Tag Archives: Katherine Bateson-Chandler

Katherine Bateson-Chandler Featured on Horses in the Morning Radio Show

Photo courtesy of JRPR.

Wellington, FL (December 1, 2016) — With the winter dressage show season fast approaching in south Florida and the World Equestrian Games scheduled to be held on the United States east coast less than two years from now, top U.S. dressage riders are filled with anticipation. Horse Radio Network’s talk show Horses in the Morning invited one of these riders, Grand Prix competitor Katherine Bateson-Chandler, to the broadcast’s “Omega Alpha Equine Monday Edition” to give the inside scoop on what it’s like to prepare for the show ring as the gaze of international dressage turns to the U.S.

An online podcast of Bateson-Chandler’s interview is now available on Horses in the Morning’s website, in which Bateson-Chandler shares her thoughts on planning for the World Equestrian Games (WEG), the upcoming Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Florida, her bond with her superstar mount Alcazar, and the invaluable boost she gains from training with British Olympian Carl Hester.

The road to the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) will offer triumphs and inevitable challenges for standout horse-and-rider pairs who hope to compete in the Tryon, North Carolina event. Bateson-Chandler is already working hard to prepare for the WEG – one of the biggest events on the global sporting calendar – and spent this past summer competing in Europe and training with Carl Hester.

The radio show was quick to get right to the question on most riders’ minds – one that Bateson-Chandler was happy to answer – which was whether or not she has actually ridden Valegro while at Hester’s facility. “I have!” she said. “Carl and Charlotte Dujardin both are very open with their horses, so pretty much everybody rides everything. That’s great fun!  And Valegro truly is what he seems to be – he is the most special horse in the world, and I have been around a lot of special horses, international and otherwise. There is something about him that is so gentle. He is such an old soul.”

Despite Valegro’s allure, there is another horse that fills Bateson-Chandler’s heart. “One hundred percent I believe horses have a ‘person,’” she explained. “Alcazar is my special boy.” The Dutch-bred gelding affectionately known as “Lonzie,” owned by Jane Clark, has trained up the levels to Grand Prix with Bateson-Chandler. “When you spend every day with a horse, there is a bond you can’t describe; you have to feel it. We know each other so well. He has a lot of character and tries really hard, with enough spice that keeps every day interesting. He is back up and running after colic surgery last summer, and he feels better than ever.”

It takes years to develop the superior strength needed for international competition. Muscle development, plus the best feeding and supplement regimen, is crucial. Bateson-Chandler uses several different all-natural Omega Alpha products to keep Alcazar and her other equine partners in top shape. “Across the board, the horses like the Omega Alpha Gastra-FX. Omega Alpha’s philosophy is to create healthy horses by starting with the gut, and I totally agree. Every vet I speak to says to start with the intestines, the inside of the horse.” Bateson-Chandler’s supplement of choice for equine pain relief is Omega Alpha’s Antiflam. “Antiflam is amazing for my high performance horses working at the international level. I Iove the thought of taking inflammation out of their muscles in a completely natural way.”

As plans for the 2018 World Equestrian Games begin to form, Bateson-Chandler is first intent on the Wellington show series at hand. With her personal and professional mentor Olympian Debbie McDonald, she will choose Florida shows to compete in and will look toward next summer in Europe, as well. She will project backwards from the WEG, planning her qualifying period and where she needs to be month-by-month, season-by-season. “I always have a greater idea in mind of what I want to do, but again, you learn that things can change. If you wait until the year of the championships to plan, you are behind the eight ball. Everyone is planning now, to be honest, even towards the Tokyo Olympics. Absolutely, this is a very important season.”

To listen to her exciting interview on Horses in the Morning, go to Omega Alpha Equine Monday Edition at http://www.horsesinthemorning.com/11-14-2016-by-omega-alpha-equine-hellos-big-win-bateson-chandler-horse-nation-bucket-list/. For more information about Katherine Bateson-Chandler, visit www.kbcdressage.com.

Contact: Katherine Bateson-Chandler
chandlercarlos@aol.com
908-391-9096

US Dressage Team Earns Silver Medal in CDIO5* Aachen

The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team (Shannon Brinkman Photo)

Aachen, Germany – The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team had solid performances throughout the Lambertz Nations Cup at CHIO Aachen. Led by Chef d’Equipe Robert Dover, the team of Katherine Bateson-Chandler, Shelly Francis, Arlene “Tuny” Page, and Steffen Peters garnered the Silver medal with a total score of 437.139. Saturday’s final placing also clinched the inaugural FEI Nations Cup™ series title for the U.S. Germany had a dominant performance in the eight-nation field, taking the top three places in the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special and earning the Gold medal with a total of 492.598. Denmark finished with the Bronze medal on a total of 430.418.

“I could not be more proud of our team here in Aachen,” said Dover. “It’s great when you consider that there are some of the best countries in the world selecting their teams for the Rio Olympic Games here and our team placed second, a team who included our traveling reserve and other super combinations that are not on our Olympic team. I am so proud that of all of them they stepped up to the plate.”

