Jenni Autry
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Jenni Autry

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About Jenni Autry

Originally from San Diego, Jenni discovered eventing thanks to the Bedford Hunt Pony Club in Virginia. After working in both newspapers and magazines, she joined the EN team in 2012. She travels extensively covering the U.S. Eventing Team and has reported at the Olympic Games, World Equestrian Games, Pan American Games, and every CCI4* in the Northern Hemisphere. As to her favorite event, it’s a toss-up between Aachen and Boekelo. She lives with her husband and three cats in Pennsylvania.

Latest Articles Written

Are You an Eventing Statistics Guru? Test Your Knowledge with Stacks

Do you love tracking statistical trends in eventing? Are you a numbers wizard? Then you will love the new app called Stacks!

EquiRatings and SAP teamed up to create the app, which allows eventing fans to test their expertise by predicting scores and results from competitions.

The app just launched ahead of Leg 3 of Event Rider Masters in Arville, Belgium. Here are some examples of questions used during today’s dressage at Arville:

  • Mark Todd on commentary suggested Balmoral Sensation (Clarke JOHNSTONE) could deliver a test in the twenties? Will he be right?
  • The leader Chris Burton is on 23.6, does Upsilon, the ERM dressage holder, take over the lead?
  • Fernhill By Night (Liz HALLIDAY-SHARP) scored below 28 in each of their five tests before Wiesbaden (33.2). Will they get back below 28 today?
  • Cloud Dancer (Jonelle PRICE) gave Jonelle her best ever CIC3* test (22.1, Blenheim 2015). Will they score 26 or below today?

You can find the app by searching “EquiRatings Stacks” in the app store on your phone or tablet. The app is available for both iOS and Android. Be sure to check tomorrow for questions about show jumping and cross country from Arville.

How high can you build your stack?

Go Eventing.

An Event Rider’s Crash Course in Playing Polo

Whitney Ross and Pistol on the left, with Jenni Autry and Bodie on the right. Photo by Kira Topeka.

North America’s only FEI Nations Cup Eventing will take place July 6-8 at the Brook Ledge Great Meadow International, presented by Adequan, and the event is rolling out some exciting changes this year in The Plains, Virginia.

Admission is free on Friday, July 6 for spectactors, and the evening bareback puissance has been replaced by a polo exhibition in the main arena. Top event riders will play in an arena polo match against members of the Great Meadow Polo Club in what is sure to be a thrilling evening of sport.

With that in mind, Great Meadow asked me to take a polo lesson to help spread the word about the Friday night polo exhibition. A quick evaluation of my sporting skillsets reveals me as woefully ill-suited to playing polo. Prowess at playing baseball, pool, lacrosse or really any activity involving hand-eye coordination would have benefited me greatly.

Thankfully, the instructors at the Great Meadow Polo School are well versed in teaching polo players of all experience levels and abilities. The school was established by John Gobin and Whitney Ross alongside the Great Meadow Polo Club to build future generations of players in the Northern Virginia area.

Students have the unique opportunity to play in their home arena at Saturday night’s Twilight Polo, which hosts matches each Saturday from May through September at Great Meadow. Polo school lessons also take place in the arena, which is where I found myself for a crash course in this fast-paced sport.

Learning to hit the ball. Photo by Kira Topeka.

Polo vs. Eventing

Whitney Ross, assistant manager for the polo school, took me under her wing for my lesson. Rebekah Pizana of the Greenhill Winery & Vineyards Polo Team kindly offered to let us use her polo ponies, Pistol and Bodie. Both are pint-sized Argentinian-bred geldings who generously tolerated my lack of hand-eye coordination during the lesson.

The first concept I had to wrap my brain around is that contact is completely different in eventing and polo. Contact is sacred for event riders — we devote an inordinate amount of time to developing feel and correctly using contact across all three phases.

In polo, you only use contact when you absolutely need it, essentially to turn, slow down or stop. At all other times your reins should be looped and your hand should be shoved well up your pony’s neck. Accidentally touching his mouth can mean slowing down your pony inadvertently, which is not at all what you want when chasing the ball.

Once I had the correct contact (or lack thereof), we moved on to hitting the ball. Like with contact, success with hitting the ball required me to totally override my instincts as to how event riders are supposed to sit in the saddle and maintain our upper body position.

The proper technique for hitting the ball. Photo by Chris Weber.

To hit the ball, polo riders have to get low — bend forward at the hips, rotate through the body, and swing. If event riders are ever leaning that far forward and low with our upper bodies, it means something has gone terribly wrong and you need to sit up immediately lest you find yourself on the floor.

Needless to say, every warning signal in my brain was going off as I practiced getting low enough with my upper body to hit the ball. After practicing at the walk and trot, Whitney seemed confident enough that I wouldn’t fall face first between the goal posts, and I had a crack at cantering around and trying to score.

The key word here is trying — I definitely missed the ball more than I managed to hit it, but when I did get a good shot I couldn’t stop smiling. Polo is definitely a blast to play. Many thanks to Great Meadow, Kira Topeka, John Gobin, Whitney Ross, Rebekah Pizana, Bodie and Pistol for a fun afternoon.

You can take a polo lesson, too! The Great Meadow Polo School provides top notch instruction from international professional polo players and has taught countless riders to play in the Northern Virginia area and beyond. Click here to learn more and sign up for a lesson.

Would I play polo again? Absolutely! Photo by Kira Topeka.

Twilight Polo

If you’d rather enjoy the thrill of polo with both feet firmly on the ground, Twilight Polo is a fantastic way to spend a Saturday night. Now in its 25th year, Twilight Polo has brought thousands of members of the Northern Virginia community together to enjoy fast-paced arena polo with friends and family.

Every Saturday from May through September, Twilight Polo features three matches with halftime games for both children and adults. Following the final match, the evenings conclude with music and dancing in the pavilion. You can bring a picnic to enjoy on the grass hill overlooking the arena, or book reserved seating.

A rotating list of local food trucks are always on site for Twilight Polo. Glasses and bottles of wine from Greenhill Winery and Vineyards, sponsor of the 25th Silver Anniversary year, are available for purchase at the wine bar. Old Bust Head Brewery also sells pints of craft beer. Click here to view the Twilight Polo schedule.

Great Meadow International

Be sure to attend Great Meadow International on Friday, July 6 for the arena polo exhibition featuring top event riders. Admission is free all day. The Meadow Market Trade Show will be open with special opening night deals, so it’s also a great opportunity to go shopping.

Riders will be signing autographs in the Meadow Market Beer Garden at 5:30 p.m., where Old Bust Head Brewery will be serving up craft beers. The polo exhibition will take place at 6 p.m. Any riders interested in playing in the exhibition match should email Kira Topeka ASAP to reserve a spot.

If you missed the announcement on the star-studded entry list that will be competing in the Nations Cup, click here to get caught up on the latest news from Great Meadow.

Click here to view the full event schedule. Be sure to follow the Brook Ledge Great Meadow International, presented by Adequan, on FacebookTwitter and Instagram. Visit the event website to lean more.

Great Meadow Links: WebsiteEntriesScheduleTicketsVendors

Preview the Star-Studded Entry List for Great Meadow CICO3*

Jessica Phoenix and Pavarotti at Great Meadow 2017. Photo by Jenni Autry.

We are just two weeks away from North America’s only FEI Nations Cup Eventing leg, the Brook Ledge Great Meadow International CICO3*, presented by Adequan. The competition will take place July 6-8 in The Plains, Virginia, and we have a preview of the star-studded entry list:

  • Shanon Baker (USA) and Ballingowan Zeal
  • Emily Beshear (USA) and Olney Uncle Sam
  • Tracey Bienemann (USA) and Geoni
  • Kristen Bond (USA) and Enough Already
  • Shelby Brost (CAN) and Crimson
  • Will Coleman (USA) and Off the Record
  • Will Coleman (USA) and Tight Lines
  • Will Coleman (USA) and Soupcon du Brunet
  • Charlotte Collier (USA) and Clifford M
  • Buck Davidson (USA) and Park Trader
  • Buck Davidson (USA) and Carlevo
  • Cornelia Dorr (USA) and Louis M
  • Phillip Dutton (USA) and Sportsfield Candy
  • Sydney Conley Elliott (USA) and Cisko A
  • Sydney Conley Elliott (USA) and QC Diamantaire
  • Will Faudree (USA) and Caeleste
  • Will Faudree (USA) and Michel 233
  • Lisa Marie Fergusson (CAN) and Honor Me
  • Clayton Fredericks (AUS) and Luksor
  • Savannah Fulton (USA) and Captain Jack
  • Lillian Heard (USA) and LCC Barnaby
  • Ben Hobday (GBR) and Shadow Man
  • Lindsay Kelley (USA) and Cooley Cruise Control
  • Lauren Kieffer (USA) and Landmark’s Monte Carlo
  • Lauren Kieffer (USA) and Paramount Importance
  • Ema Klugman (AUS) and Bendigo
  • Allie Knowles (USA) and Sound Prospect
  • Allie Knowles (USA) and Business Class
  • Allie Knowles (USA) and Morswood
  • Chelsea Kolman (USA) and Dauntless Courage
  • Leslie Law (GBR) and Voltaire de Tre
  • Caroline Martin (USA) and Spring Easy
  • Caroline Martin (USA) and Islandwood Captain Jack
  • Caroline Martin (USA) and Jump Jet
  • Megan O’Donoghue (USA) and Palm Crescent
  • Selena O’Hanlon (CAN) and Foxwood High
  • Jessica Phoenix (CAN) and Bogue Sound
  • Jessica Phoenix (CAN) and Pavarotti
  • Will Rawlin (GBR) and VIP Vinnie
  • Waylon Roberts (CAN) and Lancaster
  • Waylon Roberts (CAN) and Kelecyn Cognac
  • Kim Severson (USA) and Cooley Cross Border
  • Tamie Smith (USA) and Fleeceworks Royal
  • Georgie Spence (GBR) and Halltown Harley
  • Allison Springer (USA) and Lord Willing
  • Erin Sylvester (USA) and Paddy the Caddy
  • Lynn Symansky (USA) and Under Suspection
  • Chris Talley (USA) and Unmarked Bills
  • Chris Talley (USA) and Sandro’s Star

Great Britain named their Nations Cup team earlier this month, and we are waiting on pins and needles for the USA and Canada to name their teams.

