The West Coast's 2013 international dressage competition season gets underway this week at the Mid-Winter Dressage Fair & CDI 3*/Y/J, February 22 - 24 in Burbank, CA. Final preparations are being made at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center to welcome an impressive roster of U.S. and Canadian competitors whose aspirations are already turning to the 2014 World Equestrian Games (WEG) in France. Their horses will show off their talent on hi-tech and horse-friendly Olympic Mix footing, vying for scores from an acclaimed judging panel including Olympic Games official Gary Rockwell (5* USA), joined by Jeanne McDonald (4* USA), Eddy de Wolff (4* NED), Brenda Minor (4* CAN), and Magnus Ringmark (3* SWE).
After traveling the globe to compete at last year's Olympic Games in London and more recently at the Reem Acra FEI World Dressage Masters in Florida, Adrienne Lyle and her spectacular partner "Wizard" return to the West Coast to headline the CDI Grand Prix division. A buzz will certainly also be following fellow Olympian Guenter Seidel, whose new WEG hopeful "Coral Reef Wylea" will be making her international competition debut. Canada's Karen Pavicic and her gray Oldenburg "Don Daiquiri" have earned Mid-Winter CDI wins in the past, but will have to contend with legendary Olympic veteran Hilda Gurney with her long-time partner and California champion "Wintersnow", as well as David Blake with the impressive Danish Warmblood gelding "Ikaros".
In the small tour, more than a dozen up-and-coming stars will face off for top honors, including 2012 U.S. Olympic Teammates Steffen Peters and Jan Ebeling, who will present their latest prospects "Vaya Con Dios" and "Descartes", respectively. Young Rider National Champion and NAYRC gold medalist Brandi Roenick will make the bold move to compete against open CDI company with two mounts, "Weltino's Magic" and the "Pretty Lady". The Mid-Winter Dressage Fair is the first designated qualifying competition for the all-new Markel/Cornerstone Young Talent Search (YTS), a program which offers over $10,000 in prize money and awards for four, five, and six-year-old horses. Exhibitors will also have the opportunity to reap Cornerstone's "Rider Rewards", including free hotel stays, free stalls, complimentary food and drinks, and gift certificates.
The Mid-Winter Dressage Fair & CDI 3*/Y/J is an official qualifier for a multitude of national awards and championship programs, including the USEF Festival of Champions; the Adequan FEI North American Junior and Young Rider Championships (NAJYRC); the 2013 Markel/USEF Young Horse and Developing Horse National Dressage Championships presented by Horseshow.com; the Markel/Cornerstone Young Talent Search Finals; USDF year-end awards and regional championships; and California Dressage Society (CDS) Horse of the Year awards and annual championship show.
Spectator admission to the Mid-Winter Dressage Fair is free. For daily schedules and results, visitwww.cornerstonedressage.com.