Category Archives: South Florida News

2019 Challenge of the Americas

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Show Support for your Favorite Team!
Want to show your support for your favorite team? Click here to go to the Play for P.I.N.K. donation page. When you see the area where you fill in the event you would like to support, type in “COTA 2019: (your favorite team).” Team choices include Team Gardy Bloemers, Team Hylofit, Team MatchNRide, Team Purina or Team Winged Foot. You can choose any amount you’d like and we’ll report the outcome. It’s that simple!
Acclaimed as
the
Best Yet!
We did it! All of us . . .we did it again! And it was bigger, better and even more spectacular than ever. The quadrille teams stepped up their performances (if that’s even possible) and put on a show that thrilled the 500 VIP guests and the sold-out General Admission grandstands packed to capacity with an enthusiastic, and constantly clapping, crowd.
If you weren’t able to attend in person, we hope you caught the amazing live stream provided by Chronicle TV. If not, it’s still available online. The Spectator Judging App, sponsored by IDA Development, was a great success with spectators and fans from around the world voting for their favorite teams.
During the pre-event exhibitions, we enjoyed the upbeat music and jumping quadrille performed beautifully by the first family of jumping, Millar Brooke Farm, with riders Charlotte McLaughlin, Amy Millar, Jonathon Millar and Kelly Soleau-Millar. And we laughed at the delightful skit by Shining Moments, performed by Jordan Osborne and Londyn Pachota, participants in Lendon Gray’s Winter Intensive Training program. That pony really had all the moves and Tigger Montague and Pati Pierucci were hilarious commentators!
Thank you to the Challenge team sponsors: Gardy Bloemers/Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, Hylofit, MatchNRide, Purina, and Winged Foot Enterprises. As team sponsors, you make it possible for us to continue our fight against breast cancer.
Thanks to Cunningham & Cunningham Livestock Insurance for protecting the COTA benefit with the best insurance coverage possible and, to our media partner, the United States Dressage Federation, for partnering with us to for helping us spread the word and challenge breast cancer. BioStarUS and its owner, Tigger Montague, went above and beyond to make the evening a rousing success and Back On Track came through again as a valued supporter.
We are so grateful to the Pink Patrons: Florida Atlantic University Schmidt College of Medicine, IDA Farm, Lark’s Home Run and Oak Meadows Farm. Thank you Partners for P.I.N.K. AmFund, EquiJet, Summit Performance, Susan J. Stickle Photography, The Horse Of Course, The Tackeria and Van Dell Jewelers.
The COTA Committee was in overdrive for months before the event to ensure a fabulous evening. Thank you Paula Beauchesne, Sophie Ghedin, Eileen Johnston, Terri Kane, Ilona Klimek, Randy Leoni, Mary Ross, Alex Rozboril, Elizabeth Stauber-Johnson, Cathy Tarantini, Sue Weakley, Barbara Wolff, Kim York and Lily Zilo. And we must not forget the volunteers, a special group of individuals who provided invaluable assistance by keeping on-site operations running smoothly throughout the evening’s festivities.
There are so many unsung heroes who donated their time and money to this event and we can never thank you enough for your support.
And how about those riders? These accomplished athletes and their talented horses gave their all. For two months, each team of riders met every week without fail to practice their routines. Together with the talented choreographers and coaches, they developed, planned and perfected their fabulous performances and made March 8 an evening to remember.
Holland-based Team MatchNRide performed via jumbotron for us with their military- themed quadrille choreographed by Marieke Verdonk. The team even traveled from Holland to Wellington again this year to join in the evening’s festivities. We can’t wait to see what they come up with next year!
When Team Hylofit came in to the arena, the entire audience thought they were riding Clydesdales and there were whispers from the crowd that they had never seen draft horses move like that. The costume details were half-time worthy. Now we all want a dressage draft horse! Thank you for bringing in fresh ideas and thanks to choreographer and rider Melissa MacLaren Velix, riders Meagan Davis, Heidi Degele, Nicholas Hansen, Molly Paris, Caleb Scroggins and Hylofit’s Secret Weapon, Jacquie Brooks.
