Melissa Taylor Completes Hat Trick on Ansgar at Wellington CDI3* Small Tour

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Melissa Taylor and Ansgar celebrating sweep of CDI3* Small Tour in final 2018 Global Dressage Festival circuit. © 2018 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

By KENNETH J. BRADDICK

WELLINGTON, Florida, Mar. 31, 2018–Melissa Taylor, who finally got Ansgar to start liking her as a rider instead of biting her last fall, rode the 13-year-old Dutch gelding to complete a hat trick of victories on the final day of the Adequan Global Dressage Festival winter circuit Saturday.

Melissa and Ansgar scored 71.833 per cent to capture the CDI3* Intermediate Freestyle, after posting their first win in the Prix St. Georges in Global’s 12th week after more than 1 1/2 years of international competition. Victory in the Intermediate 1 followed two days later. The completing the hat trick with with the Freestyle.

Ansgar was bought eight years ago by Nicole Polaski, who lives in Wellington, and competed through the U.S. levels from 2011 by other riders. Melissa took over in 2016.

Initially, Melissa, married to Danish Olympian Lars Petersen and who jointly operate Legacy Farms in neighboring Loxahatchee, thought the horse was not suitable for Nicole as an adult amateur.

Nicky agreed Melissa could compete Ansgar. Lars said re-training was required to make the horse competitive.

“Last season was a (grr!)… learning curve,” Melissa said in what was her first season ever competing on Global’s international side. “He fought against me on everything. Even though it was pretty embarrassing at times, he taught me so much.”

Last summer, she took Ansgar to smaller shows and by the time of the regional championships in Florida in September, he was listening to her. The pair went to the U.S. Finals in Kentucky in November where they won the Intermediate 1 championship freestyle.

“I was shocked. I had to show him twice in one day. I thought he’d be mad and he was wonderful.

“His personality changed a lot. He started liking me instead of biting me.”

She has every ride recorded and watches closely looking for ways to improve and studies the judges’ comments.

Jennifer Baumert, who has dominated the small tour with Handsome this season, texted congratulations. “I replied, ‘Thanks  for not showing up’.”

Melissa hopes to qualify for the U.S. Festival of Champions at Intermediate 1 this summer while working on the Grand Prix.

Results:

CDI3* Intermediate I Freestyle
H: Torrente – COL C: Clarke – GBR B: Wysocki – USA
Rider Ctzn Horse H Rk. C Rk. B Rk. T Pl.
Taylor, Melissa USA Ansgar 69.625 5 71.250 4 74.625 1 71.833 1
Ebeling, Jan USA Sergio Leone 70.500 2 74.375 1 70.050 3 71.642 2
Bell, Lori CAN Flirt 69.625 5 72.750 2 72.125 2 71.500 3
Ziegler, David CAN Fie Guldbjerg 70.325 3 71.250 4 66.425 11 69.333 4
Famiglietti, Alison CAN Let’s Dance 70.125 4 68.625 9 69.000 4 69.250 5
Kavey, Allison USA Citha’s Utopia 66.625 12 71.625 3 68.750 5 69.000 6
Kohmann, Kevin GER Sanchez 70.625 1 67.875 10 66.925 9 68.475 7
Batchelder, Nora USA Fifi MLW 66.750 11 69.125 7 68.500 6 68.125 8
Fraser, Brittany CAN Soccer City 68.750 7 67.500 11 67.250 8 67.833 9
De Haan, Yvonne USA Winter 67.500 10 69.375 6 66.375 12 67.750 10
Dutta, Susan USA Figeac DC 68.750 7 67.000 12 66.675 10 67.475 11
Tate, Jessica Jo USA Dakota 67.750 8 65.625 13 67.375 7 66.917 12
Hewitt, Hannah USA Fidens 64.900 14 69.000 8 66.125 13 66.675 13
Paris, Molly USA Diamant Sky 66.500 13 61.875 14 61.625 14 63.333 14