Tag Archives: USEA

Elite Adequan Gold Cup Signature Series to Kick Off in September 2017

Phillip Dutton (photo courtesy of the USEA)

Leesburg, Va. – The United States Eventing Association (USEA) and the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF), with input from the Professional Riders’ Organization (PRO), have joined forces to launch the Adequan Gold Cup Signature Series (GCSS). The GCSS will include many elite CIC3* events in the U.S. that will each offer at least $25,000 in prize money, culminating with a GCSS final with an unprecedented total purse. Competitors will accrue points at each leg of the series, with a leaderboard tracking rankings throughout the year. Leaderboard rankings will then secure riders a spot in the Final, which will held in conjunction with the American Eventing Championships.

Designed to showcase the best eventing athletes in the U.S., build awareness of the sport, and create an unmatched competition experience, the GCSS will work to ensure the long-term growth and sustainability of eventing. In addition, the USEA and USEF are jointly developing key corporate relationship strategies for acquiring and retaining GCSS sponsorship.

“I am very excited about the launch of the Adequan Gold Cup Signature Series. As we look to be successful on the world stage as a nation, it is vital that we elevate the profile of the sport at home,” said 2016 Olympic Individual Bronze medalist and GCSS Steering Committee member, Phillip Dutton. “The GCSS will give horses and riders a great opportunity to test themselves at elite competitions, as well as build an even stronger support and fan base.”

The inaugural GCSS will likely feature six to 10 premier CIC3* competitions beginning in September 2017 and will culminate at the Final slated for the fall of 2018.

The GCSS Steering Committee will select participating events through a bidding process that will begin on October 6, 2016. Participating venues will be announced at the USEA Annual Meeting in December 2016 after a final proposal is submitted to the FEI for approval.

Competitions interested in becoming a fixture of this series or those with general media inquiries are encouraged to contact Kate Lokey at KLokey@Useventing.com.

From the USEF and USEA

USEF and USEA Outline Ongoing Eventing Safety Initiatives

Lexington, Ky. – As the 2015 Eventing year progresses, the United States Eventing Association (USEA) and the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) would like to wish all our members a safe and enjoyable season. Both the USEA and the USEF are committed to the safety of horses and riders and have ongoing policies to further both. We are constantly researching new technologies in safety equipment, jump construction, and course quality. In recent years, the USEF and USEA have passed a rule requiring horse/rider combinations to achieve a standard of competence in competition. Additionally, the USEF mandates use of protective helmets and safety vests, all aimed at reducing the risk of injury and enhancing the enjoyment of Eventing. We urge everyone in the sport to review the following summary of initiatives and rules designed to improve safety in Eventing competitions. Further details can be found here on the USEA website.

Kieffer Claims Both Adequan USEA Gold Cup Divisions at Red Hills

Lauren Kieffer and Czechmate won the CIC3* division at Red Hills Horse Trials in Tallahassee, Florida. StockImageServices.com photo.

Lauren Kieffer stole the show this weekend, riding her way to two Adequan USEA Gold Cup Division wins. She was the overnight leader in both the Advanced and CIC3* divisions after cross-country, and managed to pilot both horses flawlessly around William “Fuzzy” Mayo’s technical show jump course today.

The crowds showed up to support the Red Hills International Horse Trials in the sunshine today, providing a lot of atmosphere in the newly renovated show jump arena at the Elinor Knapp-Phipps Park. The Advanced Division went before the CIC3* Division, and Kieffer rode Team Rebecca’s mare Veronica to an effortless double-clear round.

“Veronica was great, and she’s the type of horse that feeds off the atmosphere: the more of it, the better she gets,” said Kieffer. “She’s such a professional and experienced horse at this point, and she was such a pleasure to ride all weekend.”

Czechmate on the other hand did not take a liking to the atmosphere, but Kieffer handled the situation with poise and rode the Ramsay’s Czech Warmblood gelding through a very systematic round in the CIC3* Division.

“Being new to this level and this type of atmosphere, Czechy was a little spooky at the beginning, but I was happy with the way he got better as he went,” she said. “He really handled himself well this weekend and I’m proud of him.”

Liz Halliday-Sharp certainly kept the pressure on Kieffer in the CIC3*, leaving no room for error after her seamless double-clear round aboard Deborah Halliday’s Irish Sport Horse gelding HHS Cooley.

“He jumped out of his skin today, and I couldn’t have asked for more,” stated Halliday-Sharp, who has had the gelding since the beginning of his eventing career. “He had a bit of time off, and then I had a difficult time with him at the last two events, but he was just fabulous here all weekend. I really felt like I got my horse back this weekend, and that’s a wonderful feeling.”

Jennie Brannigan secured third place in the CIC3* with a beautiful double clear round aboard Nina Gardner’s Irish Thoroughbred gelding Cambalda.

Elinor MacPhail earned the Jockey Club’s Thoroughbred Incentive Program (T.I.P.) award with her 13-year-old OTTB mare, True Dynamite, coming in as the highest placed Thoroughbred in the CIC3* Division.

“This is [True Dynamite’s] first CIC3* and I’m really happy with the way she jumped all weekend,” stated MacPhail. “Cross-country is her best phase, as she’s a quick horse, and my goal is to get her to the Jersey Fresh three star this spring.”

Once again, Red Hills proved to be a weekend of top class entertainment for the local community, and fierce competition for the competitors.

The Adequan USEA Gold Cup and PRO Tour Series now moves to the Carolina International CIC3* on March 19-22 in Southern Pines, North Carolina and then heads west to the Galway Downs CIC3* in Temecula, California.

To see the full list of this weekend’s results at Red Hills International, go here.

About the Adequan USEA Gold Cup and PRO Tour Series

Qualifying for the 2015 Adequan USEA Gold Cup began last fall with the Plantation Field CIC3* (PA) and the Woodside CIC3* (CA) and features 11 qualifying competitions throughout the United States at the Advanced Horse Trials and CIC3* levels. The final will take place at the Nutrena USEA American Eventing Championships September 2015 in Tyler, Texas. Riders who complete a qualifier earn the chance to vie for $40,000 in prize money in the Adequan Advanced Division and the title of Adequan USEA Gold Cup Champion.

The 2015 Adequan USEA Gold Cup Series is made possible through the support of its many loyal sponsors: Adequan, Standlee Forage, Nunn Finer, Nutrena, Broadstone Equine Insurance Agency, Point Two, Dubarry, and FITS.

The PRO Tour Series consists of 13 premier destination events in the United States and Canada, featuring the best riders and most entertainment. Riders and Horses are awarded points on the PRO Tour Rider Leader Board and PRO Tour Horse Leader Board.

Authored By: USEA

Announcing the Eventing 18/Advancing Athletes for 2013

Lexington, KY -The USEA and USEF are pleased to announce the riders selected for the Eventing 18/Advancing Athletes program. A total of 10 riders have been chosen from around the country to participate in the new initiative designed to build a foundation of future athletes destined for high performance teams.

The riders are:

Brynn Littlehale – Saratoga, CA
David Pawlak – Boyce, VA
Patience (Viola) O’Neal – Spokane, WA
Adrian Jones – Schamong, NJ
Rowdie Adams – Greenville, TX
Madison Temkin – Sonoma, CA
Mia Farley – San Clemente, CA
Jamie Doolittle – Reddick, FL
Caroline Martin – Miami Beach, FL
Savannah Fulton – Finksburg, MD

Riders were selected based on their talent, competitiveness, commitment, potential, willingness to learn, quality of application and recommendation.

U.S. Team Coach David O’Connor will oversee the program and teach the first training session, which will be held in late November 2013.

For more details on the program, see “Announcing the USEA and USEF Eventing 18/Advancing Athletes Program.”

Phillip Dutton Defends His Title in Adequan USEA Gold Cup & PRO Tour CIC3* at Red Hills

Phillip Dutton and Mighty Nice jump to victory in the Adequan USEA Gold Cup & PRO Tour CIC3* at Red Hills.

