MMueller_Amistad_web1_copy.jpgOttawa, ON—Michele Mueller of Port Perry, ON, was the top Canadian rider in the Canadian FEI Eventing World Cup™ Qualifier, held Wits End Horse Trials, September 25–28, 2008, in Mansfield ON.

In a field of the 11 CIC 3*W division entries, Mueller, riding Julie-Anna Pring’s nine-year-old Canadian-bred thoroughbred cross gelding Amistad, lay in third place on a score of 51.5 following dressage. With a clean cross-country round accruing just 17.2 time penalties over David O’Connor’s cross-country course, which saw no riders make the time, and clear round in show jumping, Mueller moved up to finish in second place overall. 

“Amistad was absolutely wonderful.  He started his dressage test a little tense and relaxed in his canter work,” noted Mueller. “Stadium he was brilliant, he listened so well and made a difficult course feel easy. I hope he keeps it up.”

Corrine Ashton, from the United States, won the CIC 3*W division aboard Dobbin with a score of 66.9.

Other Canadians in the World Cup qualifying division included Ian Roberts of Port Perry, ON, and Paleface, a 13-year-old thoroughbred owned by Roberts’ wife Kelly Plitz, who finished in fifth place with a score of 106.4. In sixth place was Karl Slezak of Tottenham, ON, riding Rebecca Berry’s 14-year-old thoroughbred Kachemak Bay, with a score of 106.7. For many Canadian riders, Wits End represented the final preparation competition for the CCI 3* Fairhill Three Day Event, taking place October 16–19 in Elkton, MD, USA.

Wits End also hosted a CCI 1* division. Jessica Phoenix of Cannington, ON, 2007 Pan American silver medal team member, was the overall winner aboard Exuberant, her eight-year-old Canadian thoroughbred gelding. Sitting in fifth place after dressage on a score of 53.2, Phoenix added only 4.4 cross-country time penalties to her score throughout the rest of the competition to secure the win. Penny Rowland of Orangeville, ON, on H.S. Flying Finn, her seven-year-old Hungarian Warmblood, were in ninth place following dressage with a score of 56.8. The pair had a double clean performance over Jay Hambly’s cross country course, only one of two, and four faults in the show jumping round to finish in second with a final score of 60.8. Riding her horse Rubies to Diamonds, an eight-year-old thoroughbred mare, Rebecca Rebus, of Burlington, ON, finished third with a score of 67.9. In fourth, scoring 68.0, was Stephanie Hodge of Port Elgin, ON, and her 10-year-old Canadian Thoroughbred gelding Newport Agent. Yves Landry of Napierville, QC, rounded out the top five finishing with a score of 68.3.

Eighth place went to Sarah Talaga of Richmond Hill, ON, and her horse, Vena. Don’t Look Back and Curtis Barbour of Coboconk, ON, finished in 10th. In 11th place was Rowland and her horse Amazing Grance, and Julie Clark of Newmarket, ON, and Guiness placed 12th.

Complete results for Wits End Farm Horse Trials are found at For complete FEI Eventing World Cup Qualifying series information visit the FEI web site