Laura Graves and Verdades Clinch Grand Prix Special Individual Silver Medal at FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018

Laura Graves and Verdades Take Home Silver in the Grand Prix Special at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018

by US Equestrian Communications Department | Sep 14, 2018, 8:09 PM EST

Laura Graves, Isabell Werth, Charlotte Dujardin (Photo by Shannon Brinkman Photo)

Mill Spring, N.C. – It was a historic moment for U.S. dressage as Laura Graves and Verdades were awarded the individual silver medal after a stellar performance in the Grand Prix Special at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ (WEG) Tryon 2018 with a score of 81.717 percent. This accomplishment by Graves and Verdades is the first individual silver medal to be awarded to a U.S. dressage rider at a global championship, including the World Equestrian and Olympic Games. Fellow U.S. teammate Kasey Perry-Glass and Goerklintgaards Dublet were also successful in the Special, earning a 78.541 percent for a top-ten finish.

Isabell Werth and Bella Rose from Germany won the individual gold medal on an impressive 86.246 percent, while Charlotte Dujardin and Mount St John Freestyle from Great Britain claimed bronze with 81.489 percent.

Graves and Verdades (Photo by Erin Gilmore for Shannon Brinkman Photo)

Leaving no room for error, U.S. Olympian Graves (Geneva, Fla.) piloted Verdades, the 16-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding she owns with Curt Maes, to be the first combination to crack 80 percent in the Grand Prix Special. Calm and composed, Verdades danced down the centerline after beautifully executing a technically challenging test. Graves and Verdades will compete again in the Freestyle on Sunday.

“[Verdades is] amazing,” said Graves. “I’m lucky enough to be on a horse that wants to do his job. It’s a real test of a horse’s character when you ask them to go and they show up for you. [Verdades] just steps it up for me every time. You just cannot say enough good things about him. Today I’m very proud of how he let me ride him.”

Looking forward to Sunday’s Freestyle, Graves commented, “We can’t be any more prepared than we are right now. [Verdades] just felt really rideable,” said Graves.

Perry-Glass and Goerklintgaards Dublet (Photo by Shannon Brinkman Photo)

Perry-Glass (Wellington, Fla.) and Goerklintgaards Dublet, Diane Perry’s 15-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding, entered the Grand Prix Special on a mission. Demonstrating flawless passage and forward tempi changes, Olympian Perry-Glass and Goerklintgaards Dublet ended the day on a 78.541 percent.

“I’m so excited! I knew today was going to be a fight for us,” said Perry-Glass. “[Goerklintgaards Dublet] gave it his all and was there with his power and elasticity, and showed off his best suits. The piaffe and passage are his forte, so I’m excited about that.”

Ready to show off their Freestyle, Perry-Glass commented, “I’m really excited [about our freestyle]. I love my freestyle. It gives me goosebumps every time I hear it.”

As the first U.S. combination to ride the Grand Prix Special, Olympian Steffen Peters (San Diego, Calif.) and Suppenkasper, Four Winds Farm’s 10-year-old KWPN gelding, highlighted Suppenkasper’s ground-covering scope of motion in the extended trot. A miscommunication in the first piaffe early in the test earned them a score of 69.073 percent.

Adrienne Lyle (Ketchum, Idaho) and Salvino, Betsy Juliano LLC’s 11-year-old Hanoverian stallion, experienced some mistakes in the passage and canter work, resulting in a score of 69.043 percent.

The top 15 competitors with a score of 70 percent or greater from the Grand Prix Special will compete as individuals in the Grand Prix Freestyle on Sunday. Graves and Perry-Glass have qualified.


Competition Information

Competition concludes Sunday, September 16, at 8:30 a.m. ET in the U.S. Trust Arena, with the individual competition for the Grand Prix Freestyle.

Competition Schedule


Find out more about the WEG.

