Friday, September 24, 2021

Rubinstein for Foundation Friday

Enjoy one of Warmblood Stallions of North America’s more popular Foundation Friday posts!  Every other Friday we will be featuring a foundation sire - one who has been influential in the development of warmblood breeds. We pull from the incredible archive of The Horse Magazinepublished by Chris Hector of Australia. Thank you, Chris, for permission to draw on your expertise!

171 cm
Breeder: Herbert de Baey

Rubinstein was born into a dressage Royal Family. His dam was Antine, one of the three daughters of the mating of the Thoroughbred stallion Angelo and Dodona (the two male foals from this pairing were the Olympic dressage stars Amon and Ahlerich). Rubinstein’s sire, Romadour II, is one of the most significant of modern Westfalen sires.

Rubinstein was ridden in his early tests by Detlev Nesemann, and the pair were Reserve Champions in the Six-Year-Old dressage class at the 1992 Bundeschampionate. The ride then went to that gifted rider/trainer Martina Hannöver, and together they won ten of his eleven starts at S-level. 

Rubinstein last appeared in the Hanoverian Stallion Book in 2005, where he is recorded as having 1502 progeny in competition for winnings of €1,457,560. He had 133 S level dressage competitors – and just 3 advanced jumpers.

To read the full article as it was published on The Horse Magazine website - along with full pedigree of Rubinstein, click here. The publisher and creator of this incredible resource, Christopher Hector, is the author of The Making of the Warmblood Horse.

Looking for the exciting bloodlines of Rubinstein? There are several stallion descendants of Rubinstein in North America. Click on the following links to read about each of the ones on

Cum Laude
Gallant Reflection HU
Pikko del Cerro HU
Royal Prince
Royal Prinz
Royal Tourmalet SPF
Uno Don Diego
Wiittala Theodor

Friday, September 17, 2021

Orbetello Sails Through Hanoverian Approval with Top Scores

Orbetello and Paul O'Shea (IRL). Photo by SportFot
Union - KY– Sept. 17, 2021 – Oldenburg stallion Orbetello (Orlando x Landgraf I/Cor de la Bryère) is now a fully-approved Hanoverian breeding stallion, adding to his existing approvals with the GOV, OHBS and sBs. His stallion inspection by the American Hanoverian Society, which has full reciprocity with the German Hanoverian Verband, means that he is also HV and Rhinelander approved.

Barbara Schmidt, DVM, stands Orbetello at her Kentucky-based Bridlewood Farm. On Aug. 18, 2021, she presented Orbetello for his American Hanoverian Society Stallion Inspection and he earned approval with excellent scores. The judges awarded an 8 for both his overall conformation and type. Notably, his hind leg rated a 9, as did his head and neck. He received 8s for walk and canter.

"Whether breeding for jumping or dressage, consider Orbetello for your mare in 2022," Schmidt said. "He is known to pass his jumping talents to his foals and his powerful hind leg will complement dressage offspring. Eventing breeders would benefit from his power in all three phases."

Orbetello maintained top-level performance during his show-jumping career. At his stallion approval with the German Oldenburg Verband when he was 2, he scored the highest free jumping marks in history.

Orbetello's physical type, bloodlines, athleticism and fine mind contributed to his success as a world-class competitor. He proved himself at 1.60m with three FEI riders, most recently with Paul O'Shea (IRL). Orbetello is beloved by his owner, Cynthia Hampton (Hampton Farms LLC), who also competed him in the amateur divisions. Retired at 18, he is perfectly sound, with no history of soft tissue injuries. His soundness is a tribute to his outstanding conformation.

"He is a once-in-a-lifetime horse," Hampton said.

Orbetello offers a second-to-none temperament, outstanding rideability, excellent gaits, superior jumping technique and scope – traits he passes on to his foals.

