Week eight of the 2021 Adequan® Global Dressage Festival (AGDF) concluded on Sunday, March 7, with another win for USA’s Olivia LaGoy-Weltz and Rassing’s Lonoir in the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI-W, presented by Wellington Agricultural Services.

LaGoy-Weltz had her sights set on the FEI Dressage World Cup™ Final in Gothenburg, Sweden, and the ride today secured her ticket for the North American League after earning another personal best, 83.570%.

“I think there was relief when we came down that final centerline,” admitted LaGoy-Weltz. “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.”

Though the pair was just on the cusp of 90% for their artistic marks, LaGoy-Weltz noted that she wasn’t sure how it went until the pair left the arena and she got feedback from her team.

“I don’t always know how it went,” she said. “I’ll come out like, ‘Was it good?’ and everyone’s like, ‘It was amazing!’ I think we are all such perfectionists, and we are always finding things here and there that could be better. He’s quite extravagant so I don’t always know what his legs are doing under me. When you come out and everyone is excited, there is relief. He’s 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.”

LaGoy-Weltz didn’t alter her freestyle since the last time she rode it in the International Stadium, and explained her reasoning on keeping it the same, though she and the 2004 Danish Warmblood gelding by de Noir owned Mary Anne McPhail and LaGoy-Weltz do have other variations of it.

Jill Irving and Arthur. (Susan Stickle photo)

“It’s still the same pattern and the same music,” she commented. “Marlene Whitaker made it for us and it’s really still the first draft, but I feel like she got it quite good, and I like familiarity. We have versions with small tweaks, but I feel like I know this one well, and it works, so why change it? It’s quite a challenging pattern. There’s a lot in it, and it takes a lot of focus to ride, on his part and mine, but I like it a lot and I think Marlene did a fantastic job with all of it.”

She continued, “I don’t think I will change it at all for World Cup Finals. I’ll probably keep it the same. It is the maximum degree of difficulty, so if I do anything more difficult. I don’t get rewarded. 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.”

Judge Jane Weatherwax also applauded LaGoy-Weltz’s freestyle, stating, “The thing that I really appreciate about Olivia and her horse is the harmony that we get from them and the nice self-carriage. The risks that were taken, and there was a great deal of difficulty in that freestyle, it all paid off. They were very calculated. I never worried about her getting it done, and the music was fantastic. Today they were right on it together. When something goes so well, and as a judge you aren’t worried about anything, it makes it very enjoyable to watch.”

José Gomez of CDI-W sponsor Wellington Agricultural Services concluded by saying, “It’s a pleasure to sponsor, and we are looking forward to being a permanent fixture here for a long time. We are a local service company that caters to the equestrian community, and our goal is to keep Wellington the number one-horse capital of the world.”

Second place in the FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI-W, presented by Wellington Agricultural Services went to Canada’s Jill Irving on Arthur, Windhaven Farm’s 2005 KWPN gelding by Jazz, with 76.095%. Dongseon Kim (KOR) earned third place with DSK Belstaff, his own 2007 Hanoverian stallion by Brentano II, with 73.650%.

Camille Carier-Bergeron Earns Victory in 2021 Florida International Youth Dressage Championships

The Florida International Youth Dressage Championships (FIYDC) took place throughout AGDF 8, welcoming young riders from around the globe into the International Stadium. Twenty-year-old Camille Carier-Bergeron (CAN) and Gilles Bergeron’s 2008 Westphalian gelding by San Amour I, Sound of Silence 4, topped the entire championship as overall High Point combination, earning an overall score of 73.629%

This was Carier-Bergeron’s seventh year competing in the FIYDC, and she noted how proud she was to have started in the pony divisions and worked her way up. “It’s my last young rider year, so it feels great to have achieved our personal best at the Youth Championship with ‘SOS [Sound of Silence 4].”

Carier-Bergeron topped the CDI Young Rider Division with Sound of Silence 4, earning their personal best in their Young Rider Freestyle with a 78.145%. Second place went to Natalia Bacariza Danguillecourt (ESP) riding Dhannie Ymas, Yeguada de Ymas S.I.’s 2007 Hanoverian gelding by Don Crusador, with a score of 72.426%. Third place in the division went to Christian Simonson (USA) aboard Hemmingway, his own 2010 Hanoverian gelding by Hendrix, with 71.170%.

Carier-Bergeron continued, “I couldn’t be prouder of my horses this week, Sound of Silence 4 in particular. I got him in 2017, and when I bought this horse, he was a bit shut down and I couldn’t do much with him; we were barely able to canter. Looking back on that, and seeing us today achieving our personal best in our freestyle, it makes me want to cry! He gave his heart to me in there.”

