2016 Rio Olympic Power Rankings: Round 3

We’re full swing into the season now, and our Round 3 rankings finally produced some movement. Red Hills and Twin Rivers both held CIC3* events since Round 2, which shuffled the ranks a bit. On top of that, the rolling scores came into effect, with the 2015 Red Hills CIC3* dropping off the board.

Next round we’ll see even more movement, with Carolina International and Poplar Place both hosting CIC3* divisions in the meantime. The West Coast won’t see any movement until after Galway Downs CIC3* at the beginning of April. The unveiling of Rolex entries confirms where many horses are aimed for this spring.

When creating these rankings, we used the following criteria:

  • The horse and rider must have already qualified as a pair at one of the 2015 qualifying events.
  • The average penalty score for each phase is added up to determine each horse’s average completion score.
  • Rankings are calculated using FEI scores in the previous calendar year only, from the three-star and four-star levels.
  • The rankings will be rolling, meaning that scores will be dropped from the averages as they pass the one-year date.
  • Only results as a pair are counted.

Currently 70 U.S. combinations have achieved at least one Olympic qualifier, although five of those pairs are no longer competing together. Pairs not yet qualified will have additional opportunities in 2016 to qualify at Rolex, Badminton, Jersey Fresh, Saumur, Tattersalls, Bromont and Bramham. We’ll list a few pairs at the end of the rankings who have yet to qualify but could certainly be up for consideration if they qualify this spring.

Note: To be considered for an Olympic team, a horse must have been submitted as an applicant to the FEI by Feb. 19, 2016. This list does not reflect whether horses have been submitted for Olympic consideration.

Rewind to: Round 1, Round 2

Clark Montgomery and Loughan Glen. Photo courtesy of ????

Clark Montgomery and Loughan Glen. Photo by Samantha Clark.

1. Clark Montgomery and Loughan Glen

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Luhmühlen CCI4*, 2015 Blenheim CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 37.57
  • Number of FEI 3*/4*runs in past calendar year: 4
  • Last round’s ranking: #1

Loughan Glen was scheduled to make his 2016 debut this past weekend at Tweseldown, but unfortunately the event was canceled due to torrential rains. Clark currently has this horse entered at the Belton CIC3* in the middle of April, which they won last year. It’s possible they will re-route to another prep event after getting rained out this past weekend.

2. Tamie Smith and Mai Baum

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Fair Hill CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 47.28
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 5
  • Last round’s ranking: #2

Tamie Smith confirmed to EN that she and Mai Baum’s owners have decided it is in his best interest to forgo competing in a CCI this spring, instead aiming him to do the CICO3* at Great Meadow in July. Mai Baum sustained a minor injury after Fair Hill last fall and is just starting back to work. This decision has been made as to not rush his fitness level and work load as he comes back into full competition shape.

Phillip Dutton and Fernhill Fugitive. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Phillip Dutton and Fernhill Fugitive. Photo by Jenni Autry.

3. Phillip Dutton and Fernhill Fugitive

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Rolex CCI4*, 2015 Galway Downs CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 50.48
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 6
  • Last round’s ranking: #5

Fernhill Fugitive is proving he is every bit as reliable as his stablemates, winning the Red Hills CIC3* with one of his best dressage scores yet, a double clear show jumping round, and the fastest cross country round of the day. Fernhill Fugitive will bypass Carolina and run next at The Fork CIC3*.

4. Phillip Dutton and Fernhill Cubalawn

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Rolex CCI4*, 2015 Fair Hill CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 51.59
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 5
  • Last round’s ranking: #4

Phillip is running Fernhill Cubalawn for the first time in 2016 in the CIC2* at Carolina International. After that, he will go head-to-head with his rapidly improving stablemate Fernhill Fugitive in the CIC3* at The Fork.

Boyd Martin and Master Frisky. Photo courtesy of Kasey Mueller.

Boyd Martin and Master Frisky. Photo courtesy of Kasey Mueller.