"We welcome visitors to Bridlewood Farm to meet Orbetello," Schmidt said. "He is even more impressive in person!"
Orbetello and Cynthia Hampton. Photo by EQ Media
Bridlewood Farm, located in Union, Kentucky, between Cincinnati and Lexington, is the base for Barbara Schmidt DVM's equine veterinary practice, with an emphasis on equine reproduction.Dr. Schmidt brings over 35 years of warmblood breeding knowledge, with her equine veterinary experience complementing Bridlewood Farm's long-established breeding program. She enjoys serving as a resource for breeders throughout the breeding process.

Orbetello is Bridlewood's first international jumper stallion. They currently stand their own Dacaprio, and their resident stallions include Leatherdale Farms' Fairbanks, First Dance, Hampton, and E.H. Herzensdieb.

For breeding information contact Dr. Barbara Schmidt by text or voice  at  859-393-9782.
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Wednesday, September 15, 2021

2021 USHJA Young Jumper Championship Concludes with 5-, 6-, 7- and 8-Year-Old Final Competition


Henrietta, by Contefino, Champion of the 6-year-old division and Best US-Bred Horse

Traverse City, Mich. – Sept. 12, 2021 – The 2021 USHJA Young Jumper Championships concluded on a high note Sunday with the Final Competition for Five, Six, Seven, and Eight-Year-Old age groups. In the Six-Year-Old finale, it was Soehnke Theymann who rode Henrietta to the top overall honors after producing multiple clear efforts throughout the three days of competition.

Soehnke Theymann and Henrietta, photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

Set in the Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel International Ring, athletes and their six-year-old horses made their way under the arches to compete one last time. Following a victory in Thursday’s Six-Year-Old Young Jumper Championship Second Qualifier, Theymann and Henrietta (Contefino X O Black Cherry) topped the leaderboard heading into the final day. Two clear rounds and a fourth place finish in the Final solidified the German’s spot leading the victory gallop. Bred and owned by Platinum Capital Management USA LLC, Henrietta was awarded with the best U.S. Bred Horse at the conclusion of the division, and Platinum Capital Management USA LLC received the U.S. Breeder Bonus.

The overall second place honors were given to QBS Equestrian’s Doonaveeragh Balou (Wild Balou Bill X Doonaveeragh Seabrae), who was piloted by Matthew Williams and bred by Ivan Gardiner. Rounding out the top three was Catherine Tyree aboard QBS Equestrian’s Cantalupe V/D Holtenhoeve (Canaletto Z X Polarsterne Van de Richter), bred by Luk Bloemen.

Jill Gaffney and FF Loyalty, photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

Kicking off the day of competition in the Jumper Annex Ring, Five-Year-Old Young Jumpers took to the arena for the finale of their division. Solid performances throughout the three days of sport led Jill Gaffney and Freestyling Farms’ FF Loyalty (Ogano Sitte X Hoblesse) to the overall victory and the Best Young Horse Award. The overall second place honors went to Gail Dady’s Tornado PJ (Taalex X Crispy Jo PJ), bred by Dr. Jacobs, with Agustin Rosales in the irons. Third place went to Patricia Kobble’s Chin-Chimney (Coeur D’Hannah X Quendollien). Bred by Kobble herself, Chin Chimney was piloted by Samantha Schaefer to ultimately take home the best U.S. Bred Horse award and earn Kobble the U.S. Breeder Bonus for the Five-Year-Old Young Jumper Championships.

Jill Gaffney and FF Blade Runner, photo by Andrew Ryback Photography

In the Seven-Year-Old Final, Gaffney and Freestyling Farms’s FF Blade Runner (Jordan Z X Bright Eyes) took home the championship honors out of the 15 horse-and-rider combinations. Reserve honors were awarded to Sandra Dalman and Dalman Show Jumping’s Elite Girl (Elvis Ter Putte X Fontarina), bred by Festut Lewitz. Completing the overall podium was Quentin Judge and Double H Farm’s HH Janneke B (Floris X Golden Girl B), bred by G.F. Brinkman.