Team Purina – you took us back in time with the best music of the 70s. The audience was singing and clapping along with the team’s precise performance. Thanks for providing the moon glow as Jupiter aligned with Mars at the Global Dressage Festival Stadium. We loved the peace sign halt and salute! Thank you, too, choreographer and coach Terry Ciotti Gallo along with coach Bill Warren and riders Pamela Goodrich, Bent Jensen, Olivia LaGoy-Weltz, Kasey Perry-Glass, Betsy Steiner and George Williams.
Once again, Team Winged Foot wowed us with their signature rider jacket designs that punctuated their elegant attire and, this year, they spelled out “FIND A CURE.” The audience loved figuring it out as they wove though their intricate choreography set to the rousing (and singable!) music of Queen. Thank you choreographer and coach Ruth Hogan-Poulsen and coach Susanne Hamilton along with riders Marco Bernal, Raúl Corchuelo, Shannon Dueck, Bridget Hay, Yvonne Losos de Muñiz and Ilse Schwarz.
The last team to go, Team Gardy Bloemers, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, blew the audience away with their daring and creative choreography by Tigger Montague and music from “Pirates of the Caribbean.” Decked out in full costume, Jack Sparrow (aka James Koford), along with pirates and wenches Lauren Chumley, Rebecca Cowden, Allison Kavey, Betsy Van Dyke and Noel Williams performed thread-the-needle canter half-pass sequences that were thrilling and brought the audience to their feet. Congratulations Team Gardy Bloemers, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management for winning the 2019 Challenge of the Americas quadrille competition!
As we bask in the afterglow of the 2019 Challenge of the Americas, the teams are already discussing their strategies and we are planning to continue the fight to #challengebreastcancer and help find a for a cure for breast cancer in 2020. We can’t wait to see you there!

Carl Hester Named as Premier Equestrian During Adequan® Global Dressage Festival CDI 5*

Wellington, FL (February 18, 2019)Gold Medal Olympian, Carl Hester, says his secret to winning is all about keeping his horses happy. This is why he has been named as a Premier Equestrian during Week 5 of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival CDI (AGDF).  “I find it totally normal to keep horses in a way that they’re happy,” says Hester, “They’re turned out a lot, we hack a lot, and we only school four days a week at home.”  He adds, “We’re seeing this more and more with Dressage horses having a chance to have a break and stretch their legs and go out to roll and have fun.” Hester continues, “It’s a sport and it’s tough and they go through a lot of training, so it’s lovely to know that they have some down time as well. A horse, of course, wants to be a horse!” he smiles.
It’s Hester’s exemplary character that Premier Equestrian – an industry leader in manufacturing world-class footing, dressage arenas and accessories, values and wishes to recognize through the Premier Equestrian Award. As a part of being named a Premier Equestrian, Hester was presented with a striking tricolor ribbon and engraved Premier Equestrian Award commemorative plaque during the AGDF in Wellington, Florida.  “I’m flattered for the award,” Hester smiles, “Thank you!”
Hester was raised in the UK on the tiny Channel island of Sark.  The island has no cars, and so horses are very much part of lifestyle. At 19 Hester had no ambition or aspirations, but with no jobs on Sark and winter coming, he decided to apply for a job with horses on the mainland. Through an advertisement in Horse and Hound, he arrived at the Fortune Centre in Hampshire, where adults with learning and physical disabilities are given a sense of freedom and achievement through riding. It was there Hester had his first opportunity to compete and it was on the Fortune Centre’s skewbald mare, Jolly Dolly, that Hester won the 1985 Young Dressage Rider Championship.
Hester’s career took the most dramatic turn when Dr Bechtolsheimer approached him to join his yard as a rider. “I was totally overawed at the interview; I had never seen a yard like it or horses of this caliber. When Dr B asked me how much I would want, I said nothing! To ride the horses would be enough!” he continues, “I remember Dr B smiling and saying how does £XX a week and a cottage sound.  I thought all my birthdays had come at once!”
