Abby Powell
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Abby Powell


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About Abby Powell

Abby Powell is a native of Northeastern Massachusetts who splits her time between commuting into Boston for work and caring for and riding her rescue Mustang x Arab mare, Maggie.

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Monday News & Notes from Fleeceworks

Benjamin Massie displays his orange armband, as does Arnaud Boiteau, pictured in the background. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

It was hard not to think of 24-year-old French eventer Thibault Fournier yesterday during the final phase at Les 5 Etoiles de Pau, the event he most memorably won last year in his first attempt at the level. Thibault, who suffered a catastrophic fall on cross country at a horse trials earlier this month, is on the long road to recovery after awakening from a six-day-long coma. Most recently he’s been able to eat some food after coming off of respiratory assistance. Thibault’s French teammates brought him along for their rides during yesterday’s show jumping in the form of orange armbands — a touching tribute to their friend.

National Holiday: National Chocolate Day

Major Events:

5 Etoiles de Pau: WebsiteForm GuideFinal ScoresEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

U.S. Weekend Results:

Waredaca 3DE & H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Windermere Run H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Chattahoochee Hills H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Holly Hill H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Your Monday News & Notes:

In the midst of another devastating wildfire, Northern California needs help. Hurricane force winds have stoked the flames of the Kincade Fire, which now covers 30,000 acres and are only 10% contained. The Northern California Association of Equine Practitioners has issued an official request for assistance, particularly from California-licensed veterinarians and technicians with large animal or livestock/ruminant experience. Volunteers and supplies are also needed at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds. [North California Association of Equine Practitioners]

Remember Colleen Rutledge’s mount Escot 6? He’s a show jumper now! Over the weekend, “Monkey” won the $10,000 Adult Amateur Jumper Championship at the Washington International Horse Show with his new rider Charlotte Powers. [Former Event Horse Finds New Fame At WIHS]

With the conclusion of Pau, we can look back on a wild season of European upper-level eventing. Horse & Hound recounts some of the most bizarre and unexpected thing that happened during the 2019 season. [From comeback wins to falls to errant pedestrians: 12 surprises of the 2019 eventing season]

Monday Featured Video: The Headless Horseman made his annual appearance at Keeneland over the weekend.

Headless Horsemen 2019

An unusual sighting at Keeneland this afternoon! The Headless Horseman made a spooky appearance on the track. Happy early Halloween!

Posted by Keeneland on Saturday, October 26, 2019

Watch Pau CCI5*-L Cross Country Live (in French!)

Cross country action is underway at Les 5 Etoiles de Pau, the final European five-star of the year, and while you need a subscription to Horse & Country TV to watch today’s phase with English commentary, the event is live streaming its French broadcast on YouTube (player embedded above.)

Make sure you familiarize yourself with the track via Tilly Berendt’s course preview as well. Amusez-vous bien!

5 Etoiles de Pau: WebsiteEntriesForm GuideLive ScoresLive StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Weekly OTTB Wishlist Presented by Cosequin: FHI Winner Paddy the Caddy Is an Aftercare Success Story

Frank McEntee proudly poses with Paddy the Caddy, a horse he originally bred for racing, after their big Fair Hill win. Photo by Abby Powell.

Still owned by one of his original breeders, Frank McEntee, and having previously been race trained at the Fair Hill Training Center, 12-year-old Paddy the Caddy‘s story came full circle this weekend when he and Erin Sylvester won the 31st, and final, running of the CCI4*-L at the Dutta Corp./ Fair Hill International Three-Day Event.

Bred in Ireland by Frank McEntee and David O’Reilly, “Paddy”(Azamour – Slamy, by Grand Slam) was too small to be a sales prospect as a yearling, so Mr. McEntee chose to import him to the U.S. and placed him in training with Graham Motion who bases his program at the Fair Hill Training Center. Paddy only ended up clocking in a handful of timed workouts and never started in a race, so Mr. McEntee took him home and turned him out for a few months before asking Erin Sylvester, who his daughter was taking lessons with, if she could restart him and eventually turn him into a mount for his daughter.

After a fews months working with Paddy, Erin had other ideas: she saw the makings of an event horse in him. Paddy made his Novice level debut  in 2012 and his Advanced debut in 2016 with Erin as his sole rider and with Mr. McEntee supporting him through his entire career.

In honor of Paddy the Caddy, this week we’re featuring three unassuming bay geldings you could call your own. Who knows what they could eventually achieve?

Robbie Jones. Photo via CANTER IL.

Robbie Jones (SHACKLEFORD – SILVER BLOSSOM, BY BERNARDINI): 2014 16.0-hand Kentucky-bred gelding

Robbie Jones is coming off the track after 19 starts and $14,662 in earnings. He had a few good finishes early in his career, but lately he’s been at the bottom of the pack so it’s time for him to move on and see if he has a different athletic calling. His lovely uphill build, shoulder, and neck paired with powerful hindquarters make it look like he has all the makings of an event horse.

Located at Fairmount Park Race Track in Collinsville, Illinois.

View Robbie Jones on CANTER Illinois.

Medical Marvel. Photo via Finger Lakes Finest Thoroughbreds.

Medical Marvel (POSSE – ROLLICKING AFFAIR, BY BLACK TIE AFFAIR (IRE)): 2015 16.2-hand New York-bred gelding

Don’t worry — this guy isn’t actually a medical marvel! He’s retiring sound after a few published workouts, but remains unraced. He’s been aptly nicknamed “Big Dude” around the barn, but he’s really a gentle giant. Big Dude is already getting to know what life off the track if all about and has been enjoying some turnout time on the farm with a group of other horses. He’s also already being taught to lunge, including over ground poles which he found to be no big deal, and appears to have a great attitude about going to work.

Located near Rochester, New York.

View Medical Marvel on Finger Lakes Finest Thoroughbreds.

Drewmisterio. Photo via New Vocations Racehorse Adoption.

Drewmisterio (REDDING COLLIERY – WINLOC’S SUNSHINE, BY DISTINCTIVE PRO): 2014 17.0-hand Louisiana-bred gelding

You need to check out Drewmisterio’s under saddle photos, because after just five rides the folks at New Vocations have pegged him as a serious upper-level prospect due in part to his spectacular canter. This big, uphill-built, and athletic guy and can be a bit exuberant under saddle, but never in a bad way. On the ground, “Drew” is a total gentleman and loves soaking in attention. After making 2 starts and earning a respectable $74,620 on the track, Drew is already happily hacking out on the trails, walking through water, and trotting over ground poles.

Located in Covington, Louisiana.

View Dremisterio on New Vocations Racehorse Adoption

This Week in Horse Health News Presented by MediVet Equine

As horse owners and competitors, we want to give our equine athletes every opportunity to feel and perform their best. Keeping up to date with the latest news in horse health and medicine is an important part of that, and it’s why Medivet Equine is bringing you the latest in horse health news each week.

Following the medical model of “do no harm”, MediVet Equine develops scientifically based therapeutics enabling the horse to call on its own healing ability, thus achieving its full performance potential. MediVet Equine provides effective, all natural, drug free products and lab services designed to optimize the overall health of performance horses. They specialize in regenerative treatments that help the body heal itself to get stronger naturally. Boyd Martin has several of his top competitive mounts on MediVet ACS, and has had terrific results!

How can we better recognize horses with mild or moderate asthma? The increased respiratory rate and cough of a severely asthmatic horse is fairly easy to spot, but mild and moderate cases may only present as poor performance. Veterinarians maybe have been underestimating the number of horses that suffer from asthma for that reason. Currently, equine asthma is diagnosed by a physical exam plus a bronchoalveolar lavage (commonly called a “lung wash”). Asthma is caused by inflammation (something MediVet CAS can help with!) in the airways and veterinarians are now looking for biomarkers in the blood that are indicative of lung inflammation. Future research could create a simple blood test for asthma diagnosis. [The Horse]

Future veterinarians will soon have two new options for schools to attend. The American Veterinary Medical Association’s Council on Education recently issued “Letters of Reasonable Assurance” of accreditation to new veterinary medicine programs at Long Island University and the University of Arizona. Both programs will welcome their inaugural class in 2020 and will issue Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM) degrees. Long Island University’s program will be a traditional four-year program, while the University of Arizona will offer an accelerated three-year program. [Today’s Veterinary Business]

What can a horse owner do about thin soles? Horses with thin soles can be tough to keep sound, as they tend to develop sole bruises more easily. While breed and hoof conformation can play an inherent role in sole thickness — hot-blooded horses like Thoroughbreds and horses that have less of a “cup” shape to the underside of their hoof tend to have thinner soles — but there are a few things horse owners can do to help their horses grow thicker soles. Most ways have to do with methods of trimming and shoeing, but supplements and topical products can help too. [Paulick Report]

Wednesday Video from Kentucky Performance Products: Off to Ocala Jockey Club!

