Danish Championships in Photos, by Claudia Gundersen

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Danish Champion rider Lone Bang Larsen (center) with Florida-based riders Lars Petersen and Mikala Münter Gundersen who placed second and third.  2014 Claudia Gundersen
Danish Champion rider Lone Bang Larsen (center) with Florida-based riders Lars Petersen and Mikala Münter Gundersen who placed second and third. 2014 Claudia Gundersen

Lone Bang Larsen won the 2014 Danish Championships riding Fitou L after winning both the Grand Prix and the Freestyle and placing second in the Special, while the Florida-based Lars Petersen on Mariett and Mikala Münter Gunderssen on My Lady turned in performances for second and third placings.

Lars and Mikala, both of whom have lived in Wellington for the past 10  years, will be among riders and horses looking to be on Denmark’s team at the World Equestrian Games in Normandy, France at the end of August.

The group includes Lone as well as Anna Kasprzak and Donnperignon, the Olympic and European Championship combination ranked No. 5 in the world that had to skip the championships as her horse is still recovering from eye surgery.

Lars Petersen on Mariett in the honor round at the Danish Championshps. © 2014 Claudia Gundersen
Lars Petersen on Mariett in the honor round at the Danish Championshps. © 2014 Claudia Gundersen

Before competing again, though, Lars will fly to Gladstone, New Jersey to coach some riders in another championships, the United States Festival of Champions presented by the Dutta Corp. Melissa Taylor, his wife and Grand Prix rider and trainer at their Legacy Farms, will keep Mariett tuned up while he’s away.

The 16-year-old Danish Warmblood mare, he said, was a “bit tired” from the three straight competitions coming a week after success at the Hamburg Dressage Derby. Lars and Mariett were the top money-earning pair at the winter-long Adequan Global Dressage Festival in Wellington and finished atop the World Cup North American League.

When he returns to Europe, he’ll take the 16-year-old Danish Warmblood owned by Marcia Pepper whom he thanks at every opportunity for the chance to ride Mariett, to work with Danish coach Rudolf Zeillinger ahead of the Nations Cup at the World Equestrian Festival in Aachen, Germany.

An excited Mikala Münter Gundersen on My Lady after her Freestyle that the commentator described in fun as "American." © 2014 Claudia Gundersen
An excited Mikala Münter Gundersen on My Lady after her Freestyle that the commentator described in fun as “American.” © 2014 Claudia Gundersen

At Aachen, he will link up with Mikala, whose daughter shot the photos in this report, for the Danish team after she rides in Rotterdam next week.

My Lady, said Mikala, “was fantastic all three days.” Some mistakes in the championships didn’t take away from the fact the 14-year-old Danish Warmblood mare by Michellino “has been better than ever.”

“She has been moving like a ballerina.” Mikala said, “and today she was literally dancing to the music.”

Janne Rumbough, the Danish-born long-time Florida resident who bought My Lady for Mikala Münter Gundersen to compete. © 2014 Claudia Gundersen
Janne Rumbough, the Danish-born long-time Florida resident who bought My Lady for Mikala Münter Gundersen to compete. © 2014 Claudia Gundersen