This part of Hester’s career is well documented but it is sufficient to say that he feels a lasting fondness and debt to Dr and Mrs B who literally gave him the chance of a lifetime.” I rode and trained with Dr B for three and a half years and in 1990 went to the World Championships on Rubelit von Unkenriff, the European Championships in 1991 and in 1992 the Barcelona Olympics on Georgioni. I was the youngest British rider to ever compete in an Olympic Games. It was the most amazing thing that had ever happened to me, and a period that changed the course of my life.” From there, Hester went on to win the gold medal in the 2012 London Olympics and a silver medal from the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, and he continues to be a shining star on the Great Britain Team.
Today, Hester considers himself fortunate for the opportunity to come to the US each year to help and train with his long-time friend, Katherine Bateson during the winter season in Wellington.  Back in the UK, he and his team are also training for the European Championships coming up this year in Rotterdam. “This will be quite fun for us,” Hester explains, “because it was last time in Rotterdam, in 2011, when the GB Team won our first gold medal,” he continues, “We’re really looking forward to going back this year and seeing what we can do.  Holland is a great place to have the European Championships, and Rotterdam is exciting,” he adds.  Hester goes on to say that they also have the Olympics in mind for next year, and he’s looking forward to what the future holds. “We make a gold medal team, and now we’re getting gold medal facilities, and great shows” he says about life in the UK, “So, it’s a wonderful place to start producing great horses for the future!”
Premier Equestrian wishes for all disciplines of equestrians and horse lovers to have enjoyable experiences with their horses, in or outside the show ring. The company is proud to offer an affordable choice for first-rate American-made products that enhance the equestrian performance of its customers. For more information about Premier Equestrian and its full line of products including footing, dressage arenas, and arena groomers, please call 1-800-611-6109 or visit www.PremierEquestrian.com.
Photo: Carl Hester receives the Premier Equestrian Award  at the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival CDI 5*- JRPR’s Joann Weiber presenting

Katie Johnson and Paxton Qualify for Iron Spring Farm Future Stars Performance Series Final at Week 6 of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival 

Wellington, FL – February 16, 2019 – The sixth week of the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) featured National competition with a riders and horses in a variety of divisions on February 15-16. CDI Competition will resume for Week 7 on February 21 and will feature the “Friday Night Stars” FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI-W, presented by Helgstrand Dressage on Friday, February 22.
Katie Johnson (USA) and Paxton won the USEF Developing Prix St. Georges, presented by Vita Flex, with a score of 69.438%. The pair are now the first from the United States qualified for the Iron Spring Farm Future Stars Performance Series Final in Week 12 of AGDF. “I was very happy with my ride. He’s still really green at the Prix St. Georges level,” said Johnson about her partner, a 2011 Westphalian gelding by Dante Weltino owned by Kylee Lourie.
Katie Johnson and Paxton. ©SusanStickle.com
“I would say the highlight of our ride was our trot work. He really excelled there. His rideability has been progressing every day, and I’m happy with that. I’m hoping to ride in the final in Week 12, and am excited about the opportunity,” continued Johnson. “It’s good to have something to look forward to. I would like to do the USEF Developing Prix St. Georges at Lamplight and would love to get him in one CDI by the end of season.”
Johnson is extremely thankful to Kylee Lourie, Paxton’s owner, and to her trainer Adrienne Lyle and said, “None of it would be able to happen without both of them, so that’s very important to me.”
Melissa Vaughn (USA) and Belrano Gold, a 2011 Oldenburg gelding by Bellissimo M owned by Pferdes LLC, started off the morning on Saturday with a win in the Open section of the Fourth Level, Test 1. The pair earned a score of 70.513%. Linda Graves and De Ja Vu 2, her 2005 Oldenburg gelding by Dimaggio, won the Adult Amateur section with a score of 65.128%.
Linda Graves and De Ja Vu 2. ©SusanStickle.com
Roxanne Trunnell (USA) and Dolton, a 2012 Hanoverian gelding by Danone I, rode a strong Para I Test, and won the Para Equestrian Test of Choice class with a score of 72.143%.
Roxanne Trunnell and Dolton. ©SusanStickle.com
Christilot Boylen (CAN) and Rocky Lane, a 2006 Westphalian gelding by Rock Forever owned by Rebecca Stromatt, concluded the day with a win in the Open FEI Grand Prix*, presented by Wellington Equestrian Realty. The pair earned a score of 66.739%. Carrie Schopf (ARM) and Saumur won the Adult Amateur section, presented by Harmony Sport Horses, with a score of 65.128%.