The final age group to compete in the Turtle Creek Casino & Hotel International Ring were the Eight-Year Old jumpers. A field of 10 horse-and-rider combinations competed over the same course as the seven-year-old division, but with jumps that were raised to meet the standard of 1.45m. Filippo Pignatti took home the blue ribbon in the final class of the division on Ideaal ES (Ukato X Renata), owned by Take the High Road LLC. Brooke Kemper dawned the division championship title after her cumulative performances on MTM Kappa Kappa Gamma (Casiro X Sue), overtaking Filippo Pignatti and Ideaal ES, who were awarded with the reserve champion tricolor honors. American professional, Andrew Welles was the overall third place finisher with the Itasca Group’s, Idol H&H (Action Breaker X Mantana). Sandra Dalman was the proud recipient of the Best U.S. Bred Horse award in the division, with Dalman Show Jumping’s Drake (Dulf Van Den Bisschop X Caretina 3).

Brooke Kemper and MTM Kappa Kappa Gamma

Rounding out the afternoon of awards, Trevor and Jill Gaffney of Freestyling Farms LLC received the Leading Owner award, presented to the top-performing owner from all age groups. The Leading U.S. Breeder amongst all five age groups emerged as Muny Sunk Stables.

Trevor Gaffney receives the Leading Owner Award

In its first year in Traverse City, the 2021 USHJA Young Jumper Championships saw unprecedented success. Horses from five to eight years old competed over a three-round format that featured First and Second Qualifiers, culminating in a Final set from 1.15-1.40m based on each age section, as well as a Consolation Classic for horses not competing in the Final. In addition to prize money through fifteenth place, incentives and bonus prize money were offered for United States breeders and American-bred horses.


Soehnke Theymann & Henrietta - USHJA Young Jumper Championships 6-Year-Old Final from Traverse City Horse Shows on Vimeo.

On Henrietta:
“Henrietta is bred in California by Platinum Capital Management. The mother was a grand prix horse, Black Cherry, and the dad is Contefino. She was born and raised in Thousand Oaks, California and I got the ride last summer. I did not have a lot of expectations because she was a little on the small side and lazy on the flat but we took her to her first show and she has been winning ever since. She is a clear round machine and we call her our little rocket. She just wants to go in the ring and win.”

On his plan for Sunday’s competition:
“We were quite good the first two days and we had some cushion because we had already placed second and first. I knew that if I made it to the jump off that I would be pretty safe. Because of that, we were fourth in this class, but I am excited to still be able to be champion.”

On the incentives for U.S. breeders:
“Most of my horses are bred in the United States so I think it is very important to use this platform to produce good horses and perform well for the owners. Having a nationwide championship is a great concept and I hope that it continues to take off and grow. I hope that show management will give us a chance to continue to show young horses in a more affordable way so that the breeders and owners are encouraged to have them perform.”

On the USHJA YCJ program:
“I think without those horses we can’t do the sport, especially in the states. I think in Europe, the breeding is big there, but based on my experience I know a lot of breeders are retired or stopped breeding. So I think we have to start thinking about producing here in the United States. Especially for someone like me that comes to the show and carries their own horses, and also for the customer it’s very expensive to produce young horses.

On Traverse City Horse Shows:
“It’s fantastic. The footing is great, and I hope next year we get to jump the five year olds in the big ring. I think it’s a great atmosphere, a great horse show. It’s my first time in Traverse City and I really like it, great course designers, good management, very accommodating, we like to be here and it’s been great.”


About Henrietta's sire, Contefino

Contefino, sire of 6-year-old champion Henrietta, has an impressive number of successful offspring, including eight approved stallions as well as competition horses Contefina LVF (now winning at Grand Prix), Cadillac (ridden by Ben Ebeling), Contefino 6, Greta Garbo (multiple wins), Carlos Z, and more youngsters coming up.

Interested in breeding your mare to Contefino in 2020? Learn more on


Monday, September 13, 2021

USSHBA To Award Educational Grant for US Breeders

Release from USSHBA:

In alignment with our core objectives, and inspired by the passion and enthusiasm from our US sport horse breeders, the United States Sport Horse Breeders Association is proud to offer a new educational grant. With available funding up to $500, this Breeders Grant will be awarded to either one or two people, depending on the applications received and the requested funds allocated to the selected applications.  

