The Dutta Corp/USEF CCI 4*-L Eventing National Championship kicked off at Tryon International Equestrian Center & Resort (TIEC) with two days of Dressage competition as part of The Dutta Corp Tryon International Three-Day Event. The week features CCI 1*-4*-L competition alongside CCI 4*-S competition and the Adequan®/USEF Eventing Youth Team Challenge East Coast Finals.
Lynn Symansky (USA) and RF Cool Play are the duo to beat after Dressage concluded for CCI 4*-S competitors at Tryon, scoring a 28.2 with the 2008 German Warmblood gelding (Condors Champion x Radscha) owned by the Donner Syndicate, LLC. Phillip Dutton (USA) and Z, the 2008 Zangersheide gelding (Asca x Babouche VH Gehucht Z) owned by Evie Dutton, Ann Jones, Suzanne Lacy, Caroline Morgan, Simon Roosevelt, and Thomas Tierney, received a score of 29.2 for second place so far, while Jessica Phoenix (CAN) and Humble GS, the 2006 Trakehner/Canadian Sport Horse stallion (Ferrari GS x Amiego GS) owned by Charlotte Schickedanz, currently sit just behind with a score of 29.7 for third.
In the chase for the national title, Will Coleman (USA) and Chin Tonic HS hold the lead going into Cross-Country, dancing to a score of 26.0. The remainder of the podium is also all-American at the moment: Woods Baughman (USA) and C’est La Vie, the 2008 Hanoverian gelding (Contendro I x Aarking xx) owned in partnership with James Baughman Jr. and Kim Baughman, scored a 29.4 in the sandbox for second, and Sharon White (USA) sits in third with Claus 63, her own 2012 Holsteiner gelding (Catoo x Levisto), after their 29.9-point performance in Dressage.
Coleman and the 2012 Holsteiner gelding (Chin Champ x Wildera) owned by Hyperion Stud LLC are contesting their third-ever Advanced competition, so he’s aiming for an educational yet competitive experience. “He’s a very talented young horse,” Coleman detailed. “He’s very green for this kind of competition, but we feel that he’s ready. He showed some of his greenness in his test, but he has so much quality that he can get away with it. I feel fortunate to be where we are and recognize I’m riding a really good horse in that phase.”
Since it’s Chin Tonic’s third run at the Advanced level, Coleman is proceeding with caution but is excited to contest the Captain Mark Phillips (GBR) course design on the White Oak Cross-Country Course Saturday. “The main thing we want to think about is just giving him a good run for his future and development, but we’re here to be competitive as well,” Coleman shared. “We’re formulating a good plan for him, and then we’ll go out there [Saturday] and try our best to execute it.
“It’s been great here as always,” Coleman commented on the venue. “Tryon is first-class. The horses get a sense of the atmosphere that you might encounter at big-time events around the world. I think it’s wonderful that we’re able to compete here.” he concluded, “Fingers crossed for [Saturday]. I hope everyone has great runs and that we have a great day of sport!”
Bruce “Buck” Davidson, Jr. (USA) and DHI Showman put on a show in the sandbox, scoring a 26.1 to sit atop the CCI 3*-L division heading into Cross-Country competition. Dan Kreitl (USA) and Carmango, the 2013 Westphalian gelding (Chirivell x Templer GL XX) owned by Kay Dixon, earned a 27.5 from the judges to hold second place. Ariel Grald (USA) has a hold on the third-place slot with Forrest Gump 124, the 2011 Hanoverian gelding (Fuerst Nymphenburg x Amerigo Vespucci XX) owned by Anne Eldridge, after scoring a 27.7.
Davidson complimented the 2014 Selle Francais gelding (Elvis Ter Putte x Vigo D’Arsouilles) owned by Sami Crandell for his consistency despite his young age, and noted that Dressage comes easily to him so far. “He’s very consistent. He’s very pretty, really quiet, and a good mover. He just really has a presence about him. He’s very reliable in the Dressage.”
While Showman has never contested a Cross-Country course this long before, Davidson acknowledged, he is excited to show off his mount’s bravery and honesty on the White Oak Cross-Country Course Saturday. “He’s a fantastic jumper. He’s very brave and honest. He’s never gone this far before, so he can be a little green in the sense that he’s just a baby. I think going past all of these fences that we have to go past earlier in the course is going to be a little bit trickier for him,” he analyzed.
“He’s a super nice horse, and certainly not a finished product yet, but he’s a nice canvas to start with. [Dressage] was a good start, and hopefully we can just keep getting better through the weekend!”
When not competing in the irons, Davidson joined Will Coleman for a little competition on the golf course, he revealed, making use of Tryon Resort’s Cleghorn Golf & Sports Club. “Also, my cousin from the Charlotte area, who I don’t get to see often, is coming to the Cleghorn Gun Club today, so I’m going to say hi to them.” Davidson is enjoying all of Tryon Resort’s amenities, getting the full Tryon Resort experience “down to the tee-shirt and everything,” he joked. "I’m staying in one of the cabins on-site, too. There’s lots to do here, that’s for sure!”
If all divisions were combined at the Dutta Corp Tryon International Three-Day Event, Tik Maynard (CAN) and Galileo, the 2011 Dutch Warmblood gelding (San Remo x Rousseau) owned by Richard Maynard, would be leading all 180 entries after Dressage. The pair earned a 21.4 in the sandbox, with Elisabeth Halliday-Sharp (USA) coming closest on a score of 24.7 with Quite Nice 11, the 2011 Holsteiner gelding (Quadros 3 x Caretino 2) owned by Emilie Mudd. Ayden Schain (USA) rode Fernhill Hole Shot, the 2013 Zangersheide gelding (Entertainer x Coriall Z) owned by Dawn Barclay, to a 26.3, which puts them in third place at the moment. The CCI 2*-L division is the largest, with 78 pairs completing the Dressage phase.
How to Watch
Tune in to the live stream from The Dutta Corp Tryon International Three-Day Event on USEF Network now through Sunday, Nov. 14.
The USEA is heartbroken to hear about the loss of James “Jimmy” C. Wofford. A lifelong lover and supporter of the sport, Wofford has had an astounding influence on where eventing is today and has tirelessly supported the goals of the United States Eventing Association. He served as president of the American Horse Show Association (now U.S. Equestrian (USEF)), was the first vice-president of the U.S. Equestrian Team (USET), and served as secretary of the USCTA (now USEA). He served two terms as a member of the FEI Eventing Committee, including two years as vice chairman. In addition, he has served on numerous committees during his career.
Experience the thrill of traditional long format three-day eventing by competing in a USEA Classic Series event in 2023! The United States Eventing Association (USEA) is pleased to announce that the 2023 Classic Series calendar is now available.
Amanda Walker wasn’t sure what she’d gotten herself into when she went to try Runaway Romeo as a potential sales project in 2018. The gelding was a bit bigger than Walker was looking for and was quite pushy coming out of the stall. When she got on, it didn’t get much better.
For seasoned and novice riders alike, it is always good to revisit the basics. Serving as the foundation for any eventer, the positions used on the cross-country course differ from those in the dressage or show jumping ring. The USEA tuned into five-time Olympian, three-time World Equestrian Games rider, two Pan-American Games rider, and USEA ECP certified coach Karen O'Connor as she walked coaches and students at the USEA ECP Symposium through the basic positions for effective cross-country riding.