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Adrienne Lyle and Wizard Achieve Personal Best in AGDF 12 FEI Grand Prix CDI 5* : Ashley Holzer Guides Tiva Nana to First CDI Win in 3* Grand Prix

March 28, 2014 By: janwest Category: General

Wellington, FL – March 27, 2014 – Adrienne Lyle (USA) and Wizard capped off the first day of competition for the final week of the Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) with a win in the FEI Grand Prix CDI 5* presented by Diamante Farms. The pair earned a personal best score for the grand prix with a 74.160%. Ashley Holzer (CAN) and Tiva Nana scored a blue ribbon finish earlier in the day, winning the FEI Grand Prix CDI 3* presented by Diamante Farms on a score of 70.000%. AGDF 12 is sponsored by Diamante Farms and Wellington Equestrian Realty. 

Friday, March 28, will see the return of “Friday Night Stars” to The Stadium at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC). The featured class, the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI 5*, will begin at 7:00 p.m. on Friday evening. Young rider Bebe Davis will perform her own freestyle exhibition as part of the night’s festivities, and a vocal quartet accompanied by piano from the Frost School of Music at University of Miami will perform throughout the night.

 Watch Adrienne Lyle and Wizard's winning test in the FEI Grand Prix CDI 5*!
Watch Adrienne Lyle and Wizard’s winning test 
in the FEI Grand Prix CDI 5*!

Adrienne Lyle was also presented with the Champion Equine Insurance Dressage Style Award and a crystal horse from Swarovski for her win in the FEI Grand Prix 5*. The American rider topped the class with Wizard, a 15-year-old Oldenburg gelding owned by Peggy Thomas. Second place went to fellow American Tina Konyot and Calecto V for their score of 72.720%, while Danish rider Mikala Gundersen rounded out the top three with My Lady and a score of 72.520%.

 

Lyle was thrilled to post her all-time grand prix high score with Wizard in the on Thursday evening. A triumphant return to the ring was the best she could have asked for after having to withdraw Wizard from the AGDF 10 CDI W.

 

“I was thrilled with him. He felt fresh and happy and really amazing for being the end of a long season,” Lyle grinned. “That’s my best grand prix score I’ve had on him in our career, and I think the most rideable; the best combination of him having energy, and he was listening to me.”

Adrienne Lyle and Wizard

She continued, “It was a little nerve-wracking. We were entered for the [CDI] W [during AGDF 10] but he got himself cast in his stall. He came out with banged up legs the day before the jog. We made the decision to scratch and not try to get him through it since he wasn’t a hundred percent. It was hard to go home and sit out a couple of weeks. Everyone is wondering what’s wrong, and of course they always think it’s the worst and you’re never going to come back. So it was nice to come back and do really well.”

 

Lyle admitted to having a good feeling about their test, but insisted a rider can never really know when they’re going to have the “test of tests” before it’s over. Her main focus, and possibly the difference in their score, was the extended trot.

 

“I think he’s got a great, amazing, trot extension, but I think we lose a little balance. He gets a little tight, and we’ve done some skip steps a couple times. So we came in around the outside of the arena, and I really made him gallop around a couple times and got going. I felt like I was able to ride it, not to not have a mistake, but to have more power and really go for it and not feel like I was being conservative,” Lyle described.

 

Lyle will forgo the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle 5* on Friday, opting instead to contest the FEI Grand Prix Special 5* in preparation for the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG) selection trials.

 

“I love doing the freestyle with him, but he just had a couple weeks off and he hasn’t been working that much before the show, I thought it would be smarter to put him in the special. He doesn’t need to get himself all hyped up again. I’ve done the freestyle the last two shows. I think I need to get back to focusing on the special a little for the trials,” Lyle explained.

 

Second place finisher Konyot is known for her jubilant expressions after a test with Calecto, but explained that her serious look on Thursday evening was not a reflection of the overall test.

 

“I was happy, actually. I’ve been trying to get a little bit cleaner grand prix. I’ve had several shows with so many mistakes in my grand prix, so I was much, much, happier with my grand prix,” Konyot said. “Until the end. He really cheated me at the end, he stopped very early and thought it was over. He did his final halt-salute and there was no budging. He just caught me a little bit by surprise because he can do a little bit further than that.”

 

Konyot pointed out her canter tour as the highlight of the test for her, along with a trot tour she thought was well done. With the FEI World Cup Dressage Finals next on her calendar, she was pleased to have achieved her main goal for the class.

 

“I felt great because I had a better grand prix. I often have quite a good freestyle, and since I am leading North America and going to the World Cup, I was happy that I could have a better grand prix. That was something that I was looking towards,” Konyot said.

 

Gundersen and My Lady have a different championship competition looming; their sights are set on the Danish Championships, an event Gundersen described as one with the most pressure of the season. The show plays a large role in choosing the Danish team for the WEG this fall.

 

Gundersen has been more than satisfied with how My Lady has progressed throughout the season in Wellington, describing her test on Friday evening as very rideable and supple.

 

“I could have had a little more energy from behind, but I had a lot of really good movements. There were some things that I worked very hard on, to get better, and they were. I look at my scores and see that they got better, and then I lost a bit on other things,” Gundersen shared.

 

“That’s how it is,” she continued. “You go to shows and you feel like ‘Oh I need to improve this,’ and then you go home and work on that. Maybe you lose something else a little bit on the way. I think in the end, we’ll get it all together. For me, it’s most important when I get to the Danish championships in the summer that it should all be there.”

 

On behalf of all the riders, Gundersen expressed her gratitude for the AGDF hosting a 5* event and thanked the sponsors of the show for their generosity.

 

“It’s amazing. I think this season, we’ve always had something to ride towards. Either World Cup points or the five star,” Gundersen pointed out. “It’s amazing to have all of this. For one, all the money that’s being sponsored in this class. And then, for us, we’re always thinking about world ranking points, and [a five star] counts a little extra there. So it’s a big deal.”

 

In only her second outing at the CDI level, Tiva Nana enjoyed a victory with Ashley Holzer earlier in the day during the FEI Grand Prix 3*. Holzer finished at the top of the class with a score of 70.000%, while American Laura Graves took second with Verdades on a score of 69.140%. Third place went to Megan Lane (CAN) and Caravella, who earned a score of 69.120%.

Ashley Holzer and Tiva Nana

Tiva Nana, a 14-year-old KWPN mare, has been owned by Marissa Mastranardi for the past five and a half years. When Mastranardi asked trainer Holzer to ride the mare in September, she handed the reins over to her full-time.

 

“Ashley started riding her in September, just her riding her, and it was going so well that I was like, ‘Take her! See what happens,'” Mastranardi recounted. “Obviously, having Ashley on her is the best thing for the horse and for her education. I’m more than thrilled with how it’s been going.”

 

Tiva Nana, known as “Nina” in the barn, has continued to step up to the plate as she has progressed up the levels. Thursday was only the horse’s second CDI and fourth time completing a grand prix test.

 

“She’s getting better and better every time. It’s really cool to watch,” Mastranardi smiled. “It wouldn’t happen without a rider like Ashley. If I was in there, I’d be like, ‘Oh, I know it’s scary!’ Ashley knows how to make adjustments and give her confidence in the ring.”

 

For Holzer, Thursday’s test, and subsequent win, was a pleasant surprise. “I thought that it was far more in control than the last week! I think that the harmony was much better. I thought her accuracy and her harmony were just really top-notch today. Her focus was better. As a horse, I felt like I had a partner that was really tuned into me.”

 

Holzer admitted she would have to rethink her plan after what the mare showed her in the ring. “I have to sit down and really rethink that after today. She really showed me something in this main ring. We thought she would take a much longer time to settle in this big ring,” Holzer acknowledged.

 

She continued, “She really has very little experience so this is quite a shocker. When they said to me in the barn today, ‘Ok so try to give a 70?’ and I was like ‘Pfft! Yeah right! Give me a break, I was pretty amazed with 68 last week.’ But she went in and was just a joy to ride. She’s so much fun. She’s a very nice horse to ride.”

 

Second place finisher Graves was thrilled with Verdades’ rideability throughout the test, noting that the pair have enjoyed great improvement over the last three months at the AGDF. She’s worked with Olympian Debbie MacDonald since the beginning of the circuit on various aspects of Verdades’ training.