The educational event(s) that the breeder is planning to attend must be based in the United States and costs accepted may include travel,  hotel, or registration fees. This grant will be awarded for the advancement of education related to your breeding business. Applications open immediately and will be accepted through November 1, 2021 with  the recipient(s) being named by December 1, 2021. This grant will pertain to 2022, and examples of educational events include:

  • Breeding Classes (e.g. embryo transfer, etc)
  • Sport Horse Cruise 
  • Handling Clinic 
  • USSHBA In-Person Educational Event 
  • Stallion Collection Education 
  • Registry Breeders Tour (must be held in North America) 

Applications can be found online at

Friday, September 10, 2021

Calypso II for Foundation Friday

  Enjoy one of Warmblood Stallions of North America’s more popular Foundation Friday posts!  Every other Friday we will be featuring a foundation sire - one who has been influential in the development of warmblood breeds. We pull from the incredible archive of The Horse Magazinepublished by Chris Hector of Australia. Thank you, Chris, for permission to draw on your expertise!

171 cm
Breeder: Otto Ernst Lill

Calypso II has been one of the most important sires in both Holstein and Hannover, where he bred international competitors and influential breeding stallions. It was Calypso II who introduced the Cor de la Bryère blood to Hanover, ushering in a new era of Hanoverian jumping breeding.

Calypso II progeny tend to show not only great jumping form, but also a wonderful rideability. 

His last appearance in the Hanoverian stallion book, was in 2006, where he is credited with 891 competition horses with winnings of €1,606,332 comprising 185 dressage horses, 20 at S level, and 620 jumpers with 135 competing at S level. 

Calypso II’s great gift to the breeding world was the stallion, Contender.

To read the full article as it was published on The Horse Magazine website - along with full pedigree of Calypso II, click here. The publisher and creator of this incredible resource, Christopher Hector, is the author of The Making of the Warmblood Horse.

Looking for the exciting bloodlines of Calypso II? There are several stallion descendants of Calypso II in North America. Click on the following links to read about each of the ones on

Clintord I
Contiano BF
Leapfrog WT

Monday, August 30, 2021

USEF: Impressive Achievements Conclude 2021 U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions

by Kathleen Landwehr, US Equestrian Communications Department | Aug 29, 2021, 7:31 PM EST

Wayne, Ill. – The U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions came to a close on Sunday with the final national championship titles of the weekend. Five divisions performed their respective tests in hopes of taking home top honors. It was an exciting day of competition to conclude a week full of talented athletes and horses from across the country.   


USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Championship


Alice Tarjan and Candescent (

Twelve combinations rode the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle to determine the winners of the USEF Grand Prix Dressage National Championship. Alice Tarjan stamped her place atop the overall leaderboard, claiming the top two spots with Candescent and Donatella M. Tarjan (Oldwick. N.J.) and Candescent, her 2010 Hanoverian mare, won the class with a score of 77.165% and finished with an overall score of 73.434%. Tarjan and Donatella M, her 2011 Oldenburg mare, earned reserve-champion honors with an overall score of 71.975%. Tarjan is a member of the Kundrun USEF Dressage Development Program with both horses.


“I was really pleased. I thought it was clean and that I stayed with the music, so that was a good thing,” Tarjan said of her freestyle with Candescent. “I lost a lot of the self-carriage I think. It’s hard; you prep these horses for so many tests, and they’re all different lines. And I guess in a perfect world, the horse follows your aids and doesn’t matter what line you ride it on, and maybe it messes me up mentally, and I don’t know if it messes her up, but to try to keep the self-carriage through the whole test with different lines is still a challenge.”