Located in the heart of Virginia horse country and only 50 miles from Washington, D.C., attending Great Meadow International is the perfect opportunity to explore the rich horse history of Middleburg and beyond. More than 15,000 spectators are expected to be in attendance this year.

The Meadow Market is receiving a complete overhaul for the 2018 event, with a new layout featuring a stage for demonstrations and mini educational lectures. There will be live music throughout the weekend in the beer and wine garden overlooking the main arena. You can also win prizes and special discounts through the Meadow Market Scavenger Hunt.

Great Meadow has added tailgating overlooking the arena for both days of competition at the Nations Cup. Both the ringside tailgate spaces and reserved ringside boxes will give a prime viewing spot for the arena polo exhibition featuring celebrity players on Friday evening — stay tuned for more details!

The 2018 Great Meadow International Tailgate Contest sponsored by Red Truck Bakery will take place on Sunday, July 8 during cross country. The theme is “Around the World” to celebrate the Nations Cup. Scores will be based on interpretation of the theme, creativity and aesthetic appeal. Reserve a Great Meadow International Tailgate here, and don’t miss EN’s top tailgate tips here.

Dressage kicks off on Saturday morning in the main arena with world class footing from Attwood Equestrian Services, followed by show jumping in the evening. The competition concludes on Sunday with cross country and the prize giving.

General admission tickets are $25 for a one-day car pass or $40 for a weekend car pass, and parking is free. Click on the following links to purchase tickets: General AdmissionRingside BoxesTailgatingVIP Tent.

Click here to view the full event schedule. Be sure to follow the Brook Ledge Great Meadow International, presented by Adequan, on FacebookTwitter and Instagram. Visit the event website to lean more. Will you be attending Great Meadow this year? Let us know in the comments below!

Great Meadow Links: Website, EntriesScheduleTicketsVendors

Jonty Evans Remains in ‘Stable But Serious Condition’

Jonty Evans and Cooley Rorkes Drift at Badminton 2017. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Horse Sport Ireland confirmed in an update today that Jonty Evans remains in “stable but serious condition” following his fall from Cooley Rorkes Drift at Tattersalls International Horse Trials on  Sunday, June 3.

Jonty has been moved from the Neuro Intensive Care Unit at Beaumont Hospital to a high dependency ward in Connolly Hospital, located in Blanchardstown, West Dublin, Ireland.

“Unfortunately, there is no change to report in his condition from the most recent update. Jonty remains unconscious with a very serious head injury. The family deeply appreciate all the care for Jonty from the Beaumont Hospital staff and the support and messages from all his family and friends.”

Horse Sport Ireland will issue further updates if there are changes in Jonty’s condition. EN continues to send our best wishes for a speedy and full recovery.

[Update on Jonty Evans 20th June 2018]

Luhmühlen Victory Gives Jonelle Price Back-to-Back CCI4* Wins

Jonelle Price all smiles after jumping a clear round to win with Faerie Dianimo! Photo by Jenni Autry.

Following Shamwari 4’s heartbreaking withdrawal from Luhmühlen this morning, Jonelle Price suddenly found herself with the opportunity to take back-to-back CCI4* wins. She entered the arena for show jumping in the same situation she faced with Classic Moet at Badminton: Without a rail in hand, she had to jump clear to win.

And that’s exactly what Jonelle did, piloting Faerie Dianimo to a beautiful clear over Frank Otto’s challenging track to win her second CCI4* in as many months — and nine months after giving birth to her son, Otis.

“If you’d asked me in January — when I was just trying to get back up to full fitness and do a full day’s work — if I’d be sat here at the end of June with two four-star wins under my belt, I would have said you were completely mad,” Jonelle said. “It’s beyond anything I could have ever dreamed of. I’m feeling incredibly lucky right now with these two special mares.”

Faerie Dianimo, a 13-year-old British-bred mare (Dimaggio X Faerie Dazzler VII, by Catherston Dazzler) Jonelle owns with Trisha Rickards and Jacky Green, jumped one of the six clear show jumping rounds to finish on 28.3.

“Faerie Dianimo is pint-sized. She is tiny. She thinks in her head she’s about 18 hands high. It’s that attitude that has seen her get to the very top level of the sport. She fights me a bit on the cross country, and in the dressage she can get a bit hot, but it’s these qualities that make her such a competitor. It was almost like she knew how important it was today. All credit to her.”

Laura Collett and Mr. Bass. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Britain’s Laura Collett and Mr. Bass were the only pair out of the 31 horses and riders that completed the CCI4* to finish on their dressage score, taking second place on 29.9 in the horse’s debut at the level.

“He’s an unbelievable horse. He tried his heart out in there. The real top horses seem to know when it really matters,” Laura said. “He dug really deep, and I had to keep reminding myself that there wasn’t really another horse I’d want to be sat on going into the show jumping. I just have to remember to let him do his job because he knows it better than I do.”

Laura has produced Mr. Bass, a 10-year-old Holsteiner (Carrico X K-Jeunesse, by Exorbitant xx) she owns with Nick How and Keith Scott, from an unbroken 4-year-old, which she said makes such a strong result at his first CCI4* all the more rewarding.

“We know each other inside and out, which I think makes it even more of a special partnership and bond. It makes it easier to come to a big competition like this knowing that he’s like my best friend and we have a really special connection. That for me is important,” Laura said.

“To get a horse to four-star is a huge amount of effort. We all work day in and day out, and there are a lot more lows than there are highs, so we really have to appreciate days like this.”

Ros Canter and Zenshera. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Team GB took four of the spots in the top five, with Ros Canter and Zenshera jumping a stylish clear to finish in third place on 29.9. (Laura Collett and Mr. Bass finished on the same score but made the optimum time on cross country to break the tie in their favor.)

“I brought Zenshera here last year for his first four-star. We came into this week a little more confident that we could do this level together. He’s been an absolute star all week. He wasn’t the most talented young horse, but he just tries his heart out all the time. He has a huge love for the job, so he makes me life really very easy.”

Ros said she was particularly pleased that Zenshera, a 14-year-old KWPN (Guidam X Telvera, by Matterhorn) she owns, delivered a clear show jumping round today, as he had a rail down at both Luhmühlen and Pau last year.

“He kept his head in the dressage and he went as fast as he could on cross country. (Show jumping) is his weakest phase, and he pulled it out of the bag for the first time. I’m really very proud of him.”

Kitty King and Ceylor L A N. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Kitty King and Ceylor L A N, an 11-year-old KWPN (Veron X Winanda LAN, by Ahorn) owned by Diane Bown, Jacqueline Owen and Samantha Wilson, also delivered an impressive clear round for Britain to finish fourth on 32.2.

Britain’s Willa Newton and Chance Remark, a 16-year-old Irish Sport Horse (Actinium X Cuildooish Lady, by Farney Clover) owned by Feenea Machin and Peter Thomas, had one rail down to finish fifth on 33.9.

Ireland delivered one of its strongest performances at a CCI4* in the last decade, with Sam Watson securing the best four-star result of his career aboard Horseware Ardagh Highlight. The 14-year-old Irish Sport Horse (Puissance X Gentle Servant, by Kings Servant) Sam owns with Belinda Keir had two rails down to finish sixth on 41.6.

Sam Watson and Horseware Ardagh Highlight. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Ireland’s Cathal Daniels and Rioghan Rua, an 11-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare (Jack of Diamonds X Highland Destiny, by Flagmount King) owned by Frank and Margaret Kinsella, also had two rails down to finish seventh on 41.6. (Sam Watson was closer to the optimum time on cross country to break the tie in his favor.)

Deniro Z  jumped beautifully for Liz Halliday-Sharp and unfortunately knocked two poles in the triple combination to finish eighth on 42.2 — still an incredibly strong result in the horse’s CCI4* debut for America.

“He was jumping out of his skin and was unbelievable in the warm-up. He felt like he hadn’t even run the day before,” Liz said. “At the treble he dropped behind my leg a little bit, and I wasn’t quick enough to give him enough leg to move him up. It’s really unlike him to have two down, and he jumped the rest of the track like a total pro. I’m very proud of him in his first four-star.

Deniro Z, 10-year-old KWPN (Zapatero VDL X Zonne-Trend, by French Buffet xx) owned by the Deniro Syndicate and Ocala Horse Properties, had a big support crew today, as Boyd and super groom Mike Pendleton stepped in to lend a helping hand following Shamwari 4’s withdrawal.

“We are gutted for Boyd,” Liz said. “He had such a great round yesterday. The sport can be very tough, and we appreciated his support today.”

Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z. Photo by Jenni Autry.

 

Italy’s Vittoria Panizzon and Chequers Play the Game, a 14-year-old KWPN (Stravinsky X Mirakel, by Lancer II) owned by Amy and Patricia Lambert, had one rail down to finish ninth on 42.2 in the horse’s CCI4* debut.

Sweden’s Anna Freskgård and Fly Away vd N.Ranch, a 10-year-old Belgian Warmblood Quidam’s Rubin X Retina Van de N. Ranch, by Voltaire) she owns with William Fryer, pulled two rails and added 3 time penalties to round out the top 10 on 50.3.

Click here to view final results in the CCI4*. You can watch CCI4* show jumping on demand here.

We are relieved to report that Chloe Raty is back home in Belgium resting comfortably and recovering following her rotational fall yesterday with Axel Z, who was euthanized due to sustaining critical spinal injuries. Chloe suffered no major injuries in the fall.

Belgian chef d’equipe Alec van den Abeele spoke in the press conference today on Chloe’s behalf, thanking Luhmühlen officials for the support and help she received after yesterday’s devastating accident.

CIC3* show jumping is underway now. Stay tuned for much more from Luhmühlen. Go Eventing.

#Luhmühlen: WebsiteStart Times & Scoring, TimetableEN’s CoverageEN’s InstagramEN’s Twitter

Watch the Replay of Luhmühlen CCI4* Show Jumping

Update: You can now watch the replay of CCI4* show jumping in the video above!

After many of you experienced technical difficulties watching the Luhmühlen cross country live stream on Horse & Country TV, you will be relieved to know that CCI4* show jumping will be shown on Luhmühlen YouTube Channel. You can watch right here on EN!

CCI4* show jumping starts at 10:30 a.m. /4:30 a.m. EST, followed by CIC3* show jumping at 1:30 p.m./7:30 a.m. EST. Only the top 10 of CIC3* show jumping will be shown live at this link.

Martin Otto always designs a beefy show jumping course at this venue, and we can anticipate yet another leaderboard shake-up in the final phase. One rail separates the entire top five, so there is absolutely no margin for error. Stay tuned as we crown a CCI4* winner in Germany!

#Luhmühlen: WebsiteStart Times & ScoringSJ Live StreamTimetableEN’s CoverageEN’s InstagramEN’s Twitter

Dramatic Morning at Luhmühlen: 29 Horses Move to CCI4* Show Jumping

Jonelle Price and Faerie Dianimo. Photo by Jenni Autry.

It’s been all change on a dramatic morning at Luhmühlen, as Boyd Martin withdrew overnight leader Shamwari 4 prior to the final horse inspection for the CCI4*. Shamwari 4’s withdrawal moved Jonelle Price and Faerie Dianimo into the lead, and we had some tense moments when the mare was sent to the holding box.

In addition to Faerie Dianimo, the ground jury of Andrew Bennie (NZL), Sandy Phillips (GBR) and Christoph Hess (GER) also sent Alice Dunsdon’s mount Cool Investment to the holding box. Both Faerie Dianimo and Cool Investment were ultimately accepted to send all 29 combinations that presented to the ground jury on to show jumping.

Liz Halliday-Sharp’s mount Deniro Z, the sole horse representing America in the CCI4* following Shamwari 4’s withdrawal, looked fresh and feisty this morning. He sits in eighth place going into show jumping after an impressive cross country round yesterday in his debut at the level.

There was a funny moment at the jog when a dog wandered on to the jog strip just before Jonelle presented Faerie Dianimo. Whoever runs the sound system here at Luhmühlen clearly has a wry sense of humor, as the song “Who Let the Dogs Out” promptly started playing over the speakers, and the dog was pronounced “Accepted!”

The CIC3* horses presented to the ground jury of Anne-Mette Binder (DEN) and Christoph Hess (GER) following the CCI4*. All 45 horses were accepted, including Woods Baughman and Maverick McNamara for America.

It’s another warm day here in Germany, and the sun is shining for Luhmühlen’s finale. CCI4* show jumping starts at 10:30 a.m. /4:30 a.m. EST, followed by CIC3* show jumping at 1:30 p.m./7:30 a.m. EST. Both CCI4* and CIC3* show jumping will stream live on Luhmühlen’s YouTube Channel.

Martin Otto always designs a beefy show jumping course at this venue, and we can anticipate yet another leaderboard shake-up in the final phase. One rail separates the entire top five, so there is absolutely no margin for error. Stay tuned as we crown a CCI4* winner in Germany!

#Luhmühlen: WebsiteStart Times & Scoring, Live StreamTimetableEN’s CoverageEN’s InstagramEN’s Twitter

Boyd Martin Withdraws Overnight Leader Shamwari 4 from Luhmühlen

Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4 on cross country yesterday at Luhmühlen. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Boyd Martin announced this morning that he is withdrawing overnight leader Shamwari 4 prior to the final horse inspection at Luhmühlen CCI4* due to an injury sustained on cross country yesterday.

He released the following statement to EN:

“Unfortunately I have decided to withdraw Shamwari from today’s showjumping. When I finished the cross country yesterday he looked sore in his hind leg. A number of the top vets here at the competition all agreed that he has strained his hind tendon, and it would not be right to try to present him for the trot up. It is a very rare injury.

“Shamwari has been in good health and had a wonderful preparation towards this year’s Luhmühlen CCI4*. He has been closely monitored by Dr. Kevin Keane, Dr. Susan Johns and Dr. Dean Richardson through his whole preparation and through this event. He had no pre-existing issue coming into this event and we were looking forward to a great result.

“Being a 16-year-old horse, this will most likely be the end of Shamwari competing at the top of the sport. It has been an absolute privilege to ride him. He is one of the best horses I have ever ridden, and it was sad that he never won a four-star. I truly thought that this weekend was his. I would like to thank his owners in the Shamwari Syndicate, Silva and Nox, coach Erik Duvander, his groom Mike Pendleton and my vet Kev Keane. I look forward to get Shammie back to the promised land for him to heal up.”

Jonelle Price and Faerie Dianimo are the new leaders following Shamwari’s withdrawal. The final horse inspection starts at 8:15 a.m./2:15 a.m. EST, with CCI4* show jumping set to start at 10:30 a.m./4:30 a.m. EST.

#Luhmühlen: WebsiteStart Times & ScoringTimetableEN’s CoverageEN’s InstagramEN’s Twitter

Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4 Storm to Luhmühlen CCI4* Lead

Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4. Photo by Jenni Autry.

With Mike Etherington-Smith upping the ante for his second year as course designer at Luhmühlen, we expected cross country day to shake-up the CCI4* leaderboard. After an influential day that saw only 20 of 46 starters (43.4% of the field) jump clear rounds, America tops the leaderboard thanks to Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4 storming around to move from eighth up to lead on their dressage score of 27.4.

Five pairs (10.9% of the field) jumped clear rounds inside the optimum time of 11 minutes, 17 seconds, and Boyd was the first to make beat the clock with Shamwari 4, finishing 5 seconds inside with the 16-year-old Hanoverian (Star Regent xx X Donnice, by Der Clou) owned by the Shamwari 4 Syndicate.

Boyd and Shamwari have a history of strong results at this venue, having finished third in 2014 the last time they competed at Luhmühlen. After a cracking round today, the stage is set for them to improve on that result tomorrow.

“He wasn’t done much lately, and he fought the whole way around. I was a little bit rusty in the first couple of minutes, and then we got going in a nice rhythm, and he had plenty in the tank at the end,” Boyd said. “I think he’s the best horse in the world. He hasn’t been at this level in a couple of years, and we’ve been plotting for this event for about six months. We’ve really taken our time preparing him, and he came out and gave me a fantastic round.”

Shamwari last competed at a four-star at Kentucky in 2016, and Boyd said he has strategically saved the horse in the hopes of making a return trip to the World Equestrian Games, where they finished seventh individually to deliver the top American result in 2014.

“He’s an older horse, and I’ve been thinking about the WEG in the back of my mind, so I tried not to run my race too early,” Boyd said. “I picked Luhmühlen because it usually has really good ground and not too many hills — probably the friendliest four-star to hopefully get him ready for the WEG.”

While Luhmühlen has been considered a softer CCI4* in recent years — 77% of starters jumped clear rounds in 2017 — the course certainly didn’t ride soft today.

