressage can be so serious – we all work so hard. It’s fun to make it a little bit more fun. So it’s more of a party. It’s nice to have it be a fun experience for a great cause.”

Team Purina USA’s leader has been contributing her time to COTA since its founding in 2002. Gallo explained how crafting the choreography and music for the quadrille is a specific and tailored process.

“We want that audience to come back every year because the main purpose is to raise money for breast cancer; it’s not to get a score,” she explained. “So we want to keep it entertaining and light so people come back year after year and know that they’re going to have fun.”

All the team participants make this event special based on the passion that’s behind their production.

“Once I have a vision, I cannot put it down until it’s finished,” Team International’s Hogan-Poulsen explained. “I have this vision of how I want it to come out. I’ll edit, call Melissa in – it’s a lot of feedback. I’ll be sitting at my computer with a glass of wine, but at some point I have to put it away and go to bed!”

As the choreographers worked on their creations, they each incorporated themes – though in the spirit of competition, Team USA was reluctant to share theirs. Although Gallo wouldn’t divulge, she did say she enjoyed the creation of the freestyle.

“It’s my favorite part – how to figure out a puzzle,” she said. “I am a puzzle person.”

Hogan-Poulsen has composed a statement, echoing the mashup of music and lyrics, which will be featured in the evening’s program to capture the spirit of the quadrille: prepare, support, say something, be brave, fight for pink.

Hogan-Poulsen described the musical compilation as “upbeat pop and rock with motivational lyrics. Lyrics that all say something about the cause. If you listen to the music, there is a story. Whether you hear the lyrics or not, you’re going to feel the emotions. You’re still going to feel the story.”

Ots said they have a unique surprise in store for the audience with their Great Gatsby themed piece.

“It’s not a very long number – the idea was to make it really quick and really fun. We wanted to have it be a big party – and the party is not just down in the arena,” he hinted.

Hogan-Poulsen and Gallo both share the tactic of keeping a journal where they gather potential quadrille patterns and ideas throughout the year. They also both said their riders are given a substantial voice in the creative process.

It’s evident that a playful essence shines through in each of these quadrilles’ distinctive voices, pushing creative boundaries while championing a great cause.

“We don’t often get the opportunities to give back, so when we’re asked we have to say yes,” Gallo said. “I really truly believe it’s part of our responsibility as the human race. We have a responsibility to ourselves, we have a responsibility to our families and we have a responsibility to the society around us. I really truly enjoy it and it’s why I come back year after year.”

The Challenge of the Americas Presented by SSG Gloves and Havensafe Farm Fast Facts

What:  The Challenge of the Americas (COTA), presented by SSG Gloves and Betsy Juliano’s Havensafe Farm, is a spectacular event in which teams of high-performance dressage riders compete in intricate quadrilles set to world-class music and choreography. New to 2014, teams will also include elite show jumpers riding a four-bar course in an effort to rack up more points for their teams.

This annual fundraiser is a one-of-a-kind affair. Competing riders include the “Who’s Who” of top equestrian competitors in the United States, Canada, Latin America and Europe. The 12th annual Challenge will once again raise money to help find a cure for breast cancer by benefiting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through Play for P.I.N.K.

When:
Fri., March 7, 2014
5:30 p.m.     Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres
6:00 p.m.     Opening ceremonies
6:10 p.m.     Challenge of the Americas Competition
7:45 p.m.     Award Presentation
8:00 p.m.     The Challenge Gala: Dinner and Dancing

Where:
International Polo Club Palm Beach
3667 120th Avenue South
Wellington, FL 33414
www.internationalpoloclub.com

Ticket Information:
Mary Ross
8067 Montserrat Place
Wellington, FL 33414
(561) 433-0988
Anglot@aol.com

Ticket prices:
VIP Tables of 10:   price includes competition and gala dinner and dancing
Gold Patron           $6,500 per table
Silver Patron         $4,500 per table
Bronze Patron        $2,500 per table
Individual Seating: $250 per person
General Admission seating $20 per person at the gate
Children 12 and under admitted free (General Admission)

