Mill Spring, N.C. – April 23, 2016 – Ashley Holzer (CAN) and Dressed In Black notched their second win of the weekend at the Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) CDI3*, taking home top honors in the Grand Prix Freestyle with a score of 71.502 percent. Jim Koford (USA) and Don Principe finished in second place with a 66.1 percent, while Nora Batchelder (USA) and Bahai earned a 66.05 percent for third place.
Holzer and Dressed In Black performed with poise and confidence in the George H. Morris Arena.
“I would say that I have not ridden this freestyle routine many times, and I was just really trying to navigate my way through, and he doesn’t know the pattern that well yet,” Holzer said. “He hasn’t ever been out into anything like this, and I was just trying to keep him calm and steady through it.”
Dressed In Black has come into his own over the course of the past few months. Holzer is pleased not only with his progression in technique and understanding, but also with his willingness in the ring. The impressive 11-year-old Westphalian stallion by Dresemann, owned by Holzer and Dr. Diane Fellows, has made a triumphant return to competition, and Holzer will look to continue their progress over the next few months.
“There were some mistakes in the twos that were not his fault,” Holzer said. “What’s amazing to me though is that he goes into that ring, which has all of that feeling and electricity, and he really tries hard. He’s doing the very best he can for where he is right now in his fitness level. I’m just very proud of him.”
Jim Koford and Don Principe have a longstanding partnership, as the two have been working together for more than seven years. Koford noted that gaining experience, no matter the tenure of the relationship, is still very important to the pair.
“He’s been my buddy for a long time. This is his eighth year at Grand Prix, so we’ve had this freestyle since he was 9 or 10, and now he’s 17. We pretty much have it down pat,” laughed Koford. “It’s always fun to ride a freestyle in this atmosphere, though. The setting is beautiful and the crowd was very enthusiastic. I’m very pleased with how it went.”
Nora Batchelder and Bahai finished their Grand Prix Freestyle choreography with a score of 66.05 percent. Batchelder, of Williston, Florida, and her 12-year-old Hanoverian mare by Baroncelli rose to the occasion.
“It’s been great to ride in this venue,” Batchelder said. “It’s just unbelievable, and the footing is incredible. The first test yesterday, she was a little bit worried with the atmosphere and the flags, but she was more confident today.
“This is our third time riding the freestyle, and the music gives her a bit of confidence,” she continued. “I was proud of her because she definitely stepped up to overcome some of what she was nervous about yesterday. It was a great way to finish the weekend.”
Judge Linda Zang (USA) commented on the competition at TIEC and expressed her excitement with the opportunities the facility offers competitors of all levels.
“I think that we had a great group of riders here this week, and I was very glad to see a lot of Canadian combinations in this group,” Zang said. “This will become a great stop for people traveling from the South back up North after the winter season. I think we’ll see more and more riders here. I’m hopeful that there will be a lot more American riders who can swing through as well. This venue will encourage more CDI competitions outside of Florida and California, which I think is fantastic.”
Chris Von Martels and Divertimento Win FEI Grand Prix Special CDI 3*
Chris von Martels (CAN) piloted Divertimento, owned by Lövsta Stuteri, to their first CDI win together in the Grand Prix Special CDI3* presented by Adequan, receiving a 70.490 percent. Karen Pavicic (CAN) and Don Daiquiri finished in second place with a 69.745 percent, while Megan Lane (CAN) and Caravella rounded out the top three with a 69.218 percent.
Von Martels and Divertimento have continued to solidify their partnership and displayed a continued sense of growth and understanding in the ring.
“I was very delighted with him today,” von Martels said. “He was very with me and I think today was even more electric in the stadium than yesterday, because there were more spectators here this afternoon. He was really in tune with me and waiting on my aids.”
He added, “I really believe that this was the best test I’ve ridden on him in the way our relationship has gone so far. I’m very happy. I think this is my fifth show with him, and each show you learn something new and take something else away from it. Now, I really would like to keep these nice, clean and accurate tests, but add a bit more power and brilliance where I can.”
Karen Pavicic and Don Daiquiri picked up second place with a strong showing, receiving a 69.218 percent from the judging panel. Pleased with their performance, Pavicic felt as though she entered the ring with more horse than she had in Friday’s Grand Prix.
“He was much better today than yesterday,” Pavicic said. “I was happier with my ride overall, and I still would like to have a little bit more energy and brilliance within the movements. I was going for a clean test, and he felt more energetic and in front of my leg.”
“I’m overall really happy with this week,” Pavicic said. “A big thank you to Mark Bellissimo and his team for this; also a huge thank you to Adequan® for their support. Without their sponsorship, shows like this wouldn’t be possible. It’s so impressive, and I will come back here with every opportunity for sure.”
Lane, who also placed third in Friday’s Grand Prix, felt that improvements made the day prior carried over to Saturday’s class with her own Caravella. The duo produced a harmonious and balanced test, hindered only by a small mistake in the one-tempis.
“Honestly, I feel a lot of the same sentiments as Chris. I went for a little bit more energy today and had an unfortunate mistake in the one-tempis, but she gave me everything I asked of her in terms of the cadence,” Lane explained. “There are improvements in the piaffe for sure, which I was really pleased with throughout the show.”
She continued, “She reacted really well to this stadium and this atmosphere. This was a great show for us, and we were able to execute a lot of the concepts we’ve been focusing on in our training.”
Lindsay Kellock (CAN) and Royal Prinz, owned by Teresa Simmons, won the FEI Intermediaire I CDI3* presented by Adequan with a score of 67.684 percent. Jessica Jo Tate (USA) and Kynynmont Gunsmoke’s Gideon, owned by Pamela Liddell, finished in second place, receiving a 66.368 percent, while Emily Miles (USA) and Sir Sherlock, owned by Leslie Waterman, earned third place with a score of 59.263 percent.
Results: Tryon CDI3*
Grand Prix Freestyle CDI3* presented by Adequan
1. Ashley Holzer/CAN/Dressed In Black/Ashley Holzer and Dr. Diane Fellows/71.502%
2. James Koford/USA/Don Principe/Maryanna Haymon/66.100%
3. Nora Batchelder/USA/Bahai/Nora Batchelder/66.050%
Grand Prix Special CDI3* presented by Adequan
1. Chris Von Martels/CAN/Divertimento/Lövsta Stuteri/70.490%
2. Karen Pavicic/CAN/Don Daiquiri/Jayne Essig and Karen Pavicic/69.745%
3. Megan Lane/CAN/Caravella/Megan Lane/69.218%
4. Brittany Fraser/CAN/All In/Brittany Fraser and Marc-Andre Beaulieu/69.157%
5. James Koford/USA/Rhett/Shirley McQuillan/64.176%
6. Katie Poag/USA/Zonnekoning/Katie Poag/62.000%
Intermediaire I CDI3* presented by Adequan
1. Lindsay Kellock/CAN/Royal Prinz/Teresa Simmons/67.684%
2. Jessica Jo Tate/USA/Kynynmont Gunsmoke’s Gideon/Pamela Liddell/66.368%
3. Emily Miles/USA/Leslie Waterman/59.263%
4. Emily Miles/USA/Floretienne/Leslie Waterman/59.263%
5. Danielle Vitosh/USA/Sandro Simian/Danielle Vitosh/56.474%
6. Kassandra Barteau/USA/Aramo/Kassandra Barteau/53.053%