Scott Stewart and Dedication couldn’t have had a much better start to the Wellington edition of the USHJA International Hunter Derby series. Together the pair jumped to the top of the classic round in the $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby during Week 12 of the FTI Winter Equestrian Festival, heading into tomorrow’s handy round with a 4-point buffer over two-time class winners Jennifer Alfano and Jersey Boy.
The classic round of the $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby kicks off at 2 p.m. this afternoon, with 56 horses to jump. The top horses will advance to tomorrow's handy round, taking place at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center's grass field next to the new dressage facility.
By the time Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum went into the jump-off for the WEF Challenge Cup 12 aboard Cantano, she was already guaranteed the top check.
She had laid down a speedy clear round aboard longtime partner Checkmate, but that didn’t stop her from going for broke aboard her newer mount, Cantano. That bold move paid off, with Cantano outrunning his veteran barnmate to take blue at the final class in the series at the FTI Winter Equestrian Festival.
Steffen Peters and Ravel led the Olympic Grand Prix Special field today at the Del Mar CDI-W at the Rancho Valencia Dressage Affaire, winning the class with an 80.28 percent. Guenter Seidel improved on yesterday’s performance aboard his brand new partner Fandango for second (70.42%), just ahead of Kathleen Raine and Breanna (70.40%).
It’s pretty hard to follow in the footsteps of a horse like Ravel, but today Legolas 92 proved, again, that he’s up for the challenge. Partnered with Steffen Peters, Legolas earned a 78.22 percent in his first ever Grand Prix freestyle to win the class.
Steffen Peters’ newest grand prix horse, Legolas 92, grabbed the spotlight as soon as he arrived on the dressage scene, and he hasn’t let it go yet. That gelding logged his latest win at the Del Mar CDI-W at the Rancho Valencia Dressage Affaire, where he topped the Grand Prix for the freestyle on a mark of 75.80 percent. Peters won the class over Jan Ebling and Rafalca, who earned a 71.46 percent.
Peters felt especially proud of Legolas 92 for his clean performance in the electric atmosphere at Del Mar.
On Feb. 26, adult amateur jumper rider Don Little suffered a serious fall at the FTI Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Fla. He was flown to Delray Medical Center where he remains.
Little was competing in the $10,000 Masters Jumper Classic aboard Superiur in the International Ring when the fall occurred. Palm Beach County ambulance immediately transported Little to the Stadium, where a Trauma Hawk helicopter airlifted Little to the Delray Medical Center.
Little had already competed successfully aboard another mount, Mr. Nightime, earlier in the class.
Madison Scott grew up like many young riders, taking weekly lessons while dreaming of a horse of her own. But Scott's passion ran deeper than a teenage infatuation, and when she became the foremost expert on her favorite superstar equine, her dreams started coming true.
It all started when Scott was 10 and didn't know a starting gate from a stirrup iron. In 2004, Smarty Jones had enthralled racing fans and the general public alike with his comeback story of recovering from a fractured skull to become the first undefeated Kentucky Derby winner since Seattle Slew in 1977.