Fair Hill International is in the rearview mirror now, so the East Coast eventing community will turn their attention to the next long-format offered on this side of the country: the Ocala Jockey Club International 3-Day Event which will be held November 14-17 in Reddick, Florida.

In this promotional video, you’ll hear from locally-based eventing superstars Clayton Fredericks, Katie Ruppel, Leslie Law, Lesley Grant Law, plus renowned course designer Mike Etherington-Smith. They share what makes OJC such a great event and you might even catch a few hints about what to expect on course as well!

Poor hooves causing lameness?

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  • Supports the regrowth of healthy hoof after injury or surgery.

For more information, visit

Who Jumped It Best? Fair Hill International CCI3*-L Edition

With the dawning of cross country day at the 2019 Dutta Corp./ Fair Hill International Three-Day Event in Elkton, Maryland, came the usual pre-cross country excitement and tension. Riders warmed up and found their zen while officials, volunteers, and media shuffled about the course on the sunny morning staking their spots and waiting with bated breath for the first rider on course. I’m sure all said a silent prayer that it would be a safe and beautiful day of sport — I know I did.

As a photographer, the light was a bit difficult to work with during the early parts of Saturday (though there were no complaints given the previous few days weather!) casting shadows in the wrong direction of some of the more desirable fences to shoot. Despite being primarily back lit, I couldn’t help parking myself on the downhill side of Fence 7AB, the Duane Morris Open Oxer and Corner, for a few early riders on course because it lent itself to capturing the horses’ impressive leaps over the A element, the big open oxer set with MIM clip technology. Frankly, it just looked [email protected]$$!

This combination did, however, cause a few problems for some riders: mostly glance-offs at the B element, a right-handed brush corner a sloping six strides away, but also a few falls (all horses and riders are fine!) The riders below were able to tackle it with total finesse.

While we invite you to vote for who you think presents the best overall picture over the jump, all of these horses and riders deserve massive credit for a job well done and a jump well-ridden!

Alyssa Peterson and R-Perfect Storm. Photo by Abby Powell.

Ashley MacVaugh and Latino H. Photo by Abby Powell.

Babette Lenna Gonyea and Marketscan. Photo by Abby Powell.

Booli Selmayr and Millfield Lancado. Photo by Abby Powell.

Cosby Green and Highly Suspicious. Photo by Abby Powell.

Monday Video: Your Fair Hill Helmet Cam Hookup

I’ve heard riders say that if you take a horse to the Dutta Corp. Fair Hill International Three-Day Event and they do well across Derek di Grazia’s four-star track, then you’re likely sitting on a good Kentucky horse. Having never actually been there until this year, I hadn’t fully understood that sentiment — but I do now.

The Fair Hill CCI4*-L track is all the superlatives: it’s big, it’s bold, and it asks a lot of fair but difficult questions. It’s a true championship track, and it’s even more impressive in person than on the live stream or in photos.

Sadly, this was the last running of the four-star, as it will make way for Fair Hill to host the inaugural Maryland Five-Star next year instead. While riders are excited to have the option of a fall five-star in the country, many echoed that it was also a bit sad to be running the four-star in this particular track for the last time.

If you missed ever watching the Fair Hill CCI4*-L in person, the next best way to get a healthy sense of respect and awe for the course might be to watch some helmet cam footage! Doug Payne posted an edit of his helmet cam footage aboard Vandiver, a 15-year-old Trakehner owned in partnership with Debbie Crowley, with whom he finished the weekend in 10th place after being assessed a frustrating 15 penalties for knocking a flag.

Posted by Lainey Ashker on Saturday, October 19, 2019

To get an idea for the scope of the terrain at Fair Hill, be sure to also watch Lainey Ashker‘s helmet cam footage of her round in the CCI3*-L division aboard Lost In Ireland, a 9-year-old Irish Sport Horse owned by Steven Guy. Lainey had an unfortunate runout at the B element of fence 5, which she attributes to pilot error, but had a fabulous round otherwise. If you have your sound on, don’t worry: that’s Lainey being hard on herself, not her horse! We are own worst critics.

#DuttaFHI: WebsiteCCI ScoringYEH ScoringEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Sylvester and Paddy the Caddy Steal Four-Star Crown in Exciting Fair Hill Finale

Erin Sylvester and Paddy the Caddy. Photo by Abby Powell.

Erin Sylvester didn’t need to wait long for her final placing to be decided in the 2019 Dutta Corp Fair Hill International Three-Day. With her back still facing the ring after jumping a double clear round over Marc Donovan’s CCI4*-L show jumping course, overnight leaders Waylon Roberts and Lancaster tipped a pole on the first fence. With 3.2 penalty points separating the top two spots, that pole meant Erin and Paddy the Caddy would be crowned The Dutta Corp./USEF CCI4*-L Eventing National Champions.

“He felt a little tired, but he has endless heart and tries to do the best every time he in the ring. He jumped great. He was rideable. He used to be a little wild show jumping, but he isn’t that way anymore which is nice,” Erin said.

Erin and “Paddy”, a 12-year old Thoroughbred gelding owner by herself and Frank McEntee, began their weekend in 8th place after a windy day of dressage. They very nearly turned in a double clear round across the country on Saturday, but ultimately added only a single cross country time penalty to their initial score after a delivering a double clear show jumping round under pressure in less than ideal rainy conditions to finish their weekend on a score of 34.3.

“I really, really dislike show jumping in the rain. I feel like I am all over the tack and I felt that way today. Fortunately he jumps straight and stays in a rhythm, so I just try to hold on.”

Erin Sylvester and Paddy the Caddy. Photo by Abby Powell.

“The cross-country walked really, really tough to me,” she recounted. “I kept trying to compare to Kentucky in some aspects I felt there were some combinations that felt Kentucky caliber or a bit tougher. It was fun to get all that stuff behind us yesterday and look forward to today.”

“This has been my goal to get this event done and done well for awhile now. We have hit a few bumps in the road through the season, so it was great to put that all behind us and have a good weekend. I had a less than perfect run at Kentucky this spring, so I came here with the plan that we belonged at the level and that we were competitive at the level and hopefully set up for a good run at Kentucky next year.”

Erin and Paddy have a special partnership, as she’s worked with the full Thoroughbred gelding since he was a 3-year-old. She considers him to be her first really competitive horse which she says is exciting, but also comes with it’s own set of pressures:

“I feel like I might be doing him wrong on the flat. If I have a rail on him it is entirely my fault. And on the cross-country I just have to prepare him well and get him to the jumps the right way,” she said.

“He has so much heart and he really loves this sport. It has taken him really to this year to be very confident. He has been a cautious horse and as he was coming along it would have been very easy to scare him, but he is confident and has a blast out there now.”

That moment when your crew and friends realize you’ve won. Photo by Abby Powell.

And of course, the winner of the The Dutta Corp./USEF CCI4*-L Eventing National Championship receives the generous prize of a flight for their horse anywhere in the world. The burning question at the final press conference was therefore what overseas venture with Paddy might Erin have in mind?

“I would love to get Paddy to Burghley,” she said, though was cautious to mention that she’d only take him hen the timing is right. “It is really exciting to know that Derek is going to be the designer there. He is definitely Paddy’s favorite designer hands down. We have to manage him really carefully and kind of strike when the iron is hot with him.”

Mia Farley and BGS Firecracker. Photo by Abby Powell.

With the withdrawal of the third placed pair Lauren Kieffer and D.A. Duras before the the final horse inspectionMia Farley and her own BGS Firecracker moved up from 4th overnight to finish as Reserve Champions in The Dutta Corp./USEF CCI4*-L Eventing National Championship and, at 19 years of age, received the USET Foundation’s Markham Trophy for the highest-placed U.S. young rider in the CCI4*-L.

Moving up from 22nd position after dressage thanks to finishing on that score of 38.3, the West Coast native didn’t expect to find herself in such a competitive position on the final day.

“It was a little stressful. I overall had so much fun all week and I feel very lucky to be here. Coming from California it has always been a goal of mine to come to Fair Hill and experience the track, and I never thought that I could have had the finish that I did,” she said.

Mia, who has been a part of the U25 Eventing program, made the move to the East Coast thanks to the program. She initially planned to train with David O’Connor for just three months, but three months turned into a year and a half and she is now giving full-time eventing a shot. She’s been partnered “Crackers”, 9-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare since 2017.

“I am lucky to have my horse. David has been very on board with everything, thank goodness. Karen helps me a bit back home. David has helped me a lot with my horse. Our connection when I first got her wasn’t quite there, and he has been a tremendous help to our partnership.”