“To be honest when I walked the course I thought it was a little bit soft when compared to other years when I’ve been here with Capt. Mark Phillips (as the course designer), but it rode very, very difficult, which is credit to the new course designer Mike Etherington-Smith,” Boyd said.

“You really had to work on your time the whole way around. There were lots of corners and narrows. The problems were split throughout the course. I’m very thankful I have a real trier of a horse in Shamwari.”

Jonelle Price and Faerie Dianimo. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Jonelle Price and Faerie Dianimo finished three seconds over the optimum time to add 1.2 penalties, which moved them from sixth after dressage up to second place on a score of 28.3.

“I’m not complaining by any stretch of the imagination. To be up amongst the leaders — you don’t take it for granted. … Fairie Dianimo absolutely loves the cross country, and for all the reasons she gives me a bit of grief on a daily basis, she really comes to the fore on a day like this,” Jonelle said.

“She really demonstrates the athleticism and determination, and she kept galloping to the finish. I was a little bit angry with myself for adding a couple of seconds, but I’m very happy and hopefully have a happy healthy horse in the morning and we can jump a good round.”

Faerie Dianimo, a 13-year-old British-bred mare (Dimaggio X Faerie Dazzler VII, by Catherston Dazzler) Jonelle owns with Trisha Rickards and Jacky Green, are another pair with strong previous form at Luhmühlen, having finished second in 2015 on their dressage score.

Laura Collett and Mr. Bass. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Laura Collett piloted four-star first-timer Mr. Bass to an impressive clear round and one of the fastest of the day, finishing 8 seconds inside to move from 18th after dressage up to third on a score of 29.9.

Mr. Bass, a 10-year-old Holsteiner (Carrico X K-Jeunesse, by Exorbitant xx) Laura owns with Nick How and Keith Scott, is well known for his cross country jumping prowess, and he easily skipped around the beefy track today.

“He made it feel like a Pony Club event, which I know I’m very lucky because a four-star shouldn’t feel as easy as he made it. He’s a very special horse to me and I’ve had him since he was a 4 year old,” Laura said.

“I thought walking (the course) it was pretty tough … You got to fence 11, and I just thought, ‘You know you’re at a four-star.’ There is a big difference between three-star and four-star in the intensity, and that’s how it rode. You had to be on your game at every opportunity. I was just lucky that Mr Bass is totally on his A-game. I just have to sit back and enjoy the ride.”

Great Britain took four of the top six spots on the leaderboard after cross country. Willa Newton and Chance Remark, a 16-year-old Irish Sport Horse (Actinium X Cuildooish Lady, by Farney Clover) owned by Feenea Machin and Peter Thomas, added 1.2 time penalties to move from 14th up to fourth on 29.9.

Ros Canter and Zenshera, her own 14-year-old KWPN (Guidam X Telvera, by Matterhorn), were originally given 50 penalties for missing a flag, but the penalties were quickly overturned on review. They added 2.8 time penalties to move up one spot on the leaderboard to fifth place on 29.9.

(Mr. Bass, Chance Remark and Zenshera are all on the same score. Mr. Bass wins the tiebreaker because he made the optimum time, and Chance Remark is ahead of Zenshera due to being closer to the optimum time.)

Kitty King and Ceylor LAN delivered an impressive performance in his first CCI since Rio. The 11-year-old KWPN (Veron X Winanda LAN, by Ahorn) owned by Diane Bown, Jacqueline Owen and Samantha Wilson, added 5.6 time penalties to move up two spots on the leaderboard to sixth on 33.0.

Sam Watson and Horseware Ardagh Highlight, a 14-year-old Irish Sport Horse (Puissance X Gentle Servant, by Kings Servant) he owns with Belinda Keir, skipped around 6 seconds inside the time to climb from 29th after dressage to seventh on 33.6 as the best Irish pair.

Sam Watson and Horseware Ardagh Highlight. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Cathal Daniels and Rioghan Rua, an 11-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare (Jack of Diamonds X Highland Destiny, by Flagmount King) owned by Frank and Margaret Kinsella, were another pair to initially receive 50 penalties for missing a flag. The ground jury ultimately elected to remove the penalties more than 4 hours after cross country had ended, which moves them up to eighth place on 33.6. (Sam Watson is on the same score and breaks the best-of-the-Irish tie by being closer to the optimum time.)

Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z delivered a cracking clear round for the USA in the horse’s CCI4* debut, coming home with 4.4 time penalties to climb from 17th up to ninth place on 34.2. Three cheers for both of our American pairs sitting inside the top 10 after cross country!

“His first CCI2* was just last year, so it’s incredible to have him jump around the way he did. It was a hard track, and it rode tougher than it looked,” Liz said. “There was never a place where you could make time up. You were always doing something out there, and he was just a warrior. He looked for the flags and fought the whole way and made a lot of complexes look easy.”

Liz took all of the direct routes with Deniro Z, a 10-year-old KWPN (Zapatero VDL X Zonne-Trend, by French Buffet xx) owned by the Deniro Syndicate and Ocala Horse Properties, and she said the course rode nearly exactly to her plan.

“I would have loved to have made the time, and we were on it all the way up until the main arena, but for a first four-star from a 10 year old who is green, he was perfect. He’s come away a happy horse. I think he learned a lot and will come away a stronger horse from the experience. I love him to pieces.”

Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Italy’s Vittoria Panizzon and Chequers Play the Game, a 14-year-old KWPN (Stravinsky X Mirakel, by Lancer II) owned by Amy and Patricia Lambert, added 10.8 time penalties to move up one spot to 10th on 38.9.

Sweden’s Anna Freskgård and Fly Away vd N.Ranch, a 10-year-old Belgian Warmblood Quidam’s Rubin X Retina Van de N. Ranch, by Voltaire) she owns with William Fryer, were the fourth pair to jump clear and inside the time, which moved them all the way from 42nd place after dressage to 11th on 39.3.

At the time of publication, final cross country results for the CCI4* have still not been finalized due to multiple instances of 50 penalties being awarded for missed flags. As a result, we are not including a detailed breakdown of the fence analysis. Click here to view the fence-by-fence report on live scoring.

We saw two horse falls today, one of which tragically resulted in an equine fatality. Axel Z, ridden by Chloe Raty of Belgium, was euthanized due to spinal injuries sustained in a rotational fall at fence 18b. While the rail was pinned with a MIM clip, the frangible technology did not deploy. Click here to read the full report. Chloe sustained no major injuries in the fall, and our thoughts are with her and her team during this terribly sad time.

No major injuries have been reported for Jesse Campbell and Cleveland, the other pair who fell on course when the horse stumbled between fences in the second water complex. Click here to view final scores after cross country.

Please note: The results of the top 10 could change pending the outcome of the ground jury’s review of footage for the 50 flag penalties. We will update this report with changes if any are made.

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Axel Z Euthanized Following Rotational Fall at Luhmühlen CCI4*

Chloe Raty and Axel Z at fence 17B in the Meßmer Teich water complex. Their fall occurred at 18B, the upright rail coming out of the water. Photo by Jenni Autry.

We are devastated to confirm that Axel Z, ridden by Chloe Raty of Belgium, has been euthanized due to spinal injuries sustained in a rotational fall on the CCI4* cross country course at Turniergesellschaft Luhmühlen.

The fall occurred when Axel Z, an 11-year-old Zangersheide (Asca Z X Odessa, by Gastal), left a leg at fence 18b, an upright rail set on a bounce stride in the Meßmer Teich water complex. While the rail was pinned with a MIM clip, the frangible technology did not deploy.

Axel Z rotated over the fence and fell, pinning Chloe underneath him. She was wearing an air vest, which officials confirmed did deploy. Both horse and rider were transported off the course via ambulance. Luhmühlen confirmed in a press conference following cross country that Chloe was examined at a local hospital and sustained no major injuries.

X-rays at a local veterinary clinic revealed a fracture in the first lumbar vertebrae of Axel Z’s spine. FEI veterinarian Dr. Jürgen Martens confirmed Axel Z was euthanized due to the catastrophic nature of the injuries.

When asked in the press conference why the MIM clip did not deploy, course designer Mike Etherington-Smith said, “The way the clips are designed is to help reduce the possibility of a rotational fall. There is no guarantee that they won’t happen. It’s all about minimizing the risk.”

Chloe and Axel Z were competing in their first CCI4* at Luhmühlen. Our thoughts are with Chloe and all who knew and loved Axel Z.

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How to Watch Luhmühlen Cross Country Live

The massive angled log into the first water at fence 17A on the CCI4* course. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Good morning from cross country day at Turniergesellschaft Luhmühlen! The action kicks off at 9 a.m./3 a.m. EST, and we have all the details on how to watch live.

While you have likely been enjoying the free live stream for dressage on Luhmühlen’s YouTube Channel, cross country will not be shown there today. Horse & Country TV has the exclusive broadcast rights to air cross country.

You must be an H&C TV subscriber to access the live stream today. Subscriptions cost $8.99 per month. Click here to subscribe. H&C TV is available in the U.S. on Roku, mobile apps and at www.horseandcountry.tv.us.