Katie Johnson (Greenwood Village, Colo.) and Quartett, Kylee Lourie’s 2008 Brandenburg gelding, were third overall with a score of 68.620%. Johnson received the Patsy Albers Award, which is presented to the highest-placing rider in the Grand Prix division who represented the U.S. at the FEI North American Youth Championships. The award provides financial support for continuing education and training of its recipient.


Overall Results

From the Mixed Zone:


Tell us about your freestyle:


Johnson: “I was really, really happy with it. It’s the last day of a really long, hot weekend, and he tried so hard and put his best foot forward. It’s a brand-new freestyle for us made by Terry Gallo. It rides so wonderfully and really showcases his good things. I was really happy with it. We made some mistakes, but there are still things to work on for the future.”


What is your horse’s background?


Johnson: “We bought him almost two years ago. He actually is the amateur horse for the owner of the farm. She graciously told me if we could finish him to Grand Prix in November that I could show him. His first and my first official Grand Prix were in December, then our first official CDIs were in January. He just keeps trying and trying, and he has a heart that is so big. We went to France for the Compiègne Nations Cup team. Unfortunately, we couldn’t compete there because of EHV stuff, but we still got to compete at Achleiten in Austria, which was a wonderful show and a really good first experience. This is the end to a very, very unplanned and very exciting year.”


What’s next with your horse?


Tarjan (on Candescent): “We’ve done two CDIs, and now we’re going to Aachen.”


Johnson: “We are going home and going to give him a good break. He deserves a nice, easy month, and I think his owner is going to ride him some and enjoy him. Then, we will just kind of play next season by ear.”


Markel/USEF Young Horse Six-Year-Old Dressage National Championship


Madeleine Bendfeldt and Sonata MF (

Fourteen combinations competed in the FEI Six-Year-Old Final Test of the Markel/USEF Young Horse Six-Year-Old Dressage National Championship. Madeleine Bendfeldt of Germany (Davie, Fla.) and Sonata MF had a solid test to take home the national title. Bendfeldt (Davie, Fla.) and Pegasus Equestrian Davies, Inc.’s Hanoverian mare (Sir Donnerhall I x Em Duet MF, Don Principe) earned an overall score of 8.148 as well as the Highest U.S. Bred Award.


“It feels amazing and unexpected,” said Bendfeldt of the win. “I am super satisfied with the test. It was fine. Of course you always have something that you’d like to do better, but the mare was really good and I had a nice feeling, so I am super happy.”


David Blake (Cardiff by the Sea, Calif.) and Delilah, Leslie Allbright’s Hanoverian mare (Dr Watson x Warina, Wolkenstein II), won the class with a score of 8.120 and earned reserve champion honors with an overall score of 8.024. Alice Tarjan and Summersby II, her Oldenburg mare (Sezuan x Summer Night, Sandro Hit) were third with an overall score of 7.912.


Overall Results

From the Mixed Zone:


Talk about your horse.


Bendfeldt: “Sonata is quite uncomplicated. I think that her favorite thing to do is eating, that is more important than anything else. You know when she is comfortable because she will stretch before you put the saddle on. She is a funny personality. Here she felt nice and comfortable, and the week was fine!


“She is pretty even all of the time. There are not really ups and downs with her. It’s the same without being boring.”


Blake: “I found her in Germany when she was two-and-a-half and just broke, and I sat on her for a second and she trotted and so I said, ‘If she canters, I’ll take her!’ The seller said ‘No, she hasn’t cantered yet,’ but I cantered her a couple of strides and I decided I would take her.


“The horse peaked this weekend. She’s been slow to develop, a little immature, and now, all of a sudden, she got here and said, ‘Alright, I’ll take care of the rest.’ She’s a great horse with a lot of feeling, and very fun.” 


Tarjan: “I bought Summersby as a foal, and she competed here as a four- and five-year-old, and to have her finish third today is awesome. She’ll probably stay home next year and prepare for the Developing Horse Grand Prix.” 


What do you like about working with young horses?