 

“It’s gotten so much better since our first CDI. It’s a little sad that the season is over for us, because we’re kind of hungry for more and hitting our stride,” Graves explained.

 

Graves has her sights set on the Festival of Champions in Gladstone, NJ, which also serve as the selection trials for the American team to go to the WEG.

 

“We’ll spend the next two months really training hard, and hopefully, depending on how everything shakes out on the West Coast and who decides to go to Gladstone [New Jersey, for the Festival of Champions], we’re crossing our fingers that this might give us a ticket.”

 

Of her test today, Graves pointed out the biggest turning point for the test was the piaffe, which she admitted she had been going down centerline and “praying” to go well in each previous test.

 

“There’s nothing more terrifying than having to do something on a centerline and just having to go in there and praying. That’s pretty much all we’ve been doing, because he wouldn’t let me touch him,” Graves explained.

 

She continued, “He’s so worked up and he tries so hard, and you touch him with your legs or your hand, and he would just get all out of sorts. To be able to put my leg on a little, or actually ride a half-halt in the piaffe is kind of cool. Hopefully one day it will actually be a highlight for everyone to watch, so that’s where we’re going.”

 

Lane has also focused on progress at each competition with Caravella. The pair won the FEI Grand Prix Special during AGDF 1, and both rider and horse have benefitted from the experience of six CDIs over the course of the season.

 

“I think both her and I are relatively inexperienced, so the more we get out there, the better. Coming to Wellington, you can only get it here,” Lane pointed out.

 

She continued, “Progress is always in my mind, so with every show I look for progress in some area. Today, the piaffe-passage tour was definitely the highlight. Normally, that’s a little bit tricky.”

 

With Caravella, it’s just a matter of channeling her nervous energy into precise focus in the show ring. “Although she’s extremely talented, she gets a little nervous in the piaffe, which affects our transition to passage. Today, that was excellent. I was really happy with her,” Lane smiled.

 

Junior and Young Rider competition kicked off the first day of the AGDF 12 CDI 3*/5*. Paula Matute (ESP) earned top call in the FEI Junior Team aboard Firmamento Ymas with a score of 70.946%. In the Young Rider Team Prix St. Georges test, it was Laurence Tetreault (CAN) and Lowelas who emerged victorious. The pair earned a score of 68.860% for the first place prize.

 

In a special award of the night, Lars Petersen (DEN) was presented with the FEI Grand Prix Circuit Championship for his scores with Mariett. They had the highest cumulative of average scores competing at a minimum of four CDI competitions at the AGDF.

ESP’s Cora Causemann with Lars Petersen

Competition for the AGDF 12 CDI 3*/5*, presented by Diamante Farms and Wellington Equestrian Realty, will continue on Friday at 8:00 a.m. with the FEI Prix St. Georges. The FEI Grand Prix Special 5* will begin at approximately 3:30 p.m. and the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle 3* will follow at approximately 4:45 p.m. The featured class of the week, the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI 5*, will begin at 7:00 p.m. For more information and complete results, please visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.

 

Full Results for the FEI Grand Prix 5*, presented by Diamante Farms

Rider, Country, Horse, Breeding, Age: Judge E%, Judge H%, Judge C%, Judge M%, Judge B%, Total %

1 Adrienne Lyle, USA, Wizard, 15-year-old Oldenburg gelding owned by Peggy Thomas, Pica x Weltmeyer: 72.300%, 76.200%, 74.200%, 71.900%, 76.200%, 74.160%

 

2 Tina Konyot, USA, Calecto V, 16-year-old Danish Warmblood stallion owned by rider, Bahera x Come Back II: 72.200%, 72.900%, 73.800%, 70.400%, 74.300%, 73.720%

 

3 Mikala Gundersen, DEN, My Lady, 14-year-old Danish Warmblood mare owned by Janne Rumbough, Marion x Michellino: 72.400%, 71.900%, 72.700%, 71.600%, 74.000%, 72.520%

 

4 Shelley Francis, USA, Doktor, 11-year-old Oldenburg gelding owned by Patricia Stempel, Gurena x Diamond Hit: 72.700%, 72.800%, 74.800%, 71.800%, 70.500%, 72.520%

 

5 Belinda Trussell, CAN, Anton, 14-year-old Sachsen gelding owned by Robyn Eames, Shirley x Anteaus: 71.000%, 74.700%, 73.100%, 71.500%, 70.000%, 72.060%

 

6 Cesar Parra, USA, Van the Man, 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding owned by Michael Davis, Lady x Obelisk: 70.700%, 69.000%, 72.300%, 70.100%, 72.500%, 70.920%

 

7 Lars Petersen, USA, Mariett, 16-year-old Danish Warmblood mare owned by Marcia M. Pepper, Zendi x Comeback II: 70.800%, 68.500%, 71.300%, 68.000%, 71.500%, 70.020%

 

8 David Marcus, CAN, Chrevi’s Capital, 14-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding owned by Deborah Kinzinger-Miculinic, Indira Gandhi x Obelisk: 69.300%, 70.500%, 71.700%, 69.000%, 69.000%, 69.900%

 

Full Results for the FEI Grand Prix 3*, presented by Diamante Farms

Rider, Country, Horse, Breeding, Age: Judge E%, Judge H%, Judge C%, Judge M%, Judge B%, Total %

1 Ashley Holzer, CAN, Tiva Nana, 14-year-old KWPN mare owned by Marissa Mastranardi, Nana Linda x De Kennedy Stoeterij: 71.000%, 69.200%, 69.200%, 70.500%, 70.100%, 70.000%

 

2 Laura Graves, USA, Verdades, 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding owned by rider, Liwilarda x Florrett As: 69.900%, 70.600%, 64.300%, 71.300%, 69.600%, 69.140%

 

3 Megan Lane, CAN, Caravella, 13-year-old KWPN Mare owned by rider, P. Riviera x Contango: 68.800%, 69.400%, 66.700%, 71.100%, 69.600%, 69.120%

 

4 Christilot Boylen, CAN, Hudson 18, 10-year-old Oldenburg gelding owned by Jean & Gary van der Ploeg, Pretty Lady x Donnerhall: 68.300%, 67.000%, 67.400%, 69.000%, 69.000%, 68.140%

 

5 Kasey Perry, USA, Trøstplund’s Scarlet, 15-year-old Danish Warmblood mare owned by Diane Perry, Ramona x Blue Hors Don Shufro: 68.500%, 68.900%, 66.500%, 70.200%, 66.600%, 68.140%

 

6 Devon Kane, USA, Destiny, 11-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding owned by Diamante Farms, Rubenstein I x Diamond Hit: 67.000%, 67.800%, 67.400%, 69.500%, 68.800%, 68.100%

 

7 Lars Petersen, DEN, Willano, 12-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding owned by rider, Aleksina x Willemoes: 67.300%, 67.300%, 65.100%, 66.600%, 68.900%, 67.040%

 

8 Jill Irving, CAN, Degas 12, 12-year-old Hanoverian gelding owned by rider, Rosana M x De Niro: 66.600%, 66.400%, 64.500%, 65.600%, 65.700%, 65.760%

 

Photo Credit: Photos © SusanJStickle.com. These photos may be used only in relation to this press release and must include photo credit.

About the Adequan Global Dressage Festival:The Adequan Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) is one of the world’s largest international and national dressage circuits featuring 8 FEI Dressage events, including a 5* and the only FEI Nations’ Cup Series CDIO in the Western Hemisphere. The AGDF offers more than $400,000 in prize money for the six international competitions, making it one of the richest circuits in the world. The Stadium at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center facility includes the Van Kampen covered arena (made possible by Kimberly and Frederic Boyer and family) and four outdoor arenas with world-class footing, 200 permanent stalls, and a VIP seating area for the International Arena fully catered for relaxing and having an enjoyable experience.

Please visit

www.globaldressagefestival.com

www.equestriansport.com

or call 561-793-5867 for more information.