Incredible Isabell takes Special Gold with her Beloved Bella Rose



Isabell Werth LWS.jpg
“I can’t hear you!” Germany’s Isabell Werth responds to the roars of the crowd as she celebrated victory in the Helgstrand Dressage Grand Prix Special at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2018 in Tryon, USA today. (FEI/Martin Dokoupil)
Graves gives USA silver; Dujardin underpins comeback by bringing bronze home for Britain
Germany’s Isabell Werth (49) showed exactly why she is the most decorated rider in the history of equestrian sport when claiming the Helgstrand Dressage Grand Prix Special title at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2018 in Tryon, USA today. Bringing the 14-year-old mare, Bella Rose, back to good health and fitness after an injury sustained four years ago has been a long, slow process. But her faith and dedication was repaid in full this afternoon when she topped the Special podium for the third time in the 28-year history of the Games.

And she was under maximum pressure when last into the US Trust arena, with America’s Laura Graves (31) and Verdades sitting in gold medal spot ahead of Great Britain’s Charlotte Dujardin (33) and Mount St John Freestyle as she set off down the centre line. She had an added incentive to nudge them further down the podium however, because her great personal friend and patron, Madeleine Winter-Schulze, broke her leg in a fall shortly after watching Werth help win team gold yesterday evening.

““I feel so sorry for Madeleine, she is in hospital so I said I’ll try my best to bring the gold medal to her this evening with a glass of champagne!”

Isabell Werth (GER)

said the lady whose golden collection is second to none.

Graves set the target with an extraordinary performance from her 16-year-old gelding when fourth-last to go of the 30 starters. With clockwork rhythm and show-stopping style they posted a mark of 81.717 that would prove hard to beat. Werth’s team-mate Sonke Rothenberger (23), who came so close to toppling his legendary compatriot when taking individual silver at last summer’s FEI European Championships in Gothenburg (SWE), looked likely to put up a mighty challenge when next into the arena, but a couple of mistakes saw him having to settle for a score of 81.277.

And then Dujardin overtook him when posting 81.489 to slot temporarily into silver medal spot. The British rider was the undisputed queen of the sport during her record-breaking partnership with the great Valegro which came to an end when the horse was retired two years ago. So she’s been in the wilderness for a while, but today she stepped right back onto centre stage when scoring 81.489 with a mare that is only nine years old. It’s clear this is a horse whose potential is only beginning to be realised, so there’s a shiver of excitement running through the sport after today’s result.

Dujardin knew she had to up her game to prove that potential, and she did it with a breathtaking performance that suggests there’s so much more to look forward to. “I felt I’d nothing to lose today and I knew I had a tough job. I was like the jam between the German sandwich, with Isabell at one end and Sonke at the other!” she said.

However it was all about Isabell at the end of the day, the living legend punching out massive scores to put the result beyond doubt for a final scoreline of 86.246.

“I knew we had to give the best to get the gold today, but I felt so safe on her, and she had so much energy and was so patient. It’s always great to go in when you know there’s a chance because the horse is so good. Then it’s just up to you to show it in the right way” Werth said.

Now it’s on to Sunday’s Grand Prix Freestyle when Werth may find it even more difficult to secure her third gold medal of the tournament. Because Graves and Dujardin are in no mood to crumble. And it looks very much like Dujardin wants to wrest back the crown she wore for so long during Valegro’s reign as Dressage king of the ring.

That may not be in two days’ time, but talking about her mare the British rider said  “when she’s stronger and more confident I’m going to give Isabell a run for her money – we’ll be back fighting!”. Werth just smiled.

Full result here 

Mary Anne McPhail, Martha McDaniel, and Priscilla Endicott Named 2018 USDF Members of Distinction

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Lexington, KY (September 11, 2018) – The United States Dressage Federation™ (USDF) is pleased to announce that Mary Anne McPhail, Martha McDaniel, and Priscilla Endicott have been named 2018 USDF Members of Distinction and will be recognized at this year’s Salute Gala & Annual Awards Banquet, held during the Adequan®/USDF Annual Convention in Salt Lake City, UT. USDF Member of Distinction Awards are prestigious, national awards that annually recognize USDF members, who have demonstrated exceptional commitment to their local area or region.