Website:
www.challengeoftheamericas.com

Facebook:
www.facebook.com/ChallengeOfTheAmericas

The Challenge of The Americas Beneficiary: The Breast Cancer Research Foundation through Play for P.I.N.K

Play for P.I.N.K.
Play for P.I.N.K. (Prevention, Immediate diagnosis, New technology, Knowledge) is a grassroots organization dedicated to raising funds to fight breast cancer, by creating and promoting awareness of breast cancer through sporting and lifestyle events including men’s and women’s golf tournaments, tennis, swimming, card games, equestrian events, and shopping benefits.  Our commitment is to contribute 100% of all funds raised to our beneficiary, The Breast Cancer Research Foundation.  In 2013, PFP donated $4.25 million to BCRF for a cumulative total of $34 million. For more information about PFP, visit playforpink.org.

Website: playforpink.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/playforpink

Website: www.bcrfcure.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheBreastCancerResearchFoundation

Meg McGuire for Phelps Media Group, Inc. International

MEDIA CONTACT:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12012 South Shore Blvd #105
Wellington, FL 33414
561-753-3389 (phone)
561-753-3386 (fax)
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
PhelpsMediaGroup.com

Top Dressage Riders and Showjumpers Team Up to Support Breast Cancer Research

The Challenge of the Americas Presented by SSG Gloves and Havensafe Farm Fast Facts

What:  The Challenge of the Americas (COTA), presented by SSG Gloves and Betsy Juliano’s Havensafe Farm, is a spectacular event in which teams of high-performance dressage riders compete in intricate quadrilles set to world-class music and choreography. New to 2014, teams will also include elite show jumpers riding a four-bar course in an effort to rack up more points for their teams.

This annual fundraiser is a one-of-a-kind affair. Competing riders include the “Who’s Who” of top equestrian competitors in the United States, Canada, Latin America and Europe. The 12th annual Challenge will once again raise money to help find a cure for breast cancer by benefiting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through Play for P.I.N.K.

When:
Fri., March 7, 2014
5:30 p.m.     Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres
6:00 p.m.     Opening ceremonies
6:10 p.m.     Challenge of the Americas Competition
7:45 p.m.     Award Presentation
8:00 p.m.     The Challenge Gala: Dinner and Dancing

Where:
International Polo Club Palm Beach
3667 120th Avenue South
Wellington, FL 33414
www.internationalpoloclub.com

Ticket Information:
Mary Ross
8067 Montserrat Place
Wellington, FL 33414
(561) 433-0988
Anglot@aol.com

Ticket prices:
VIP Tables of 10:   price includes competition and gala dinner and dancing
Gold Patron           $6,500 per table
Silver Patron         $4,500 per table
Bronze Patron        $2,500 per table
Individual Seating: $250 per person
General Admission seating $20 per person at the gate
Children 12 and under admitted free (General Admission)

Website:
www.challengeoftheamericas.com

Facebook:
www.facebook.com/ChallengeOfTheAmericas

The Challenge of The Americas Beneficiary: The Breast Cancer Research Foundation through Play for P.I.N.K

Play for P.I.N.K.
Play for P.I.N.K. (Prevention, Immediate diagnosis, New technology, Knowledge) is a grassroots organization dedicated to raising funds to fight breast cancer, by creating and promoting awareness of breast cancer through sporting and lifestyle events including men’s and women’s golf tournaments, tennis, swimming, card games, equestrian events, and shopping benefits.  Our commitment is to contribute 100% of all funds raised to our beneficiary, The Breast Cancer Research Foundation.  In 2013, PFP donated $4.25 million to BCRF for a cumulative total of $34 million. For more information about PFP, visit playforpink.org.

Website: playforpink.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/playforpink

Website: www.bcrfcure.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheBreastCancerResearchFoundation

Sue Weakley for Phelps Media Group, Inc. International

MEDIA CONTACT:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12012 South Shore Blvd #105
Wellington, FL 33414
561-753-3389 (phone)
561-753-3386 (fax)
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
PhelpsMediaGroup.com

Challenge of the Americas Adds Thrilling Four-Bar Class to Team Competition

Todd Minikus and Uruguay. Photos by Kenneth Kraus.