The live stream will also be available for subscribers to watch on demand after the event on H&C TV’s website. An hour-long highlights show from Luhmühlen will be featured on the main H&C channel on Sunday, June 24, at 9:30 p.m. EST. This program will also be available on demand online after it has aired.

CCI4* cross country starts at 9 a.m./3 a.m. EST, followed by CIC3* cross country at 1:45 p.m./7:45 a.m. EST. Start times for our American contingent are as follows:

  • Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4: 10:32 a.m./4:32 a.m. EST
  • Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z: 9:52 a.m./3:52 a.m. EST
  • Woods Baughman and Maverick McNamara: 2:33 p.m./8:33 a.m. EST

Click here for CCI4* start times.

Click here for CIC3* start times.

EN wishes safe trips for all today. Go Eventing.

#Luhmühlen: WebsiteStart Times & ScoringXC Live StreamTimetableEN’s CoverageEN’s InstagramEN’s Twitter

Tim Lips and Bayro Set Dutch Dressage Record to Lead Luhmühlen CCI4*

Tim Lips and Bayro. Photo by Jenni Autry.

As we expected, the leaderboard saw a major shake-up on the second day of CCI4* dressage here at Turniergesellschaft Luhmühlen. EquiRatings confirmed that Tim Lips set a new Dutch dressage record today when he piloted his stalwart partner Bayro into the lead on 24.1.

The score likely would have crept even lower had Tim not lost his stirrup after the reinback. “I couldn’t do medium canter because I was searching for my stirrup!” (It’s comforting to know that Olympians can lose stirrups in dressage like the rest of us mere mortals!)

Nicole Werner, Tim’s dressage trainer, flew in from Holland today to help him and gave the following advice: “She said, ‘You have an extremely good horse. Don’t ride for a 7. Ride for a 9.’ I think most of that I did, so I was very pleased.”

Bayro, a 12-year-old KWPN (Casantos X Vanya, by Corland), has competed at Luhmühlen for the last three consecutive years, finishing 11th and seventh in the CCI4* in 2017 and 2015, respectively, and third in the CIC3* in 2016.

Tim and Bayro have never made the optimum time on cross country at this venue. With only 10 seconds separating the top 10 after dressage, every second over the time on Mike Etherington-Smith’s course will prove extremely costly on the leaderboard. (Click here for a full course preview.)

“Bayro is not the fastest horse, but I’m definitely not the fastest rider. … He always gives me a good feeling here, and I hope I can repeat it tomorrow,” Tim said. “Normally with this course designer when you walk the course you think, ‘Woah, this is big,’ but they always ride nice.”

Jesse Campbell and Cleveland. Photo by Jenni Autry.

New Zealand’s Jesse Campbell and Cleveland were trending to take the lead until the final flying change, which was late behind to see them settle for second place on 24.6.

“This week I had a slightly new approach with Cleveland,” Jesse said. “He’s like a wild animal sometimes, and sometimes I work him a bit too hard in the lead-up. This week I tried to trust him as much as I could with my training — that what I had done at home was good enough. I wanted him to be peaked physically when we got in the ring. I think we got it nearly spot on.”

Cleveland, an 11-year-old KWPN (Watermill Swatch X Rielone, by Lennard), is making his CCI4* debut here at Luhmühlen, and Jesse said he is looking forward to tackling the course tomorrow.

“You have to be strong and disciplined at the same time,” Jesse said. “I think if you’re not careful, you can get sucked into the way the course is set up. In the middle part he puts in a lot of loops with not so many jumping efforts. I think if you’re not careful you can lose time there.”

Shane Rose and CP Qualified. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Shane Rose and CP Qualified sit in third place on 25.5, which is all the more impressive when you consider he has only ridden the horse a handful of times since October — starting Wednesday when he flew in from Australia.

After they were eliminated on cross country at Les Etoiles de Pau CCI4*, Shane went home to Australia while “Darcy,” a 15-year-old Holsteiner (Quite Capitol X Mareike II, by Corofino 1), stayed in Europe so he could take another crack at securing qualification for the World Equestrian Games.

Sam Griffiths has kept the horse in work at his yard in Dorset, England. While a late-entry snafu kept the horse from running any preparation competitions this spring, Darcy has been galloping and cross country schooling with Sam in the lead-up to Luhmühlen.

“Considering the short preparation, I’m really happy with the test. I fluffed the change after the half-pass left, but other than that I’m really happy and am looking forward to tomorrow … I’ve flown over for this to get a qualifying score. I’m certainly going to go out a little cautiously and gauge how he’s traveling. He’s a horse that doesn’t waste time, but he’s not a very fast horse,” Shane said.

“The course suits him. Whilst a lot of other people would like the rain, he really likes being on top of the ground. For conditions in Europe, this is probably as good as I can get it. It’s not hilly, which suits him as well.”

Click here to view full scores in the CCI4* at the conclusion of dressage. Looking to our American contingent, Boyd Martin, who led after the first day of dressage with the Shamwari 4 Syndicate’s Shamwari 4, now sits in equal eighth on 27.4. Liz Halliday-Sharp and the Deniro Syndicate’s Deniro Z sit 17th on 29.8. Click here to read about their tests in yesterday’s dressage report.

CCI4* cross country starts at 9 a.m./3 a.m. EST tomorrow, followed by CIC3* cross country at 3:45 p.m./9:45 a.m. EST. Start times for our American contingent are as follows:

  • Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4: 10:32 a.m./4:32 a.m. EST
  • Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z: 9:52 a.m./3:52 a.m. EST
  • Woods Baughman and Maverick McNamara: 2:33 p.m./8:33 a.m. EST

The only way to watch cross country in the U.S. is through Horse & Country TV. Click here for a full fence-by-fence preview of the course. We wish safe trips for all horses and riders tomorrow. Go Eventing.

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Course Preview: Luhmühlen CCI4* Requires Serious Attack Plan

Now in his second year of designing the cross country course at Turniergesellschaft Luhmühlen, Mike Etherington-Smith has definitely upped the ante in terms of the track’s technicality and difficulty. This year’s course demands an attacking, forward ride right from the start, and we can almost certainly expect it to cause more trouble than last year, when 77% of starters jumped clear rounds.

While the course follows much of the same route, the optimum time has been wheeled much tighter. Last year, 17 pairs made the time (36% of starters). This year we can expect the optimum time of 11 minutes, 17 seconds to be more difficult to catch. As Jesse Campbell so aptly put it: “You have to be very determined for 11 minutes and 17 seconds.” Riders are meticulously planning their routes around the twisty, winding track to ensure no precious seconds are wasted.

That said, we definitely have fast ground here in Germany. Following 12 weeks without rain in the area, the grounds crew at the venue are literally working around the clock watering the course to provide the best possible going for the horses. A massive thank you has to go out to the entire Luhmühlen grounds crew for their mammoth effort.

Lots of twisting and turning!

The first three jumps, Auftakt der Sparkasse Harburg-Buxtehude, AGCO/Fendt Haus and Fledermaushotel, are galloping fences set at maximum width and designed to settle horses and riders into a rhythm. Fence 4 is the beefy Trakehner, followed by the Hasenstal table at fence 5, which brings riders to the first question on course.

Horses will make two passes through the revamped water complex at the Krüll Premium Cars Village. Riders will need to kick boldly up the mound to the first brush at fence 6A, before going on to jump the second brush into the water at 6B, then turn left to jump an arrowhead in the water. After looping around the field, riders come back to the water and bounce two hanging rails at fences 7 and 8A, then splash through the water and out to a left-pointed brush corner at 8B.

Then it’s on to the Charles Owen Royal Works, the hollow at fence 9, where riders will navigate two houses. The Hof Sudermühlens Jagdszene at fence 10 is a let-up table in the woods before the next question on course at fence 11, the Heiner’s Wellenbahn. Riders will jump a large house set on a slope at 11A, then navigate down the hill to two sharply angled brushes set on one stride at 11BC.

The Horseware Jump includes fence 12, an imposing ditch and wall, with a right-pointed brush corner at fence 13. Fence 14 at LVM Am Waldrand features a line of two angled logs that leave little room for error. The Hof Sudermühlens Jagdszene at fence 15 is a let-up table with a bit of a drop on the landing side.

The massive angled log at fence 17A in the Meßmer Teich water complex. Photo by Jenni Autry.

There is a definite feeling of increased intensity going forward to the latter half of the course, starting with the Meßmer Teich water complex. Riders will jump an open oxer at fence 16, then jump into the water over a massive angled log at fence 17A, before kicking on to a triple brush at 17B. There is not much time to get organized after that for the up bank and bounce over a set of rails at 18AB. The entire series of fences requires boldness, accuracy and control in quick succession.

The Biertisch, a big hammock at fence 19, and Auf nach Tryon, the bridge at fence 20, are two straightforward let-up fences. Riders will then head towards the main arena, first jumping the big Rennbahnhindernis brush at fence 21, then entering the arena and jumping a maximum width table at fence 22, Lotto Niedersachsen Tisch.

The collapsible corner at fence 23A in the main arena … note the green MIM technology! Photo by Jenni Autry.