Mary Anne McPhail is a USDF Bronze, Silver, and Gold Medalist and a long time member of the Gold Coast Dressage Association.  Locally, Mary Anne is known in Florida for hosting a wide array of educational programs at her farm in Loxahatchee, such as Adequan®/USDF FEI-Level Trainers Conferences and USEF judges programs. She has also been the longtime organizer of the Palm Beach Derby, a tradition in Florida dressage. Mary Anne is also responsible for the establishment of the Mary Anne McPhail Dressage Chair in Equine Sports Medicine at the Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine, which has led to a greater understanding in biomechanics and soundness and continues to influence equipment design and judging of the sport of dressage to ensure the wellbeing of our equine athletes.

Martha McDaniel has recorded an impressive 385 rides down the centerline, out of which she has earned numerous USDF rider awards including her USDF Bronze and Silver Medals, Bronze and Silver Freestyle Bars, and Master’s Challenge at Training through FEI levels.   As a longtime Aloha State Dressage Society (ASDS) member, Martha has always been very active in making sure the “little state” was represented in USDF governance, through her eighteen years of convention attendance and her many years of service as a delegate and proxy. In addition to receiving the ASDS Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016, Martha has organized numerous educational and competitive events in Hawaii. Without Martha’s dedication and volunteerism, dressage in Hawaii would not be where it is today.

Priscilla “Pep” Endicott is credited with the creation of the New England Dressage Association (NEDA), one of the first dressage organizations in the United States. NEDA has grown steadily in membership, competition production, and educational outreach throughout the decades, first under her leadership as president, and subsequently under the volunteer efforts of those dressage enthusiasts whom she inspired.  It is Priscilla’s creativity and outstanding organizational abilities, and her dedication to the constancy of the learning process, that has led to this growth. Although she has retired from the day to day, hands on guidance of NEDA, her influence will have a resounding impact on the sport for many years to come.

For more information about the USDF Member of Distinction Award and Roemer Foundation/USDF Hall of Fame, visit the USDF website at, or contact the USDF office at

Germany Wins Team Gold with Tearful Comeback for Isabell Werth and Bella Rose in Helgstrand Dressage Competition

Tryon, NC USA – September 13, 2018 – It was anything less than routine when Germany took the Team Gold medal, adding number 12 to their collection in Helgstrand Dressage competition at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 on Thursday, September 13 in U.S. Trust Arena. Team veteran Isabell Werth’s tears ran freely after her stellar performance with Bella Rose, which brought the team score up to 242.950 points to secure their stance at the top of the podium.
Isabell Werth and Bella Rose

Sönke Rothenberger (23) and Cosmo, both at their first WEG, had added 81.444 to the scores of Jessica von Bredow-Werndl and Dorothee Schneider. Those two had set the foundation for the Gold medal on Wednesday during the FEI Grand Prix competition.

Team USA finished second on 233.136 points, securing their second WEG Team Silver thanks to a top performance from Laura Graves and Verdades. The pair rode in last and turned in 81.630 points, the second best result of the competition.

Sönke Rothenberger and Cosmo

“I was a bit under the weather today, but it is amazing what adrenaline can do. There was a lot of pressure on me today,” Graves said.

Great Britain secured bronze on 229.628 keeping the Swedish team at bay by just 0.172 points. Defending champion Charlotte Dujardin and veteran Carl Hester both had brought two very young horses and Dujardin’s nine-year-old Mount St John Freestyle seems set to fill in the big hoof prints left by golden horse Valegro, coming fifth individually in the mare’s sixth’s FEI Grand Prix appearance.

