Competitors took on Captain Mark Phillips' cross-country at the Nutrena American Eventing Championships presented by VTO Saddlery for the final time at the Texas Rose Horse Park with the competitive Novice and Broadstone Beginner Novice divisions. It will be interesting to see how the standings shake out over the last day of competition starting tomorrow!
Tamra Smith firmly holds her lead in the Novice Horse division with Anita Nardine’s Favian on a score of 21.5. “He was great today. He’s ready to go Training level and that’s what you hope for going into a championship, your horse should be ready for the next level,” Smith explains. She knows that Favian is super rideable and should produce a nice round tomorrow in the show jumping ring.
McKinsey Wickman piloted her own 7-year-old Irish Sport Horse, Dassett Profile to a double clear round to hold the lead in the Junior Novice division. “My ride today was great. After walking the cross-country course again this morning I was a bit nervous about the water and combinations but as soon he left the start box he was so brave and bold. He took me to every fence that I was worried about and made it feel easy,” Wickman explains. Heading into show jumping tomorrow Wickman mentioned that she’ll be mostly focusing on keeping a consistent pace and wishes all of her competitors the best of luck.
Sally Beach and her own 12-year-old Thoroughbred, Hang Time made their way into the lead in the Novice Amateur division after a last minute change to the standings. Beach describes, “He was so good today. I didn’t even look at my watch once and we came in two seconds under the optimum time. It was such a great course and I had so much fun out there today!”
Julie Norman maintained her lead in the Broadstone Beginner Novice Horse division with Stephanie Wyly’s 6-year-old Oldenburg, Tia. Norman said, “I didn’t really know how she would handle the course today since she’s still quite green to Eventing, but she came out of the box ready to go. She was a little spooky in between the jumps, but when it was time to focus on a fence right in front of her she was excellent.”
Bobby Covington took over the lead in the Broadstone Beginner Novice Amateur division with his own 15-year-old Thoroughbred, Halo by producing a double clear cross-country trip. “Halo has a huge stride and he’s really fast so I’m normally not worried about time but since I was in a tie I wanted to make sure to get close to the optimum time. It was also really important for me to make wide turns so I could keep his rhythm to all the fences. Overall, he was perfect!”
Melody Pruitt and her own 8-year-old Thoroughbred, The Flying Ace kept their lead in the Broadstone Beginner Junior Beginner Novice division. “Ace was so confident today. I was worried about the ditch and the second water, but he took me right to those jumps. I’m so proud of him,” Pruitt says. Pruitt specifically plans to set The Flying Ace up for a good ride through the two-stride line in show jumping tomorrow so he doesn’t run out of room with his massive stride and knock a rail.
Miriam Copeland and her own 8-year-old Fresian, D’Stinctive remain in the lead in the Broadstone Junior Beginner Novice 14 and Under division. “Our warm-up started off a bit rocky but as soon as we got out on course we were in a groove.” Copeland competed at the March horse trials at the Texas Rose Horse Park and had a silly run out at the same last fence. Copeland mentions, “I made it very clear to my horse today that we were going over this last jump no matter what!”
Full results from today can be found here. Show jumping kicks off tomorrow at 8:00 AM with the Novice divisions.
About the AEC
The Nutrena USEA American Eventing Championships, Presented by VTO Saddlery is the annual American championship for every level of the Olympic equestrian sport of Eventing, from Beginner Novice to Advanced. This year the AEC is being held from September 24-27 at the Texas Rose Horse Park in Tyler, Texas.
The USEA would like to thank all the generous sponsors of the 2015 AEC including:
Nutrena, VTO Saddlery, Adequan, Merial, Professional’s Choice, Broadstone,Devoucoux, Priefert, Standlee Hay, Charles Owen, Merck Animal Health, Pyranha Fly and Insect Control, Practical Horseman, DG Stackhouse, Animals to Wear, Fleeceworks, The Chronicle of the Horse, FLAIR, SmartPak, CWD, Brody Robertson Show Jumps, Point Two Air Jackets, Equine Art by Julie, Ovation, Eventing Training Online, Auburn Laboratories, Sunsprite Warmbloods, Back on Track, FITS,The Jockey Club, GumBits, NTEA, Schneiders Tack, Greenwood Farm, Pro View Global Digital Surveillance, The Scoring Chix, C4 Belts, Horse Hydrator, Kastel Denmark, SportsBrainUSA, Nature’s Select, EasyCare Inc, Likit, Noble Outfitters and more!