Christilot Boylen and Rocky Lane. ©SusanStickle.com
International competition at AGDF will resume for Week 7 from February 20-24, and features CDI-W and CDI 3* dressage competition. Helgstand Dressage will present the “Friday Night Stars” FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI-W on Friday, February 22. For more information, please visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.
Photo credit: ©SusanStickle.com. These images may only be used in relation to this press release and with credit.

Ashley Holzer and Valentine Conclude Week 5 at Adequan® Global Dressage Festival With Win in FEI Intermediate I Freestyle CDI3*

Wellington, FL – February 10, 2019 – Week 5 of the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) concluded on Sunday, February 10, with a win for Ashley Holzer (USA) and Valentine in the FEI Intermediate I Freestyle CDI3*, presented by Fair Sky Farm. AGDF continues on February 15-17 with national competition and on February 20-24 with AGDF 7 CDI-W competition.
Ashley Holzer and Valentine in their winning freestyle test for the FEI Intermediate I Freestyle CDI3*, presented by Fair Sky Farm.©SusanStickle.com
Holzer had the last ride of the day and just barely slid into first place with a score of 76.917%, ahead of Tina Irwin (CAN) and Laurencio who earned a score of 76.750%.
“I think my mare had a very tricky warm-up. She was so tense in the warm-up because she’s never done a freestyle before with the music,” commented Holzer about her first freestyle ever with her nine-year-old Oldenburg mare by Sir Donnerhall. “We actually had to run and grab a bonnet because she was unfortunately upset by the noise.
“What is amazing to me is that I trot off, and right away she is looking, she’s attentive, but she’s so trying her very hardest,” continued Holzer. “When I’m in that trot tour I feel like I’m floating. She floats through the trot tour without hardly any aid whatsoever. So I think for me, sort of feeling a horse dance underneath you like that so easily, that’s a thrill no matter what class you’re in.”
Holzer made a last-minute change to her music and choreography choice, and luckily her student Brittany Fraser had kept Holzer’s Olympic partner Pop Art’s freestyle from 2004.
Holzer said, “I had a bit of a different pattern with different music, which we realized was too bold. So luckily Brittany is quite a hoarder, and she actually found my Pop Art small tour freestyle from 2004 and brought it. It’s got a nice flowing trot tour, and I rode Poppy’s 2004 freestyle!”
Ashley Holzer in her winning presentation with Judge at C Janet Lee Foy, and Lisa Goretta, FEI Chief Steward. ©SusanStickle.com
Earlier in the day in the FEI Young Rider Freestyle CDIY NAYC/USEF Qualifier, Benjamin Ebeling (USA) and Illuster Van De Kampert, a 11-year-old Belgian Warmblood gelding by Spielberg owned by Nuvolari Holdings LLC, won with a score of 72.825%.
Benjamin Ebeling and Illuster Van De Kampert in their winning ride in the FEI Young Rider Freestyle CDIY NAYC/USEF Qualifier. ©SusanStickle.com
Second place went to Caroline Nicholson (USA) and Diozar, her 11-year-old KWPN gelding by Jazz. The pair earned a score of 70.925%.
Vanessa Creech-Terauds and Fleur de Lis L, a 10-year-old Hanoverian, by First Dance and Louise Leatherdale, earned a score of 70.400% to come in third place.
Benjamin Ebeling in his winning presentation with Judge at C Gotthilf Riexinger. ©SusanStickle.com
International competition at AGDF will resume for Week 7 from February 20-24, and features CDI-W and CDI 3* dressage competition. Helgstand Dressage will present the “Friday Night Stars” Grand Prix Freestyle CDI-W on Friday, February 22. For more information and to see a full list of results, please visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.
