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Leslie Law & Lady Chatterley Lead Ocala International CCI3*-L Dressage

The weekend is young at Ocala International Festival of Eventing, but some dressage leaders have already emerged. Here is a quick rundown of the FEI divisions. You’ll spot some Kentucky prep in the Advanced and Advanced Combined Test divisions, too.

Leslie Law and Lady Chatterley. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Leslie Law and Lady Chatterley scored a 28.1 to lead the Ocala International Festival CCI3*-L today, with Sara Kozumplik Murphy and Devil Munchkin (29.4) and Michael Nolan and SRS Picasso (31.3) rounding out the top three.

Sara Kozumplik Murphy and Devil Munchkin. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Lady Chatterley, a 10-year-old Holsteiner mare (Connor 48 x Jucy, by Mytens XX) owned by Lesley Grant-Law, Jackie Brown and Steve Brown, won the CCI3*-S at Stable View last month. Now they’re in the top spot headed into Ocala’s jumping phases.

Caroline Martin leads the CCI2*-L with Redfield Champion, a 7-year-old Hanoverian (Diarado x Calika, by Contendro I) on 25.1. They are followed by second-placed Andrew McConnon and D’Luxe Steel (27.7) and 3rd placed Cole Horn and MBF Cooley Permission To Land (28.5).

Clayton Fredericks leads the CCI1*-L with I’m Du Vinia MB (27.5), followed by 2nd placed Alexander O’Neal with Redtail Achiever (28.2).

Ocala International Festival of Eventing: [Website] [Entries] [Ride Times] [Live Scores] [Volunteer]

CCI3*-L Top 10 After Dressage: 

CCI2*-L Top 10 After Dressage: 

CCI1*-L Top 10 After Dressage: 

Advanced Combined Test Final:

Advanced HT Final Top 8: 

My Five Fave Friday Deals from the Virtual Vendor Village

No secret that vendor shopping is one of my favorite eventing pastimes, and we’re so very happy here at EN to connect our favorite companies with other like-minded shoppers! Each day we’re bringing you new deals via EN’s second annual Virtual Vendor Village (check out Friday’s deals here), then sharing our top picks of the day. Here are five that caught my fancy today!

Tapestry Equine Products: If your horse prefers a spur that feels more like a “gentle nudge” than a “POKE!!!!,” Spursuaders could be a welcome option.Linda Hauck, owner of Tapestry Equine Products, designed them with sensitive horses in mind: “The reason I developed this spur was in large part my experience riding sensitive horses, particularly Thoroughbreds. How they overreacted to a traditional spur, how some would get tense right away when they knew you were wearing a spur or watching a horse get inadvertently ‘spurred.’ That got me thinking that there must be another way to get our point across to the horse without offending or creating tension in that horse.” Now through tomorrow, you can get a free pair of Spursuaders with orders of over $300 or more when you use code LR300 at checkout.

Check it out here. Photo courtesy of Mare Modern; words by Leslie Wylie.

Mare Modern Goods: Mare Modern Goods is aptly named, offering a selection of apparel, accessories, home goods and gifts featuring original designs that are — like our favorite mares — bright, bold and a little bit sassy. And because they know how important being matchy-matchy is, different collections pair themes across multiple products ranging from pillows to artwork, shirts and socks to saddle pads.  Are you more of a Lovey, Badass, Channing, Foxy, Willa + Trooper or Ned? That’s something that ultimately only you can decide, but personally … I’ve got to say, you look to me like a badass. Today you can take 21% off your order using code KLREN21.

Photo courtesy of Perri’s Leather.

Perri’s Leather: You know Perri’s from their Kentucky booth — the one with the gorgeous Amish handcrafted halters and leads? Well these are their best-selling half-chaps, crafted from supple suede cowhide and featuring reinforced inner legs and stretch panels, which provide a near custom fit and help the chap form to your legs for peak performance and comfort. Snag ’em for $20 off NOW! They’re marked down from $50.95 to only $30 with code ZIP. 

Banixx: On his annual Kentucky cross country course walks Jimmy Wofford is fond of referencing one of his many Jimmy-isms: “Experience is something you don’t get until just after you need it.” I’d say something similar about equine skin infection products — you don’t need them until you NEED them, and by then it’s too late. The wise horse owner keeps skin infection products on hand, so that the moment your horse starts cooking some crud you can jump right on treating it immediately.

I’ve had fantastic experience with Banixx products, and in particular the Banixx Pet Care Bacterial & Fungal Infection Spray. I’ve kept it in my grooming kit, ready to go, this spring, so at the slightest hint of rain rot I was able to treat it from the get-go with a highly effective product.

Banixx products, which also include an anti-fungal and anti-bacterial shampoo and a wound care cream, are on sale this week via Valley Vet Supply — you’ll automatically get 20% off when you order from Valley Vet! 

Horse & Country TV: Horse & Country TV is streaming Kentucky this year, and you’re GOING to be watching it, obviously, so there’s no better time to take advantage of this hot deal: One month free trial if you sign up during the week of the Virtual Vendor Village. Plus, you can check out all of H&C TV’s other great programming, like highlights from Carolina International and Master Classes with Liz Halliday-Sharp, Imogen Murray, Tim Burton, Ben Hobday, William Fox-Pitt and many more.

Go Shopping. Go Eventing!

Check out the full list of Friday deals here. Go Eventing, and Go Shopping!

Clock Is Ticking on These Thursday Virtual Vendor Village Deals — Don’t Miss Out!

No secret that vendor shopping is one of my favorite eventing pastimes, and we’re so very happy here at EN to connect our favorite companies with other like-minded shoppers! Each day we’re bringing you new deals via EN’s second annual Virtual Vendor Village (check out Thursday’s deals here), then sharing our top picks of the day. Here are five that caught my fancy today!

Photo by Kerrits, Words/Longings by Leslie Wylie.

Kerrits: Our friends at Kerrits have rolled out the red carpet for EN’s Virtual Vendor Village.  Their Tent Sale is offering incredible bargains on breeches, gloves, tops, jackets, outerwear and more. My Kerrits krush — the Stretch Competitor Koat, marked down from $129 to just $69. It comes in gorgeous colors like Plumeria, Henna, Skylark and Flint Plaid … so fresh and springy!

VIP Equestrian: Don’t listen to me, who has won exactly zero (0) medals — listen to six-time Olympian Phillip Dutton, who says, “I’m really excited about the VIP saddle pads. I think the concept is a revolution for horses’ backs and the way that they fit.” That endorsement, plus this video of it protecting an iPhone as it gets run over by a car, is all you need to know. Get $10 off an order (valid 1 use per customer, good through 4/30/2021) using code LR2021.

ShowAssist: When you need an extra hand at the horse show, wouldn’t it be nice to hire some short-term help with the click of a button? ShowAssist is a mobile app that connects owners, trainers and riders with experienced grooms and other support staff for help with everything from “StallAssist” tasks like bathing and braiding, stall setup/takedown, hand-grazing and night checks to “RingAssist” tasks like schooling ring jump crew and ringside grooming. Technology … the future is now! Learn more and download the app here.

Stable View: If you have a Stable View event on your 2021 calendar (even if it’s just in pencil), this is the deal is for you (and it could turn that pencil into pen!). The premier Aiken, South Carolina venue has three offers running for Thursday: William Fox Pitt hat and DVD for $25 shipped; 50% off Oktoberfest accommodations (call 484-356-3173 to redeem); 50% off Eventing Academy Horse Trials (call 484-356-3173 to redeem).

Ecovet: It’s starting to get buggy out there — are you stocked up on fly spray? Now’s your chance to stockpile the good stuff with this 30% off offer from Ecovet (use promo code Virtual30), the first fatty-acid fly repellent for horses. Tested and endorsed by veterinarians, Ecovet provides a legit alternative to toxic pesticides. We’ve all been burnt before by “all-natural fly sprays” that turn out to be useless garbage, but this one is different — IT REALLY WORKS. And! It stays put. Many thanks to Dr. John and his crew for their continued support of EN!

Check out the full list of Thursday deals here. Go Eventing, and Go Shopping!

 

 

Thursday Video from Cambox: Beach Break on the Bordeaux Coast

Bordeaux, France, has wine AND a beach? Sign me up.

This video was shared by a rider named Jade, who recently hit the surf with her horses Safir and Kantoum de Soulac. We’ve fired it up at about the 7:40 mark, when the ocean is just coming into view. Watch as your stress washes away with the waves.

Cambox is currently on sale for up to 30% off! Click here to score a deal.

Wednesday Video from Kentucky Performance Products: RNS Video ‘Event Magazine’ Is a Time Capsule

The RNS Video Media archives are a wild and wonderful place, and they recently released a “video magazine” series from WAY back in the day featuring footage from long lost events like North Georgia and Trojan Ranch. The list of cameos goes on and on: Lisa Sabo, Bea & Derek DiGrazia, Jack LeGoff, Vicky Koss, Linda Waltenspiel, David Wilding Davies, Nick Holmes-Smith, Irja Solner, Pam Newell, John Staples, Lisa & Jon Tatham, Mike Huber, Therese Washstock, Michael Godfrey, Jamie Walton, Courtnay Ramsay, Missy Rasenhouse, Bruce Davidson, Tom Wilson, Captain Mark Phillips, Jim Graham, Karen “Lende” O’Connor, Nancy Guyotte, Grant Shneidman, Karen Reuter, Jane Sleeper, Jiffy Read, Anne Dorsey, Nini Stevenson, Trish Gilbert, Kelli McMullen, Lisa Anderson, Karen Stives … I could recite names for another five minutes but I’m already out of breath.

