Jun 15, 2024

Aspen Farms Kicks Off with Inaugural CCI4*-S

By Chesna Klimek - Edited Press Release
Karen O'Neal and Clooney 14. Ashley Kemp Photography photos

Yelm, Wash.—June 14—Aspen Farms Horse Trials started with a full day of dressage competition on Friday under fair skies. More than 300 competitors from throughout Area VII and beyond are competing this weekend, and five horse/rider combinations entered Aspen Farms' inaugural CCI4*-S—the first ever offered in the state of Washington.

Karen O'Neal and the 10-year-old Westphalian gelding, Clooney 14, owned by Annika Asling, scored 30.4 to secure the lead in the CCI4*-S overnight. Less than a rail separates the top four competitors in the division.

"We're still a work in progress at this level with the changes and some of the movements,” said O’Neal. “Going from the three-star to the four-star test is a lot harder—more movements. It's getting better. He was a little spooky, but that may have worked to my advantage as it may have given him a little more energy. He was good. I'm proud of him. I feel like I have to get better; but this is our best four-star score so far."

O'Neal is also leading the Training Horse division with MNF North Forks Summit, owned by Angela Wilson, with a dressage score of 26.4.

"He's half Welsh and half warmblood" said O'Neal. "He's half pony, but he's big; 17-hands! He's still green, but he did really well today. I was pleased with the score and happy with his performance overall in the test."

Marc Grandia and Campari FFF, owned by Team Rebecca LLC, are second in the CCI4*-S with 32.9. Sophie Click and Quidproquo are third with 33.9.

"Campari was great," Grandia reflected after his dressage test. "He's such a good horse to get to go down centerline with now because he's done that test over and over again; he's so comfortable with it. The changes are still a problem, but the rest of the work was quite good."

Looking ahead to show jumping tomorrow, Grandia shared, "historically Campari show jumps well, but it's always a new challenge. I'm excited to see what the course is."

Tommy Greengard and That's Me Z.

In the CCI3*-S, Tommy Greengard of California and That's Me Z, a 7-year-old Zangersheide gelding owned by Andrea Pfeiffer, shone bright with a score of 30.0 to claim the overnight lead in a field of 14.

Harper Padgett and Captivate, owned by Leonie Padgett, and Erin Grandia and Hyacinth are tied for second in the CCI3*-S on 31.4.

Chlie Kischuk and Dassett Endeavour.

The overnight leaders in the CCI2*-S are Chloe Kischuk from California and her Irish Sport Horse gelding Dassett Endeavour, whom she has had for less than a year. They scored 23.8.

"This season is my first season at Preliminary level, but he has run a three-long so he has been there, done that, and he's showing me the ropes," shared Kischuk. "This is my third FEI. [Our dressage test] was so lovely; it was so much fun. He really showed up today. The test was smooth."

Considering their prospects over the show jumping course tomorrow, Kischuk shared that, "show jumping is not necessarily our strong suit—cross-country is our favorite. He's so big, sometimes he's a little tricky in the combinations, but he tries so hard. I'm excited for tomorrow."

Amateur rider Asia Vedder and her 14-year-old Holsteiner Gelding, Isi, are close behind Kilchuk in second on 25.7.

"I've taken him Advanced, but he's stepping down—he's not an Advanced horse. His jam is really the two-star or three-star level," shared Vedder after her dressage ride. "I was happy with him today; he's strong in the dressage phase. There were a few spots in the test that I could have prepared him for better. But he had good cadence and good relaxation throughout, and he's staying more in front of the leg. It was a fun ride."

Seven pairs entered the Open Intermediate division. Stephanie Goodman and Drs Resolute, owned by Get Lucky Get Lucky LLC, are leading the way after dressage on 27.8 and have a rail in hand going into show jumping tomorrow. Mickayla Howard and HH Ontario are second on 35.0, and Hailey Blackburn and Baral Villester are tied for third with Ashley Widmer and What Are The Odds on 35.6.

All scores are available online here.

Follow along with more show coverage on Instagram @AspenFarmsHorseTrials.

Or on the Aspen Farms Horse Trials Facebook page.

The competition will begin at 8 a.m. on Saturday, and all are welcome to a reception at 5 p.m. celebrating the inaugural CCI4*-S in the VIP Tent above the FEI show jumping ring.

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Weekend Quick Links: July 13-14

Are you following along with the action from home this weekend? Or maybe you're competing at an event and need information fast. Either way, we’ve got you covered!

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Official Competition & Training Apparel of the USEA

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