Final Results: FEI Intermediate I Freestyle CDI3*, presented by Fair Sky Farm
Place, Rider, Nationality, Horse, Horse Information: Judge H% – Stephen Clarke, Judge C% – Janet Lee Foy, Judge B% – Claudia Thaler, Total %
1.Ashley Holzer (USA), Valentine, nine-year-old Oldenburg mare by Sir Donnerhall x Renaissance owned by Ashley Holzer: 78.250%, 76.750%, 75.750%, 76.917%
2.Tina Irwin (CAN), Laurencio, 12-year-old Oldenburg gelding by Laurentio x Pasadena owned by Tina Irwin: 80.6250%, 76.000%, 73.625%, 76.750%
3.Leida Collins-Strijk (NED), Fellini, 9-year-old KWPN gelding by Ampere x Anouk owned by Leida Collins-Strijk: 73.500%, 73.125%, 71.875%, 72.833%
4.Belinda Trussell (CAN), Carlucci, 14-year-old Hanoverian gelding by Contendro I x Christin owned by Barbara Holden Sinclair: 74.625%, 71.750%, 70.750%, 72.375%
5.Michael Klimke (GER), Harmony’s Sanrino RHP, 10-year-old Oldenburg gelding by San Remo x Feldhit II owned by Harmony Sporthoses: 71.625%, 72.375%, 68.250%, 70.750%
6.Leif Aho (USA), Classy Sinclair, 12-year-old Oldenburg gelding by Sir Sinclair x Sacro Santa owned by Lisa Grossi: 71.500%, 68.750%, 70.750%, 70.333%
Photo credit: ©SusanStickle.com. These images may only be used in relation to this press release and with credit.

P.J. Rizvi and Breaking Dawn Dazzle in Their Second Win of AGDF Week 5 

Wellington, FL – February 9, 2019 – Week 5 of the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) continued on Saturday, February 9, with three-star dressage competition at the Equestrian Village at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL. P.J. Rizvi (USA) and Breaking Dawn concluded the day with a win in the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI3*, presented by Wellington Equestrian Realty.
P.J. Rizvi and Breaking Dawn in their winning ride in the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI3*, presented by Wellington Equestrian Realty. ©SusanStickle.com
Rizvi, of Wellington, FL, and Breaking Dawn earned a score of 74.030% with their freestyle test. “I’ve had him since he was nine, turning 10. I purchased him as an amateur Prix St. Georges horse,” said Rizvi of her 18-year-old KWPN gelding by Akribori. “He’s been my horse of a lifetime; I got to learn everything on him. I got really lucky.
“He knows his job. It’s really about keeping him fit and happy and taking good care of him because he is in the older bracket for a grand prix horse, but he always comes out willing to do something,” continued Rizvi. “Today he came out like, ‘Yep I’m 12!’ We always say at the barn, he is 18 going on five because he doesn’t know how old he is, and that’s what I love about him.”
Michael Erdmann put together the music for Rizvi’s freestyle, and trainer Ashley Holzer and Rizvi put the choreography together. “I wanted to do more of American Pie because I figure, everyone goes out and rides for different reasons and I always do my best, but I do it really for the fun and for the joy of it,” added Rizvi about her music choice.
P.J. Rizvi in her winning presentation with Allyn Mann of Adequan®, Judge at C Katrina Wuest, and Craig Martin of Wellington Equestrian Realty. ©SusanStickle.com
Adrienne Lyle (USA) returned after her two wins yesterday to capture another one in the FEI Grand Prix Special CDI3*, presented by MTICA Farm. Lyle rode Harmony’s Duval, an 11-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding by Rosseau owned by Duval Partners LLC, and the pair earned a score of 72.851%.
Adrienne Lyle and Harmony’s Duval in their winning ride in the FEI Grand Prix Special CDI3*, presented by MTICA Farm. ©SusanStickle.com
Susan Pape (GBR) and Harmony’s Don Noblesse, a 12-year-old Hanoverian stallion by Dancier owned by Harmony Sporthorses, came in second place with a score of 72.213%.
Third place went to Jill Irving (CAN) and Arthur, her 14-year-old KWPN gelding by Jazz. The pair earned a score of 70.064%.
Adrienne Lyle in her winning presentation with Allyn Mann of Adequan®, Judge at C Michael Osinski, and Lisa Goretta, FEI Chief Steward. ©SusanStickle.com
Earlier in the day Leida Collins-Strijk (NED) and Romy, a 13-year-old Hanoverian gelding by Royal Blend owned by Arlene Page, earned a score of 72.016% to win the FEI Intermediate I CDI1*, presented by Iron Spring Farm.
