US Finishes Second in FEI Nations Cup Dressage Series
Hickstead, England – The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team clinched the bronze medal after having solid performances at the FEI Nations Cup CDIO3* Hickstead. Chef d’Equipe Robert Dover guided the U.S. team of Katherine Bateson-Chandler, Susan Dutta, Chase Hickok, and Charlotte Jorst to deliver quality tests throughout the three days of competition. The U.S. team earned bronze with a score of 421.920, finishing behind gold medal-winning France with a score of 424.811 and silver medal-winning the Netherlands with a score of 424.053. In addition, the FEI Nations Cup Dressage Series came to a close at Hickstead, with the U.S. finishing second behind Sweden and ahead of Denmark.
“I was very proud once again of our U.S. Nations Cup athletes here in Hickstead. Under extremely difficult weather conditions, our riders rode with class and did their very best,” said Dover. “Our goal this year was not to simply do well, which we did by winning in Rotterdam and placing second in Aachen, along with other results in the series, but to show off both our fabulous veterans as well as fresh, new human and equine faces. We are all very proud of our second-place finish in the series, the only nation to have supported every competition in it!”
The competition began on Friday with all team members performing the CDIO3* Grand Prix Test. Hickok (Wellington, Fla.) and Hyperion Farm, Inc.’s Sagacious HF were the top U.S. finishers in second place with a score of 71.640%. Jorst (Reno, Nev.) and Kastel Denmark’s Kastel’s Nintendo were not far behind in fourth place with a score of 70.880%. Bateson-Chandler (Wellington, Fla.) and Jane Clark’s Alcazar had a nice test to score 69.320% to finish in 15th place, while Dutta (Wellington, Fla.) and Tim Dutta Inc.’s Currency DC received a score of 63.640% to finish in 26th place.
On Saturday, two U.S. combinations competed in the CDIO3* Grand Prix Special with both of their scores counting towards the team score. Hickok and the 1999 Dutch Warmblood gelding had another stellar performance to finish third with a score of 70.843%. Bateson-Chandler and the 2005 Dutch Warmblood gelding delivered a great test to finish eighth with a score of 69.412%.
The Nations Cup came to its conclusion on Sunday with the CDIO3* Grand Prix Freestyle. The remaining two U.S. combinations competed, and the best score counted for the team score. Jorst and the 2003 Dutch Warmblood stallion put forth a good effort to score 69.825% to finish seventh. Dutta and the 2000 Oldenburg gelding performed their first freestyle of the year and received a score of 66.625% to finish in 12th place.
Hickstead, England – The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team takes aim at the FEI Nations Cup™ CDIO3* Hickstead from July 27-30. Chef d’Equipe Robert Dover will guide the U.S. team of Katherine Bateson-Chandler, Susan Dutta, Chase Hickok, and Charlotte Jorst. Riding against three other teams, the U.S. combinations will compete in the following order:
Susan Dutta and Currency DC: Dutta (Wellington, Fla.) and Tim Dutta Inc.’s Currency DC are solid international competitors, having spent numerous summers competing in Europe. In 2016, they finished third in the Grand Prix Freestyle at CDI3* Deauville and fifth in the Grand Prix Freestyle at CDI4* Cappeln. Dutta and the 2000 Oldenburg gelding had top-ten finishes at the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) in March.
Katherine Bateson-Chandler and Alcazar: Bateson-Chandler (Wellington, Fla.) with Jane Clark’s Alcazar began 2017 with top-four finishes during the winter circuit at the AGDF. Bateson-Chandler and the 2005 Dutch Warmblood gelding began their summer in Europe by representing the U.S. in the FEI Nations Cup™ CDIO4* Uggerhalne. The pair will strive for a solid performance in their second Nations Cup appearance of the year.
Charlotte Jorst and Kastel’s Nintendo: Jorst (Reno, Nev.) and Kastel Denmark’s Kastel’s Nintendo had a very successful start to 2017 with several top-three finishes in the spring. Jorst and the 2003 Dutch Warmblood stallion earned top-ten finishes at Rotterdam and Falsterbo. They joined Hickok and Sagacious HF on the Falsterbo team and intend to have a great performance at Hickstead.
Chase Hickok and Sagacious HF: Hickok (Wellington, Fla.) and Hyperion Farm, Inc.’s Sagacious HF will compete in their second Nations Cup after having a strong showing at CDIO5* Falsterbo a few weeks ago. They finished second in the Grand Prix Freestyle and fourth in the Grand Prix at Falsterbo. Hickok and the 1999 Dutch Warmblood gelding hope to continue their momentum as they head into Hickstead.