Jessica von Bredow-Werndl and TSF Dalera BB
“For the last six or seven years I think that people thought that British Dressage was just Valegro and that was it.
“I think this has proven that we do still have depth in British Dressage, which was the main point of coming here,” Carl Hester said. 
Dorothee Schnieder and Sammy Davis Jr.


Dressage queen Isabell Werth, at her seventh WEG, changed between crying and beaming even long after the last halt in front of the judges had earned her the top score of 84.829.

“This was my answer to all those who did not understand how I could leave the world’s number one horse at home for this one. Most horse people here know how close I am to Bella and to bring her back after the long recovery after WEG 2014 is extra special. We always knew it could be a risk, but it is like that with every horse.”

Team Germany on their victory gallop after clinching the win in Helgstrand Dressage Team competition at Tryon 2018.
The top thirty horses move on towards the first Individual title at Tryon 2018. The FEI Grand Prix Special opens at 10:30 a.m. EST on Friday, September 14 in U.S. Trust Arena.
German Eventing Star Julia Krajewski Sets Scorching Pace In Tryon Sunshine
Germany’s Julia Krajewski produced a staggering performance in the North Carolina sunshine as Mars, Inc. Eventing began at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2018 Tryon on Thursday.
Krajewski, a renowned superstar performer in the dressage phase with Chipmunk FRH, did not disappoint the electric atmosphere in Tryon Stadium that lapped up every moment of what at times looked like an exhibition performance.
Julia Krajewski and Chipmunk FRH
The rider herself admitted she was close to tears, such was the horse’s brilliance in scoring just 19.9 penalties, as defending champions Germany made an immediate statement of intent in their quest to capture the Mars, Inc. Eventing crown.
There were some strong dressage displays on day one of the competition, with the likes of USA’s Boyd Martin, Great Britain’s Piggy French, Australian Christopher Burton and France’s Donatien Schuly all posting sub-30 scores.
But, the German was in a different league, and she said, “Maybe something really good was going to happen today and he felt awesome during the test.
“He has done good dressage tests before, but to produce it in such an atmosphere on this day, the people went crazy.
“It is not a personal best – he has had scores of 19 something before – but it is not just push a button and get 19. With a horse like him that can really do it, it is all about the detail.
“I am so proud. I had to stop the tears when I finished the test. It is an amazing feeling.”
Boyd Martin rose to the challenge impressively on home soil with Tsetserleg to post a 27.1 score and lie second overnight, just ahead of Piggy French and Quarrycrest Echo on 27.8.
Boyd Martin and Tsetserleg


“I am very happy with him,” he said of the 11-year-old gelding. “It is only the second time he has done that test. He’s a good boy and just gets in there and does it.”
French led the British challenge on day one as they bid to reclaim a title won impressively in Kentucky eight years ago.
“He is a really cool horse,” French said. “He’s still not the most experienced and there is still more to come from him, but he has got an amazing brain and so you can be quite brave. I always give it a good go.”
Eventing icons Blyth Tait and Andrew Hoy, meanwhile, showed they had lost none of their world-class quality by holding top 10 placings overnight after New Zealander Tait – twice an Eventing World Champion – and Australian Hoy, a three-time Olympic Gold medalist, shone on Dassett Courage and Vassily de Lassos, respectively.
Piggy French and Quarrycrest Echo
“I was thrilled to bits with him, to be honest,” Tait said. “My team mates told me to be brave, but when you are going out first for the team you want to post a solid score, and he did that.”
And Hoy added, “He (Vassily de Lassos) could not have done one step better. He is not the finished product, he is a long way from it, but his test was a personal best. I jokingly said on Wednesday night that I was going to ride for a sub-30 score!”
Remaining Team and Individual riders enter the arena for day two of dressage on Friday, September 14, before attention turns to the second phase of Cross-Country on the White Oak Course at TIEC on Saturday, September 15.
Final Qualifying Places Filled In Race For Individual Johnson Controls Reining Medals
The full picture is now complete for the Johnson Controls Reining Individual Final at FEI World Equestrian Games™ 2018 Tryon.
Thursday’s second Individual Qualifier saw six remaining places to be filled, joining the other athletes who had progressed from the first qualifier.
Medals will be decided in Johnson Controls Reining on Saturday, September 15, at the Tryon International Equestrian Center to conclude discipline competition.
The sold-out Johnson Controls Reining Final will take place on Saturday, September 15 at Tryon 2018.
It was Austria’s Martin Muhlstatter, riding Blo Gun, that took the top spot with a score of 223 points and was followed by Italy’s Pierluigi Chioldo and Gun at the Gate, with French challenger Axel Pesek also progressing on Uncle Sparky.
“She’s an amazing mare,” said Pierluigi, of his horse. “She was in the pasture, but she started being ridden again for WEG. She’s ten and she’s great.”
The three other spots were taken by two more Italian riders – Mirko Midili on Arc Sparkle Magnetic and Mirjam Stillo with Ruff Spook – plus Uruguay’s Brigido Gabriel Diano Riccetto, riding Magnum Starlights.
For more information on the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 and to view start lists and results, please visit
To purchase tickets or for more information about the WEG, please visit

