Kasey Perry-Glass & Dublet Ready for First US Grand Prix Championship
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May 15, 2017
By KENNETH J. BRADDICK
The whirlwind that has been the life of Kasey Perry-Glass on Dublet in the past year took the Californian to her first Olympics to win a bronze medal on America’s team, into her first World Cup Final and this week her first U.S. Grand Prix championship.
Kasey, 29 years old, and Dublet, the Danish Warmblood gelding now aged 14 that put Kasey in the spotlight as her partner at top sport and No. 17 in the world, is the only rider from the 2016 Rio Olympic team competing in The Dutta Corp. championships, the Festival of Champions.
Adrienne Lyle, who rode in the 2012 London Olympics, is also in both the Tim Dutta Grand Prix and Intermediate 1 championships as is Ashley Holzer whose four Olympic appearances were for Canada but is competing at Gladstone in her first championship as an American.
Before 2016, Kasey had only a couple of peeks at top sport, competing at a single national championship at small tour and on a mixed-format Nations Cup team at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival in Wellington. Bur in 14 years of shows, mostly on the West Coast, Kasey harbored the dreams that propel people to seek to excel with Olympics the ultimate goal.
“In my head it was very realistic,” Kasey said. “I like to set goals and these were huge goals but I had huge dreams.
“In everyone else’s head not so realistic.”
Her parents gave her many options, but even when confused, upset or frustrated Kasey stuck to her goal to be an international dressage rider.
“I knew I was on the right path and to keep going,” she said. “I never wanted to give up. I had this goal and dream to be an international competitor and to be on an Olympic team.”
With Dublet, Kasey was making her mark in California that she credits to a lot of good training and support before she moved to Wellington and began working with Debbie McDonald.
Training with Debbie put her among a stable of riders, some 30-somethings, others veterans of the sport, who have made America competitive again at the top tier of dressage. Among them her Olympic team mates at Rio–Laura Graves on Verdades and Allison Brock on Rosevelt, along with four-time Games rider Steffen Peters on Legolas, Adrienne Lyle, Olivia LaGoy-Weltz and Katherine Bateson-Chandler.
In 2015, she and Dublet were placing high at small tour on both sides of the Atlantic as well as on her first Nations Cup team.
A year later, the duo were at Grand Prix and in 12 starts at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival placed second or third every time, and received the team gold in the first event of the inaugural trans-Atlantic dressage Nations Cup series. Success earned the pair a trip to Europe and in their first outing led the United States to victory at the Nations Cup in Compiègne, France to put America well on the way to capturing the title in the six-event series.
Selection for the U.S. team for the Rio Olympics followed, and a bronze medal that was America’s first since Athens in 2004.
After a six-month break from competition, Kasey and Dublet were back in the ring at Wellington, riding the wave that took her to the World Cup Final at the end of March.
“It’s been such a whirlwind,” she recalled, seemingly still amazed. “Everything happened so fast. Sometimes it’s hard to live in the moment.
“I went to the Olympics, and it’s really hard to get there.
“Never give up. I know it sounds like a cliche. Don’t lose who you are. Keep your love of horses.
“There’s always going to be hard times and good times. You have to have a good support system who keep pushing you even when you want to give up. But don’t give up; keep believing in yourself.”
After the championships, Kasey hope to be on the U.S. Nations Cup teams at Rotterdam, Netherlands in June and at Aachen, Germany in July.
The World Games at Tryon are not until September next year, but with Dublet that she describes as a “really special horse,” still young and loving what he does Kasey will keep pursuing her dreams.
“I really would love to start a family,” she admitted. “My husband is such a support. He’s always the first I hear when I do well. I hear him screaming. I’m so lucky to have him.”
The Dutta Corp. championship schedule:
Thursday, May 18
8:30 am–Grand Prix
10:30 am–Prix St. Georges
2:00 pm–Intermediate II 16-25
Friday, May 19
10:40 am–Grand Prix Special
1:00 pm–Grand Prix 16-25
Saturday, May 20
11:00 am–Intermediate I
Sunday, May 21
8:00 am–Intermediate I Freestyle
11:20 am–Grand Prix Freestyle
2:00 pm–Grand Prix 16-25 Freestyle