Rio, here we come! The U.S. Team has earned their spot for the 2016 Olympic Games!

The U.S. team came to these Pan American Games on a mission of securing an Olympic qualifying spot for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.  The U.S. team put in spectacular rides, in extremely hot weather, to earn their winning not only for the Olympic Rio spot, but also the team Gold and individual Gold by Steffen Peters at this week’s Pan Am Games in Toronto.  The four riders—Sabine Schut-Kery, Kimberly Herslow, Laura Graves and Steffen Peters completed their mission by winning the team competition on a combined score of 460.50. Canada took silver with 454.93 points, and Brazil earned bronze (414.89).

We want to congratulate all the teams who competed and rode so well with excellent scores and lots of strong competition from Canada and South America….”To be at the Pan Am Games was really a wonderful experience watch so many good rides from the South American and Canadian competitors that we don’t get enough opportunity to see” Angela Slater, founder of Grand Meadows

Only one team from North America can qualify for the Olympics – It doesn’t seem fair does it?   Steffen Peters commented:  “Thanks for my teammates who did a fantastic job and brought the score along,” said Peters. “I was worried  when the Canadians did such an extraordinary job on Saturday. I sat down and said to myself, ‘What if we can’t go to the Olympics?’ I felt bad for a moment, and then I thought, my gosh, that’s the situation the Canadian riders are in now.’ I’m just hoping in the future that the FEI changes the rules, and that two teams from the Americas get to go to the Olympics. The rules need to change, and I’m hoping we see Canada at the Olympics in 2020.”

The Canadian squad; Brittany Fraser on All In, Christopher Von Martels on Zilverstar, Megan Lane on Caravella and Belinda Trussell on Anton certainly did not shed any tears and were riding high off some of their own personal best rides and high scores they all earned at the Pan Am Games.

CanadianTeam

“In my very long life being in international dressage sport, this was for me the real highlight,” said a visibly emotional Canadian coach Volker Moritz. “I’m very grateful to my riders for all eight performances; they had all clear, personal bests by far. They rode fantastic, and that made me so happy and so proud.”

Of all three teams, Brazil was the most visibly excited on the podium, with Sarah Elizabeth Waddell, who rode Donelly 3, doing a little dance before jumping up. The four riders (Waddell, Leandro Aparecido da Silva on Di Caprio, Joao Victor Marcari Oliva on Xama Dos Pinhais and Joao Paulo dos Santos on Veleiro Do Top) had to fight for their own medal over Mexico, who finished a close fourth with 412.46, and they didn’t have the benefit of a big tour score coefficient.

 “We didn’t have the stress here to have a place on the podium to get an Olympics place, since we’re hosting the next games, but Brazil is not the biggest nation in dressage,” said Waddell. “Coming here and being with the U.S. and Canadian team with riders—who are seventh and eighth in the world—to us, that’s a big deal. We had a long journey to get here, both from the qualifications and the trip and everything and still succeeded.”

The 2015 Pan Am Games Are Almost Here

Pan Am Equestrian Games

Everyone I know is talking about Vegas. Ok, so the World Cup in particular, which is right around the corner. And that’s great. And pretty close. But what I am really excited about is the Pan American Games. Truly, here at Grand Meadows we can’t contain our enthusiasm.

We are so excited that one of our Sponsored Riders, Sabine Schut-Kery and Sanceo, have become serious competitors for a spot on the Pam Am Dressage to compete at the 2015 Pan Am Games to be held July 10 through 26 in Toronto, Canada.  We are contemplating a field trip! The equestrian events will be held at the Caledon Equestrian Park in Palgrave.

This year Dressage will be held first from July 11 to 14, Eventing July 17 to 19, and Show Jumping July 21 to 25.

Although the U.S. teams have not been decided, our Dressage Team is going to have some big shoes to fill. In 2011, Americans set the record by earning the highest Dressage scores in the history of the games, and winning all Individual and Team Medals under Coach Anne Gribbons. Overall, the USA has brought home the most medals in 14 of the 16 games!

This first Pan Am games was held in 1951 in Buenos Aires and the Equestrian Competition has always been included. The Equestrian portion of the Games is run under the direction of the Federation Equestrian International (FEI), while the Games themselves are governed by the Pan American Sports Organization (PASO).

To participate in the Games, a country must have established a National Olympic Committee (NOC) recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and affiliated with the PASO.  All competitors must be nationals of the country they represent.