Coming into this sixth and final Nations Cup event in the 2016 series, the U.S. needed to secure a placing ahead of Sweden, who was four points ahead of the U.S. on the leaderboard, to secure the title. Dover was extremely pleased with this weekend’s outcome. “We set a goal right from the beginning to win this series. Winning the first event in Wellington was exciting, but we anticipated that win. At Odense we had a nice showing with some of our greener combinations. Then going on to Compiègne, we thought, ‘Yes, we have a strong chance’, but when we won that it really got me excited and planning. After a second-place finish at Rotterdam the idea was to come to Aachen and place second or third and beat Sweden, but to actually place second with this group, that was really exciting.”

In Thursday’s CDIO5* Grand Prix, Peters (San Diego, Calif.) and Four Winds Farm’s Legolas 92 anchored the U.S. team with an excellent test, receiving a score of 77.324% from the Ground Jury of Maribel Alonso (MEX), Susanne Baarop (DEN), Stephen Clarke (GBR), Eduard de Wolff van Westerrode (NED), Peter Holler (GER), Thomas Lang (AUS), and Gary Rockwell (USA) to finish in fourth place. Francis (Loxahatchee, Fla.) and Patricia Stempel’s Doktor demonstrated their partnership with a steady test to score 72.200% for 12th place. Page (Wellington, Fla.) and her own Woodstock had a consistent test, marred only by a mistake in the two-tempi changes, scoring 68.971% to finish in 23rd place. Bateson-Chandler (Wellington, Fla.) was the first down centerline for the U.S. aboard Jane Clark’s Alcazar and had a solid test, aside from issues in the piaffe and collected walk, to post a score of 66.314% for 32d place.

The U.S. Team put forth a determined effort in Saturday’s CDIO5* Grand Prix Special to earn the Silver medal. Peters and Legolas 92 were the final ride of the day and they did not disappoint with impressive piaffe and passage work and lovely canter half-passes. The Ground Jury of Maribel Alonso (MEX), Stephen Clarke (GBR), Eduard de Wolff van Westerrode (NED), Peter Holler (GER), and Gary Rockwell (USA) rewarded the pair with a score of 76.627% to put them in fourth place.

Peters was very pleased with the maturity Legolas 92 exhibited, stating, “The first huge relief was when we came in, the announcer said a few things about Legolas, and he did not react whatsoever and that is the exact reason why we were here. I still felt like at Rotterdam, in the Grand Prix, that we were still a little on edge during the first minute of our test, but now he has proven that he can deliver for the team and this is exactly what the plan was. He did the piaffe movements very nicely, as well as his changes, and did beautiful canter pirouettes. Thursday and today the judges gave him a really high mark for his collected walk and that is a gigantic accomplishment. It’s those little things that most people who don’t know Legolas that well don’t appreciate, but I am just stocked about those tiny little things.”

Page and Woodstock had a much improved performance in the Grand Prix Special, producing an accurate and rhythmical test. They nailed their tempi-changes and demonstrated lovely passage work, scoring 71.451% to finish in 13th place.

Francis and Doktor gave another consistent performance to help the U.S. Team. They demonstrated solid piaffes and executed brilliant passage work. Francis and Doktor scored 70.647% to finish in 17th place.

Bateson-Chandler withdrew Alcazar from the Grand Prix Special following a case of colic on Friday.

Complete Rider Results

Complete Team Results

The top 18 individuals, including Francis, Page, and Peters, will move forward to Sunday’s Grand Prix Freestyle.

The U.S. is also being represented this week at CHIO Aachen in dressage, driving, and show jumping. On Thursday evening, the Hermès U.S. Show Jumping tied for the Silver medal with France in the Mercedes-Benz Nations Cup. On Saturday afternoon, the Land Rover U.S. Eventing Team finished in sixth place in the CICO3* Nations Cup. The U.S. Driving Team is in second place after the first phase, competition continues Saturday with the marathon phase, and concludes on Sunday with the cones. Find out more on USEFNetwork.com.

From the USEF Communications Department

Bateson-Chandler Joins Hester and Dujardin in Winners Circle at Hartpury Festival of Dressage LeMieux

Katherine Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar (Photo courtesy of JRPR)

Hartpury, England (July 12, 2016) – The hotly contested Hartpury Festival of Dressage LeMieux FEI Grand Prix this weekend came to a close with leading European riders Carl Hester and Charlotte Dujardin placing first and second, respectively, and USA’s Katherine Bateson-Chandler claiming third with a 70.22 percent. Bateson-Chandler, aboard Jane F. Clark’s Alcazar, was proud to take a victory lap behind her personal friends and stable-mates, Great Britain Olympians Hester and Dujardin.

The Hartpury Festival of Dressage, held in Hartpury, England on July 6-10, was Bateson-Chandler’s last competition before going on to represent The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team in the upcoming FEI Nations Cup competition at the World Equestrian Festival CHIO Aachen.

