Sabine Schut-Kery “Tweaks” Competing Sanceo at Wellington National Show to Log Highest Ever Grand Prix Special Score

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Sabine Schut-Kery on Sanceo at the Global Dressage Festival national competition. © 2021 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

By KENNETH J. BRADDICK

WELLINGTON, Florida, Feb. 19, 2021–Sabine Schut-Kery was able to “tweak” Sanceo and not “just be happy to get through” a Grand Prix Special ride as she competed in a national competition at the Global Dressage Festival Friday for the first time this year in a campaign for a place on America’s Olympic team.

Sabine and the 15-year-old Hanoverian stallion made no mistakes in the Grand Prix Special before two judges who awarded a score of 76.808%, the highest for a Grand Prix or Special ride in just over three years at top sport, both national and international.

Sabine and Sanceo, owned by Alice Womble, are second on the U.S. rankings for the Olympic team, behind Steffen Peters of San Diego, California on Suppenkasper.

U.S. team coach Debbie McDonald and personal coach Christine Traurig were at the arena to watch Friday’s ride that Sabine of Thousand Oaks, California said was a warmup for the top rated CDI5* next week in which 18 combinations from five nations have been invited to compete for a share of the $150,000 purse.

“I’m super happy,” Sabine told dressage-news.com. “It’s always nice to have a clean test.”

The hot and humid South Florida weather was also welcome experience in the event she makes the team as it is similar to what is expected in Tokyo if the Games go ahead at the end of July.

Sabine first began competing Sanceo (San Renmo x Ramiro’s Son II) as a four-year-old in 2010. The pair competed in the world six-year-old championships in Verden, Germany.

The duo earned team gold at Small Tour at the 2015 Pan American Games in Toronto, and began national Grand Prix the following year, moving to the international arena in 2018.

“I think I’m at the point where we can start tweaking things and not just be happy to get through it,” she said. “I tried a couple of different things today, to push a little bit more, risk more.

“It’s a fun feeling. The whole journey is fun, but for me it’s the first time experimenting that part where you get to tweak more and push more. What the coaches said in November what needs to get better… it’s fun to work on and go there. So it’s really exciting for me.”