Oct 07, 2020

USEA Horse of the Month: Utah Beach

By Claire Kelley - USEA Staff

The 2020 USEA Future Event Horse (FEH) East Coast Championships recently took place at Loch Moy Farm in Adamstown, Maryland on September 26-27. The Championships judges, Susan Graham White and Robin Walker, judged a total of 39 horses on Saturday and Sunday. The 3- and 4-year-olds went on Saturday and the 2-year-olds and yearlings competed on Sunday. The final age group to compete on Sunday afternoon were the yearlings, and the Oldenburg colt, Utah Beach (Ulmar Mail x Avalan), earned the highest score of the weekend, an 87.15, to be named the FEH East Coast Yearling Overall Champion and Yearling Colt Champion.

As the highest scoring horse at the 2020 FEH East Coast Championships, Utah Beach is the USEA October Horse of the Month! Utah Beach is owned by Monica Fiss and bred by Elizabeth 'Didi' Callahan of Cool Na Grena Sporthorses in Oxford, Maryland.

Utah Beach in-hand with handler Martin Douzant at the USEA FEH East Coast Championships. USEA/Jessica Duffy Photo.

Proud owner Monica Fiss shares more about her smart and playful yearling who has a bright future ahead of him.

  • Barn Name?

“Utah Beach was born on June 6, which is the anniversary of the D-Day invasion of World War II. He was American-bred and his sire is Ulmar Mail so his name needed to start with U. [His breeder, Elizabeth Callahan known as] Didi decided to name him Utah Beach to honor the lesser-known invasion that accompanied D-Day that fought for our freedom. I wanted to honor this and keep the theme for his barn name. I decided to name him Fitch, which was the name of one of the surviving battleships in the Utah Beach invasion. I liked it because he is big, strong, and battleship gray in color.”

  • Favorite Treat?

“Fitch loves treats! He hasn’t met a treat yet that he doesn’t like. He loves carrots, apples, mints, and probably most of all stud muffins. He likes to stick his mouth out his grain scoop opening in his stall for a kiss and a treat.”

  • Personality traits?

“Fitch is very smart and has a playful personality. He is an extrovert and would like to meet (and play with) every horse, person, cat, and dog he crosses paths with. I think he has a touch of ADHD and I imagine eventing will be perfect to occupy his inquisitive mind.”

  • Likes?

“He is agreeable and likes most everything. He has fun free lunging in the arena, likes to jump over poles, and is enamored with the handsome horse in the mirror. He also likes to nibble on everything."

  • Dislikes?

“I can’t really think of anything he doesn’t like. He will pout a bit if we correct him when he’s being ornery.”

  • Future plans?

“I would like to continue the USEA Future Event Horse series as a 2-, 3-, 4-year-old, and possibly consider the Young Event Horse shows if he seems mature enough when the time comes. I want to event this horse and think he could have what it takes to make it to the five-star level. Dream big, right?”

  • Fun facts?

“I take Fitch everywhere with me. If I have an extra stall in the trailer he travels to the shows with us. He went to his first show at six months old and hung out. He has been cross-country schooling with us and liked to touch all the big jumps.”

Utah Beach with handler Martin Douzant (right), owner Monica Fiss (center), and judges Susan Graham-White (far left) and Robin Walker (center left). USEA/Jessica Duffy Photo.

Miss any of the previous 2020 horses of the month? Find out about the USEA January Horse of the Month, USEA February Horse of the Month, USEA March Horse of the Month, USEA April Horse of the Month, USEA May Horse of the Month, USEA June Horse of the Month, USEA July Horse of the Month, USEA August Horse of the Month, and the USEA September Horse of the Month.

About the USEA Horse of the Month

The USEA is recognizing an event horse each month on the USEA website and social media. The USEA Horse of the Month is determined based on performance and event results and announced at the beginning of every month. The October Horse of the Month was determined by the performance at the 2020 USEA FEH East Coast and Central Championships.

Stay tuned for the 2020 USEA FEH West Coast Championships that will run in conjunction with the 2020 USEA Young Event Horse (YEH) Championships at Twin Rivers Ranch in Paso Robles, California on October 23-24.

May 12, 2021 Competitions

Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill Announces $300,000 Prize Money for Inaugural Event

The Fair Hill Organizing Committee (FHOC), an affiliate of the Sport and Entertainment Corporation of Maryland (The Sport Corp.), today announced athletes and horses in the inaugural Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill (CCI5*-L) will be competing for $300,000 in prize money. Additionally, the US Equestrian Federation (USEF) Eventing National Championship (CCI3*-L), running in conjunction with the 5 Star, will award $25,000 in prize money. Both events, as well as the United States Eventing Association (USEA) Young Event Horse East Coast Championships, will take place this October 14-17 at the new Fair Hill Special Event Zone in Cecil County, Maryland.

May 12, 2021 Education

Pre-Purchase Examination 101: With Dr. Shauna Spurlock

You’ve seen a horse you like. You’ve ridden it; you love it. The money’s right; you’ve agreed to buy it. What happens next?

Pre-purchase veterinary examinations are one of those topics that a roomful of horsey people could discuss - and argue amongst themselves about - for hours. For the amateur rider, that can be confusing and slightly alarming.

So, let’s simplify it. What is a pre-purchase examination, why are they done, and what should you expect?

May 11, 2021 Intercollegiate

Eyes on the Prize at the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championships

The USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championships will take place later this month at the Virginia Horse Trials (VHT) in Lexington, Va. across May 27-30. Following the USEF COVID-19 Action Plan, the USEA is working with VHT organizer Andy Bowles to ensure the Championships are still a destination competition for all Intercollegiate event riders, packed full with an opening ceremony, the traditional “college town” area, the prestigious spirit award, and an abundance of prizes.

May 10, 2021 Eventing News

2021 FEI MER Changes effective July 1

The FEI passed rule changes impacting Minimum Eligibility Requirements in November 2020 that go into effect on July 1, 2021. The changes will impact athletes who are uncategorized, “D” and “C” athletes competing at the CCI4*-S, CCI3*-L, CCI4*-L, and CCI5*-L levels. Please see below for the highlighted changes. The USEF requirements to compete at these levels remain unchanged, but please remember that the USEF requirements must be achieved within 12 months of the competition. These changes will be adopted into the USEF Eventing Rulebook by July 1. See Appendix 3 for qualification requirements.

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