“I was really happy with Alcazar in the LeMieux Grand Prix,” Bateson-Chandler stated. “I tested him a bit by not letting him see the arena beforehand, so I knew he would be a bit more nervous, but I wanted to know he could handle the situation.”

Not only did Alcazar, a 10-year-old KWPN (Contango x Polin, Ferro) gelding, handle the situation, but rose to the occasion by challenging some of the host nation’s top contenders. Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar travel to Europe each summer to train with Hester, where they are stabled at his yard with fellow competitor Dujardin.

“He was really great. Carl [Hester] and I have been changing some things up in his training, so I wanted to see if I could achieve some of the training changes in a test environment. We still had a couple of smaller mistakes, but the feeling in general was lovely! It’s so nice to be able to compete with my friends Carl and Charlotte as there is so much support from everyone here!”

Now Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar are fully geared up for the CHIO Aachen Nations Cup – the Final FEI Nations Cup competition for the 2016 year – which runs July 12-17 in Aachen, Germany. Bateson-Chandler said, “It will be great to be able to ride in that amazing stadium in Aachen! It is most riders’ dream to compete there, so I am thrilled that my first time riding at this facility will be on Alcazar. We are so looking forward to it!”

Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar train with both U.S. Olympian and Developing Dressage Coach Debbie McDonald while in Wellington, Florida during the winter. When not competing on the international stage, Bateson-Chandler offers training and coaching services through her business KBC Dressage. Her worldwide Grand Prix experience ensures that her students – both human and equine – have the competitive edge necessary for success in the dressage ring. KBC Dressage offers training, lessons, clinics, and prospect selection for clients. For more information about Katherine Bateson-Chandler, visit www.kbcdressage.com.

Contact: Katherine Bateson-Chandler
chandlercarlos@aol.com
908-391-9096

Katherine Bateson-Chandler Named to US Dressage Team to Compete in CHIO Aachen Nations Cup

Photo courtesy of JRPR.

Aachen, Germany (June 30, 2016) – International Grand Prix dressage rider and trainer Katherine Bateson-Chandler has been named to The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team with Jane F. Clark’s Alcazar to compete in the FEI Nations Cup competition at the World Equestrian Festival CHIO Aachen in Aachen, Germany. Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar previously represented Team USA at the CDIO3* Odense Nations Cup competition in Odense, Denmark this past May.

The CHIO Aachen Nations Cup, to be held July 12-17, is the final FEI Nations Cup dressage competition for the 2016 year. The United States currently holds the top ranking among the 14 total nations vying for the winning spot. Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar will be joined by teammates Shelly Francis on Doktor, Arlene Page on Woodstock, and Steffen Peters on Rosamunde to complete the roster. Robert Dover will lead the group, serving once again as Chef d’Equipe for The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team.

“I am honored and thrilled to represent the USA as a member of the Nations Cup team at this competition,” Bateson-Chandler expressed. “My favorite thing is to be part of a team – there is nothing else like that feeling of camaraderie. It’s so fun to be able to support your teammates.”

Bateson-Chandler trains with U.S. Olympian and Developing Dressage Coach Debbie McDonald during the winter months in Wellington, Florida and travels to Europe each summer to compete and train with British Olympic Gold Medalist Carl Hester. Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar, a 10-year-old KWPN (Contango x Polin, Ferro) gelding, have been finessing their Grand Prix performances with competitions in Denmark so far this summer, including the Odense Horse Festival sponsored by ECCO and the Aalborg Dressage Event.

When not competing on the international stage, Bateson-Chandler offers training and coaching services through her business KBC Dressage. Her worldwide Grand Prix experience ensures that her students – both human and equine – have the competitive edge necessary for success in the dressage ring. KBC Dressage offers training, lessons, clinics, and prospect selection for clients. For more information about Katherine Bateson-Chandler, visit www.kbcdressage.com.

Contact: Katherine Bateson-Chandler
chandlercarlos@aol.com
908-391-9096

Katherine Bateson-Chandler Continues Successful European Tour in United Kingdom

Photo courtesy of Katherine Bateson-Chandler.

Hartpury, Great Britain (June 20, 2016) – United Kingdom native Katherine Bateson-Chandler returned to her roots this summer to compete with her top mount at some of Europe’s most prestigious dressage shows. Now an American citizen, Bateson-Chandler represented the U.S. on a Nations Cup team earlier this summer at the Odense Horse Festival sponsored by ECCO. Bateson-Chandler will continue going up against the best of the best in international dressage as she continues her European competition schedule.