Bendfeldt: “I like working with the young horses more than the older horses. It’s more exciting for me. You have something new—a new way to train, a new discovery about the horse, everyday it’s exciting. It’s exciting to train young horses and educate them yourself.”   


USEF Children Dressage National Championship


Tessa Geven and Sir Frederico (

Twelve combinations closed out the USEF Children Dressage National Championship by riding the FEI Children Individual Test. After winning the USEF Pony Rider Dressage National Championship earlier in the week, Tessa Geven claimed another national champion title. Geven (Cataula, Ga.) piloted Sir Frederico, Carden Burdette’s 2007 Hanoverian gelding, to her second major win of the week, finishing with an overall score of 74.787%.


“It’s, again, exciting,” said of her second title. “It’s been very, very busy this whole week because we have been taking care of them all.”


Sienna Rowe (Urbanna, Va.) and D’Agostino, Christian Garweg’s 2013 Hanoverian gelding, collected reserve-champion honors with an overall score of 74.309%. Maren Elise Fouché-Hanson (Colbert, Ga.) and Estremadura MVH, her 2009 KWPN mare, were third with a score of 73.531%.


Overall Results

From the Mixed Zone:  


Talk about your horse.


Geven: “Frederico is owned by Carden Burdette. I would like to thank her for letting me ride her horse. He is very good. He can get sometimes a little lazy in the ring, especially without a whip, but he can also get too hot. He is very sweet. He likes to get a fancy sometimes. He gets very fancy up front and not as nice in the hind, so it is not necessarily correct.


“He loves food. He is super gentle. I don’t spend as much time with him since he is not mine. But I wish I could spend more time with him. He’s super sweet.


Rowe: “He is part blind, so he has had that for about two years now. He’s eight, and he is definitely a character. He is super sweet and he loves food. He would do anything for it. He loves to be pet for anything.


Fouché-Hanson: “She is such a sweet mare. She does actually not act mareish at all. Her favorite thing is actually neck scratches. That’s her favorite thing in the world, but she is the sweetest mare ever. Once you earn her trust, she will do anything for you.”


Talk about your test.


Rowe: “It was pretty good. It was way calmer than yesterday. He wasn’t as pull-y as yesterday, so that was really good.”


Fouché-Hanson: “The test today was amazing. I am so proud of ‘Z’. This is her third show ever in her life. I got her from Dressage 4 Kids. She was with the Steiners when we got her. Her owner was Jeannie Marin, and she decided to donate her to Dressage 4 Kids because she was going back to vet school. I’m so proud of [Z]. She has so much impressed me. It was just a wonderful day.”


What are your plans for the future?


Geven: “Maybe do Juniors and Young Riders on Frederico. That is the only thing we have in mind right now.”


Rowe: “I would like to try the Children division again. Hopefully do somewhat decent at that. And not as strong, keep some control, but it was pretty good.”


Fouché-Hanson: “We are hoping to do Juniors since I am aging out of Children’s sadly this year. Our goals are to do Juniors and hopefully bring her up the levels soon after that. If we weren’t to do Juniors, maybe we would move up the levels. But I’m hoping for Juniors next year if we do qualify.”


Markel/USEF Developing Horse Grand Prix Dressage National Championship


Alice Tarjan and Serenade MF (

Twelve combinations competed in the USEF Developing Horse Grand Prix Test to determine the Markel/USEF Developing Horse Grand Prix Dressage National Championship title winner. For the second time on Sunday, Alice Tarjan claimed the top two spots in a national championship. Tarjan and Serenade MF, her 2013 Hanoverian mare (Sir Donnerhall x Duet MF, Don Principe), won the class with a score of 75.833%, took the national champion title with an overall score of 75.519%, and the won Highest U.S. Bred Horse Award. Tarjan and Harvest, her 2012 KWPN stallion (Connaisseur x Naomi, Ulft), were the reserve champions with an overall score of 71.689% Tarjan is a member of the Kundrun USEF Dressage Development Program with both horses.