One memorable moment is an interview with Jimmy Wofford, in which he is asked about what the future holds. “The future of eventing is good,” he said. “It’s a growth sport. There are more and more people getting into it right now. There are a lot of things they like about it — it’s not a political scene like some of the show ring sports that they’ve been in. There’s a lot more excitement. People are outdoors, it’s a very risk oriented group of people.”

Keep these time capsules coming, please, RNS Video Media! Subscribe to their YouTube channel here, and be sure to support them by ordering your videos at events.

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Not sure which horse supplement best meets your horse’s needs? We are here to help. Contact Kentucky Performance Products, LLC at 859-873-2974 or visit our website at KPPusa.com.

Friday Four-Star Roundup: Chatt Hills, Fair Hill & Twin Rivers

It’s a busy weekend for four-stars! Chattahoochee Hills in Georgia, Fair Hill in Maryland and Twin Rivers in California are all hosting CCI4*-S divisions, and Twin Rivers is hosting a CCI4*-L as well. It’s a lot to keep up with, but we’ll be bringing you daily updates from all three events.

Liz Halliday-Sharp and Cooley Quicksilver lead the Chattahoochee Hills CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman Photography.

Chattahoochee Hills

Chatt Hills is one phase ahead of the other four-stars, having completed both dressage and show jumping phases. Liz Halliday-Sharp is out front with Cooley Quicksilver, a 10-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding (Womanizer x Kylemore Crystal) owned by The Monster Partnership, having moved from second after dressage into the lead when formerly first-placed Lauren Nicholson and Vermiculus had a rail. They’ll have a narrow lead of 0.3 points heading into cross country above Alexandra Knowles with Ms. Poppins in second and Clayton Fredericks with FE Ophelia in third. Maggie has Cooley Quicksilver horse pegged as the division winner — check out her “By the Numbers” Chatt Hills prediction here.

Chattahoochee Hills H.T.: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Fair Hill

Emily Beshear and Deal With It lead CCI4*-S dressage at Fair Hill in the nine-horse division. Emily and her own 13-year-old Thoroughbred gelding (Medaglia D’Oro x Amada, by Unbridled) scored a 30.4, edging out Lisa Marie Fergusson and Honor Me by a little more than a point. Daniel Clasing and MW Gangster’s Game round out the top three.

On other fronts, Jennie Brannigan and Connory lead the CCI3*-S on 27.8, followed by Cindy Anderson-Blank with MHS Cooley Vegas in second and Boyd Martin with Penhill Celtic in third. Martin Douzant leads the CCI2*-S with Frame Shamrock on a score of 28.0, followed by Charlotte Stillfried and Palma D in second and Lillian Heard with Chilly in third. The event is also running Training through Advanced horse trials divisions and an Advanced combined test, with a choice between 4* Test B and 5* Test B. Silva Martin is schooling Luke 140 in the former; Phillip Dutton leads the latter with Z, followed by Jennie Brannigan with Stella Artois and Valerie Vizcarrondo Pride with Favian.

How will the weekend shake out? Check out Maggie’s “By the Numbers” analysis here.

Fair Hill International April H.T. and CCI-S: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Twin Rivers

Twin Rivers is running two four-star divisions, both pretty fun-sized with a lot of the big players having headed east in advance of Kentucky: the 4*-L has four entries (check out Maggie’s “By the Numbers Preview” here), and the CCI4*-S has two.

In the long format, Amber Levine and Cellar Farm’s Cinzano, a 10-year-old Holsteiner gelding (Classe VDL x Walta, by San Patrignano Corrado) have the dressage lead on a score of 31.5. Madison Temkin and Dr. Hart sit less than a rail behind in second, and Marc Grandia is third with Campari FFF.

Lauren LoPiccolo leads with itty-bitty CCI4*-S field after dressage with Diego, her own 13-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Vingino x Twilight, by Kojak) on a dressage mark of 40.1. Twin Rivers marks their first CCI4*-S start, and we hope they’ll have fun out there — this pair has never had a cross country jump penalty, why start now? They finished 2nd in their Advanced move-up at Woodside last October, and warmed up to this weekend’s outing with an 8th place Advanced finish at Twin Rivers’ February horse trials followed by a third in the Intermediate at Galway a couple weeks ago. The other competitor in the division is Andrea Baxter with Laguna Seca, her own 2010 Holsteiner gelding (Indy 500 x Linaro), and they’re just a couple points behind.

End of day update: Lauren and Andrea switched positions after show jumping as Lauren had a rail. You can read Kim Miller’s Friday recap here.

Twin Rivers is the only U.S. event live streaming this weekend, so if you need your fix here is your hookup!

Twin Rivers Spring International: [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores] [Live Stream]

Meet Sophia Carattini & Artax, 2020 T.I.P. Junior Eventing Champions

Photo by Victoria DeMore.

The Jockey Club Thoroughbred Incentive Program (T.I.P.) offers a wealth of resources for OTTB owners, from a portal to research racing tattoos to a youth program and special classes at horse shows. They also offer incentives, including year-end performance awards to the Thoroughbreds accumulating the most points at all horse shows in each of the T.I.P. award categories and divisions throughout the year.

One-hundred sixty-one event horses participated in the program last year — scroll down to view the eventing division winners, and you can see a complete list of winners here.

“Despite challenges caused by the pandemic, we received applications representing 522 Thoroughbreds competing in more than 9,600 classes and divisions during the 2020 award year, including participants in online horse shows,” said Kristin Werner, senior counsel for The Jockey Club and the administrator of T.I.P. “Winners will receive ribbons, prize money, and a variety of prizes, including custom Horseware coolers, halters, bags, keychains, and apparel.”

Of the two overall eventing awards, the honor of 2020 Champion Junior Rider went to Artax (JC Name: Duke of Del Rey), owned and ridden by Sophia Carattini, with Mahogany Dancer and Olivia Cannizzaro as Reserve Champion.

We recently caught up with Sophia to learn more about her OTTB’s journey from the track to an eventing career.

Born in 2009 in Kentucky, the grey gelding (Rockport Harbor x Queen Dido, by Thunder Gulch) raced all over the country under the name Duke of Del Rey. He earned $264,876 in 61 starts including six firsts, 13 seconds, and 10 thirds. He came off the track at age seven, and Sophia bought him from Lee Alison in July of 2018. His new show name, Artax, was inspired by the horse in The Neverending Story, and he goes by “Frosty” around the barn.

“He is a sensitive horse, and he has definitely helped me work on myself as a rider,” 15-year-old Sophia says. The pair contested their first event together at Chattahoochee Hills a month after she got him, and she says their teamwork has continued to get stronger since then.

“By the end of 2019, we had finally synced up and I figured out how to ride him more off my leg, greatly improving our dressage scores,” Sophia says. “At the Florida Horse Park in November, we received our best dressage score of a 23.3. Thanks to a clear stadium and cross country, we were able to get our first win at Beginner Novice. In 2019, we were also able to get the T.I.P. Reserve Grand Champion for Eventing, which was very exciting.”

“Rolling into 2020, we had two more wins at Majestic Oaks and Three Lakes. We then decided to make the jump up to Novice in Feb 2020. My nerves definitely made an appearance at the first Novice run! Luckily our second Novice show was a lot better; we finished second at Florida Horse Park.”

Photo by Xpress Foto.

“Our record at Novice isn’t consistent, but we definitely seem to be in sync with our dressage and cross country,” Sophia says. “I love dressage, and Frosty loves cross country, so our scores definitely reflect that. Literally the only cross country jump penalty we have had since showing is because I missed a jump. Frosty is always Mr. Reliable out on the course.

“This year, we hope to start showing at Training and are definitely looking forward to going to American Eventing Championships at Novice. Frosty has been such an amazing horse for me and I really couldn’t ask for a better partner. We also wouldn’t be as successful with our trainer, Brie Seltser at SilverStride Equestrian Center. She has helped shape me into the rider I am today. I couldn’t be happier to have won the T.I.P. Eventing Junior Rider Grand Champion for 2020, but I am also proud that Frosty was the 6th overall Eventing OTTB out of 161. He deserves so many carrots!”

Indeed. Best of luck to you, Sophia and Artax!

Performance awards will be available once again in 2021 and will be based on results in shows from December 1, 2020, through November 30, 2021. The deadline for submissions is December 20, 2021. Updated forms are available here 

Created and announced in October 2011, T.I.P. recognizes and rewards the versatility of the Thoroughbred through sponsorship of Thoroughbred classes and high point awards at sanctioned horse shows, performance awards, a recreational riding program, Championship horse shows and non-competition awards. Visit the website and Facebook page for more information. 

