Lots Happening in Welly World...
The World Dressage Masters just wrapped up, at the same time as the season's fourth CDI. One more to go--the inaugural International Horse Sports Champions Cup later this month. Steffen Peters, champion of the Masters, continues his monthly clinic series here, in which Mica has been fortunate to ride with a number of her horses, thanks to the generous sponsorship of Renee Isler.
The Challenge of the Americas, benefiting the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, is a highlight of the Charity circuit, and last weekend's event was won by the Team Purina USA, featuring riders Betsy Steiner, George Williams, Pam Goodrich, John Zopatti, Bill Warren and Jim Koford. The other favorite event of the Wellington Dressage community is Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center, and last month's event, spearheaded by Tuny Page, brought much-needed funding for the center which is now serving injured Olympian Courtney King-Dye in her quest to fully recover from her brain injury of last year. Every weekend in Wellington during the months of January through March brings an opportunity to support a worthwhile cause, and the equestrian community here steps up to the plate--from a $1,000,000 Charity Challenge at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center, to the Equestrian Aid Foundation Auction at the Palm Beach Derby, and many more.
Last week the management of the Winter Equestrian Festival announced plans for the development of its most valuable piece of property next to the main PBIEC showgrounds--the former Polo Stadium of the Palm Beach Polo Club, at the corner of Pierson and South Shore. The plans include the construction of a new events arena and rings, with the primary purpose to be the home to a new series of International Dressage shows beginning in 2011. Robert Dover, who has served as coach for Team Canada all season, will be the "Front Man" for the promotion of this new series of CDIs, which will provide prize winnings similar to those of the Jumper circuit for the first time in the United States. Read more about it on Robert's doversworld.com site, or listen to his radio program live on Tuesday nights at 6pm.
HGF riders Mica Mabragana, Rachel Chowanec and Molly Reynolds continue to train and prepare for the final few shows of the season. Mica has completed two successful CDIs with Idilio, obtaining qualifying scores at both shows for representation at the Pan Am Games for Argentina. Rachel Chowanec and Embrujado continue to improve their scores in the FEI Juniors tests, proving at the Palm Beach Derby that they are in a league of their own. Rachel will be one of four riders competing in the Dressage Under the Stars on Wednesday evening with HGF's Camaron at the Player's Club. This week's competition is an "Iberian Challenge" and will feature two PREs and two Lusitanos doing "fun and cultural" freestyles.
On March 22, HGF will host a reception for 80 friends of D4K (Dressage4Kids), with Lendon Gray and her many successful students of our sport, including CKD, Liz Austin, Isabelle Leibler, Jocelyn Wiese, Meagan Davis, Mica Mabragana, and now Chelsea, Molly, and Rachel!
More news and scores to come...