5. Boyd Martin and Master Frisky

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Rolex CCI4*
  • Average completion score: 52.50
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 3
  • Last round’s ranking: #6

Master Frisky hasn’t competed since Round 2 of the Power Rankings but is next entered in the CIC3* at Carolina, followed by an entry in the CIC3* at The Fork.

6. Phillip Dutton and Mighty Nice

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Fair Hill CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 52.90
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 4
  • Last round’s ranking: #7

Like Fernhill Cubalawn, Mighty Nice will be running for the first time this year at Carolina in the CIC2*, followed by a go at The Fork CIC3*.

7. Will Coleman and OBOS O’Reilly

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Rolex CCI4*, 2015 Blenheim CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 53.87
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 3
  • Last round’s ranking: #8

Will Coleman is following a similar strategy as Phillip Dutton, bringing OBOS O’Reilly out for the first time at the Carolina International in the Open Intermediate. He will also move on to contest the CIC3* at The Fork.

8. Buck Davidson and Ballynoe Castle RM

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Jersey Fresh CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 54.29
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 7
  • Last round’s ranking: #9

Reggie hasn’t had any runs since Round 2 of the Power Rankings, but he too will be in the CIC3* at Carolina and The Fork.

9. Lauren Kieffer and Meadowbrook’s Scarlett

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Jersey Fresh CCI3*, 2015 Galway Downs CCI3*
  • Average Completion Score: 54.55
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* Runs in past calendar year: 4
  • Last round’s ranking: #3

Meadowbrook’s Scarlett has fallen in the rankings this round to due to the highest dressage score of her short three-star career, along with a slower cross country pace at Red Hills. A double clear show jumping round shows this mare is still on form and should return to her usual ways in the CIC3* at The Fork in April. This mare will be bypassing Rolex to gain additional three-star mileage this spring.

Lauren Kieffer and Veronica. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Lauren Kieffer and Veronica. Photo by Jenni Autry.

10. Lauren Kieffer and Veronica

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Bramham CCI3*, 2015 Blenheim CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 54.77
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 4
  • Last round’s ranking: #10

Veronica took the win in the Advanced at Red Hills for a second consecutive year in commanding fashion, adding only time to her dressage score to win by nearly eight points. Next up is a run in the CIC3* at The Fork and then another go at Rolex.

11. Boyd Martin and Blackfoot Mystery

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Fair Hill CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 55.85
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 2
  • Last round’s ranking: #11

Blackfoot Mystery sat out at Red Hills, but we will next see him in the CIC3* at Carolina and then The Fork.

12. Emily Beshear and Shame on the Moon

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Bromont CCI3*, 2015 Blenheim CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 57.86
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 5
  • Last round’s ranking: #12

Shame on the Moon will next be competing in the CIC3* at Carolina, followed with an entry in the Advanced-A division at The Fork.

Jennie Brannigan and Catalina. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Jennie Brannigan and Catalina. Photo by Jenni Autry.

13. Jennie Brannigan and Catalina

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Fair Hill CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 57.93
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 3
  • Last round’s ranking: #17

Catalina earned quite a boost this weekend earning second place with a dressage score nearly 10 points lower than her scores from last fall and adding only a few time penalties across the country. She is currently entered in the CIC3* divisions at both Carolina and The Fork.

14. Buck Davidson and Copper Beach

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Tattersalls CCI3*, 2015 Boekelo CCIO3*
  • Average completion score:58.37
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 6
  • Last round’s ranking: #18

Copper Beach earned a boost this week by doing nothing at all. Copper Beach last had a blip on cross country at Red Hills last year, and with the rolling score, it no longer factors into these Power Rankings, boosting his score. We will next see him at the Carolina CIC3* and The Fork CIC3*.

15. Matt Brown and Super Socks BCF

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Bromont CCI3*, 2015 Boekelo CCIO3*
  • Average completion score: 58.60
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 6
  • Last round’s ranking: #14

Matt once again did dressage with this horse but withdrew before stadium and cross country with concerns about the footing. Hopefully, the footing at the Carolina CIC3* and  The Fork CIC3* will be more to his liking.