2020 T.I.P. Eventing Performance Awards

Champion Eventing: Great Quest (Other Great Quest) & Martin Douzant, Hannah Ong
Champion Junior Rider: Artax (Duke of Del Rey) & Sophia Carattini
Reserve Junior Rider: Mahogany Dancer & Olivia Cannizzaro

1. Implicit & Doris Hoppers (MD)
2. Whatinsamhill & Kirsten LaVassar (SC)
3. Dispatcher & Stephanie Calendrillo (KY)
4. Shootmetothemoon & Eliza Herman (MD)
5. Royal Archie & Elizabeth Bortuzzo (NJ)
6. Artax (Duke of Del Rey) & Sophia Carattini, Nicole Carattini (FL)
7. Bluegrass Beat & Brooke Webb (SC)
8. Steddy Eddy (Di Colas Thunder) & Susan Gehris (VA)
9. Southern Cider (Shelly’s Cider) & Jessica Brown (NC)
10. Chance of Liftoff (Honey Fields) & Jaclyn Burke (MD)
11. Greeley’s Dude & Jennifer Cobb (VA)
12. When Stars Align (Pia Jane) & Brittney Caflisch (TX)
13. Lightning Stone & Nicole Ligon, Nancy Ligon (PA)
14. Thunderstruck (Saint) & Corinna Lewis (KY)
15. I’malreadythere & Christina Lockhart (OH)

Champion Pre-BN Central: Thunderstruck (Saint) & Corinna Lewis
Reserve Pre-BN Central: Dispatcher & Stephanie Calendrillo
Champion Pre-BN East: Implicit & Doris Hoppers
Reserve Pre-BN East: Bluegrass Beat & Brooke Webb
Champion Pre-BN West: Devine Revelation & Amy Lott
Reserve Pre-BN West: E F Five & Jennifer Ferro
Champion Beg Novice Central: Dispatcher & Stephanie Calendrillo
Reserve Beg Novice Central: Bugatti Dreamin & Maddy Baynes
Champion Beg Novice East: Chance of Liftoff (Honey Fields) & Jaclyn Burke
Reserve Beg Novice East: Implicit & Doris Hoppers
Champion Beg Novice West: Dealership & Tracie Coleman
Reserve Beg Novice West: Native Heart & Maguy Palluelblanc
Champion Novice Central: I’malreadythere & Christina Lockhart
Reserve Novice Central: When Stars Align (Pia Jane) & Brittney Caflisch
Champion Novice East Whatinsamhill & Kirsten LaVassar
Reserve Novice East: Southern Cider (Shelly’s Cider) & Jessica Brown
Champion Novice West: Awfully Lucky & Kathleen Boyle
Reserve Novice West: P R Cash Kid & Olivia Donnarumma
Champion Training Central: Amp’d Up & Emma Hilbert
Reserve Training Central: Who Dat (Ide Be a Who Dat) & Brandi Podboy
Champion Training East: Shootmetothemoon & Eliza Herman
Reserve Training East: Spintastic & Kathleen Abrams
Champion Training West: Sky Rise (Skyrise) & Summer Gloeckner
Reserve Training West: Sweet Radiance & Hilary Naleway
Champion Modified/1*: Raucous Caucus (The Big Rooster) & Michelle Frazier
Reserve Modified/1*: Uptown Indy & Melissa Morgan Paul
Champion Preliminary/2*: Royal Archie & Elizabeth Bortuzzo
Reserve Preliminary /2*: Count Julian & Amanda Richard
Champion Intermediate/3*L/S: Belongs to Teufer & Elizabeth Bortuzzo
Reserve Intermediate/3*L/S: Shakedown Street (Sound the Bell) & Melanie Smith

 

 

 

 

What’s Happening? Your Guide to Clinics, Schooling Shows & More [Updated 4/9]

Featured Activity: Advanced level eventer Babette Lenna will be offering a series of intensive clinics at Rest & Be Thankful Farm throughout the season based around key training themes that apply to riders and horses of all levels. Individualized lessons, lectures, demonstrations and progressive coaching throughout the season make this a great opportunity for riders looking to add structure and depth to their training this year! Click here to learn more.

“What’s Happening?,” presented in partnership with Strider, is your complete guide to clinics, schooling shows and other riding and educational opportunities.

Need a way to accept digital entries and payment for your venue’s next equestrian activity? Join Strider, a mobile friendly, user-controlled services platform that connects organizers with riders. It’s easy and fast to use — click here to get started.

Here is what’s happening in your USEA Area!

Location Quick Links: Area I | Area II | Area III | Area IV | Area V | Area VI | Area VII | Area VIII | Area IX | Area X

Area I

Area II

Area III

Area IV

Area V

Area VI

Area VII

Area VIII

Area IX

Area X

Go Eventing.

SmartPak on the Steppe: Meet 2021 Mongol Derby Competitor Kayleigh Davenport

In August 2021 SmartPakker Kayleigh Davenport will embark upon the ride of her life: the Mongol Derby, widely regarded as the toughest horse race in the world. Inspired by the Genghis Khan’s original “pony express,” there’s no trail or set route, just a series of GPS checkpoints/horse exchange stations to hit over the course of 1,000 km and 7-10 days. Riders carry only 11 pounds of gear, rely on nomadic herding families for sustenance and shelter, and spend their days riding at speed on native horses who are equal parts incredible AND incredibly unpredictable. 

SmartPak was a strong supporter of NM’s own Leslie Wylie when she tackled the race in 2017, and now we’re excited to cheer Kaleigh on! Over the coming months we’ll be sharing her journey to the race. First things first, let’s get to know Kaleigh better — and who better to interrogate interview her than Leslie!

Photo courtesy of Kayleigh Davenport.

LW: One unique thing about the Derby is that it draws competitors from all walks of life. There are not just endurance riders represented, but riders from every background imaginable. There have been eventers, ranch hands, jockeys, polo players … last year’s winner, Bob Long, was a 70-year-old self-described cowboy. The Derby is truly a universally humanizing experiment in how horses bring us together across a whole globe’s worth of geopolitics and ideology. Out on the steppe, at the end of the day, we’re all just people who love horses. I think SmartPak stands for a similar feeling of unity that transcends disciplines, which makes you a pretty perfect representative. Can you tell us a bit about your equestrian background, which from what I understand is pretty diverse?

KD: I am a self-proclaimed discipline hopper and am always looking for a new adventure. Both my mother and grandmother were equestrians so luckily, I didn’t have much of a choice. I started out doing open shows and 4H along with local barrel racing and gymkhanas. As a teen I started showing competitively on the AQHA circuit. This is where I like to call home when anyone asks, “so what kind of riding do you do?”– AQHA all-around girl at heart! I studied at Stonehill College where I joined the IHSA team. During my time in IHSA I fell in love with the HJ/Eq world and began riding and leasing horses in this realm. Over the last few years I made it a focus to spend more time with my aging gelding (my heart horse), Comet, and slowed down a bit by doing a ton of trail riding and some hunter paces. Comet retired and went to live in Vermont with my family in the Fall. I quickly and unexpectedly fell in love with a 9-year-old cutting horse, “Spare,” and have once again discipline-hopped over to the cattle events. We are currently doing the Ranch Sorting, Team Penning and Ranch Riding while also legging up to do a few Competitive Trail Rides this summer.

Photo courtesy of Kayleigh Davenport.

LW: My takeaway is that you’re something of a chameleon and able to adapt which is going to be a real strength for you, I think, because there is a LOT of adapting you’ll have to do in Mongolia! From the culture to the horses, no matter how hard you train for the Derby, nothing in the western world (and I mean western as in geographically, not as in the western discipline!) can quite prepare you for what is coming your way. Speaking of preparation, what sorts of things have you been doing to get ready for the race?

KD: It has been a life changing experience already, just getting prepared for the race. I got accepted to the Derby in May of 2020 and quickly strategized my training regimen for the next 14+ months. In terms of riding time I have certainly increased my hours in the saddles by dedicating more time out of the arena on longer treks with my personal horses. I am lucky to have some great friends, with some quirky horses I have been able to borrow for more of a challenge — I never turn down an extra ride! I have also traveled a few times out to the west coat to ride with Stevie and Dylan Delahunt (Derby veterans and Adventurer Extraordinaires) and their amazing string of endurance horses for multiple long and challenging days in the tack.

I have drastically increased my physical fitness routine as well. I have partnered with Dr. Alison Hartman and her equestrian focused fitness coaching, EQ-Fit. In addition to being a physical therapist, she is also an accomplished equestrian so she has created workouts specifically tailored to the bodies of riders. I am dedicating at least five days per week to these workouts, being a combination of strength training and cardio.

Something interesting that I have also been consciously trying to prepare for is my mental fitness. Before this, I have never been the type person to take the time for meditation or getting into a deeper head space in terms of my riding, or even day to day life. I have started to meditate over the last year and have been trying to become more aware of the process and the opportunity I have been given and turning doubts and anxiety into excitement that is fueling my fire. I believe at the end of the day, through all the physical training, mental toughness is what separates a good athlete from a great one.

Photo courtesy of Kayleigh Davenport.

LW:  It sounds like you’re doing all the right homework, and that you’re bringing self-awareness and honesty about your strengths and weaknesses to the table which is so important. You have to get real real with yourself out there on the steppe. Are there any elements of the Derby that you’re particularly excited about? Or, alternately, you’re feeling trepidation about?

KD: I am so excited for the whole experience! I haven’t had the opportunity to travel abroad much in my life so I am especially excited to not only go to the other side of the world, but to a country where the horse is such a key factor in the culture. I cannot wait to be galloping from ger to ger through the gorgeous landscape of the steppe. While the competitive side of me won’t let me forget this is a race, I am making it a priority to fully take in the culture during this experience.

I think I am most anxious about the (many) factors that are so unknown and unpredictable. I have heard some horror stories about GI problems and stomach bugs wiping out half the derby field as well as being swallowed up my an invisible marmot hole.

Photo courtesy of Kayleigh Davenport.

LW: Oh wow, you’re in for such an adventure! I’m so glad you are committed to taking in the cultural experience. Win, lose or draw, that’s the reward that nobody (or, rather, no homicidal pony) can take away from you.

As for the food, it’s no PF Chang’s but I kind of loved it, honestly. The goat meat I could do without, but so many yummy noodles and sweet rolls! I definitely gave away my lead there at the beginning a few times due to, em, “carb loading.” And the dumplings were an absolute revelation, cloaking whatever mystery meat was on the menu in hand-rolled, pillowy dough so we didn’t have to look at it. Some of the swankier host gers even served them up with off-brand ketchup, a delicacy I liked to refer to as “wilderness ravioli.” Try training your stomach for the airag, a ceremonial Mongolian beverage made of fermented mare’s milk, with a shot or two of some old yogurt that’s been left out in the sun for a few days. It’s not too bad.