Find out more about FEI Nations Cup CDIO3* Hickstead and watch it live on EquestrianPRO.tv beginning Friday at 7:15 a.m. EST.
By Kathleen Landwehr, US Equestrian Communications Department
Alix Szepesi and Majco Thunder’s Hattrick Triumph in FEI Intermediaire-1 Freestyle CDI 3*
Wellington, FL – February 23, 2014 – CDI 3* competition wrapped up on Sunday afternoon at the seventh week of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival (AGDF). After a full week of CDIO and CDI 3* competition, the FEI Intermediaire-1 Freestyle, presented by Peacock Ridge, crowned its winner Sunday morning. Competition concluded for the week with the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle, presented by Stillpoint Farm.
Competition for AGDF 8 will resume on February 28 for the Palm Beach Dressage Derby CDI-W. The feature event of the week, the FEI World Cup Qualifier Grand Prix Freestyle, will be highlighted on the evening of Saturday, March 1.
The FEI Grand Prix Freestyle was a truly international class, seeing riders from Canada, the United States, Germany, Georgia, Brazil, and Italy. American Susan Dutta and her own Currency DC, a 14-year-old Oldenburg gelding, emerged victorious from the class with a score of 71.950%. Canadian Jacqueline Brooks rode to second place with D Niro on a score of 71.275%. Maria Kaldewei (GER) rounded out the top three with a score of 68.625% aboard Die Suesse.
Dutta was very pleased with the improvements she saw in her test after making some adjustments to her choreography. “I’ve done this choreography a few times this year, and I kept having mistakes in the changes. We were finally like, ‘Let’s change the lines to make it so that we can have some success of a clean trip.’ And it was good. It worked. So that was a nice feeling,” Dutta explained.
She continued, “I’m just right now trying to get clean, technical tricks. That’s a huge success for me. I’ve never been a fancy choreography rider. I always have great music, but I like to be a safe rider.”
Dutta’s “Slumdog Millionaire”-themed music was a natural choice, given her husband Tim’s Indian heritage. She was particularly drawn to the lyrics, “jai ho,” that repeat through her routine; they mean “blessings” in Hindi.
Of her choreography, Dutta commented, “I love the pirouettes on the short end [of the ring] because you can really ride into them. For me, it fixes the habit that I love to over prepare, and I just don’t have the time, so they’re always good. I love the ending, that fan in the piaffe. I could do those all day long.”
She continued, “I don’t do anything too crazy tricky because the horse is pretty flamboyant in those movements, so you want [the judges and audience] to just be able to watch and enjoy him and not be too radical in the movements.”
Second place finisher Brooks tried out a new freestyle with D Niro, which she felt went quite well. Her biggest victory was reaching a breakthrough in the gelding’s self-carriage. “He’s just mature now. He knows his job now. I finally feel like the fitness and the strength and understanding are all at the same level,” Brooks remarked.
She elaborated, “This season, it’s all about his strength and his self-carriage. That’s a scary thing when you start saying to them in the ring, ‘Now you go ahead and try to do this on your own,’ and you try to give them a little bit less help so you can push them uphill. That I was extremely pleased with today.”
A unique challenge of the AGDF for Brooks is tweaking the timing of her choreography to make up for the fact her horse moves differently on the footing of The Stadium. “On this amazing footing, it’s different timing than in a normal sand ring. They stay on the surface a bit more here, they gain a bit more ground. You see people will usually finish a bit ahead of their music on this footing,” Brooks described.
Brooks actually sees the difference in timing as an advantage with her new choreography, not a hindrance. “I’m really happy with where I’m using up that music. I can make it a bit more difficult. I can take my half passes really to the walls and back, which increased the degree of difficulty,” Brooks expressed.
Alix Szepesi (USA) and Majco Thunder’s Hattrick topped the FEI Intermediaire Freestyle-1 earlier on Sunday with a score of 68.542%. Second place went to fellow American Bent Jensen and Saracen, who earned a 67.833%. Sonia Zugel of Ireland rounded out the top three with Ungaro with a 67.083%.
Szepesi was quite pleased to see “Hattrick,” a 13-year-old Knabstrupper gelding co-owned by Szepesi and Michelle Doucette, coming along nicely during his first year the CDI level.
