Canada’s Belinda Trussell & Anton Win Global Dressage Festival World Cup Grand Prix

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Belinda Trussell and Anton on their way to victory in the Adequan Global Dressage Festival World Cup Grand Prix. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Belinda Trussell and Anton on their way to victory in the Adequan Global Dressage Festival World Cup Grand Prix. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

By KENNETH J. BRADDICK

WELLINGTON, Florida, Jan. 28, 2016–Belinda Trussell who rode her two-time World Games team mount to qualify as an individual at the 2015 Pan American Games, won the Adequan Global Dressage Festival  World Cup Grand Prix Thursday, an event that was saved from two days of torrential downpours by a covered arena but not from widespread criticism of the judging.

The ride by Belinda on the 16-year-old Sachs gelding that scored 72.860 per cent was what she described as perhaps the most harmonious ever in almost seven years of a Grand Prix career that has taken the pair to both the 2010 World Games in Lexington and the 2014 Games in Normandy with a total of 72 Big Tour starts on both sides of the Atlantic.

“He’s a hot horse and the things that sometimes happened when we were learning the Grand Prix don’t happen now,” she said, “he knows so much we can make small changes to improve with no problems.”

Arlene “Tuny” Page of Wellington, a 2006 World Cup Final competitor, was just 0.1 behind on Woodstock for second place on 72.760 per cent, the best score for the pair in 18 months of Grand Prix in Europe and the U.S.

The result boosted the pair’s chances of being selected for a squad of eight combinations to go to Europe in the spring for selection of the American team of four horses and riders for the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

Arlene "Tuny" Page and Woodstock in the World Cup Grand rix. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Arlene “Tuny” Page and Woodstock in the World Cup Grand rix. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

Kasey Perry-Glass, the 28-year-old who moved to Wellington from California to immerse herself in her dressage career, waited through 40 rides over two days to capture third place on 72.320 per cent. She was the ninth to go on the first day of the Grand Prix that was washed out of the outdoor international arena and went to the adjacent Van Kampen arena, big enough to easily hold the competition and warmup arenas with plenty of room for spectators.

This was the first CDI Grand Prix for Kasey and Dublet whom she competed at Small Tour in Wellington and in Europe in 2015. She also placed 11th on the 17-year-old mare Trøstruplund’s Scarlet with a score of 70.120 per cent.

The performance of Laura Graves of Plymouth, Florida and Verdades was marked by several expensive mistakes that saw the pair receive a score of 71.620 per cent for seventh place.

The score was the lowest for Laura and the 14-year-old KWPN gelding since two years ago at the Global Dressage Festival and before going on an upward trajectory that took them to the World Games in Normandy, the World Cup Final in Las Vegas last April and the team gold and individual silver medals at the Pan Ams last summer. Laura and Verdades ended 2015 as the U.S. Grand Prix Champion.

The biggest complaints about the judging came from scores awarded by Christoph Hess of Germany at E and Canadian Lee Tubman directly across the arena at B. For Kasey and Dublet their scores were 77.200 per cent and 68.700 per cent, respectively.

Kasey Perry-Glass and Goerklintgaards Dublet in their first CDI Grand Prix. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Kasey Perry-Glass and Goerklintgaards Dublet in their first CDI Grand Prix. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

For Belinda and Anton, the scores from the same two were 75.200 per cent and 70.000 per cent, respectively.

Cesar Torrente of Colombia, the judge at C pointed out that throughout most of the competition the three jury members on the short side–H, C and M–were close together.

It was, he said, a long class with many horses and while “we always like to have very similar results” he used the frequently heard response to complaints, “judges sitting at different angles see different things.”

On the line for many of the competitors from 14 countries, were Olympic hopes and dreams–Americans and Australians seeking to get on their team that are among 10 nations already qualified for Rio, Canadians and Danes trying to boost the rankings of individual riders to give their countries a hope of putting together a team and individuals from different geographic groups and the world rankings.

Tinne Vilhelmson-Silfvén on Benetton Dream posted a personal best Grand Prix score in the World Cup event at Wellington, Florida. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Tinne Vilhelmson-Silfvén on Benetton Dream posted a personal best Grand Prix score in the World Cup event at Wellington, Florida. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

Belinda, the mother of two, already qualified Canada for the sole individual spot assigned from the Pan American Games in Toronto and is now riding Anton to earn selection to go to Rio. Canada will most likely get a second individual slot through the North American group but competition is fierce for six individual places based on open world rankings from countries that have not yet qualified a team.