The marmot holes, however, I can’t help you with. You’re probably going to fall in one. Sorry.

One more question and then we’ll wrap this up: on a scale of 1 to 10, what is your pain tolerance?

KD: I would probably say my pain tolerance is about an 8, I would classify myself as a pretty tough cookie — especially when there is a goal in sight!

Go Kayleigh! Keep an eye out for future updates, and as always we encourage you to support SmartPak, a company that — no matter how big — never ceases to encourage us to go after our dreams. Follow SmartPak on social: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.

 

US Eventing Team Seeking Third Ameristralian for 2021 Tokyo Olympics

With Boyd Martin and Phillip Dutton virtually on lock to represent the U.S. at the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games, team selectors have issued a call for a third Ameristralian to round out the squad.

“Our preference is that the individual actually be from Australia,” says U.S. Eventing Chef d’Equipe Erik Duvander, who represented Sweden at the 1992 Olympics and coached Japanese, Swedish, and New Zealand teams before coming stateside. “If they already live in the U.S. — I’m looking at you Ryan Wood, Dom Schramm, Clayton Fredericks — great, but preexisting citizenship isn’t a prerequisite. We would welcome and fast-track a green card for Chris Burton, Andrew Hoy, Sam Griffiths, Shane Rose, Bill Levett … the list goes on and on.”

Erik notes that being male is not necessarily mandatory, but having an Australian accent is.

“The accent is of paramount importance,” Duvander explains. “An Australian accent isn’t something you can just train into riders. They either have it, or they don’t. We’ve been trying for years to train an accent into otherwise would-be Olympians and it rarely takes.”

For instance, he says, they’ve had Liz Halliday-Sharp in twice-weekly sessions with a voice coach. She is also required to eat every other meal at Outback Steakhouse. “At this point, though, the clock is ticking,” Duvander says. “If only Liz could say ‘I’ll have the shrimp on the barbie with a side of bloomin’ onion, mate’ to a server as well and convincingly as she rides, she’d be a shoo-in for the team. But with only four months left before Tokyo, to have any shot at a podium finish we have to explore other options.”

Since title sponsorship of the U.S. Eventing Team, formerly held by British automaker Land Rover, was taken over by Vegemite last month, the team’s reinvention of its brand identity from American to Australian is more imperative now than ever.

“Vegemite is actually a really apt metaphor for our team,” says Jenni Autry, USEF Managing Director of Eventing. “Like, what is Vegemite, even? Nobody knows. Nobody cares. Nobody is thinking, when they sink their teeth into a slice of toast slathered with Vegemite, I wonder where this meaty, salty goo came from. You don’t get all existential about it. You just eat it. You embrace the mystery.”

“As long as the mystery is from Australia,” Duvander adds.

Happy April Fool’s!

Morven Park’s 2021 Season Kicks Off with Spring Horse Trials

Skyelar Voss won the Open Intermediate division with Argyle. Photo by Erin Gilmore Photography.

Over 200 competitors turned out at Morven Park International Equestrian Center over the weekend for the Leesburg, Virginia venue’s Spring Horse Trials. Here’s a brief recap of the action, with divisions ranging from Beginner Novice to Intermediate and including for the first time a Prelim-Training division:

Congrats to Open Intermediate winners Skyeler Voss and Argyle, her own 13-year-old Thoroughbred gelding (Private Gold x Aunt Tizzy, by Cee’s Tizzy). This well-established three-star pair started their weekend in third on a dressage score of 32.2, then climbed a place in each subsequent phase to claim the top spot, show jumping clear and collecting four time penalties cross country. “It felt so good to be back out on my favorite Thoroughbred doing what we love!,” Skyeler shared on Facebook. We love Skyeler and the Morningside Training Farm crew for repping the OTTBs — and looking great doing it! #TeamCheckers

Boyd Martin and Penhill Celtic began the weekend in the lead then slipped to second having had a rail and 5.6 cross country time penalties. Third-placed Alex Reed and On Broadway were the only pair in the 15-horse division to finish cross country inside the time.

We’re proud of our own Jumper Nation editor/four-star eventer Ema Klugman‘s win in the Open Prelim A with RF Redfern, Jeni Klugman’s 8-year-old Westphalian mare (Any Given Sunday x Zsa Zsa). As with Skyeler, Ema climbed a place each phase for the win on a final score of 28.0.

“The Fern … she handles each challenge with aplomb, and like any good student she’s always eager to guess the right answer and hungry for more,” Ema shared on Facebook. “We started with a relaxed, obedient dressage test which could have featured more pizazz but scored a 27. She positively bounced around the show jumping, throwing in a few tempi changes for good measure which cracked up Amina Harouna who was filming. I started out steadily on cross country to let her find her feet and understand the bigger jumps. By number 6 she was having the time of her life so I let her gallop on. There is something really satisfying about a horse who gains confidence as they go around a course! It fuels my addiction of producing horses, and boy has she has been fun and rewarding to bring along. Thank you Marilyn Little a million times over for finding this special horse. This was the 10th event of her career and her 7th win … so we are looking forward to many more!”

Martin Douzant was second in the division with Frame Shamrock, and Daniel Clasing was third with Olney Uncle Sam, who has been competed through the four-star level with Emily Beshear.

Mike Pendleton was the winner of Open Prelim B with Redfield Fellow, an 11-year-old Dutch gelding (Ustinov x Kelly) owned by Lydia Sarro. They were tied for second after dressage, then jumped their way to the top of the leaderboard to finish on a score of 35.2. It sounds like Mike thinks very highly of this horse as an upper level prospect, and he’s for sale, so reach out if you are interested!

Also in the Open Prelim B division, Mackenzie Parks and Mojave Moon were second; Morgan Connelly and Benevolence were third.

Bruce Davidson Sr. and Invito. Photo by Erin Gilmore Photography.

Other Morven winners include:

Junior Training Rider: Clare Brady & Goodness Gracious (37.5)
Open Training: Bruce Davidson & Invito (30.7)
Prelim-Training: Martin Douzant & Olympus (32.4)
Training Horse: Allison Smith & Great Red Dragon (32.1)
Training Rider A: Morgyn Johnson & Peter Parker GS (31.1)
Training Rider B: Anna Gibson & Black Label (29.3)
Junior Novice Rider: Kate Thresher & Silver Bop (30.2)
Novice Horse: Jan Byyny & Layla LFS (29.5)
Novice Rider: Holly Thornhill & Phineas Flynn (32.1)
Open Novice: Erin Murphy & Rough Heart (30.2)
Junior Beginner Novice Rider: Ainsley Colgan & Ginobi (26.1)
Open Beginner Novice A: Elizabeth Henry & Sandino FRF (32.2)
Open Beginner Novice B: Brooke Bayley & Botshabelo MVH Z (28.1)
You can view complete results here.

“This was my first time attending Spring Horse Trials and I was awe-inspired by the sheer scope of an eventing competition,” says Stacey Metcalfe, Morven Park’s new Executive Director/CEO. “Each phase of competition was more exciting than the last and of course the competitors were all so impressive. We cannot thank the riders, officials, judges, and volunteers enough for coming out this weekend, in the sun and in the rain, to celebrate horse trials with us.”

Cross-country took place on the Park’s sprawling 1,000 acres and competitors enjoyed dressage and show jump arenas outfitted with Eurotex footing from Attwood Equestrian Surfaces.

The Morven Park International Equestrian Center thanks Sponsors SmartPak and Winchester Equipment Company, Silver sponsor Adequan, and Bronze level sponsors Total Equine Veterinary Associates, Coat Defense and In Memoriam Pet Services for their support of Spring Horse Trials.

The Morven Park Fall International Horse Trials and CCI4*-L, CCI3*/2*YH-S, CCI 4*/3*/2*-S will be held October 6 – 10 and the Park’s popular hunter/jumper summer series kicks off next weekend with a sold-out show. Visit MorvenPark.org/Equestrian for details. For sponsorship opportunities, email [email protected]

Marilyn Little & RF Scandalous Still in Lead After Stable View CCI4*-S Show Jumping

Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous lead the CCI4*-S. Photo by Sam Keats.

It was a soggy show jumping day at Stable View, with a couple holds due to rain and lightning. Jumping for the CCI*-S and part of the CCI2*-S were postponed until Saturday, which anticipates a much improved forecast.

In the CCI4*-S Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous built upon their dressage lead, jumping clear around the Chris Bernard-designed course. No surprise here — as we noted in “By the Numbers,” this pair has had only two rails in 16 of 18 career stadium rounds; the last one occurred in 2018.

Buck Davidson and Erroll Gobey. Photo by Sam Keats.

Phillip Dutton and Z, another notoriously careful jumper, kept all the rails up to move from fourth after dressage into second. Buck Davidson and Erroll Gobey moved from sixth to third. Tamie Smith with En Vogue and Buck with Carlevo, who were in equal second after dressage, had one and two rails respectively to slide down a few places. In fourth is Jennie Brannigan with Stella Artois; Phillip Dutton and Fernhill Singapore are fifth. A few pairs managed to leapfrog their way into the top 10, with 12 double-clear rounds in the 50 horse field.

Leslie Law and Lady Chatterley lead the CCI3*-S. Photo by Jenn Catalano.

The CCI3*-S division has a new leader, Leslie Law with Lady Chatterley, who moved up from second when Amy Ruth Borun and Vitalis withdrew. Liz Halliday-Sharp and Cooley HHS Calmaria advanced into second, and in third is Tim Bourke with Lennard. Rounding out the top five are Kurt Martin with D.A. Lifetime and Lillian Heard with Dassett Olympus. Seventeen out of 50 CCI3*-S pairs managed double clear rounds.

