Tinne Vilhelmson Silfvén to Debut Benetton Dream at CDI Grand Prix at Florida’s Global Dressage Festival

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Tinne Vilhelmsson Silfvén and Benetton Dream. © 2014 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Tinne Vilhelmsson Silfvén and Benetton Dream. © 2014 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

Dec 1, 2014 By KENNETH J. BRADDICK Tinne Vilhelmson Silfvén is taking Benetton Dream to Florida’s 2015 Global Dressage Festival to launch the stallion’s international Grand Prix career, following in the hoofprints of her Olympic and World Games mount Don Auriello. The six-time Olympic rider for Sweden plans to start the 10-year-old Hanoverian in World Cup events in Wellington’s schedule of seven CDIs over 12 weeks from January through the end of March. Four World Cup events, big money CDI4* and CDI5* competitions and a Nations Cup are on the Global calendar. Benetton Dream’s international career debut comes after eight victories in eight national-level classes ridden by Tinne, the latest success coming in the developing Grand Prix at Sweden International Horse Show in Stockholm at the end of November. Tinne, 47 years old and the mother of a teenage son, will be spending her fifth straight winter in Florida competing the lineup of horses owned by the international business tycoon Antonia Ax:son Johnson’s Lövsta Stuteri. But she doesn’t expect to get a berth with any of the three Grand Prix mounts in the World Cup Final in Las Vegas in mid-April, she told dressage-news.com. She picked up 20 points as the winner of the only World Cup Western European League event she competed in. She’ll be in Florida for the rest of the 2014/2015 series and the rules allow her to add points from one show and half the points from a second event, that most likely will not give her enough to make the top nine WEL combinations that can be invited. In addition to Benetton Dream, she will compete Don Auriello, the 12-year-old Hanoverian gelding that began his Grand Prix career in Florida five years ago. In 18 competitions in Palm Beach, the duo has placed first 16 times. The pair wrapped up their 2015 European schedule last weekend with a win in the Sweden International World Cup Grand Prix Freestyle.

Tinne Vilhelmsson-Silfvén and Don Auriello celebrating a victory in Florida. © 2014 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Tinne Vilhelmsson-Silfvén and Don Auriello celebrating a victory in Florida. © 2014 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

The total of 78 international Grand Prix starts on both sides of the Atlantic include being the leading Swedish team combination in the 2012 Olympics, the 2014 World Equestrian Games and the 2013 European Championship as well as three World Cup Finals. The pair have been ranked in the world’s top 10 every month for the past two years with a high of No. 4. Divertimento, also 12 years old, will be in the string with Don Auriello and Benetton Dream. So far, the Westfalen gelding has played second fiddle to Don Auriello, beginning his international Big Tour career almost a year later. Of the total of 31 starts, 18 have been in Florida beginning in the winter of 2012. Tinne’s six Olympics began with the 1992 Barcelona Games and has continued through Atlanta in 1995, Sydney 2000, Athens 2004, Beijing 2008 and London 2012. The main goal in 2015 will be the European Championships in Aachen, Germany where Sweden will be vying for one of three places awarded there for a start at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016. Germany, Great Britain and the Netherlands qualified at the Normandy World Games.

Tinne Vilhelmson-Silfvén and Don Auriello. © 2014 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Tinne Vilhelmson-Silfvén and Don Auriello. © 2014 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com