This summer, Bateson-Chandler has been specifically focusing on the development of her talented Grand Prix partner Alcazar, a ten-year-old KWPN gelding (Cantango x Polin, Ferro) lovingly known as “Lonzie” and owned by Jane F. Clark. The pair has demonstrated impressive teamwork in the international arena and managed to pull off high scores representing the U.S. at Odense. The pair triumphed through some major distracting and daunting obstacles near the show ring, including a soccer game, a plastic bag attached to the speaker, passing trains, and a kids’ bouncing castle. Bateson-Chandler commented, “Lonzie was the anchor for the team, and I felt we were up for that challenge. He had the highest score of the U.S. horses. He felt really great in the challenging arena, and even though we still have work to do with building his confidence, he always keeps improving.”

For Bateson-Chandler, the best part of the Nations Cup competition was being part of her team. “It was an honor to represent the U.S. team and have such fantastic teammates. A huge thank you to Robert Dover (chef d’equipe) for being unendingly supportive and positive.” The pair followed this competition with another solid performance at the Aalborg Dressage Event in Aalborg, Denmark.

Now Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar will continue training in Europe and may compete in a few more competitions in the United Kingdom before returning to the United States. These potential upcoming competitions would take place at the five-day Hartpury Festival of Dressage, which includes CDI3*, CPEDI3*, British Dressage Young Pony Championships, and the Elite Stallions Prix St. Georges Young Horse Championship. Last summer, the pair successfully competed at this same event in the CDIO3* Nations Cup Grand Prix, and took home the highest-placing American spot. Bateson-Chandler is also considering returning to compete at Dressage at Hickstead, where last year they took a top ten placing in the CDIO3* and debuted their Grand Prix Freestyle to an impressive 71.350 percent.

Bateson-Chandler trains with British Olympic Gold Medalist Carl Hester during her time in Europe, who will also be competing in the Hartpury Festival of Dressage. “Carl’s is very much like home to us,” she said. “I have been training with him since 2007 and he and I have very similar thoughts on training and horsemanship. In addition to a structured training program, he believes in hacking the horses and lots of turnout, which is very important to me. On top of this, Carl is a great friend and incredible person who trains with total empathy for the horse. I could not be more pleased to return to his yard and compete with the best in the world in Europe.”

Bateson-Chandler offers training and coaching services through her business KBC Dressage. Her international Grand Prix experience ensures that her students – both human and equine – have the competitive edge necessary for success in the dressage ring. KBC Dressage offers training services, lessons, clinics, and prospect selection for clients. For more information about Katherine Bateson-Chandler, visit www.kbcdressage.com.

Contact: Katherine Bateson-Chandler
chandlercarlos@aol.com
908-391-9096

Katherine Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar to Represent Team USA at Nations Cup CDIO3* Odense

Photo courtesy of JRPR.

Wellington, Florida (April 22, 2016) – After completing a successful winter season at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival in Wellington, Florida, Grand Prix dressage rider and trainer Katherine Bateson-Chandler is headed to her summer home base in England. Paired with Jane F. Clark’s 11-year-old KWPN gelding Alcazar, Bateson-Chandler has consistently stayed in the top rankings during intense international competition, and plans for this summer to be no exception. Most exciting on the 2016 summer agenda is the pair’s next competition, where they will represent The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team at CDIO3* Odense on May 12-16 in Odense, Denmark.

“I am honored and thrilled to represent the USA as a member of the Nations Cup team in Odense,” Bateson-Chandler says. Led by mentor and Chef d’Equipe Robert Dover, Bateson-Chandler joins fellow teammates Susan Dutta, Jennifer Hoffmann, and Beatrice Marienau on the U.S. Dressage Team.

“My favorite thing is to be part of a team – there is nothing else like that feeling of camaraderie. It’s so fun to be able to support your teammates,” Bateson-Chandler adds.

Bateson-Chandler remarks on how the Wellington, Florida competition season was unifying for all dressage riders around the world by creating a sense of support and rapport amongst fellow competitors through the 12-week series. “This season I felt such an amazing sense of community between everybody in Wellington. I felt that much more than ever before, and that’s a very special thing.” She is excited to further this unifying energy during the Nations Cup competition.

While in England, Bateson-Chandler trains with British Olympic Gold Medalist Carl Hester. She will be preparing for four other competitions across Europe, as well. “Right now I want to keep a steady show and training schedule, without taxing my horse,” she explains.

Last summer, Bateson-Chandler wrapped up a successful European dressage tour with a strong 71.350 percent finish at the Comite Equestre De Saumur CDI 3* in Saumur, France. Before that the pair competed at the Dressage at Hickstead CDIO 3*, where they were the highest-placing American combination.

Bateson-Chandler offers training and coaching services through her business KBC Dressage. Her international Grand Prix experience ensures that her students – both human and equine – have the competitive edge necessary for success in the dressage ring. KBC Dressage offers training services, lessons, clinics, and prospect selection for clients. For more information about Katherine Bateson-Chandler, visit www.kbcdressage.com.

Contact: Katherine Bateson-Chandler
chandlercarlos@aol.com
908-391-9096

Katherine Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar Conclude Another Successful AGDF Season

Photo courtesy of JRPR.

