So I really wanted to do a comprehensive breakdown on my thoughts from the LRK3DE Dressage but to be honest, I missed parts of yesterday morning, the entire afternoon, most of this morning so I’m going to ramble out my favorites. I’ve missed so much because our English Golden, Jax, is sick and I’ve been working on getting him diagnosed. Between that and work I’ve been spread thin lately and therefore unable to keep up with one of my favorite events of the year (at least for the first couple of days).
All the 4*s are really fun to watch of course, but having this one so close to home is really cool and it’s fun to see the US riders shine. Particularly those who aren’t always able to go to the over seas competitions.
For this year I love the test they have, it flows really well and while some of the movements might be trickier for green horses I think it is a great opportunity for riders to really show how hard they’ve worked on their Dressage! Even for the greener horses I’ve seen go around, they’ve all done well. Typical eventing pony problems in horses that would rather be galloping cross-country than playing in the sandbox.
So let me run down my favorite tests that I saw from what little bit I did see:
- Boyd Martin on Tsetserleg (31.2)
- Michael Jung (Jung-gernaught) on fischerRocana FST (27.1)
- Elisa Wallace on Simply Priceless (35.7)
- Will Coleman on Tight Lines (38.3)
- Christopher Burton on Nobilis 18 (27.9)
- Pawel Spisak on Banderas (35.5)
- Marilyn Little on RF Scandalous (24.8)
- Lynn Symansky on Donner (31.3)
- Oliver Townend on Cooley Master Class (28.7)
Honestly the weather this year looks so much better than I remember in previous years. No insane wind, no rain, I’m really looking forward to seeing them run cross-country tomorrow! This year is really competitive and I’m loving that they took the Dressage multiplier away, they said it would be close going into cross-country and, obviously, they weren’t lying!
Spisak on Banderas isn’t placed very high, as I’m writing this they’re 19th just under Park Trader (35.0) and Buck Davidson, but he made my list for a reason. This is my new “to watch” horse. I’m in love! The combination are from Poland and were on the Rio Olympic team back in 2016. Banderas is a gorgeous horse. He looked tense in the ring today but this is their first year at this venue and event so I’m passing it off to being a younger (can I call him green despite his show record?) horse in a new venue.
I was highly impressed by Martin on Tsetserleg and Coleman on Tight Lines. I’m a huge fan of Wallace on Simply Priceless, but fan-ship aside I really thought they came out and put in a great test. I will admit to having missed both of Oliver Townend’s early rides but being a little disappointed with where he was in the rankings. He more than made up for it with Cooley Master Class by riding right into 5th place. He’s been one of my favorite riders since I was a kid (literally since late middle school/early high school) and I had high hopes for him. They’re saying that cross-country will shuffle people around quite a bit so we’ll see how he does then!
I thought Colleen Rutledge on Covert Rights (31.7) rode well, about where I expected. I’m excited to see Mackenna Shea on Landioso (32.5) where they are as well. I remember watching her first time at the K3DE when it was still Rolex (oh yeah, it’s only been a year since it was Rolex… I should stop being dramatic shouldn’t I?). Hoping to seen Laine Ashker back in the line-up next year, or the year after. I know she’s got some incredible horses coming up but it’s definitely really sad to not see her and Anthony Patch on the line-up.
You can live stream (for free) by signing up for a free fan account with USEF here. I wish it was a little more reliable, I ended up having lots of issues with the sound or video cutting out and needing to re-load this afternoon, although it did better for me in the earlier hours so I expect that’s just more people logging in to watch. USEF should definitely work on that issue though. You can check the scores out here and those update in real-time.
Cross-country starts tomorrow at 11 am but the livestream goes on at 10:30 am. I’m excited about watching it, even if I’m doing other things at the same time.