Kelli Temple has the ride on two horses in this year’s USEA Young Event Horse (YEH) East Coast Championships, and she rode both of them to the top spot in their respective classes following today’s dressage and conformation.
In the five-year-old class, Temple piloted Kara Angulo and Charlotte Hogg’s Metallica to the lead. The Holsteiner mare is by Cancara and out of a Casall Ask mare and was imported from Germany in the fall of her four-year-old year. Judges Ian Stark and Bea di Grazia awarded Metallica a 29.75 in the dressage (out of 35 points), the highest of the day, and then Cathy Tucker-Slaterbeck gave her a 12.11 for conformation (out of 15 points) to secure the lead on a 41.86.
Normally ridden by co-owner, Angulo, Temple took over the ride on Metallica qualifying her for the Championships as well as riding her at a recent Training-level Event. “She is just a lovely mare,” said Temple. “She has a lovely temperament and Kara has done a great job training her, so all I had to do was sit up there and steer her around. She only wants to do the right thing. I feel very lucky.”
Both Angulo and Temple have brought several horses through the YEH program including Master Frisky – who was sold to Boyd Martin and ridden at the Rolex Kentucky CCI4* this past spring. “We have used [the YEH Championships] as a showcase and to bring young horses along,” explained Angulo. “It is great to introduce them to the atmosphere at such a young age and fun to do such a big event.”
With a 28.91 in dressage and an 11.67 in conformation and type, HC Fabian, a Dutch Warmblood gelding (Cantos x Discara) owned and ridden by Devon Brown finished the day on a 40.58 to sit in second overall.
A mere .10 behind HC Fabian is SpectraVET Cohiba, a Wurttemburg mare (Con Spirito x Lea), who is owned and ridden by Lynn Symansky.
There is only a 10-point spread between the 34 horses in the five-year-old division, so tomorrow’s jumping phase could change the look of the leaderboard a lot.
The scores at the top of the four-year-old class are very tight with the top three all sitting on 39s.
Temple’s second ride, her own and Christine Stiller’s 4-year-old Frame Bye Bye America sits in the lead in his age division on a 39.78 having scored a 28.35 in dressage and an 11.43 in conformation. The Selle Francais gelding (Once Pol x Idoles Des Fans) was bred by fellow YEH competitor, Martin Douzant, in France before he imported him to the U.S.
“I saw [Bye Bye] this summer and fell in love with him right away,” said Temple. “He is like my soul mate. The hardest part of him is sitting his trot – he has an amazing trot, and he is just a showman. He got here and must have thought this is a party all about me. He is a showman and loves to go into the ring and loves cross-country a lot. I am very lucky to have the ride on such two cool horses.”
The Frame prefix stands for France/America (Douzant’s business as he is a Frenchman living in the U.S.) while the rest of his name has to do with saying bye bye to France and hello to the U.S.!
On a 39.69 (28.14/11.55) is Landmark’s Apollo, a Dutch Warmblood bred and owned by Jacqueline Mars. The gelding is out of Sunset Paradise, a mare competed through the Intermediate level by Karen O’Connor and by the great stallion ROC USA.
Third place goes to Ally KGO, a Trakehner mare, owned by the McCue family and ridden by Morgan McCue. Bred by KD Trakehners, Ally KGO is by Hirtentanz *E* and out of Annabel Lee, and scored a 39.48 in today’s competition.
Tomorrow’s jumping portion, which accounts for a large part of the final score, begins with the four-year-old class at 8:00 a.m. and continues with the 5-year-olds from 10:16 a.m. to 3:25 p.m. “They always do a great job and designing the course,” said Temple as she looks ahead to tomorrow. “It is very inviting for the young horses. There obviously are some challenges, which there should be in a championship, but we are looking forward to it as well.”
The USEA would like to thank all of the generous YEH Sponsors, who make the Series and the Championships possible: Fleeceworks, Event Clinics, Standlee Hay, Merck Animal Health, SmartPak, Pyranha Fly and Insect Control, and Professional’s Choice.