Leida Collins-Strijk (NED) and Romy in their winning ride in the FEI Intermediate I CDI1*, presented by Iron Spring Farm. ©SusanStickle.com
Week 5 competition at AGDF will conclude on Sunday, February 10, and features the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle 16-25 and the FEI Intermediate I Freestyle CDI 3*, presented by Fair Sky Farm. Competition will resume for Week 7 from February 20-24. For more information and to see a full list of results, please visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.
Final Results: FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI3*, presented by Wellington
Equestrian Realty
Place, Rider, Nationality, Horse, Horse Information: Judge E% – Janet Lee Foy, Judge H% – Claudia Thaler, Judge C% – Katrina Wuest, Judge M% – Stephen Clarke, Judge B% – Elisabeth Max-Theurer, Total %
1. P.J. Rizvi (USA), Breaking Dawn, 18-year-old KWPN gelding by Akribori x Eveline owned by P.J. Rizvi: 72.700%, 74.500%, 75.750%, 76.075%, 71.125%, 74.030%
2. James Koford (USA), Adiah HP, 12-year-old Friesian Cross mare by Nico x Marije Ant owned by Sherry Koella: 68.750%, 70.350%, 69.800%, 67.400%, 73.700%, 70.000%
3. Jacqueline MacDonald (USA), Malcarat, 15-year-old PRE gelding by Ordagov x Peciosa XLLL owned by Emerald Oaks Farm: 66.750%, 70.850%, 64.850%, 66.175%, 66.575%, 67.040%
4. Debbie Hill (USA), Cartier, 12-year-old KWPN gelding owned by Robbie Rice: 66.500%, 67.750%, 63.725%, 66.525%, 69.375%, 66.775%
5. Devon Kane (USA), Destiny, 16-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding by Diamond Hit x Midt-West Regina owned by Diamante Farms: 63.875%, 64.450%, 69.925%, 67.250%, 66.975%, 66.495%
Photo credit: ©SusanStickle.com. These images may only be used in relation to this press release and with credit.

Omega Alpha Healthy Horse Award Goes to  Lusitano Stallion Hobbit Interagro and Rider Tiago Ernesto During  Week Three of 2019 Adequan® Global Dressage Festival  

Wellington, FL (February 4, 2019) — After recently mastering 3rd Level Test 3 in Region 9, Tiago Ernesto, the head trainer of Haras Dos Cavalieros, now has his sights set on a successful season in Florida competing in Prix St Georges with the gorgeous Lusitano stallion, Hobbit Interagro.  The jaw-dropping 7 year old stallion was the picture of health during Week Three of the 2019 Adequan Global Dressage Festival (AGDF), and his display of equine fitness and athleticism resulted in Ernesto being honored by winning the Omega Alpha Healthy Horse Award.
Omega Alpha feels it is important to honor riders and trainers, like Ernesto, who make great health a top priority for their horses.  Ernesto describes his role at Haras Dos Cavalieros, located in Houston, TX as having a strong focus on keeping all of their horses healthy and happy on the inside and out.  The farm is one of the biggest breeders of Lusitano horses in the nation.  With 30 mares that they breed every year to stallions that they own, and also to stallions in Portugal through AI, Haras Dos Cavalieros must make a priority of maintaining optimal health in all their horses to ensure the best Lusitano foals are brought into the US market.  “Our goal is to introduce more Lusitanos into the marketplace,” Ernesto explains, “and also to take the Lusitanos as far as we can in competition.”  In addition to the focus on dressage, Ernesto also trains and competes his horses in working equitation.  He describes this discipline as being very mentally stimulating for both horse and rider, which helps the horses formulate a good attitude and a great work ethic.  Working equitation involves skills such as going through an obstacle course without being affected by the many distractions that are a part of the test. The Lusitano breed is exceptional in this arena because of their historic roots and genetics producing the horses of today with very courageous hearts and minds.  Ernesto is excited to be able to demonstrate this courage with his horses in the dressage ring throughout the season in Wellington. Haras Dos Cavaleiros has brought 10 horses from their ranch in Texas that they are showing in Florida for the duration of the circuit.  Omega Alpha shares these same feelings about being proud of the horses’ well being and, in turn, horses’ performance. Therefore, it is important to them to honor owners and trainers, like Ernesto, who make great health a top priority for their horses. The Healthy Horse Award includes an assortment of popular Omega Alpha health products, a cooler, and a commemorative ribbon.