“I am pretty happy,” Tarjan said of her test with Serenade MF. “There are a lot of things that we could improve upon, but that horse just goes out every time and does the job, and I don’t know what more you could ask for.”


Emily Miles (Paola, Kan.) and Java Dulce, Leslie Waterman’s 2011 Danish Warmblood gelding (Jazz x JJ Dolche Gabbana, Deemster), were third with a score of 71.241%.


Endel Ots (Wellington, Fla.) and RS Damon, Jessica Friedrich’s Wurttemberger gelding (Don Diamond I x Marzurka H, HPM Meeteur), won the Best Presented Horse at the Horse Inspection presented by Grayson-Jockey Research Club Foundation. It is awarded to the best presented horse at the horse inspection. The ground jury considers condition, grooming, and interaction with the judges.


Overall Results

From the Mixed Zone:


Alice, what are your thoughts on such a successful weekend?


Tarjan: “The whole thing has been so surreal. I’ve been busy all week just riding, so I haven’t had time to process anything yet. It’s just been jumping from horse to horse, making sure I remember the test, and know how to ride each horse for each test. Riding the young horses is a little different, I don’t bother to visualize a test, and maybe that’s a mistake, but I just get on and take them around. It’s been different having a bunch of young horses.” 


Talk about your horses.


Tarjan: “‘Shrimp’ just goes in and does her job. Harvest is a little more sensitive, and a little greener in the movements. He had several mistakes today. I think the quality is good, but it’s very much developing still.”


Miles: “I was so proud of Java. He came in ranked 15th, so we weren’t even sure if we were going to make it for a while, and I was joking that it would be a fun class to watch, but I had no expectations. I knew that he was getting better consistently throughout the season, and he had that last year off. He’s gotten more solid. I’m super proud of him. I hope he keeps getting better and going on.” 


USEF Dressage Seat Medal Finals – 14-18


Kasey Denny and Hemingway KW (

Ten youth athletes showed off their equitation in 14-18 division of the USEF Dressage Seat Medal Finals. The final began with group rail work followed by individually performed patterns. Kasey Denny (Williston, Fla.) claimed top honors in her fifth appearance aboard Hemingway KW, Amy Denny’s 2012 Dutch Warmblood gelding, with a score of 87.000%. She trains with Amy Denny.


“We just moved in March, so we had a really hectic summer. I came up here more nervous than usual, so this was a surprise,” Denny said of her win. “I’m very pleased and happy. I have placed in the top two each time I’ve competed here, so it’s been a good time coming here each year.” 


Trinity Schatzel (Eagle, Idaho) earned reserve-champion honors with Spörky De Luxe, her 2013 Hanoverian gelding, scoring 86.000%. She trains with Sarah Filiger. Marin Roth (Bloomington, Ill.) placed third with Erin Meadows Jägermeister, her 2014 Zweibrucker gelding, with a score of 84.00%. She trains with Lorna Donahue and Maureen White.


From the Mixed Zone:


How did you prepare for the final?


Denny: “I do a ton of no stirrup work before I come here.


“It was a struggle moving up [to a horse], my pony did so much for me. He was a great equitation horse, that was his thing, and Ollie is still getting used to it. He is only nine, so he is still a baby with some things, but he’s awesome. 


“I just tried to keep him as relaxed as possible today. I know that when he is by himself in the grand prix ring he gets uptight, so we just went and did the best we could.”


Schatzel: “A lot of relaxation and getting my horse as supple as possible because he gets distracted a lot, so there was a lot of staying with me and staying on my aids.” 


Roth: “Pretty much we’ve just been making him look the best he can, and making sure my equitation stayed in a good place, because usually if he does well I am all over the place, and vice versa. So we just focused on putting it all together.”


Watch the on-demand footage from the U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions on USEF Network.




Keep up with the 2021 U.S. Dressage Festival of Champions on USA Dressage Facebook and Instagram where you can find winning rides and daily photo galleries, USEF Network Twitter, and USA Dressage Instagram featuring Instagram Stories. Use #USADressage and #FestivalofChampions.