Adequan Global Dressage Festival is located at

The Stadium at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center

13500 South Shore Blvd, Wellington, Florida 33414

Victoria Colvin Captures Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series

March 28, 2014 By: janwest Category: General

Wellington, Florida – Victoria Colvin emerged the winner of the fourth annual Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series (AFYRGPS), presented by The Dutta Corp. in association with Guido Klatte.  With four different competitions held throughout the 12-week FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, FL, the Series attracted more than 50 participants competing for increased prize money under FEI sanctioning.Following three qualifying events, the top 30 riders in the overall standings were invited to contest the $50,000 CSIU25 Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series Final.  Held Sunday morning, March 23, at The Stadium, riders and horses alike enjoyed competing on the expansive grass field.  Following a seven-horse jump-off, Alexander Zetterman of Sweden emerged victorious riding Flecu in the Series Final.  However, Victoria Colvin was at the top of the leaderboard coming into the final event and, despite having four faults with Don Juan, maintained her lead to emerge as the overall winner of the 2014 Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series.

“The Series helps build confidence; you just keep doing more classes and jumping higher and going up against better riders,” said Colvin, who participated in all four qualifying events this year with Don Juan.  “I’m used to doing the High Juniors, which are really high and have good riders, too, but this is another step up.  There are amazing riders in the Series, including people over 18.  It’s a step up from Juniors, but it is between having to compete against someone like Mclain Ward.  It is a lot of fun and it makes you feel more confident that you are going to do well.”

Open to riders aged 16 to 25, regardless of nationality, the AFYRGPS was designed by Carlene and Andy Ziegler of Artisan Farms to provide a bridge between the junior and amateur divisions to the grand prix level, allowing up and coming riders to gain experience at the upper levels of show jumping sport while still competing against their peers.

At only 16 years of age, Colvin was one of the youngest riders in this year’s AFYRGPS.  As the overall champion, Colvin was awarded a Bruno Delgrange saddle valued at $6,000, and was presented with an invitation to compete at the CSI2* Chantilly Horse Show, part of the Global Champions Tour, held from July 25-27 in France.  In addition to their entry, the winner also receives two tickets to the Chantilly VIP lounge and transportation for one horse generously provided by The Dutta Corp. in association with Guido Klatte.

“It is amazing!” exclaimed Colvin, who is based year-round in Wellington, Florida.  “I get to go somewhere other than Florida!”

16-year-old Victoria Colvin riding Don Juan won the 2014 Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series at the FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Florida. Photo by Sportfot

16-year-old Victoria Colvin riding Don Juan won the 2014 Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series at the FTI Consulting Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Florida.
Photo by Sportfot

Canada’s Jordan Macpherson, who has participated in the AFYRGPS since its inception, was crowned the reserve champion in this year’s Series.  The 24-year-old university student from Toronto, ON, trains with 10-time Canadian Olympian Ian Millar and his children, Jonathon and Amy.

“This Series is portrayed and modeled as a stepping stone, so the course designers and the riders treat it as such; it’s more challenging and more technical without over-facing either the horse or the rider,” said Macpherson who rode her young mount, Aanwinst, in the first two events and her veteran partner, Piccobello du Val de Geer, in the final two events.  “I think it’s a great structure, and it gives the riders and the horses more experience in different situations.  Having the team event under the lights gives it more pressure, too.  There is nowhere else that you get to compete as a team without it being a nations’ cup which is great, because how else are you supposed to learn how to work as a team without being able to practice it?”

Macpherson continued, “I think it’s wonderful that so many people and companies are sponsoring and supporting the Artisan Farms Series this year.  Thank you to Artisan Farms and everyone involved for giving us such amazing opportunities.”

New for 2014, participants in the AFYRGPS were invited to apply for a one-year sponsorship with equestrian clothing apparel company, Equiline.  Riders submitted essays outlining why they felt they would be ideal candidates, conducted interviews, did sponsorship networking, and were observed for attitude, spirit and performance while competing in the AFYRGPS.  Last year’s winner of the AFYRGPS, Chloe D. Reid of Washington, D.C., was awarded the Equiline sponsorship, while additional awards were presented to Caitlin Ziegler for Best Essay, Lucas Porter for Most Creative Essay, and Nicole Bellissimo for Best Interview.  Wilton Porter earned the Equiline Amateur Sportsmanship Award.

Colvin now joins an elite list of champions in the Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series.  Previous winners include Reed Kessler of the United States (2011), Nayel Nassar of Egypt (2012) and Chloe D. Reid of the United States (2013), all of whom are currently enjoying incredible success as their careers advance.

“I am really pleased with the progression of the Series,” said Carlene Ziegler, who is the driving force behind the Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series.  “We added some new things this year, we made it more of a true championship in the way that you went through the four different classes and that you had to qualify for the Final, which was a $50,000 FEI class.  We feel it is very important to provide the next generation with a spring board that is both relevant and beneficial as they progress.”

With over 50 entries this year alone, it’s obvious that the Series is not only popular, but also succeeding in its objectives.

Victoria Colvin is presented as the winner of the Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series.  From left to right:  Ringmaster Gustavo Murcia, Tim Dutta, Carlene Ziegler, Victoria Colvin, Christian Paillot, Michael Stone and Guido Klatte. Photo by Sportfot

Victoria Colvin is presented as the winner of the Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series. From left to right: Ringmaster Gustavo Murcia, Tim Dutta, Carlene Ziegler, Victoria Colvin, Christian Paillot, Michael Stone and Guido Klatte.
Photo by Sportfot

“It’s been nice to see the riders themselves progress,” said Ziegler.  “We are attracting a new crop of riders each year and it’s really gratifying to see their progress.  One of the most gratifying parts is being able to provide a stepping stone up to the next level for these young riders.  The first year that we did this, we knew that we had a very strong group of riders – we had Reed Kessler for the win and we had a group of riders that went to Leipzig that included Reed Kessler, Charlotte Jacobs, Caitlin Ziegler, and Katie Dinan – these are people who have now truly made the next step, and our Series helped provide that for them.  The second year we had Nayel Nassar, who is now leading the west coast standings for the World Cup Finals.  That’s very exciting!  We hope that the same level of success happens for the more recent winners as well, and we think that it can.”

Ziegler continued, “One of the things that is exciting for this year is that we are giving the winner the opportunity to go to the Chantilly show.  It is a Global Champions Tour show in the most beautiful location in France.  It’s something that these young riders wouldn’t have had the opportunity to do.  I think it’s a big incentive to the participants in the Series.  Additionally, that they had the opportunity to vie for a sponsorship with Equiline is something that they wouldn’t have gotten to do otherwise.”

Riders aged 16 to 25, regardless of nationality, are eligible to participate in the AFYRGPS, which provides a valuable stepping stone from the junior and amateur ranks to the grand prix level.  Featuring fences set at 1.45m, this year’s AFYRGPS offered four events held in three different venues, exposing developing grand prix riders to everything from competing on grass and in a team format, to jumping under the lights at night.

Leading by example, Artisan Farms is committed to the continued improvement and promotion of competitive show jumping.  Based in Wellington, FL, and Vrasene, Belgium, Artisan Farms is home to rising amateur Andy Ziegler, young professional Caitlin Ziegler, 2008 Olympic Champion Eric Lamaze, and Olympian Tiffany Foster.

2014 Artisan Farms Young Rider Grand Prix Series – Final Standings

1. Victoria Colvin – 59

2. Jordan Macpherson – 53

3. Wilton Porter – 47

4. Jennifer Goddard – 44

5. Hayley Barnhill – 41

6. Sarah Hubbard – 36

Buzz Welker Memorial Polo Tournament Helps Sport’s Growth At Grand Champions Polo Club

March 28, 2014 By: janwest Category: General

Hope Arellano of Polographics outraces defender downfield on her Best Playing Pony. Photo by Scott Fisher

WELLINGTON, FL-March 17, 2014-—The Buzz Welker Memorial Tournament offered junior polo players of all ages and ability levels a chance to improve their skills and have fun at the same time Monday at Grand Champions Polo Club.

With more than 80 players, polo’s grass roots level never looked better during the Polo Training Foundation event.

More than twenty teams and 80 kids competed in the PTF Florida Junior polo tournament. Player skill level ranged from advanced to intermediate, lower levels and lead-line for young children.