“She always tries her heart out for me. She saved me a few a times on cross-country,” Mia recounted. “Cross-country was so much fun. It was going so well in the beginning I thought something must be wrong. It rode really well for us. She kept her gallop going the whole way round and I think she had a lot of fun.”

Of note, Mia also was crowned the USEF Young Rider Eventing National Championship, which is awarded to the t finishing fine between the ages of 16 and 21 in the CCI3*-L, thanks to her 11th place finish in that division with Fernhill Fine Diamond, an 11-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare owned by Charlotte Zovighian.

Jenny Caras and Fernhill Fortitude. Photo by Abby Powell.

Third placed finishers Jenny Caras and her long-time partner Fernhill Fortitude, owned by the Fernhill Fortitude Syndicate, were another pair who jumped leaps and bounds up the leaderboard thanks to finishing on their dressage score of 40.0.

“I was pretty disappointed with the dressage on Friday because he is quite a tricky horse on the flat, but he always tries really hard,” Jenny said of the 15-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding. “Unfortunately I didn’t have quite the test I was hoping for. He was mistake free, but we lacked a bit of the wow factor of some of the other riders.”

Fabulous jumping rounds made up for it, however, and Jenny was particularly excited to contest the CCI4*-L at Fair Hill for the fourth time in her career.

“I love riding at Fair Hill and I love riding around Derek di Grazia’s tracks. It is so nice as a rider to go out on cross-country and trust that the course designer has set you a track that you can really ride forward and bold to,” she said. “I knew my horse could get the trip and I knew what he felt like around the course, so it was just nice to go out to do what I know to do on him. He was excellent and he finished full of running.”

“In the past show jumping has been a bit tricky for us, but I spent a lot of time this winter working on him. I used to put him in a lot of hackamores and bigger bits to help me hold him, but now I have just taken him back to a snaffle and really focused on getting the jumps to hold him, so he was great. He went out in show jumping and tried his heart out.”

Sydney Elliot and QC Diamantaire. Photo by Abby Powell.

Fourth place is occupied by Sydney Elliott and the lovely QC Diamantaire, owned by Carol Stephens. This horse and rider pair has been catching the eye of U.S. Eventing and are certainly ones to watch. They were on Erik Duvander’s winning teams for both North American Futures Team Challenges at Carolina International and at Bromont this spring, plus were named a reserve pair for the 2019 Pan American team. They finished their weekend on a score of 40.2, after adding only bit on cross country time to their dressage score.

Phillip Dutton and Fernhill Singapore. Photo by Abby Powell.

Phillip Dutton jumped two fault-free rounds on the final day of competition. Fernhill Singapore, his younger mount in the division, a 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood owned by Ann Jone, Thomas Tierney, and David Vos, was piloted to a fifth place finish (42.4) also with just a few time penalties across the country to add to his dressage score.

Phillip’s more seasoned mount, Z, an 11-year-old Zangersheide gelding owned by The Z Partnership, also finished within the top ten. Their final score of 44.4 was enough to earn then seventh place despite incurring 15 penalties on cross country due to the controversial flag rule — more on that another time.

Meghan O’Donoghue and Palm Crescent. Photo by Abby Powell.

Meghan O’Donoghue and Palm Crescent, a 13-year-old Thoroughbred gelding owned by Chase and Darcie Shipka, just barely slipped from their overnight fifth place to finish in 6th after knocking a single rail to add 4 faults to their dressage score. They finished the weekend with 42.6.

Waylon Roberts and Lancaster. Photo by Abby Powell.

Overnight leaders Waylon Roberts and Lancaster, the 12-year-old Canadian Sport Horse gelding owned by Michelle and John Koppin, ended their weekend in 8th place with a score of 47.1, after ultimately taking four rails in the final phase.

Allison Springer and Business Ben. Photo by Abby Powell.

Ninth place went to Allison Springer and Business Ben who finished one second over the clock in their show jumping round and also added time across the country for a final score of 47.3.

Doug Payne and Vandiver. Photo by Abby Powell.

Doug Payne and his upper-level partner Vandiver, the 15-year-old Trakehner owned in partnership with Debbie Crowley, were another victim of the 15 penalty flag ruling on cross country, but even so, their final score of 47.5 still earned them a top ten finish.

13 out of the 29 CCI4*-L pairs who jumped on Sunday delivered double clear rounds over the Marc Donovan-designed course. Those who ultimately finished outside the top ten but rode completely cleanly on the final day were: Clayton Fredericks and FE Always In Time (11th), Will Coleman and Dondante (12th), Alexandra MacLeod and Newmarket Jack (13th), Mike Pendleton and Steady Eddie (14th), Colleen Rutledge and Covert Rights (18th), and Will Faudree and Michael 233 (20th).

Thanks for hanging in there with us for the final CCI4*-L at Fair Hill! It’s been a particularly exciting weekend of sport and, though this is our last official report from the event, we still have a few extras to bring you including a massive cross county day photo gallery. Be on the lookout for more, and Go Eventing.

#DuttaFHI: WebsiteFinal ScoresLive Stream ReplayEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

It’s Blue for Baughman: CCI3*-L Champions Crowned at Fair Hill International

Woods Baughman and C’est La Vie 135. Photo by Abby Powell.

The overnight CCI3*-L leader after yesterday’s cross country, 23-year-old Woods Baughman, could finally breathe easy after jumping the last fence of Marc Donovan’s Dutta Corp Fair Hill International Three-Day show jumping course. His double clear round meant he held on to the top spot in the division, and became the 2019 USEF CCI3*-L National Eventing Champion aboard C’est La Vie.

“I was so happy when he made it over the last rail,” Woods said. “I could breathe for the first time since yesterday afternoon.”

Woods said that the 11-year-old Hanoverian gelding was a little tired this morning, but quickly got back to business when Woods took him out for a morning ride and the pelting rain that came down during the three-star finale helped to keep him keen as well.

“He immediately snapped back to and gave me everything he had, and this afternoon he was right there with me,” said Woods.

Woods Baughman and C’est La Vie 135. Photo by Abby Powell.

The partnership between Woods and “Contendro” is a relatively newer one, as the Baughman family purchased the gelding from Dirk Schrade last December after Woods had spent the year training in Germany.

“I didn’t like [Contendro] too much in the beginning,” Woods admitted. “I thought Dirk was joking when he said to buy him, but once I actually bought him he’s an amazing horse. We’re actually quite similar. We both like to go and get a little big and jump things. Once we put it to, it clicked right away.

It clicked particularly well over the past few days for this duo, as this is actually the first time as a partnership that they have finished on their dressage score (27.6). No time like the present, particularly when the pressure is on, to cash in your best showing yet.

Woods is excited to move Contendro back up to the Advanced level next year — he completed two at the level this fall, along with a top-ten Intermediate finish at the American Eventing Championships — and would like to complete two four-stars in 2020 with the goal of competing in his first five-star at Kentucky 2021. Watch out world — Woods is on his way.

Colleen Loach and Vermont. Photo by Abby Powell.

Representing Canada, Colleen Loach and Vermont also delivered a double clear show jumping round which meant that they kept their second place position just a single point behind the leaders.

“I’m thrilled with Monty. He was jumping me out of the tack in warm up and he continued to jump really well in the course,” Colleen said. “He handled the weather and the atmosphere really well, so I’m proud of him.”

Thrilled with how fresh the horse felt this morning, the future is looking very bright for the 7-year-old Hanoverian owned by Peter Barry. Colleen plans to take it take it slow in continuing to bring the 18-hand gelding along to the top level. She’ll spend at least another year at Intermediate, whole-heartedly believing that mileage at that level is key to a horse’s development, confidence, and ultimately their success. And with what she thinks could be a future Team Canada horse on her hands, she’s happy to give Monty all the time he needs.

Caitlin Silliman and Ally KGO. Photo by Abby Powell.

Caitlin Silliman and Holly Payne Caravella shared their score of 29.8 through all three days of competition, but in the event of a tie the higher placement goes to the pair who came closer to the optimum time across the country. Coming in with just one second in hand yesterday, Caitlin was officially awarded third place with Ally KGO and she couldn’t be more pleased with the mare’s performance in her first CCI3*-L.

“You never know bringing them up to this level — this was her first really tough one,” Caitlin said. “She finished strong yesterday, but you never know on Sunday morning how much horse you’re going to have and how they’re going to show jump. She’s a very good show jumper typically, but she’s never jumped after a long format like this.”

Caitlin said that the 8-year-old Trakehner owned by Q-Brook Stables felt no worse for the wear after her fantastic run yesterday. Even though the track was a bit slippery, the cool weather helped to keep the horses fresh and consistent.

