Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Boyd Martin Recovery Fund and Denny Emmerson's Generosity


Denny Emmerson has generously offered to donate 50% of the profits of his book How Good Riders Get Good to the Boyd Martin Recovery Fund, until December.   WEG Central is  trotting out our affiliate link to the publisher to make it easier to purchase Denny's book directly from them. WEG Central will make a cash donation of the affiliate fees generated by your purchases throughout the month of June through this link. Won't you join the us in supporting these members of the Equestrian community? After all, regardless of your discipline, it's a great read and a great cause.

Click on the box below to go directly to the appropriate page on the publisher's site. ~ ed


Eventing: Boyd Martin Fire: Boyd Martin True Prospect Recovery Fund

West Grove, PA - May 31, 2011 - This morning's barn fire has affected the lives of so many people at Boyd Martin's barn and True Prospect Farm. From horses tragically lost, to the loss of equipment and personal belongings, as well as one of True Prospect's barns and living quarters for the wonderful people who work there. Everyone at True Prospect Farm was heroic in their efforts to save the lives of horses and recover as much equipment as they could.

The Professional Riders Organization would like to thank everyone for their generous offers of assistance on behalf of Boyd, his staff and everyone at True Prospect Farm. There are several options available for people who would like to make donations to support Boyd, Lillian Heard, Caitlin Silliman, Ryan Wood, Abie Golden, and True Prospect Farm. Donations can be made online at:

The True Prospect Fire Recovery Fund -
 http://www.facebook.com/pages/True-Prospect-Fire-Recovery-Fund/212567392108821

OR  http://www.phillipdutton.com/donatenow.php

The Tax Deductible Relief Fund has been set up through Southern California Equestrian Sports (SCES) - http://boydandsilvamartin.blogspot.com/

In addition, the Professional Riders Organization (PRO) will be sponsoring an online silent auction with all proceeds to benefit the affected individuals. More details will follow soon.

Eventing: Barn Fire at Boyd Martin's Barn

Via Mythic Landing Events:
 
West Grove, PA - May 31, 2011 -At 12:30am this morning, a barn fire of unknown cause tragically destroyed Boyd Martin's barn at True Prospect Farm.  Eleven horses were in the barn at the time.  Lillian Heard, Caitlin Silliman and Ryan Wood were able to evacuate five horses. Four horses are currently in treatment at The University of Pennsylvania-New Bolten Center; they are: Neville Bardos, Otis Barbotiere, Catch a Star and Ambassador's Rose.  Lillian, Caitlin and Ryan were treated and released from Jennersville Hospital.  Tragically six horses perished in the fire.  The PRO wishes to extend our deepest condolences to all those connected to Call Me Ollie, Charla, Ariel, Phantom Pursuit, Cagney Herself, and Summer Breeze.  Our thoughts and prayers are with Boyd and his team at this time.  All other horses have been relocated to area barns.  Further information on how you can help Boyd will be released shortly.

Jumping: Saugerties: McLain Ward and Oh’ D Eole win the $50,000 HITS Grand Prix, Presented by Pfizer Animal Health, at HITS Saugerties

© ESI Photography.
McLain Ward and Oh' D Eole on course in Sunday's $50,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, at HITS-on-the-Hudson in Saugerties, New York.

SAUGERTIES, NEW YORK (May 30, 2011) — Two-time Olympic Gold Medalist McLain Ward is on the road to the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix after a big win aboard his own Oh’ D Eole in Sunday’s $50,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, to highlight HITS-on-the-Hudson I. Ward, of Brewster, New York, won the inaugural Pfizer Million last year and has his sights set on this year’s event on Sunday, September 11.

“This was a good class,” said Ward, moments after his victory gallop on Sunday afternoon. “It was difficult enough with a lot of technical questions, but it was intelligent and rode nicely. I think the weather was great and a little on the warm side, which can make a big difference.”

The course for Sunday’s $50,000 Grand Prix was designed by Jose “Pepe” Gamarra of Ellenton, Florida, who made his debut this week at HITS-on-the-Hudson. “I think the footing in this ring [Strongid® C 2X Grand Prix Stadium] is the best footing I’ve ever seen anywhere,” said Gamarra. “The horses have improved all week long and the footing has played a big part in that.”

Gamarra accomplished exactly what he planned for the class. “I expect between six to eight in the jump-off,” he said prior to the start of the class, which eventually saw seven riders return after the first round. “There were a lot of young horses here so, with that in mind, it was a fair course.”

Ward was the first to return in the jump-off and right away set the Great American Time to Beat at 33.760 seconds, which would go untouched. “This mare [Oh’ D Eole] is still a bit young but she’s been doing really well lately, winning two out of her last three Grand Prix,” said Ward. “I didn’t want to do anything insane going first in the jump-off, I just wanted to put up a good fast time and I knew she could do that, she’s a very fast horse.”

Fellow U.S. Olympian Peter Leone of Greenwich, Connecticut, aboard Select, owned by Lionshare Farm and Ger Poels, posted a clear effort two trips later in 35.270 seconds, which earned him a second-place finish in the end. Germaine Edelmann of Rexford, New York was next to show and produced the last clear effort in 41.645 seconds aboard Carotino, owned by Blue River Farm Sales, which earned her third place. The duo got their start together this past winter at HITS Ocala, earning a second-place victory in the Week IV $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, as well as numerous ribbons throughout the circuit.

© ESI Photography.
Lisa Engel and Tony Hitchcock of HITS present the awards to McLain Ward and Oh' D Eole after their victory in Sunday's $50,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health.


Ward made it clear that he plans on qualifying once again for the richest jumper class in the world, the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix. “Winning the Pfizer Million last year was very special to me,” said Ward. “It’ll always be something that will stand out in my career and I’m excited to compete in it again this year. Today was a great day to get started on earning some prize money in order to get qualified.”

Rounding out the top five in the class were Kate Levy aboard her own Starlight in fourth, and Alexa Lowe aboard Windsor Farm Sales’ Amicello in fifth. Ward also finished eighth and ninth in Sunday’s class aboard Seth Vallhonrat and Anne Hamilton’s Coco 135 and Blue Chip Bloodstock’s Domino, respectively.

Show jumping will continue this week with HITS-on-the-Hudson II, as High-Performance riders will have two more opportunities to qualify for the Pfizer Million with the $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, which will serve as a fundraiser for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society on Friday, June 3. Then on Sunday, June 5 the stakes get even higher with the $75,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health.

HITS, Inc. produces high-quality, international-level hunter/jumper horse shows. Based in upstate New York in the village of Saugerties, HITS has been producing shows since 1982 and is now a nationwide company with world-class circuits in California, Florida, Arizona, New York and Virginia. In 2010, HITS took the industry to new heights when it hosted the first-ever Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix. HITS will once again offer the most innovative weekend in show jumping history in 2011 when it hosts the second annual Pfizer Million and the inaugural Diamond Mills $500,000 Hunter Prix Final, September 10-11, at HITS-on-the-Hudson in Saugerties, New York.


