One of the perennial highlights of the Great American Insurance Group/United States Dressage Federation (USDF) Region 7 and California Dressage Society (CDS) Championship Show, being held this year September 19-22 in Rancho Murieta, is the CDS Young Horse Futurity where four, five, and six-year-olds show off their talents across two rounds of competition. This year’s field of more than 70 horses (including almost 30 California-breds) was one of the largest in CDS Futurity history, and with coveted titles and more than $15,000 in prize money on the line, competition was fierce.
By Yellow Horse Marketing for the California Dressage Society
Where there’s a will there’s a way, and for adult amateur competitor Lindsey Schulz, hard work and dedication paid off in spades on the first day of the Great American Insurance Group/United States Dressage Federation (USDF) Region 7 and California Dressage Society (CDS) Championship Show, being held September 19-22, 2019 at the Murieta Equestrian Center in Rancho Murieta.
Aboard Nora Capers’ Lippizaner mare Delia 87, Schulz (representing the Los Angeles Chapter) topped a tough field of 11 predominantly open competitors in the Region 7 Intermediaire Freestyle Championship, earning the unanimous win under both judges with a top score of 74.300% (watch her winning ride HERE).
“Delia is such a cool mare who is so sweet and just goes in and does her job,” said Schulz, who hails from Sebastopol, Cal., where she has a career training and rehabilitating dogs, and endures a seven-hour commute each way just to have a chance to ride. “I half-lease her from her owner, and I actually only get to ride her about one week out of the month because I live here in Northern California, but she’s stabled in the southern part of the state. So it’s a very special horse that allows me to hop on and do this.
“This is our first Championship Show together, and of course it can be intimidating to go in there with this type of competition, but I think the most important thing is to focus on your own ride and keep doing the best that you can personally,” Schulz continued. “Her changes are just wonderful – every time we go in there it’s like she says ‘I’ve got this,’ and that’s always a great boost of confidence.”
Off to a promising start, Schulz have now earned an invitation to the US Dressage Finals presented by Adequan®, and will continue to compete across both the USDF and CDS divisions at the Prix St. Georges and Intermediaire I level this weekend. “I was really curious to see how we’d stack up here, and we’ll see how the rest of the weekend goes but the Finals are definitely something we’ll be thinking about now,” Schulz explained. “I’d love to make it to Kentucky. Who wouldn’t want to go, right?”
Another big winner was Paula Paglia (Temecula Valley Chapter) who earned the Great American/USDF Region 7 Fourth Level Freestyle Championship on a score of 67.183% aboard Kate Earl’s Belgian Warmblood gelding In D’Aire, a horse she’s known since he was an award-winning yearling. “He warmed up so nice and relaxed, and I’ve been trying to ride him with a little more power while still being correct. Today he was right on my aids and we got both of our lines of three’s which I was really proud of, and he’s really starting to sit down and turn in his pirouettes,” Paglia explained. “I love it here at the Murieta Equestrian Center – the renovations are beautiful and this competition is always so well managed and everyone’s so friendly. We actually live in Scottsdale, Arizona but choose to compete here in Region 7 because we really enjoy showing in California.”
Elena Flaherty of Clayton, Cal. (East Bay Chapter) was a little worried in the warmup before her ride, but faith in her German Sport Horse gelding Royal Chrome paid off as the pair earned the Great American/USDF Region 7 Third Level Freestyle title with a score of 71.700%. “Things started out a little tense in the warmup so I wasn’t sure what I was going to have in there, but once we went in the ring he was really with me and was just fabulous,” said Flaherty of her partner. “As soon as he heard the music he knew what his job was. As the ride went on I was able to make adjustments without tension, and it felt really smooth and flowing. We’ve been working recently to add some additional difficulty to the freestyle and it paid off – we were really able to show off our changes. And yes we are also thinking about the US Dressage Finals, and possibly going with [Reserve Champion] Ericka Reinig because she made the trip last year and can show me the ropes. We’re really excited about it!”
A forward, flowing performance earned Megan McQueeney (Topanga, CA, Ventura Chapter) and Denise Griffith’s KWPN mare Ilima a score of 74.333% and the victory in the Great American/USDF Region 7 First Level Freestyle. “She’s only six years old and had about a year and a half off to have a baby, so this is her first season back after being a mom,” McQueeney noted. “She’s an energetic horse and can be a little hot at first, but once she settles in she gets to work. She moves really nicely off your leg so we can show off those leg yields and zig zags. As for Kentucky, it’s a possibility – this has been a great way to start and we’ll see how the rest of the show goes.”
For more information about the California Dressage Society Championship Show, including news, schedules, ride times, and results, visit the CDS website and follow along with behind-the-scenes updates and photos on the CDS Facebook page.
March 11, 2019 (Conference Call)
June 17, 2019 (Conference Call),
September 9, 2019 (Hellenic Hall 600 Alhambra Blvd, Sacramento 95816)
November 19, 2019 (Irvine Hilton)
January 10-12, 2020 Annual Meeting (Sacramento / Murieta Equestrian)
CDS Annual Meeting 2020
This CDS Annual Meeting will offer something for everyone.
Friday January 10 will be the executive board meeting and all members are welcome.
Saturday January 11 will be the Annual Meeting, Chapter Townhall style meeting, all held at the Embassy Suites, Sacramento Riverfront from 8am to noon. Saturday lunch is included and after lunch anyone who is interested may attend the Freestyle Video/Lecture session as a silent auditor from 1-4pm ($40). This session is presented by Janet Foy and Terry Gallo. Saturday night will be the gala award dinner at Embassy Suites. The ever popular silent auction will be held in the Embassy Suites Saturday and close during the Saturday Gala Dinner with live auction items.
Just for the Judges and L Graduates - there will be a special program for licensed judges and L grads that will count for the licensed judge freestyle designation and also count for L graduate continuing education. This program follows a structured curriculum and format on Musical Freestyle. The curriculum will be taught by Olympic Judge Janet Foy and Olympic Freestyle designer Terry Gallo and will include the following lecture topics: Music, Choreography, and Judging Information. Audio and audiovisual components will complement the lecture. This program will be held at the Hellenic Hall 600 Alhambra Blvd, Sacramento from 8 - 4pm. The judges fee for Saturday Judges Program will be $180 ($200 late fee after December 20). Sunday Symposium is included in this price. Silent auditors are welcome after 1pm for a $40 fee.
Sunday January 12 will be a freestyle symposium with featured clinicians, Janet Foy and Terry Gallo as they work with freestyle demonstration horses and riders of all levels at the Murieta Equestrian Center. The charge will be $95 ($110 non member fee). There will be an optional $5 fee for USDF University credit.
Registration for each event will be available online soon.
If you have a freestyle and wish to be a demonstration rider for the Sunday January 12 Symposium at Murieta Equestrian Center, please upload your freestyle to youtube.com and email the link to Joan Williams firstname.lastname@example.org, Ellen Corob email@example.com and Melissa Creswick firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to identify your freestyle level, your name and your horse’s name as applicants for the Sunday freestyle symposium with Janet Foy and Terry Gallo. Please provide a show results history and short bio. Riders will be asked to pay for stabling and bedding. The deadline for applications is November 15.