Twin Rivers Ranch in the picturesque wine country of Paso Robles, California, is once again the host to the Dutta Corp. USEA Young Event Horse (YEH) and USEA Future Event Horse (FEH) Championships. The Championships consist of six divisions: The Dutta Corp. USEA YEH West Coast 5-year-old and 4-year-old Championships, and the USEA FEH West Coast 4-year-old, 3-year-old, 2-year-old, and Yearling Championships. All six divisions of the Championships competed on Friday with the FEH 2-year-old and yearling classes crowning their champions.
The Future Event Horse Yearling from 2020, Trilogy (Claire de Lune x Honor Jean), returned to justify her previous crowning and to mark up yet another win in the FEH 2-year-old division. Janine Jano, owner, and breeder of the Belgian Warmblood filly was quite thrilled. “For her to have won two years in a row is beyond our wildest expectations,” said Jano. “I am so excited that more than one judge thinks she is as spectacular as they do.”
Jaro not only attributes the filly's success to her handler, Ghislaine Homan-Taylor, but also to pure luck. “I bought the breeding to him [Clair de Lune] at Galway in 2009. I just liked him.”
Standing closely behind in second was Sarah McCarthy’s homebred Connemara gelding, Totality DFEN (Redbuds Blue Moon x She’s Magic) with a score of 76.3. Taking the third spot was Serena Carlson handling her own Ivy League (Iconicus x Diabolus) Oldenberg filly.
The FEH yearling championship was won by Megan Bittle’s homebred, Chammander BDF (Blue Dreamin x CMeFly) Warmblood gelding.
The race for the FEH 3-year-old Championship is closely contested with less than a point between first and second. Rylin Clarke and her Holsteiner filly, NSF Cassiopeia (Chiron x Be A Star) are the overnight leaders with a score of 77.40. Clarke has only owned the filly for six months. “She’s out of one of my favorite mares that I have ever ridden before, “ said Clarke “I want to take her as far as she can go, I think she will like eventing overall. She is super willing to do anything I ask her to do.”
Right on her heels in second is Chloe Smyth with last year’s FEH 2-year-old champion, RSH Goliath (Gringo-Gallipoli x Sam’s Girl). The Hanoverian gelding finished the first day on a score of 77.20.
As well as being presented for confirmation, the FEH 4-year-olds were put through their paces under saddle on Friday. This group of well-behaved youngsters is currently being led by Allyson Hartenburg's Thoroughbred mare, Test Pilot HE (Empire Way x Desert Tony). Sitting in a close second is Emily Russell's Thoroughbred gelding, American Quest (Daddy Nose Best x Shellys Terms).
Both the 3-year old and the 4-year old FEH divisions will demonstrate their aptitude over fences in the jump chute Saturday afternoon.
The beginning of the day consisted of the dressage and conformation portion of the competition for the Dutta Corp. USEA YEH West Coast 4- and 5-year old Championships. The overnight leader in the 5-year-old Championship is Cellar Farm Corp.’s, Lex D (Freeman VDL x Berber) handled by Amber Birtcil.
Sitting on a score of 26.3, Lex D and Birtcil will go into the final phase of the Championship with less than a point between the pair and runner-up, Andrea Baxter and her homebred Dutch Warmblood gelding, Liefhebber (Connect x Vrijbuiter).
The 4-year-olds were also put through their moves this morning in the 4-year-old Championships. Out of the 10 horse field, Jillian Terzian took the lead on Kristi and Randy Nunnink's Thoroughbred gelding NSF R-Twain Star (The Twain x R Star). “I’m really happy with him,” said Terzian, “He was nicely relaxed, he’s just an easy good guy.” Kaylawna Smith sits in second place with Anita Nardine’s Oldenburg gelding, Quinn HSR (Quarterback x Bonne Chance).
YEH competition moves into the jump field today where horses will gallop as well as jump both showjumping and cross country obstacles to demonstrate their ability under tack.
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About the USEA Young Event Horse Program
The Young Event Horse (YEH) Program was first established in 2004 as an eventing talent search. Much like similar programs in Europe, the YEH program was designed to identify young horses aged four and five that possess the talent and disposition to, with proper training, excel at the uppermost levels of the sport. The ultimate goal of the program is to distinguish horses with the potential to compete at the four- and five-star levels, but many fine horses that excel at the lower levels are also showcased by the program.
The YEH program provides an opportunity for breeders and owners to exhibit the potential of their young horses while encouraging the breeding and development of top event horses for the future. The program rewards horses who are educated and prepared in a correct and progressive manner. At qualifying events, youngsters complete a dressage test and a jumping/galloping/general impression phase. At Championships, young horses are also evaluated on their conformation in addition to the dressage test and jumping/galloping/general impression phase. Click here to learn more about the Young Event Horse Program.
The USEA would like to thank Bates Saddles, SmartPak, Standlee Premium Western Forage, Parker Equine Insurance, Etalon Diagnostics, and Saratoga Horseworks for sponsoring the Young Event Horse Program. Additionally, the USEA would like to thank The Dutta Corp., Title Sponsor of the Young Event Horse Championships.
The USEA introduced the Future Event Horse Program in 2007 in response to the popularity of the already established USEA Young Event Horse Program. Where the YEH program assesses 4- and 5-year-old prospective event horses based on their performance, the FEH program evaluates yearlings, 2-year-olds, 3-year-olds, and 4-year-olds for their potential for the sport based on conformation and type. Yearlings, 2-year-olds, and 3-year-olds are presented in-hand while 4-year-olds are presented under saddle at the walk, trot, and canter before being stripped of their tack and evaluated on their conformation. Divisions are separated by year and gender. At the Championships, 3-year-olds and 4-year-olds are also required to demonstrate their potential over fences in an additional free-jump division. Click here to learn more about the Future Event Horse Program.
After several continuous days of rain, the skies cleared over Leesburg, Virginia today as the Morven Park Fall International CCI4*-L got under way with the first horse inspection. Warm weather, bright sunshine, and fall decorations set the stage for 25 horses to present before the ground jury. All 25 horses passed on first inspection. The ground jury consisted of Wayne Quarles (USA), Robert Stevenson (USA), and Sue Baxter (GBR).
While a total of 95 4- and 5-year-old horses will be vying for top-finishes in The Dutta Corp. USEA Young Event Horse (YEH) East Coast Championships next weekend, a select group of YEH graduates are entered in the CCI5*-L division at the second annual MARS Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill Presented by Brown Advisory. The USEA YEH program has run successfully for over 15 years, and many graduates of the program have gone onto compete at the pinnacle of the sport, the FEI 5-Star level of eventing, including the four horses entered in the 2022 Maryland 5 Star.
Founded in 2019, the MARS Bromont Rising U25 Program was initially created to assist up-and-coming riders under the age of 25 in North America who had not yet competed in a destination event, such as the program’s namesake the MARS Bromont CCI in Lac Brume, Quebec, Canada, or been recognized by the USEF programs intended for emerging athletes.. Spearheaded by the late Steve Blauner and Sue Ockendon, the program sought to give back to the sport by helping the next generation of riders get more experience under their belt with the help of the financial assistance provided by the program, and the two days of included instruction from leading coaches around the world.
Strides for Equality Equestrians (SEE) is excited to kick off a two-year anniversary celebration, happening all throughout the month of October in the form of “SEE Month”. SEE’s goal during October is to raise awareness about our mission of opening doors for equestrians from diverse backgrounds while also fundraising to continue our work and future projects.