The Longines Kombination at fence 23 follows soon after and is a domino effect type of question — get the first part wrong and the rest could snowball. It starts with a left-pointed corner at 23A, with a right bending line to a table at 23B, then a right bending line to another left-pointed corner at 23C. All of the tables and corners in the main arena feature MIM frangible technology and are collapsible.

Riders then leave the main arena and go on to the Manzke Kombination at fences 24 and 25, an open oxer set at maximum width and height followed by a left bending line to a right-pointed open corner. Fence 26, a table called Auf dem Trainingsplatz, brings horses and riders to the final real question on course.

The final water, the DHL Komplex, starts with a set-up table at fence 27, followed by two angled boats set on one stride in the water at 28AB, then three strides to a curved brush at fence 28C. Horses will need enough gas left in the tank to power through this final tricky combination.

The final major question on course: the DHL Komplex at fence 28. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Riders then head for home. A narrow brush at fence 29, Vogelnest, is designed to ride straightforward but still needs to be respected. The Ariat Kombination at fence 30AB is the final question on course, with a line of a table to an angled rolltop. Fence 31, appropriately titled Luhmühlen 2018, will bring riders to the finish.

The course is beautifully presented, and our hats are off to builders David Evans and Carl Fletcher for their spectacular handiwork. The footing feels significantly better today after constant watering. Be sure to scroll through the beautiful photos of each fence taken by Antonia van Baath and listen to Mike Etherington-Smith’s audio commentary. Many thanks to our friends at CrossCountry App!

Stay tuned for quotes from the riders as to their thoughts on the course. CCI4* and CIC3* cross country will stream live on Horse & Country TV, which is the only option for watching in the U.S. Stay tuned for full details on how to watch live. CCI4* cross country starts at 9 a.m./3 a.m. EST. Go Eventing.

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Watch the Luhmühlen Dressage Live Stream

Both days of dressage are streaming live from Turniergesellschaft Luhmühlen on Thursday and Friday, June 14 and 15, and you can watch live here on EN. The broadcast schedule is as follows:

Thursday, June 14:

  • CIC3* dressage from 8.30 a.m.- 12.45 p.m./2:30 a.m.-6:45 a.m. EST
  • CCI4* dressage from 1:40 p.m.-2:55 p.m./7:30 a.m.-8:55 p.m. EST

Friday, June 15:

  • CIC3* dressage from 9 a.m.-12:25 p.m./3 a.m.-6:25 a.m. EST
  • CCI4* dressage 1:15-4:50 p.m./7:15-10:50 a.m. EST

All three of our American combinations go Thursday at the following times:

  • Woods Baughman and Maverick McNamara: 10:30 a.m./4:30 a.m. EST
  • Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z: 3:32 p.m./9:32 a.m. EST
  • Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4: 4:40 p.m./10:40 a.m. EST

Dressage starting orders:

Keep it locked on EN for wall-to-wall coverage from Luhmühlen. Go Eventing.

#Luhmühlen: WebsiteStart Times & Live ScoringTimetableDressage Live StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s InstagramEN’s Twitter

 

Luhmühlen Day 1: Boyd Martin Ties for CCI4* Lead, Liz Halliday-Sharp in 8th

Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4 sit tied for equal first place with Great Britain’s Kitty King and Ceylor LAN at the conclusion of the first day of CCI4* dressage here at Turniergesellschaft Luhmühlen in Germany.

Shamwari 4 last competed at Luhmühlen in 2014, when Boyd piloted him to a strong third-place finish, so the pressure was on today to nail the first phase. Boyd and “Shammie,” a 16-year-old Hanoverian (Star Regent xx X Donnice, by Der Clou) owned by the Shamwari 4 Syndicate, checked that box in a big way to deliver a personal best score at CCI4* level.

“He’s one of the most talented horses I’ve ever had, and I’ve never had a perfect test on him,” Boyd said. “Today was the closest I’ve ever been. I usually lose him in the canter, but today I had good control and balance.”

Shamwari 4 last competed in a CCI4* at Kentucky in 2016, and he’s had a quiet couple of seasons in the lead-up to this event, with only a handful of steady CIC2* runs on his record since.

“I’ve got absolute complete belief in this horse. I’ve never felt like I had the result at a competition that matched his ability. He’s one of the best cross country horses I’ve ever ridden. Every jump I’ve pointed him at since we’ve been together, he’s jumped,” Boyd said.

“I felt like coming into this I didn’t need to test him at big courses to remind him that we can do it. I’m riding on a personal belief, and I believe he’s in the best shape of his career. He’s happier and healthier than he’s ever been. I’ve also got a good schooling course at home, and I’ve built some tricky questions there.”

Kitty King and Ceylor LAN. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Like Boyd and Shamwari 4, Kitty King and Ceylor LAN are also returning to the CCI4* level for the first time since 2016. “Sprout,” an 11-year-old KWPN (Veron X Winanda LAN, by Ahorn) owned by Diane Bown, Jacqueline Owen and Samantha Wilson, last competed in a CCI4* at the 2016 Rio Olympics. He sustained a neck injury in a fall prior to Badminton last year and only just returned to competing in March.

“He tried really, really hard and really concentrated on me and went as well as he can for how he is at the moment,” Kitty said. “It’s lovely to be in such a good position at the end of day one, but there are a a lot of good horses to come tomorrow.”

Italy’s Vittoria Panizzon and Chequers Play The Game, a 14-year-old KWPN (Stravinsky X Mirakel, by Lancer II) owned by Amy and Patricia Lambert, scored 28.1 to sit in third place in the horse’s CCI4* debut.

“Only one of the flying changes didn’t quite turn out as planned, but the rest was brilliant,” Vittoria said. “He has a fabulous walk, which earned us three nines from the judges — definitely something to be proud of!”

Vittoria Panizzon and Chequers Play the Game. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z, our other American combination in the CCI4*, scored 29.8 to sit in eighth place. “Niro,” a 10-year-old KWPN (Zapatero VDL X Zonne-Trend, by French Buffet xx) owned by the Deniro Syndicate and Ocala Horse Properties, is contesting his first CCI4*.

“He is still very green, but he was very professional in the ring and very grown up,” Liz said. “I thought he tried his guts out.”

The flying changes are still a work in progress with this horse, and he delivered two clean changes out of four, which Liz is definitely considering a step in the right direction.

“There are some areas of the test that need tidying up. The changes will take time. Some horses learn them very fast, and some take a long time. It’s a process,” Liz said.

“We came here knowing we weren’t at our perfected test, but I was thrilled with everything else. We’ve worked very hard on his halts, and he nailed all of that. He’s a super horse, and we have a special partnership.”

Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Click here to view final scores after the first day of CCI4* dressage. We have a number of heavy-hitting combinations set to come tomorrow, so prepare yourselves for a major leaderboard shake-up.

Here’s your cheat sheet for the key pairs to watch on the live stream tomorrow:

  • Laura Collett and Mr. Bass: 1:42 p.m./7:42 a.m. EST
  • Tim Lips and Bayro: 1:57 p.m./7:57 a.m. EST
  • Emma McNab and Fernhill Tabasco: 2:12 p.m./8:12 a.m. EST
  • Nicola Wilson and Bulana: 3:17 p.m./9:17 a.m. EST
  • Ros Canter and Zenshera: 3:25 p.m./9:25 a.m. EST
  • Shane Rose and CP Qualified: 3:40 p.m./9:40 a.m. EST
  • Pippa Funnell and Billy Beware: 4:02 p.m./10:02 a.m. EST
  • Jonelle Price and Faerie Dianimo: 4:10 p.m./10:10 a.m. EST
  • Tina Cook and Billy The Red: 4:40 p.m./10:40 a.m. EST

Woods Baughman and Maverick McNamara. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Dressage also continues tomorrow in the Meßmer Trophy CIC3*, which serves as the German National Championship. We have one American combination competing in the CIC3* in Woods Baughman and Maverick McNamara, who scored 35.4 to sit just outside the top 20. Click here to read EN’s full interview with Woods, who is based in Germany for the year training with Dirk Schrade.

We will also have a full preview of Mike Etherington-Smith’s cross country to bring you tomorrow, packed with plenty of quotes and analysis from the riders. Click here to take a sneak peek at all the fences, plus commentary from Mike, thanks to our good friends at CrossCountry App.

The second day of dressage starts tomorrow, with the CIC3* going from 9 a.m.-12:25 p.m./3 a.m.-6:25 a.m. EST, followed by the CCI4* from 1:15-4:50 p.m./7:15-10:50 a.m. EST. Click here to watch all the action live.

Keep it locked on EN for wall-to-wall coverage from Luhmühlen. Go Eventing.

#Luhmühlen: WebsiteStart Times & Live ScoringTimetableDressage Live StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s InstagramEN’s Twitter

Woods Baughman Makes His Luhmühlen Debut with Maverick McNamara

Woods Baughman and Maverick McNamara. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Woods Baughman and Maverick McNamara scored 35.4 to sit just outside the top 20 at the conclusion of the first day of dressage in the Meßmer Trophy CIC3* here at Turniergesellschaft Luhmühlen.