“We are very happy with the progress,” said PTF tournament director Jennifer McLeavy. “We have had close to 250 kids play last year and probably more this year. We are growing every year.

Leon Donoso, 4, concentrates on hitting the ball during the lead line. 
Photo by Scott Fisher

“We are trying to focus on encouraging more lead line and getting the older kids to cheer on the lead line,” McLeavy said. “We had kids come over from the horse show for the walk-trot. They had never been introduced to polo before. This was their second tournament and they had a blast.”

Several pro and amateur polo players watched proudly from the sidelines as their children competed including Adolfo Cambiaso, Juan Bollini, Mariano Aguerre, Sebastian Merlos, Matias Magrini, Marc and Melissa Ganzi, Horton Schwartz, Leo Mandelbaum and Bob Daniels.

Lion Mandelbaum, 5, riding Christmas Tree, is looking at his saddle while waiting for his turn in lead line. Photo by Scott Fisher

“Coming to watch them play is one thing, you expect that of the parents,” McLeavy said. “What’s nice is to see them changing a kid’s stirrups, fixing their mallet, coaching them from the sidelines. A lot of these guys don’t change their own stirrups or tack their own horses up, but there they are for their little kids.”

Ten-year-old Landen Daniels is one of six boys who play polo in his family. He has been playing four years.

“I am happy playing today,” said Daniels, who scored four goals for his winning team Polographics. “Polo is fun and competitive. It’s hard when you first start out and a challenge.”

Jack McLean of Tato’s Mallets leans out of his saddle for the ball in front of Casablanca players Matias Gonzalez, Matt Cohen and Benji Daniels. Photo by Scott Fisher

His father, Bob Daniels, who started playing at age 40, couldn’t be happier with his sons playing in junior tournaments.

“It’s great fun,” Daniels said. “It helps me inside. There is nothing like your kid playing well in a tournament or winning a tournament for your inner feelings. It’s very gratifying.”

Older sons Justin and Benji have been playing alongside their dad during the Grand Champions at PB Polo season at various levels and also competed in Monday’s tournament.

Polographics player Hope Arellano, pretty in pink helmet, mallet and horse wraps, played tough defense during her team’s winning four-chukker game. 
Photo by Scott Fisher

“It’s great because they enjoy it,” Daniels said. “They have a lot of friends and meet very interesting people. You never know where it’s going to lead.”

Said Justin Daniels, 14, a freshman at St. Andrew’s: “This kind of polo tournament is a lot of fun. It’s not as competitive. We still want to win but if we lose we are cool about it. When I play with pros they are always giving me advice and telling me what to do. In kids polo, we have to make our own decisions and learn more.”

Casablanca players try to rally against Tato’s Mallets in the featured game final. Photo by Scott Fisher

Santos Bollini has grown up around polo. His father Juan is a former 8-goaler and older brother Juancito plays pro tournaments.

“Playing these kind of junior tournaments you feel like you have more responsibility and should do more for your team,” Bollini said. “I have played this tournament my whole life. It’s much more fun because you are playing with and against your friends.”

In the featured game, Tato’s Mallets (Jack McLean, Liam Lott, Lucas Arellano, Segundo Merlos) held off a late rally by Casablanca (Benjamin Daniels, Matias Gonzalez, Matt Cohen, Ian MacTaggart) to win, 4-3.

Casablanca’s Matias Gonzalez (2) battles for the ball. Photo by Scott Fisher

Tato’s Mallets jumped out to a 3-1 lead in the opening chukker behind McLean’s two goals and Arellano’s penalty shot. Gonzalez rallied his team with three goals but time ran out.

In the consolation game, Grand Champions defeated Red Barn, 2-1, behind Grant Ganzi’s winning goal.

Segundo Merlos was named Most Valuable Player and Mia Astrada was given the Sportsmanship Award. Grant Ganzi’s horse X-Box was named Best Playing Pony.

In the four chukker game, Polographics (Landen Daniels, Mia Cambiaso, Hope Arellano, Matias MacDonough Jr.) defeated Alex Photo (Poroto Cambiaso, Timmy Dutta, Kristos Magrini, Santos Merlos), 8-1.

Mia Cambiaso of Polographics shows her Most Valuable Player swing. 
Photo by Scott Fisher

Mia Cambiaso, daughter of 10-goaler Adolfo Cambiaso, was named Most Valuable Player. Santos Merlos earned the Sportsmanship Award.

Landen Daniels led Polographics with four goals and assisted on two others.

Grand Champions Polo Club owners Melissa and Marc Ganzi provided three polo fields, horses, umpires, food and refreshments from two food trucks, Miami-based Che Grill and Wellington-based Sweet Cravings, face painting for kids and entertaining announcer Dale Schwetz who helped spectators follow the various games, walk-trot and lead line.

Face painting was a big hit during the afternoon tournament for kids including 7-year-old Elsa Braden. Photo by Scott Fisher

Melissa Ganzi is secretary-treasurer of the Polo Training Foundation and big supporter of junior polo and attracting more kids to the sport at the grass roots level.

The tournament was named in honor of Buzz Welker, a former polo player who shared his love for the game with everyone. Before his life ended, Welker played in 16 countries and played with several celebrities including Prince Charles, the Sultan of Brunei and actor Tommy Lee Jones.

Welker died in 2006 at age 69. He was the founder and leader of the Franklin Polo Association and headed major polo clubs in Texas, Florida and Dominican Republic.

More than 70 junior polo players of various ages and skill level competed in the Buzz Welker Memorial Tournament. Photo by Scott Fisher

For full results of the Buzz Welker Memorial Tournament and more information on juniors polo visit the Polo Training Foundation website.

For game recaps, news, features and photos of Grand Champions Polo Club-related events, go towww.grandchampionspoloclub.org.

Game video and live webcasts can also be seen at PoloNow Network at http://www.polonow.tv/.

Players, lined up at Che Grill, worked up an appetite competing in the Buzz Welker Memorial Tournament. Photo by Scott Fisher

2014 HIGH GOAL SEASON

MARCH 7-23: USPA Piaget Gold Cup: WEDNESDAY, Valiente vs. Audi, 1 p.m.; Lechuza Caracas vs. Alegria, 3 p.m.; THURSDAY,   Butler Handicap Semifinals, Crab Orchard vs. Orchard Hill, 1 p.m.; Flight Options vs. Coca-Cola, 3 p.m.; MARCH 23, Butler Handicap Final, noon; USPA Piaget Gold Cup Final, 3 p.m.

MARCH 26-APRIL 20: 110th Maserati U.S. Open Polo Championships

GRAND CHAMPIONS AT PALM BEACH POLO 2014 TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE (HOTLINE 561-373-0073)

MARCH: Madelon Bourdieu Memorial (5-goal); The Limited Edition 8-Goal Series; The Top Pony 12-Goal Series; March 18-30, Santa Rita Abierto (16 goals); March 23-31, March 23-31, $50,000 National 12-Goal Tournament.

THIS WEEK’S SCHEDULE

TUESDAY: 12-goal, Hawk Hill vs. Casablanca, 3 p.m.; WEDNESDAY: 12-goal, Pony Express vs. Palm Beach Equine, 4 p.m.; THURSDAY: 8-goal, Equuleus vs. Tonchala, 4 p.m.; FRIDAY: 8-goal, Far Niente vs. Tonchala, 4 p.m.; 5-goal, Grand Champions vs. Elegante Polo, 4 p.m.; SATURDAY: 12-goal, Bracket Handcap Final, 1 p.m.; Bracket Final, 3 p.m.; SUNDAY: 8-goal, Hawk Hill vs. TLC Development, 10 a.m.; 5-goal, SLS Jets vs. Patagones Azul, 10 a.m. and Pony Express vs. Grand Champions, noon.

SANTA RITA ABIERTO 16-GOAL TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE

TUESDAY: Equuleus vs. Goose Creek; March 21: KIG vs. Casablanca; March 23: KIG vs. Equuleus; March 25: KIG vs. Goose Creek and Casablanca vs. Equuleus; March 28: Goose Creek vs. Casablanca; March 30: Championship final.

APRIL: Las Acacias (5-goal); USPA Association Cup (8- goal); Museum of Polo & Hall of Fame Challenge Cup (12-goal); John T. Oxley Memorial Trophy (16-goal).