Phillip Dutton kept his crown as the king of Red Hills with another win in the Adequan USEA Gold Cup & PRO Tour Series CIC3* after an exciting cross-country finish. Last year Phillip drove home from Red Hills in a brand new Mercedes thanks to his win aboard Jim and Arden Wildasin’s Mystery Whisper. This year he gets to trade the car in for another new one after winning today’s competition with Bruce Duchossois’ Mighty Nice, a 9-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding (ARD Ohio x Sarazen). Phillip and ‘Happy’ are no strangers to the Tallahassee, Florida event having won the CIC2* in 2011 as well.

“I know Mighty Nice very well, but to tell you the truth a horse like Mystery Whisper is much more suited to a course like this then Mighty Nice,” said Phillip. “I didn’t actually set out thinking I was going to win although I did have it in the back of my mind when Marilyn had some time on [RF Smoke on the Water] I knew that I could win.”

Phillip finished the Hugh Lochore-designed course in six minutes and 34 seconds, eight seconds over the time allowed. Luckily the 3.2 penalties added to his dressage mark of 43 weren’t too many to grab the top spot as overnight leader, Marilyn Little garnered six penalties with RF Smoke on the Water to drop down to a score of 50.7.

“He can get pretty strong,” said Phillip, “so I thought I would set out quick-ish and then if everything was going all right I would keep going like that. It wasn’t a perfect round, but I don’t think it was a crazy round for him either.”

“He is a pretty cool horse. He is so confident in himself, bordering on being arrogant on the cross-country.  He has a great sense of what he can do, and he is a huge horse, but very, very clever. He can pat the ground very easily and sort of grows an extra leg if I misjudge things a bit.”

Mighty Nice heads to The Fork H.T. in North Carolina next, and Phillip assures that he will have a nice quiet round there before heading to Kentucky. For his win in the Adequan USEA Gold Cup Division, Phillip takes home $500 in prize money, a 7-dose Adequan Gift Certificate, $350 in Nunn Finer Products, a $200 Point Two Certificate, a SmartPak Wellfleet Bridle, and a pair of FITS Breeches.

Marilyn Little headed into today’s finale of cross-country sitting in the top two spots, but time proved tough to make and cost her the win with Phoebe and Ray Manders’ RF Smoke on the Water, while a run-in with a tree aboard RF Demeter dropped them out of contention.

“Red Hills is notoriously hard to make the time on,” said Marilyn. “And I was a little bit behind coming up to the first water. I went to make it up a bit on the backside and he didn’t feel quite like himself, so I gave him a pat and said take a minute on the way to the steeplechase, so I couldn’t take advantage of that.”

“I was really pleased with the way that he went; I wish the result had been better, but it is what it is and I am really pleased with the horse.”

According to Marilyn, RF Demeter felt great on the first part of the course, but landed from fence six and locked onto a tree in her path. Despite Marilyn’s best efforts Demeter was determined to head towards the tree, and she tripped over the landscaping and sent Marilyn flying into the tree. Luckily both walked away unharmed from their foray into “Tree-Day Eventing.”

Rounding out the top three was the final pair of the CIC3*, Buck Davidson with Carl and Cassandra Segal’s Ballynoe Castle RM. When they left the start box, Buck and ‘Reggie’ still had a chance to win the division if they went clear inside the time. It wasn’t meant to be though and the pair earned 4.8 time penalties to settle for the yellow ribbon.

“I made so many mistakes throughout this event this weekend, I can’t even believe it,” said Buck. “I was on the best horse, and I didn’t do what I was supposed to do.”

“I think it was an exciting day for the crowd, with Reggie having a chance to win and being the last horse to go. I know the Segals loved it. I tried, but he obviously isn’t a Thoroughbred horse and isn’t the fastest horse, but he is honest as they come. I always feel that he is the best horse every single weekend, so I always feel like I let him down, but I got beat by two really good riders and two really good horses and you can’t win them all. I am very proud of Reggie and the other two that I rode.”

The only rider to make it home inside the time on the CIC3* course was Canadian, Selena O’Hanlon, who did so on two of her three mounts, A First Romance and Foxwood High.

