US Equestrian has announced updates to the Elite, Pre-Elite, and Development Training Lists of U.S. Performance Director Erik Duvander’s U.S. Eventing Pathway Program. Full details on the Pathway Program, including selection criteria for the training lists, are available on the USEF website.
“With just over eight months until the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, it is exciting to have many combinations that could up their game in the spring and show readiness to compete at the Olympic level,” Duvander said. “Tokyo will possibly be one of the most demanding Olympic Games of our time with a new format, logistical challenges, and maximal climate preparation needed for both horses and athletes, both prior to and during the event. Combinations must prove their mental, physical, and technical skills, as well as their ability to work as a team during this upcoming season."
“The increased number of combinations on the training lists shows the growing depth of talent within the country, which is critical as we look to build a strong program for the future. The key areas of focus for the High Performance program will be on competitive performance, horse health and the continued commitment to develop a culture of excellence. With limited resources spread over more combinations, we will be very disciplined in how we allocate grants and time to ensure the best possible impact on overall performance."
The following athletes have been approved for the Elite, Pre-Elite, and Development programs by an Ad Hoc Group of the Eventing Sport Committee at the recommendation of Duvander, with input from Duvander’s Performance Advisory Team of Bobby Costello, Derek di Grazia, Leslie Law, Karen O’Connor, and Ian Stark.
Elite Training List
The Elite Program supports athlete and horse combinations who demonstrate the ability to contribute to medal-winning potential at the World Championship level, with targets measured against world-leading performances and aiming to compete at the next Olympics or World Championship.
The following combinations have been named to the Elite Training List (in alphabetical order):
|•||Phillip Dutton (West Grove, Pa.) and Z, Ann Jones, Caroline Moran, Suzanne Lacy, Simon Roosevelt and Tom Tierney’s 11-year-old Zangersheide gelding|
|•||Boyd Martin (Cochranville, Pa.) and Tsetserleg, Christine Turner’s 12-year-old Trakehner gelding|
Pre-Elite Training List
The Pre-Elite Program aims to identify and support athlete and horse combinations with the perceived potential to meet Elite status within the next two to four years, with the target of competing on a Championship team in the next four years.
The following combinations have been named to the Pre-Elite Training List (in alphabetical order):
|•||Jennie Brannigan (West Grove, Pa.) and Stella Artois, Stella Artois Syndicate’s 11-year-old Holsteiner/Thoroughbred mare|
|•||Will Coleman (Gordonsville, Va.) and Off The Record, Off The Record Syndicate’s 10-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding|
|•||Liz Halliday-Sharp (Ocala, Fla.) and Deniro Z, The Deniro Syndicate and Ocala Horse Properties’ 11-year-old KWPN gelding|
|•||Lauren Kieffer (The Plains, Va.) and Vermiculus, Jacqueline Mars’ 12-year-old Anglo-Arabian gelding|
|•||Marilyn Little (Frederick, Md.) and RF Scandalous, Michael Manders, Phoebe Manders and Jacqueline Mars’ 14-year-old Oldenburg mare|
|•||Boyd Martin (Cochranville, Pa.) and Long Island T, Long Island T Syndicate’s 13-year-old Oldenburg/Thoroughbred gelding, as well as On Cue, Christine Turner’s 13-year-old English Sport Horse mare|
|•||Caroline Martin (Miami Beach, Fla.) and Islandwood Captain Jack, Caroline and Sherrie Martin’s 10-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding|
|•||Doug Payne (Aiken, S.C.) and Vandiver, Debi Crowley, Doug Payne and Jessica Payne’s 15-year-old Trakehner gelding|
|•||Tamie Smith (Murrieta, Calif.) and Mai Baum, Alex Ahearn, Ellen Ahearn and Eric Markell’s 13-year-old German Sport Horse gelding|
|•||Erin Sylvester (Cochranville, Pa.) and Paddy The Caddy, Frank McEntee’s 12-year-old Irish Thoroughbred gelding|
|•||Lynn Symansky (Middleburg, Va.) and RF Cool Play, The Donner Syndicate LLC’s 11-year-old German Sport Horse gelding, as well as Under Suspection, Mary Ann Ghadban’s 15-year-old Holsteiner mare|
|•||Frankie Thieriot Stutes (Occidental, Calif.) and Chatwin, The Chatwin Group’s 11-year-old Oldenburg gelding|
Development Training List
The Development Program aims to support athletes with the perceived talent and ability to reach Elite status in the next four to eight years by focusing on developing the skills needed to progress on the Pathway.