Tim Bourke and Lennard. Photo by Sam Keats.

The CCI1*-S and CCI2*-S divisions completed dressage on Friday, with Alyssa Phillips leading both with FE Celestino and Cornelius Bo respectively.

Crockett Miller and Mr Panda, 2nd in the CCI1*-S. Photo by Emilie Rollet.

The USEF/USEA Stable View Spring Horse Trials and Adequan/USEF Youth Team Challenge continues with the remaining show jumping and all cross country on Saturday. After six weeks with no measurable precipitation, the footing looks to be in excellent condition.

Stable View Spring 1*/2*/3*/4*: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores] [Volunteer]

Marilyn Little & RF Scandalous One-Up Themselves to Lead Stable View Spring CCI4*-S

FEI CCI-S 4* leader Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous are fresh off a win in the 4* at Red Hills International H.T. Photo by Jenn Catalano.

If eventing is a game of inches, Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous eked out every last possible millimeter today at Stable View Spring. After winning the Red Hills CCI4*-S on their dressage score of 22.4, they one-upped themselves in the first phase of this weekend’s CCI4*-S, leading the 50-horse field on a 21.7.

Maggie’s “By the Numbers” report noted that Marilyn and “Kitty,” a 16-year-old Oldenburg mare (Carry Gold x Richardia) owned by Jacqueline Mars and Phoebe and Michael Manders, have a two-year average of 22.0 dressage penalties. Today’s lead at Stable View extends their winning dressage streak to 12 consecutive A/4*/5* starts.

Buck Davidson with Carlevo and Tamie Smith with En Vogue are in equal second heading into CCI4*-S show jumping tomorrow.

An abundant field of over 200 competitors are contesting the USEF/USEA Stable View Spring FEI CCI-S 1*/2*/3*/4* and Adequan/USEF Youth Team Challenge.  The 4* and 3* divisions contested dressage in the Outdoor Arena in front of the Pavilion, and the 2* division ran in the Hunter Ring. The 1* star riders will begin their dressage tomorrow morning and go on to show jumping in the afternoon.

Elizabeth Halliday-Sharp and Cooley HHS sit in third in the CCI-S 3* division. Photo by Jenn Catalano.

Erin Kanara & Warren LVSZ sit tied for 5th place in the 3* division. Photo by Sam Keats.

Best six after dressage:

FEI CCI-S 4*
1st: Marilyn Little & RF Scandalous (21.70)
2nd T: Bruce Davidson Jr. & Carlevo (25.00)
2nd T: Tamra Smith & En Vogue (25.00)
4th: Phillip Dutton & Z (25.60)
5th: Alexandra Knowles & Ms. Poppins (27.20)
6th: Bruce Davidson Jr. & Erroll Gobey (27.30)

FEI CCI-S 3*
1st: Amy Ruth Borun & Vitalis (28.50)
2nd: Leslie Law & Lady Chatterley (29.40)
3rd: Elisabeth Halliday-Sharp & Cooley HHS Calmaria (29.70)
4th: Dan Kreitl & Horales (30.30)
5th: Tim Bourke & Lennard (30.80)
6th T: Kurt Martin & D.A. Lifetime (31.30)
6th T: Meg Pellegrini & RF Eloquence (31.30)

FEI CCI-S 2*
1st: Alyssa Phillips & Cornelius Bo (27.50)
2nd: Katie Malensek & Landjaeger (28.00)
3rd: Elisabeth Halliday- Sharp & Shanroe Cooley (28.20)
4th: Lillian Heard & Chilly (29.20)
5th T: Erin Kanara & Warren LVSZ (29.80)
5th T: Nilson Moreira Da Silva & Giana (29.80)

Stable View Spring 1*/2*/3*/4*: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores] [Volunteer]

Stable View Launches ‘Brave Today’ Community Equestrian Outreach Program

Photo courtesy of Stable View.

When Barry Olliff says he wants Stable View to be a “gathering place” for the community, he means it. And his newest initiative is focused on opening the doors even wider.

Today the venue announced the launch of “Brave Today,” a community equestrian outreach program for the children and youth of Aiken County, ages eight to sixteen, and future 501(c)3.

“Beginning Monday, April 12th, 2021, from 4:30-6:30 p.m. and running every Monday for six weeks, this program is designed to offer and equestrian experience for underprivileged children as well as those children faced with mental health challenges.

“Each child will get the opportunity to engage in horse related activities in an outdoor, friendly and quiet atmosphere. At Stable View they will connect with the horses, stimulating their tactile senses to improve cognition, concentration, memory, social, communication and leadership skills. Every ‘Brave Today’ child will work on developing a relationship with horses and others at their own pace, in a comfortable space, finding their own unique gifts and talents.

“By way of background, it’s estimated that one in five people suffer from a mental health episode everyday, which includes children as young as eight years of age. We believe that these issues are very prevalent in Aiken county. Stable View’s ‘Brave Today’ goal is to provide a safe haven for those children and youth to gather, experience the connection of horses, develop life long skills and provide support after each program through mentorship and scholarships. Helping each individual transition into other local programs similar in nature.”

For more information contact Janice Keats at 707-481-3970 or Stable View at 484-356-3173.

We thank Stable View for its commitment to sharing the therapeutic value of horses with all. And, we’re looking forward to next week’s big event! Over 200 FEI entries have come in for the Spring FEI CCI-S 1/2/3/4* Horse Trials and Adequan/ USEF Youth Team Challenge — you can check the entry status here.

Go Eventing!

For 75 Bucks They’ll Put a Fan Cutout of You in the Stands at Kentucky

Photo via LRK3DE.

This just in from Kentucky:

“The 2021 Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event presented by MARS Equestrian™ won’t have spectators this year, but don’t let that keep you from the event!

“Display your LRK3DE support by showing up at Rolex Stadium with a Fan Cutout. For those who are interested in this opportunity, we are grateful and appreciate your support! The fan cutouts will be produced on the same high quality, weatherproof material that we use in our signage to ensure it is a proper representation of you and your likeness.

“For only $75, your Fan Cutout will be displayed in Rolex Stadium during the ‘Best Weekend All Year’! Cutouts will be in place for the entirety of the event, from April 22-25.

“And who knows, you may even catch a glimpse of yourself on the event live stream!”

Order yours here. If you spot a five-foot-tall fan cutout of a chinchilla in the stands this year ….

Tee-hee.

 

Phillip & Olivia Dutton Dominate FEI Dressage at Carolina International

Dutton family triple-threat incoming! Phillip Dutton leads both the CCI4*-S and CCI3*-S divisions at Carolina International with daughter Olivia leading the CCI2*-S. We caught up with the Duttons as well as other top-placed pairs contesting the event in Raeford, North Carolina this week.

Phillip Dutton and Carlchen in the CCI4*-S. Brant Gamma Photography Photo.

CCI4*-S

Carlchen who? Actually, Phillip’s new ride is quite well known internationally, having extensive experience at the 4* level on two continents under four previous riders. Bred in Germany, he began his career in Australia with Stuart Tinney in 2015 — they were long-listed for the 2016 Rio Olympics — before heading back to Europe to be campaigned by Francis Whittington, then Michelle Kenny of Ireland, then Lauren McLusky of Great Britain. The 13-year-old Oldenburg gelding (Clinton x Sunshine, by Lordanos) also gained some notoriety for having been previously owned by fallen financier Spencer Golding, whose implication in a major embezzlement case in the UK last year saw his extensive string of equine assets dispersed.

Carlchen was sourced by Carol Gee of Fernhill Sporthorses and purchased by Caroline Moran in the fall of 2019 for Phillip, but a minor injury and then the interrupted 2020 season drew out their getting-to-know-you period. They returned to competition in October 2020 and at Pine Tip in February blew everyone’s hair back with a record-breaking 15.0 on the flat in their first Advanced start as a pair. Today in the CCI4*-S, they topped the field with a score of 22.6.

“It’s still a work in progress,” Phillip says. “Obviously, he’s a talented horse and I feel very lucky to have him. We’re starting to get to know each other better and how he reacts and what I’ve got to do to get the best out of him. I still feel there’s plenty of room for improvement there, but it’s an exciting time to have a horse like this.”

Ireland’s Michelle Kenny with Carlchen in 2018. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

“We’ve had him now about a year and a half, so I have been getting to know him, but I haven’t done much competition-wise with him. He’s a really interesting horse. He’s a quiet horse, but there’s a side to him where he has plenty of energy. He has some pizazz about him as well. I’m starting to understand that. He’s getting fitter and more conditioned, so he’s a bit of a different horse there as well. He’s not quite as easy as he was probably six months ago for me because he’s so much more fit and has so much more energy about him.

“I don’t know him that well yet on cross-country, so Saturday will be a different story. It’ll be a learning process there, but there’s a lot, a lot to like about the horse. He’s so athletic and so balanced. There’s not a great deal of difficulty about it him. It’s just a case of getting to know him and producing him well and for him to get to know what I expect as well.

“He’s still in his developing his strength and fitness stage, so he’s far from peaking yet, so Saturday will be a quiet cross country round but hopefully an educational one for him.”

Best of luck to this exciting new-ish pair. As Maggie Deatrick noted in her Carolina By the Numbers, Carlchen has talent written all over his record. With a career average of 29.6 in dressage, clear rounds in 11 of 15 stadium rounds with never more than a single rail, and primarily clear cross country rounds, the main thing left for Phillip to try improve upon is the horse’s pace across the country.