“She felt the same to me today, which is exciting for the future that she jumps the same on the third day. There’s a lot of decorations in there and she can be a spooky horse, but she was all business and really focused, Caitlin said. “I think she wanted it as bad as I did. I think we’re looking at an Advanced move up this spring. We’ll see

This has been the mare’s second full season at the Intermediate level, and Caitlin is considering a move up to Advanced next year.

Holly Payne Caravella and CharmKing LLC’s CharmKing finish their weekend in fourth place, since they were just three seconds further away from the cross country optimum time than Caitlin and Ally KGO.

Dr. Kevin Keane made a triumphant return to upper-level competition after being sidelined with an injury for some time. The veterinarian steadily climbed the leaderboard over the weekend with his own Sportsfield Candy, a 12-over Irish Sport Horse gelding, from an initial 11th place to ultimately finish fifth overall on his dressage score of 31.60.

Another combination to finish on their dressage score was Stephanie Cauffman and her own Chatsworth Third Revolution, an 8-year-old Warmblood gelding. They kept their initial score of 34.3 to move up 16 place over the course of the weekend and finish sixth in their first long format three-star.

Megan Sykes and her own Classic’s Mojah, a 10-year-old Oldenburg gelding, sat in 5th place heading into the final phase, but pulled a single rail which resulted in a drop to 7th place on a final score of 34.7.

8th place went to Jenny Caras and Trendy Fernhill, an 8-year-old Irish Sport Horse mare that she owns. They missed out on a double clear by just a single second and accrued 0.4 time penalties for a final score 35.1.

It looks like Maya Black has an exciting young horse on her hands in Laurie Cameron’s Miks Master C. Maya and the 7-year-old Swedish Warmblood gelding only added a 1.60 second in cross country time penalties to their dressage score to finish with 36.0 penalties points for 9th place.

Will Faudree rounds out the top ten with Mama’s Magic Way, an 8-year-old Hanoverian gelding owned by Jennifer Mosing and Sterling Silver Stables. They finished on their dressage score of 36.6, and moved up 21 places from 31st after dressage.

Of note, Will rode two horses in this division and finished both on their dressage scores. His other mount, yesterday’s pathfinder, FRH Ramona began the weekend in 51st but moved up a whopping 34 places to finish 17th. They tie Cornelia Dorr and Daytona Beach 8 for the “biggest mover” award — they also moved up 34 places, from 53rd to 19th.

We still have so much more from Fair Hill to bring you, including the four-star report and a massive photo gallery. Stay tuned!

#DuttaFHI: WebsiteFinal ScoresLive StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

All Accepted, One Top Contender Withdrawn at Fair Hill Final Horse Inspection

Waylon Roberts and Lancaster. Photo by Abby Powell.

Welcome to the final day of the 2019 Dutta Corp Fair Hill International Three-Day! An incredible double rainbow all the way across the sky heralded in the morning prior to the competition’s second horse inspection.

All horses who presented to the ground jury this morning in both divisions were accepted, but the top three in the CCI4*-L still underwent a minor rearrangement as Lauren Kieffer withdrew the third-placed D.A. Duras overnight electing not to present the 11-year-old KWPN gelding to the ground jury of Martin Plewa (GER), Bobby Stevenson (USA), Angela Tucker (GBR).

All other presented CCI4*-L passed the trot up with flying colors, including first-placed Waylon Roberts and Lancaster, second-placed Erin Sylvester and Paddy the Caddy, and Mia Farley with BGS Firecracker, who now move into third position after Lauren’s withdrawal.

Woods Baughman and C’est La Vie 135. Photo by Abby Powell.

The CCI3*-L ground jury of  Helen Brettell (GBR) and Valerie Vizcarrondo Pride (USA) sent a single pair to the holding box: 46th-placed Babette Lenna Gonyea and Marketscan, an 11-year-old Irish Sport Horse owned by the rider’s aunt, Babette Brandt. The pair was accepted upon representation, to audible cheers from their supporters.

Overnight leaders Woods Baughman and C’est La Vie 135 were easily accepted, as were second-placed Colleen Loach and Vermont, as well as both pairs tied for third: Caitlin Silliman with Ally KGO and Holly Payne Caravella with CharmKing (sadly not pictured — sorry, Holly!)

The USEF CCI4*-L and CCI3*-L Eventing National Champions will be crowned this afternoon in what promises to be an exciting finale. In the four-star, Waylon will not have a rail in hand over Erin heading and fewer than two rails separate him from fourth-placed Meghan O’Donoghue and Palm Crescent.

A single point separates the first two positions in the CCI3*-L, so Woods could have a single time penalty and still clinch the title. However, rails will significantly shuffle the placings in this division as a single rail separates the top seven.

Show jumping begins momentarily with the CCI3*-L at 10:30am, followed by the CCI4*-L at 1:00pm. You can watch both divisions on the USEF Network is live stream and of course, keep it locked here on EN for the exciting Fair Hill finale!

#DuttaFHI: WebsiteShow Jumping Order of GoScheduleCCI ScoringYEH ScoringLive StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Leaderboard Shuffle in Fair Hill CCI4*-L: Waylon Roberts Leads After Cross Country

There’s been a significant shuffle to the CCI4*-L leaderboard at the end of cross country day at the Dutta Corp Fair Hill International Three-Day. After much ado about flag penalties, a whole new top three emerged with Canada’s Waylon Roberts and Lancaster in the lead on their dressage score of 31.1.

Waylon Roberts and Lancaster. Photo by Abby Powell.

The Canadian rider and the 12-year-old Canadian Sport Horse gelding owned by Michelle and John Koppin have been chipping away at the Advanced level, taking it one phase at a time and trying, as one does, to put all the pieces together. They made their five-star debut this spring at the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event and then returned to the Kentucky Horse Park again for the American Eventing Championships this summer.

“Kentucky was a thrill,” Waylon said. “For me I am still feeling pretty green at that level, and it was very beneficial for him as an experience, but we definitely have a lot more to prove at that level.”

“Lancaster’s first Advanced run after Kentucky was at the AEC and I had some trouble at a couple of corners,” he recalled. “Derek [di Grazia, course designer] again set that AEC track to mimic what he set at Kentucky for the five-star, so it was eye-opening for me because I realized I had gotten away with a few things [at Kentucky] so I went home the last month or so and really tried to buckle down on the corners and getting him to follow me through the turns. Even though AEC didn’t go the way I wanted, it was probably the best thing that could have happened for me in preparation for this event.”

“At all the corner combinations he asked you to be patient and forward out on a line, which, for event riders, is really difficult because it is much easier to just go fast and straight.”

As one of the last 10 riders in the order of go today, Waylon was able to capitalize on his late draw in the order by seeing how other riders fared tackling the course’s difficult questions.

“I was fortunate enough to be late enough in the four-star so I was able to watch a lot and see how the course was riding and it definitely proved to be a tough track that Derek [di Grazia] set. The ground was fantastic, but that coffin was really tricky for a lot of horses, and I definitely got a lot of information from watching, so I am thankful for the late draw.”

Erin Sylvester and Paddy the Caddy. Photo by Abby Powell.

Since overall first-placed Waylon rides for Canada, that means Erin Sylvester is sitting in pole position to clinch the USEF CCI4*-L Eventing National Championship as the highest placed American rider. Erin moved up into second place overall with her and Frank McEntee’s 12-year old Thoroughbred gelding Paddy the Caddy, with whom she placed in the top 20 at Kentucky this spring.

“The course rode well, but definitely difficult in some spots,” said Erin. “Paddy jumped well the whole way around and I couldn’t be happier with his effort.”

Despite losing a shoe between fences 18 and 19, the pair jumped clear and crossed the finish flags just one second over optimum time to add 0.4 penalties to their dressage score, putting them on a 34.3 headed into tomorrow.

Lauren Kieffer and D.A. Duras. Photo by Abby Powell.

Lauren Kieffer jumped clear with time on D.A. Duras, who is owned in partnership with Jaqueline Mars and Debbie Adams. They moved up from 13th after dressage to now sit in third on a score of 36.6.

Though no one wants to move up in the standings due to the misfortune of others, as Lauren pointed out, she was particularly pleased with today’s result for the 11-year-old KWPN gelding who has been plagued by a bit of bad luck in the past.

“The horse was great today, he made it feel easy,” she said. “We’ve kind of been cursed by quite a bit of bad luck over the years … but he’s a really nice horse all around.”

Lauren also praises the course as a true test worthy of championship competition and comparable in difficulty to many found overseas.

“The course was great. The nice thing is that Derek doesn’t soften the course for any reason,” said Lauren. “I’ve been fortunate enough to do a lot of four-stars around the world and I put Fair Hill in the top three in its difficulty.”

Meghan O’Donoghue and Palm Crescent. Photo by Abby Powell.