And So It Begins: Regional Qualifying Starts This Weekend for the 2018 US Dressage Finals Presented By Adequan®



By Yellow Horse Marketing for the US Dressage Finals


“It’s such a nice finish to the year in coming to the Finals because it really feels like a national championship. You hear the announcer saying riders’ names from all over the country, and it’s definitely something special to be a part of.”


For the last four years, rider/trainer Michael Bragdell has wrapped up his competition season by bringing horses to Lexington, Ky. for the US Dressage Finals presented by Adequan® on behalf of Hilltop Farm in Colora, Md. And once again, this unique championship show is a “can’t miss” event on his calendar as he prepares several mounts for the upcoming Great American Insurance Group/United States Dressage Federation (USDF) Regional Championships, where Bragdell hopes to qualify for a coveted invitation to return to the Kentucky Horse Park this November.


Every year excitement for the US Dressage Finals and Regional Championships seems to grow, and as competition gets underway this week in Region 4, it appears 2018 will be no exception: show officials report a 23% increase in the number of Regional Championship rides from when the competition was held at the same venue in Mason City, Iowa two years ago. Anticipation will only build as additional championships are scheduled across the country in the coming weeks, including Region 6 and 8 on September 20-23; Region 7 on September 27-30; Regions 5 and 9 during the week of October 4-7; and wrapping up with an exciting final weekend of qualifying in Regions 1, 2, and 3 on October 11-14. Besides providing a pathway for competitors to qualify for November’s US Dressage Finals, each of the nine Regional Championships will offer over $20,000 in prize money and awards, for a whopping total of more than $180,000 for the season.


Bragdell has already found his way to the winner’s circle at the US Dressage Finals several times, and will compete in the upcoming Great American/USDF Region 1 Championships in Virginia in pursuit of qualifying 2017 Intermediate II Open Champion Qredit Hilltop, two-time Finals Champion Sternlicht Hilltop, and newcomer SenSation HW for this year’s Finals. He will be joined by Hilltop Farm Assistant Trainer Jessica Fay, who is also hoping to punch her ticket for her first trip to Kentucky.


As an internationally-renowned center for sport horse breeding and training, Hilltop Farm has made the US Dressage Finals an important part of their successful program. “The Finals have a real championship feel to them – the venue at the Kentucky Horse Park, especially the Alltech Arena, offers a ‘big’ environment for the horses that is important for their development and confidence,” said Managing Director Natalie DiBerardinis, who has attended the Finals three times to cheer on Hilltop Farm entries. “Our country is so large that most riders stay within their region, so to get exposure to top horses and riders from around the country gives you an entirely different perspective.