GRAND CHAMPIONS POLO CLUB SCHEDULE (561-644-5050)

APRIL 4-5: Fifth annual Gay Polo League International Tournament

APRIL 8-12: Women’s Championship Tournament

GRAND CHAMPIONS AT PALM BEACH POLO 2014 SPRING SCHEDULE (561-644-5050)

APRIL 17-19: Grand Champions Cup

APRIL 24-27: The USPA Spring Challenge

MAY 1-4: The USPA Sun Cup

MAY 8-11: The USPA Eastern Challenge

MAY 15-18: The Polo Gear Challenge Cup

MAY 22-26: The Memorial

GRAND CHAMPIONS POLO CLUB

WHERE: 13444 Southfields Road, on the corner of South Shore Boulevard and Lake Worth Road, Wellington, 33414.

INFORMATION: There are great field side views for tournament action at the home base of pro teams Audi and Flight Options. Everyone is welcome to watch high, medium and low goal polo in a relaxed atmosphere during the winter, spring and fall tournament season and other special events including International Cup in November, Buzz Welker Memorial Junior Tournament in March, ProKidz Tournaments in the spring and fall, Women’s Championship Tournament and Gay Polo League International Tournament, both in April.

Canadian Para-Dressage Riders Victorious in International Team Competition

March 24, 2014 By: janwest Category: General

Ottawa, ON, March 15, 2014 —– Canadian Para-Dressage riders continued to post top scores during the second day of competition on their way to winning the overall team event at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival 10 CPEDI3*. The annual FEI competition is being held at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center, March 14-16, in Wellington, FL.Using the combined scores from the Team Test, held March 14, and the Individual Test, on March 15, Canadians Robyn Andrews, Lauren Barwick, Ashley Gowanlock and Jody Schloss won the team competition with a total of 418.803%, while the host nation, United States, finished second with 410.536%.

 The Canadian Para-Equestrian Team, comprised of Ashley Gowanlock, Jody Schloss, chef d’équipe Elizabeth Quigg, Robyn Andrews and Lauren Barwick, won the overall team competition at Adequan Global Dressage Festival 10 CPEDI3*.
For the second day in a row, Barwick of Aldergrove, BC was victorious in Grade II. Riding her own 15-year-old Oldenburg mare, Ferdonia 2, Barwick won the Individual Test, scoring 71.238%. With her second horse, Equine Canada’s 13-year-old Oldenburg mare, Off to Paris, Barwick finished in third with 66.762%.”I was extremely pleased with both my horses today,” said Barwick, who is a three-time Paralympian and a 2008 Paralympic gold and silver medalist. “Ferdonia came through for me. She allowed me to push her to the next stage in her training in the competition arena, and it showed in the results. Paris’ trot work was phenomenal, but sadly I had too long of a warm-up.”

Gowanlock, of Surrey, BC rode the Grade Ib Individual Test on Collegiate Sweet Leilani, M. Kendalyne Overway’s 13-year-old Morgan mare, to a score of 70.000%, which placed the pair in second overall.

“Today was a fantastic learning day. We tested everything including warm-up times and energy levels,” said Gowanlock, who is forming a new partnership with Collegiate Sweet Leilani as this is their first FEI competition together. “I am really looking forward to the Freestyle tomorrow. I want to turn on the music and just go.”

In the Grade Ia Individual Test, Schloss of Toronto, ON finished in second place, with a score of 68.623%, riding Inspector Rebus, her 16-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding.

“I am so proud of my boy, Inspector Rebus,” said Schloss. “I rode my test with a lot more confidence than yesterday, and I think my horse felt it too. It’s so nice to be supported by the team, my coach Jessica Rhinelander and the team coach Mary Longden. There has also been a lot of support from the speciality staff Equine Canada brought to the competition. Today makes me proud to be Canadian.”

Also in the Grade Ia Individual Test was Andrews of St. Johns, NL. With her mare Fancianna, a 13-year-old Friesian Andalusian cross, Andrews was third with 68.551%. “Fancianna listened very well today and was much calmer during her test,” said Andrews about her horse. “Our goal tomorrow is to go in the ring with confidence and have another great ride.”

Lynne Poole of Schomberg, ON finished in second place with 63.333%, riding Vasco E, her 12-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, in the Grade IV Individual Test. “I would like to thank the organizers of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival for having a CPEDI competition,” said Poole. “I would also like to thank my sponsor, Bucas.”

Poole added, “It was great to come down to this Florida weather after having such a nasty winter in Canada. My horses were wonderful, and I am very pleased with them.”

“We had a great day today with all riders earning good scores,” noted chef d’équipe Elizabeth Quigg. “This was an excellent start to our season.”

The competition concludes tomorrow, March 16, with musical Freestyle tests for each Grade, which are always a rider and spectator favourite.

The ground jury members for the Adequan Global Dressage Festival 10 CPEDI3* are Kjell Myhre (NOR), Marc Urban (BEL) and Kristi Wysocki (USA). For complete competition results, please visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.

Supporting the team at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival 10 CPEDI3* is Elizabeth Quigg, chef d’équipe; Mary Longden, team coach; Amie O’Shaughnessy, Director of Para-Equestrian; Dr. Jennifer Miller, team veterinarian; and Caroline Archambault, human/horse Registered Massage Therapist.

The Canadian riders’ participation in the competition in Florida was made possible through the Own the Podium program, a national sport technical initiative designed to help Canada’s summer and winter athletes achieve podium success at the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

PHOTOS – Lindsay McCall, United States Para-Equestrian Association

Lauren Barwick and Off to Paris
Lauren Barwick and Ferdonia 2
Ashley Gowanlock and Collegiate Sweet Leilani
Jody Schloss and Inspector Rebus
Robyn Andrews and Fancianna
Lynne Poole and Vasco E
About Para-Equestrian Canada
Para-Equestrian Canada is the Equine Canada committee responsible for developing programs for athletes with a physical disability, and implementing the Para-Dressage high performance program. Para-Equestrian is one of Canada’s most successful international disciplines, achieving an individual gold medal and an individual silver medal at the 2008 Paralympic Games, as well as two individual bronze medals at the 2004 Paralympic Games.

About Para-Equestrian Sport

Para-Equestrian sport provides riders with a physical disability the opportunity to compete against other riders with similar abilities. Riders are given a “Grade” based on their functional ability, and are judged on their riding skill against other athletes of the same Grade. There are five grades of competitions in dressage, with Grade 1a representing the more severely impaired riders, and Grade 4 representing the least severely impaired riders. Many Para-Equestrian athletes also compete alongside able-bodied competitors in Equine Canada competitions. At the grass roots level, Para-Equestrian encompasses a number of different disciplines, while the international stream focuses only on Para-Dressage. For more information, please visitwww.equinecanada.ca/para-equestrian.

USG FlexiVest

March 19, 2014 By: janwest Category: General

KL Select’s mandate is to feature ‘only the best’, and in line with that philosophy, they now offer the Flexi Protective Vest, nicknamed the “bodyguard”, one of the newest developments from USG (United Sportsproducts Germany). Dorothea Carters, Managing Partner at KL Select, remarked that when researching body protectors, “We were appalled that many of the safety vests on the market today are not ASTM approved or tested, and to avoid that costly testing are marketed as ‘vests’ – which is misleading to the American rider”. As trend setters, we here at KL Select recognize that it is only a matter of time before ASTM-approved Body Protectors are mandatory in certain competitions.

1
The Flexi vest offers the latest innovations in safety, comfort and fashion for riders. The vest meets the highest European safety standard – Level 3 EN 13158- 2009 and for US ASTM F1937-04, SEI approved. The ASTM Certification is a special production and only available in the USA. It has been proven and tested that wearing a body protector that is made of flexible parts, instead of one rigid form, gives the rider a wide range of motion and agility. The Flexi vest fits the rider like a second skin and does not hinder the rider or their performance in any way. The “USG Flexi” is ergonomically cut, fits every body shape and is very light. The cover material is stain–resistant and to clean the vest, simply wipe with a damp clean cloth. The hook and loop fasteners at the waist and shoulder allow for a perfect fit every time. A fashionable and functional cover with bow is included. “USG Flexi” is available in black for kids M – XL and adults in sizes S – XL. It is light and comfortable to wear providing much needed protection.”

