Tag Archives: Wellington Nations Cup

Parra and Van The Man Dance to the Top of FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDIO3* for United States

Dr. Cesar Parra and Van the Man during the Nations Cup CDI 3*. (Photo courtesy of SusanJStickle.com)

Wellington, FL (April 18, 2013) – Dr. Cesar Parra, whose bridles have been known to sport red, white and blue brow bands, had patriotism riding high over the April 13-14 weekend during America’s only event of its kind, the Wellington Nations Cup CDIO/CDI3*, presented by Stillpoint Farm at The Stadium at the Global Dressage Festival show grounds.  On Saturday, Parra clinched the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDIO3* with a 74.375% score on Van The Man from judges Evi Eisenhardt (E), Maribel Alonso (H), Anne Gribbons (C), Linda Zang (M), and Joan Macartney (B).

The former Colombian 2004 Olympic as well as 2002 and 2006 World Equestrian Games veteran, who became an American citizen in 2008 and represented the US on the Gold medal-winning 2011 Pan American Games dressage squad, was also a member of Friday evening’s Nations Cup reserve champion Team USA 2.

On the combined strength of their Grand Prix Freestyle and Sunday’s FEI Grand Prix Special (72.208%) scores,put Parra in runner-up position in the Individual Rider Standings and top USA Individual rider. Van The Man is an 11-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Obelisk x Landjoker) acquired for Parra by sponsors Sarah and Michael Davis in 2011.

“I was very excited to take part in my first Nations Cup and to medal as a team and as an individual,” said Parra. “I’ve been grateful for the opportunity to represent my country. I’d like to thank my owners, wife, groom, and Katie Riley, my eyes on the ground, and also to the USEF for selecting me as a member of the team. This horse has improved so much. I love him.”

“I am so proud of my husband, so proud of all the Piaffe Performance riders, and all the members of our team. It has been an amazing weekend and season,” said Parra’s wife, Marcela Ortiz.

Tuny Page of Stillpoint Farm praised the Nations Cup format and its contributions:  “One crucial thing about this competition involves the opportunity to expose small tour horses to this kind of atmosphere and a patrons’ tent. That’s really important in the development of international sport. I hope that people in the world of dressage are paying attention to what’s happening here because it’s fantastic and will continue to improve.”

As stylish outside the ring as within it, Parra thanked Page and the pillars of the dressage world that made a week-long dressage event like this possible in Florida:  “Thank you so much [to Page].  She’s not only a great rider with wonderful horses, but she’s always trying to help the sport.  It means a lot to all of us to have this place and I hope we can continue to enjoy it because it’s really a pleasure to come and ride here.  We are so grateful.”

Parra reserved his best praise for last, for his four-legged partner, Van The Man.  “He was right on it, from the very first step.  He’s been, as most of my colleagues know, a ‘clown’ to say the least!  He’s humbled me more than a couple of times, so I just keep on working and today, he said ‘Okay, I’ll do it.’  It was amazing from that first step.  It’s exciting to do the best you can and have it work out.  I’m just so happy that I cannot describe it.  I’m really, really grateful.”

As the Piaffe Performance team leaves Florida for its Whitehouse Station, NJ, facility, all eyes are on the horizon line for Normandy and the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.

“My goal,” Parra concluded, “is to really make him my partner.  I believe in him.  I think he’s a world-class horse.  It’s just a matter of getting him to trust me, to follow me, to believe, to become a great horse.”

Follow Van The Man and Cesar Parra’s season together, and learn more about Piaffe Performance and its stellar stable of dressage prospects at www.piaffe-performance.com.

For more information contact:
Dr. Cesar Parra

David Marcus Wraps Up Successful Winter Season

David Marcus and Don Kontes led Team Canada 1 to a bronze medal at the CDIO3* Wellington Nations’ Cup. Photo by Sue Stickle.

Wellington, Florida – Canadian Olympian David Marcus of Campbellville, ON, wrapped up a highly successful winter season with a bronze medal performance as part of Team Canada 1 in the CDIO3* Wellington Nations’ Cup held April 11 to 14 as part of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL.

Riding Don Kontes, a 13-year-old Swedish Warmblood gelding owned by Deborah Kinzinger Miculinic, Marcus put in an exciting performance in the Grand Prix on Friday, April 12 to help lead Canada to the podium.  His teammates included Christilot Boylen riding Dio Mio, Brittany Fraser aboard All In and Evi Strasser with Action Tyme.  Team USA 1 claimed the gold while Team USA 2 took home silver in the only Nations’ Cup competition held outside of Europe.

“It has been a tremendous season for both me and my students,” said Marcus.  “The five months we’ve spent in Florida have gone by so quickly.  I couldn’t be more pleased with how successful all of the horses were this winter.”

Marcus’s bronze medal performance was the latest in the long string of successes he has enjoyed over the winter competition season.  Riding Chrevi’s Capital, a 13-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding also owned by Kinzinger Miculinic, Marcus topped the North American World Cup League after dominating the CDI-W Wellington Dressage in February.  In the Grand Prix, he topped a starting field of 13 horses with a score of 70.34%, edging out Swedish Olympian Tinne Vilhelmson for the win.  In the Grand Prix Freestyle, he performed his new musical program for just the second time in competition, earning an impressive score of 74.45% from the five-member panel of international judges to claim the top spot once again during the World Cup qualifying event.

Marcus and Chrevi’s Capital also received an invitation to the prestigious CDI5* World Dressage Masters Palm Beach in January where they were the sole Canadian representatives to advance to the Grand Prix Freestyle, placing sixth overall.

Don Kontes also proved to be a reliable partner for Marcus, with the pair winning the Grand Prix Freestyle during the CDI3* Sunshine Challenge in January on their score of 70.825% and finishing second in the Grand Prix.

“Winning the World Cup qualifier with Capital was definitely one of the high points of the winter season for me, as was competing in the World Dressage Masters for the first time,” explained Marcus.  “I was also really excited about representing Canada with Don Kontes.  I gave both horses their time to shine and I think it worked out really well for us.”

Marcus’s students also proved successful during the winter season, earning tremendous results of their own.

“All of my students did very well during the winter circuit,” said Marcus.  “Ally Dunlop made her debut at the Young Riders level and finished her season with a win at the International Horse Sports Champion Cup in March.  Maya Markowsk represented Canada for the first time as part of Team Canada 2 at the Wellington Nations’ Cup with Lumiere, finishing sixth.  Lumiere is a great horse for Canada and I am really excited for their future together.”

Marcus credits his success in part to the amazing support he receives.

“Deborah Kinzinger Miculinic, who owns my horses, Robert Dover, who has been training me all winter, and Nicholas Fyffe, who is always a big help to me, helped make all of my success so far this season possible,” said Marcus.  “I want to give them all a huge ‘thank you’ for supporting me this winter.”

With the winter competition circuit now over, Marcus will head home to Canada to give the horses a bit of a break before focusing on preparing for the 2014 World Equestrian Games in Normandy, France.

Marcus operates David Marcus Dressage in Campbellville, ON, just west of Toronto.  For more information, please visit www.davidmarcusdressage.com.

Contact:  Jennifer Ward
Starting Gate Communications
Cell: (613) 292-5439