Sep 03, 2022

#AEC2022 Novice Leaders White-Knuckle Overnight Standings After Tackling Cross-Country

Jennifer Williams Southworth and Special Agent. USEA/Hope Carlin Photo

For Immediate Release: Novice competitors left it all out on the field today as they conquered a challenging but fair championship cross-country course. The Ian Stark-designed course offered interesting questions for novice riders who may or may not have found them familiar but these leaders tackled each obstacle with the right answers to cohesively maintain their overnight lead.

USEA Novice Amateur Championship

Jennifer Williams Southworth was able to maintain her dressage score through cross-country today while piloting the 13-year-old Thoroughbred named Special Agent (Dance with Ravens x Butterwood).

"It is pretty unbelievable to still be in the lead. It was a great cross-country ride; I was looking forward to it. We needed to slow up in the second half because we were going to be way too fast. He was just perfect,” said Southworth. “Tomorrow will be our weak point because he is so strong on cross-country and so bold that rails are pretty casual. I am feeling the pressure going into tomorrow. I’d rather be second than first! I just bought him in March and he’s been an easy horse to get with. He was going prelim when I bought him and that was the plan. I bought him with the hope was that he would move me up to prelim for one last time before I am too long old to get back on a horse."

USEA Novice Horse Championship

Tommy Greengard and Cappachina. USEA/Hope Carlin Photo
Tommy Greengard and Cappachina. USEA/Hope Carlin Photo

Tommy Greengard took the lead in today’s cross-country round while riding the 7-year-old Oldenburg named Cappachina (Coeur d’Amour x Rhythm-n-Blues), giving them a great advantage for coming into the final phase.

"She was such a good girl. She galloped around really well in nice shape and really was so relaxed which is a great feeling,” said Greengard. “She was so confident and relaxed which is really nice for a young horse. The course rode really really well—I actually missed a fence on my festival horse so I was a little nervous but she was phenomenal. We were thrilled with her. She’s a younger, greener horse of ours and we just adore her. We are hopeful tomorrow will go well—my other horse just won the intermediate so we are hoping we take some of that good luck into tomorrow for the novice."

USEA Novice Junior Championship

Olivia Keye and Oso Mighty. USEA/Hope Carlin Photo
Olivia Keye and Oso Mighty. USEA/Hope Carlin Photo

Olivia Keye riding the 20-year-old Oldenburg named Oso Mighty (by Indocus) secured a leadership position in today’s cross-country course while maintaining their dressage score, setting them up for a favorable position going into the show jumping round tomorrow.

"Cross country was awesome! My horse was awesome. He really just rocked around—he was pretty amazing. I am super excited for tomorrow,” said Keye. “Show jumping is one of his best phases so I’m feeling pretty good all around. He is amazing for being 20 years old. We’ve been together for three years and he has brought me up from Intro to Novice so we have a great partnership.”

USEA Novice Rider Championship

Alyssa Cairo and Paddington. USEA/Hope Carlin Photo
Alyssa Cairo and Paddington. USEA/Hope Carlin Photo

Alyssa Cairo piloting the 17-year-old Connemara named Paddington (by Yavari) was able to keep her two-point lead after finishing her cross-country run today, securing a leader position heading into show jumping.

“It’s amazing, I’m so happy. He’s a very confident jumper and he just took on that course with more confidence than what I had,” said Cairo. “There were a few jumps on there that certainly got my attention and he handled everything beautifully so I was quite pleased and thrilled at the end. He was very fit and I make sure we take very good care of him. I’m always worried but it’s a good phase for him. A rail can make it or break it for everybody.”

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About the USEA American Eventing Championships

The USEA American Eventing Championships (AEC) presented by Nutrena Feeds is the pinnacle of the sport at the national levels. Held annually, the best junior, adult amateur, and professional competitors gather to vie for national championship titles at every level from Beginner Novice to Advanced. This ultimate test of horse and rider draws hundreds of horses and riders from around the country to compete for fabulous prizes, a piece of the substantial prize money, and the chance to be named the National Champion at their respective levels. In fact, the 2021 AEC garnered over 1,000 entries and now stands as the largest eventing competition in North American history. The 2022 USEA American Eventing Championships presented by Nutrena Feeds will be held August 31 – September 4 at the beautiful Rebecca Farm in Kalispell, Montana. Click here to learn more about the USEA American Eventing Championships.

The USEA would like to thank Presenting Sponsor: Nutrena Feeds; Advanced Final Title Sponsor: Adequan; Platinum Level Sponsor: Bates Saddles Gold Level Sponsors: Parker Equine Insurance, Smartpak, Capital Square, Standlee; Silver Level Sponsors: Auburn Labs, Mountain Horse, The Jockey Club, Kerrits; Bronze Level Sponsors: Athletux, The Chronicle of the Horse, Dubarry of Ireland, FITS Riding, Equilume, Devoucoux, Fifth Third Bank, Gallops Saddlery, D.G. Stackhouse & Ellis, Clark Nissan; Contributing Level Sponsors: CrossCountry App, WeRideTogether, Haygain, First Interstate Bank, Schellinger Construction, Glacier Bank, Animal Health Solutions Inc., Discover Kalispell; Prize Level Sponsors: Vet Blue, Practical Horseman, Hound & Hare, Strides of Equality Equestrians, Horse & Country TV, Bemer Independent Distributors, Freelance Design, Achieve Equine/FLAIR, Flexible Fit Equestrian USA, and more! ATC Sponsors: The Chronicle of the Horse, FITS Riding, Nutrena Feeds, SmartPak, Achieve Equine/FLAIR, Kerrits, and Horse & Country TV

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The USEA is incredibly proud to allow the thrill of the 'chase to live on for those who want to experience the unforgettable rush of the classic long format three-day event through our USEA Classic Series events. Long-format events from the Beginner Novice to Preliminary levels are still a reality with the USEA Classic Series and include roads and tracks, steeplechase, and cross-country on "endurance day," as well as horse inspections. In addition, educational activities are offered at the USEA Classic Series Events to help prepare competitors, especially those who are contesting their first-ever long format event.

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