Wellington, Fla.— March 17
Shelly Francis was suffering from a migraine during her CDI*** Grand Prix test with Doktor at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival, but she pushed through to come out the winner.
Francis and Doktor won with a score of 70.18%. Olivia LaGoy-Weltz and Rassing’s Lonoir, in their second FEI Grand Prix start together, earned second place with a 69.94 percent, while Laura Tomlinson and Unique took third place with a 69.10 percent.
On the second day of dressage competition at Palm Beach International Equestrian Center this week, Francis and Doktor entered the ring late in the order, and moved fellow American LaGoy-Weltz out of the top position, which she held for majority of the class. Displaying consistent relaxation and rhythm in their tests, Doktor’s presence in the ring is progressing, according to Francis.
“I’m hoping to improve his self-carriage a bit, so that I don’t have to sweat so much,” she laughed. “He was very good, and he’s getting much better about not making as many mistakes in the test. The pirouettes today were very good and steadier. The piaffe and passage were nicer, but today he was in between hot and tired. He felt awesome, and he’s just going better and better.”
Francis said that Doktor really stepped up to the plate in the ring today and covered for her feeling a bit less on her game than usual. She explained, “I didn’t feel very good at all during the test, and he just kept on going.”
LaGoy-Weltz and Rassing’s Lonoir, who were very successful in small tour classes last year at AGDF, proved that they’re a combination to watch at the Grand Prix level this year and are becoming comfortable and confident with the movements at Grand Prix level.
“He moved into Grand Prix at the beginning of Florida at the national level, and I’ve been thrilled with how focused he is and how relaxed he is with the work,” said LaGoy-Weltz. “It’s like he’s almost found his own and now it’s time and strength building. This is his sixth Grand Prix ever, so I’m pretty thrilled.”
Tomlinson has had a successful two weeks aboard both of her Grand Prix mounts, Rosalie B and Unique, owned by her parents, Dr. & Mrs. Bechtolsheimer. She found a confident and rideable horse beneath her today in the ring, as Unique, one of her greener mounts, concluded one of her best tests yet.
“[At AGDF] is the first time that she’s been able to do a few Grand Prix shows in a row, which has helped us massively. She was a different horse to ride today than she was when she first got here. There are still parts of the test where she looks too big and not together to show off what she can really do and get those marks that she could get,” elaborated Tomlinson. “From a rideablity point of view, I’m thrilled. It’s really the best she’s been to ride, and she’s trying very hard for me. She’s obedient, and she’s never going to say no to anything.
“I’m thrilled with our progress and I feel like we also have a lot to build on as well,” continued Tomlinson.
All three riders will head in their own separate directions at the end of circuit in just two weeks, as Tomlinson and her team depart for Europe this Sunday, while both LaGoy-Weltz and Francis will contest the final CDI of the season at AGDF before reaffirming plans for the rest of the year.
Francis and Doktor will represent the United States in the Stillpoint Farm Nations Cup CDIO*** at AGDF in two weeks, while LaGoy-Weltz and Rassing’s Lonoir will contest their final CDI*** Grand Prix at AGDF.
“I’m hoping that both of the horses will be able to go to Europe and do the shows there. Doktor will be on the CDIO*** team, in two weeks, and I’m really going to try and show him off a bit more,” noted Francis. “He’ll have a couple of weeks to get it together for me, and I think if I were feeling better he would have done better today.”
LaGoy Weltz said, “I think we may go to Tryon for the CDI*** and maybe do a freestyle. I haven’t really started working on it yet. This season we’re just going to keep working and strengthening him more through the summer for next year.”
Read all about Laura Graves’ triumph in the CDI**** Grand Prix the day before, and make sure to watch some of the country’s top horses duke it out in the Friday Night Stars CDI 4* Grand Prix Freestyle live stream tonight at 7 p.m. EST.
Final Results: FEI Grand Prix CDI 3*, presented by The Dutta Corporation
Place, Rider, Nationality, Horse, Horse Information: Judge E%, Judge H%, Judge C%, Judge M%, Judge B%, Total %
1. Shelly Francis (USA), Doktor, 2003 Oldenburg gelding by Diamond Hit x Gurena x Renoir I owned by Patricia Stempel: 67.900%, 68.100%, 72.800%, 69.800%, 72.300%, 70.180%,
2. Olivia LaGoy-Weltz (USA), Rassing’s Lonoir, 2004 Danish Warmblood gelding by De Noir x Lorani x Loran owned by Olivia LaGoy-Weltz: 69.500%, 71.400%, 69.000%, 68.100%, 71.700%, 69.940%
3. Laura Tomlinson (GBR), Unique, 2004 Holsteiner mare by Caspaccio x Grana x Lord owned by Dr. & Mrs. Bechtolscheimer: 68.400%, 69.300%, 69.200%, 70.300%, 68.300%, 69.100%
4. Juan Matute, Jr. (ESP), Quantico Ymas, 2006 Hanoverian gelding by Fighting Fit x Hauptstutbuch owned by Juan Matute: 68.100%, 70.600%, 66.300%, 68.000%, 70.000%, 68.600%
5. Christoph Koschel (GER), Butopiar, 2006 Dutch Warmblood stallion by Johnson x Unknown x Cocktail owned by Hof Beckerode GmbH & Lusitano Academy LLC: 68.600%, 68.900%, 68.600%, 68.900%, 67.000%, 68.400%
6. Chris Von Martels (CAN), Divertimento, 2002 Westphalian gelding by Di Versace x Fatima x Farragamo owned by Lövsta Stuteri: 68.000%, 69.800%, 69.800%, 66.300%, 67.700%, 68.320%
7. Megan Lane (CAN), Caravella, 2001 Dutch Warmblood mare by Contango x P. Riviera x Riverman owned by Megan Lane: 68.300%, 66.900%, 70.900%, 68.000%, 66.600%, 68.140%
8. Kasey Perry-Glass (USA), Trostruplunds Scarlet, 1999 Danish Warmblood mare by Blue Hors Don Schufro x Ramona x Blue Hors Romancier owned by Diane Perry: 66.400%, 67.800%, 67.100%, 67.700%, 69.100%, 67.620%