For more information and a complete schedule of classes and events, visit HitsShows.com. Stay connected with HITS, join us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Jumping: Saugerties: HITS: McLain Ward and Oh’ D Eole win the $50,000 HITS Grand Prix

© ESI Photography.
McLain Ward and Oh' D Eole on course in Sunday's $50,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, at HITS-on-the-Hudson in Saugerties, New York.

SAUGERTIES, NEW YORK (May 30, 2011) — Two-time Olympic Gold Medalist McLain Ward is on the road to the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix after a big win aboard his own Oh’ D Eole in Sunday’s $50,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, to highlight HITS-on-the-Hudson I. Ward, of Brewster, New York, won the inaugural Pfizer Million last year and has his sights set on this year’s event on Sunday, September 11.

“This was a good class,” said Ward, moments after his victory gallop on Sunday afternoon. “It was difficult enough with a lot of technical questions, but it was intelligent and rode nicely. I think the weather was great and a little on the warm side, which can make a big difference.”

The course for Sunday’s $50,000 Grand Prix was designed by Jose “Pepe” Gamarra of Ellenton, Florida, who made his debut this week at HITS-on-the-Hudson. “I think the footing in this ring [Strongid® C 2X Grand Prix Stadium] is the best footing I’ve ever seen anywhere,” said Gamarra. “The horses have improved all week long and the footing has played a big part in that.”

Gamarra accomplished exactly what he planned for the class. “I expect between six to eight in the jump-off,” he said prior to the start of the class, which eventually saw seven riders return after the first round. “There were a lot of young horses here so, with that in mind, it was a fair course.”

Ward was the first to return in the jump-off and right away set the Great American Time to Beat at 33.760 seconds, which would go untouched. “This mare [Oh’ D Eole] is still a bit young but she’s been doing really well lately, winning two out of her last three Grand Prix,” said Ward. “I didn’t want to do anything insane going first in the jump-off, I just wanted to put up a good fast time and I knew she could do that, she’s a very fast horse.”

Fellow U.S. Olympian Peter Leone of Greenwich, Connecticut, aboard Select, owned by Lionshare Farm and Ger Poels, posted a clear effort two trips later in 35.270 seconds, which earned him a second-place finish in the end. Germaine Edelmann of Rexford, New York was next to show and produced the last clear effort in 41.645 seconds aboard Carotino, owned by Blue River Farm Sales, which earned her third place. The duo got their start together this past winter at HITS Ocala, earning a second-place victory in the Week IV $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, as well as numerous ribbons throughout the circuit.
© ESI Photography.
Lisa Engel and Tony Hitchcock of HITS present the awards to McLain Ward and Oh' D Eole after their victory in Sunday's $50,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health.
Ward made it clear that he plans on qualifying once again for the richest jumper class in the world, the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix. “Winning the Pfizer Million last year was very special to me,” said Ward. “It’ll always be something that will stand out in my career and I’m excited to compete in it again this year. Today was a great day to get started on earning some prize money in order to get qualified.”

Rounding out the top five in the class were Kate Levy aboard her own Starlight in fourth, and Alexa Lowe aboard Windsor Farm Sales’ Amicello in fifth. Ward also finished eighth and ninth in Sunday’s class aboard Seth Vallhonrat and Anne Hamilton’s Coco 135 and Blue Chip Bloodstock’s Domino, respectively.


Show jumping will continue this week with HITS-on-the-Hudson II, as High-Performance riders will have two more opportunities to qualify for the Pfizer Million with the $25,000 SmartPak Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health, which will serve as a fundraiser for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society on Friday, June 3. Then on Sunday, June 5 the stakes get even higher with the $75,000 HITS Grand Prix, presented by Pfizer Animal Health.

HITS, Inc. produces high-quality, international-level hunter/jumper horse shows. Based in upstate New York in the village of Saugerties, HITS has been producing shows since 1982 and is now a nationwide company with world-class circuits in California, Florida, Arizona, New York and Virginia. In 2010, HITS took the industry to new heights when it hosted the first-ever Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix. HITS will once again offer the most innovative weekend in show jumping history in 2011 when it hosts the second annual Pfizer Million and the inaugural Diamond Mills $500,000 Hunter Prix Final, September 10-11, at HITS-on-the-Hudson in Saugerties, New York.

Eventing: Australia's Olympic legend Bill Roycroft passes away aged 96

Australian Olympic legend Bill Roycroft passed away early yesterday morning at age 96 at Camperdown in Victoria.

A legend of Equestrian sport in Australia, James William George Roycroft OBE, known as “Bill”, was one of Australia’s greatest Olympians and one of only five Australians to have competed in five consecutive Olympic Games. He represented Australia in Rome 1960, Tokyo 1964, Mexico City 1968, Munich 1972 and Montreal 1976 and became Australia’s oldest medallist and oldest competitor at 61 years and 31 days.  He was Australia’s oldest living Olympian.

It was at the 1960 Olympic Games that Roycroft together with his team mates won Australia’s first-ever Equestrian medal, a gold medal in Eventing.

Equestrian Australia’s Chairman, Paul Cargill, said Roycroft was a pioneer in the sport and paved the way for Australia’s Equestrian athletes.

“The Equestrian community is deeply saddened by the loss of Bill, a true legend of our sport.

“Our thoughts at this time are with Bill’s family and friends, especially Wayne, Barry and Clarke,” said Mr Cargill.

“Not only have we lost one of our most celebrated Olympians, but we’ve lost a man who was truly passionate about Equestrian and together with his family has given so much to our sport.

“His performance as part of the 1960 Rome team is legendary and inspired the next generation of Equestrian athletes.

“Their performance catapulted Australia’s reputation as one of the best Eventing teams in the world and his legacy will continue to be felt right throughout our sport for many years,” he said.

The story of 1960 Rome Team was one the captured the hearts of a nation. A team of outback horseman won two gold and one silver medal. Roycroft secured the team gold by defying doctor’s orders and leaving his hospital bed to ride in the show jumping phase. With the use of just with one arm he rode a perfect round to claim gold for Australia.

Lifetime friend and 1960 Olympic team mate Neale Lavis said, “Bill was just a great mate, he always stood beside you no matter what was happening.

“As a horseman he was second to none.  Bill was a character and life was never dull where he was.

“As a competitor he always kept you on your toes, and let you know it too,” added Neale.

Memorial details will be made available by the family in the coming days.



Biography
James William George “Bill” Roycroft OBE
1915-2011
Olympic Record:        
1960 Rome                               Gold Medal
1964 Tokyo                              
1968 Mexico City                       Bronze Medal (Australian Team Flag bearer)
1972 Munich                           
1976 Montreal                           Bronze Medal
                                 
Other achievements:
Roycroft became an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1969 for his service to sport, and was awarded an Order of Merit by the Australian Olympic Committee in 1978 for his outstanding achievement in sport. He helped carry the official Olympic flag into the stadium at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games along with seven other Australian Olympians.

