By the Numbers: American Eventing Championships Advanced

The masses have converged on the Tryon Equestrian Center and the Nutrena American Eventing Championships are in full swing even as we speak. Although the lower levels began their competition yesterday, the Advanced held out until today before doing dressage.

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Photo courtesy of Tryon International Equestrian Center

The Event

  • In the past three runnings, the ultimate winner of the division was within 1.5 points of the leader after dressage.
  • Despite a high completion rate due to the championship caliber of the field, it has been historically difficult to make the time on cross country. In the last three runnings, only one pair in 55 starters has accomplished a clear round inside the time.

Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Dressage Divas

  • Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous boast the only dressage average in the field to break into the twenties, clocking in at a 27.2 for the level over the past two years. This horse generally hovers in the mid-twenties and has only once received a score less than 70% for the level.
  • Who’s A Star and Courtney Cooper have a long track record of scoring in the low thirties or high twenties, averaging a 30.2 overall for the level. Although their consistency varies, they are a good bet to be right near the top on the first day.
  • Cambalda hasn’t quite regained his consistency following his time off, but considering he has placed in the top three of all three of his CIC3* starts this year, it hasn’t hurt him any. He and Jennie Brannigan are averaging a 31.5 for the 2017 show season thus far, a couple points higher than their three-star average back in 2015.
  • I’m Sew Ready puts in scores that vary heavily within a ten point range of 25 to 35, giving him an overall average of 32.1 . When he is really on, he and Phillip Dutton have hit scores as low as 26.8 before.

Lisa Marie Fergusson and Honor Me. Photo by Leslie Threlkeld.

Cross Country Machines

  • Lisa Marie Fergusson and Honor Me have racked up an impressive cross country resume over the past two years, clocking in ten clear CIC3* or Advanced rounds at an average of eight seconds over optimum. All were within twenty seconds of the time allowed and three were inside the time.
  • Vandiver and Doug Payne have been speedsters over the past two calendar years, racking up ten rounds within twenty seconds of optimum out of twelve CIC3* and Advanced runs.

Jennie Brannigan and Cambalda. Photo courtesy of Rare Air Photography.

Show Jumping Powerhouses

  • Cambalda and Jennie Brannigan are extremely strong in the stadium phase, with only one rail in their last eleven CIC3*/Advanced rounds. They haven’t had a single rail yet since Cambalda’s return to competition this year.
  • Lup the Loop has eight career starts at the Advanced and CIC3* level with Kylie Lyman in the irons, and he has had a rail at only one of them.
  • Vandiver and Doug Payne are going for their seventh consecutive clear CIC3*/A stadium round this weekend…the last rail they had cost them the win at last year’s American Eventing Championships.
  • RF Scandalous and Marilyn Little have only ever had one rail since the mare stepped up to the 3* level. This will be RF Scandalous’ first Advanced, after seven 3* attempts and one 4* run.

PREDICTED WINNER: Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous

Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous. Photo by Shelby Allen.

Keep Your Eye On:

  • Doug Payne and Vandiver
  • Jennie Brannigan and Cambalda
  • Phillip Dutton and I’m Sew Ready
  • Phillip Dutton and Mr. Candyman