Liz Halliday and Fernhill By Night. Photo by Shelby Allen.

With Phillip and Carlchen taking it a bit easy on Saturday, all eyes will be on Liz Halliday-Sharp and Fernhill By Night to step into the top spot. They trail by only 0.4 of a point and Carolina is a charmed venue for them, having won the marquee division here in 2018 on their dressage score of 27.9. They improved on that by several points today, scoring a 23.0. (Liz withdrew Deniro Z, who would’ve have been right up in the mix, before dressage due to an abcess. By The Numbers originally had Deniro Z and Blackie ranked #1-2, respectively.)

Liz and “Blackie,” an 18-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding (Radolin x Argentina XII, by Argentinus) owned by Deborah Halliday, are an old married couple who’ve found their niche in the four-star short format — their wins and top finishes at the level are too numerous to list.

“Blackie is 18 this year and he just really enjoys coming to the shows,” Liz says. And, clearly, he keeps getting better and better. Liz says she thought their score today was generous, but that he stepped up in some ways. “I think today he did the best changes he’s ever done.”

Youth is wasted on the young, isn’t it? Liz says she is playing it by ear with Blackie but that he shows no signs of slowing pace. After finishing third to Deniro at Liftmaster Grand Prix Eventing two weeks ago, she says Blackie came out the other side of the event feeling even better than when he started. “It’s fun to still have him out enjoying it.” It’s fun for us to see you two having fun, Liz!

She describes the track as a proper track from Ian (Stark, the course designer) — and make no mistake, they’re not here for a romp in the park. “We’ve come to try to win a prize,” Liz says.

Colleen Rutledge and Covert Rights. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Fun is also the word that Colleen Rutledge uses to describe her ride on Covert Rights, a 15-year-old Thoroughbred cross (BFF Incognito x Let’s Get It Right, by Covert Operation) owned by FSG Inc. and the rider. They’ve been on an incredible ride together with many top finishes, most recently a 5th and 6th in the CCI4-Ss at Great Meadow and Stable View last far. This week at Carolina the pair are third on 27.0. Colleen is also in second in the CCI3*-S with C Me Fly, a 9-year-old Westphalian mare (Cristallo II x Hera, Heraldik XX).

“They’re both great fun to ride — you have to be pleased with them. They both put in solid tests with points still left on the table,” she told EN.

CCI3*-S

Phillip Dutton and Quasi Cool in the CCI3*-S. Brant Gamma Photography Photo.

Phillip Dutton is also leading the CCI3*-S with Quasi Cool, a 10-year-old Holsteiner gelding (Quo Vados x B-Estelle, by Lord) owned by Caroline Moran, and he is 12th in the division with fan favorite OTTB Sea of Clouds.

“I had Erik Duvander helping me for a couple days last week, and it’s been really helpful,” Phillip says. “He just came to our farm and stayed there for a day and a half, so he got to know all of the horses. I think Sea of Clouds was the biggest beneficiary out of all of that. I’m really pleased with him. He did a much better test. I prepared him better than I did in Aiken, so that’s exciting knowing that I can do that with him. Quasi Cool is a cool horse. Hopefully he’s going to be a horse to be reckoned with once he gets up to the 4* and 5* level as well.”

Phillip and Liz Halliday-Sharp are 1-2 in both the CCI4* and the CCI3*-S — in the latter, Liz is second with Cooley Stormwater, an 8-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding (Camillo VDL x Thornfield Calypso) owned by The Stormwater Group. They scored a 27.0.

“I was thrilled with him,” says Liz. “He’s still a young horse, only 8. He tries extremely hard; it was a tidy test and there were no marks lost.” Liz says that he’s a great jumper and that she’s looking forward to cross country.

CCI2*-S

Olivia Dutton and Iniesta in the CCI2*-S. Brant Gamma Photography Photo.

Olivia Dutton leads the way in the CCI2*-S with Iniesta, her own 8-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding (Lordanos x Tilithya, by Voltaire). They lead the CCI2*-S on a score of 28.0. We’ve been rooting this pair on — you can read a sweet story Olivia wrote about their budding partnership here.

“There’s always room for improvement, but Iniesta’s very capable of putting in a good test if I can give him a good warm-up,” Olivia said. “I do love riding him dressage because he’s very naturally talented on the flat. We’ve worked a lot on show jumping this winter, so I’m looking forward to that too; we’ll try to do the best that we can and get a clear round. I’m kind of excited for everything. I love riding him cross country because he doesn’t get strong, and he’s much braver since I’ve gotten him. Hopefully it’ll end up being a good weekend!”

Phillip gave their test a nod of approval as well. “I thought it was good,” he said. “Certainly, he’s got unlimited potential on the flat — just the way he moves and the softness in his gait, and he’s a quiet horse. We’re excited about his future. We’re trying to bring him along gradually and see how far they can get together.”

Hugh Wrigley is 2nd with FE Santos, and Jordan Crabo — daughter of another five-star rider, Barb! — is third with FE Uncle Sam. So exciting to see the next generation of eventing stars rising.

Carolina International CCI & H.T.: WebsiteScheduleRide TimesOrders of GoLive StreamLive ScoresEN’s Coverage

CCI4*-S Dressage Top 10: 

CCI3*-S Dressage Top 10: 

CCI2*-S Dressage Top 10:

Harry Meade Is Back in the Tack

Harry Meade and Tenareze at Luhmühlen in July 2019. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

It’s been a slow road to recovery for 2014 British WEG silver medalist Harry Meade since a fall at Thoresby last October left him with a head injury. His foot got caught in the stirrup, and he was repeatedly kicked in the head by being dragged at a gallop; by the time his foot eventually detached from the stirrup his hat had been badly damaged and kicked free from his head.

Harry is a horseman through and through and has one of the biggest hearts in the sport — even while badly concussed and injured being loaded into the ambulance, in fact, he asked for a message to be sent to the competitors waiting at the start, apologizing for holding them up! — and his resilience has shown through time and time again. We couldn’t be happier to hear that he is back in his happy place, on the back of a horse.

Harry Meade and Superstition in October 2020. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Harry Meade Eventing shared this update on Friday:

“It’s great to see Harry finally back on a horse and feeling good. He twice started riding and twice had to back off, but is now on a consistent path and coping well. It’s been a fairly grim and humbling few months for Harry – unfortunately with a head injury a simple determination to push through is futile – but he’s now the other side of the main difficulties he was faced with.

“Whilst he’s largely recovered and to the outside looks and sounds himself, he’s still limited by his mental stamina. The neural fatigue he has been experiencing is incomparable to any sort of normal tiredness – the brain starts to shut down with very little warning and the only remedy is to go straight to sleep. However, we are thankful that the thinking part of his brain has been unaffected.

“We’re aware that this is a still an ongoing process and improvements will continue over the course of the rest of the year. The great thing is that thanks to the hard work and patience of those involved in his rehab he is back doing what he does best.

“We’re very grateful to our superb team here at Church Farm, our supportive owners and the brilliant professionals who’ve been working with Harry throughout his rehab, and it’s lovely to see all their support paying off.

“The horses are in great shape and Harry’s planning to start at the elite pathway events before and the season proper kicks off properly as planned in early April.”

Go Harry. Go Eventing.

Painted Ponies Art Walk & Auction to Benefit Carolina Horse Park Foundation

“Secretariat” by Tiffany Teeter. Photo courtesy of Carolina Horse Park Foundation.

Painted Ponies are once again roaming the streets of downtown Southern Pines! The second annual Painted Ponies Art Walk and Auction runs through March 30 as 12 five-foot tall fiberglass works of art line Broad Street for all to view as visitors walk the downtown area. After the display is over, the ponies will be auctioned off on Saturday, April 3 from 5 – 6:30 p.m. EST with the proceeds benefiting the Carolina Horse Park Foundation.

This year’s auction will take place both live AND online, hosted by professional auctioneers Ben Ferrell and Matt Newsom. People can register now to bid on their favorite pony! There are also several raffle options and the chance to donate to a ‘Fund A Potty’ campaign to build permanent bathroom facilities at the Park.

Carolina Horse Park is, of course, a preeminent venue on the Area II eventing calendar, with its marquee event Carolina International CCI fast approaching on March 18-21, 2021. Other events throughout the year include its War Horse Event Series, Longleaf Pine H.T. (April 17-18), and Five Points H.T (Aug. 28-29). View a full calendar of horse trials here.

Founded in 1998 as a 501 (c)(3) not-for-profit organization by equestrian enthusiasts, CHP is dedicated to the preservation of open space for equestrian events, as well as educational and recreational purposes. We are grateful for their support of the eventing community, and the Painted Ponies Art Walk and Auction is an opportunity to support them in kind.

“The Sun and Her Flower” by Jenay Jarvis.

“Sergeant Reckless” by Larissa Lycholaj.

“Home of American Golf” by Dan Dreyer.

 

For more information about the Painted Ponies Art Walk and Auction, visit www.CarolinaHorsePark.com.

Marilyn Little & RF Scandalous Repeat History for Red Hills CCI4*-S Win

Sally Spickard contributed to this report.

Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous, winners of the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous repeated history today at Red Hills International, clinching a second wire-to-wire win in the CCI4*-S. After besting the three-star in 2015, they first won the marquee division in 2018 on a score of 36.0. They bettered their margin from that year today by a whopping 13.6 points, finishing on their dressage score of 22.4 — 10+ points ahead of the nearest competition.

