Jennifer Baumert & Handsome Complete 2nd Small Tour Sweep This Year with Victory at Wellington CDI3* Int. 1 Freestyle

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Jennifer Baumert on Handsome after completing sweep of Global Dressage Festival CDI3* Small Tour for the second time this year. © 2018 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

WELLINGTON, Florida, Mar. 18, 2018–Jennifer Baumert and Handsome completed their second sweep of the 2018 Adequan Global Dressage Festival small tour with a victory Sunday in the Intermediate I Freestyle for the eighth win in 11 starts this season.

Jennifer and the 13-year-old Hanoverian gelding wrapped up their second Global winter circuit but plan to stay in Wellington to continue working with coach Debbie McDonald before heading to Tryon, North Carolina in a month for the World Equestrian Games test event then the U.S. championships in Chicago in August.

The duo scored 75.200 per cent in the Freestyle for the win following victories earlier in the Prix St. Georges and the Intermediate 1. It was a repeat performance of the CDI3* series five weeks ago.

Jodie Kelly-Baxley of Destin, Florida on Caymus placed second on 74.175 per cent with Canada’s Brittany Fraser on Soccer City filling third on 72.875 per cent.

“He’s awesome,” said Jennifer of Handsome that’s owned by Elizabeth “Betsy” Juliano, who also owns Salvino and Horizon, both ridden by Adrienne Lyle, who has long worked with Debbie.

“I was pumped in there because Debbie psyched me up to get him really in front of me and taking every opportunity I could between movements to push him up in front and come into every movement with a lot of power. And we did that!

“She was amping me up because I’m one of those people that wants everything to be really pretty and harmonious and nice, and she pushes me to shake it up and come out of my comfort zone. This is a great way to close, as it’s our last show at Global.”

Handsome (Hochadel x Weltmeyer) was bought by Betsy Handsome four years ago from Marie Meyers of Moorpark, California to ride herself. She handed the reins over to Jennifer Baumert 18 months ago.

Jennifer, 47 years old, logged two victories at Global in 2017. This year, it has been eight victories in 11 starts.

Jennifer Baumert competing Handsome at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center. © 2019 SusanJStickle.com

“I’ve owned Handsome close to four years but the main reason I stopped riding him is that he’s really talented and I felt he needs a rider who has equally as much talent,” Betsy said. “I also became very busy with my work–I own a litigation support and management business that I started 35 years ago–and that has kept me away from riding consistently.

“So I asked Jen to finish him at grand prix, which she will do, but right now he’s doing so well in this division that we’ll continue with it for now. I thought it best for Handsome to flourish under Jen’s guidance and Debbie McDonald’s training.”

Jennifer remembers the first she rode Handsome while visiting Betsy’s Ohio farm.

“The first time I went, Betsy asked me to sit a little bit on every horse, and I especially remember Handsome because he’s an amazing mover, he’s got so much power–it’s really something to feel. I remember how, even though I was a new rider for him, he was really tuned in and that was pretty special, because they don’t all do that.”

Betsy added, “We’ll be old and gray together, the two of us. I keep all my horses, so I have 15 now. Some are in the ‘assisted living division’ all year round in Ohio, and then the performance horses come down here.”