VIDEO–Olivia LaGoy-Weltz & Lonoir Clinch World Cup Final Start With Victory in Wellington CDI-W Freestyle

7 months ago StraightArrow Comments Off on VIDEO–Olivia LaGoy-Weltz & Lonoir Clinch World Cup Final Start With Victory in Wellington CDI-W Freestyle
Olivia LaGoy-Weltz and Lonoir celebrating clinching a start in the Worrld Cup Final in Gothenburg, Sweden in three weeks. © 2021 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

WELLINGTON, Florida, Mar. 7, 2021–Olivia LaGoy-Weltz clinched a start in her first ever global championship when she rode Lonoir to victory Sunday for a personal best score in the Global Dressage Festival Grand Prix Freestyle to earn an invitation to the World Cup Final in Gothenburg, Sweden next month.

Olivia and the 17-year-old Danish Warmblood gelding scored 83.570% to beat their previous high score of 81.545% posted at the same Palm Beach International Equestrian Center three weeks ago. The musical performance came two days after a personal best result in the Grand Prix.

Canada’s Jill Irving on Arthur placed second on 76.095% with Mette Rosencrantz of San Diego, California on Dzeko third on 72.110%.

Olivia of Haymarket, Virginia on Lonoir and Charlotte Jorst of Reno, Nevada on Kastel’s Nintendo claimed the two places reserved for North America in the World Cup Final that is being held amidst the double whammy of coronavirus pandemic and an outbreak of Equine Herpes Virus that has locked down horse sports in several European nations, including Sweden, until Mar. 28. Gothenburg Horse Show events that were to be part of the World Cup in the Scandinavium stadium but were parceled out to other nearby venues because of the year-long coronavirus pandemic have now been canceled.

For Olivia, earning a start in the World Cup, the only annual global equestrian championship, is a highlight of a Grand Prix career on Lonoir that began at CDI level seven years ago. Olivia and Lonoir have been on several U.S. Nations Cup teams including gold medal squads at Wellington and Rotterdam, and silver in Aachen, Germany all in 2017.

“I think there was relief when we came down that final centerline,” said the 37-year-old rider. “There was a small fear that since this was the last World Cup qualifier, something would go wrong, and you really just hope you make it to the end of the test.

Olivia LaGoy-Weltz on Lonoir for the presentation of the Palm Beach Dressage Derby award by Mary Anne McPhail who owns the derby and is an owner with Olivia of Lonoir. The award is held by Walter Nef. © 2021 SusanJStickle.com

“He’s just such a special horse, and though he is getting older, it just seems like we are just getting better, and I feel very lucky that it’s going that way.”

She said the freestyle is at the maximum degree of difficulty so she will make no changes for the Final.

“If I do anything more difficult I don’t get rewarded,” she said, “so I think this seems to be working, that would be more risk without reward. It’s just about getting it a little more polished and better. He’s quite capable of doing the pattern, so it’s just about honing it in a little more.”

Tim Dutta of the Dutta Corp. shipping enterprise said horses for the dressage and jumping World Cup are scheduled to leave Miami Mar. 25. The horses will make the journey of 680 miles/1,100km from Amsterdam to Gothenburg by road.

Results:

CDI-W World Cup Grand Prix Freestyle

Judges: Katrina Wüst Peter Storr Jane Weatherwax Elisabeth Max-Theurer Irina Maknami
Place Score Nation Athlete Horse E H C M B
1. 83.570 USA Olivia LaGoy-Weltz Rassing’s Lonoir 82.075 85.6 81.35 84.6 84.225
2. 76.095 CAN Jill Irving Arthur 77.775 76.325 76.025 76.25 74.1
3. 72.110 USA Mette Rosencrantz Dzeko 72.125 72.975 73.55 70.975 70.925
4. 70.550 CAN Evi Strasser Déjà Vu Tyme 71.575 71.375 70.525 70.175 69.1
5. 69.085 USA Jan Ebeling Status Royal OLD 67.7 68.725 70.175 67.3 71.525
6. 65.515 USA Missy Gilliland Toledano XXXI 64.525 63.975 67.725 63.675 67.675
ELIM KOR Dongseon Kim DSK Belstaff