The key cross country day departure between 2021 and past years’ editions is that the time today was doable. Historically, Mike Etherington-Smith’s twisty-turny pinball chute of a course has made time faults a near inevitability. The list of riders who have made optimum time in the four-star since 2013, when we began keeping notes, is a very short one:

  • Jacob Fletcher and Atlantic Domino in 2019
  • Whitney Mahloch with Military Mind in 2018
  • Selena O’Hanlon with Foxwood High in 2013 and 2019
  • Selena O’Hanlon and A First Romance in 2013

By comparison, nine horses made the 4*-S time today, with another five adding four or fewer time penalties. Marilyn and “Kitty,” a 16-year-old Oldenburg mare (Carry Gold x Richardia) owned by Jacqueline Mars and Phoebe and Michael Manders, made the time at the level today for their first time ever, crossing the finish two seconds under the optimum time of 6:44. There’s no better momentum-builder than a top result at the first major event of the season as this pair takes aim at Kentucky.

Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous, winners of the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

“Kitty gave me a wonderful feeling on course today,” Marilyn said. “As is expected at Red Hills, the course presented plenty of challenges throughout and was a good combination of substantial fences and combinations with strong technical questions. There was a lot to do, but it was wonderful to feel Kitty so fit, confident, and rideable.”

Marilyn credited a new warm-up routine to get RF Scandalous’ head in the game ahead of cross country, allowing her to set out with the intent to meet her minute markers head on. “Instead of feeling that I needed to protect her from the pace until I was sure she was settled in the task, for the first time I felt able to let our first minute be one of our fastest.”

Expressing gratitude to her team and support crew, Marilyn says it was a key success today in many ways, and she’s “incredibly proud” of RF Scandalous. “Kitty and I owe so much to the many people that allow us the support to continue learning and trying to play the game better.”

Colleen Loach and Qorry Blue D’Argouges finished 2nd in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Show jumping, rather than cross country, proved to be the sorting hat of this year’s four-star field with lots of scoreboard shuffling taking place on Saturday. The second- and third-placed runners up made big moves up the scoreboard from where they began on Friday.

Finishing second is Colleen Loach with Qorry Blue D’Argouges, Peter Barry’s 17-year-old Selle Français gelding (Mr. Blue x Hardie Du Bourg). The pair climbed from 10th after dressage to third after show jumping and bumped up one more spot when previously second-placed Allie Knowles and Ms. Poppins picked up 20 at #13B, the Hammock Table to Skinny Brush.

“He felt great!,” Colleen said. “He’s so dependable on the cross country, you sort of point and shoot. A track like this suits him because he’s easy to turn since he’s not going super fast.” Colleen will now head to The Fork as her last stop before Kentucky.

Leslie Law and Voltaire De Tre finished 3rd in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Rounding out the top three is Leslie Law and Voltaire De Tre, a 12-year-old Selle Français gelding (Gentleman IV x Jasmina Du Fresne) owned by Tre Brook. They started in 15th before moving to fourth and ultimately third.

“He is a horse that is always going to move up,” Leslie Law said. “Although he was 15th he was in a very competitive place, and that’s the main thing, after dressage to have him in a competitive position, because then, if he’s only fractions of points behind the other horses, he’s going to get them in the next two phases.”

The pair was second here at Red Hills in 2020. Leslie attributes Voltaire De Tre’s success to becoming a “real seasoned cross-country horse.”

“He’s an absolute joy to ride cross country,” he says. “Over the years I’ve ridden a lot of horses, in Olympic games, in world championships, in European championships, and I think he has to be one of the best cross country horses I’ve ever ridden.”

Lauren Nicholson and Landmark’s Monte Carlo finished 4th in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Karl Slezak and Fernhill Wishes finished 5th in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Of 25 cross country starters, 18 pairs went clear. Two pairs picked up 20, another two had two refusal, there was one fall and two retirements on-course. Fence #6C, a coffin, proved a sticky spot, as did #11A, a skinny to a drop. Four horses were withdrawn before cross country. An exciting addition to the cross country this year was the addition of 18 frangible jumps across its six levels of courses.

CCI3*-S 

Tamie Smith and Solaguayre California. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Tamie Smith and Solaguayre California, a 10-year-old Argentine Sport Horse/Holsteiner mare (Casparo x Solaguayre Calandria, by Casall) owned by Jullienne Guariglia, also enjoyed a pillar to post win in the CCI3*-S. They finished on a score of 24.1.

“California is an animal cross country,” Tamie said of the mare. “You wouldn’t think so if you watched her warm up but she gets out there and eats up the cross country. Super proud of her.”

Leslie Law held onto second with Lady Chatterly, a 10-year-old Holsteiner mare owned by Jackie and Steve Brown. Sara Kozumplik Murphy was third with Devil Munchkin, her own 13-year-old Dutch Warmblood/Thoroughbred gelding.

Sara Kozumplik Murphy and Devil Munchkin finished 3rd in the CCI3*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Rebecca Brown and Dassett Choice finished 4th in the CCI3*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Rebecca Brown and Dassett Choice finished 4th in the CCI3*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Hannah Sue Burnett and Capitol HIM finished 5th in the CCI3*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

CCI2*-S 

Alyssa Phillips and Cornelius Bo, winners of the CCI2*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Red Hills marks the eighth win in a row for 7-year-old Cornelius Bo, who Alyssa Phillips and her mother imported from Germany in 2019. After taking some time to build a partnership with the gelding, who lives on the spookier side, Alyssa brought him out to test the waters in 2020. Soon enough, he came into his own and discovered his love for the game. This weekend in the CCI2*, Alyssa said, was about confidence.

Alyssa Phillips & Cornelius Bo. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

“I came in and wanted him to have a good go, never having been to Red Hills,” she said. “I knew that he’s never run through the trees or anything and with his spookiness that can be a factor. I wanted to give him a good go on the flat and improve my score from the two-star at Virginia last year. I’ve just been wanting to give him the best go possible to keep him confident and I think he’ll definitely do an Intermediate at some point this year. I’m not trying to push him because he is really talented.”

Alyssa won the Advanced division in 2020 with Oskar.

Lauren Nicholson and I’ll Have Another finished second on 27.6; Caroline Martin and King’s Especiale finished 3rd on 28.4.

Advanced

Jennie Brannigan says the time off in 2020 has helped her shift priorities and rebalance her life — and that extra bit of focus showed this weekend as she takes home the Advanced win with Tim and Nina Gardner’s 11-year-old German Sport Horse FE Lifestyle, also finishing fourth and sixth with Stella Artois and Twilightslastgleam, respectively.

“(FE Lifestyle) was just a champ all weekend,” she said. “He is one of my fastest horses and he really felt good the whole way around. I was thrilled with how (Stella Artois) went; it was probably the nicest round I’ve ever had on her.”

Jennie credits a lot of changes at home — reducing the number of horses in her program, focusing on honing her skills, taking more dressage lessons — with allowing her to add more balance to a lifestyle that used to center around organized chaos.

“I used to thrive on the stress and the chaos, and if I wasn’t going flat-out I wasn’t happy,” she reflected. “I’ve really learned that working harder doesn’t always mean you’re doing better, and so I was all about the break because it gave me the opportunity to redo my life a little.”

Jennie spent massive amounts of time learning from Erik Duvander and James Burtwell, and says the extra focus on the flat has her feeling that much more prepared to take on a season that will see her return to Kentucky — and the five-star level — for the first time since 2015.

Maya Black finished second with Miks Master C on 33.1, followed by Liz Halliday-Sharp and Cooley Moonshine on 35.2.

Elsewhere on the horse trials scoreboard, Katie Malensek and Landjaeger, her own 7 year old Oldenburg gelding, won Open Intermediate; Hannah Sue Burnett and Coolrock Wacko Jacko, Christa Schmidt’s 12-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding, won Open Preliminary; and Sallie Johnson and Fernhill DiCaprio, her own 7-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding, won Preliminary Rider.

Red Hills International: WebsiteResultsCourse MapsEN’s Coverage

CCI4*-S Final Top 10: 

CCI3*-S Final Top 10:

CCI2*-S Final Top 10:

Advanced Final Top 10:

Sunday Links

It’s another unorthodox Covid-19 edition of Red Hills Horse Trials and no doubt the big spectator-friendly atmosphere is sorely missed. But as always we appreciate everyone doing their part to stay safe out there until the virus in fully in the rearview. This past year has been a long road but with each passing day it seems to get a little bit brighter.

U.S. Weekend Action:

Red Hills International H.T.: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores] [EN’s Coverage] [EHV-1 Precautions]

Copper Meadows H.T.: [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores] [EHV-1 Precautions]

Full Gallop Farm H.T.: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

MeadowCreek Park Spring Social Event: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Links: 

Cleaning Horse Feed Buckets: When, How, and Why? – The Horse

The Healing Power of Rest – The Plaid Horse Magazine

Practical Horseman Podcast Transcript: Tim Bourke

Red Hills Boasts 18 Frangible Fences for Cross-Country Course

Appendix 3 Rule Change Proposal Tabled Until 2023 Competition Season

Calling all Cambox helmet cam users! Did you pick up a new Cambox during their Black Friday sale last year? Are you a huge fan of snapping on your helmet cam for a cross country run? We’d love to feature your helmet cam video right here on EN! If you use a Cambox Isi3 or V4, we want to hear from you! Please email [email protected] with your video link and description.

Video: “Now it hits different. When I’m on a horse I just feel free.” #TripleAmputeeEventer Jessica Thoma continues to inspire us with her determination and positivity.

Mind the Moss! Red Hills CCI4*-S Cross Country Course Preview

Good morning from cross country Sunday at Red Hills International Horse Trials! For many horses this is their first big ask of the season, and as usual course designers Mike Etherington-Smith and David O’Connor have assembled a stout set of questions to be pondered and hopefully answered correctly. Here is the link to Cross Country App’s presentation of courses for all the levels, including a virtual guided course walk with Mike for the CCI4*-S and Advanced tracks. Many thanks to Shems Hamilton for the photos.

