Ashley Holzer Rides Breaking Dawn to Victory & Personal Best in Special at New Jersey CDI3*

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Ashley Holzer and Breaking Dawn on their way to personal best in Olympic Grand Prix Special. © 2012 SusanJStickle.com

ALLENTOWN, New Jersey, May 27–Ashley Holzer and Breaking Dawn scored a personal best in winning the Olympic Grand Prix Special at the ESDCTA Memorial Weekend CDI3* Sunday, and possibly placed the combination at the top of the Canadian Olympic rankings just two months ahead of the opening of the London Games.

The score of 72.978 per cent for the three-time Olympian and the 11-year-old KWPN gelding (Akribori x Eveline x L.Ronald) previously named Ultiems Flemming was more than two percentage points better than the previous high of 70.800 per cent awarded during last winter’s Florida circuit. An unofficial calculation put the pair’s average of their four best scores–two at Grand Prix and two at the Special–a fraction higher than the average with her 2008 Olympic mount, Pop Art.

Cesar Parra of Whitehouse Station, New Jersey, and Van the Man were second on 66.489 per cent with Elisabeth Austin of Williston, Vermont, on Olivier in third place with 63.667.

The Canadian pair’s victory in the Special came after a one-two finish in the Grand Prix with Breaking Down ahead of Pop Art.

Then Ashley rode Pop Art to victory in the Grand Prix Freestyle Saturday night with a score of 71.625 per cent. Susanne Hassler and Harmony’s Baroncelli were second on 65.750 per cent and  Heather Mason and Respekt third on 63.425 per cent, the only three combinations competing.

Breaking Dawn is owned by P.J. Rizvi whose husband is one of the producers of the phenomenally popular movie series for which the horse is named and whose barn name is Edward after one of the lead characters. Ashley has been competing at Grand Prix since last November and this was only his seventh show.

Ashley described Breaking Dawn and Pop Art as “awesome” this weekend but said she thought Breaking Dawn would be her horse for the Canadian Olympic team although would take whihever of the two horses are scoring higher.

“I think Edward is really coming into his own,” she told dressage-news.com. “He feels like he is enjoying his job and is really fun to ride.

“He was so great. Better than ever. Really excited!!!”

Ashley fills the top two places with Breaking Dawn and Pop Art in the Canadian rankings which are based on averages of the top four scores in the Grand Prix and the Special at CDI3* and above anywhere in the world before the cutoff date of June 18.

Results –

Olympic Grand Prix Special:
1. Ashley Holzer CAN Breaking Dawn 72.978%
2. Cesar Parra USA Van the Man 66.489%
3. Elisabeth Austin USA Olivier 63.667%
4. Lauren Sammis USA Sagacious HF 61.58%
5. Diana Mukpo USA Pascal 60.978%
6. Lindsay Kellock CAN Eminence 60.600%

Grand Prix Freestyle
1. Ashley Holzer CAN Pop Art 71.625%
2. Susanne Hasslet USA Harmony’s Baroncelli 65.750%
3. Heather Mason USA Respekt 63.425%