Bill, patriarch of a legendary riding family, competed at Olympic Games alongside each of his sons, Barry, Wayne and Clarke.

In May 2011, Bill was inducted in Equestrian Australia’s inaugural Hall of Fame.

Harry Gordon, AOC historian tells the story of the infamous 1960 Rome Team.

On the last day of the Three-Day Event, Australia faced a grim predicament. Two riders, Laurie Morgan and Neale Lavis, were doing well, however Brian Crago’s horse was out of the competition due to injury, and the fourth member of the team, Bill Roycroft, was in hospital - concussed, sedated, with extensive bruising and muscle damage. Doctors refused to sanction his release from hospital. The problem was that, if Australia was to win the team event, it needed three finishers. Roycroft had fallen during the cross-country the previous day after his horse, Our Solo, somersaulted over and landed on him. He had climbed groggily back, finished the course, then been given oxygen (and whisky) and flown by helicopter to a hospital outside Rome.

Next morning, with the final phase, the show jumping, due to start soon, Roycroft insisted on signing himself out of hospital. The doctors said no, and refused to give him his clothes; he then threatened to leave in his underpants. Finally, he signed a document taking responsibility for his safety, and was allowed to go. He was 45, laced heavily with pain killers, unable to bend, and his comrades had to dress him for the last ride. He was virtually folded onto Our Solo, and the reins were placed in his hands. Stiffly yet flawlessly, he completed the round, ensuring team gold for Australia.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

U.S. Second in Young Rider Nations Cup at CSIOY Reims

From the USEF Communications Department
Reims, France - The USEF European Young Rider Tour continued its successful trip through Europe with another second-place finish in the Nations Cup at CSIOY Reims. Runners-up in Belgium the previous weekend, the Young Riders continued their successful European effort.

Catherine Pasmore led off the U.S. team, rebounding from a 13-fault first round on My Boy to improve to eight faults in round two. Karen Polle rode With Wings in the second position to a six-fault effort in the first round but only picked up one time fault in round two. Reed Kessler had the best result, jumping two double clear rounds on Onisha which kept the momentum going and then Jessica Springsteen picked up a time fault in each round - but also added a rail in the second round on Vornado van den Hoendrik. The 16-fault effort left the team second behind the Netherlands who finished on nine faults.

Katie Prudent served as Chef d'Equipe.

Thursday was an extremely successful day for the U.S. riders in preparation for the Nations Cup. Catherine Pasmore won convincingly on Van David in CSIO YR PX Conseil General de la Marne over her two teammates, Karen Polle on With Wings, who was second, and Jessica Springsteen on Cincinatti La Silla who was third. Reed Kessler and Onisha finished seventh, Richard Neal on Transmission was ninth and Pasmore was 10th on her second horse My Boy.

In the CSIO Juniors 1.25m Meg O'Mara was third with Smeagle.

Jumping continues throughout the weekend.

USEF Accepting Bids to Host the 2012 Markel/USEF Young Horse Dressage Selection Trials - By USEF Dressage Department

Lexington, KY - The United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) is accepting bids to host the 2012 Markel/USEF Young Horse Dressage Selection Trials.

The Young Horse Selection Trials historically have taken place in May and June in three different regions of the country. These trials -- for 5- and 6-year-olds -- are an opportunity for horse and rider to qualify for the FEI World Breeding Championships. They also serve as an opportunity for athletes to qualify for the Markel/USEF National Young Horse Dressage Championships.

The Markel/USEF Young Horse Dressage Program promotes the importance of selective breeding and correct training of horses in the United States, and encourages participation of breeders, riders and trainers of young horses in dressage competition. The purposes of this program are to encourage the properly structured development of young dressage prospects through the training scale, to identify and recognize outstanding talent and the training of international-caliber horses, and to prepare these horses for future careers at the FEI level and participation on U.S. High Performance teams.

If you are interested in bidding on one of the Selection Trials, please submit your letter of intent to USEF no later than June 17, 2011. Send bids to Jeannie Blancq, USEF Director of National Dressage, at jblancq@usef.org or by fax to (859) 231-6662.


Friday, May 27, 2011

KHP Cross-Country Schooling Days are Back!

Cross Country Schooling days have returned to the Kentucky Horse Park.  Schooling Days, a fundraiser of the Kentucky Horse Park Foundation, are a fantastic opportunity to school horses on the KHP course. Included in this opportunity are basic to advanced obstacles and "will attempt to mimic problem combinations  that occur regularly in competition."

Each session is $35 per horse and rider, with $20 of the fee considered a charitable donation.  Stabling is available, but not guaranteed, for all schooling sessions.  A $20/day trailer fee or a $75 seasonal trailer pass must be purchased at registration.

Trailer pass applications and advance registration may be downloaded at www.khpfoundation.org. Or you may register on-site.  For weather information visit the www.mseda.org website.

The schedule is as follows for the remaining season:

Wednesday May 15:  Session 1             8am -12 noon
                                   Session 2            12 noon - 4pm

Wednesday June 1:    Session 1            12 noon - 4pm
                                   Session 2            4pm - 8pm

Wednesday June 29:  Session 1            12 noon - 4pm
                                   Session 2            4pm - 8pm

Saturday August 13:  Session 1            8am - 12 noon
                                   Session 2            12noon - 4pm

Saturday September 10:  Session 1       8am - 12 noon
                                        Session 2       12 noon - 4pm

For stabling infomation call 859-259-4219
Seasonal passes may be purchased by calling 859-259-4225
Golf carts must purchase a $50 seasonal or $25 event golf cart license at registration. You may call 859-259-4225.

On-site registration is available

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Dressage: British Equestrian Asks - Just what do the Dressage public really want?

British Dressage is going places…medals galore, a vibrant membership from grass roots to the elite, loyal support, strong sponsor relations, world-class competitions, breeding programmes and a genuine feel-good factor. But who are our audience and what do they think of us?  Are we getting things right?  Could we do more?  Do we offer value for money in these difficult economic times?  How can we reach more grass roots competitors?  So many questions…but the Great British Dressage Survey 2011 will help find the answers.

Sport England’s Active People survey tells us in excess of 35,000 in Britain compete in Dressage.  Our 13,000 paid members equate to 37% of them but who are the remaining riders, why aren’t they members and how to reach them?   British Dressage launched a free Associate membership in  March 2010 and already there are now just under 13,000 members.   This will be one of the target areas for the survey as they have a strong interest in dressage but don’t compete in affiliated competition.  BD aims to find out what all these groups want from membership, competitions and training so that changes can be made.

British Dressage Chief Executive Amanda Bond commented; “Our associate membership has proved a popular initiative but we now need to learn more about them and what their needs are.  The management team at BD are currently reviewing all our membership packages and this Survey will help answer so many questions so that we then come up with suitable products.  We want dressage to be every rider’s first choice so it’s important to listen and provide what our audience needs.”