Ernesto is excited to use Omega Alpha products. With all natural ingredients like marshmallow root, slippery elm, licorice root, and ginger root, the assortment of Omega Alpha products will help the horses of Haras Dos Cavaleiros maintain a level of optimum health so they can perform their best this season.
In addition to recognizing horses in optimum health, Omega Alpha offers an extensive line of all-natural products for humans and other animals as well. Clients everywhere have experienced the benefits of Omega Alpha to help improve and maintain respiration, digestion, joint health, hormonal balance, immune health, detoxification, muscle rehabilitation, endurance, and performance. To learn more about the company, visit www.OmegaAlpha.com or call 1-800-651-3172.
Photo: Tiago Ernesto and the stunning Lusitano stallion, Hobbit Interagro receiving their Omega Alpha Healthy Horse Award during week three of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival. (Photo courtesy of JRPR, no photo credit necessary)

Laura Graves and Verdades Capture Another Win in the “Friday Night Stars” Grand Prix Freestyle at AGDF 3

Deirdre Sullivan for Jennifer Wood Media, Inc.
Wellington, FL – January 25, 2019 – U.S. dressage stars and currently ranked number two in the world, Laura Graves (USA) and Verdades performed a beautiful test and earned a score of 84.935% to win the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI-W, presented by the U.S. P.R.E. Association on Friday, January 25, at the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) in Wellington, FL. Week three of AGDF will conclude on Sunday, January 27, and AGDF continues through March 31.
Laura Graves and Verdades. © SusanStickle.com
“This freestyle was nice. This was the second time I’ve ridden to this music. I’m
definitely feeling a little more comfortable with it,” commented Graves, who has captured medals at the Olympic Games and World Equestrian Games with Verdades, her 17-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding by Florett AS. “I’m glad to add another good score to qualifying [for the World Cup Finals]. In a normal year we’d be qualified by now, but we have one more show to do so we’ll be back at the end of February, I believe, to hopefully qualify.”
Kasey Perry-Glass (USA) and Goerklintgaards Dublet, a 16-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding by Diamond Hit owned by Diane Perry, came in second with a score of 82.425%.
Kasey Perry-Glass and Goerklintgaards Dublet. © SusanStickle.com
“The weather was great for Dublet. He loves the cold weather, said Perry-Glass of her 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games Tryon (WEG) team silver medal-winning partner. “It really gets him a little bit more amped. I’m just very proud of him for this show, to come out and score a personal best in [yesterday’s] grand prix out of WEG. Unfortunately, I had a little bit of a spook coming in [the freestyle], so that kind of put me a little behind my music. I felt a little rushed throughout my choreography, but he nailed everything.”
Shelly Francis and Danilo (USA), a 15-year-old Hanoverian gelding by De Niro x Annabella owned by Patricia Stempel, earned a score of 80.535% and came in third place in the freestyle.
“I just feel like my horse is really kind of liking this freestyle,” commented Francis about Danilo. “He kind of gets a little pumped up tonight with the cooler weather. It was good. He felt really fun and awesome though; he was just trying to do everything. The piaffe and passage and pirouettes are always getting better, and he’s always been pretty good about the changes. He’s kind of coming into himself.”
Shelly Francis and Danilo. ©SusanStickle.com
Judge at C Michael Osinski, pointed out – and it was confirmed – that for the first time in a dressage competition in the U.S., the top three earned above 80%. Osinski commented, “It just was an honor to watch all three of you, such elegant, harmonious, beautiful riders. It was just great, and I wish them all the best.”
AGDF Director of Sport Thomas Baur also pointed out that Adrienne Lyle (USA) and Tinne Vilhelmson Silfven (SWE) placed fourth and fifth with top scores above and near 79%.