Wellington, FL – February 18, 2014 – The Challenge of the Americas will amp up the competition with a new addition to the 12th annual quadrille freestyle dressage event – four-bar showjumping with top high-performance riders.

Superstar showjumpers will team up with a dressage quadrille group to earn points to determine overall winners. Top showjumpers donating their time and talent to help raise money for breast cancer research include Beezie Madden, Todd Minikus, Laura Kraut, Pablo Barrios and Paulo Santana.

The exciting four-bar class, held on Friday, March 7 before the dressage competition, features riders from each team progressing through a series of combinations, four at a time. Each time a rider goes clean, the jumps get bigger and bigger until there’s only one horse and rider combination remaining.

Beezie Madden of Cazenovia, NY is a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist and the current reigning FEI World Cup Champion. With 119 major victories to her credit, she’s one of the nation’s best.

Todd Minikus of Wellington is one of America’s winningest grand prix riders with over 120 major victories in his win column. He is a frequent member of the United States Equestrian team in Nations Cup competitions and was an alternate for the Olympic Games.

Laura Kraut and Cedric
Laura Kraut and Cedric

Laura Kraut of Wellington is also a two-time Olympic Gold Medalist and a top contender on the world stage in the highly competitive Global Champions Tour. She has 106 career grand prix wins.

Pablo Barrios of Venezuela is an Olympic veteran for his home country. He burst upon the scene in Wellington in 2010 posting five big wins on the WEF tour that year including the $150,000 Spy Coast Grand Prix. He has been the Hagyard Rider of the Year in Kentucky.

Paulo Santana, of São Paulo, Brazil, stunned the crowd and the competition in Wellington two years ago when he rode Taloubet to victory in the $50,000 World Cup Qualifier CSI-W at Holiday and Horses. Since then, he has been a top competitor here and across the country.

The four-bar along with the freestyle dressage quadrille will be part of the Challenge of the Americas and held at the International Polo Club. Proceeds benefit the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through Play For P.I.N.K.

The evening will begin with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres followed by opening ceremonies. Then, world-class show jumpers and dressage riders team up to compete for points and bragging rights. First, the jumpers will take to the field to tackle the four-bar course. Then, the quadrille challenge pits teams of Grand Prix dressage riders against each other as they perform intricate freestyle patterns to music. After the award presentation, the Challenge Gala will cap off the event with dinner and dancing.

The Challenge of the Americas Presented by SSG Gloves and Betsy Juliano’s Havensafe Farm Fast Facts

What:  The Challenge of the Americas (COTA), presented by SSG Gloves and Betsy Juliano’s Havensafe Farm, is a spectacular event in which teams of high-performance dressage riders compete in intricate quadrilles set to world-class music and choreography. New to 2014, teams will also include elite show jumpers riding a four-bar course in an effort to rack up more points for their teams.

This annual fundraiser is a one-of-a-kind affair. Competing riders include the “Who’s Who” of top equestrian competitors in the United States, Canada, Latin America and Europe. The 12th annual Challenge will once again raise money to help find a cure for breast cancer by benefiting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through Play for P.I.N.K.

When:
Fri., March 7, 2014
5:30 p.m.     Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres
6:00 p.m.     Opening ceremonies
6:10 p.m.     Challenge of the Americas Competition
7:45 p.m.     Award Presentation
8:00 p.m.     The Challenge Gala: Dinner and Dancing

Where:
International Polo Club Palm Beach
3667 120th Avenue South
Wellington, FL 33414
www.internationalpoloclub.com

Ticket Information:
Mary Ross
8067 Montserrat Place
Wellington, FL 33414
(561) 433-0988
Anglot@aol.com

Ticket prices:
VIP Tables of 10:   price includes competition and gala dinner and dancing
Gold Patron           $6,500 per table
Silver Patron         $4,500 per table
Bronze Patron        $2,500 per table
Individual Seating: $250 per person
General Admission seating $20 per person at the gate
Children 12 and under admitted free (General Admission)