The sole American rider in the CIC3*, 22-year-old Woods is competing alongside his mentor Dirk Schrade, with whom he has been training with since January in Germany.

Woods bought Maverick McNamara, a 14-year-old British Warmblood (Medoc X Skippy) who Felix Vogg produced through the three-star level, from Dirk two years ago. When Woods decided to spend a year training overseas, Germany seemed like the clear choice.

“I was really looking for a way to get better and improve as fast as possible to be as competitive as I can be,” Woods said. “I figured Germany is on top right now, so that’s where I needed to be. “

Sharon White, whom Woods trained with for three years prior to moving to Germany, knows Dirk well — he produced her former three-star partner Under Suspection — so basing with him made the most sense.

“Being in Germany has been amazing,” Woods said. “Really understanding the way that they train and work every day is super.”

Woods completed two internationals in Germany in the lead-up to Luhmühlen, finishing 13th in the CIC2* at Sopot in April and 41st in the CIC3* at Marbach in May, both with clear cross country runs.

Ringside at Luhmühlen: from left, Liz Halliday-Sharp, Boyd Martin, Erik Duvander, Dirk Schrade and Julia Hübsch, who is grooming for Woods this week. Photo by Jenni Autry.

The opportunity to compete at Luhmühlen is a big one, and Woods said he is thrilled to be here. As for his dressage test today, Woods said “Mac” got a bit tense in the arena.

“I’d love to be able to drop my dressage scores quite a bit. It’s my weakest link,” Woods said. “It would be nice to feel a little more relaxed coming into that phase.”

Woods has a big cheering squad here at Luhmühlen in his parents, Jay and Kim, as well as his girlfriend, Cornelia Dorr, and her mom, Ellie.

“My parents are amazing,” Woods said. “They are with me every step of the way and always supportive and trying to come up with ideas to help things get moving.”

After Luhmühlen, Woods plans to go to the CCI2* at Strzegom in Poland next month to gain a qualifying score to ultimately compete at Boekelo CCIO3* in the Netherlands in October.

He will be based in Germany through December before coming home to the States to focus on building up his string at Sharon White’s Last Frontier Farm in Summit Point, West Virginia.

We wish Woods all the best at Luhmühlen and beyond!

We still have plenty of dressage action to come today at Luhmühlen, with the first part of CCI4* dressage set to kick off at 1:40 p.m./7:40 a.m EST. Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z go at 3:32 p.m./9:32 a.m. EST, with Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4 at 4:40 p.m./10:40 a.m. EST. Click here to watch live.

Click here to catch up on all of EN’s Luhmühlen coverage so far. Go Eventing.

#Luhmühlen: WebsiteEntries & ScoringTimetableEN’s CoverageEN’s InstagramEN’s Twitter

49 Pairs Accepted at Luhmühlen First Horse Inspection; 1 Spun

Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Forty-nine horses will move on to dressage at the Turniergesellschaft Luhmühlen CCI4* following this afternoon’s first horse inspection on a blustery, overcast afternoon in Germany.

The ground jury of Andrew Bennie (NZL), Sandy Phillips (GBR) and Christoph Hess (GER) sent three horses to the holding box: Aidan Keogh‘s mount Master Tredstep, Julie Tew‘s mount Simply Sox and Pippa Funnell‘s mount Billy Beware.

Following a lengthy deliberation, Master Tredstep was not accepted after re-presenting from the holding box. Both Simply Sox and Billy Beware were accepted after re-presenting.

Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Though we have just two American combinations competing in the CCI4*, both come forward with a strong chance for a top result. Massive shoutouts to super grooms Gemma Jelinksa and Mike Pendleton for having both horses sparking at the first horse inspection!

Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z, a 10-year-old KWPN (Zapatero VDL X Zonne-Trend, by French Buffet xx) owned by the Deniro Syndicate and Ocala Horse Properties, are contesting the horse’s first CCI4*.

Boyd Martin and the Shamwari 4 Syndicate’s Shamwari 4, a 16-year-old Hanoverian (Star Regent xx X Donnice, by Der Clou), finished third in the CCI4* here in 2014 and return to Luhmühlen once again in a World Equestrian Games year.

Bowties were all the rage on the jog strip today, as shown here by Ciaran Glynn with Killossery Jupiter Rising. Photo by Jenni Autry.

While 49 starters doesn’t match the record for largest CCI4* field size — 2014 holds that honor with 52 starters — this year’s field is overflowing with quality. Sam Watson of EquiRatings penned an excellent analysis piece on the field, making a case for the winner to come from the red-hot British contingent.

We also have one more American competing at Luhmühlen in Woods Baughman, who is based in Germany for the year training with Dirk Schrade and will contest the Meßmer Trophy CIC3* with his own Maverick McNamara, a 14-year-old British Warmblood (Medoc X Skippy).

Shane Rose and CP Qualified. Photo by Jenni Autry.

The CIC3* serves as the German National Championship, and with Germany electing to also use the three-star as a key WEG selection trial, the field is packed with heavy hitters like …

  • Reigning European Champions Ingrid Klimke and SAP Hale Bob OLD
  • Last year’s Luhmühlen CCI4* winners Julia Krajewski and Samourai du Thot
  • Reigning German National Champion Bettina Hoy with Designer 10
  • 2016 Luhmühlen CCI4* winners Andreas Dibowski and It’s Me xx

We are in for an exciting two days of dressage here in Germany! Dressage starts tomorrow for both the CCI4* and CIC3*, with all three of our American combinations set to go down centerline. Thursday ride times for our American crew are:

  • Woods Baughman and Maverick McNamara: 10:30 a.m./4:30 a.m. EST
  • Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z: 3:32 p.m./9:32 a.m. EST
  • Boyd Martin and Shamwari 4: 4:40 p.m./10:40 a.m. EST

Dressage for both the CCI4* and CIC3* will be streamed live on Luhmühlen’s YouTube Channel. Click here to access full details on the live streaming for the competition.

Scroll down for more photos from the first horse inspection. Keep it locked on EN for wall-to-wall coverage from Luhmühlen. Go Eventing.

#Luhmühlen: WebsiteStart Times & Live ScoringTimetable, Dressage Live StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s InstagramEN’s Twitter

Fab Freebie: Kensington SureFit Fly Sheet & Mask from SmartPak

The Kensington SureFit Protective Fly Sheet and Fly Mask in Bahama Teal. Photo courtesy of SmartPak.

Fly season is in full swing, and we are teaming up with SmartPak to give away a fly gear bundle in this week’s Fab Freebie giveaway!

The Kensington SureFit Protective Fly Sheet is made in the USA with 1000×2000 Denier Textilene fabric. It will withstand fading, mildew, grime, and rough wear and tear. It also has a contoured fit for comfort.

The Kensington Fly Mask has the same great features as the fly sheet. The new design also allows the ears and forelock to come through the top of the mask, and allows for full visibility.

The Kensington fly sheet and fly mask also come in fabulous colors: Bahama Teal, Razzleberry and Twilight Blue, plus classic staple colors in Tan, Black and Red.

Photo courtesy of SmartPak

This fly gear bundle from SmartPak also includes a bottle of OutSmart Fly Spray. Engineered to be smarter, it’s powered by Nature’s Technology, a patent-pending, innovative combination of plant-based ingredients.

Enter to win the fly gear bundle from SmartPak using the Rafflecopter widget below. Entries close at midnight EST on Saturday, and we will announce the winner in News & Notes. Good luck!

Jonty Evans Continuing Recovery from ‘Significant Brain Injury’

Jonty Evans and two of Cooley Rorkes Drift’s many thousands of supporters after his win at Belton. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Horse Sport Ireland released an update today on Jonty Evans, who remains in stable condition under the care of Beaumont Hospital’s neurological team following his fall from Cooley Rorkes Drift at Tattersalls International Horse Trials on Sunday, June 3.

“Jonty’s family would like to express their thanks to the wonderful staff at the hospital and for all the best wishes and kind messages of support that have poured in over the past days. The family appreciate that people do wish to understand the nature of Jonty’s head injury, and we can confirm that Jonty has not yet recovered consciousness after his fall.

“Although no longer under heavy sedation, further tests in the past few days have shown that it is a significant brain injury and it may take Jonty many months to recover. The Beaumont Hospital medical team continue to emphasise that every case has to be treated individually and people’s recovery rates vary case by case.”

Jonty’s family requested once again that the public do not call the hospital for information, as the heavy influx of calls interferes with the hospital’s day-to-day operations. Further updates will be issued through Horse Sport Ireland when there are changes to his condition.

The EN team continues to send our best wishes for a speedy healing for Jonty.

[Jonty Evans Update]

Woodloch Eventing Derby Provides Perfect Introduction to Sport

The team behind the inaugural Woodloch Eventing Derby, from left: Dom Schramm, Lindsey Kahn, Ingvill Ramberg, Maggie Knowles, Bear the dog, and Bill Ramberg. Photo by Ashley Schmitt/Fox River Photography.

Woodloch Stable marked a major milestone last month when the facility hosted its inaugural Eventing Derby in Hugo, Minnesota. Designed as a fun and relaxed opportunity to introduce riders and horses to the sport, the Eventing Derby attracted 61 combinations, many of whom competed in their very first show.

