Who Says Dressage is Boring?

What a lovely horse! What focus! Any one of those “distractions” would have sent Freedom into the next hemisphere.

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Dressage at Rolex

After two days of dressage, Clark Montgomery on Loughan is firmly in the lead with an impressive 33.6%.

Michel Jung and FischerRocana sits in second place with 37.1%.

Kim Severson and Cooley Cross Border are in third place with 41.0%.

Perhaps stealing the show was the retirement ride by Allison Springer and Arthur.

Sprenger chose to retire the 18 year old Irish Sport Horse gelding at what would have been his eighth start at Rolex. Arthur was recently diagnosed with aortic regurgitation — leakage from the aortic valve, which is a common degenerative problem in older horses.

“Arthur is my one of my oldest friends. He and I have traveled the

world together, and we have had many moments of triumph and some moments of heartbreak, but in every moment, he has been my partner and I have always been incredibly proud to get to ride him,” Allison said.

 

Charlotte Dujardin & Valegro Take The Lead In Rio

Charlotte Dujardin has taken the lead in the dressage in Rio by turning in a commanding 85.07% on Valegro. Not a surprise, really as they are the reigning world champion, but they really lived up to their billing. If I could ride a horse that well — and ride a horse that talented — I could forego jumping forever!

Thanks to someone posting video from a BBC channel, I was actually able to watch the dressage performances. They are posted on Facebook so I’m hoping the embedding works for all of you.

 

Steffan Peters is currently the highest placing American rider, competing on Legolas.

 
Here’s a nice interview with Charlotte (and Valegro).

William Fox-Pitt leads after Dressage in Rio

William Fox-Pitt on Chilli Morning
William Fox-Pitt GBR riding Chilli Morning, during the dressage phase of the Eventing Competition of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Fox-Pitt currently is in first place.

William Fox-Pitt and Chilli Morning held onto their leadership position with a score of 37.0. What a come back for William, who had a terrible fall last year. To see him back in the saddle and in such great form is inspiring.

He tells his story best in these two interviews below. Until listening to him, I’d had no idea how much he’s had to overcome in his recovery.

Horses have always been part of my life and I love being around them. During my recovery they gave me something to go for. The horses really got me back to being fit and back on the job.

In the beginning I couldn’t see very well at all and then for several months I had blurred vision. It did effect my riding.

‘The jumping was tricky when you could see one fence that became four and I couldn’t really tell which one I was jumping until the last minute. It’s tough.

Uthopia to stay with Carl Hester

Carl Hester ended weeks of speculation today when he announced that Uthopia would stay in his barn. Uthopia was sold at auction for £165,000 after the bankruptcy of his owners Sasha Stewart and her father Derek Harrison.  Although Hester had attempted to raise fund for a syndicate, he was outbid by an anonymous Irish buyer.

Now it’s been revealed that one of Carl Hester and UthopiaHester’s friends and sponsors has purchased the stallion from the Irish buyer who bought the horse at Wilsons Auctions, meaning that “Uti” will stay in Hester’s yard.

So nice to hear there is a happy ending to this story.