The 33 horses and riders who completed the CIC3* are now qualified for the Adequan USEA Gold Cup Final at the Nutrena USEA American Eventing Championships in Tyler, Texas.

The CIC2* also concluded today with the cross-country phase and time proved a bit easier to make as the top three pairs all crossed the finish line without any additional penalties. Jennie Brannigan, who also finished fourth in the CIC3*, rode Nina Gardner’s Indie to the win after overnight leader, Clayton Fredericks took a ducking in the Appalachia Water complex.

“I didn’t even look at my watch until I was crossing the finish line,” said Jennie. “And then I was like oh my god I made time at Red Hills. I had no idea.”

Jennie gave a lot of praise to her coach and boss Phillip Dutton and was thrilled with the successful finishes for both her horses and his. Both of the Gardners’ horses are aiming for spring three-days with Indie headed to Bromont CCI2* and Cambalda to the Rolex Kentucky CCI4*.

Marilyn continued her successful streak in the CIC2* by finishing second and third on Raylan Farms’ duo of 8-year-old mares, RF Azarah and RF Black Pearl. RF Azarah finished on her dressage score of 56.4 while RF Black Pearl added only a rail down yesterday – an impressive feat, considering Marilyn only rode the horse for the first time last week and had never jumped a cross-country fence with her before.

Julie Richards won the CIC* with Linda Crabtree’s Hanoverian stallion, San City, while Kyle Carter and Elizabeth New rounded out the top three with their mounts, FR’s Trust Fund and Uppercrust D.

The Advanced, Intermediate, and Preliminary divisions conclude with show jumping tomorrow to finish out another great year at Red Hills Horse Trials.

Authored By: Leslie Mintz

© 2012-2013 United States Eventing Association, Inc.

Lad’s Night Out Lands Victory in 2012 Adequan USEA Gold Cup Series

Bea Di Grazia and Lad's Night Out jump a clean show jumping round to take home the win the the Adequan USEA Gold Cup Division. Frankie Thieriot Photo.

Bea di Grazia and her own Lad’s Night Out led the Adequan USEA Gold Cup Series Advanced division at Twin Rivers from start to finish. After a terrific performance throughout the weekend, the duo secured their victory by adding no jumping faults to their dressage score and only two time penalties.

With James Alliston and his longtime partner Parker putting in a clear round prior to Lad’s Night Out entering the ring, the pressure was on, but Bea di Grazia’s level of experience showed through as she seemed to casually walk into the ring with her striking grey gelding and take in the scenery, completing the course with ease. Di Grazia joked following her round that luck must have been on her side as one scary rail danced in the cups but stayed up when all was said and done.

Bea’s husband and cross country course designer Derek di Grazia looked on and applauded his wife on her tremendous weekend and Gold Cup win aboard the horse he purchased for her as a gift not long ago. When asked what will be next for this talented pair, Bea simply said, “What could be better than this? We had so much fun this weekend and Hector did everything I asked of him. I am excited to see where the future takes the two of us.”

Continue reading Lad’s Night Out Lands Victory in 2012 Adequan USEA Gold Cup Series

USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship Honors Go to Holder and Courageous Comet

Becky Holder and Courageous Comet (Hannah Bennett/USEA Photo)

Fairburn, GA – The Merial Advanced division at the Nutrena USEA American Eventing Championships presented by Bit of Britain wrapped up today with the show jumping phase at Chattahoochee Hills. Mark Donovan’s tough course had riders incurring numerous jump and time penalties with just five double clear rounds in the division. Becky Holder (Palmetto, GA) and Courageous Comet had one rail down but held onto their lead to win the Merial Advanced division held in conjunction with the USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship with a score of 27.7. Holder had a stellar weekend with her and husband Tom Holder’s 16-year-old Thoroughbred gelding, taking top honors at this year’s Championship as they did in 2010 Land Rover USEA American Eventing Championships.

It was a fitting way to end Courageous Comet’s illustrious career as Holder confirmed this was his last upper-level competition. The crowd went wild as Holder and “Comet” crossed the finish line winning the Championship and bringing a very special partnership to a close.