“I think that we did not have many qualifiers in the Western European league this year or last year, that were that strong,” he noted. “I think we have come a long way here, and it’s pretty amazing.”
Laura Graves and Verdades in their winning presentation with Jane Bistline of U.S. P.R.E. Association, Allyn Mann of Adequan®, judge Michael Osinski, Janne Rumbough of of U.S. P.R.E. Association, Thomas Baur of AGDF, and Kimberly Van Kampen of U.S. P.R.E. Association. ©SusanStickle.com
“It’s been a really exciting week for us,” said Jane Bistline of the U.S. P.R.E. Association. “We had the U.S. P.R.E. event on Wednesday night, where everyone brought their Spanish horses and we really had a nice time.
“We’re just really honored to have you here in America,” she said to the top three riders.
Earlier on Friday, Jennifer Baumert (USA) and Handsome, a 14-year-old Hanoverian gelding by Hochadel owned by Betsy Juliano LLC, won the FEI Intermediate I CDI3* presented by Horseware Ireland. The pair earned a score of 73.676%.
Jennifer Baumert and Handsome. ©SusanStickle.com
In the FEI Grand Prix Special CDI3*, presented by Adequan®, Katherine Bateson Chandler (USA) and Alcazar, a 14-year-old KWPN gelding by Cantango owned by Jane Forbes Clark, won with a score of 72.319%.
Katherine Bateson Chandler and Alcazar. ©SusanStickle.com
Brittany Frasier-Beaulieu (CAN) and All In, her 14-year-old KWPN gelding by Tango, came in second with a score of 69.936%. Yvonne Losos De Muniz (DOM) and Aquamarijn, her 14-year-old KWPN mare by United, earned a score of 68.936% for third place.
Katherine Bateson Chandler and Alcazar in their winning presentation with judge Jane Weatherwax and Allyn Mann of Adequan®. ©SusanStickle.com
Competition at AGDF will resume on Saturday, January 26, with a full schedule of classes, including the FEI Intermediate I Freestyle CDI3*, presented by Horseware Ireland. Competition will continue during Week 5 from February 6-10 at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, FL. Week 5 features the Grand Prix Freestyle CDI 5*, presented by CaptiveOne Advisors, and the Grand Prix Special CDI 5*, presented by Wellington Equestrian Realty. The 2019 AGDF hosts 7 CDI weeks, 2 CPEDI weeks, and national competition through March 31. For more information and to see a full list of results, please visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.
Final Results: FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI-W, Presented by the U.S. P.R.E. Association
Place, Rider, Nationality, Horse, Horse Information: Judge E%, Judge H%, Judge C%, Judge M%, Judge B%, Total %
1. Laura Graves (USA), Verdades, 17-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding by Florett AS x Liwilards and owned by Laura Graves: 86.525%, 83.100%, 83.900%, 85.525%, 85.625%, 84. 935%
2. Kasey Perry-Glass (USA), Goerklintgaards Dublet, 16-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding by Diamond Hit x La Costa and owned by Diane Perry: 82.875%, 82.375%, 81.875%, 82.375%, 82.625%, 82.425%
3.Shelly Francis (USA), Danilo, 15-year-old Hanoverian gelding by De Niro x Annabella and owned by Patricia Stempel: 81.825%, 80.925%, 80.800%, 80.200%, 78.925%, 80.535%
4.Adrienne Lyle (USA), Salvino, 12-year-old Hanoverian gelding by Sandro Hit x Dynastie and owned by Betsy Juliano LLC: 79.925%, 78.775%, 78.125%, 80.375%, 79.475%, 79.335%
5.Tinne Vilhelmson Silfven (SWE), Don Auriello, 17-year-old Hanoverian gelding by Don Davidoff x Wey o Mey and owned by Lovsta Stuteri: 78.925%, 79.450%, 79.050%, 79.550%, 77.925%, 78.980%
6. Jill Irving (CAN), Degas 12, 17-year-old Hanoverian gelding by De Niro x Rosana M and owned by Jill Irving: 73.050%, 69.750%, 68.475%, 72.225%, 72.250%, 71.150%
Photo credit: ©SusanStickle.com. These images may only be used in relation to this press release and with credit.