The 2021 edition marks Mike’s seventh year as designer of the CCI4* track, with credit to builders Tyson Rementer and Levi Ryckewaert for creating a course that melds seamlessly with the Florida landscape. The pandemic has necessitated a departure from the usual protocol, though, as Mike explains:

“It was somewhat surreal having a facetime call with David, Tyson, and Levi setting the fences for this year’s 4* and Advanced course whilst sitting back here in the UK. I admit to a twinge of sadness at not being able to get to the event this year but things should be very different in 12 months time as we head back to normality.

“Fortunately, I am very familiar with the venue and can come up with plans for the courses without having to make a pre-visit even though it is obviously not quite the same and I wouldn’t want to do it like this every year. Nevertheless, I have complete faith in the team to produce the courses that everyone wants at this time of year: to ensure that the distances are correct, the lines work, and the small but significant final adjustments, for example, the cutting and shaping of the brush and the angles, are what they should be.

“A few changes have been made but the course still runs right handed as last year. This way round has a good feel to it and seems to flow better than going left handed. Having no sponsor tent opens up other options towards the end of the course where the last combination will be and this may even remain an option going forward.

“The change to running the cross country last for all classes will hopefully prove popular, there is no question that competitors prefer this for short format classes.

“Much work continues to be done on the footing, which I am told looks the best it has ever has and is a great credit to all involved. Credit also needs to go to Jane and Marvin and their excellent team for managing to put the event together in tough circumstances. Running events is like walking a financial tightrope, something I know only too well having run events for 30+ years, and so hopefully their efforts will be justly rewarded – the sport needs a variety of good events.

“My thanks as always to Tyson and Levi for their course building skills, Corinne and her team for all the fence dressing, to the team from the City Parks Department who look after the venue throughout the year, and to David who, in my absence, has very kindly set the fences on my courses.

“As always, I hope that everyone has a good time, that the courses ride well, and that this provides the good early season run that athletes and horses want. I shall be watching from afar and look forward to the feedback.”

Red Hills International: WebsiteRide TimesScheduleLive ScoresCourse MapsEN’s CoverageEN’s InstagramEN’s Twitter

Who Jumped It Best? Twin Rivers Part 3: Advanced Frangible Table

We’ve been showing off Twin Rivers’ gorgeous new frangible tables from the event earlier this month, courtesy of photo extraordinaire Sherry Stewart. If you haven’t already renewed your USEA membership for this year, be sure to drop some coins in the bucket for the USEA’s Frangible Fence Technology Fund which provides grants for frangibles across the country.

We featured Prelim in Part I, Intermediate in Part II, and now we’re putting the Advanced division to a friendly poll: Who Jumped It Best? Check ’em out and vote in the poll below. Helen Alliston and Ebay were the winners of the division — you can view complete results from the event here.

Auburn Excell Brady & BSP Tuxedo. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Marc Grandia & Compari FFF. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Emilee Libby & Jakobi. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Amber Levine & Cinzano. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Andrea Baxter & Laguna Seca. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Erin Kellerhouse & Woodford Reserve. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Helen Alliston & Ebay. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Chloe Smyth & Stag Party. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Madison Temkin & Dr. Hart. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

James Alliston & Paper Jam. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Lauren LoPiccolo & Diego. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Rebecca Braitling & Caravaggio II. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Red Hills Dressage Round-Up: Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous Dance to CCI4*-S Lead

Red Hills International is underway in Tallahassee, Florida! No spectators are permitted and there is no live stream, but you can keep an eye on EN for all the latest. Red Hills continues with show jumping on Saturday followed by cross country on Sunday. Here is your Friday dressage recap.

CCI4*-S

Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous lead the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Marilyn Little and RF Scandalous, a 16-year-old Oldenburg mare (Carry Gold x Richardia) owned by Jacqueline Mars and Phoebe and Michael Manders, owned the 4*-S sandbox at Red Hills on Friday. The pair scored a 22.4, putting them ahead of second-positioned Tamie Smith who scored 26.6 with En Vogue. In third is Lauren Nicholson with Landmark’s Monte Carlo on 30.0, rounding out a nearly eight-point spread across the top three in the 29-horse field judged by Peter Gray and Jane Hamlin.

“I am so excited for the weekend and so appreciative of the chance to be here with ‘Kitty’ — especially given all that is happening in the world right now!,” Marilyn says. “I cannot be anything other than thrilled with her today. Although the score didn’t necessarily reflect it, she gave me one of the best feelings in the test that she ever has — any mistakes were mine. It’s hard to imagine but even at her age she feels better and better with each competition.”

Red Hills has been a charmed venue for Marilyn and Kitty in the past. They won the four-star here in 2018 and the three-star in 2015, and EN’s “By the Numbers” has the pair earmarked for another victory here this year.

“Last season was disappointing for so many reasons, but ups and downs are part of sports, horses, and life. We have been so lucky to enjoy so many wonderful moments together over the years. I believe there are a few more big ones coming, but perseverance seems to be an interesting combination of ‘getting back in the saddle’ and ‘waiting your turn.’ Like a great sportswoman, Kitty shows up and doesn’t let a disappointment keep her down, she just tries harder the next time. It’s wonderful to feel her step out this season better than she has ever felt, ready to take on whatever comes next. We’re enjoying every minute of it.”

Tamie Smith and En Vogue are 2nd in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Lauren Nicholson and Landmark’s Monte Carlo are 3rd in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Anna Loschiavo and Spartacus Q are tied for 4th in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Clayton Fredericks and FE Coldplay are 4th in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Alexandra Knowles and Ms. Poppins are tied for 7th in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Nilson Da Silva and Rock Phantom are tied for 7th in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Karl Slezak and Fernhill Wishes are tied for 7th in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Colleen Loach and Qorry Blue D’Argouges are 10th in the CCI4*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

CCI3*-S

Tamie Smith and Solaguayre California lead the CCI3*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Tamra Smith and Solaguayre California, a 10-year-old Argentine Sport Horse/Holsteiner mare (Casparo x Solaguayre Calandria, by Casall) owned by David and Julianne Guariglia, scored an incredible 20.1 in the CCI3*-S dressage to lead the division heading into jumping.

This pair won the CCI3*-S at Woodside and were 2nd in the CCI3*-S at Twin Rivers last fall, but their Red Hills test was a personal best score. “California was amazing!” Tamie says. “Not certain I could have had any better of a test. She’s so much stronger now and feeling very obedient.”

Tamie thinks the mare will handle east coast terrain well. “She’s an animal on cross country,” she says.

In second is Leslie Law with Lady Chatterly on a score of 25.5. Kurt Martin and D.A. Lifetime scored a 25.8 to sit third in the 37-horse field.

Leslie Law and Lady Chatterley are 2nd in the CCI3*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Kurt Martin and D.A. Lifetime are 3rd in the CCI3*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Liz Halliday-Sharp and Cooley HHS Calmaria are 4th in the CCI3*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Sara Kozumplik Murphy and Devil Munchkin are 5th in the CCI3*-S. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Advanced

Jennie Brannigan leads the Advanced division on 30.2 with FE Lifestyle, an 11-y/o DSP gelding (Leo von Faelz x Berina A, by Brandenburger) owned by Nina and Tim Gardner.

“He’s leading — something I don’t think I’ve ever been able to say!,” Jennie says. “He’s always been really talented, he won the dressage at the AECs in the Intermediate. He’s going through some trials and tribulations with the flat — Erik really helped me crack down during Covid last year. He sat on him and has really helped turn that horse around. He’s really a lovely horse with a ton of ability. I was really happy with how he went at his 4* debut at Tryon. He’s one of the nicest cross country horses I’ve ever ridden, he’s naturally built for that and finds cross country quite, knock on wood, natural. So we plan to take him to Kentucky.”

Jennie is also fourth on Twilightslastgleam. “He’s a little Thoroughbred that Tim and Nina bred and went to the track and never actually ran. He also has a lot of physical things that he overcomes in order to do his job. I always get a bit of a chuckle when he does quite well on the flat, to have him sitting right behind Alyssa’s and Liz’s horses — good job little Thoroughbred! Erik just encourages me to keep ticking away and having someone like that believe in you and put in a lot of time is extremely helpful.”

And she’s sixth on Stella Artois. “We tried a double bridle today for the first time, and even with a loop in the curb rein I don’t think she liked it. The quality of the work was quite good but I felt she was a little fussy. James Burtwell has also helped me so much with my flatwork and we just wanted to give it a try.

“Stella has done five 4*s and she was very good at Tryon and will go to Kentucky along with FE Lifestyle. Cambalda was such a great 4* horse but 5* was a bit beyond his scope. These horses really feel like their strengths are in the long format.

“This is the first outing of the year for FE Lifestyle and Stella. I had talked to Erik and we weren’t going to run much going into Kentucky. So I’m pleased that for the first time out they were good. I don’t run the FEI here because I don’t want to be tempted to run fast on cross country if they go well on the flat. When I’m in FEI I want to go for the rockets and that’s not what this weekend is about.

“I’m just really pleased for the Gardners to have such a nice set of horses moving up to the top now. They’ve been incredible supporters of mine and of the sport.”

More sights and sounds from Red Hills:

Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

CCI4*-S Top 10 After Dressage:

CCI3*-S Top 10 After Dressage:

CCI2*-S Top 10 After Dressage:

Advanced After Dressage: 

Red Hills International: WebsiteRide TimesScheduleLive Scores, Course MapsEN’s CoverageEN’s InstagramEN’s Twitter