Canada’s Beatrice Boucher crowned a winning week with Louxor De Lys, icing it with a win in the FEI Intermediate I Freestyle CDI3*, presented by Horseware Ireland, on the closing day of week three of the 2020 Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center (PBIEC) in Wellington, Florida. AGDF 2020 runs for 12 weeks, through March 29.
She edged out first-to-go Cesar Parra (USA) and his namesake, GK Don Cesar, who finished on 68.8% in second. Korean rider Dongseon Kim and Bordolino 8’s 68.45% completed the podium line-up.
Boucher, who was named Dressage Canada’s Athlete of the Year in 2018, was recording her second win of the week on breeder Lynda Tetreault’s nine-year-old Hanoverian gelding by Licotus out of a Weltmeyer dam.
“He’s quite young so we had some mistakes,” explained Boucher, who is 22 and has been riding Louxor De Lys since he was five. “He felt amazing in the warm-up and then he got tense; it’s a big ring for these younger horses. He’s a very hot horse, so there are mistakes here and there from the balance, but everything’s going to come together once he gets settled.
“We’re planning on doing the under-25 grand prix in a year or two; he’s schooling everything at home which has confused him a bit so he anticipates a little, but these are just baby mistakes and everything’s going to be confirmed with time and confidence in the ring. He is so sweet, he’s like a puppy dog and always wants to cuddle; when you want to put the bridle on, he hugs you.”
Boucher, who is based in Quebec, Canada, has 10 horses down in Wellington for the season and trains with her mother, Isabelle Ouellet.
“I’ve been training with her for ever,” she added. “It’s nice to be in a partnership like this with your mom. It can be difficult, especially when you’re a kid, but we established a line so when she’s coach she’s coach and as soon as we’re done, she’s mom.”
In the big tour Lövsta Future Challenge FEI Intermediate II qualifier, last-drawn Michael Klimke (GER) resoundingly swept the class with 73.456% on Harmony’s Diablo — with over 7.6% in-hand over second-placed Diane Creech (CAN) and Dublin L.
Harmony’s Diablo is a 10-year-old gelding by Olympic team gold medallist Desperados FRH, and was bred by the Pape family. He and Klimke’s marks included a nine for piaffe from the judge at E, Janet Foy, as well as a nine for the final halt.
“I was super happy with the piaffe/passage,” said Klimke, who has been coming to AGDF for six years then back to Europe in the summers. “Last year I rode Diablo in the small tour here in the CDI and won a few times, then he had kind of a break in the summer when I wasn’t showing much.”
Klimke’s aim is to use AGDF as a springboard to campaign Diablo on the European CDI grand prix circuit when he returns to Germany in April with his string of seven horses.
“Today we had a little mistake in the pirouette which was my fault, but the special quality of this horse is that if you don’t make a mistake, he makes no mistakes. In the test or at home he is the same: super focused. I’m so thankful to his owners Harmony’s Sporthorses for the ride on him, and I’m really looking forward to the final in week 12,” added Klimke, who rode in nine classes over this weekend and picked up five blue ribbons.
“AGDF is ideal because in three months there are seven CDIs and also national classes, so you can show a lot and train a lot of people. It’s very inspiring and we’re so thankful to the sponsors for adding the Future Challenge series. It’s such a positive team here at this show: sometimes, coming from Germany, I don’t know how everything works but you really feel really like a welcome guest — I think the Florida sun helps too.”
In the small tour ranks, two qualifying slots were up for grabs, and it was two more plus-73% scores that secured the tickets to the final in the Summit Farm Future Challenge FEI Prix St. Georges. Canada’s Shannon Dueck led the charge with 73.456% riding her own eight-year-old Hanoverian gelding As You Wish, by Wilkens. Kelly Layne (AUS) was nipping at her heels. She finished second with 73.015% claiming the second qualifying place on Fernando, by Foundation.
Susan Dutta (USA) may have been the only entrant in the FEI Intermediate II CDI3*, but the quality of her mount, Don Design DC, was not in doubt, and they earned the blue ribbon with 67.598% in their second show at AGDF 2020.
Susan Dutta on Don Designer DC with judge Katrina Wuest from Germany. ©️Susan Stickle.
The 10-year-old son of Der Designer — a former stallion who sold at the PSI auction as a five-year-old in 2011 for €1.1 million — is out of a Sir Donnerhall dam and is owned by Susan and her husband Tim Dutta of the international horse transport business The Dutta Corporation. A year ago, the now-51-year-old grand prix rider spent her 50th birthday in hospital undergoing an emergency appendectomy.
Sunday’s action concludes week three of the 12-week AGDF. International dressage classes return to Equestrian Village at the Palm Beach Equestrian Center in week five with another World Cup show. In week 4, the dressage venue plays host to the jumpers, who are in action from Wednesday to Saturday. AGDF 2020 runs for 12 weeks, through March 29. For more information and results, visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.