It seemed almost too good to be true – 75 degrees and not raining? Not your typical Morven Park International Fall CIC3* cross-country day. Heading into the first phase of the competition in Leesburg, Va. there were 15 pairs entered in the CIC3*, 13 in the Advanced, and five in the Advanced Area II Championships. However with many horses having run last two weeks ago at Plantation Field CIC3* and many aiming for the Fair Hill International CCI3* in two weeks – withdrawals were the name of the final day.
Caroline Martin rode Sherrie Martin’s 14-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding, The Apprentice, to the win in the CIC3*. They scored a 30.7 in the dressage for fourth place and moved up to third after a double clear show jumping round. Both first and second places withdrew, so Martin went into cross-country as the leader. She added 15.2 time penalties, but had enough in hand to keep her lead.
Martin showed her consistency by adding exactly 15.2 time penalties to her second ride, Danger Mouse’s score as well. She finished in third place with the 10-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding.
Colleen Rutledge and Confidence Game had the fastest round of all three divisions by a mile and moved up from 11th to take second. This was only the 8-year-old Thoroughbred stallion’s (Morluc x Pam's Ruckus) second attempt at the level.
It was a wire-to-wire win for Lynn Symansky and the Donner Syndicate’s RF Cool Play, a 10-year-old German Sport Horse gelding (Condors Champion x Roxana) in the Area II Advanced Championships. They finished 37.2 points ahead of second place, Ema Klugman and Jeni Klugman’s 18-year-old Thoroughbred gelding, Bendigo.
Kim Severson and the Cross Syndicate’s Cooley Cross Border had a great run across the country to hold on to their overnight lead in the Advanced division. Not only did the 11-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding (Diamond Roller x Whos Diaz) win, they were also the only pair to complete all three phases in the class.
"No matter how old you are, be open to all disciplines, learn how to ride a dressage horse, a gaited horse, a show jumper. Go fox hunting and point-to-pointing and horse showing. You’ll learn from all of them and when you do decide which discipline you want to do, you’ll be better at it anyway.”
The University of Findlay’s Three-Day Eventing Team was established in 2013, the same year USEA voted and approved the USEA intercollegiate program. The UF team has over 30 members encompassing a variety of majors at the university. The team has access to two indoor arenas, a large outdoor arena, and 70 acres of on-site cross-country fences.
Bellamy, an Oldenburg/Thoroughbred gelding of unknown breeding, came to Tamra Smith’s farm in Southern California with his mane half-way down his neck and filled with burrs. Bellamy had been sitting in a field for a little over a year after unseating several riders in a row and Smith, known for being good with tricky horses, agreed to take him on.