Wellington, Florida (April 8, 2016) – Throughout the 12-week Adequan Global Dressage Festival series in Wellington, Florida, Katherine Bateson-Chandler and her partner Alcazar, an 11-year-old KWPN gelding owned by Jane F. Clark, asserted themselves as tough competition in the Grand Prix division. The two have risen to the top ranks on the leader board several times throughout the season with their funky freestyle test set to the tunes of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition,” Wild Cherry’s “Play That Funky Music,” and Bateson-Chandler’s favorite, Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars with “Uptown Funk.” Concluding the final week of the season, the groovy combination boosted Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar to the third place spot with a solid 72.050 percent in the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI 3* presented by Harmony Sporthorses.

“This week was also our best Grand Prix yet,” Bateson-Chandler commented about their 70.840 percent Grand Prix test earlier in the week. “This sport is tough and can really knock your confidence where you have such highs and lows. This season I feel such an amazing camaraderie between everybody, more than ever before. That’s a very special thing.”

Exhibiting distinguished improvements in both test execution and confidence in the international arena, Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar have risen under the pressures of intense competition and the exciting yet nerve rattling show environment. Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar’s Grand Prix Freestyle stole the spotlight during week ten, where they braved the blazing Floridian heat and captured a 72.425 percent for the pair’s first CDI victory of the 2016 season. Further adding to their accolades, the combination earned the highest American placing with a 73.450 percent in the Palm Beach Dressage Derby presented by Everglades Dressage.

“He’s still a green horse, but he keeps stepping up to the plate, and I’m really proud of him. He is becoming more and more comfortable in the ring,” Bateson-Chandler remarked.

As the Floridian temperature rises once again, Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar gear up to cross the pond to their home base in England for the summertime. While in England, the pair trains with British Olympic Gold Medalist Carl Hester. Last summer, Bateson-Chandler wrapped up a successful European dressage tour with a strong 71.350 percent finish at the Comite Equestre De Saumur CDI 3* in Saumur, France. Before that the pair competed at the Dressage at Hickstead CDIO 3*, where they were the highest-placing American combination.

Bateson-Chandler offers training and coaching services through her business KBC Dressage. Her international Grand Prix experience ensures that her students – both human and equine – have the competitive edge necessary for success in the dressage ring. KBC Dressage offers training services, lessons, clinics, and prospect selection for clients. For more information about Katherine Bateson-Chandler, visit www.kbcdressage.com.

Contact: Katherine Bateson-Chandler
chandlercarlos@aol.com
908-391-9096

Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar Brave the Heat, Dance to Victory in CDI3* Grand Prix Freestyle

Photo courtesy of JRPR.

Wellington, Florida (March 22, 2016) – Even through the blazing Floridian heat, International Grand Prix dressage rider and trainer Katherine Bateson-Chandler perfected her Grand Prix Freestyle test aboard Jane Clark’s Alcazar to a 72.425 percent and the pair’s first CDI victory of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival 2016 season. The two rose to the top of the leader board with a funky freestyle test set to the tunes of Stevie Wonder’s “Superstition,” Wild Cherry’s “Play that Funky Music,” and Bateson-Chandler’s favorite, Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars with “Uptown Funk.” The groovy songs complimented the pair, whose exciting freestyle has been bringing Adequan Global Dressage Festival attendees to their feet each week of the international winter show series.

Bateson-Chandler jumped on the chance to create her season’s freestyle for Alcazar with a myriad of upbeat songs, mixed with the help of Marlene Whitaker. “As soon as I heard ‘Uptown Funk,’ I was like, ‘I’m having that. Before someone else gets it, I’m having that,’” laughed Bateson-Chandler. With primary focus on “Uptown Funk,” Bateson-Chandler and Whitaker designed the entire freestyle around the crowd-pleasing song. “I really love my music because it’s so fun and fits Alcazar well.”

Even with the music on cue, Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar still had to face the unrelenting and challenging midafternoon heat. “This horse show is rough because it’s boiling out there,” she commented. “We are all doing the best we can, but at this point, we are cooking. I am glad that Alcazar kept doing his job.”

Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar, an 11-year-old KWPN gelding lovingly known as “Lonzie,” have had a distinguished campaign thus far this season, highlighted by being the top American placing in the Adequan Global Dressage Festival’s Palm Beach Dressage Derby CDI-W sponsored by Everglades Dressage. The pair has been improving in both test execution and confidence under the intense stresses of international level competition and the exciting, yet nerve rattling, ‘under the lights’ show environments. “He’s still a green horse and is getting used to having more atmosphere, which is why I keep putting him into more ‘under the lights’ situations. He keeps stepping up to the plate, and I’m really proud of him. He is becoming more and more comfortable in the ring,” Bateson-Chandler remarked. Now gearing up for the finale week of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival season, Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar have their confidence high and ambitions set on performing their very best.