A couple of big-movers shot up in the standings after they delivered clear and fast rounds across the country. Mia Farley and BGS Firecracker, previously in 22nd after dressage, are now in 4th place after a double clear round and are headed into Sunday on a score of 38.3. Meghan O’Donoghue and Palm Crescent also clocked in a double clear to move up from 23rd to 5th with a score of 38.6, as did Jenny Caras and Fernhill Fortitude who might be the biggest movers of the day landing in 6th from 26th who hang on to their dressage score of 40.0.  Sydney Elliot and QC Diamantaire added just a couple time penalties to set in 7th on a score of 40.2.

Jenny Caras and Fernhill Fortitude. Photo by Abby Powell.

Overnight leaders Mara DePuy and Congo Brazaville C were looking on point through the majority of the course, but ran into a spot of trouble at the Farm House Corners, Fence 21AB, where a large jump into the combination led to a unclear path to the alternate fence, costing them 20 penalties.

Mara then came to additional grief when Congo drifted to the right coming over a wooden duck which served as the B element of Fence 24, the Springhouse Water, knocking Mara’s leg against the duck’s head  and unseating her.

Phillip Dutton, who sat in second place after dressage with Z, had ridden an otherwise double clear round but was assessed 15 penalties for taking out the flag at the B element of the Farm House Corners. Despite those penalties, Z remains in the top 10 overnight, now on a score of 44.4. His stablemate, Fernhill Singapore, sits in ahead of him in 8th place on a score of 42.8. Three other horse and rider pairs were also penalized for knocking the flag at the same complex: Doug Payne and Vandiver, Will Coleman and Dondante, and Mike Pendleton and Steady Eddie. All of those pairs would have otherwise slotted into the top ten.

Rounding out the top 10 is Allison Springer and Business Ben, who added only time to their dressage score, though enough to drop them from 5th to 10th on 46.9.

Phillip Dutton and Fernhill Singapore. Photo by Abby Powell.

The Farm House Corners were the second most troublesome spot on course, bested only by the coffin complex at Fence 13, The Walls, where 5 run-outs  and two rider falls all occurred at the C brush element. One of the pairs sadly falling victim to this spot on course was Colleen Rutledge and Covert Rights as they were amongst the pairs who picked up 20 penalties here.

In total, there were seven rider falls in the division and no horse falls. No injuries — neither horse nor human — have been reported.

Waylon will not have a rail in hand over Erin heading into show jumping tomorrow, and fewer than two rails separate the top five spots. They’ll have to pass the second horse inspection first, however, which takes place at 8 a.m. It’s shaping up to be an exciting finish here at Fair Hill, so stay tuned for our continued coverage.

#DuttaFHI: WebsiteSunday Horse Inspection Order of GoScheduleCCI ScoringYEH ScoringLive StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Baughman Blazes into Fair Hill International CCI3*-L Lead

Woods Baughman and C’est La Vie. Photo by Abby Powell.

“Don’t get weird.”

That was coach Sharon White’s last piece of advice to 23-year-old Woods Baughman before he left the start box with C’est La Vie 135 in the CCI3*-L at the Dutta Corp Fair Hill International Three-Day this morning. Lying in second place overnight after yesterday’s dressage, they took over the top spot with their double clear round and will stay on their dressage score of 27.6 after first phase leaders Alexa Gartenberg and Louis M added 5.60 time penalties to their otherwise clear round.

Woods found that Derek di Grazia’s course suited Baughman family-owned 11-year-old Hanoverian gelding rather nicely. This was Woods’ first clear round at Fair Hill, having previously only made it as far as fence 7 in past years.

“I was pretty much ready to go home then,” he smiled. “It made me so happy.”

“Contendro”, as he’s known around the barn, it’s a newer ride for Woods. He first met the gelding while working in Germany throughout 2018 for Dirk Schrade.

“He can be very stubborn but once he switches on he’s full business,” said Woods. “I don’t like to jump chevrons out of water so I was a little worried about that, but he’s so honest that if you just keep him straight he jumps anything you put in front of him. As long as you don’t try to fight him back and let him go he’ll tear around.”

Colleen Loach and Vermont. Photo by Abby Powell.

Another double clear round saw Canada’s Colleen Loach and Vermont maintain their position one point behind Woods on their dressage score of 28.6. After their dressage test yesterday, Colleen emphasized that building a partnership with the young Hanoverian gelding has been a focus of her’s ever since taking over the ride from owner Peter Barry.

“He felt great. He really galloped well,” said Colleen. “He was really listening to whatever I asked him.”

This weekend’s event is “Monty’s” second CCI3*-L and his first clear — a run out that Colleen attributes to a pilot error kept them out of a top finish at Bromont this spring. Given that the horse is only 7-years-old, Colleen plans keep the gelding at the Intermediate level next year and continue to gain mileage with him.

“He’s got a huge stride, but he’s very adjustable and rideable. This was a good course for him,”she said. “As usual Derek put out a great course and it invited a lot of bold, forward riding. But there were also places where you had to be smart.” 

Caitlin Silliman and Ally KGO. Photo by Abby Powell.

Third place is occupied by both Caitlin Silliman with Ally KGO and Holly Payne Caravella with CharmKing, both on their dressage scores of 29.8.

Caitlin and the Trakehner mare’s great round — which was one second under the optimum time of 8 minutes 46 seconds — was made even sweeter in that the mare’s owners, the McCue family, were out on course fence judging at 7ab.

“I gave them a little wave as I went by,’ Caitlin said. “They’ve been huge supporters of me since I went out on my own.”

The McCue’s purchased Ally KGO out of an auction in Wisconsin as a three-year-old. Now 8 years old, Caitlin says the mare has really matured and has started to particularly enjoy the sport. S

“It’s been fun to produce her alongside [the McCues] and see how far she can go. I’ve always thought she was special. She’s really talented,” said Caitlin. “She’s a natural athlete, but she’s a mare, so she can be tough.”

Holly Payne Caravella and CharmKing. Photo by Abby Powell.

For Holly, time was key for a couple of reasons during her round aboard the 8-year-old Holsteiner gelding owned by CharmKing LLC. In the event of a tie at the end of the weekend, the higher placement will be awarded to the combination who came closest to the optimum time across the country.

“Normally, you try to go as fast as you can, but I knew I was up on my minutes and I looked at my watch as I came around the corner toward the second to last fence and I was trying to kill a bit of time, which you don’t normally do,” said Holly. “So I hung out on the turn, I gave a little half halt, then I looked at my watch and panicked. It’s like one of those nerve wracking things where you’re like, ‘I want to take my time, but not too much time.’”

I was super happy with him today because he hasn’t always been the fastest horse, so we’ve been working on that,” she said. 

#DuttaFHI: WebsiteScheduleLive ScoresLive StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Stay tuned for more from today’s FHI action — we’ll be brining you a CCI4*-L report later along with a photo gallery!

Saturday Links from Nupafeed USA

There is so much happening at Fair Hill International this weekend, it’s a little bit nuts. The CCI divisions are big in their own right (and they’re keeping this reporter busy all on their own), but the YEH Championship divisions are quite large as well and have been running all day long Thursday and Friday. In addition to your loyal readership here, make sure you check our USEA’s stellar coverage of the YEH Championships!

National Holiday: National Kentucky Day

Major Weekend Events:

Fair Hill International: WebsiteScheduleCCI Cross Country Ride TimesCCI ScoringYEH ScoringLive StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Le Lion d’Angers: WebsiteEntries and Ride Times (CCI2*-L)Entries and Ride Times (CCI3*-L)EN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

U.S. Weekend Action:

Tryon Riding & Hunt Club H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Hagyard Midsouth CCI, 3DE, & H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Fresno County H.T. [Website]  [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Pine Hill Fall H.T. [Website]  [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Saturday Links:

2019 YEH East Coast Champions Collect Their Crowns

9 young event horse world champions who’ve made a big impact

5 Things A Physiotherapist Wants You To Know About Horse And Rider Health

Rescue pony scoops first British Eventing win by huge margin

The Science of Rehoming Horses

Saturday Video: Mara DePuy and Congo Brazaville C’s dressage test, which earned a 28.6 for the CCI4*-L.

Leading Ride: Mara DePuy and Congo Brazzaville C at Fair Hill International

“We’ve worked really hard this year, I’m just happy it’s paying off. I could not be happier with how he dealt with everything. He was totally with me the entire time.”Mara DePuy Eventing leads The Dutta Corporation/USEF CCI4* – L Eventing National Championship at Fair Hill International after scoring a 28.6 in dressage. #USAEventing #DuttaFHI

Posted by USA Eventing on Friday, October 18, 2019

Fair Hill Dressage: DePuy is On Top in the CCI4*L, Gartenberg Gets the CCI3*-L Lead

It’s Friday evening at the 2019 Dutta Corp Fair Hill International Three-Day and the leaderboard of both the CCI4*-L and CCI3*-L divisions have been shuffled since competition began yesterday.