“The Finals also get a lot of coverage through the livestreaming, press coverage, etc. and that can be a great boost for a stallion, sales horse, or farm/trainer’s overall program,” DiBerardinis continued. “And there’s something for everyone: for the young horses, it offers an alternative goal for some that for a variety of reasons may not be pointed towards the young horse programs; for trainers with adult amateur students, it’s a great opportunity to combine their own championship goals with their students’ goals; and the Regions Cup competition adds a fun element as well. It’s just an extremely well-run and fun show, which keeps growing and each year seems to get better and better.”


As a reminder for all competitors, a horse/rider combination must declare their intention to participate in the US Dressage Finals by completing the Declaration of Intent form by midnight on the day prior to the first day of their Regional Championship competition (including any open class day before the start of championship classes). There is no fee to declare, but horse/rider combinations must declare at the level(s) and eligible division(s) they intend to compete in at the US Dressage Finals. Declarations may be submitted at this link:


Michael Bragdell aboard Qredit. Photo Credit: Susan Stickle

The FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 – only a week to go!!

Preview image LWS.jpg
The FEI World Equestrian Games Tryon 2018 – only a week to go!! (FEI/Yong Teck Lim)
Athletes from 54 nations will battle for first-week medals
By Louise Parkes

They’re going to be dancing and prancing, jogging and spinning, jumping, galloping and giving it everything they’ve got when the horses and athletes in the first four disciplines take centre stage at the much-anticipated FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 in North Carolina, USA next week.

A total of 349 athletes from 54 countries will be chasing down the first-week medals in Dressage, Endurance, Eventing and Reining, and it’s going to be fast and furious from the outset.

The definite entry list for the first week is now complete, so here’s what we can expect once the action gets underway on 12 September.

Endurance will be first off, with 124 athletes from 40 countries tackling the 160-kilometre course, which has been designed to be technically demanding, with twists and turns and plenty of hills. Entries include defending individual champion HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum from the UAE and Jaume Punti Dachs who led the Spanish team to victory on French soil in Normandy four years ago.

It was Becky Hart of the United States with her Arabian R.O. Grand Sultan who won the individual title at the inaugural Games 28 years ago, when 81 horse-and-rider partnerships from 19 countries competed and Great Britain topped the team podium. America holds the record for the most individual Endurance titles having posted three-in-a-row in 1990, 1994 and 1998. However France has claimed the most medals with 10 in total including three gold, four silver and five bronze.

Dressage also begins on 12 September and the big question here will be whether Germany’s Isabell Werth can add to the seven gold medals she has previously taken. There are three separate competitions: the Team event, the Grand Prix Special and the Grand Prix Freestyle. Werth won her first gold in the Special in 1994 on the road to becoming the most medalled athlete in the history of equestrian sport today. A total of 61 riders from 23 countries participated that year, and this time there will be 78 representing 31 nations.

The fairytale success of Charlotte Dujardin (GBR) and her brilliant gelding Valegro who, at the height of their career together, collected both the Special and Freestyle titles in Normandy (FRA) four years ago, has been largely responsible for a massive surge in the popularity of modern Dressage. The British rider will defend her titles, but this time around with the relatively untried Mount St John Freestyle while Werth has decided to swap her world number one ride, Weihegold, for her personal favourite Bella Rose whose march to the podium in Caen was abruptly halted by injury.

Germany claimed team gold for the 11th time in 2014, and holds the record for most medals, 22 in total, at the WEG. However the hosts from the USA are tipped to turn the tide, led by the world number three combination of Laura Graves and Verdades who have been showing fantastic recent form.

North America has completely dominated the Reining medal podium since joining the WEG programme back in 1992, with the USA claiming seven titles and Canada’s Duane Latimer coming out on top at Aachen in 2006. This sport was hugely popular from the outset, with spectators enjoying every moment of the razzmatazz, hootin’ and hollerin’ that accompanies the “run down”, “roll back” and “sliding stop” manoeuvres performed by the world’s top partnerships. Mandy McCutcheon (USA, bronze in 2014) and Shawna Sapergia (CAN, bronze in 2002) are the only female athletes to have won a medal in the individual event.