Bateson-Chandler offers training and coaching services through her business KBC Dressage. Her international Grand Prix experience ensures that her students – both human and equine – have the competitive edge necessary for success in the dressage ring. KBC Dressage offers training services, lessons, clinics, and prospect selection for clients. For more information about Katherine Bateson-Chandler, visit www.kbcdressage.com.

Contact: Katherine Bateson-Chandler
chandlercarlos@aol.com
908-391-9096

Graves and Verdades Hit Season High Mark in AGDF 10 FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI 4*

Laura Graves and Verdades. Photos: ©SusanJStickle.

Katherine Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar Take Top Honors in FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI 3*

Wellington, FL – March 18, 2016 – Laura Graves (USA) and Verdades performed one of their best FEI Grand Prix Freestyle tests so far this season at the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF), earning a 79.475% to take a commanding win in the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI 4*, presented by Havensafe Farm. Competition at AGDF continues tomorrow with the FEI Grand Prix Special CDI 3*, presented by The Dutta Corporation, and the FEI Grand Prix Special CDI 4*, presented by Havensafe Farm.

Kasey Perry-Glass (USA) and Goerklintgaards Dublet followed Graves to the winner’s circle, finishing in second place in their first FEI Grand Prix Freestyle test together with a score of 75.750%. Juan Matute, Jr. (ESP) and Don Diego Ymas captured a well-deserved third place finish, receiving a 73.225%.

Graves and Verdades entered the Global International Arena at The Stadium with new freestyle choreography and music, but the same consistency and fluidity for which they’re now known. Graves has worked hard to find the right gear for “Diddy” this season, and it seems the pair is right on the mark moving into an important part of this year’s season.

“You know, with as much experience as this horse has now globally, he’s recently become very sensitive to the atmosphere. We do for him what we can in relaxation, but like I was saying after the Grand Prix on Wednesday, his confidence has to come from me,” explained Graves. “I have to give him the cues, and he needs to be certain of what I’m asking him. For tonight, I thought it was a big accomplishment personally, riding through that tension and having him step up to the plate.”

Watch Laura Graves and Verdades win the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle here!

The pair now has a mutual understanding of what the expectations are in the ring, and their partnership has continued to flourish. Graves and her own 2002 Dutch Warmblood gelding (Florett AS x Liwilarda) have become one of the most consistent Grand Prix pairs for Team USA over the past two years since their debut at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) in Caen, France, in 2014.

Both Graves and Perry-Glass have been in consistent training with U.S. dressage legend Debbie McDonald, with both riders referencing their strong relationship with her as a major factor in their performances so far this season.

“Debbie’s gift is that as a trainer, she can feel what you’re feeling as a rider. It takes a weight off of you that you don’t realize exists. She just gives you that feeling that you’re never alone and what you’re feeling is normal. You’re going to train through it and you’re going to, like she said to me tonight, come out on the other side. She just gives you this confidence to ride well,” explained Graves, regarding her time with McDonald.

Perry-Glass exited the ring in tears after completing her first FEI Grand Prix Freestyle aboard Goerklintgaards Dublet, a 2003 Danish Warmblood gelding (Diamond Hit x La Costa), that she has campaigned to the top of the Large Tour leaderboards all season long.

“I came out crying,” she acknowledged. “He’s just so awesome, and I’m so lucky to have him. We’re growing up together and respecting each other more and more. We’re learning from each other, and I couldn’t ask for any more.”

“I wasn’t really sure what to expect with him. Last year in the Intermediaire I Freestyle, he would get really hot and I pretty much had no control. I knew that once the music started, that was the horse I was going to have,” she said. “The consistent training with Debbie [McDonald] and the support from her has really helped his confidence and my confidence. He stayed with me the whole time and there are small places that we can clean up, but this is our first time out there and I’m so proud of him.”

As for their first freestyle beneath the lights, Perry-Glass felt their ride went just as planned and she’s motivated to continue their progress.

“Adrienne Lyle did the choreography. She’s been such a great friend and a great supporter of us. I worked with Tom Hunt, who does Charlotte Dujardin’s music. I’ve been working with him for a while, and we have a good relationship. I wasn’t sure what type of music I wanted for Dublet and I was like ‘Yes, this works!’ There are obviously some things that we will have to tweak and enhance, but I’ll start with a 75%,” she laughed.

The young Juan Matute, Jr. performed a brilliant and nearly mistake-free test about Don Diego Ymas, a 2003 Hanoverian gelding owned by Matute’s father, Juan Matute. In their best freestyle test to date this season, Matute was very pleased with their ride and felt the progress they have made this season has been defining in their career together.

“Little by little we’ve been building the confidence in the Grand Prix together and this is our second season at this level. It was a very exciting start to the season, but I think tonight is really the highlight so far,” commented Matute. “I’m very happy, and I’m very excited.”

“I enjoyed the test a lot. It was pretty much mistake-free, which is a big deal for us right now in our second year at Grand Prix,” continued Matute. “Being dynamic and being able to adapt to every situation is very important. What can I say, I’m sitting here next to these two beautiful riders, and it was just a great night.”