Yesterday’s CCI4*-L leaders, Will Coleman and Dondante, now sit in 7th place at the conclusion of dressage. Mara DePuy and her own and David and Mary Regamey’s Congo Brazaville C have taken over the top spot, after being the first ones of the day to break into the 20s. They’ll head into cross country sitting on 28.6 penalty points.

Mara DePuy and Congo Brazzaville C. Photo by Abby Powell.

After “not such a good test” at the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event this spring, after which Mara chose to withdraw from the competition (“He was a little distracted and we did a few extra movements,” Mara recalled), she took the 12-year-old KWPN gelding back to basics this summer and sought help from dressage trainer James Burtwell.

“After Kentucky I just needed a restart. Congo totally caught me out — I thought I had him and I didn’t. I needed to go and solidify some of the basics, which sounds silly, but it’s so important,” she said. “James didn’t know me from anywhere and just was straightforward and strong. James has helped a ton and the test today I definitely owe to him.”

Sitting atop the leaderboard is extra special for Mara, who represented the United State at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and the 2007 Pan American Games in Rio De Janiero, Brazil, as it’s marking a return to the top level of the sport — something she wouldn’t have pictured happening six years ago before she found Congo.

“I thought I was ready to give up at the top level and Congo is a pretty special horse and fun to ride so we’re going to keep going,” she said. “He’s kind of like my best friend. He’s like a Labrador in the barn. I wake up every morning wanting to ride him and I enjoy riding him no matter what we’re doing. We’ve worked really hard this year and I’m just happy that it’s paying off.”

Phillip Dutton and Z. Photo by Abby Powell.

Phillip Dutton and the Z Partnership’s Z, his mount at last year’s World Equestrian Games, were the only other pair  to score sub-30 in the CCI4*-L which puts them in second place. Phillip will be looking to pilot the uber-talented 11-year-old Zangersheide gelding to a strong finish this season.

“I was really pleased. I thought he did some really good work,” Phillip said. “He kept the lid on things and didn’t get too wound up, but was still powerful. It might be one of his best tests.”

Colleen Rutledge and Covert Rights. Photo by Abby Powell.

Rounding out the top three in the CCI4*-L is Colleen Rutledge and her homebred Covert Rights. Despite their good placement on the leaderboard, Colleen admitted that they’re capable of more.

“I had a couple of bobbles in a couple of places,” she said. “But it’s always a work in progress and there’s always something I can fix and there’s always something that can be done … but for the most part he showed up to work and he did what he did.”

Colleen and CR have already found much success this season, either winning or placing second in their last four CCI4*-S. With CR making a comeback from injury, success with him is particularly sweet.

“Horses are horses. They hurt themselves pretty consistently and there are always ups and downs. I’m just so glad that he’s come back as well as he has. I have fun on him every day.”

Alexa Gartenberg and Louis M. Photo by Abby Powell.

A college sophomore sits atop the leaderboard in the CCI3*-L. Alexa Gartenberg splits her time between studying business at the nearby University of Delaware and riding her own Louis M. Lovingly known as a “first phase freak” here at EN, Louis M was acquired about a year ago by the Gartenbergs from Cornelia Dorr, who originally imported him from Germany’s Pia Münker. The 14-year-old Rheinlander gelding is the ultimate teacher.

“This past year has been about just getting me more experienced at the three-star short level,” Alexa said. “This is my fist three-star long so I’m really happy to have him showing me. He was perfect today — he comes out every day in a suit and tie ready to work. He’s really taught me the proper way of riding dressage.”

Alexa commutes between school and Matt and Cecily Brown’s East West Training Stables, with whom she’s been riding for the past three years.

“They’re like my second parents, I love them so much,” she said of the couple. “They’ve taught me how to be a true horsewoman.”

Woods Baughman and C’est La Vie. Photo by Abby Powell.

Woods Baughman slotted into second place in the CCI3*-L with the Baughman family’s C’est La Vie 135, scoring a 27.6.

Woods took a sabbatical from his usual position working for Sharon White to train with Dirk Schrade in Germany throughout 2018. While there, he was introduced to C’est La Vie 135, an 11-year-old Hanoverian gelding, who was in training with Dirk and ended up purchasing and importing the gelding at the end of the year.

Woods has spent 2019 getting to know him, and their first outing together in the states was at the Carolina International CCI2*-S this spring.

“He’s just so much fun,” Woods smiled. “You can just sit there and ask and he gives you what he’s got and you just enjoy it.”

Colleen Loach and Vermont. Photo by Abby Powell.

Colleen Loach and Vermont, who she rides for Peter Barry, complete the top three in the CCI3*-L. The towering chestnut may be the tallest horse in the competition this weekend, as he sticks over 18-hands.

“It’s been a little bit different getting used to riding him,” Colleen said of the 7-year-old Hanoverian gelding. “He can be a very emotional, so I was happy with the wind he held himself together today. He felt a little bit tense but he kept his composure and allowed me to ride him so I was happy with the result considering the weather.”

Forging a partnership with the horse has been key to unlocking the talented youngster’s potential. “He trusts me now, which is a big deal for him because he’s a little bit insecure at time so when he trusts a rider he’s pretty impressive.”

Riders will test their mettle across Derek di Grazia’s cross country courses tomorrow, beginning with the the CCI3*-L division at 9:00am. The CCI4*-L division begins at 12:45pm. Don’t miss our four-star course preview here. Ride times for both divisions can be viewed here and will be live streamed on USEF Network.

#DuttaFHI: WebsiteCross Country Ride TimesScheduleCCI ScoringLive StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Four-Star Finale: Fair Hill International CCI4*-L Cross Country Course Preview

16B the Persimmon Turn.

10/10 riders surveyed agree: Derek Di Grazia‘s championship cross country courses are no joke … as usual. After two decades of designing the course here at the Dutta Corp Fair Hill International Three-Day, this year is his last as Fair Hill bids adieu to the long-standing four-star in order to make way for the new five-star next fall (which will be designed by Ian Stark). But don’t worry, he’s not out of a job — Derek will stay busy designing for the Kentucky Three-Day event and the Tokyo Olympics next year, to name a few.

The CCI4*-L track runs the the same direction as last year, but many of the combinations have been shuffled in order to give the course a different feel. Riders will have plenty of work to do right out of the start box as the first combination and first water complex comes early on course with Fence 5AB, the Frog Pond.

4* Fence 7a: Shady Grove. Photo by Holly Covey.

The second combination comes up quickly at Fence 7, where riders will need to be able to bring their horses back after an uphill gallop to Fence 6, the Snake, so that they can successfully navigate the downhill-sloping A-B-C elements of the Shady Grove.

Riders should be able to find a nice gallop to Fence 8, the Potting Shed, before making a decision about which option to take at Fence 9AB, the Stone Cottages. Riders who opt for the direct route will need to have their lines planned well in advance in order to have a good shot at the B element, a big right-handed open corner.

There are good gallop stretches between fences 9, 10, 11AB — the Chesapeake Water — and 12. The combination at Fence 13 may be the biggest change in course design from previous years. The A-B-C-D combination will require a positive ride into the coffin complex so that horses can maintain their power over the ditch and up the slop to the C element brush, before exiting the complex via the D element, a left-handed brush corner.

4* Fence 13abc: The Walls. Photo by Holly Covey.

Fences 14 and 15 are “let up” fences, if you’re the kind of rider who consider massive houses and oxers to be breathers. Competitors will loop back over Fence 16AB, the Persimmon Turn, before heading down over Fence 17 to the William duPont, Jr. Main Arena where they will tackle Fence 18AB, The Dutta Double.

Horses will then gallop past the vendor area and Kids’ Corner and may potentially be able to make up some time between fences 19 and 22. While competitors are near the end of the course at this point, they’re far from home-free as there is plenty left to do with the last few fences coming up quickly and less than a minute and half left on their watches if they want to make time.

4* Fence 24abc: Springhouse Water. Photo by Holly Covey.

Fences 23 and 24 are both A-B combinations that require riders to keep their potentially tired horses organized and accurate if they want to cross the finish flags fault-free after jumping the fences 25 and 26, the last obstacles on course. Special thanks to Holly Covey for the fantastic course photos!

Cross country begins tomorrow morning with the CCI3*-L division first our on course at 9:00am. You can view the CCI3*-L course here. The CCI4*-L will head out course after lunch. Click here for ride times for both divisions. Both divisions will be live streamed thanks to US Equestrian!