16. Boyd Martin and Pancho Villa

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Jersey Fresh CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 59.13
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 3
  • Last round’s ranking: #15

Pancho Villa has yet to compete following the 2015 Pan American Games and is not currently appearing on any entry lists.

17. Marilyn Little and RF Demeter

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Bromont CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 59.27
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 7
  • Last round’s ranking: #13

Other than a run in the Wellington Eventing Showcase, Marilyn Little has yet to post entries for this spring. Marilyn confirmed to EN that Demi will have a light spring campaign, likely competing next at Rocking Horse’s Spring H.T. in the first weekend of April.

18. Jon Holling and Downtown Harrison

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Boekelo CCIO3*
  • Average completion score: 60.15
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 2
  • Last round’s ranking: #16

Jon has this horse currently entered in the CIC3* at both Carolina and The Fork.

Boyd Martin and Welcome Shadow. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Boyd Martin and Welcome Shadow. Photo by Jenni Autry.

19. Boyd Martin and Welcome Shadow

  • Qualifiers: Fair Hill CCI3*
  • Average completion score: 62.60
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 3
  • Last round’s ranking: Unranked

Welcome Shadow is improving every time out, and a fifth place finish in the Red Hills CIC3* just goes to show how quickly this mare is catching up to her other talented stablemates. She’s next entered in the Advanced at Carolina.

20. Lauren Kieffer and Landmark’s Monte Carlo

  • Qualifiers: 2015 Boekelo CCIO3*
  • Average completion score: 63.52
  • Number of FEI 3*/4* runs in past calendar year: 5
  • Last round’s ranking: #19

This horse finished ninth this past weekend in the Red Hills CIC3*, where a pair of rails in the show jumping hurt his overall score. We’ll next see him in Advanced runs at Carolina and The Fork before he takes a crack at his first four-star in April at Rolex.

Hannah Sue Burnett and Harbour Pilot. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Hannah Sue Burnett and Harbour Pilot. Photo by Jenni Autry.

TWIN RIVERS & RED HILLS RECAP

At Twin Rivers, Bunnie Sexton and Rise Against placed second to Lauren Billys. In Florida, Phillip Dutton and Fernhill Fugitive snatched up the win, with Jennie Brannigan and Catalina finishing second. Welcome Shadow, Fly Me Courageous, Doesn’t Play Fair, Landmark’s Monte Carlo and Mr. Candyman are all qualified pairs that finished inside the top 10. Hannah Sue Burnett and Harbour Pilot still need to qualify for Rio but made a strong statement at Red Hills, leading the dressage and ultimately finishing in third in their first start at this level since 2014.

Rio Watch List
Combinations currently ranked outside the top 20
(their next competition is listed in parentheses)

  • Liz Halliday-Sharp and HHS Cooley (Carolina CIC3*)
  • Allie Knowles and Sound Prospect (Carolina CIC3*)
  • Doug Payne and Vandiver (Carolina CIC3*)
  • Colleen Rutledge and Covert Rights (Carolina CIC3*)
  • Lynn Symansky and Donner (Carolina CIC3*)
  • Buck Davidson and Petite Flower (Carolina CIC3*)

Contenders Not Yet Qualified
 (their next competition is listed in parentheses)

  • Hannah Sue Burnett and Harbour Pilot (The Fork Advanced-A)
  • Phillip Dutton and Indian Mill (The Fork CIC3*)
  • Will Faudree and Hans Dampf (The Fork CIC3*)
  • Sinead Halpin and Manoir de Carneville (Carolina CIC3*)
  • Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4 (Carolina CIC3*)
  • Julie Richards and Sandhills Brillaire (Poplar Place CIC3*)
  • Kim Severson and Fernhill Fearless (Carolina CIC3*)
  • Allison Springer and Arthur (Carolina CIC3*)

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