Win over £1250 worth of goodies with British Dressage

The Great British Dressage Survey is now live online and anyone with an interest in the sport is welcome to take part.  Supporters Dressage Deluxe and Cavallo have joined with British Dressage to provide a fantastic ‘Great British Kit Out’ prize for those who respond – a top-to-toe competition outfit, a year’s BD horse and rider membership and a VIP day out at the Dressage Deluxe National Championships in September.  The package is worth over £1250 so it’s well worth taking a few moments out to complete the survey.

British Dressage would love to hear from you – member or unaffiliated, owner or judge, sponsor or groom, volunteer or follower – visit http://surveys.customersmatter.co.uk/BD/bd2011.htm to take part today!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Momentous Milestone for Horse Research

From the British Equestrian Federation:

The country’s first free source of research summaries available for the public to use has reached its first milestone, having just passed its 2,000th research upload.

Whilst research might sound like a dry subject, people within the horse world may often have asked themselves whether anyone has ever looked into how much exercise a horse needs to reduce the risks of laminitis, or the effects of rein tension on the bit position in a horse’s mouth. Within the 2,000 research summaries (abstracts) on the British Equestrian Federation’s Researching Equines Database (BEFRED, www.befred.org), you can find the indicators.

The research featured on BEFRED ranges from work carried out by undergraduates to full-blown PhDs and the status attained by each research project (in terms of whether it has been reviewed by independent authorities or not) is always made clear.

Whether your interest lies in horse anatomy, health, breeding, tack or nutrition, you will almost certainly find some related research on BEFRED. This could steer you in your next direction when you are looking to gather information on pretty much anything to do with the horse world.
The British Equestrian Federation (www.bef.co.uk) is the National Governing Body for horse sports in the UK. BEF has funded the development of BEFRED (www.befred.org) from its inception as the former World Undergraduate Equine Research Database in 1999 by Prof Graham Suggett and Arne Suggett, with the strong support of Prof Pat Harris.

BEFRED’s continued development is managed by the BEF and overseen by the BEF’s Research Consultant Dr Georgina Crossman.

Research abstracts have been uploaded by over 45 research establishments and journals and the number currently sits at 2,053. The full research papers supporting the abstracts can be obtained, often at no charge, by following the links on BEFRED.


Monday, May 23, 2011

Eventing Mandatory Outing Information for 2011 Pan American Games By - Joanie Morris

May 23, 2011

Lexington, KY - The USEF has announced that the Mandatory Outing for Eventing for the 2011 Pan American Games will be held at the Richland Park Horse Trials in Richland, Michigan, August 25-28, 2011.

The event will run a separate division for the USEF Short Listed riders.  Their division will include the FEI CCI2* dressage test and the Advanced Cross Country and Jumping tracks. The USEF will name a partial Short List for the Games after the Bromont CCI, which will be held June 9-12, 2011. The Event at Rebecca Farm (July 21-24) is the last selection trial designated in the Selection Procedures, after which the final and complete Short List will be named.

Short Listed horse/rider combinations must compete in the Mandatory Outing, unless excused for veterinary, medical or exceptional circumstances.

The Pan American Games will be held in Guadalajara, Mexico this fall and eventing will be run at the CCI2* level. The eventing competition will take place from October 20-23, 2011.

Richland Park features Horse Trials from Novice to Advanced, a CIC3* and a CIC2* as well Young Horse Divisions.

Eventing: Saumur: Australian Eventers dominate in France

Australian riders finished first and second at the Saumur CCI3*, France, over the weekend.
Clayton Fredericks and Bendigo led the field of 56 competitors (from 11 countries) from start to finish, whilst compatriot Bill Levett finished second on One too Many NJ.
“It is a great result for Australia,” commented Prue Barrett, Eventing National Performance Director. “It is particularly good to see that these two accomplished riders have highly talented up-and-coming horses.”
12-year-old Bendigo, a German bred gelding by Contender is owned by Peta and Edwin McAuley, who are also the owners of Clayton’s 2008 Olympic mount Ben Along Time.  The McAuley’s live in Hong Kong and this was the first time they had been able to make a trip to watch Bendigo compete.
Fredericks and Bendigo scored 41.4 penalties in the Dressage to take the lead. Frenchman Aurélien Kahn was in second place on 44.00.  However, 5.2 time faults on the cross-country and 8 show jump faults dropped Kahn to 7th overall, the highest placed of the French riders.

Bendigo and Fredericks retained their lead with a clear cross-country round (adding 4.8 time penalties) followed by a faultless show jump round thus winning the title.

This is Fredericks’ second Saumur victory; he also won the event in 2006 on Ben Along Time.
Fredericks and Bendigo have a strong three-day event performance record.  In 2009 they won the Barroca d'Alva  CCI1* (in Alcochete, Portugal) and the Lignière CCI2* (FRA).  In 2011 they have been in excellent form, with a win in the Vale Sabroso CIC2* (POR) followed by 2nd  place in the Barroca d'Alva  CIC3*.

Fellow Australian, Bill Levett and One too Many NJ were in third place following the Dressage. A clear and quick cross-country round (adding just 2.2 time faults) moved them into 2nd  place.  The pair also jumped a clear show jump round – to retain their position.  One too Many NJ, owned by Gerry and Mary Kemp (GBR), is a 9-year-old bay Irish bred gelding by Chacoa. Levett and One too Many NJ have consistently placed in CIC3*classes, most recently placing 4th  at Burnham Market CIC3* (GBR) in April.

Great Britain’s Piggy French finished third riding DHI Topper.

Other Australian’s taking part in the competition were Brook Staples, who finished 14th on the 11-year-old Tover, Sam Griffiths finished 18th on Danaan Prince, Clayton Fredericks also rode Brookleigh – placing 10th after Dressage but they had some trouble on cross-country and Brookleigh was withdrawn before the show jumping.  Matt Ryan had two horses in the class, one of which he retired on course and the other was eliminated.

For full results please see http://www.saumur.org/cci/actualites-listes-et-resultats-cci3-gb.html

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Reining: World Cup: McCutcheon Golden at the 2011 FEI Reining World Final; Schmersal Brings Home Silver HorsePower, Inc.

May 22, 2011

Bökeberg, Sweden - Set in a beautiful arena and in front of a capacity crowd, the 2011 FEI World Reining Final was an electric atmosphere at Bökebergs Gård, Sweden, just outside of Malmö. The best reining horses in the world contested the highly coveted title and Tom McCutcheon of the United States was flawless in his effort to the top of the podium. 

Riding Darlins Not Painted to an extraordinary score of 229.5, McCutcheon - the double-Gold medalist at the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games - added another Gold medal to his impressive resume and continues his dominance of international high-performance reining events. Darlins Not Painted is owned by Turnabout Farm.

In the Silver medal position, also from the U.S., Craig Schmersal aboard Miss Lil Addy Tude, owned by KC Performance Horses, gave the crowd a thrill with an incredible score of 227.5. Schmersal, showing on the mare at only the second FEI Reining event, had nothing but praise for his mount and the attractive American Quarter Horse was one of the crowd favorites from the first horse inspection.

