2013 Les Etoiles de Pau CCI4*


The final four-star of the northern hemisphere is upon us: Les Etoiles de Pau (The Stars of Pau, for the rest of us).  North America has sent 11 riders to Pau; with longterm sights set on the 2014 WEG in Normandy, it helps to get familiar with the French xc course designer Pierre Michelet.  Canada’s hopes rest with Shandiss McDonald (Rockfield Grant Juan), Kathryn Robinson (Let It Bee), Peter Barry (Kilrodan Abbott), and Hawley Bennett-Awad (Gin N Juice).  The USA sends out Phillip Dutton (Mr. Medicott), Michael Pollard (Mensa), Hannah Sue Burnett (Harbour Pilot), Kristi Nunnink (R-Star), Lynn Symansky (Donner), Marilyn Little (RF Demeter), and Clark Montgomery (Universe).  EN’s own Jenni Autry and Kate Samuels are on location to bring us the best event coverage anywhere.  Stay tuned to more from Pau!

Pau Links: [Website] [Dressage Times] [Live Scores] [Course Preview]


Sunday 10/27 

Top 10 Memorable Moments from Pau + Final Press Conference Video – Read about Kate and Jenni’s favorite moments from Pau, ranging from trade fair candy to “the wave” during William Fox-Pitt’s victory gallop.

Pau Show Jumping Video Gallery – Ten videos of showjumping at Pau, including William Fox-Pitt’s winning round, Andrew Nicholson, and the North Americans.

William Seals the Deal, Americans Power Through in Wild Pau Finale – Rails were flying in the show jumping finale at Pau, but William Fox-Pitt still managed to come out with the win.  American Phillip Dutton finished fourth.  Read the full wrap-up from Jenni.

Two Down for Michael Pollard, Shandiss McDonald at Pau – Michael Pollard and Mensa and Shandiss McDonald and Rockfield Grant Juan both jumped in the first group to go in the show jumping at Pau, and each pulled two rails.

All Horses Pass Final Inspection at Pau – All 50 horses presented for the final jog at Pau passed.  See photos of the North Americans at the horse inspection.


Saturday, 10/26

Pau Social Media Roundup – Cross Country Day – Sally summarizes riders’ and spectators’ comments on Pau’s cross-country from facebook and twitter.

Video: William Fox-Pitt and Cool Mountain at Pau XC – View William’s entire round on Cool Mountain as he went double clear on Pau’s cross-country.

Team USA Recaps a Successful Day at Pau – Jenni interviews the American riders, who reflect on the day’s cross-country at Pau.

Pau: William Fox-Pitt For President, Four Americans in Top 12 – Jenni discusses the success of the American riders, and includes a video of the press conference.

Pau Cross Country Proves Influential – Kate wraps up cross-country day at Pau, which found William Fox-Pitt in first, second, and third, followed by Phillip Dutton in fourth.  It was a great day for the Americans, as four of them sit in the top 12.

Pau CCI4* Cross Country Live Updates – Jenni gives ride-by-ride updates throughout the day, beginning and ending with clear rounds by William Fox-Pitt.


Friday, 10/25

Social Media Round-Up, Day Two Dressage: Sally gathers several photos, tweets, and other updates from the various riders, grooms and members of the press at the event at Pau after two days of dressage.

David O’Connor Talks Team USA at Pau: Chef d’Equipe David O’Connor was kind enough to sit down with Kate and Jenni following all of the dressage performances. He speaks to the improvements in Team USA and how far we have to go before we are truly competitive in the European circuit.David talks   about the cross country course at Pau, and how he has instructed the US riders to approach it tomorrow. Video interview.

Day Two Wrap Up, Plus Interviews with Lucinda Fredericks & William Fox-Pitt –  After two days of dressage, Lucinda Fredericks is on top with William Fox-Pitt following her on all three of his mounts. In this post, we have Kate’s thoughts on the overall performance of different teams in the dressage, plus personal interviews with Lucinda and William concerning their dressage rides and their thoughts on the XC course tomorrow.

Marilyn Little Breaks Down Her Dressage Test at Pau –  Marilyn Little was kind enough to chat with me after walking the cross-country course this afternoon following her dressage test with RF Demeter. As Marilyn said in the interview, she lost points along the way for little things here and there, and there’s no room for error at a big four-star competition like Les Etoiles de Pau.

Lucinda Fredericks and Flying Finish Win the Dressage at Pau – Lucinda Fredericks and Flying Finish scored 39.2 to just sneak into the 30s — the only pair to ultimately do so — and win the dressage with a lovely test in the final group to go today.

Phillip Dutton and Mr. Medicott Deliver at Pau – Phillip Dutton and Mr. Medicott ended the morning session of dressage here at Les Etoiles de Pau on a very positive note, scoring 44.2 in their test to moving into fifth place at the lunch break.

Lynn Symansky Talks Dressage at Pau with Donner – It’s been a busy morning in the Team USA camp, as we’ve already had three Americans ride their dressage tests here at Les Etoiles de Pau. Lynn Symansky and Donner were third out this morning, scoring 53.3 to sit in 21st currently.


Thursday 10/24

Pau Day One Wrap Up + William Fox-Pitt and Andrew Nicholson Interviews – We had private interviews with both William and Andrew following the end of dressage, and they both agreed that they had good days (although William was kind enough to Jenni to elaborate a little more than Andrew) and thought that their horses performed to the right standard.

Hannah Sue Burnett and Harbour Pilot Set the Bar for Team USA –  Hannah Sue Burnett was kind enough to swing by the press tent after her dressage test to talk about her ride with Harbour Pilot; they scored 45.7 to tie for fifth place overnight with Andreas Dibowski and FRH Fantasia.

William Fox-Pitt and Seacookie TSF Lead at Pau – William Fox-Pitt held the lead for almost the entire first day of dressage here at Les Etoiles de Pau, and he bested his score from this morning as the second to last test of the day with Seacookie TSF, taking the lead on 41.5. Seacookie finished second at Rolex this year behind Andrew Nicholson and Quimbo, who were the final pair to go today and are tied for second place with William and Neuf des Coeurs on a score of 43.2.

William Fox-Pitt and Neuf Des Coeurs Lead the Way at Pau – William Fox-Pitt and Neuf Des Coeurs kicked us off here on the first day of dressage at Les Etoiles de Pau, and they set the early benchmark, scoring 43.2 to hold the early lead over Andreas Dibowski and FRH Fantasia.


Wednesday 10/23

Pau Social Media Roundup – Jog Day – Pau is officially underway, and the North American contingent all jogged sharply today and look primed for action this weekend.

Bienvenue a Pau! – We have arrived in France, settled in at the Domaine de Sers in Pau and already begun our blitz of the grounds. The weather here is positively tropical (I walked the course barefoot earlier today), the setting is beautiful and the horses are fit.

All Horses Pass First Inspection at Pau CCI4* – Seventy-five horses presented to the ground jury this afternoon in the first horse inspection at the Pau CCI4*. Two were sent to the holding box — Emily Llewellyn’s mount Junior and Merel Blom’s mount Rumour Has It; both horses passed upon reinspection. All seven horses for Team USA and four horses for Team Canada looked fantastic.