Canada’s strategy about the Olympics has raised questions over the past year as only one team slot was available at the Pan Ams and, as expected, went to the United States. As the highest scoring rider in the group for which one individual slot was also available, that was won by Belinda and Anton. Canada will almost definitely earn a second individual start through their geographic group standing.

But because of the Pan Am results, Belinda cannot qualify Anton through the open world rankings where she has the best shot for Canada as the highest scoring combination for that country currently so the chance of the nation being able to put together a minimum of three individuals for a team is slim.

Belinda was asked about the issue by dressage-news.com after Thursday’s Grand Prix victory.

Volker Moritz, Canada’s Technical Advisor, she said, “asked me 10 months ago whether I would consider not competing in the Pan Ams so as to increase our chances of getting another placing.”

Belinda was torn, still fresh in her mind was that Anton had finally fully recovered from a bone lesion in 2011 that was feared to be career ending for the horse and kept them out of the show ring for 2 1/2 years, anyway.

“You just never know when the next ride might be your last,” said the 44-year-old rider.

“I had never done a Pan American Games, I’d never ridden in my home town before my family and my friends in a major championships and might never get the chance to do so again.”

In her lifetime there have been only three major equestrian Games in Canada–the Olympics in Montreal in 1976, the world championships in Toronto in 1986 and the Pan Ams last year. By the time of the World Games in 2018, Anton will be 18 years old.

“I thought of all the factors, the strategy for Canada on the one hand and on the other that I have two kids I could ride in front of in their home town.

“The Pan Ams was something I wanted to do from my heart.”

Results:

CDI-W Grand Prix
E: Hess – GER H: Zang – USA C: Torrente – COL M: Nivelle – GER B: Tubman – CAN
Rider Nat. Horse E Rk. H Rk. C Rk. M Rk. B Rk. Total Pl.
Trussell, Belinda CAN Anton 75.200 2 73.200 2 72.400 5 73.500 2 70.000 8 72.860 1
Page, Arlene USA Woodstock 72.800 3 72.700 3 71.900 7 75.700 1 70.700 5 72.760 2
Perry-Glass, Kasey USA Goerklintgaards Dublet 77.200 1 71.800 7 71.800 8 72.100 5 68.700 16 72.320 3
Vilhelmson-Silfven, Tinne SWE Benetton Dream 70.600 12 72.700 3 73.200 3 72.600 4 72.100 4 72.240 4
Brock, Allison USA Rosevelt 70.600 12 73.300 1 74.200 2 72.700 3 70.300 7 72.220 5
Francis, Shelly USA Doktor 72.200 6 72.400 6 74.400 1 71.900 6 69.600 11 72.100 6
Graves, Laura USA Verdades 71.100 10 69.100 14 72.400 5 71.800 7 73.700 1 71.620 7
Wilcox, Lisa USA Galant 71.900 8 71.700 8 73.200 3 71.200 8 70.000 8 71.600 8
Pavicic, Karen CAN Don Daiquiri 70.200 15 72.500 5 70.000 10 71.100 9 70.400 6 70.840
Layne, Kelly AUS Udon P 71.800 9 68.900 17 70.900 9 70.400 11 68.700 16 70.140
Perry-Glass, Kasey USA Trostruplunds Scarlet 72.600 5 69.000 16 68.300 18 68.300 17 72.400 3 70.120
Matute Jr, Juan ESP Don Diego Ymas 72.800 3 70.600 10 69.900 11 69.500 12 67.300 20 70.020
Wilcox, Lisa USA Pikko del Cerro HU 68.200 20 69.400 13 69.500 12 68.600 15 72.600 2 69.660
Marek, Anna USA Unico G 70.400 14 71.300 9 68.300 18 68.800 14 68.900 15 69.540
Rosencrantz, Mette USA Marron 70.000 17 69.700 12 69.500 12 70.800 10 67.200 22 69.440
Pape, Suzan GBR Harmony’s Fiorano 72.000 7 68.500 20 69.000 15 68.400 16 69.100 13 69.400
Francis, Shelly USA Danilo 69.200 18 69.100 14 69.200 14 68.900 13 67.400 18 68.760
Fraser, Brittany CAN All In 70.800 11 68.800 18 68.900 17 67.300 20 66.100 24 68.380
Brooks, Jacqueline M. CAN D Niro 69.100 19 68.500 20 67.400 21 66.900 21 69.100 13 68.200
Page, Arlene USA Alina 65.000 27 67.100 23 69.000 15 67.500 18 69.900 10 67.700
Jimenez Cobo, Juan Antonio ESP Sunny Boy 65.400 26 68.800 18 68.100 20 67.500 18 67.206 21 67.401
Lane, Megan CAN Caravella 70.200 15 65.800 25 66.600 23 66.200 23 67.400 18 67.240
Wallenstein, Ricardo POR Bem Me Quer 66.900 21 70.100 11 65.400 27 66.600 22 64.600 29 66.720
Ebeling, Jan USA FRH Rassolini 66.700 22 68.300 22 65.700 26 64.300 28 65.500 27 66.100
Rizvi, P.J. USA Breaking Dawn 64.000 31 65.000 27 67.400 21 63.100 33 69.600 11 65.820
Koschel, Christoph GER Butopiar 64.000 31 66.400 24 65.800 25 64.900 25 66.600 23 65.540
Strasser, Evi CAN Renaissance Tyme 65.800 24 64.000 29 64.200 30 65.900 24 65.600 26 65.100
Pot, Adrienne USA Something Special 64.700 29 64.100 28 62.900 33 64.600 26 65.000 28 64.260
Klimke, Michael GER Don William II 65.500 25 59.900 39 65.900 24 64.300 28 64.500 31 64.020
Losos de Muniz, Yvonne DOM Foco Loco-W 66.100 23 65.500 26 62.000 35 62.400 36 63.400 35 63.880
Poag, Katie USA Zonnekoning 64.800 28 61.200 35 65.100 28 64.200 30 63.900 33 63.840
Manfredi, Maria Florencia ARG Bandurria Kacero 63.400 34 62.300 33 65.100 29 61.900 37 64.200 32 63.380
Jimenez Cobo, Juan Antonio ESP Elevado 62.900 35 62.700 30 59.600 39 64.600 26 64.600 29 62.880
Tzinberg, Ellesse PHI Pavarotti 64.100 30 62.700 30 61.500 36 63.100 33 63.000 0 62.880
Lopardo-Grana, Cesar ARG Tyara 58.700 41 62.600 32 62.900 33 62.700 35 66.100 24 62.600
Rizvi, P.J. USA Unlimited 60.400 39 60.600 37 63.200 31 64.200 30 63.800 34 62.440
Nascimento, Maciel-Dum BRA Daniel de G 63.700 33 62.200 34 60.500 38 60.100 39 63.400 36 61.980
Marchand, Jennifer USA Cardeur 62.000 36 61.000 36 63.000 32 60.400 38 62.600 0 61.800
Bukowski, Lisa CAN Santos Utopia 60.700 38 60.200 38 58.300 42 63.600 32 61.000 0 60.760
Garweg, Christian CAN Delorean 57.200 45 59.100 42 57.700 43 60.100 39 60.700 0 58.960
Hamilton, Susanne USA Lord Locksley 57.308 43 59.200 40 58.700 41 59.200 41 59.000 0 58.682
Reteguiz-Denizard, Luis PUR Royal Affair 59.500 40 59.200 40 58.900 40 58.200 43 57.100 0 58.580
Sprieser, Lauren USA Ellegria 60.800 37 58.000 43 57.700 43 55.600 45 60.500 0 58.520
Priest, Kathy W. USA Wild Dancer 54.700 46 56.700 45 60.600 37 57.300 44 60.100 0 57.880
Uemura, Samira Mayumi BRA Tamarindo XI 57.300 44 57.700 44 56.600 46 58.800 42 56.900 0 57.460
Armando, Gabriel ARG Zipero 58.500 42 54.300 46 57.500 45 55.300 46 58.400 0 56.800
Vaughan, Joanne GEO Elmegarden’s Marquis Elim.
Raine, Kathleen USA Breanna Ret.
Petersen, Lars DEN Mariett Scr.