Rounding out the medals podium was the always-strong Bernard Fonck, representing Belgium and riding Great Sunburst. The pair earned a Bronze position for their effort and a score of 226.5. Great Sunburst is an American Quarter Horse and is owned by Manuel Bonzano of Italy.

In the restricted division, it was Rieky Young of The Netherlands in the Gold medal position riding Brady Chex, owned by Brady Bunch, with a score of 220. In Silver, Nico Hörmann of Germany aboard Custom Blackberry, owned by Riccardo Abati, turned in a solid score of 217.5. And in Bronze, Fenna Elzinga of Denmark rode her own Smoking Kills to a score of 216.5.

Long lines of excited fans queued up outside Bökeberg arena and the reining athletes did not disappoint. Spotless runs and precise maneuvers made the scores very high and the crowd rewarded each rider with jubilant praise. The event was declared a success by organizers and has received very positive feedback from attendees, athletes and sponsors. The people of Sweden made each and every visitor feel welcome, and the facilities, field of play and event planning were lauded by the top riders.

Reining is a sport born of the American West with maneuvers similar to those a working ranch horse might have been asked to perform on day-to-day tasks. Today, the sport has exploded around the world as the level of technical sophistication and horsemanship style has evolved into an intricate and beautiful display of power and finesse.

Now represented on six continents and in more than 40 nations, the sport of reining is an internationally-approved event under the FEI, the international governing body for equestrian sport. The incredible success of the sport at the recent 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) gave Reining significant momentum for continued growth worldwide.

ENDS

The FEI Reining World Final official event website is available at www.Malmo2011.com and includes complete results, competitor resources, links to videos of the top runs and much more. For more information on the 2011 FEI Reining World Final, please contact Brad Ettleman of HorsePower, Inc., the official Organizing Committee, by e-mail at Brad@HPowerInc.com, or by phone at: 720.982.3574.

The Fédération Équestre Internationale is the single international governing body for equestrian sport and the official Federation reporting to the International Olympic Committee on behalf of equestrianism. The primary mission of the FEI is to advance the orderly growth of equestrian sport worldwide by promoting, regulating and administering humane and sportsmanlike international competition in the traditional equestrian disciplines. For more information about the FEI, go to: www.FEI.org.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Eventing: Rolex Kentucky: The Press Take A Course Walk -- From the Back of a Horse


A group of 12 riders toured the 2011 Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event**** cross-country course on Thursday, April 28 on the Rolex Ride The Course media trail ride.     Photo by Allen MacMillan/MacMillan Photography
Writer and Photographer Kim MacMillan took a 2011 Rolex Kentucky course walk -- on horseback at the invitation of Rolex Kentucky title sponsor Rolex Watch. She and several of our fellow members of the working press were invited to take a ride with USEF President and Canadian Chef d'Equipe David O'Connor, Course Designer Derek DiGrazia, and 4* rider Bobby Costello. With a few photos and a video clip shot by Kim's husband Allen to serve as proof that some members of the press can ride, Kim and the others learned that the course looks a bit different when the view is from the back of a horse.

 The e-mail in my inbox said “Rolex Ride the Course invitation” - it was from Merrick Haydon at Revolution Sports Marketing Group in England, the marketing firm for Rolex Watch. I was intrigued and opened it to find I had been invited as one of a select group of journalists to ride the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event**** course to see the obstacles from the perspective of the rider. I couldn’t resist replying that I would be happy to join the ride.

Mother Nature did her best to do away with the plans for the ride, which was originally scheduled for Wednesday, April 27, the day before the start of dressage. The ride had to be postponed because of tornado watches and warnings in the area on Wednesday, but immediately following the press conference for the first day of dressage on Thursday, we were whisked away in golf carts from the media center to the Head of the Lake obstacle where we met our mounts - horses and ponies from the Kentucky Horse Park (KHP) trail ride string.

Kim MacMillan and Pocahontas stand near four-star rider Robert Costello as they listen to David O’Connor talk about the Head of the Lake obstacle on the 2011 Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event****.   Photo by Allen MacMillan/MacMillan Photography
As the wrangler matched us with our horses, she pointed at me and said, “You, the short lady,” with a smile and I looked around to find she was addressing me as I was, in fact, the shortest, and probably the oldest at “50-something”, rider in the group. She paired me with a wonderful, mild-mannered Appaloosa named Pocahontas, the only mare in the group, primarily because she was wearing a western saddle with the shortest stirrups.

The horse matching continued with our host USEF President and Olympic gold medalist David O’Connor being paired with a red roan named Scout and fellow four-star rider and our co-host Robert (Bobby) Costello getting the ride on a slightly frisky dark horse. After all of us, two hosts, three KHP wranglers and seven journalists, were assigned horses, we got underway with a train of golf carts with Haydon, a photographer and television camera following us. O’Connor led and as he turned Scout he said, “Welcome to the first annual Rolex media trail ride.”

David O’Connor mounts up to start the Rolex Ride The Course media trail ride on his horse Scout. Photo by Allen MacMillan/MacMillan Photography
We first turned our attention to the Head of the Lake complex (jump numbers 18 a-b, 19 a-b and 20) which due to the excessive amounts of rain (Lexington had the most rainfall in April on record since they started keeping track in the 1800’s) was quite deep. Karen O’Connor in her Wellies waded out as far into the Lake as she could without overflowing her boots to show us the depth and David and Bobby discussed the approach and options. They were trying to let water out in order to lower the depth to an acceptable level by Saturday.


Video by Allen MacMillan - Karen O’Connor in the Head of the Lake and David O’Connor and Bobby Costello with journalists on trail ride.

As we rode the course and I looked at the jumps through Pocahontas’ ears, I couldn’t help being glad I was a journalist and not a four-star rider! It was an interesting challenge for all of us, many trying to take notes with pen and paper or snapshots with small cameras in an effort to try to remember enough details to write about our unique experience.

Then we went up the hill to the east of the course and stopped at number 11 a-b-c-d, the Sunken Road, normally a 3’9” jump over rails, then down a 3’7” bank into a dry road bed, then up a 3’7” bank and over another 4’7” brushed bench, but now also a water obstacle with water rushing down the sunken road in the middle. (Later on Saturday I would be stationed there to photograph in the morning and it had only a little water in it then.)

We continued on to number 15 a-b the double corners, a set of 3’11”open corners that O’Connor and Costello talked quite a bit about from their viewpoints as riders and as coaches for other riders. The corners were assembled with frangible pins. O’Connor and Costello also fielded questions about number 13 a-b, the Land Rover Hollow, which was further to the east, but due to the soft course and late hour, we did not ride out that far.

David O’Connor mounted on Scout (red roan on right) addresses the journalists on the Rolex Ride The Course media ride on April 28, 2011. Photo by Allen MacMillan/MacMillan Photography
Our trail ride then turned back west and we stopped at number 7 a-b-c, the Bridgestone Park Question, which was a set of 3’8” vertical rails, then a 5’3” wide coffin (ditch) and a 3’10” cabin jump after the coffin. The coffin was completely obscured by water and they had a sump pump working - it had been going for over a day at that point and would continue to work until Saturday morning. During this stop on the ride a journalist asked O’Connor about whether or not they would leave this obstacle on the course or remove it if the water didn’t go down enough for the horses to see the coffin. He replied if the water did not go down it may have to be removed; happily through huge amounts of work on the part of the course crew and with Mother Nature slowing down the rain (although we did have some more rain on Thursday evening), the Bridgestone Park Question did remain a part of the course on  Saturday.