With six gold medals, America’s Shawn Flarida is the most successful Reining competitor in WEG history, but he’s not coming back to defend the title he won once more last time around. However the McCutcheon name is likely to be prominent as Mandy’s husband Tom, who claimed team gold and individual silver in 2002 and double-gold on home ground in Kentucky eight years later will be joined in the US side by son Cade. A total of 64 horse-and-rider combinations from 20 countries will do battle for the team and individual Reining titles.

When it comes to Eventing, which begins on Thursday 13 September, all eyes will be on the New Zealand husband-and-wife duo of Tim and Jonelle Price because the pair of them are on fire right now, Jonelle bagging the big prize at Badminton in May and Tim topping the line-up at Burghley last weekend. And Jonelle will be saddling up her brilliant Badminton winner, Classic Moet.

Remarkably the Kiwi team will also include both Blyth Tait who claimed double-gold at the first WEG in Stockholm 1990 and his team-mate, the legendary Mark Todd, who was already a double-Olympic champion. The New Zealand record at the WEG is highly impressive, Vaughn Jefferis taking all the individual glory in 1994 and Tait pipping Todd for the individual honours in 1998 when they again topped the team table.

The phenomenal Michael Jung gave Germany its first taste of individual success in 2010 and was just pipped by team-mate Sandra Auffarth last time around in France. Auffarth comes back to defend her title and even in Jung’s absence the German side looks more than formidable as 83 riders from 23 countries set off in their quest for that coveted top step of the Eventing medal podium.

Tryon 2018 is the eighth edition of the eight-discipline Games which are held on a four-year cycle and which previously visited Stockholm (SWE) in 1990, The Hague (NED) in 1994, Rome (ITA) in 1998, Jerez (ESP) in 2002, Aachen (GER) in 1996, Kentucky (USA) in 2010 and Normandy (FRA) in 2014.

Definite entries listed here

A Novel Approach to Balancing the Equine Digestive Microflora for Improved Health and Soundness



The equine digestive microbiome has become an area of interest in recent research, attempting to determine if connections exist with other health and lameness concerns.  In human research, a large amount of data has been produced regarding the health of the digestive microbiome and implications on overall health and quality of life in the individual.  The microbiome is essentially an organ system, composed of hundreds of species of bacteria, protozoa, and fungal organisms that play a direct role in digestion of food, but also play a major role in cellular signaling, cognitive function, and inflammation. When this microbiome is out of balance, problems can quickly develop and can be life threatening on many levels.  Ultimately, considering the vastness of the equine digestive microbiome and potential connections with conditions ranging from metabolic concerns, to laminitis, joint health, emotional disturbances, and digestive upset, functional solutions are being investigated.


In this recent research trial, Nouvelle Research, Inc., conducted a small trial of 16 horses, evaluating the use of a proprietary blend of herbal concentrated extracts and their impact on the overgrowth of lactic acid bacteria in fecal samples.


As a part of the trial, the patient’s feces were cultured before and 14 days after initiating the herbal supplement, with no further changes in their diet or overall regimen.


The end result, after 14 days, indicated that each patient demonstrated a reduction in lactic acid bacteria counts in their feces, which correlates with an improved overall microbiome balance to the hindgut.  Due to this positive shift in the microbiome, each patient demonstrated clinical improvement on various levels from an improved soundness, to energy, to increased hoof growth and sole exfoliation.


This novel approach is utilizing past research and therapy options that have been conducted or utilized in traditional cultures of medicine to support and enhance digestion.  The concentrated herbal extracts appear to be well tolerated and accepted in the horse, and could be used along with other supplement regimens potentially.


For more information on the research trial, further details, and results, please visit:


To inquire further, please contact Dr. Tom Schell via email at