MSRP is $238 (Adult) & ($219) Children
Contact KL Select info@klselect.com or 860 437 7232 (9 to 5 EST)

Grand Champions Wins Inaugural Great Futures Celebrity Polo Match, Raises Money For Boys & Girls Club

March 17, 2014 By: janwest Category: General

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Nacho Figueras (3) of Grand Champions drives downfield with defender Alejandro Novillo Astrada (3) of Piaget closing in. Photo by Scott Fisher

WELLINGTON, FL-March 10, 2014—-On a perfect, sun-drenched day for polo, Grand Champions captured the inaugural Great Futures Celebrity Polo Match Sunday at Grand Champions Polo Club.

Led by Nacho Figueras, polo’s ambassador and face of Ralph Lauren, Grand Champions (Melissa Ganzi, Marc Ganzi, Nacho Figueras, Nic Roldan) defeated Piaget (Marwan Mohey-el-dien, Jared Zenni, Alejandro Novillo Astrada, Juan Bollini) with a 3-2 victory in the championship final.

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Grand Champions’ Nacho Figueras (3) outraces Piaget defender Jared Zenni (2) downfield in the championship final. Photo by Scott Fisher

 

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Grand Champions player Nacho Figueras (3) changes horses between chukkers with his wife Delfina Blaquier in the background. Photo by Scott Fisher

Figueras scored two goals in the final including the game-winner.

Television spokesman John Walsh, a children’s advocate and activist, of Team Equuleus, was named Most Valuable Player of the round-robin tournament. His Equuleus teammates were Joe DiMenna, 10-goaler Gonzalito Pieres and Mariano Gonzales.

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The game’s Most Valuable Player John Walsh (1) of Equuleus takes the ball downfield. Photo by Scott Fisher

However, the biggest winner of the day was the Neil S. Hirsch Family Boys and Girls Club of Wellington. Proceeds of the fundraiser celebrity match and luncheon benefitted the club.

The club along with twelve other Boys and Girls Clubs in Palm Beach County and more than 1,100 in the United States, provide services including after-school activities and camp opportunities to underprivileged kids, ages 6-18.

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Neil S. Hirsch Family Boys & Girls Club of Wellington kids and counselors enjoying a day of polo at Grand Champions. Photo by Scott Fisher

Palm Beach County’s clubs provide services during non-school hours, as well as summer camp opportunities to nearly 6,000 boys and girls. The clubs emphasize educational, vocational, social, recreational, health, leadership and character-building skills in a positive and safe atmosphere to enable them to make a healthy transition from childhood to young adulthood.

In addition to playing, Grand Champions Polo Club owners Marc and Melissa Ganzi provided the well-groomed field, venue, most of the horses, grooms, equipment, trophies, six pro players and world-renowned polo announcer Tony Coppola, owner of The Tackeria.

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Grand Champions players Melissa Ganzi (1), Marc Ganzi (2), Nacho Figueras (3) and Nic Roldan (4) with Neil Hirsch and Jaene Miranda. Photo by Scott Fisher

“We were pleased to host the celebrity polo match here at Grand Champions,” Marc Ganzi said. “Neil has set a great example for our polo community by giving back to those that need us most here in Wellington-our children.

“We wanted to do everything possible to raise the awareness of this life-changing organization. This celebrity match will help us make an impact.”

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Marc Ganzi (2) of Grand Champions and Alejandro Novillo Astrada (3) of Piaget in a horse race downfield. Photo by Scott Fisher

The Ganzis also sponsored the day’s lavish Great Futures Brunch At Polo luncheon for contributors, guests and players at International Polo Club.

Busloads of children and counselors from the Neil S. Hirsch Family Boys and Girls Clubs got the chance to see a polo game for the first time at Grand Champions. The group sang the National Anthem to start the day’s festivities and got the chance to meet some of the players and horses.

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Grand Champions winning team members Nic Roldan (4), Nacho Figueras (3), trophy presenter Neil Hirsch, Marc Ganzi (2) and Melissa Ganzi (1) and Most Valuable Player John Walsh (1) of Equuleus. Photo by Scott Fisher

“It’s all about the kids,” said co-host Melissa Ganzi, who has competed with Figueras several times and scored a goal in the final.

Said Figueras, “It is always fun when you can play polo and do something for kids. It is a great way to expose kids to horses and polo. I believe very much in programs that can help kids with this.”

No one is more passionate about supporting kids than John Walsh. Combined with his love of polo which has taken him around the world, Walsh jumped at the opportunity to participate in the inaugural event.

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Most Valuable Player John Walsh (1) of Equuleus with Neil Hirsch. 
Photo by Scott Fisher

“It was just a terrific event,” Walsh said. “It’s a great group of people coming together to help the local Boys and Girls Club, the life line for many of these kids from a life of crime or selling drugs. These clubs are changing children’s lives one child at a time. They do God’s work.

“Today was a day where we played and saw some great polo, met some new people and had a gorgeous lunch on a perfect day.”

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Team Equuleus players Joe DiMenna (4), Mariano Gonzales (3), Gonzalito Pieres (2), John Walsh (1) with Neil Hirsch and Jaene Miranda. Photo by Scott Fisher

In addition to Melissa and Marc Ganzi, chairs for the day’s event were Terrie and Ray Mooney and Keith and Penny Williams. The celebrity polo game was free to the public which was treated to PDQ’s food truck fare at halftime. Outback co-founder Tim Gannon, a Fort Lauderdale High School alum and polo player, founded PDQ.

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Trophies and awards surround the Neil S. Hirsch perpetual trophy for the Great Futures Celebrity Polo Match hosted at Grand Champions. Photo by Scott Fisher

For game recaps, news, features and photos of Grand Champions Polo Club-related events, go towww.grandchampionspoloclub.org.

Game video and live webcasts can also be seen at PoloNow Network at http://www.polonow.tv/.

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Piaget players Juan Bollini (4), Alejandro Novillo Astrada (3), Jared Zenni (2) and Marwan Mohey-el-dien (1) with Neil Hirsch and Jaene Miranda. Photo by Scott Fisher

2014 HIGH GOAL SEASON

MARCH 7-23: USPA Piaget Gold Cup: Thursday, Audi vs. Flight Options, 3 p.m.; MARCH 16, Orchard Hill vs. Flight Options, noon; Audi vs. Alegria, 3 p.m.; MARCH 19, Semifinals, 1, 3 p.m.; MARCH 20, Butler Handicap Semifinals, 1, 3 p.m.; MARCH 23, Butler Handicap Final, noon; USPA Piaget Gold Cup Final, 3 p.m.

MARCH 26-APRIL 20: 110th Maserati U.S. Open Polo Championships

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Grand Champions teammates Nacho Figueras (3), Nic Roldan (4) and Melissa Ganzi (1). Photo by Scott Fisher

GRAND CHAMPIONS @ PALM BEACH POLO 2014 TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE (HOTLINE 561-373-0073)

MARCH: Madelon Bourdieu Memorial (5-goal); The Limited Edition 8-Goal Series; The Top Pony 12-Goal Series; March 15-31, Santa Rita Abierto (16 goals); March 23-31, March 23-31, $50,000 National 12-Goal Tournament.

APRIL: Las Acacias (5-goal); USPA Association Cup (8- goal); Museum of Polo & Hall of Fame Challenge Cup (12-goal); John T. Oxley Memorial Trophy (16-goal).

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Grand Champions’ Nic Roldan (4) prepares to hit the ball with Piaget’s Marwan Mohey-el-dien defending. Photo by Scott Fisher

GRAND CHAMPIONS POLO CLUB SCHEDULE (561-644-5050)

MARCH 17: Buzz Welker Memorial Tournament

APRIL 4-5: Fifth annual Gay Polo League International Tournament

APRIL 8-12: Women’s Championship Tournament

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Nic Roldan (4) of Grand Champions chases down the ball with Piaget’s Juan Bollini (4) defending. Photo by Scott Fisher

GRAND CHAMPIONS POLO CLUB

WHERE: 13444 Southfields Road, on the corner of South Shore Boulevard and Lake Worth Road, Wellington, 33414.

INFORMATION: There are great field side views for tournament action at the home base of pro teams Audi and Flight Options. Everyone is welcome to watch high, medium and low goal polo in a relaxed atmosphere during the winter, spring and fall tournament season and other special events including International Cup in November, Buzz Welker Memorial Junior Tournament in March, ProKidz Tournaments in the spring and fall, Women’s Championship Tournament and Gay Polo League International Tournament, both in April.

GRAND CHAMPIONS POLO CLUB

WHERE: 13444 Southfields Road, on the corner of South Shore Boulevard and Lake Worth Road, Wellington, 33414.

INFORMATION: There are great field side views for tournament action at the home base of pro teams Audi and Flight Options. Everyone is welcome to watch high, medium and low goal polo in a relaxed atmosphere during the winter, spring and fall tournament season and other special events including International Cup in November, Buzz Welker Memorial Junior Tournament in March, ProKidz Tournaments in the spring and fall, Women’s Championship Tournament and Gay Polo League International Tournament, both in April.

Sidelines TV Filming Live at India Night This Thursday!

March 12, 2014 By: janwest Category: General

 

Wellington, FL – March 11, 2014 – Guests at this Thursday’s India Night could get their 15

minutes of fame thanks to Sidelines TV.

The online television channel will be filming a segment at the inaugural event to be

held Thursday, March 13, 2014 at the International

Polo Club Palm Beach (IPC).

 

India Night kicks off with an open bar, Indian cuisine, live music and Bollywood dancers at 7 p.m.
at the 7th Chukker Restaurant and Veranda at IPC.All proceeds from the night go to benefit the Salvation Tree School, a school that has

already had a phenomenal, positive impact on the lives of children in India.

The school is supported by the Salvation Tree Foundation, a recognized non-profit

founded by Wellington, FL residents Timmy and Laurie Sharma and funded through

a percentage of the sales of popular equestrian brands TuffRider, Equine Couture and Henri De Rivel. Through the foundation

and the Salvation Tree School, the three brands are able to provide the children of their employees in India with an entirely

free education, including books, supplies, mid-day meals, transportation and uniforms unlike anything they could otherwise receive.

 

The education that the children receive through the Salvation Tree School is unlike anything that would otherwise be possible. Now the importance of that education is taking center stage at India Night in Wellington, FL – and around the world, thanks to Sidelines TV.

Laurie and Timmy Sharma at the Salvation Tree School in India.

When the idea of India Night was announced, the meaning and charity behind the event caught the attention of Sidelines TV producer Robert Jordan.

 

“It is really nice to be able to communicate with the Sidelines audience, many of whom will never come close to the equestrian wonder that is Wellington, that horse lovers here, like everywhere, are a very generous and caring lot,” Jordan commented.

 

Joining Jordan in the filming and production of India Night coverage is Manohardeep Singh Josan. Singh Josan was born and raised in the Punjab region of India, and he has since gone on to earn his Ph.D. from the University of Florida. In addition to working as a soil and water scientist, Singh Josan is actively working to dispel negative stereotypes about India and its culture.

Robert Jordan conducting an interview for Sidelines TV. The TV channel provides behind-the-scenes equestrian interviews and coverage.

“We hope to produce a piece in the Hindi language to reach native speakers worldwide and bring awareness to what a wonderful thing the Sharmas are doing,” Jordan said.

 

Show your support of the Salvation Tree School and plan to ‘party with a purpose’ by purchasing your tickets online at www.indianight.orgRemaining ticket space is extremely limited, so purchase today!

 

Ticket price includes an open bar, gourmet cuisine, an Indian bazaar, Bollywood dancers, authentic Indian musicians, a Bollywood DJ and dancing.

 

Find out more about the Salvation Tree Foundation by visiting www.SalvationTree.org. For additional information on Sidelines TV visit www.sidelinesnews.com.

 

 

India Night 2014 Fast Facts:

 

What: A party with a purpose! Take a journey into the sights, sounds and tastes of India, all in support of the Salvation Tree School. The evening will include Indian cuisine, Bollywood dancers, and Indian bazaar and authentic Indian Musicians.

 

When: Thursday, March 13, 2014 at 7 p.m.

 

Where: The 7th Chukker Restaurant and Veranda at the International Polo Club Palm Beach

 

Why: To aid the Salvation Tree Foundation in funding expansions to the Salvation Tree School infrastructure necessary to meet the needs of the students as the Salvation Tree School continues to grow! The school provides impoverished children in India with an entirely free education, including books, supplies, mid-day meals, transportation and uniforms unlike anything they could otherwise receive.

 

Tickets: Purchase tickets or find out more information one of three ways:

–       Online at www.IndiaNight.org

–       By email at info@indianight.org

–       By calling (561)254-0406

Crypto Aero Wholefood Horse Feed Excited to be the Feed Sponsor for Leah Winston’s colt Quaterstern RF Queue and Shawn Casady’s mare Coco Chanel

March 11, 2014 By: janwest Category: General

Shawn Casady and Coco Chanel

Shawn Casady and Coco Chanel

Coco Chanel (Lord Z x Karandasj) is a 2007 mare that has just arrived in the U.S. this January. Crypto Aero will be able to support this team from the very beginning of their exciting new partnership. Shawn Casady started taking riding lessons at the age of seven. Growing up as the son of an airline pilot, he spend a lot of time around planes, but decided early on that horses would be his career. Currently based a rider for Ashland Farms with Ken and Emily Smith, Casady has consistently put in top finishes in both the hunter and jumper divisions.
“ I am very excited about my partnership with Crypto Aero and the quality of nutrition that Coco Chanel will be receiving. I heard some wonderful things about this feed and can’t wait to see the positive differences it will make in her.”

QuaterStern is the # 1 Oldenburg colt for 2013. He scored 9 on all gaits and 9 on overall impression. 8.5 on conformation with a total ending score of 8.8.
“The inspector said he had never seen a foal that can move through his body like QuaterStern can. I feel like the luckiest person alive to be his owner, and expect together we will take on the world.” QuaterStern’s sire is Quaterback and the dam is Sandro Fe out of Sandro Hit. His breeder is Debra McMillan of Ridge Field Farm, Maine.
Leah Winston is a Dressage rider and trainer, based in Palm City, FL. Born and raised in England, she grew up on her mother’s equestrian facility and the British Pony Club gave her the foundation of who she has become today.
“I am so excited about the new partnership with Anna and her feed Crypto Aero and I believe the compilation of research and ingredients in this feed is the future of our equine friends.”

2014 Live Oak International Driving and CSI2*W Showjumping Continues to Raise the Bar

March 08, 2014 By: janwest Category: General

Ocala, FL (March 7, 2014) – Never has an international-level equestrian competition in the Sunshine State offered so much for so many. The Live Oak International CAI/CSI-W 2*, March 19-23, at Live Oak Plantation, will provide spectators the chance to watch some of the sport’s most celebrated equestrian athletes. Top athletes entered to compete include 2012 British Olympic Team Gold Medalist Ben Maher, 2012 Olympic Bronze Medalist Cian O’Connor, Olympian McLain Ward, and 10-time National Four-in-Hand Champion Chester Weber. And if all that is not enough horse power, the world-famous Budweiser Clydesdales will be on display as well.

Chester Weber and his team during the 2013 Live Oak International. (Photo courtesy of PicsofYou.com)

Chester Weber and his team during the 2013 Live Oak International. (Photo courtesy of PicsofYou.com)

Live Oak International was selected by United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) to host Ocala’s only Showjumping World Cup qualifier of the year. New in 2014, Live Oak International and sponsor Brook Ledge Horse Transportation are promising to deliver first class treatment for competitors; equine athletes with busy schedules don’t have to miss a stride or class as Live Oak International and Brook Ledge will be providing complementary transportion for the horses between Ocala, Wellington and Miami throughout the event.

The Monday following Live Oak International, Ocala horse country will also host a $1 Million Grand Prix at HITS Post Time Farm. Ensuring that riders can compete in both competitions was paramont to the planning committee at Live Oak International. That consideration for competitors was certainly among the factors that prompted the North American Riders Group (NARG) to name Live Oak International as one of its Top Four specialty events of 2013.