In our last few minutes on the ride I asked O’Connor and Costello what obstacles would cause them concern if they were riding the course. They had slightly different answers, but both agreed their plan would depend on the horse they were riding at the time.

We then wandered down the hill to the steeplechase infield and discussed the infield water and other obstacles, after which our media ride sadly ended at the water truck filling spot on Nina Bonnie Boulevard. We walked back to the media center in the covered arena, a bunch of happy journalist saddle bums!

The concept of riding the course with the four-star riders gave the questions and answers a less formal and more hands-on feel. It was different from the formal press conference setting and gave us all a bond because we were riding together. My thanks to Rolex Watch and Revolution Sports, Mr. O’Connor,  Mr. Costello, Mr. di Grazia and Mr. Haydon, the Kentucky Horse Park staff and especially Pocahontas. It was an experience I will never forget.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Dressage: USEF Announces Dates and Location for 2011 Collecting Gaits Farm/USEF Dressage Festival of Champions By Joanie Morris

Lexington, KY - The United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) has announced the dates and location for the 2011 Collecting Gaits Farm/USEF Dressage Festival of Champions which will also serve as the USEF Selection Trials for the US Dressage Team for the 2011 Pan American Games.

The competition will be held over four days, September 8-11, 2011, at the USET Foundation Headquarters in Gladstone, NJ.

The best horse/rider combinations in the following divisions will vie for national dressage championships: Grand Prix, Intermediaire I, Young Adult 'Brentina Cup,' Young Rider and Junior. For the first time in 2011, a National Pony Dressage Championship will also be run. 

The Intermediaire I National Championship will also serve as the USEF Selection Trial for the US Dressage Team for the 2011 Pan American Games.

The Pan American Games will run in Guadalajara, Mexico in October, the U.S. Dressage Team will be looking to repeat their Gold medal effort from 2007.  

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Compounded Horse Medications: Legal and Ethical Issues Free Webinar at TheHorse.com, June 1

Lexington, Ky. (May 17, 2011)—Compounded medications fulfill a critically important role in horse health care. While many of these tailored medications are prepared appropriately and lawfully, other compounds aren't what their manufacturers claim they are; several investigations have found that compounded medications can contain more or less active ingredient than intended, resulting in problems ranging from lack of efficacy to death of horses receiving the medication.

When are compounded medications appropriate, and when are they illegal? What can tip you off that a compounded medication might not be safe for your horse? Find out in TheHorse.com's free webinar on compounded horse medications on June 1, 8-9 p.m. EST (brought to you by Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica).

Presenter: Scott Stanley, PhD, Professor of Equine Analytical Chemistry at the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine, has focused his research efforts in the fields of equine analytical chemistry and pharmacology, and he has published more than 100 scientific research papers on topics of drug detection, pharmacokinetics, pharmacodynamics, and veterinary compounding. His current research interests relate to the use of biomarkers for the detection of biopharmaceutical agents. Stanley will also be available to answer questions online via live text chat during this event, and he will be assisted by:

John Tuttle, DVM, Equine Technical Manager at Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica. After spending 15 years in mixed and equine-only private veterinary practices, he entered industry veterinary work as a technical services veterinarian with Fort Dodge Animal Health, followed by his current position at Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica. His main interests include equine preventive medicine and herd health.

Sign up now for this Webinar at www.TheHorse.com/Webinars. Your registration allows you to watch the video presentation and ask questions live during the presentation, and you can submit your questions via e-mail prior to the Webinar to be answered during the live event. We hope you can join us!

Any questions about the webinar can be directed to THWebinars@TheHorse.com.

Minimum System Requirements:

·         256 megabytes (MB) of RAM; 512 MB recommended.

·         Broadband Internet connection or access to a high-speed network highly recommended.

·         Speakers/headphones on your computer to hear the audio.

·         Flash Player 8 or higher.

KHC CONTINUES TO COORDINATE KENTUCKY SUPPORT TO HORSES AFFECTED BY NATURAL DISASTERS

Lexington, KY, May 17, 2011 – The Kentucky Horse Council (KHC) provides a central coordination point for Kentucky equine rescue efforts to support horses affected by hurricanes, tornados, floods, fire and other natural disasters. KHC has experience responding to equine crisis through the US Disaster Relief Fund and the Save Our Horses (SoHo) Fund.

“Supporting the efforts of other states to address the needs of horses impacted by natural disaster is the best way we can help them recover.  By coordinating fund raising efforts within the state, we enable Kentuckians to show their concern for all horses,” remarked Anna Zinkhon, President of the Kentucky Horse Council.

The Kentucky Horse Council has been speaking with representatives from the Alabama Horse Council regarding the extensive tornado damage and destruction across the state.  The Alabama Horse Council is coordinating efforts to provide feed for those horses affected by the raging storms and they need financial assistance.

Through the US Disaster Relief Fund, the Kentucky Horse Council will purchase hay needed to care for horses that have either been displaced by the storms, or whose owners are unable to care for them as a result of the storms.   

“Several individuals have been going door to door checking on horse owners.  This is a really time consuming task that only reaches a few affected individuals.  The goal of the Alabama Horse Council, at this time, is to organize a means for all affected Alabama horse owners to get the help they need following a standard procedure,” commented Dr. Gary Koepp, Alabama Horse Council Disaster Coordinator.

Currently the Alabama Horse Council is working with the Department of Agriculture and Alabama Extension to identify the best method by which to provide assistance to horse owners affected by the tornados.

When any state needs assistance due to a natural disaster, KHC notifies its members and the Kentucky horse community and begins the process of responding to the needs of the affected horses, typically by purchasing feed which the local response agencies then distributes to affected horses.

For current information or to donate visit www.kentuckyhorse.org/disaster-relief/.

ABOUT THE KENTUCKY HORSE COUNCIL - The Kentucky Horse Council is a non-profit organization dedicated, through education and leadership, to the protection and development of the Kentucky equine community. The Kentucky Horse Council provides educational programs and information, outreach and communication to Kentucky horse owners and enthusiasts, equine professional networking opportunities through KENA, trail riding advocacy, health and welfare programs, and personal liability insurance and other membership benefits.  The specialty Kentucky Horse Council license plate, featuring a foal lying in the grass, provides the primary source of revenue for KHC programs.

Reining: World: McCutcheon and Schmersal to represent U.S. at Inaugural FEI World Reining Final - By Joanie Morris

Lexington, KY - The inaugural FEI World Reining Final gets underway in Malmo, Sweden this week as part of a four-day reining event at Bökeberg, Skåne. The United States will be represented by two of its top reining athletes, Tom McCutcheon and Craig Schmersal.

