Tamie Smith is your overall FEI division winner the Woodside International Horse Trials. Smith continues to prove she is a force to be reckoned with and this weekend was no different. With nine horses in the FEI divisions and one horse in Training, she was non-stop all weekend. We were able to catch up with Tamie to get her thoughts on the weekend and also hear about the behind the scenes that keep Next Level Eventing (NLE) performing at the top level. Smith is headed to the Galway Downs International Three-Day Event and Tyron International Three-Day Event to finish out the year and if her results here are any indication she will be the one to watch.
Tamie Smith shares thoughts on her weekend:
Erin Kellerhouse and her own Woodford Reserve (Tinaranas Inspector x Laharns Laughton), a 9-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding, finished right behind Smith to secure second place at her first-ever CCI4*-S! Kellerhouse and "Woody" came out of the start box on a mission - "He came out of the box wanting to go fast, I didn't have to push him he wanted to run," Kellerhouse said. Despite one green moment in the corner combination, it was a textbook round for the pair. This was the pair's last run before the CCI4*-L at the Galway Downs International Three-Day Event in a couple of weeks, and with a little fine-tuning in the coming weeks, it's safe to say you will see this pair at the top of the leaderboard there as well.
Rebecca Braitling and Arnell Sporthorses' 9-year-old British Sport Horse gelding Caravaggio (Vangelis-S x Courtesan) had a great weekend, only adding 3.6 time penalties to their dressage score to finish second in the CCI3*-S. "I am thrilled with 'Ernie' - he's such an exciting horse to produce," Braitling conveyed. "I can't speak highly enough of the competition here this weekend, it was top class and the cross-country was seriously impressive." This pair is also headed to the Galway Downs International Three-Day Event in a couple of weeks and we look forward to seeing their success there as well.
Lauren Billys and her own and the Can Be Sweet Syndicate's 8-year-old German Sport Horse gelding Can Be Sweet (Candyman x Tres Belle) were one second over the optimum time to knock them down to second place in the CCI2*-S. The pair had a practically foot-perfect weekend and they will also be headed to the Galway Downs International Three-Day Event in a couple of weeks. Billys also had her own and the Purdy Syndicate LLC's 18-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding Castle Larchfield Purdy (Karistos x Hallo Purdy) in the CCI4*-S and finished competitively in fourth place. This event qualified Billys and "Purdy" for the Toyko Olympics and we could not be more excited for this team. We caught up with Billys to hear her thoughts on the weekend.
Lauren Billys weighs in on the weekend at Woodside:
Preliminary through Introductory finished up their divisions Sunday in what was sure to be a great way to wrap a great event. We want to thank everyone who came out to compete, all of our volunteers, stewards, and officials. We could not do what we love without all of you! Stay safe, and we look forward to seeing everyone at Galway October 28 - November 1.
It’s the turn of the world’s best eventing athletes to stand under the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games spotlight over the next few days as all but one of the horses presented at this morning’s horse inspection at Baji Koen Equestrian Park were confirmed for action by the Ground Jury.
And they're off! Eventing kicks off today in Tokyo (Thursday, July 29 – 7:30 p.m. ET), with the first of three Olympic dressage sessions. Competitors from 29 nations will go head to head, vying for a spot on the coveted Olympic podium.
There were a few last-minute dramas at the first horse inspection for the Tokyo Olympics which took place in the main equestrian park at Baji Koen Equestrian Centre at 9:30 a.m. JST today.