Website:
www.challengeoftheamericas.com

Facebook:
www.facebook.com/ChallengeOfTheAmericas

The Challenge of The Americas Beneficiary: The Breast Cancer Research Foundation through Play for P.I.N.K

Play for P.I.N.K.
Play for P.I.N.K. (Prevention, Immediate diagnosis, New technology, Knowledge) is a grassroots organization dedicated to raising funds to fight breast cancer, by creating and promoting awareness of breast cancer through sporting and lifestyle events including men’s and women’s golf tournaments, tennis, swimming, card games, equestrian events, and shopping benefits.  Our commitment is to contribute 100% of all funds raised to our beneficiary, The Breast Cancer Research Foundation.  In 2013, PFP donated $4.25 million to BCRF for a cumulative total of $34 million. For more information about PFP, visit playforpink.org.

Website: playforpink.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/playforpink

Website: www.bcrfcure.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheBreastCancerResearchFoundation

Sue Weakley for Phelps Media Group, Inc. International

MEDIA CONTACT:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12012 South Shore Blvd #105
Wellington, FL 33414
561-753-3389 (phone)
561-753-3386 (fax)
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
PhelpsMediaGroup.com

Challenge of the Americas March 7 Event to Benefit Breast Cancer Research Foundation

The 2013 Seley Parker Group/Merrill Lynch Team International, winners of the Challenge of the Americas. Photo by Mary Adelaide Brakenridge.

The Challenge of the Americas Presented by SSG Gloves Fast Facts

What:  The Challenge of the Americas (COTA), presented by SSG Gloves, is a spectacular event where teams of high-performance dressage riders compete in intricate quadrilles set to world-class music and choreography. New to 2014, teams will also include elite showjumpers riding a course while choosing to tackle the most difficult jumps and shaving seconds off their time in an effort to rack up more points for their teams.

This annual fundraiser is a one-of-a-kind affair where competing riders include the “Who’s Who” of top equestrian competitors in the United States, Canada, Latin America and Europe. The 12th annual Challenge will once again raise money to help find a cure for breast cancer by benefiting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation through Play for P.I.N.K.

When:
Fri., March 7, 2014
5:30 p.m.     Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres
6:00 p.m.     Challenge of the Americas Competition – Dressage and Show Jumping
7:30 p.m.     Award Presentation
7:45 p.m.     The Challenge Gala: Dinner and Dancing

Where:
International Polo Club Palm Beach
3667 120th Avenue South
Wellington, FL 33414
www.internationalpoloclub.com

Ticket Information:
Mary Ross
8067 Montserrat Place
Wellington, FL 33414
(561) 433-0988
Anglot@aol.com

Ticket prices:
VIP Tables of 10:   price includes competition and gala dinner and dancing
Gold Patron           $6,500 per table
Silver Patron         $4,500 per table
Bronze Patron        $2,500 per table
Individual Seating: $250 per person
General Admission seating $20 per person at the gate
Children 12 and under admitted free (General Admission)

Website:
www.challengeoftheamericas.com

Facebook:
www.facebook.com/ChallengeOfTheAmericas

The Challenge of The Americas Beneficiary: The Breast Cancer Research Foundation through Play for P.I.N.K

Play for P.I.N.K.
Play for P.I.N.K. (Prevention, Immediate diagnosis, New technology, Knowledge) is a grassroots organization dedicated to raising funds to fight breast cancer, by creating and promoting awareness of breast cancer through sporting and lifestyle events including men’s and women’s golf tournaments, tennis, swimming, card games, equestrian events, and shopping benefits.  Our commitment is to contribute 100% of all funds raised to our beneficiary, The Breast Cancer Research Foundation.  In 2013, PFP donated $4.25 million to BCRF for a cumulative total of $34 million. For more information about PFP, visit playforpink.org.