World Champion and Team Gold medalist from the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, McCutcheon heads to Malmo with the momentum of a banner year at his back. He was named 2010 USEF Equestrian of the Year and his WEG horse, Gunners Special Nite, was crowned 2010 Farnam/USEF Horse of the Year. Gunners Special Nite won't be making this trip, so McCutcheon will be relying on Darlins Not Painted, a 9-year-old American Paint Horse mare owned by Turnabout Farm.

"I always look forward to the opportunity to represent the U.S.," said McCutcheon. "It's always great to show in front of European reining fans, they're loud and they love reining!"

McCutcheon will be joined by WEG Teammate and Individual Silver medalist, Craig Schmersal, who will ride Miss Lil Addy Tude in her first overseas appearance. The 9-year-old American Quarter Horse mare just finished second in the CRI5* at the Ariat Kentucky Reining Cup, proving she can be a formidable opponent in a big venue.

The Final in Malmo marks another important opportunity for the U.S. Reiners to prove their prowess on the world stage. Each National Federation is only invited to send two athletes (with one horse each) to contend for $100,000 in prize money. The one-round event takes place at 19:00 CEST on Saturday May 21.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Nations Cup: THE SUPER-EIGHT LINE UP FOR THE FEI NATIONS CUP™ 2011 SEASON by Louise Parkes


FEI NATIONS CUP™ - 2011 SEASON PREVIEW
Lausanne (SUI), 10 May 2011

FEI TV: enjoy LIVE programming, highlights, interviews and archive footage at www.feitv.org

The FEI Nations Cup™ Top League series this year reverts to the eight-leg, eight-team format that was originally established in 2003, and next Friday the 2011 season is set to kick off at La Baule in France.

The most enduring of all FEI disciplines, Nations Cup jumping has stirred the hearts and souls of competitors and spectators alike for more than a century now, and the air of excitement and expectation ahead of the new season is tangible.

Visiting many of the most prestigious venues on the international equestrian circuit, the FEI Nations Cup™ has a cachet all of its own. It is always an honour to be selected to represent your country, and riders proudly fly their national flags in this annual battle for supremacy. But it’s not just about which country fields the strongest sides, this series is also a test of the leadership skills of the all-important Chefs d'Equipe, and a test of the character, courage and determination of the competitors who must ride the waves of the fluctuating fortunes that always accompany competitions of this calibre.

Some of the most thrilling moments come not from the winning side, but from the teams that are fighting to stay in the game and avoid relegation. This season the competing nations are France, Germany, USA, Ireland, Great Britain, The Netherlands, Belgium and Denmark.

TOUGH CONTEST
Last season saw a particularly tough contest because four teams dropped down to the Promotional League in order to re-create the eight-nation format for 2011.  This time around just two nations will face demotion, but even the defending champions from France know how quickly things can go wrong.

When the Samsung Super League was first established in 2003 the French were the dominant force, taking the title in both of the first two seasons. But their performances then deteriorated and they suffered relegation, only to return with renewed vigour to sweep the honours again during the Meydan-sponsored seasons in 2009 and 2010. There is little doubt that the host nation will be the ones to beat this Friday on their home turf, but Chef d'Equipe, Henk Nooren, is taking no chances as he sends out his top-guns to make the best possible start.

His squad includes the man who currently tops the Rolex Rankings, World No 1 and reigning FEI European Champion Kevin Staut, along with Simon Delestre, Penelope Leprevost, Olivier Guillon and the living French legend Michel Robert. Just four riders will line out for each team in Friday's two-round competition which will only be extended to include a third round if two or more nations are tied at the end of round two.

World No. 4 and 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ gold medallist Marcus Ehning heads up the German squad that also includes Philipp Weishaupt, Thomas Muhlbauer, Carsten-Otto Nagel and Heiko Schmidt, while the British side will be selected from Nick Skelton, Peter Charles, David McPherson, Robert Smith and William Funnell. The heavyweight Dutch squad consists of Marc Houtzager, Vincent Voorn, Albert Zoer, Jur Vrieling and Eric van der Vleuten, while America's George Morris has Ashlee Bond, Rich Fellers, Margie Engle, Charlie Jayne and Christine McCrea on call-up. Few will have forgotten the spectacular performances of Bond and her lovely chestnut Cadett who produced three sensational double-clears in the early stages of the 2009 season.

ON-FORM
Robert Splaine's Irish team includes the on-form Billy Twomey, currently at No. 7 in the Rolex Rankings and winner of last Saturday's leg of the Global Champions Tour at Valencia in Spain. He is joined by Cian O'Connor, Shane Carey, Cameron Hanley and Shane Sweetnam, and the Irish can always be relied upon to fight the good fight under any circumstances.

Belgium returns to the FEI Nations Cup™ family this year after some time in the shadows. They clawed their way back to top-level competition with a clear victory in last season's Promotional League, and with the experience and expertise of 2010 world champion Philippe Le Jeune and 2006 world champion Jos Lansink along with the talent of Dirk Demeersman, Judy-Ann Melchior and Jerome Guery they should be a force to be reckoned with. They will also be hungry to show that their country deserves its place amongst the elite nations of the world once again.

Denmark completes the line-up, having earned a spot in the top-level league this season through victory at the Promotional League Final in Barcelona, Spain last September. Emilie Martinsen, Torben Frandsen, Henrik Gundersen, Thomas Sandgaard and Tina Lund will be facing a whole new standard of sport when they ride into the La Baule arena next Friday, but the word on the street is that this is a side that should not be under-estimated.

SET THE STAGE
Friday's competition will set the stage for the season, but there is a long summer of intense excitement ahead as the teams move on to Rome (ITA), St Gallen (SUI), Falsterbo (SWE), Aachen (GER), Hickstead (GBR), Dublin (IRL) and finally Rotterdam (NED) before the destination of the FEI Nations Cup™ trophy for 2011 is decided at the end of August.

Join us as we witness the highs and lows, the delights and disappointments, the dramas, twists and turns of another exceptional sporting tournament at the end of which the FEI Nations Cup™ trophy will be presented to the best jumping nation in the world.  You can follow it all LIVE on FEI TV - www.feitv.org

For further information on the first leg of the 2011 FEI Nations Cup™ series at La Baule, consult www.labaule-cheval.com

Facts and Figures
102 years of team competition - the FEI Nations Cup™ series is striding purposefully into its second century.
8 top nations - France, USA, Germany, Ireland, The Netherlands, Great Britain, Belgium and Denmark.
8 competitions at 8 world-class venues -La Baule in France, Rome in Italy, St Gallen in Switzerland, Falsterbo in Sweden, Aachen in Germany, Hickstead in Great Britain, Dublin in Ireland and Rotterdam in The Netherlands.
4 riders per team.
2 rounds of jumping - and possibly a third-round jump-off against the clock if teams are tied at the end of the second round.
2 new nations for 2011 - Denmark and Belgium - who emerged from the 2010 Promotional League.
1 title-holder - the French have been the dominant force since the Top League FEI Nations Cup™ concept was first devised in 2003 - they were crowned champions for the first two Samsung-sponsored seasons in 2003 and 2004, and again under the Meydan banner in 2009 and 2010.