Held on Mother’s Day, May 13, and blessed with beautiful weather just three weeks following a blizzard, the Eventing Derby fulfilled a longtime goal for facility owners Bill and Ingvill Ramberg and event coordinator Lindsey Kahn.

Following the cancellation of Roebke’s Run, Minnesota now no longer has a USEA recognized horse trials in the state. While Otter Creek Farm in Wheeler, Wisconsin — about a 2-hour haul from Woodloch — hosts three recognized horse trials per year, making the trip can be a daunting task for event riders who are new to the sport.

“There are so many riders, particularly younger riders, who are interested in eventing but haven’t shown before,” Lindsey said. “Their parents can’t necessarily afford to spend $350 and an entire weekend to haul several hours away to a recognized horse trials and have them get eliminated due to a stop, or have show nerves and lack of experience make it too stressful to focus. Our goal was to give these families an opportunity to test the waters of eventing.”

Cadence Kuehne Welsh and Foxy. Photo by Ashley Schmitt/Fox River Photography.

Woodloch’s Eventing Derby offered an affordable introduction to eventing, with entry fees ranging from $75 to $85 depending on the level. Fix-A-Tests were also offered with dressage judge Nancy Porter, who provided constructive feedback on tests for all competitors.

The Eventing Derby offered four divisions: Introductory level with the the walk/trot USDF Intro A dressage test and a maximum jump height of 1-foot-11, Starter level with the USDF Intro C dressage test and a maximum jump height of 2-foot-3, and Beginner Novice and Novice level with the USEA dressage tests and standard jump heights.

With the Eventing Derby held on a Sunday, Woodloch hosted a jumping clinic with Dom Schramm the two days prior on the Friday and Saturday to help riders prepare. Dom is a big supporter of grassroots eventing throughout the U.S. and especially in Area IV, where he has taught clinics regularly since 2015.

Dom Schramm congratulates Addie Rinehart and Gryphon after their jumping round. Photo by Ashley Schmitt/Fox River Photography.

“We love how patient and positive Dom is with kids and green horses,” Lindsey said, “and we love watching riders and horses gain confidence and have fun during his clinics.”

Dom also designed the cross country course for the Eventing Derby and was on-hand during the show to coach riders.

“The jumping course was designed to be both inviting and also realistically show the types of obstacles riders could expect at recognized shows. Our talented jump builder Alejandro Rocha made some gorgeous new jumps,” Lindsey said.

“Dom was present during the entire show to coach riders on course if they had any green moments with their horses. Even if riders got eliminated due to refusals, they were allowed to complete the course to give their horses positive, educational outings to better prepare them for future horse trials.”

Dom zipped around the cross country course on a scooter to encourage riders and help them work through trouble on course. Riders came away with an incredibly positive experience across the board.

“Many people told us that it was their first show ever. Some parents were getting a crash course in being a horse show mom or dad, and hopefully everyone had fun and will continue their horse show adventures,” Lindsey said.

“It was fun to see so much diversity at our schooling show. Participants ranged from first-timers to veterans, kids to adults, ponies to warmbloods, off-track Thoroughbreds to stock horses, and everything in between. There were even two Shires and at least one gaited horse.”

Lindsey said the Eventing Derby would not have been possible without a slew of volunteers who generously donated their time. Local tack shop St. Croix Saddlery provided prizes for competitors and also had a mobile tack trailer at the show. Dead Broke Saddle Club allowed Woodloch to use their rodeo arena for dressage and sponsored prizes for the youth classes. County Saddlery and Smart Tie also sponsored prizes.

Sara Pugh and Impasta. Photo by Ashley Schmitt/Fox River Photography.

“My eternal gratitude goes out to everyone who helped out, whether it was during the organizational process, setting up, sponsoring prizes, offering tips and ideas, and of course during the show itself,” Lindsey said. “We had no idea how it would go over, but were so thrilled with the turnout and the number of volunteers who helped before and during the derby.”

Scroll down for a photo gallery from the Eventing Derby courtesy of Ashley Schmitt of Fox River Photography. Our hats are off to Bill, Ingvill, Lindsey, Dom, the entire Woodloch team, and all those who invested so much time and energy to furthering the grassroots level of the sport in Minnesota.

View Eventing Derby results here. Follow along with Woodloch Stable on Facebook to stay up to date on all of their events throughout the year. Go Eventing.

Is Nicola Wilson’s Bramham Save the Best of the Year?

The Equi-Trek Bramham International Horse Trials delivered a nail-biting day of cross country yesterday in West Yorkshire, England. Forty-three of the 66 starters in the CCI3* jumped clear rounds over Ian Stark’s beefy track to give us a 65% clear rate, and there proved to be plenty of drama spread throughout the course.

The most dramatic moment by far came when Nicola Wilson and One Two Many very nearly parted ways at fence 21B, the first brush in the Womble Bond Dickinson Pond. Here’s a jaw-dropping photo-by-photo replay of the save courtesy of good friend of EN Nico Morgan:

How on earth did Nicola stay on? You can watch the save on video below if you skip ahead to the 2 hour, 32 minute marker. The reactions of commentators Spencer Sturmey and Franky Reid-Warrilow are priceless!

Nicola ultimately elected to retire One Two Many on course, but the save is still massively impressive nonetheless. Be sure to like Nico Morgan’s Facebook page to see more amazing photos from Bramham and events all throughout the UK.

Click here to catch up on all of EN’s coverage from Bramham, brought to you by the one and only Tilly Berendt. Go Eventing.

Second Supreme Collapses, Dies on Bramham Cross Country Course

Chuffy Clarke and Second Supreme at Bramham. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

We are heartbroken to confirm that Chuffy Clarke’s mount Second Supreme collapsed and died on cross country today while competing in the CCI3*-Under 25 at the Equi-Trek Bramham International Horse Trials in West Yorkshire, England.

Bramham released the following statement:

“It is with great sadness that we announce that number 126, Second Supreme ridden by Chuffy Clarke and owned by Jonathan Clarke, passed away whilst competing at the Equi-Trek Bramham International Horse Trials in the British Horse Feeds u25 CCI3* in Yorkshire at around 14:00hrs on Saturday 9 June 2018.

“Second Supreme, a 16-year-old gelding, stumbled and collapsed after jumping fence 24, a trakehner, and subsequently passed away. The exact cause of death is unknown at this stage but is suspected to be of natural causes.”

Chuffy Clarke and Second Supreme. Photo by Ben Clark.

Produced to the CCI4* level by Pippa Funnell, and owned by Chuffy’s parents, Jonathan and Jane Clarke, Second Supreme was a stalwart campaigner who completed Badminton in 2015 and an additional 10 competitions at three-star level before Chuffy started riding him during the 2017 season.

Chuffy and “Ed” completed eight internationals during their partnership together, jumping clear cross country rounds in all but one run. They finished 17th in the Blenheim Palace CCI3* last year and most recently finished 28th in the Nations Cup CICO3* at Houghton Hall last month – Chuffy’s debut appearance on a senior squad. Ed also partnered Chuffy around her first three-star, at Barbury Castle last year, and her first appearance in an Event Rider Masters competition, providing an enormous amount of joy to their team and supporters.

The EN team extends our deepest condolences to Chuffy, her team, and all who knew and loved Ed. Many thanks to Ben Clark, who has taken so many marvellous photos documenting the love, respect, and trust between Chuffy and Ed, and which we are honoured to be able to share as we celebrate this great horse’s full and happy life.

Great Britain Names Nations Cup Team for Great Meadow CICO3*

Leslie Law and Voltaire De Tre. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Great Britain has announced the Nations Cup team that will compete at the Brook Ledge Great Meadow International CICO3* in The Plains, Virginia on July 6-8.

In alphabetical order, the selected combinations are:

  • Ben Hobday and his own and Jane Chambers’ Shadow Man II, an 8-year-old Belgian Warmblood (Fidjy of Colors X Favorite Van de Keezerswinning, by Winning Mood), with Rachael Foster’s Ciletto H, an 11-year-old KWPN (Royal Bravour X Silletto, by Iroko) in direct reserve
  • Leslie Law and Tre’ Book’s Voltaire De Tre, a 9-year-old Selle Francais (Gentleman IV X Jasmina du Fresne, by Socrate de Chivre)
  • Will Rawlin and Andrew and Miranda Rawlin’s VIP Vinnie, a 10-year-old Hanoverian (Valentino X Gianna Nannini, by Grosso Z)
  • Georgie Spence with her own and Suzanne Doggett’s Halltown Harley, a 12-year-old Irish Sport Horse (Harlequin du Carel X Cummer Beauty, by Clover Hill)

Following the first two legs of the 2018 FEI Nations Cup Eventing Series at Vairano and Houghton Hall, Sweden leads the standings with 150 points. France and Germany sit tied for second with 100 points, with the USA in fourth on 90 points.

Click here for more information on the FEI Nations Cup Eventing Series.

[Squad named for USA leg of the Eventing Nations Cup]