Carier-Bergeron also claimed champion honors in the CDIU25 16-25 Division this time with Acoeur, Gilles Bergeron’s 2007 Baden-Wurttemburg gelding by Acordelli, with 71.422% overall. She explained, “Acoeur has been with me since 2019, and he is such a steady horse. On Thursday he lost a shoe in the middle of the test, and he was sound and kept going. I tried my best to stay focused, and he did it all with three shoes and was such a good boy. This is a hard week; it’s three days of difficult competition, and it can be exhausting for them, but these horses of mine just keep going and give it their all. I couldn’t be happier with them.”

She concluded, “I would like to thank Diamante Farms because they sponsor all of the youth classes show after show, and I think it is really great to have such a wonderful sponsor.”

Hope Cooper (USA) came in second in the 16-25 freestyle riding Hot Chocolate W, Mary Mansfield’s 2005 Hanoverian gelding by Hochadel, with 70.315%. Third place was rounded out by Codi Harrison (USA) and Katholt’s Bossco, Harrison’s own 2007 Danish Warmblood stallion by Blue Hors Don Schufro, riding to a 70.079% score overall.

In the CDI Junior Division, Maribeth Hebert (USA) took top honors with Florieux, her own 2002 Wephalian gelding by Furst Piccolo 2, earning a 66.340% in their Freestyle together.

The Lövsta Future Challenge/Young Horse Grand Prix Series welcomed a win for Kelly Layne (AUS) on Fernando, Ellen Trouille’s 2012 Hanoverian gelding by Foundation, earning a 71.764%. Katie Johnson (USA) and Paxton, Kylee Lourie’s 2011 Westphalian gelding by Dante Weltino OLD, received second place with 71.617%.

In the Future Challenge/Young Horse Prix St. Georges Series, Ashley Holzer (USA) topped the leaderboard with Bliss, Holzer and Diane Fellows’ 2012 Oldenburg mare by Bordeaux, with a 73.014%. Second place went to Jan Ebeling on Zitat, Sarah Pierce’s 2013 Swedish Warmblood gelding by Zaladin MI, riding to 70.514%. Kelly Layne (AUS) claimed third with Que Jolie, Anne Barrett’s 2012 Hanoverian by Quarterback, on 70.220%.

Competition at AGDF will resume with AGDF 9 on March 12-14, which will host a CPEDI3* presented by Nutrena and Adequan®, along with national competition. AGDF 10 will follow on March 16-21 for the Stillpoint Farm FEI Nations Cup CDIO3*, FEI Grand Prix and Grand Prix Freestyle CDI3*, presented by Wellington Regional Medical Center, FEI Grand Prix and Grand Prix Special CDI3*, presented by Iron Spring Farm, Small Tour CDI3*, presented by Horseware Ireland, and the CDIO U25, presented by Diamante Farms, as well as national competition. For more information and to see a full list of results, visit www.globaldressagefestival.com.

Final Results: FEI Grand Prix Freestyle CDI-W, presented by Wellington Agricultural Services:

1. Olivia LaGoy-Weltz (USA) on Rassing’s Lonoir, Mary Anne McPhail and Olivia LaGoy-Weltz’s 2004 Danish Warmblood gelding by de Noir: 82.075, 85.600, 81.350, 84.600, 84.225; 83.570%

2. Jill Irving (CAN) on Arthur, Windhaven Farm’s 2005 KWPN gelding by Jazz: 77.775, 76.325, 76.025, 76.025, 76.250, 74.100; 76.095%

3. Mette Rosencrantz (USA) on Dzeko, Cory Walkey, Mette Rosencrantz, and Robin Cathey’s 2006 Oldenburg Stallion by Dimaggio: 72.125, 72.975, 73.550, 70.975, 70.925; 72.110%

4. Evi Strasser (CAN) on Déjà vu Tyme, Erika Murphy and Evi Strasser’s 2007 Hanoverian gelding by Dauphin: 71.575, 71.375, 70.525, 70.175, 69.100; 70.550%

5. Jan Ebeling (USA) on Status Royal OLD, Ann Romney’s 2010 Oldenburg gelding by Statesman: 67.700, 68.725, 70.175, 67.300, 71.525; 69.085%

6. Missy Gilliland (USA) on Toledano XXXI, her own 2007 PRE gelding by Ambicioso XV: 64.525, 63.975, 67.725, 63.675, 67.675; 65.515%