Saturday, January 31, 2009

Dressage Up Close.

What a view! We could see the Masters warming up through our Coach window. In less than 30 seconds we were a few feet away from watching these top riders warm up their horses. Another minute later we were ringside watching them compete. Equestrian Sport is doing an amazing job producing the show right along their hunter/jumper series.

We watched a huge grand prix jumper class on Thursday night from the new Tiki Hut. It's a two-story party place and is creating a real entertainment venture for horse shows. WEF is the place to be for entertainment. If all of the horse shows were like this, we would have more fans than we knew what to do with at our events.

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Thursday, January 29, 2009

The view from the Equine Motorcoach is fabulous. We're here at the Winter Equestrian Festival all season long - thanks to Mark Bellissimo and his team. This week we are just in awe of the top international dressage competitors who have traveled here for the World Dressage Masters. Many of them have stopped by to the see the Coach and it has been a thrill to meet these superstars of the dressage world. WEF feels like home and there's no place like home.

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Saturday, January 24, 2009

Come See Us in Wellington for the World Dressage Masters.

Thursday, Jan. 29 - Saturday, Jan. 31
$135,000 Prizemoney
Spectacular Palm Beach
International Equestrian Center
Under Lights Friday Night
Anky van Grunsven Clinic
Under Lights Saturday Night
Grand Prix Musical Freestyle

* Anky Van Grunsven NED * * Steffen Peters USA * * Ashley Holzer CAN* * Edward Gal NED * * Hans-Peter Mindehoud NED *
* Anne van Holst DEN * * Stefan van Ingelgem BEL * * Lars Petersen DEN * * Michael Barisone USA * * Tosca Visser NED *
* Jan Ebeling USA * * Mikala Gundersen DEN * * Jacqueline Brooks CAN * * Jane Hannigan USA * * Joe Sandven USA *
* Tara Stegen USA * * Marco Bernal COL * * Arlene Page USA *

Friday and Saturday will present two days of unprecedented dressage festivities in the United States with the entire International Arena including the International Club catered by Equestrian Club by Tavern on the Green, VIP boxes and general admission seating available for reservations.

On Friday, van Grunsven will host a clinic with a group of selected riders in the International Arena under lights, an environment that is similar to the 2008 Olympic equestrian venue in which van Grunsven won her third straight Olympic individual gold medal.

The riders in the clinic include young riders, small tour competitors and Grand Prix combinations.

Saturday will be the WDM highlight with the * €30,000 ($40,000) Grand Prix Special and, €60,000 ($80,000) Grand Prix Freestyle.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Equine Motorcoach at Wellington

Six US Dressage Riders take World to Task at Inaugural Exquis World Dressage Masters in Wellington, FL
Release: January 09 2009
By Joanie Morris

Lexington, KY – Six of the most promising US dressage riders will take on some of the world’s best when the Exquis World Dressage Masters heads to the Palm Beach International Equestrian Club January 28-31. This brand new series will travel from Wellington, FL to Salzburg, Austria and Munchen, Germany in May, then to Hickstead, UK in June. The series of competitions is bringing riders from across the globe together for a brand new initiative. Twenty starters will compete in the first Grand Prix and then twelve of those horses will go on to compete in the Grand Prix Special. The remaining eight horses will move on to compete in the Grand Prix Freestyle under lights on Saturday evening in the newly renovated International Arena.

Led by Steffen Peters, who with Aikiko Yamazaki’s Ravel was undefeated in the 2008 build up to the Olympic Games (where they were fourth individually), the US squad is a mixture of seasoned veterans and rising stars. Peters and Ravel will travel from San Diego, CA to take on some of the world’s best again. They swept the USEF Selection Trials for Dressage in June.

One of the three riders who finished ahead of Peters in Hong Kong, has become a dressage legend. Dutch rider Anky van Grunsven, who won her third Individual Gold at the 2008 Olympic Games, will be performing for the dressage fans on US soil for the first time since the 2007 World Cup Final in Las Vegas. She will ride Painted Black in Wellington.

Another US Olympian will be having a crack at a share of more than $144,000 in total prize money. Michael Barisone (from Califon, NJ), who was an essential part of the US Olympic squad as the travelling reserve with Jane Suwalsky’s Neruda, will get his time in the ring in Florida.

Jan Ebeling and Rafalca are also making the cross country trek to Florida from their Moorpark, CA base. Ebeling, another veteran rider, was most recently third at the Del Mar CDI-W in November with the 12-year-old mare owned by his wife Amy and Anne Romney.

Jane Hannigan last represented the US at the World Cup Final last year in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands with her own Maksymillian. Hannigan, from Harvard, MA, and ‘Maks’ were then fourth in the Freestyle at Dressage at Devon in September.

The final two US riders are both representing the US for the very first time at the Grand Prix level. Joe Sandven (on Rachmaninoff) and Tara Stegen (with New Tango) are both rising stars in the US dressage program. Sandven and Rachmaninoff had their most recent success at the MSEDA Dressage at the Kentucky Horse Park where they won two Grand Prix events. Stegen and New tango are based in Wellington, FL year round and have had consistent success in the Sunshine State.

Tickets are still available for this battle of the nations, don’t miss a chance to see some of the world’s best go head-to-head. For tickets and more information please see: