Misdee Wrigley-Miller (Picsofyou.com)
Ocala, FL – The 2013 USEF National Pairs Championship concluded Sunday afternoon at the Live Oak International with the influential cones phase. Under blustery conditions and the threat of severe storms, the field of four went to task in the John Deere Arena.
Misdee Wrigley-Miller (Lakewood Ranch, FL) travelled to Live Oak with her sights set on securing her first USEF National Pairs Championship. The 2011 FEI World Pair Driving Championship veteran did just that driving a near faultless round to add a National Title to her growing list of accomplishments.
“I’m over the moon,” said an ecstatic Wrigley-Miller. “I’ve broken my demon.”
A single ball down for three points and an additional 2.61 time faults meant Wrigley-Miller finished on a three day total of 139.85.
The cones phase hosted an additional challenge for drivers as show jumps were set within the cones course, to be used later in the afternoon for the $33,000 CSI 2* Hollow Creek Farm Winning Round. However, due to the weather many of the jumps had to be moved or changed, therefore the cones course looked very different when drivers entered the arena than it had when they walked in the morning.
“I was really, really happy. The course was extremely difficult,” said Wrigley-Miller. “The course I walked this morning wasn’t there.”
Collecting Reserve Champion honors was Lisa Singer (Chadds Ford, PA); the eight-time National Champion incurred nine points for three balls down and 9.05 time faults. Singer finished on an overall score of 151.12.
Canada’s Rae Fischer was the winner of the Live Oak International’s FEI Pair Horse division which was sponsored by Scott and Kathi Dancer on a score of 131.55.
In addition to the USEF National Championship, Live Oak International also hosts Four-in-Hand, Pairs, Singles, and Pony driving competition at both the FEI and Intermediate levels. For a second year, it will host world class jumping competition in conjunction with the driving. The USEFNetwork.com presented by Smartpak will host wall-to-wall coverage of the marathon on Saturday and Sunday’s cones, in addition to Saturday’s $50,000 Live Oak International CSI 2* Grand Prix and the $33,000 CSI 2* Hollow Creek Farm Winning Round on Sunday. The live stream, video-on-demand, photos and news can be found here.
Visit the Live Oak International website here.
Follow the 2013 U.S. Driving Team here.
By Helen Murray