Six riders from the Pacific Northwest and Canada completed dressage under blue skies in the Adequan Gold Cup Advanced class at Aspen Farms Horse Trials in Yelm, Wash.
Scores at the top of the leaderboard are tightly packed, with Jordan Lindstedt and Revitavet Capato and Mary Burke and Prince William tied for first on 30.4. Less than a point behind the leaders, Sara Sellmer and TF Kreisler and Emily Pestl-Dimmitt and Airlington are tied for third on 30.7.
Mary Burke is looking to defend her first place finish last year in the Adequan Gold Cup division at Aspen Farms with her off-the-track-Thoroughbred, Prince William. “I thought our test went well,” she says. “For a Thoroughbred that’s super fit, it’s hard to put in a relaxed dressage test. We’re trying some new things with him, and he was a little more relaxed. I was pleased, and I couldn’t do it without my clients and their support—it’s a team effort to get this horse to deliver like he did today.”
Mary Burke and Prince William. Photo by Lively Manor Photography.
Looking ahead to the next phase, Mary shares “This horse is incredibly consistent on cross-country. My strategy will be the same as it always is: hold my line and try to give him the best ride I can. I look forward to tomorrow. It’s always a great track here at Aspen Farms.”
Jordan Linstedt, tied for first, reports that Revitavet Capato offered “some of the best movement we’ve had since Rolex this past spring. He’s had an inconsistent summer and had to recover from a virus. Normally his trot work is a little harder and the canter work is better; today I felt it was the opposite. He was showing off in the trot!”
Jordan and Capato are no strangers to the Advanced cross-country track at Aspen Farms. This year, she says “I’m not really looking to go for time; I’m looking to product a really smooth, nice run, and hopefully therefore as a result we will make the time.”
Sara Sellmer, tied for third, is within reach of the top spot heading into cross-country. After walking the course with her coach Nick Holmes-Smith this afternoon, Sara reports “I think it’s big and bold; a little less technical than some years. I think it’s definitely a course for my horse—he’s very Irish and very forward. I’m definitely going to go for time; we’ve been working on fitness and I think he’s fit enough.”
Emily Pestl-Dimmitt is tied with Sara and also confident after her ride today. “I felt like it was the best Advanced dressage test for us to date,” says Emily. “He was extremely obedient. He was a little ‘up’ around the outside of the arena, but he was submissive and obedient once he was in there. Overall I’m happy with the result, and I’m extremely excited for the rest of the weekend!”
The Advanced competitors will take on Tremaine Cooper’s 3,720 meter cross-country course tomorrow at 1:15 p.m. Pacific. You can see a full preview of the course, here: http://aspenfarmseventing.com/adequan-gold-cup-advanced-cross-country-course-preview/
In addition to the Gold Cup and Open divisions, Aspen Farms Horse Trials is hosting the USEA Area VII Championships, featuring 10 Championship classes from Beginner Novice to Intermediate. Championship classes are limited to riders who placed first through fifth in their level at a qualifying Area VII competition.