Sep 01, 2022

Two Colic Surgeries and a Torn Tendon Don't Hold Leader of USEA Modified Championship Back at #AEC2022

By Meagan DeLisle - USEA Staff
Madison Langerak and Normandy Kivalo. USEA/ Hope Carlin photo

For Immediate Release: Madison Langerak and Kelly Langerak’s 10-year-old Hungarian Sporthorse Normandy Kivalo (Kalaska De Semilly x Carina) clenched tight to their overnight lead in the USEA Modified Championships during the 2022 American Eventing Championships (AEC) presented by Nutrena Feeds with a double-clear cross-country performance on Thursday afternoon. The partnership goes into the final phase of the Championship with a nearly 7-point lead above the current second-place pair with their impressive dressage score of 20.6.

“He came out of the box and at fence number three, he spooked so hard and I lost my stirrup and I thought he was going to run out,” Langerak shared after her ride. “After that, I sat down and buckled in, and rode harder than I thought I was going to have to and got the job done. Normally he’s pretty slow so I was happy to look at my watch and be up on the time by the end of it.”

While Normandy Kivalo has had what Langerak refers to as a “picture-perfect upbringing in eventing,” it hasn’t come without its challenges. The horse has overcome two colic surgeries and overcome a torn tendon in his career so far. “We were actually headed to Montana a week after he had his first colic surgery where we were supposed to be for our first two-star. And then his first colic surgery happened and then the next year he tore a tendon, then he had another colic surgery and he’s just kind of a disaster—a walking disaster—but every year somehow he makes it out again.” As a testament to that, the pair competed in last year’s AEC held at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky, where they finished in ninth place in the Bates USEA Preliminary Amateur Championship.

“Honestly he’s had such a successful career at Preliminary that he very much could have been doing that but I took him Modified this spring at Spokane and he got a 17 in dressage and he killed cross-country. He won that but he came home a little weird so I kind of just decided to take it easy on him all summer. I just rode him at home and set my sights on this show because obviously, this would mean the most to me. So I really did not do anything this year. I had no plan and I have no plan after this but I just know the horse so well at this point and I know how consistent and reliable he is in the dressage phase in particular that it made it really easy to come out here and perform.”

Looking ahead to the final phase tomorrow, Langerak shared: “I think show jumping is my weakest phase, but my horse usually doesn’t like to touch the poles, so he’ll save me quite a bit. But I’ll kind of be happy with whatever happens tomorrow. It’s nice to show that there are some really talented horses and riders over here, even if the divisions aren’t as big as they were in Kentucky. It’s been nice to showcase him and show what the west coast riders can do.”

In second place is Leonie Padgett riding her 11-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding Cooley Precision (Arkan x IHSD Baronscourt) and rounding out the top three is Ashley Horowitz with her own 6-year-old Thoroughbred mare Tiny Dancer (Fusaichi Pegasus x Burren). The winner of the USEA Modified Championship will be awarded the Ashley Stout Memorial trophy. See full live scores in the USEA Modified Championship here.

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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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Introducing the New Modified Rider Division at the 2023 AEC

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Get a Taste of Eventing with the New Event Horse Program

Are you interested in competing in the sport of eventing but aren’t quite sure how to get started? Do you have a horse that is looking for a new career? Consider participating in a USEA New Event Horse (NEH) competition in 2023! The USEA NEH Program was created to be an introduction to the sport of eventing for both horse and rider, and the 2023 NEH Calendar is now available here.

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Dondante Steps Into The Spotlight with 2022 Standlee USEA Horse of the Year Title

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The VIP Volunteer: Julie Murray

Julie Murray has loved horses since she could breathe, so when her daughters showed an interest in Pony Club and then eventing, she was thrilled to go along for the ride.

Murray started volunteering at the Fallbrook Pony Club near her home in Fallbrook, California, serving as an intermediate district commissioner.

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