Tinne Vilhelmsson-Silfvén Rides Divertimento to Personal Best Score to Win Wellington World Cup Grand Prix
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By KENNETH J. BRADDICK
WELLINGTON, Florida, Jan, 23–Tinne Velhelmsson-Silfvén returned Divertimento to the competition arena Thursday after a break of eight months and posted a personal best score of 75.000 per cent to capture the Global Dressage Festival World Cup Grand Prix in an all-Scandinavian top three finish for the second time this winter circuit.
Lars Petersen, riding Mariett with the hope of a high placing to celebrate the birthday of owner Marcia Pepper, was second on 73.320 per cent and fellow Florida-based Dane Mikala Munter Gundersen was third on 71.640 per cent.
“I really hoped for a good placing and I’m glad we did so well,” Lars said,” because it’s Marcia’s birthday and she lets me ride this terrific horse.” The horse was originally bought for Marcia as an amateur rider but in a lengthy recuperation from a freak accident that they feared would end the horse’s competition career, Marcia wanted Lars to keep showing the horse.
The pair are the top ranked combination in the World Cup North American League but because he is Danish and cannot take one of the two places reserved for North American citizens he can only hope for an invitation as a wild card to the Final in Lyon, France in mid-April.
The rising young Canadian Megan Lane on Caravella was fourth on 71.020 per cent while United States 2012 Olympic team combination Adrienne Lyle on Wizard was the highest placed American on 70.100 per cent.
The Swedish multi-Olympian and the two Danish combinations won the World Cup event that earlier this month kicked off the Global Dressage Festival winter circuit of eight international competitions that has attracted competitors from almost 20 countries.
Twenty-nine combintions from seven nations started Thursday’s Grand Prix but it did not fare well initially for the host nation when Caroline Roffman of Wellington starting Her Highness O in their first international Grand Prix were eliminated when the mare showed blood on her mouth.
Katherine Bateson-Chandler, however, showed Wellnetta for the first time since the KWPN mare was bought last summer from Laurens van Lieren of the Netherlands. Katherine and the 11-year-old horse scored 68.380 per cent for eighth place.
Tinne said Divertimento, who plays second fiddle to her Olympic and World Cup mount Don Auriello but both started their Grand Prix careers in Florida, felt much more mature after the lengthy break and the ride was the best she had felt with the Westfalen gelding.
Their previous highest Grand Prix score was 74.383 per cent in Florida two years ago.
Adrienne who is based in Hailey, Idaho but is in Florida for the wintr circuit said that Wizard felt “amazing” for his first time back in a CDI Grand Prix after a year out with an injury.
“He felt much better,” she said, “we’re going in the right direction. We plan to get in the ring fairly often.”