Paragon and Heather Blitz towered over their competition, literally, in the CDI Prix St. Georges at the Palm Beach Dressage Derby. The 18-hand gelding easily won in the 43-horse field, scoring an impressive 76.05 percent to beat second-placed Shawna Harding and Rigo by almost 5 percent.
Olympic Grand Prix horse FBW Kennedy died during the night on Feb. 3. The retired Baden-Württemberg gelding (Tiro—Katy, Karata) was 21.
Nicknamed “Turbo” for his enthusiasm and forward temperament, FBW Kennedy became well known in the United States after Jane Forbes Clark bought him for Robert Dover in 2003. The pair went on to sweep the Olympic selection trials in 2004 and earned top 10 placings in all three Grand Prix tests at the Athens Olympic Games—the best finish ever for six-time Olympian Dover.
Tom McCutcheon and Gunners Special Nite were the only U.S. horse-and-rider pair to come away with team and individual gold medals at the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games. The membership of the U.S. Equestrian Federation rewarded them for their achievements by naming McCutcheon Equestrian of the Year and Gunners Special Nite Farnam/Platform Horse of the Year at the 2011 USEF Annual Meeting.
McCutcheon was the first reiner to win USEF Equestrian of the Year, and he has been on every WEG reining team since the sport was added in 2002.
Who will be the next U.S. Eventing Technical Advisor and Chef d’Equipe? David O’Connor, the current U.S. Equestrian Federation President and Canadian Eventing International Technical Advisor, is turning in his application today, as first reported on Eventing Nation. He joins Phillip Dutton and Bobby Costello, who also announced their plan to submit a joint application by the Jan. 31 deadline.
The U.S. Equestrian Federation will broadcast the fifth annual George H. Morris Horsemastership Training Session on the USEF Network. The training session will take place Jan. 4-8 at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, Fla. This exclusive opportunity is offered to 12 of the nation's best rising stars, and they will spend five days learning from the U.S. Show Jumping Chef d'Equipe George Morris and several other legends of the sport.
Top eventing supporter Rebecca Broussard died Dec. 24 after a battle with cancer. Friends and family gathered on Christmas to honor her life, while public celebrations of her legacy will be planned at equestrian competitions this summer.
Broussard was the founder of The Event at Rebecca Farm, an event that routinely hosted the best event riders in the western United States and Canada.
HRH Princess Haya Al Hussein of Jordan won the election for President of the Fédération Equestre Internationale at the FEI’s General Assembly in Taipei in a landslide victory in the first round of voting on Nov. 5. Princess Haya, who was seeking a second and final four-year term as president, won with 90 votes of a total 124 valid ballots.
The other contenders for the position were Sven Holmberg of Sweden, the first vice president of the FEI, who received 23 votes, and former vice president of the Netherlands Equestrian Federation, Henk Rottinghuis, who received 11 votes.
Hannah Burnett liked the feeling of winning so much last year at the Dansko Fair Hill International in the two-star with St. Barths that she decided to come back and do it again.
This time the 24-year-old from The Plains, Va., earned the CCI*** title and the U.S. Equestrian Federation national championship, besting names like Phillip Dutton, who placed second with Fernhill Eagle (57.0), and Kristin Schmolze, who finished third on Cavaldi (60.2).