A total of 41 4-year-olds and 45 5-year-olds are set to compete this week at The Dutta Corp. USEA Young Event Horse (YEH) East Coast Championships which will take place alongside the inaugural Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill in Elkton, Md. Since the USEA YEH program has been running successfully for over 15 years, there are many graduates of the program that have gone on to compete at the highest levels of eventing, including seven horses who are entered to compete in the inaugural Maryland 5 Star.
Indy 500, Dondante, Master Frisky, Quantum Leap, Covert Rights, PFun, and Emporium were once YEH babies competing at the YEH Championships, and now they are ready to tackle the inaugural Maryland 5 Star.
The 16-year-old Thoroughbred mare Indy 500 (Cromwell x TensofThousands) graduated from the YEH program in 2011 after she completed five YEH competitions with top placings. Andrea Baxter, the California native is the longtime owner and rider of Indy 500. Together Baxter and Indy 500 have gone up the levels and have completed some of the toughest tracks in the world. They did the Kentucky Three-Day Event CCI5*-L in 2017, 2018, and 2019 as well as Burghley CCI5*-L in 2018 and 2019. The pair will be looking to complete their sixth competition at the five-star level at Maryland.
Dondante is an Irish Sport Horse gelding sired by Pachio and owned by Team Rebecca LLC and ridden by William Coleman. As a 5-year-old, Dondante finished third with a score of 81.96 in the 2015 YEH East Coast 5-year-old Championship with Coleman in the irons. The now 11-year-old gelding is looking to complete his first five-star competition at Maryland with Coleman.
Emma Lomangino’s 17-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding Master Frisky (Master Imp x Frisky Legs) graduated from the YEH program 12 years ago. First ridden by Kurt Martin, Master Frisky finished third on a score of 79.16 at the 2009 USEA YEH East Coast 5-year-old Championship. One year after the YEH Championships, Kurt successfully piloted the 6-year-old gelding up through the Intermediate level, and in 2012, Boyd Martin acquired the ride. In 2015, Master Frisky made his first five-star appearance at the Kentucky Three-Day Event and finished seventh with Martin. Master Frisky is returning to the five-star level after six years and will be ridden by the five-star first-timer, Emma Lomangino.
The 2016 YEH graduate, Quantum Leap (Quite Capitol x Report to Sloopy) is a 2011 Holsteiner gelding bred by Elizabeth Callahan and owned by Doug Payne. The 10-year-old gelding competed in the 2015 USEA YEH East Coast Championships as a 4-year-old where he finished third and again as a 5-year-old in 2016 where he finished seventh. Two years later, Quantum Leap was the 2018 Holekamp/Turner grant recipient where he and Payne represented the U.S. at the FEI World Breeding Eventing 7-year-old Championships at Le Lion d’Angers. This year Quantum Leap made a successful five-star debut in April at the Land Rover Kentucky Three-Day Event and was recently the Reserve Champion in the $60,000 Adequan USEA Advanced Final at the AEC.
Covert Rights (BFF Incognito x Let's Get It Right) is ridden, owned, and bred by Colleen Rutledge. Covert Rights is a 2011 YEH graduate and finished seventh in the 2011 USEA YEH East Coast 5-year-old Championship and fifth at the 2010 USEA YEH East Coast 4-year-old Championship. Since graduating from the YEH program, Covert Rights and Rutledge have competed at Kentucky multiple times and Burghley. This will be the pair's fifth competition at the five-star level.
Previously known as Fernhill Teddy Two Two, PFun (Tadmus x Celerina) is a 14-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding owned by Jennifer Mosing, ridden by Will Faudree, and bred by Tracy Priest of Ireland. Pfun, who goes by the barn name Teddy, was first introduced to U.S. eventing in 2012 where he competed in the YEH 5-year-old competition with Bobby Costello at Spring Horse Trials at the Ark. In 2013, Will Faudree started competing Teddy and together they have over 16 top-three finishes on their USEA record. In 2017, Faudree and Teddy completed the Kentucky Three-Day Event and will be looking to add another five-star completion to their record.
The Dutch Warmblood gelding, Emporium (Cartano x UPANA) is owned by Ashley Creek Stables and is ridden by Ashlynn Meuchel. The 12-year-old gelding was first ridden by Tamie Smith and graduated from the YEH program in 2014. Now, climbing up the levels with Meuchel, Emporium and Meuchel will both be making their five-star debut at Maryland.
The USEA would like to wish the best of luck to all the YEH East Coast Championship competitors as well as the YEH graduates competing in the Maryland 5 Star!
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.
Regardless of the level at which a horse is competing, its veterinary team is at the forefront of most decisions regarding its career and well-being. Liz Arbittier, VMD, CVA, has been working with equine athletes for over two decades. Graduating from the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn Vet) in 2001, she worked in private practice with a focus on sports medicine and pre-purchase exams until joining Penn Vet’s New Bolton Center Field Service team in 2013. Situated in the heart of Area II’s eventing scene, the team provides ambulatory services to the surrounding area, which is home to multiple Olympians.
US Equestrian (USEF) announces the appointment of David O’Connor to the newly created position of Chief of Sport beginning October 3, 2022.
Aspen Farms in Yelm, Washington was host to this year’s USEA Area VII Championships on September 16-18 and put on a spectacular show where 10 horse and rider pairs celebrated victory by being awarded the title of Area VII Champion in their respective divisions. Hear about each pair’s weekend below.
A double clear cross-country round propelled Rebecca Braitling and Arnell Sporthorses' 11-year-old British Sport Horse gelding Caravaggio II (Vangelis-S x Courtesan) to their first blue ribbon together in the CCI4*-Short, and Haley Turner and her own 12-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding Shadow Inspector (Tinaranas Inspector x Caragh Roller) continued their run of sub-30 dressage tests to win the CCI3*-Short at the 2022 Twin Rivers Fall International in Paso Robles, California.