The producers and hosts of Live Oak International, 10-time US National Four-in-Hand Driving Champion and USEF Board Member, Chester Weber, and his sister, Juliet W. Reid, who also serves as the Chairman of the Board for the Washington International Horse Show, are committed to the growth of top international horse sport in Ocala.  “We want to encourage participation and make it as easy as possible for Florida’s horse industry to benefit from the world class horses and riders that are so much a part of our community and way of life,” Weber, explained.

“Being selected as Ocala’s only World Cup qualifier is also an enormous honor,” Reid added. Showjumping was added to the event’s traditional combined driving program in 2012, and last March Live Oak International hosted a $50,000 CSI2* Grand Prix, won by Todd Minikus and Quality Girl.

Todd Minkus and Quality Girl on their way to the win in the $50,000 CSI2* Grand Prix during the 2013 Live Oak International. (Photo courtesy of Mark Astrom)

Todd Minkus and Quality Girl on their way to the win in the $50,000 CSI2* Grand Prix during the 2013 Live Oak International. (Photo courtesy of Mark Astrom)

With over 40 entries representing 12 countries, this year’s Live Oak International CSI-W 2* is also a qualifying event for the American Invitational on April 5, being held for the first time in Miami. Two-time Olympic show jumping course designer Leopoldo Palacios will again design the course for Live Oak International’s John Deere grand prix grass field.  In addition to the CSI-W 2*, the Live Oak International will also host a number of other jumping classes, including the $5,000 1.30m Joan Pletcher Realtor Power & Speed class, the $10,000 Waldron Wealth Management Welcome Stake, and the $34,000 CSI 2* Hollow Creek Winning Round.

Should the grass rumble beneath your feet on Thursday, March 20th or Saturday March 22nd, it’s not a Florida thunderstorm but the thunder of America’s favorite driving team: the Budweiser Clysdesdales, who will make two special appearances during Live Oak International. Spectators can get up close and personal with their favorite Superbowl commericial TV stars!

True to its roots, Live Oak International was the first to bring world-class show jumping together with world-class combined driving at one venue at one time and driving fans can still count on the most precise, most beautifully turned-out, and most bold pony and horse teams competing here.  Classes include the Yellowframe Farm Driven Dressage and Driving Obstacles, and competitors will be vying for position on the Florida Triple Crown Driving rankings.

Among the event’s leading whips last year was Florida horsewoman Misdee Wrigley-Miller, who won her first USEF National Pairs Championship title at Live Oak International.  Now, the Lakewood Ranch driver will return to Ocala to challenge 10-time National Champion Chester Weber in in the Four-in-Hand division.

Elegant marathon tailgating, trend-setting boutiques at the Vendor Village, a Kids Zone featuring a bounce house, and the Charles Owen Competitors Club assure that every Live Oak International guest – outside and inside the competition arena – finds an event and experience sure to please.

“As the Live Oak International is a family-owned and family-managed tournament on our own property, we have the ability to tailor our event to meet the needs of our competitors, spectators and sponsors. Chester and I both play several roles within the equestrian community, and we try to use our experiences in the sport to ensure that every detail is scrutinized to make the Live Oak International an event Ocala and the horse world can be proud of,” added Reid.  That’s Florida hospitality – Live Oak International style.

Admission is $10 per person, $5 for children under 12, with proceeds benefiting the Marion County Therapeutic Riding Association. For more information on the Live Oak International, including VIP Hospitality seating and sponsorship opportunities, please visit www.liveoakinternational.com.  For tailgating spaces call 352-207-3615.

 

USHJA Zone 4 and Gulf Coast Winter Classics Liverpool Clinic Makes a Splash With Devin Ryan

March 07, 2014 By: janwest Category: General

Gulfport, MS – March 6, 2014 – After riding with clinician Devin Ryan on Tuesday, February 25, 2014, the participants in the USHJA Zone 4 and Gulf Coast Winter Classics clinic may well be hoping a liverpool fence makes an appearance on their next course.  The junior, amateur and professional riders alike worked with Ryan on site at the Gulf Coast Winter Classics to master a straightforward approach to introducing and tackling the liverpool.

 

Throughout the free clinic, made possible by USHJA Zone 4 and the Gulf Coast Winter Classics, Ryan focused on the fundamentals. Ryan, of Long Valley, NJ, explained to riders and auditors that as long as the horse is in front of your leg and well schooled to your aid, any jump including a liverpool, should pose no issue. With that in mind, Ryan first worked riders on the flat to help maximize each horse’s responsiveness to its rider’s aids.

 

Ryan then worked riders through gymnastic exercises, having each participant jump through the gymnastic and halt in a straight line well before the liverpool. After repeating this exercise several times, each of the horses were anticipating the halt and landing softly and slowly.

Devin Ryan clearing a liverpool aboard Chantilly. Photo by MH Hamm.

Ryan then had the riders jump the same gymnastic, but this time they continued at a canter to the liverpool. Since each of the horses would anticipate going to the halt, this enabled riders to add a lot of leg down the six stride line to really encourage the horses to jump well over the liverpool. With the horses all well schooled to their riders aids, the addition of the liverpool was a non-issue.

 

The final component of Ryan’s approach to the liverpool focused on course work teaching riders to prepare themselves for any jump on course.  Ryan encouraged riders to know how their lines ride and to establish the proper pace for each line well before the turn to face the jump.

 

“Establish your pace early and avoid making big changes in front of the jump.  This allows the horse to focus on jumping the jump,” Ryan explained to the riders and auditors.

 

Throughout the course work phase of the clinic, Ryan reminded all the riders to remember to focus on the basics including keeping their horse in front of their leg and listening.

 

Ryan’s valuable instruction at no cost to riders would not have been possible without the generous support of USHJA Zone 4. The clinics put on by USHJA Zone 4 provide riders and auditors with the opportunity to learn from the best riders and trainers in the country. Visit the USHJA Zone 4 homepagehere.

 

Click here to learn more about the Mississippi Gulf Coast Winter Classic. Come for the show and stay for the fun!

 

Stay up to date:  Like the Gulf Coast Winter Classics on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!

 

Gulf Coast Winter Classics  

Fast Facts:

 

What:

Gulf Coast Winter Classics USEF AA-Rated/Jumper Levels Four and Five

Click here for the prize list.

 

Where:

Harrison County Fairgrounds and Equestrian Center
15321 County Farm Rd.
Gulfport, MS 39503

 

When:

February 5 – March 16, 2014

 

Highlights Include: 
Weekly USHJA National Hunter Derby & Classics, Week 5 International Hunter Derby
Week 1  $  5,000 Welcome – $25,000 Grand Prix
Week 2  $25,000 Welcome – $35,000 Grand Prix
Week 3  $25,000 Welcome – $50,000 Grand Prix
Week 4  $25,000 Welcome – $50,000 Grand Prix
Week 5  $25,000 Welcome – $77,000 Grand Prix, $15,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby
Week 6  $  5,000 Welcome – $25,000 Grand Prix, Plus Rodeo.

 

Contacts

President                  Bob Bell                      bob@classiccompany.com                  843.768.5503

Coordinator               Janet McCarroll            janet@gulfcoastclassiccompany.com   228.669.2687

Office Manager         Jonathan Rabon           jonathan@classiccompany.com           843.729.2818

Advertising               Drew Coster                 drew@classiccompany.com                843.754.2266

Stabling                   Tissy Principe              info@gulfcoastclassiccompany.com    843.768.5503

Sponsorship             Lisa Engel                  lisa@classiccompany.com                  908.310.6248

 

Book Your Lodging for Gulf Coast Winter Classics 

Equestrian Travel               (800) GOGALLUP (855-464-2556)

 

Sponsors

Horse Shows Online

http://horseshowsonline.com/

 

Budweiser

http://www.budweiser.com/

 

Nutrena

http://www.nutrenaworld.com/

 

Dominos

http://www.dominos.com/

 

Bohicket Marina

http://bohicket.com/

 

Essex Classics

http://www.essexclassics.com/

 

Johnson Horse Transportation

http://www.johnsonhorsetransportation.com/

 

EMO

http://www.rideemo.com/

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