“He (Comet) deserves this. I believe now and have believed for a long time he is the best in his sport,” Holder said. “I appreciate the grooms, vets, trainers, selectors, USEF High Performance Committee, and everyone who has been part of shaping his career. Thanks to all the fans and to those at the Kentucky Horse Park; many of our most memorable moments were on that course and in that stadium.”

Continue reading USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship Honors Go to Holder and Courageous Comet

Holder and Courageous Comet Maintain Lead in the USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship after Cross Country

Fairburn, GA – The cross country portion of the Nutrena USEA American Eventing Championships presented by Bit of Britain (AEC) took place today for the Merial Advanced division at the lovely facility of Chattahoochee Hills. Making the time on cross country proved to be a challenge on this hot and humid day as almost the entire field incurred time penalties except for two riders. Becky Holder (Palmetto, GA) was one of those riders, piloting Courageous Comet to a double clear round and keeping a firm hold on their first place position in the USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship. She confidently rode “Comet,” her & husband Tom Holder’s 16-year-old Thoroughbred gelding, around Hugh Lochore’s championship course, increasing her lead on the rest of the field to 8.7 points.

Laine Ashker (Richmond, VA) rode Anthony Patch, her 13-year-old Thoroughbred gelding, to the only other double clear round of the day moving up from eighth to second place. In the pair’s last start, they finished second in the Advanced division at Millbrook.

Continue reading Holder and Courageous Comet Maintain Lead in the USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship after Cross Country

Holder and Courageous Comet Lead the USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship

Becky Holder and Courageous Comet (Leslie Threlkeld/USEA Photo)

Fairburn, GA – Competition at the Nutrena USEA American Eventing Championships presented by Bit of Britain (AEC) got underway today. With the Advanced division at the AEC also playing host to the USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship, stakes were running high. Becky Holder (Palmetto, GA) and her longtime partner Courageous Comet lead the field after scoring an impressive 23.7 on their dressage test, 5.6 points ahead of the rest of the field. “Comet,” a 16-year-old Thoroughbred gelding owned by Becky & her husband Tom Holder, is nearing the end of his upper level career so a top performance here would be a wonderful way to cap off his outstanding record. Holder is also in fifth place in the USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship on Can’t Fire Me, a 13-year-old Thoroughbred gelding owned by Phil & Melissa Town & Tom Holder, with a score of 30.7.

Sitting in second place are Jonathan Holling (Ocala, FL) and Downtown Harrison, an 8-year-old Trakehner/Thoroughbred gelding owned by Constance Holling. The pair earned a 29.3 for their nice, flowing dressage test. Holling won the Bromont CCI3* earlier this summer with Downtown Harrison and hopes to find that top form again here. The pair will head to the Boekelo CCI3* this fall with the help of a Land Rover Competition and Training Grant.

Continue reading Holder and Courageous Comet Lead the USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship

USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship Is About to Begin at the Nutrena USEA American Eventing Championships

Fairburn, GA – The top eventers from across the nation are ready to take part in the Nutrena USEA American Eventing Championships presented by Bit of Britain (AEC). The Championships are taking place at Chattahoochee Hills located in Fairburn, GA from September 6-9, 2012. The Advanced division at the AEC also plays host to the USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship. With 19 U.S. entries in the Advanced division competing September 6-8, the Championship will surely be an exciting one with several of the sport’s top names as well as up-and-coming stars.

Becky Holder (Palmetto, GA) will be riding both her talented grey horses, Can’t Fire Me and Courageous Comet, in the division and vying for top honors. Can’t Fire Me, a 13-year-old Thoroughbred gelding owned by Phil & Melissa Town & Tom Holder, recently won the Richland Park CIC3* leading from start to finish with a final score of 44.30. Finishing right on his tail was stablemate and seasoned competitor Courageous Comet, a 16-year-old Thoroughbred gelding owned by Becky & Tom Holder. Holder and “Comet” were the 2010 AEC Advanced Champions and they hope to find success at the championship again.

Continue reading USEF National Advanced Horse Trials Championship Is About to Begin at the Nutrena USEA American Eventing Championships