By US Equestrian Communications Department
Three athlete-and-horse combinations represented The Dutta Corp. U.S. Dressage Team this weekend in the FEI Dressage Nations CupTM France CDIO5*, held at Les Internationaux de Dressage in Compiègne. Additionally, two combinations competed in the Young Rider division ahead of their upcoming CDIO-Y in Hagen next month. This outing was a development opportunity for the athletes and horses early in the European summer season.
FEI Dressage Nations Cup France CDIO5*
Ben Ebeling (Moorpark, Calif.) and Vantage Equestrian Group II LLC’s 2008 Danish Warmblood mare, Indeed, turned in a clean Grand Prix test on Saturday for a 67.761%. The pair returned for Sunday’s Grand Prix Freestyle and worked through some early bobbles to complete an entertaining test to a pop music soundtrack including songs by Gwen Stefani and Rihanna, earning a score of 70.245%.
Susan Dutta (Wellington, Fla.) and her longtime partner, Don Design DC, put in a solid effort in Saturday’s Grand Prix, scoring a 66.652%. Dutta and the 2010 Hanoverian gelding that she co-owns with her husband, J. Tim Dutta, returned for Sunday’s Grand Prix Special where they earned a 65.936%.
Jan Ebeling (Moorpark, Calif.) and Ann Romney’s 2010 Hanoverian mare, Bellena, started with a solid result in their European debut as a combination, earning a 69.456% in Saturday’s Grand Prix. They were unfortunately eliminated from Sunday’s Grand Prix Special during the tack check, taking the team out of contention for the Nations Cup.
Outside of the Nations Cup competition, Ben Ebeling earned his first European Grand Prix win, riding Ann Romney’s 2010 Oldenburg gelding, Status Royal OLD, to a 71.410% and first place in the CDIU25 Grand Prix 16-25 on Friday. The pair also finished in second place in the CDIU25 – Freestyle Grand Prix Test with a 74.040%.
CDIY – Young Riders
In her European debut, Mackenzie Peer (Leawood, Kan.) rode her own 2005 Dutch Warmblood gelding, Ansgar, to a 69.951% and eighth-place finish in the Prix St. Georges Young Riders Team Test. The pair returned for the Young Riders Individual Test where they scored an even 70.000% and a sixth-place finish. Peer completed her weekend with a 69.530% in the Young Riders Freestyle Test.
Also competing in her first European event, Erin Nichols (Yorba Linda, Calif.) rode Handsome Rob AR, a 2012 Dutch Warmblood gelding owned by Diane Nichols, to a 66.911% in the PSG Young Riders Team Test and a 65.343% in the Individual Test. The pair completed their Freestyle Test with a 67.700%.
Peer and Nichols, along with Christian Simonson, will compete in the Youth Nations Cup at the Hagen Future Champions CDIOY in Hagen, Germany, June 14-19. The European Young Rider Tour is generously supported by Discover Dressage.
“While the results of our Nation Cup team were of course disappointing, I’m proud of our whole U.S. contingent at Compiégne,” said USEF Youth Coach George Williams, who served as Chef d’Equipe for both teams. “Ben’s win on Status Royal in the U25 Grand Prix was definitely a highlight. I was also very proud of our young riders and their performances, especially Mackenzie’s sixth-place finish in the Individual Test. Overall, it was a super introduction to European competitions for them. We are looking forward to the Young Riders Nations Cup in Hagen.”