Forty-one nations from North, South and Central America, as well as the Caribbean, will send more than 7,000 athletes to compete in 36 different sports – the same sports that are recognized in the Summer Olympics held the following year. They may also contain sports not recognized in the Olympics if sanctioned by the PASO. Only 12 athletes from each country can compete in a Pan Am Games across the board of the different sports. This will be the third time Canada has hosted a Pan Am games, but the first for Toronto.

To read more About the Pan Am Games for 2015 please visit these links:

 

USA Pan American Games Shooting for European Tour Qualification

sabine-schut-keryQualification selection for the United States Big and Small Tour that will head to Europe for the Pan American Games is close at hand.

We want to congratulate our sponsored rider,  Sabine Schut-Kery, who is one of the top ranked Prix St. Georges/Intermediate 1 combinations, riding Sanceo and currently seated in third in the selection rankings.

The rankings of the top four Big Tour combinations will hold their positions and not change by the last qualifying competition – the Golden State Dressage CDI3* in Rancho Murieta, California this upcoming weekend as none of the top four contenders are competing.

The selection procedures call for the top ranking Grand Prix/Special and top Prix St. Georges/Intermediate 1 pairs as of Sunday, April 5 to go to Europe to compete in a lineup of shows before selection in mid-June of the team of mixed Big and Small Tour duos at the Pan Ams in Toronto in July.

The team of four horses and riders is critically important as only one nation will qualify through the Pan Ams for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016, and that team must include at least one Grand Prix pair.

With just days to go for qualification for the United States Big and Small Tour combinations to head to Europe to select the team for the Pan American Games, all but a few of the highest scoring eight riders and horses are decided.

The rankings of the top four Big Tour combinations are almost certainly not going to be changed by the last qualifying competition – the Golden State Dressage CDI3* in Rancho Murieta, California this weekend – as none of the contenders are competing.

The selection procedures call for the top ranking Grand Prix/Special and top Prix St. Georges/Intermediate 1 pairs as of Sunday, April 5 to go to Europe to compete in a lineup of shows before selection in mid-June of the team of mixed Big and Small Tour duos at the Pan Ams in Toronto in July.

The team of four horses and riders is critically important as only one nation will qualify through the Pan Ams for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016, and that team must include at least one Grand Prix pair.

The top ranked Grand Prix/Special pairs at the end of March are:

  1. Steffen Peters of San Diego, California and Legolas, 13-year-old Westfalen gelding owned by Four Winds Farm of Akiko Yamazaki and Jerry Yang. The combination are the reigning U.S. champions and have an average of 77.330 in the Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special required qualifying events;
  2. Laura Graves of Geneva, Florida, and Verdades, 13-year-old KWPN gelding, the highest ranked American combination at No. 10 in the world and owned by Laura, with an average of 75.716;
  3. Steffen Peters and Rosamunde, eight-year-old Rhinelander mare owned by Four Winds Farm of Akiko Yamazaki and Jerry Yang, that made her international Grand Prix debut in January and have an average of 74.587, and
  4. Allison Brock of Wellington, Florida and Rosevelt, 13-year-old Hanoverian stallion owned by Claudine and Fritz Kundrun with an average of 72.440.

Kathleen Raine of Rancho Murieta, California on Breanna, 15-year-old Hanoverian mare is in fifth place on 72.108.

The top ranked Prix St. Georges/Intermediate 1 combinations are:

  1. Kimberly Herslow of Stockton, New Jersey on Rosmarin, 10-year-old Hanoverian gelding owned by her family’s Kiroli Enterprises LLC, with an average of 73.086;
  2. Olivia LaGoy-Weltz of Middleburg, Virginia on Rassing’s Lonoir, 11-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding owned by Olivia with an average of 72.941;
  3. Sabine Schut-Kery of Thousand Oaks, California on Sanceo, nine-year-old Hanoverian stallion on an average of 72.399, and
  4. Kasey Perry of Orangevale, California on Goerklintgaards Dublet, 12-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding owned by her family with an average of 71.711.

Charlotte Jorst of Reno, Nevada on Kastel’s Adventure in sixth place on 71.046, and Elizabeth Ball of Encinitas, California on Avanti in the seventh spot on 70.974, are competing this weekend with the aim of earning scores high enough to put them in the top four.

The European shows lined up as qualifying competitions are Munich Germany; Lipica, Slovenia; Aachen, Germany and Achleiten, Austria.