Betsy Juliano of Havensafe Farm, title sponsor for AGDF 10, is a successful businesswoman and horse enthusiast and has played an integral role in the growth of AGDF through the years. Drawing a strong parallel between the expansion of AGDF and the affirmation of a successful business, Juliano spoke to the successes the competition has seen this season and the promising future for the sport.

“I think that growing a business is really about evolution and that is what I see here at the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival, but also very importantly with all three riders here. I’ve had the privilege of watching them evolve and get better each year,” said Juliano. “That, to me, is my favorite part of being here in the winters, and I think that what Mark Bellissimo and his team have done to provide this opportunity for the riders and people like me to participate has been fantastic, and we appreciate it.”

Judge at C, Hans-Christian Matthiesen (DEN), was impressed with the top three rides and spoke candidly about the importance of AGDF to the global scale of dressage and its success in reaching young riders around the world.

“What we see tonight sitting at the press conference with these three very good young riders – this is what it is all about. This is dressage when it is at its best, in a super atmosphere that you’ve managed to create here at the Global show grounds. It’s so important to the sport,” he explained. “We can’t have enough of that. I’m so proud of you (three riders). You all did so well and have super nice horses. It’s good for the future of the sport when you have young ones coming up and just great combinations. It’s great fun and just a privilege to be here and judge.”

Adequan®, title sponsor of the entire circuit at AGDF, has maintained its position as a crucial partner and supporter of the venue since its inception. Allyn Mann of Adequan® senses a remarkable change in the sport and hopes new owners and riders will be motivated by the incredible performances seen so far this season at AGDF.

Keeping with tradition this season, Adequan® sponsored several owner awards during the evening, recognizing and appreciating the individuals who continue to help grow the sport through their support. Makenzie Rath, owner of Sholitaire ridden by Melissa Fladland, was presented with the AGDF 8 National Show High Score Award, for Sholitaire and Fladland’s score of 79.773%. Kylee Laurie was awarded with the AGDF 9 National High Score Award, for the performance of Harmony’s Duvall and Adrienne Lyle, who scored a 82.500%. Michael Collins, owner of Don Tignanello, ridden by Leida Collins-Strijk, was presented with the Prix St. Georges Owner Award for Collins-Strijk’s score of 72.289%. Laura Graves earned the Owner Award for the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle, recognizing her performance aboard Verdades. Graves, who also serves as her own groom, was presented with the Groom’s Initiative Award on behalf of Mark Bellissimo, CEO of Equestrian Sport Productions, LLC.

“The owners are the foundation of the sport, and we honor them for everything that they do. The investments they make, the patience and love they have, so that three beautiful riders and horses like the ones we have here tonight can show up and do some amazing things,” said Mann. “We’re so blessed to be a part of this whole environment and to see how this how festival has evolved.”

“On a night like tonight where Laura, Kasey, and Juan get to be on the podium, this is the future. But without the owners, none of this can happen. Let us not forget that they are the backbone of everything that happens here and when I think of our business, they’re the ones that keep us funded so that we can do what we do. Again, thank you to Betsy, and all of the owners, for everything you do,” he continued.

Katherine Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar Take Top Honors in FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI 3* presented by The Dutta Corporation

Katherine Bateson-Chandler (USA) and Alcazar, a 2005 Dutch Warmblood gelding owned by Jane Forbes Clark, found themselves atop the leaderboard in the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI 3*, presented by The Dutta Corporation, with a score of 72.425%. Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar have been hard at work this season, also training with Debbie McDonald, to improve their presence in the arena before heading back to England to compete in Europe this summer.

P. J. Rizvi (USA) and Breaking Dawn followed in second place with a 70.600%, while Anna Marek (USA) and Unico G collected third place honors with a 67.275%.

Katherine Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar
Katherine Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar

“In my last couple of freestyles I’ve had mistakes in my flying changes. I was bound and determined today, even if I had to turn myself inside out, to not have mistakes in my changes, which I managed to pull off,” laughed Bateson-Chandler. “I was really happy with that.”

“He’s going to have a couple of nice easy days before the next CDI. To be honest, when I’m not here at the show I don’t really ride him in the ring that much. I’m lucky to have a farm with a big track and a grand prix field,” explained Bateson-Chandler, on how she keeps Alcazar fresh and ready to compete. “We’ll have a little break after the next show here and then we’ll head back to England.”

P. J. Rizvi and Breaking Dawn earned their highest FEI CDI score this afternoon with their 70.600%, which Rizvi noted is a huge accomplishment for the pair, as this is their first competitive CDI season together.

“This is so far our biggest accomplishment together. For me, the heat is brutal, but for Edward, my horse, it’s the most amazing thing because my usual struggle with him is that he’s extremely forward and we have mistakes in the changes because he gets a little bit ahead of me,” she said. “Today I felt like he was a bit more backed off, and he was really attentive to me. I was super thrilled today.”

