European Team for Wellington Nations Cup

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Marco Bernal and Farewell. © Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

WELLINGTON, Florida, April 8–Germany’s Anja Plönzke is returning to Florida this week to ride on a European team to compete in the first non-championship Nations Cup in the Western Hemisphere. The CDIO3* is also the finale of the Global Dressage Festival that offered $270,000 spread over five CDIs in its inaugural winter circuit.

Anja, who competed in January at the World Dressage Masters and then again last month on her Le Mont d’Or, will ride Wilbur on a squad with Wellington-based Mikala Gundersen of Denmark and My Lady and Austrian Katharina Stumpf and For My Lady in the CDIO3* presented by Stillpoint Farm.

The latest list of entries show riders from 12 countries make up eight teams–two mixed teams from Latin American, two from the United States, one from Australia, Canada, Europe and a group of U.S. and German combinations–to compete for $35,000 at Prix St. Georges and Intermediate levels.

The top five teams from the $5,000 CDIO3* Prix St. Georges on Friday, April 13 will move on to the Intermediate Freestyle with its $25,000 purse to be held under lights in the International Arena at the GDF grounds on Saturday night, April 14. Teams not in the Freestyle will compete at Intermediate I for $5,000 in prize money during the day on April 14.

The judging panel for the CDIO3* is Wim Ernes of The Netherlands, Isobel Wessels of Great Britain, Elizabeth McMullen of Canada, Gabriel Armando of Argentina and Janet Foy of the United States.

The event is the first phase of an ambitious undertaking to help transition dressage teams throughout the Americas to Grand Prix to qualify at the Pan American Games for future Olympics, instead of at Prix St. Georges/Intermediaire as in the past. The plan calls for teams in 2013 to be made up of both big and small tour horses with weighted scores and in 2014 to be at Grand Prix.

Nations at the 2011 Pan Ams in Guadalajara, Mexico, endorsed the idea of phasing in team development in preparation for the 2015 Games in Toronto when qualification for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics the following year is scheduled to be at Grand Prix, the same as the European Championships.

Several riders have taken advantage of FEI rules allowing Grand Prix horses to compete at Prix St. Georges/Intermediate so long as they have not placed in the first 15 in a Grand Prix at a CDIO, FEI Championships, Olympic Games or which have won three first prizes in an Intermediate II and above at a CDI3*/CDI4*/CDI5* or CDIO.

Entries for the teams are:

AUSTRALIA
Ilse Schwarz – Cadenza
Kelly Layne – Don Royal
Nicholas Fyffe Wasmut

CANADA
Diane Creech – Hallmark
Chris Von Martels – Udon P
David Marcus – Chrevi’s Capital
Lee Tubman – Vegas

EUROPE
Anja Plönzke (GER) – Wilbur
Mikala Gundersen (DEN) – My Lady
Katharina Stumpf (AUT) – For My Lady

LATIN AMEICA I
Alehandro Gomez (VEN) – Revenge
Marco Bernal (COL) – Farwell IV
Yvonne Losos de Muniz (DOM) – Dondolo Las Marismas

LATIN AMERICA II
Luis Denizard (PUR) – Nalando
Natalia Martin (PUR) – Utha Van de Begijnhoeve
Jessica McTaggert (CAY) –
Mica Mabragena (ARG) – Quaterro

MIXED
Lisa Hyslop (USA) – Rolling Stone
Bianca Berktold (GER) –
Neve Myburgh (GER) –

USA I
Caroline Roffman – Pie
Devon Kane – Destiny
Shelly Francis – Doktor
Chris Hickey – Witness Hilltop

USA II
Tom Noone – Fred Astair
Laura Graves – Verdades
Barbi Asplundh – Rising Star
Jane Cleveland – Rodeo Queen