The following athletes have been named to the Development Training List (in alphabetical order):
|•||Maya Black (Clinton, Wash.)|
|•||Katherine Coleman (New Orleans, La.)|
|•||Sydney Elliott (Bossier City, La.)|
|•||Jacob Fletcher (North Little Rock, Ark.)|
|•||Matt Flynn (Reddick, Fla.)|
|•||Ariel Grald (Vass, N.C.)|
|•||Allie Knowles (Lexington, Ky.)|
|•||Sara Mittleider (Kuna, Idaho)|
|•||Alex O’Neal (Reddick, Fla.)|
|•||Mike Pendleton (Waynesboro, Va.)|
|•||Caitlin Silliman (Cochranville, Pa.)|
Applications for the Eventing 25 program are due Friday, November 29, 2019. Program participants will be announced prior to the USEA Annual Meeting & Convention, which will take place in Boston, Massachusetts on December 12-15, 2019. Click here for full details on how to apply.
Please note: The Performance Director may remove an athlete from the Elite and Pre-Elite programs in consultation with the Performance Advisory Team if the athlete fails to meet program criteria. Athletes/horses with a long-term injury will be removed from the training list in consultation with the Performance Advisory Team, Team Veterinarian, and/or Team Physician. Funding may be limited for combinations with short-term injuries. Inclusion or exclusion on a Training List does not imply or preclude an athlete from selection for a Games and Championships. This list will be reviewed in June 2020.
The USEF International High Performance Programs are generously supported by the USET Foundation, USOC, and USEF sponsors and members.
All the major contenders passed the eventing final horse inspection at the Tokyo Olympics and will carry on to contest the show jumping phase in a few hours’ time.
The ground jury (Nick Burton, GBR, Christina Klingspor, SWE, and the U.S.A.’s Jane Hamlin) and vets only failed to accept one horse - Fantastic Frieda, ridden by Poland’s Joanna Pawlak, who had completed the cross-country in 41st place with a refusal and 25.2 time-faults.
The FEI has announced that the Swiss horse Jet Set, ridden by Robin Godel has had to be euthanized after pulling up extremely lame on the Sea Forest Cross Country Course during Equestrian Eventing at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 on August 1, 2021.
In 2002, at the age of 15, I was at my Aunt and Uncle’s farm in Maine while Tremaine Cooper was there building some cross-country jumps. I helped him build a trakehner, not realizing that this day would set the course for my future. A few weeks later he called asking if I could help him at Millbrook Horse Trials. From there I helped Tremaine during most of my school vacations and throughout the summers. After graduating high school I kept at it never looking back. I lived the gypsy lifestyle for about six years going from coast to coast and event to event. In 2013 my wife Kathryn and I settled down in Lexington, Kentucky. These days I spend roughly 60-75 percent of my time on the road preparing events or building private schooling areas. I’ve had the privilege of being involved with some really great events around the states and have cultivated many friendships all over the country. In 2019 I was asked to be a part of Team Evans Olympic cross-country building crew. As I write this I am on my third trip to Tokyo. Here’s a day in Tokyo . . .
The British team cemented their gold medal position at the Tokyo Olympics with three magnificent cross-country performances, all clear inside the time. Added to that, their first rider, Oliver Townend, holds pole position individually after the dressage leader, Germany’s Michael Jung, picked up 11 penalties for triggering a frangible device.