“He came in, he had good energy. He was on the aids. I think we were right on the music. It was a lot of fun. I got a little over eager in one of the canter pirouettes. We were going into our first canter pirouette and I was thinking ‘This is great!’ and I didn’t keep him connected enough, so he kind of had a little fumble coming out of it,” Szepesi explained.
She continued, “Our first line of two tempis was really good; I think the three [tempis] were right on. I think I hit the music like right on. We had a little bobble in our second line of two tempis, but he felt great and it just flowed with the music.”
Hattrick enjoys his freestyle music so much, he’s memorized all of the markers in the music to transition between movements. Szepesi enjoys feeling him light up in anticipation of the next element of choreography.
Szepesi described that managing Hattrick in a CDI environment outside of the ring has been a big adjustment for the gelding, with the biggest test being how Hattrick would react to staying in FEI stabling instead of going home each day to several hours of turn-out after a National show.
“I really believe in turn-out and he’s used to getting turn-out like four or six hours a day, even down here in Wellington. We found a place that has enough turn-out for the horses to go out and have grass and just be normal. What we’d done in the past [for National shows], we just put him the trailer, did the class, and went home,” Szepesi described.
Szepesi credited groom Emily LaGrave for making the smooth transition into CDI possible. “I have a wonderful groom, Emily LaGrave. She stays with him all day. She walks him, and she grazes him, so he’s not just standing in the stall. It makes a huge difference,” Szepesi expressed.
She continued, “She’s been doing an incredible job with keeping him sparkling white. That is all Emily! She gets a lot of compliments on that.”
Hattrick’s gleaming white coat and spotted skin tends to turn heads amongst the sea of bay and chestnut horses often seen ringside. Szepesi admitted she didn’t even know the Knabstrupper breed existed before watching a video of Hattrick, and the gelding simply happened to fall in her lap.
“A Danish dealer that we had worked with before just sent videos. I think he must have just had a video of this horse and he sent to everyone he knew, so we just got this video at the barn one day. We looked at the video and pretty much everybody in the beginning said, ‘No, he’s got spots,'” Szepesi described.
But a few weeks later, now co-owner Doucette came back to Szepesi to ask about the horse with the spots. The video had struck a chord with her and despite hearing he had already been sold, Doucette urged Szepesi to reach out to the dealer.
“We called the dealer and he said, ‘As a matter of fact, the guy’s sponsorship fell through and I have the horse back in the barn now.’ It’s one of those things that was kind of meant to be,” Szepesi recalled.
The only trait that stands out more than his looks is Hattrick’s remarkably laid-back attitude on the showgrounds. He stood calmly while being adorned with his blue ribbon and winner’s cooler before quietly walking into the ring for the awards presentation. He’s so quiet Szepesi doesn’t even worry about putting protective wraps or boots on him for the victory lap.
“He’s always been like that! The woman that bred him [Ingrid Mikkelsen] actually did some Monty Roberts [natural horsemanship] stuff,” Szepesi commented. “She sent us some foal pictures and there were ones of him with the big ball and walking under tarps.”
Szepesi will continue to compete Hattrick in the remaining CDI competitions of the AGDF. By the end of the season, she hopes to ride him in an Intermediaire A class to continue to move towards an FEI Grand Prix debut.
Tanya Strasser-Shostak added another blue ribbon to her already impressive haul from AGDF 7 after winning the FEI Young Rider Freestyle, presented by Engel & Völkers. Strasser-Shostak and Action Tyme topped the class with a 70.292%.
Competition for the AGDF resumes Friday, March 28, for the Palm Beach Dressage Derby CDI-W presented by Martha W. Jolicoeur and Maria Mendelsohn of Illustrated Properties.
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 8 FEI Dressage events, including a 5* and the only FEI Nations’ Cup Series CDIO in the Western Hemisphere. The AGDF offers more than $400,000 in prize money for the six 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 for the International Arena fully catered for relaxing and having an enjoyable experience.
Herslow and Rosmarin Take Second Win in Small Tour
Wellington, FL – March 16, 2013 – The WEF Dressage Classic, CDI 3* presented by Today’s Equestrian & Fellows at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) continued today with classes for the Large Tour and Small Tour. Susan Dutta and Currency DC won the FEI Grand Prix Special, while Kim Herslow and Rosmarin won their second class in a row in the FEI Intermediaire-1. The CDI 3* and National competition wrap up with tomorrow’s classes. The next show for the AGDF is the Wellington CDI 5* presented by Diamante Farms on April 4-7, 2013.
The judges for today’s FEI Grand Prix Special were: Carlos Lopes at E, Janet Foy at H, Sandy Phillips at C, Ulrike Nivelle at M, and Bo Ahman at B.
Dutta and Currency DC won the class with a score of 69.396%. Coming in second place was Susan Jaccoma (USA) on Wadamur with a score of 66.063%. Jill Irving (CAN) and Degas 12 were third after they received a score of 65.083%.
Dutta has ridden Currency DC, a 13-year-old Oldenburg gelding by Clintino x Classiker, since she bought him as a two and a half year old. The long journey has also been one of learning.
Dutta explained, “It’s getting much better. It’s not without effort; I’m always trying to ride better. I have fabulous trainers and we know we have a good horse. It’s just a matter of trying to ride it well. First we had to get him going well – this takes time – and then get us together in the ring, and me confident. I have to really believe. This horse has only been ridden by me. Now I’m starting to believe in myself. I think he really likes me now and likes the way I’m riding him. There’s more in there. This is a super horse. I just have not ridden him to his potential, but I’m getting there. That feels really good. To me, this is a huge step in the right direction.”
Dutta trains with Juergen and Christoph Koschel when she travels to Europe in the summer and when they can come to the U.S. She noted, “I knew I needed a grounds person in America. I’m working with Nicholas Fyffe. I owe him a big thank you.”
The pair started at the grand prix level three years ago, but there were a few bumps in the road with injuries since then. “This is the first season that he’s starting to look like a real grand prix horse,” Dutta said. “He doesn’t look green anymore. It takes time.”
Of her test today, Dutta described, “The beginning is so amazing with the passage, extended, passage, extended. I knew I got some points there. I knew I was going to need them. That’s my history is to get way ahead there. It’s a numbers game, so that if my walk wasn’t good or if I made a little canter mistake, I still was higher in the score. I knew in the beginning when he was so easy and on my aids that it was good. I knew he felt good. He was good out here (in the warm-up). I wasn’t nervous. I’m feeling more confident. I think that’s transferring to him.”
Speaking of her victory, she said, “For me, winning is great. More than anything though, just riding him well and getting the points was important to me. Confidence builds on confidence and I’m hoping I can layer myself with more confidence and ride really well.”
Two in a Row for Herslow and Rosmarin
At only eight years old, Rosmarin is proving that his talent is here to stay. The Hanoverian gelding by Rosentanz x Weltmeyer, ridden by Kim Herslow of Stockton, NJ, won the FEI Intermediaire-1 class with a score of 71.026%. Second place went to Christilot Boylen (CAN) and Dio Mio with a score of 70.974%, while Caroline Roffman (USA) and Her Highness O placed third on a score of 69.421%.
Herslow explained that from yesterday to today, her horse felt even better. “I felt like he was even more there for me today. Not that he wasn’t yesterday, but the through-ness was more solid today with him. He’s letting me really ride him in the ring and staying completely with me, which is a really nice feeling. I can push and he never worries about what I’m asking for. Even if it’s not the right thing. He still does it and then comes back and fixes it for me. This is his third I-1 ever, so I’m just thrilled that he’s coming out and that we can still make his canter so much better. We’re just starting and it’s really awesome,” she remarked.
Of her test, she said, “His trot tour is always pretty incredible. He’s so rideable in his trot and his fluidity is so nice to ride. His half passes are always a strong point. His walk felt really good to me today. We still have to get our canter stronger. He’s a really long horse so we have some strength to work on, and getting more jump in the canter, which will help the pirouettes and the changes. It’ll help the whole canter tour. There’s still a lot of room to improve, so it’s exciting to know that. He’s still just at the very beginning of his career here.”
Despite just starting to earn accolades, Herslow felt that Rosmarin had talent to start with. “He definitely had talent. It’s just been a very slow build-up from a young horse, in a sense that I didn’t do a lot of fancy work with him. I did a lot of basic gymnastic, body-building work with him. I take a lot of time to develop a relationship with him and get his trust. I think that’s what makes us so harmonious,” she explained. “It’s an investment in my time, but it’s so worth it because you see the difference in the ring. He comes out the same every day and he’s a super amazing horse. I’m lucky to own him and feel extremely grateful.”
Herslow is excited that they still have another class in which to compete tomorrow. It will be the pair’s second time ever in the I-1 Freestyle. “I need to get a little sharper in my preparations for certain things, so we still had a few little mistakes, but he was listening. He did exactly what I asked him for. I’m hoping to clean that up for the freestyle tomorrow, which is a really fun freestyle. I’m excited to ride that tomorrow,” she said.
