Dream Gait Friesians, and BSF got together again to attend one of the most amazing equine events of the year--- the World Cup in Las Vegas, apr 16-19.
With ringside seats, and Lynn spear heading getting us awesome tickets to TWO Cirque De Soleil Shows.... Terry, Jerry, Lynn and I thoroughly enjoyed our time together in tinsel town, Las Vegas, NV.
It was a great time. I love seeing the Dream Gait Friesian family and spending time together. To call Lynn, Terry and Jerry (of Dream Gait Friesians) friends is an understatement.
Reigning Champions Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro Won FEI the Grand Prix FEI World Cup Final in Las Vegas.
Great Britain's Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro wowed the crowd and the judges Thursday afternoon with their winning performance in the FEI Grand Prix competition at the Reem Acra FEI World Cup™ Dressage Final. Their superb test earned the pair a score of 85.414% to clinch the top spot, along with wild cheers and a standing ovation from the 7,344 spectators that filled the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas. Charlotte and Valegro are the only duo in the history of the sport of dressage to hold Olympic, World, European and World Cup titles simultaneously, as well as all three world records. Twelfth to go in Grand Prix starting order, the pair kept their cool and executed their test like seasoned professionals, which earned them seventeen perfect-10's for movements throughout their performance, and the number one position from all seven judges.
"I was really, really happy today," said Dujardin. "He's had a long trip to get here and for the past few days he hasn't really felt like himself, so I was a little bit worried yesterday. Luckily today it hasn't been so hot so he managed to cope better today." "I had a great ride," continued the defending Champion. "I was really happy with the test. I think the first part took me a little bit to get into, but then the canter work felt really good. I enjoyed it and the crowd was great!"
Edward Gal of The Netherlands had a fantastic performance aboard his 2012 Olympic mount Glock's Undercover N.O.P., scoring 79.057% to finish in second place. This is the pair's third FEI World Cup™ Final together, and Gal hoped to reclaim the World Cup™ title he won in 2010 with the famed black stallion Totilas.
"I feel great and it was really good!" said Gal. "Glock's Undercover felt a little bit tense at some parts, and I had some mistakes which was a pity, but still I was really pleased with him, especially after three days off after quarantine. He reacted really well with the audience so I was really happy."
Steffen Peters of the U.S., who won the FEI World Cup™ Dressage title in 2009 when the Final was last held in the U.S., took third place with Legolas 92, the horse he competed at the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Caen, France. Their test earned cheers and another standing ovation from the crowd, and Peters was obviously thrilled with their performance as he grinned from ear-to-ear, and even gave the air a 'fist-pump' after his final salute.
"It's so exciting!" said Peters. "I can guarantee you that I'm probably even more excited than the two of them put together," said Peters with a laugh referring to Gal and Dujardin. "First of all, I'm so proud of Legolas. It's been a very long, difficult and challenging way to prepare for this and I'm so glad it worked out," said the three-time Olympian who played an audio tape of crowd noises whenever he schooled Legolas at home during both morning and evening sessions to prepare him for the atmosphere at the Thomas & Mack Center.
The LONGINES FEI World Cup Jumping Final had Switzerland, France, Ireland and United States in the Top Four.
Three days of intense competition and four demanding rounds, in a tight indoor arena with enthusiastic crowds - were the elements that made for watching the nail clinching finals. After forty-nine rounds in the FEI World Cup Jumping Final, only six riders were without faults. Riding a mare that he's competed on for less than a year, Swiss rider Steve Guerdat earned the LONGINES FEI World Cup Jumping Final title of Champion.
Guerdat, the leader going into the last round, knew all too well what demands he faced as he trotted into the arena. No stranger to this level of competition, the decorated show jumper had come close to winning this coveted title each of the last three years. As one of the six that went clean in the first round, and maintaining a zero score, he had a commanding lead with room for error.
"In the last nine or ten years, I was on the podium three times, twice in the jump-off. Every year I was in the top ten," said Guerdat. Of course I was nervous, but I'm lucky to have great people around me, to keep me calm and confident." The final day began with a tie between Rich Fellers aboard the fabulous Irish Sport Horse Flexible and Steve Guerdat on the fierce Selle Francais mare Albfuehren's Paille. After Guerdat's clean round, Fellers and Flexible had two late rails for an unusual eight fault round. Guerdat took over the lead. Guerdat gave credit to his horse. "I like that she is a real fighter. I know that today in the Championship, a lot of horses were struggling, so you really needed a fighter if you wanted to do the job. She knows her job, and every time she sees a fence, she wants to clear it, no matter how. So that's her biggest quality, and I think she really deserves my hat off to her today." Nipping at the leader's heels was the other Irish superstar, nineteen-year-old Bertram Allen and the Anglo-European-bred wonder mare Molly Malone V. After Thursday, he led the pack. With a rail in each of the ensuing rounds, the youngster finished with an impressive nine penalty points, and a well-earned third place.
The entertainment capital of the world, LAS VEGAS, provided the ideal backdrop, as proven by the 73,895 spectators who came to see world-class athletes compete in both the Reem Acra FEI World Cup Dressage Final as well as the LONGINES FEI World Cup Jumping Final.
Thank you to Dream Gait Friesians, Lynn, Jerry and Terry for sharing this special time together!