Buck Davidson and Cooley Candyman were the first pair to canter through the fog and down centerline in the inaugural Morven Park International CCI4*-L. They scored a 29.6 to take the lead which they wouldn’t relinquish throughout the entire division. Rolo 7 LLC’s Irish Sport Horse gelding (Sligo Candy Boy x Dashing Hill) is just 8 years old and attempting his first CCI4*-L, but he bested the field of 24 horses.
“He’s a super, super cool horse. He is only 8, but he missed last Fall and I brought him back this Spring and did a Training test in March and the judge said ‘I am sorry I think that is the worst score I have ever given,’” laughed Davidson. “When he’s a monkey, he’s a monkey.”
With that Training score behind him, ‘Rolo’ made his Advanced debut this summer at the Horse Park of New Jersey with a second place and competed in the CCI4*-S at Great Meadow and Plantation.
“He is still green and he has so much ability it is unbelievable,” said Davidson. “He really tried today. He’s not all the way there yet, but I definitely think he is the best horse I have ever had.”
Only two other horses broke in the 20s who are tied for second on 29.8. Caroline Moran’s Quasi Cool, a 10-year-old Holsteiner gelding (Quo Vados I x B-Estelle) who is contesting his first CCI4*-L with Phillip Dutton in the tack and Colleen Loach and her Pan American Games’ horse FE Golden Eye, a 9-year-old Hanoverian gelding (Goldfever 3 x Cascade) owned by Peter Barry, Amanda Bernhard, and the rider.
The CCI4*-L division will be the first on Derek di Grazia’s cross-country tomorrow with the leader heading out of the startbox as the pathfinder at 9:00 a.m.
“I said to Derek [di Grazia], I think it’s as good of course that I've ever walked,” explained Davidson. “It's got a lot of flow, it's got a lot of gallop, it's got big jumps, it's got tricky jumps, but it feels like it's going to be difficult, but very fair. And it's nice to see a course up to height and up to size – it’s proper. This place is an amazing facility and to have a course like this. It is so sad not to have Tremaine [Cooper] here – he obviously had a lot to do with this course and this place – but I think he would be super happy.”
“It feels like there is a lot of terrain and a lot of galloping,” continued Davidson. “It is a big difference from four-star short to this and it should be. If you go around here alright you will have a horse that you can keep going with. I think with too many of the four-stars you can’t say that.”
Twelve of the 21 pairs in the CCI4*-S left all the rails up in the show jumping with just two of those adding time penalties. Will Coleman and Chin Tonic HS, Hyperion Stud’s 9-year-old Holsteiner gelding (Chin Champ x Wildera), maintained the overnight lead in the CCI4*-S with a clear round over the Chris Barnard-designed course. Second-placed Clayton Fredericks also held onto his position with FE Stormtrooper, Kingfisher Park and Diana Crawford’s 12-year-old Hanoverian gelding (Stakkato’s Highlight x Levina) and moved up from fourth to third with FE Ophelia, Kingfisher Park’s 14-year-old Zweibrucker mare (Ocordo x Argentina).
The CCI4*-S cross-country gets underway at 11:24 a.m. tomorrow to finish out their competition.
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After not running in 2020 and 2021, the MARS Bromont CCI Three-Day Event returned to the Bromont Olympic Equestrian Center in Quebec, Canada, in 2022. America's Jennie Saville (née Brannigan) and Twilightslastgleam won the CCI4*-L, as the chestnut Thoroughbred gelding (National Anthem x Royal Child) bred and owned by Nina Gardner moved up from eighth after dressage into the lead after cross-country with the fastest round on wet ground over the tracks designed by Derek di Grazia. Canada's Lindsay Traisnel and Bacyrouge, a bay Selle Français gelding (Mylord Carthago x Lelia) owned by Patricia Pearce, finished second, and they are among four from the top-10 in the CCI4*-L in 2022 that return in 2023.
Hannah Sue Hollberg of Kennett Square, Pennsylvania, was on a winning streak at the Essex Horse Trials on Sunday, claiming victory in both the $10,000 Open Intermediate and Open Preliminary divisions with two horses that are fairly new to her. Some difficulty on cross-country did not stop her mount Hachi from claiming victory in the Open Intermediate with a score of 101.6, while Open Preliminary partner Rockster finished on his dressage score of 27.3.
The great football coach Vince Lombardi said, “We win our games in practice.” With the goal of having the most effective practices possible for horses, their riders, and their coaches, Cathy Wieschhoff explains some signs that can indicate when horse and rider should repeat an exercise, switch it up, or be done with that activity. Wieschhoff brings perspective as a five-star rider that has competed at the Kentucky Three-Day Event and Burghley Horse Trials, a USEF “R” Course Designer for eventing cross-country and show jumping, a former Area VIII chair and member of the USEA Board of Governors, and a Level V USEA ECP Certified Coach based out of Carriage Station Farm in Lexington, Kentucky.
The United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) is pleased to announce the Land Rover U.S. Eventing Team for the FEI Eventing Nations Cup Poland CCIO4*-NC-S at the Strzegom Horse Trials (Poland) from June 21-25, 2023. The team will be under the direction of USEF Eventing Emerging and Development Coach Leslie Law.