The top United States Para-Equestrian today was Mary Jordan, who rode Sebastian to a score of 66.071% in the FEI Para-Equestrian Individual Champion Test Grade IV. The awards presentations for all of the grades’ team and individual winners will be held tomorrow.
Winning both yesterday’s and today’s FEI Junior classes was Paula Matute (ESP) on Escritor de Ymas II. They received a score of 64.595% in yesterday’s team class and a 64.026% in today’s Individual class.
The WEF Dressage Classic CDI 3* presented by Today’s Equestrian & Fellows concludes tomorrow with the FEI Intermediaire-1 Freestyle along in the CDI competition. The Para-Equestrians will also perform their freestyles, while the Florida Youth Championships presented by Dressage4kids and sponsored by PanaCavallo have their final rounds in the main International Arena.
The Adequan Global Dressage Festival (GDF) is one of the world’s largest international and national dressage circuits featuring five CDIs, including a 5*, the first non-championship CDIO Nations’ Cup in the Western Hemisphere, and nine U.S. national events. The Adequan GDF is offering more than $275,000 in prize money for the five international competitions making it one of the richest circuits in the world. In addition to the CDIs with national competitions, the Adequan GDF will feature six separate national shows to be held at the Stadium section of the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) show grounds. The Adequan GDF encompasses almost 60 acres of the former Palm Beach Polo Grounds. The 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 for the International Arena fully catered for relaxing and having an enjoyable experience.
First Founding Sponsors: Matt Varney, Chris and Rob Desino, Wellington Equestrian Realty; Janet and William Richardson Pearson, Chesapeake Dressage Institute of Annapolis, MD; Devon and Terri Kane, Diamante Farm; Joe and Gaye Scarpa, Magnolia Farm; Tuny Page and Family, Stillpoint Farm; and Kimberly and Frederic Boyer, United States P.R.E. Association
Founding Sponsors: Ashley Holzer and Diane Fellows, Today’s Equestrian; Bethany Peslar, Everglades Dressage; Betsy Juliano, Havensafe Farm; Carol and Rebecca Cohen, Two Swans Farm LLC; Janne Rumbough, MTICA Farm; Mike & Roz Collins; Suhail and PJ Rizvi, Peacock Ridge; and Tim and Susie Dutta, The Dutta Corp.
Corporate Sponsors: Brown Distributing, Champion Equine Insurance, Charles Owen, Chronicle of the Horse, Custom Saddlery, Der Dau, Dever Golf Carts, Equestrian Services International (ESI), Elite Equestrian Magazine, European Dressage Connection, Gold Coast Feed & Supply, Horse Of Course, Horseware Ireland, Interagro Lusitanos, Moet Hennessy USA, Nespresso USA, Paddock Cakes, Palm Beach Equine Clinic, Pennfield, Piaffe Performance, Premier Equestrian, Ritz-Carlton, Palm Beach, Rolex, Sanctuary at PBIEC, Show Chic, Sidelines Magazine, World Equestrian Brands
Raleigh, NC (June 11, 2011) – International dressage rider Susan Dutta, a member of the Gold Medal 2007 Pan American Games team, rode into the winner’s circle at the 2011 CDI3*Y/J Capital Dressage Classic in Raleigh. Dutta and her long-time equine partner, Currency DC, competed in the Grand Prix ring, winning the Grand Prix with a score of 66.319% and the Grand Prix Freestyle with a 71.025%.
“I was excited to win at Raleigh. It is a show I have gone to for years and I have always enjoyed it,” Dutta said. “This was the third show back for Currency DC and he is feeling fitter and more expressive than ever.”
Dutta, who splits her time between Tuny Page’s Stillpoint Farm in Wellington, Florida and training in Germany, won the USEF/Markel Young Horse Dressage National 5-Year-Old Championships in 2005 and the 6-Year-Old Championships in 2006 on Currency DC, an Oldenburg gelding. The pair made their debut in the Grand Prix ring in 2010.
“Currency DC had some beautiful trot work, passage and pirouettes during his tests in Raleigh. I will now be working on having a mistake free test and standing in halts,” Dutta said, adding that Currency DC is a sweet horse to be around. “He loves to be kissed and cuddled. I feel blessed to have this talented horse in my life and I enjoy every ride and every show with him.”