FEI NATIONS CUP™
The FEI Nations Cup™ is a five-star competition in which official teams representing nations compare their merit. At each event the teams gain points according to their placing. At the end of the 2011 season the team with the highest points wins the FEI Nations Cup™ and the two teams with the lowest points will be relegated to the FEI Nations Cup Promotional League. The highest placed team from the 2011 FEI Nations Cup Promotional League Final and the highest placed Team on the FEI European Nations Cup Promotional League standings immediately prior to the 2011 FEI Nations Cup Promotional League Final will join the FEI Nations Cup™ Top League for 2012.

FEI Nations Cup™ 2011 calendar:
La Baule (FRA), Friday 13 May; Rome (ITA), Friday 27 May; St Gallen (SUI), Friday 3 June; Falsterbo (SWE), Friday 8 July; Aachen (GER), Thursday 14 July; Hickstead (GBR), Friday 29 July; Dublin (IRL); Friday 5 August.; Rotterdam (NED), Friday 26 August.

Eventing: Sydney: Johnstone sets the target with double Down Under

 Clarke Johnstone on Orient Express wins again in Sydney at the second leg of the FEI World Cup™ Eventing 2011. Photo: Rachel Smith/FEI


FEI PRESS RELEASE

Lausanne (SUI), 9 May 2011

As anticipated, Antipodean riders seized the chance to steal a march on their northern hemisphere colleagues in the 2011 FEI World Cup™ Eventing series by targeting the second leg, at Sydney’s Weekend of Equestrian World Cups (AUS).

New Zealander Clarke Johnstone followed up his victory at Kihikihi (NZL) last month by travelling across the Tasman Sea to pick up another win aboard Orient Express, his team bronze medal-winning mount at last year’s Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Kentucky (USA).

Only three riders have won two FEI World Cup events in a season: Michael Jung (GER) last year, Megan Jones (AUS) in 2009, and Nicolas Touzaint (FRA) in 2007. Johnstone’s two wins, plus a third at Kihikihi, gives him an impressive tally of 119 points.

With riders’ three best results counting towards the final rankings, which carry a first prize of €28,000 the New Zealander could prove hard to beat. He has further chances to improve his tally as he sets off for Britain this month to further his ambition of selection for the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Cross-Country at Sydney produced a thrillingly tight finish, with just 1.6 penalties covering the top three riders. Olympic silver medallist Shane Rose (AUS) was in pole position on Taurus, the horse on which he was also placed fourth at Kihikihi, but two fences down dropped them to eventual third.

In a repeat of Kihikihi, Chris Burton (AUS) finished second to Johnstone, moving up a place with a clear Jumping round on Holstein Park Leilani, the horse on which he made his Australian squad debut last year. However, Burton, fastest of the day across country on Newsflash, picks up valuable extra points for fifth place on that horse and is now second in the FEI World Cup™ Eventing rankings, 11 points in arrears.

Despite his nerves, Johnstone managed to keep a cool head and produce a clear Jumping round to clinch victory. “It was all pretty nerve-racking,” he admitted. “We gave one jump a little rub and because I was so nervous it probably wasn’t my most stylish jump ever!”

Summing up his overall performance, Johnstone said: “In the Dressage, I missed one flying change, but ‘Blue’ (Orient Express) went really well and he was just fantastic across country. It was fast and furious to get the optimum time because the track is hilly and twisty, but we rode it last year and almost got the time, so I knew what I had to do.”

Sixteen combinations went clear across country, but the overnight Dressage leader, Tim Boland (AUS), fell foul of fence 14, correctly predicted by former Australian team coach Wayne Roycroft to be the most difficult fence, a sequence of angled apexes. There were nine stops in total here, including for Shane Rose on his other horse, APH Moritz. Chris Burton also had a mishap with his second string, Haruzac, recording a fall on the flat at a corner. Twenty of the original 30 starters completed the competition.

The FEI World Cup™ Eventing action now moves across the world to Great Britain, where northern hemisphere-based riders will have their first chance to climb the rankings at Chatsworth (May 14-15).

Results

1 Clarke Johnstone/Orient Express (NZL) 45.4 + 0 + 0 = 45.4

2 Chris Burton/Holstein Park Leilani (AUS) 45.9 + 0 + 0 = 45.9

3 Shane Rose/Taurus (AUS) 44.4 + 0 + 8 = 52.3

4 Stuart Tinney/Vettori AUS) 46.3 + 6.4 + 0 = 52.7

5 Chris Burton/Newsflash (AUS) 53.5 + 0 + 0 = 53.5

6 Megan Jones/Kirby Park Allofasudden (AUS) 50.0 + 2.8 + 4 = 56.8

7 Craig Barrett/Sandhills Brillaire (AUS) 56.7 + 4.4 + 0 = 61.1

8 Soigne Jackson/Gold (AUS) 63.2 + 0 + 4 = 67.2



FEI World Cup™ Eventing Standings (after 2 of 7 events)

1 Clarke Johnstone (NZL) 118

2 Chris Burton (AUS) 108

3 Shane Rose (AUS) 70

4 Stuart Tinney (AUS) 34

5 Brent Jury (NZL) 32

6 Megan Jones (AUS) 30

7 Craig Barrett (AUS) 28

8 Soigne Jackson (AUS) 26

9 Heath RYAN(AUS) 2

10 Tallara Barwick (AUS) 2

11 Crystal Conning (AUS) 2

12 Wilhelm Enzinger (AUS) 2

13 Cassie Lowe (AUS) 2

14 Simon Gordon (NZL) 2



FEI World Cup™ Eventing Calendar 2011

Kihikihi (NZL) 7-10 April

Sydney (AUS) 6-8 May

Chatsworth (GBR) 14-15 May

Strzegom (POL) 23-26 June

Minsk (BLR) 13-17 July

Malmö (SWE) 5-7 August

Le Pin au Haras (FRA), 18-21 August 2011



Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Vaulting: Double delight for WEG Gold Medalist Joanne Eccles

Leading equestrian vaulter Joanne Eccles proved worthy of her European and World Champion rankings this weekend (30 April – 1 May) – as she picked up the title in the CVI** Ermelo in Holland, making it two international titles in a fortnight!

Joanne (22) from Tillicoultry, Scotland took the senior female class with her sister Hannah just missing out on second place by just 0.16 of a point. Lunged by their father John Eccles on WH Bentley, the girls also won the pairs class.

Brogan Moffat and Georgia Cox travelled out to compete in the junior individual class; they both vaulted on WVC Anton, lunged by John Eccles, and finished 23rd and 30th respectively.

“This was a great competition,” said Lucy Bell, chef d’equipe of British Equestrian Vaulting, “I’m so pleased for all the girls – and to see Joanne win again is a fantastic achievement and is great for British Vaulting.”