Canada’s Belinda Trussell & Anton Capture Palm Beach Derby World Cup Grand Prix
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By KENNETH J. BRADDICK
WELLINGTON, Florida, Mar. 4, 2016–Canada’s Belinda Trussell and Anton, seeking to add the Olympics to their World Games and Pan American Games appearances, posted a personal best score to win the Palm Beach Dressage Derby World Cup Grand Prix Friday.
Belinda and the 16-year-old Sachs gelding scored 73.700 per cent for the victory that will put the pair close to the top of the Canadian Olympic rankings and the only combination with the required four scores that have to be attained by July 4.
Florida-based Danish riders on Danish Warmblood mares, Mikala Gundersen on My Lady, 16 years old, was second on 72.980 per cent and Lars Petersen on Mariett, 18 years of age, was third on 71.080 per cent.
This event was key for Denmark in seeking to qualify a fourth individual combination to make up a full team for the summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
After a Global Dressage Festival event two weeks ago, Denmark seemed assured of earning four slots–two from their geographic group and two from the open rankings of six pairs.
Lars was already scheduled to go to Denmark to train riders and horses at Blue Hors but that was canceled at the last minute when riders in some European competitions were awarded scores higher than expected that upset the rankings. He had hoped to give Mariett a break after performing in four shows at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in under two months.
Belinda Trussell competed at the Athens Olympics in 2004, and on Anton rode for Canada at the 2010 and 2014 World Games and last summer’s Pan American Games where the pair earned an individual qualification for her country.
Not happy with the previous show at Global where Anton displayed tension, Belinda said she downloaded applause tracks to her phone to try to get Anton used to the noise.
“I played it for him, he looekd at me, like… whatever.”
However, the result of 73,700 per cent beat the pair’s previous best of 73.440 per cent logged at the Pan Am Games in Toronto last July.
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