#DuttaFHI: WebsiteCross Country Ride TimesScheduleCCI ScoringLive StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram


This Week in Horse Health News Presented by MediVet Equine

Current events — they’re important, y’all. But this is a horse website, so we’re going to talk about horse things and as luck would have it we have some current events in horse health news to share with you this week. Here’s the latest:

US Equestrian is reassessing the use of Medroxyprogesterone (MPA), commonly known as Depo-Provera, in competition horses. MPA is the compounded form of Depo-Provera, a human birth control drug, which is reformulated for use in horses to keep mares from going into heat. MPA is not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use in animals. The Chronicle of the Horse previously reported a number of equine fatalities linked to use of the drug. [US Equestrian]

The USEA provided an update on research being sponsored by the Equine Medical Research Fund. One dollar from every event you enter goes into this fund, and a grand total of $39,581 was collected in 2018. In August the USEA Board of Governors voted to use that money to support these studies and projects:

  • Development of a non-invasive platform to serve as a diagnostic test for gastrointestinal inflammation prior to severe disease (such as colic and colitis) and to reveal how bacteria in the gut influence horse health.
  • Investigation of a new laboratory test to improve diagnosis of equine metabolic syndrome, a metabolic and hormonal disorder in horses.
  • Manipulation of the expression of immune markers on stem cells to develop safer and more effective therapies for horses with musculoskeletal injuries.
  • Determine the effects of front shoe surface modifications in the sport horse on the duration of hoof breakover.

Give yourselves a pat on the back for contributing to SCIENCE! [USEA]

As horse owners and competitors, we want to give our equine athletes every opportunity to feel and perform their best. Keeping up to date with the latest news in horse health and medicine is an important part of that, and it’s why Medivet Equine is bringing you the latest in horse health news each week.

Following the medical model of “do no harm”, MediVet Equine develops scientifically based therapeutics enabling the horse to call on its own healing ability, thus achieving its full performance potential. MediVet Equine provides effective, all natural, drug free products and lab services designed to optimize the overall health of performance horses. They specialize in regenerative treatments that help the body heal itself to get stronger naturally. Boyd Martin has several of his top competitive mounts on MediVet ACS, and has had terrific results!

Blustery Beginnings at Fair Hill: Will Coleman Leads CCI4*-L, Tight Race in CCI3*-L after Dressage Day One

Will Coleman and DonDante. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Well, at least it’s not raining. It was, however, an exceptionally windy day here at the Dutta Corp Fair Hill International Three-Day in Elkton, Maryland. Though the conditions made delivering a relaxed dressage test a bit trickier than usual, we still saw some excellent fancy prancing in the CCI division on day one of dressage.

Will Coleman and Dondante are leading the CCI4*-L division, after approximately a third of the division performed their dressage tests this afternoon. Dondante, a 9-year-old Irish Sport Horse who was sourced through Cooley Farm as a four-year-old, is Will’s sole entry this weekend. Despite the blustery conditions, the gelding showed up to work and clocked a personal best score of 33.8 at the Advanced/ four-star level.

“The conditions were kind of challenging, actually, this afternoon,” said Will. “He’s a pretty spooky guy, so I was very proud of him. He just keeps getting better. He’s definitely not going to get mistaken for a dressage horse, but he tried hard. We’ve been working very hard, so I’m pleased with the improvement. Hopefully he can finish on that.”

Will Coleman and DonDante. Photo by Abby Powell.

Bringing along Dondante, who goes by “Al” around the barn, has been a rewarding endeavor for Will, who has enjoyed support from owners in partnership, Team Rebecca and the Four-Star Eventing Group.

“He hasn’t had amazing results anywhere but his dressage keeps getting a little bit better every year and he’s always been pretty good jumper and a good cross country horse. If anything I’d say he tries too hard — we had a mistake out of the first halt, but that was just him wanting to get into the test so bad that he just loses his footwork and canters a step.”

“But that’s the sort of horse he is, he just wants to give you everything, so sometimes that tension can bubble over just little bit so my job is really to try to keep him relaxed and confident and I think I’m doing better job of that. As he matures he just keeps getting better and better. He hasn’t blown anyone away yet … but if he keeps going like this maybe one day he’s going to do great things.

Lauren Kieffer and D.A. Duras. Photo by Abby Powell.

Lauren Kieffer sits in second on a score of 35.4 with D.A. Duras, an 11-year-old KWPN gelding owned by Jaqueline Mars and Debbie Adams. Rounding out the top three in the four-star is Allie Knowles and Katherine O’Brien’s 11-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding, Moreswood.

Holly Payne Caravella and Charmking. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

The top three horses in the CCI3*-L all delivered sub-30 dressage scores and there is a currently a tie for first on a score of 29.8: Holly Payne Caravella and Charmking share the top spot with Caitlin Silliman and Ally KGO.

“He’s an awesome horse,” Holly said of the 8-year-old Holsteiner gelding owned by Carmking LLC. “I was actually really concerned though — he is a little noise sensitive and with all the wind today and the flags and everything … I had taken him out for a gallop to try to just take the edge off and he was actually a little too quiet in the ring.  So I did a little too much, but I would rather have that any day than have him have been explosive.”

Caitlin Silliman and Ally KGO. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Despite the conditions, Cailtin was able to glean some confidence from having ridden Morgan McCue’s Ally KGO, an 8-year-old Trakehner mare, in this atmosphere before in for the 4- and 5-year-old YEH Championship in years past.

“It gives you a bit of confidence going in the same ring, because you’ve been in there and she’s been here for the big three-day in the spring,” she said. “But she is quite a hot horse and it’s tough conditions today on a spooky sharp one with the wind and the flags whipping and there’s quite a bit of atmosphere with the cross-country jumps and the people sitting on the hill.”

“She’s a beautiful moving horse, but you never quite know what you’re going to get because she moves so big she’s hard to keep up with sometimes and can just drag me around the ring and make some mistakes but she was a really good girl and very focused and was really rideable through the whole test so I was really happy.”

Jenny Caras and Trendy Fernhill. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Sitting only a tenth of a point behind the three-star leaders on a 29.9 is Jenny Caras and her own Trendy Fernhill, and 8-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding.

That’s a wrap on day one at Fair Hill! Dressage continues tomorrow with the rest of both CCI divisions heading down the centerline at 8:00am sharp.

#DuttaFHI: WebsiteDrawn OrderScheduleCCI Dressage Ride TimesYEH Ride TimesCCI ScoringLive StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Fair Hill First Horse Inspection: 109 Pairs Accepted

Same, Master Frisky, same. Photo by Abby Powell.

For all of the rain that the Elkton, Maryland area hasn’t had over the past few weeks, nature seems to be making up for it today, just in time for the first horse inspection at the Dutta Corp Fair Hill International Three-Day Event. Though it soaked through many an article of clothing, it didn’t put a damper on the spirits of the competitors or the members of the ground juries. Spoiler alert: all 109 pairs were accepted.

Horses in the CCI3*-L, 62 in total, presented first to the ground jury of Helen Brettell (GBR) and Valerie Vizcarrondo Pride (USA). Two horses were sent to the holding box, but were accepted upon representation: Colleen Rutledge’s C Me Fly and Heather Jane Morris’ Jos UFO De Quidam. Jennifer Salinger’s Lasse 73 was asked to jog twice, but were accepted after their second pass down the lane.

Fylicia Barr and Galloway Sunrise. Photo by Abby Powell.

The skies opened up in time for the CCI4*-L division to trot up for the ground jury Martin Plewa (GER), Bobby Stevenson (USA), Angela Tucker (GBR). Sydney Solomon and Early Review were the only pair held out of 47 in this division, but ultimately passed and were accepted.

Dressage for the the CCI divisions kicks off with the CCI3*-L tomorrow morning at 9:12am and the CCI4*-L takes over the sandbox in the afternoon beginning at 1:36pm. Sharon White will be performing the test rides for both divisions.

Competition for the YEH East Coast Championships also begins tomorrow, with the first pair in the 5 year old class, Andrew Palmer and Ladino, slated to begin their dressage at 7:44am.

Keep it locked on EN for much more to come from FHI!

#DuttaFHI: WebsiteDrawn OrderSchedule, CCI Dressage Ride TimesYEH Ride TimesCCI ScoringLive StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Wednesday Video from Kentucky Performance Products: Meanwhile in Poland

While the CCI4*-L and Nations Cup at Military Boekelo in The Netherlands captured the attention of those interested in a first look at the new Olympic format, many other top European-based riders headed to Poland for the Strzegom October Festival, which hosted a CCI1*, CCI2*-S, and CCI3* and 4* long and shorts over Oct. 10-13, 2019.

Australia’s Andrew Hoy rode Paula & David EvansVassily de Lassos to a second place finish in the CCI4*-L, clocking in the fastest cross country round of the day and only one of two rounds clear and inside the time; the other belonging to division winners Harry Meade and Superstition. Vassily de Lassos, a 10-year-old Anglo-Arab gelding (Jaguar Mail x Illusion Perdue, by Jalienny), was Andrew’s mount for the 2018 World Equestrian Games in Tryon. With numerous top results and speedy rounds already at such a young age, he’s surely one to watch going into an Olympic year.

