Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous very nearly smashed a North American record today at the Bromont CIC Three-Day Event in Quebec. EquiRatings confirmed to EN that their score of 19.9 (29.9 in former scoring) is the second best three-star dressage score in North America this decade, bested only by Phillip Dutton and Mystery Whisper’s score of 18.6 (27.9 in former scoring) at Red Hills in 2012.
“For scores like that the stars always have to align on the day,” Marilyn said. “Coming into this today I thought there was a possibility she could get into the teens; we eked in there. We’ve been really in sync in the training leading up to Bromont. She comes out with her briefcase every day and is so ready to work. I think we’re seeing a level of relaxation we’ve never achieved before and are able to work on more of the details in the test.”
“Kitty,” a 13-year-old Oldenburg mare (Carry Gold X Richardia, by Lario) owned by Jacqueline Mars and Phoebe and Michael Manders, is one of the five horses named to the U.S. World Equestrian Games team, and is running here at Bromont alongside her teammates for the squad’s final outing before Tryon.
This is the mare’s first FEI outing since the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event in April, where Kitty placed third to become the 2018 USEF National CCI4* Champion. She has one Open Intermediate run under her belt since Kentucky, when she cruised around Maryland Horse Trials last month alongside fellow WEG teammates Donner, Vermiculus and Tsetserleg.
“We chose our own path in terms of the prep so we were peaking right now and not doing too many competitions too early. I came here hoping for a really good week, and I have never felt her feel so good, and this is certainly the right time for that to happen,” Marilyn said.
“She is able to hold the balance and really stay seated and carry herself on her hocks through the entire test. Last year she would get a little fatigued at the end. Now she can carry herself through to the final halt.”
Marilyn and Kitty have a 5.7-penalty margin ahead of Boyd Martin and Long Island T, who sit in second place on 25.6. “Ludwig,” a 12-year-old Oldenburg/Thoroughbred (Ludwig von Bayern x Haupstsbuch Highlight, by Heraldik xx) owned by The Long Island T Syndicate, “is a dressage machine,” Boyd said, and continues to solidify his form at this level.
Boyd’s WEG mount Tsetserleg, an 11-year-old Trakehner (Windfall X Thabana, by Buddenbrock) owned by Christine Turner, scored 32.3 to sit 14th at the conclusion of dressage.
“I was really pleased with his paces and his frame and the way he went. I just had heaps of little mistakes, which is frustrating — no excuses. I’ve been concentrating a lot of the four-star test (for WEG) and didn’t work on the three-star test as much, which showed up today. He’s going really well and the quality has gotten a lot better. I have to make sure the fine details — the halts, the strike-offs, the angles, the flying changes — are spot on.”
Phillip Dutton and his WEG mount Z, a 10-year-old Zangersheide gelding (Asca X Bellabouche, by Babouche VH Gehucht Z) owned by the Z Partnership, were the first pair to go this morning and sit in third place on a personal best score of 27.1.
“I worked on keeping him a little more uphill than what I have before, and he handled it all well,” Phillip said. “It’s been a good preparation. We’ve been here for a few days and could concentrate on the test. It’s just attention to detail at this point. I was pleased with the way he settled, and he did his job very well.”
We have a three-way tie for fourth place in the CIC3*. Selena O’Hanlon leads the way for Canada with John and Judy Rumble’s Foxwood High on 28.0, with U.S. WEG alternates Kim Severson and The Cooley Cross Border Syndicate’s Cooley Cross Border and Lynn Symansky and Mary Ann Ghadban’s Under Suspection tied on the same score.
Lynn Symansky and her WEG team horse Donner, a 15-year-old Thoroughbred (Gorky Park X Smart Jane, by Smarten) owned by The Donner Syndicate, scored 28.1 to sit in seventh place.
Our other U.S. WEG team pair, Lauren Kieffer and Jacqueline Mars’s Vermiculus, scored 32.4 to put the 11-year-old Anglo-Arabian gelding (Serazim X Wake Me Gently) in 15th place.
Looking to the CIC2*, Jessica Phoenix holds the top two spots on the leaderboard with her own Pavarotti and The Bentley’s Best Group’s Bentley’s Best on scores of 30.5 and 30.9, respectively.
Matt Brown and Anna Honeycutt’s Fernhill Chico lead the CIC* on 23.4, with Michael Nolan and Kara Andrew’s Bad Moon Rising topping the CIC*-Under 25 leaderboard on 27.8.
We have to give a special shout out to Helen Christie, Christian Landolt and Rossana Lagunes, all of whom spontaneously formed a ground jury for the Training divisions and gave the riders the incredible privilege of being judged by a panel of three top FEI judges.
Lauren Kieffer and Jacqueline Mars’s Get Gaudi lead the Open Training division on 22.1. Amanda Beale Clement and Megan Wilson’s BE Kilgoric Felix lead the Training Young Rider division on 26.9. Thank you to the volunteers and everyone in the office who processed those extra Training tests!
Looking ahead to tomorrow, the action on Marc Donovan’s show jumping course starts with the CIC3* at 8:30 a.m., followed by the CIC2* at 10:51 a.m., CIC* at 12:48 p.m. and Training at 2:49 p.m. Cross country for all divisions will be held Sunday. Click here for a fence-by-fence preview of Derek di Grazia’s CIC3* track. Go Eventing.