Website: playforpink.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/playforpink

Website: www.bcrfcure.org
Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheBreastCancerResearchFoundation

Sue Weakley for Phelps Media Group, Inc. International

MEDIA CONTACT:
Phelps Media Group, Inc.
12012 South Shore Blvd #105
Wellington, FL 33414
561-753-3389 (phone)
561-753-3386 (fax)
pmginfo@phelpsmediagroup.com
PhelpsMediaGroup.com

Zerbino Interagro “Plays for Pink” on Challenge of the Americas Team International

Cherri Reiber and Zerbino Interagro at the 2013 Challenge of the Americas. (Photo courtesy of JRPR)

Wellington, FL (March 14, 2013) – Nowhere was the beauty and power of dressage put to better use than on Saturday evening, March 9th during the 2013 Challenge of the Americas (COTA), where quadrille teams of Grand Prix horses danced elaborate routines to music to support breast cancer research and awareness.  Zerbino Interagro, ridden by trainer Cherri Reiber, demonstrated the baroque elegance of Lusitano dressage horse as they rode for Team International and helped boost the team to the highest score and the win during the 11th Annual Challenge of the Americas at the Jim Brandon Equestrian Center in West Palm Beach, Florida.

“Lusitanos like Zerbino Interagro are a special treat.  It is a beautiful breed to have participate in such an historically haute ecole performance.  It really hearkens back to the origins of dressage and classical horsemanship,” said COTA organizer, Mary Ross.

The equestrian Who’s Who list of COTA riders and guests, many whose lives have been touched by cancer, created a memorable evening of horsemanship in support, through Play for P.I.N.K., of the important work of the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF).  The Challenge, which celebrated its 11th year, has raised upwards of $1.8 million in funds directly benefiting BCRF research.

“I just keep wanting to raise more,” said a deeply appreciative Ross, who started the event in memory of her late mother, Jean Cruse, and her battle against cancer.  “I am so appreciative of the riders who come and perform.  They do it simply because cancer in some way has touched their lives.  They get nothing in return but dinner.”

The real winners, in addition to the beneficiaries, were the spectators, who were swept off their feet by the elegant equestrian synchronicity of the winning Team International sponsored by the Seley Parker Group of Merrill Lynch:  Todd Flettrich, Devon Kane, Susanne Hamilton, Nancy Later, Sharon McCusker and Cherri Reiber made mastering the quadrille pattern created by coaches and choreographers Ruth Hogan-Poulsen and Erin Swaney look effortless. Hogan-Poulsen’s musical compilation included hits by recent Oscar-winner Adele, as well as P!nk, David Guetta, and Bruno Mars.

The Challenge of the Americas began in 2002 as a luncheon exhibition at the Palm Beach Dressage Derby to its position today as a ‘must’ on the Florida equestrian scene’s March calendar.  Each year’s COTA features dressage alongside another equestrian sport, and this year’s spotlight was on bridleless reining performances with brothers Trevor and Rick Steed, and the special ‘return to the saddle’ by Mason Phelps, alternate for the 1968 US Olympic Three-Day Team, retired from the irons for 15 years. Phelps performed a disco Pas de Deux with US Olympic Bronze Medalist Debbie McDonald that drew cheers from appreciative fans.

Interagro Lusitanos, breeders of Zerbino Interagro were thrilled that one of their horses was on hand to contribute to the fund raising event. “We love to showcase these talented horses and it is even more exciting when it is for such a good cause,” said Cecilia Gonzaga, the Managing Director for Interagro Lusitanos in Itipira, Brazil.

About Interagro Lusitanos

Founded in 1975 by Dr. Paulo Gavião Gonzaga to preserve the Lusitano breed, Interagro Lusitanos is now recognized as the world’s largest breeder and exporter of Lusitano horses. Dr. Gonzaga started with a small band of four mares and one stallion imported to Brazil from the breed’s native Portugal; to date over 600 horses populate the 1200-acre ranch outside São Paulo. Today, Cecilia Gonzaga manages the farm and operations. Interagro Lusitanos are handled, prepared, and evaluated from birth, with a handful of the best stock presented at auction each year. Interagro hosts guest at the farm with their Destination Lusitano program. For more information on Destination Lusitano or to learn more about Interagro Lusitanos, visit their website at www.lusitano-interagro.com.

For more information contact:
Johnny Robb – JRPR, Inc.
561-753-4608
jrpr@mac.com