Rizvi rides to the same music that her trainer, Ashley Holzer, used with Breaking Dawn at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, England. It is very sentimental for Rizvi. She said, “What we did, because Edward had a long rest period after the Olympics, is we changed the choreography to be more difficult, but used the same music. I love really funky music, but I tend to dance too much during the test, so I need very stable music. I think it suits him, and the bagpipes really accent his piaffe and passage.”

Traveling down from Ocala, FL to compete at AGDF, Marek and Unico G are finding a rhythm, which has left Marek feeling very positive about their progress and direction for the rest of the season.

“We come down about four hours to show here for the weekend and then go home. We definitely struggled with the heat a bit this week, but today I was really proud of him because I felt like I had more horse than yesterday,” she commented. “I swear though, the music always pumps him up and he’s ready to go. We had fun riding today’s freestyle, and we just made it a little bit more difficult so there were a few little bobbles.”

“I rode my first freestyle on Unico. Over the last year, we got comfortable with that choreography while I learned to ride the freestyle. We just started to change it a bit more difficult. I wanted something a bit dramatic for him. We’ve had a long road and to me it tells a great story,” she continued.

Competition at AGDF continues tomorrow with the FEI Grand Prix Special CDI 3*, presented by The Dutta Corporation, and the FEI Grand Prix Special CDI 4*, presented by Havensafe Farm. For more information on AGDF, please visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.

About the Adequan Global Dressage Festival:

The Adequan Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) is one of the world’s largest international and national dressage circuits featuring 7 FEI Dressage events, including a 5* and the only FEI Nations’ Cup Series CDIO in the Western Hemisphere. The AGDF offers more than $650,000 in prize money for the seven international competitions, making it one of the richest circuits in the world. The Stadium at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center facility includes the Van Kampen covered arena (made possible by Kimberly and Frederic Boyer and family) and four outdoor arenas with world-class footing, 200 permanent stalls, and a VIP seating area.

Please visit
www.globaldressagefestival.com
www.pbiec.com
or call 561-793-5867 for more information.

Adequan Global Dressage Festival is located at
The Stadium at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center
13500 South Shore Blvd, Wellington, Florida 33414

Carly Weilminster
Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
info@jenniferwoodmedia.com

Bateson-Chandler Takes Top American Placing at Palm Beach Dressage Derby Grand Prix Freestyle CDI-W

Photo courtesy of JRPR.

Wellington, Florida (March 7, 2016) – International Grand Prix dressage rider and trainer Katherine Bateson-Chandler and her partner, 11-year-old KWPN gelding Alcazar, owned by Jane F. Clark, have had a notable campaign so far this year in the Grand Prix division throughout the Adequan Global Dressage Festival. Their efforts came to fruition this past week during the Palm Beach Dressage Derby CDI-W, sponsored by Everglades Dressage. The pair emerged as the highest placing American duo in the Grand Prix Freestyle with a 73.45 percent.

After performing an energetic and striking freestyle test, Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar sat in the third place spot behind Danish riders Lars Petersen with Mariett and Mikala Gundersen with My Lady. Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar have been steadily improving throughout the 2016 winter competition series held in Wellington, Florida, and Bateson-Chandler was very pleased with her mount’s progress.

“He was quite nervous in the warm-up, and he’s been pretty solid the past couple of times that I’ve gone under the lights,” said Bateson-Chandler after her impressive ride e in front of a packed house at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival. “It threw me a little bit in the warm-up, but he came into the ring and actually is learning that it is his safe place, and he settles,” she said. “He’s still a green horse and is getting used to having more atmosphere, which is why I keep putting him into more ‘under the lights’ situations. He keeps stepping up to the plate, and I’m really proud of him.”

At last year’s Palm Beach Dressage Derby CDI-W, Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar took first place, which marked the horse’s breakthrough performance in the Grand Prix level. That 2015 CDI class was their first, after competing successfully in the national Grand Prix classes throughout that winter series.

Bateson-Chandler plans to compete with Alcazar in the remaining two CDIs at the 2016 Adequan Global Dressage Festival, which will occur during Week 10 and Week 12.

“It’s a long season here, and you can get greedy with so many international shows. I have taken a couple of CDIs off, so he’s going to do the last two that are here because they’re spread out a bit more,” Bateson-Chandler noted.

After the completion of the 2016 winter competition series, the pair plans to return to England for the summer, where they will train with coach and mentor Carl Hester.

Bateson-Chandler offers training and coaching services through her business KBC Dressage. Her international Grand Prix experience ensures that her students – both human and equine – have the competitive edge necessary for success in the dressage ring. KBC Dressage offers training services, lessons, clinics, and prospect selection for clients. For more information about Katherine Bateson-Chandler, visit www.kbcdressage.com.

Contact: Katherine Bateson-Chandler
chandlercarlos@aol.com
908-391-9096