Grab mane and enjoy their speedy Strzegom round!

[Strzegom Final Results]

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Weekly OTTB Wishlist from Cosequin: Fall Foliage Forever

Fall is here and peak autumn colors are dazzling much of the northern United States and beginning to work their way south. It’s easy to love the autumn colors of the changing leaves, but it’s a bit of drag that it also means that winter is right around the corner, isn’t it? Wouldn’t it be nice to preserve that fall color year round?

Bright orange chestnuts are a bit reminiscent of that blazing fall foliage color, don’t you think? This week we’re spotlighting three such geldings that remind us of a crisp autumn day and they’re all available for adoption through wonderful Thoroughbred rehoming organizations. Take one home and add a little color to your life!

Abdaar. Photo via Retired Racehoorse Project.

Abdaar (HARD SPUN – MARRAASI, BY RAHY): 2012 16.0-hand Kentucky-bred gelding

Give Abdaar a round of applause — he made it to the 2019 Thoroughbred Makeover where he gained a ton of experience! Abdaar has an enviable uphill build and in addition to his great conformation, he’s the full package with a great attitude as well. The good folks at MidAtlantic Horse Rescue say they were “instantly impressed with his confident, unflappable attitude and natural balance” and because of that attitude he has been an easy horse to restart. He is brave over fences and trail obstacles and his wonderful personality makes him a candidate for both a more novice rider or someone with great ambitions.

Located in Warwick, Maryland.

View Abdaar on MidAtlantic Equine Rescue.

Roaring Launch. Photo via CANTER PA.

Roaring Launch (ROARING FEVER – EMILY HA HA, BY BRIGHT LAUNCH): 2012 16.0-hand New York-bred gelding

Redheaded hunk alert! Roaring Launch is the flashy chestnut that you dream about. He is lightly raced through no fault of his own, actually only making his first start earlier this year as a 7-year-old. With Presque Isle Downs winding down their season, he’s being offered up for sale since he hasn’t made any waves as a racehorse. His lovely movement and excellent conformation should lend him particularly suited to try out a career in eventing.

Located in Erie, Pennsylvania.

View Roaring Launch on CANTER PA.

War At Sunrise. Photo via CANTER PA.

War At Sunrise (PURE PRIZE – AMAUNET, BY GONE WEST): 2013 16.0-hand Maryland-bred gelding

War At Sunrise’s owners are looking for their next horse to run on a higher ticket so after 59 starts and almost $100,000 in earning, War At Sunrise is moving on and looking for a new job. This warhorse is said to be retiring sound and is being offered for a steal of a price. With a powerful build and what looks to be a calm, cool, and collected demeanor War At Sunrise looks like he could make someone a super classy new partner.

Located in Grantville, Pennsylvania.

View War At Sunrise on CANTER PA.

Monday Video: Bruce Davidson Rocks Radnor Novice

Yes, that’s THE Bruce Davidson Sr.! Eventing never ceases to amaze us — what other sport out there can you stumble upon such a decorated athlete who shaped the sport out there popping around with everyone else?

The man, the myth, the legend himself was out eventing at the Radnor Hunt Horse Trials in Malvern, Pennsylvania, this weekend, showing the ropes to 6-year-old homebred Chesterland’s Jif (Keltic Lion x Jam) in the Open Novice division. They added just one stadium rail to their dressage score for a 5th place finish.

Thanks to C Square Farm for sharing this video!

Radnor Hunt H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Monday News & Notes from Fleeceworks

Thibault Fornier and Siniani de Lathus. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

We are incredibly saddened to report that French rider Thibault Fournier is currently hospitalized after suffering a serious fall at an event in Pompadour, France. He is currently in a coma, but reported to be stable. 24-year-old Thibault memorably won Pau CCI5*-L last year in his first attempt at the level. We’re sending our very best wishes for recovery to Thibault.

National Holiday: Columbus Day

Major Events:

FEI Nations Cup at Military Boekelo: WebsiteEntriesRide TimesLive StreamLive ScoresEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

U.S. Weekend Results:

Maryland at Loch Moy H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Hitching Post Farm H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Radnor Hunt H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Paradise Farm H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Ocala Fall H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Fleur de Leap H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Las Cruces H.T. [Website] [Final Scores]

Monday News & Notes:

Some good news: Kevin Babington has been transferred to a rehabilitation facility. The Irish show jumper suffered a life-changing fall on August 30th at the Hampton Classic. Kevin still have a very long road to recovery ahead, but his transfer our of the hospital is a good sign. The extent of paralysis is still not known, but Kevin is now able to eat and drink on his own and his voice is getting stronger. [Update on Kevin Babington and Fundraising Options]

There are many rules that dictate the cross-country obstacles, from the height of the roof above a fence to the types of flags that must be used on certain types of jumps. It is important to understand these rules so that, as a competitor, you can be aware of what is and is not permitted on the cross-country course. [Rule Refresher: Cross-Country Obstacles]

Back pain is the worst. And it’s fairly common among riders. Back pain can stem from a number of things, including but not limited to poor posture, muscle weaknesses and misuse, saddle type, or trauma related to falls. Here are a few exercises to help you bullet-proof your back. [How to Maintain a Strong Back and Prevent Soreness]

Monday Featured Video:

Babies on Board: Entries for Le Lion Go Live

Liz Halliday-Sharp and Cooley Moonshine at Le Lion d’Angers 2018. Photo by EquusPix.

The FEI World Breeding Eventing Championships, otherwise known as Mondial du Lion, will take place next week from Oct. 17-20 at at Le Lion d’Angers. It’s a highlight of the global fall eventing calendar as future eventing superstars take centerstage.

As usual, the 6-year-olds will contest a CCIYH2*-L and 7-year-olds will contest the CCIYH3*-L. 22 different countries will be represented across the competition, ranging from eventing powerhouses such as France, Great Britain, and Ireland – who each have 15 horses competing – to ones we don’t see as often like Lithuania and Estonia. 19 countries and 40 pairs are entered in the two-star division for 6-year-olds, while 15 countries and 61 pairs will run the three-star for 7-year-olds.

One particularly notable name amongst the CCIYH2*-L entries is Piggy French, who’s having the most successful season on record. A win in the 6-year-old class with Cooley Lancer (Coeur De Nobless M X Tante Catoche Du Houssoit, by Ogano Sitte) would continue to grow her record of most international wins in a season.

The pair’s most recent outing came last weekend in the 6-year old division the British Eventing Young Horse National Championships at the Osberton International Horse Trials where they finished in second place out of 78 starters on their dressage score of 27.9. The Swiss-bred gelding hasn’t finished lower than 4th in any of his three previous 2*-S and has two Intermediate runs under his belt as well. Le Lion will be his first long-format event.

Last year’s 6-year-old champion, Cristal Fontaine (Chef Rouge x Nous Avons Gagne, by Griot de Mara) returns with rider Kitty King to try for back-to-back wins now as a 7-year-old. Though the Selle Français gelding finished 7th in the CCIYH-3*S at Osberton last weekend, he previously had not finished outside of the top three in his five internationals since Le Lion last year.

The competition will, of course, be fierce — particularly with several other top-placing 7-year-olds from the British Eventing Young Horse National Championships looking to steal the World Championship title and g us plenty of pairs to keep our eye on. William Fox-Pitt and Grafennacht (Grafenstolz X Nachtigall, by Narew), Italy’s Giovanni Ugolotti and Swirly Temptress (For Ladies Only X Betty Barclay, by Brentano 11), Willa Newton and Cock A Doodle Doo (Clarimo X unknown), Heidi Coy and Russal Z (Russell II X Violet, by Darco) all finished in the top ten at Osberton as well.

Another horse returning to Le Lion as a 7-year old is Cooley Moonshine (Cobra X Kilpatrick Duchess, by Kings Master) with sole North American representative this year, Liz Halliday-Sharp. Liz and Cooley Moonshine very nearly won the 6-year old championship last year, but the Irish Sport Horse gelding knocked a single rail in the final phase to drop them to third. Can they come out on top this year?

Cooley Moonshine will have some competition even from his own stable, however, as Liz will ride Flash Cooley (CSF Mr Kroon X Castlefield Ruby, by OBOS Quality) in the three-star for 7-year-olds as well.

Other big name riders including Oliver TownendIngrid Klimke, and Tim Price will be ones to watch aboard their 7-year-olds as well.

Click here to view entries for the 6-year-old World Championships.

Click here to view entries for the 7-year-old World Championships.

[Le Lion d’Angers Website]