WELLINGTON, Fla.--On the second day of competition for the Nations Cup CDIO 3* at the Global Dressage Festival, the United States team won the gold medal with 437.693 points over the silver medal Canadian team with 433.685 points, and team Germany took the bronze with 402.724 points.
The U.S. riders secured their victory after strong performances in the Intermediate 1* CDIO3* and Grand Prix Special CDIO3*.
Shelly Francis on Danilo took the top spot again today in the Grand Prix Special CDIO3* with a score of 71.447 percent after an error in her test.
“I was really excited with Danilo with this whole show so far because he’s getting more consistent," said Francis. "He feels awesome, and he feels more honest. I feel like it was a great show.”
“When I went off course I was like ‘Oh my god, everybody is going to be mad," said Francis, concerned with letting her team down. "That’s it, I just ruined the whole thing.’ I was trying to make it pretty perfect and sometimes that happens. It is really fun to do a team competition.”
Charlotte Jorst on Kastel’s Nintendo wassecond spot in the Special with a score of 71.064 percent.
“I THOUGHT it was a tremendous experience to be here in Wellington,” said Jorst. “I was weak in the knees when I saw my teammates go in. You’re more nervous for them than you would ever be for yourself, and I think it’s such a fantastic opportunity for us. We’re so thankful to The Dutta Corp. and to everybody for putting this together for us.”
“The highlight for me was the learning experience from yesterday today,” Jorst said. “For me it’s always having great rides and getting better at something. So yesterday I messed up my changes, and today I got better at my changes and I got my confidence back.”
Ashley Holzer on Valentine had the third highest score in theI Intermediate 1* CDIO3* on a 71.265 percent.
“I’m very honored to be on the American team with these amazing riders and friends,” said Holzer. “I think it’s amazing to have more opportunities to ride on a team. There is a team pressure that comes on, no matter if it’s a Nations Cup here in Wellington where you ride a lot.
“I do think that the more you used to get used to riding as a team you can feel a little bit more supported by your teammates, instead of feeling pressured by them,”said Holzer.
Jennifer Baumert on Handsome was fourth in the Intermediate on 70.941 percent.
“I’m certainly very honored to have made the team,” said Baumert. “It feels amazing to have these three wonderful ladies here with me and to have won the gold.”
Tina Irwin of Canada on Laurencio won the Intermediare on a score of 73.588 percent, which helped Canada to the silver medal.
“The season has been full of highs and lows for me," said Irwin. "I started off back at small tour this year after doing grand prix last year. I was a little bit rusty, so getting my feet wet and getting back into it. Then I got kicked, and thought I broke my hand. Luckily, I did not. I had entered the show two weeks ago and thought, ‘I can’t ride, clearly,’ so I gave my husband Jaimey the ride, and he did amazing.”
“Luckily I was able to get back into shape fairly quickly," Irwin said. "I had to push through the pain a little bit, but I can’t complain really. Laurencio is steady, he has temperament for a 10, he has quality, and he’s so fun to ride. I feel really lucky to have a horse like him,” concluded Irwin.
In the Grand Prix 16-25 CDIO-U25, Lauren Asher on West Side won with a score of 70.051 percent, taking home her second gold medal after helping her U.S. U-25 team to gold on Wednesday.
“I always try and come into a competition with an open mind,” said Asher. “When you compete, you want to do your absolute best, but I never have the attitude that ‘Hey, I want to be on top.’
“I don’t want to put an expectation on it," said Asher. "I just want to have the best possible ride that I can with the horse at that moment. I think it’s just a compilation of things really. Being prepared, having a good setup, and the management at home. I’m really fortunate I have a super team behind me.”