Kate Shoemaker led the U.S. charge in Qatar on Thursday, Feb. 23, taking the overall top spot on the first day of competition at the CHI Al Shaqab CPEDI3*.
Shoemaker scored 76.25% in the Grade IV Para-Dressage Grand Prix—a personal best score on the Grand Prix A test with her partner Quiana, a 9-year-old Rheinlander (Quaterstern—Rubina, Rubinstern Noir) she co-owns with her parents Craig and Deena Shoemaker.
The victory also marked the one-year anniversary of their competitive debut, which they made at last year’s CHI Al Shaqab. In between, they took a silver medal at the Orifarm Healthcare FEI Para Dressage World Championship in Herning, Denmark.
“It went amazingly well today, and Quiana performed beautifully for me,” Shoemaker said. “It’s not easy for horses coming from the cold of Europe to adjust to the heat here, so we let her rest as much as possible, to be sure she was ready for the competition. I’m thrilled to have come out on top.”
The other two members of the U.S. team, Fiona Howard and Beatrice de Lavalette, finished one-two in Grade II. Howard took the top spot aboard her own Jagger, earning a 72.93%, and de Lavalette was second with her new mount Sixth Sense (71.37%).
The competition continues Friday with the Para-Dressage Grand Prix Test B and concludes with the freestyle on Saturday.
See full results here.