A glance down the list of entries for the Adequan/FEI North American Youth Championships dressage reveals plenty of Hanoverians, Dutch Warmbloods, Oldenburgs, and other warmblood breeds, but there are a few entries that break the mold. We caught up with Emma Teff and Ugo JV, Cameron Wyman and Thys, and Annika Tedlund and Eclipse BR.
• Ugo JV (Leviton—Oraima S, Jaleoso II) is an 8-year-old Andalusian gelding bred in Spain by Diego Recio Nieto and owned by Lee Burton. Teff, 16, Butler, Pennsylvania, started leasing him at the beginning of April and the two competed in the junior division with Region 1 at NAYC.
“It was really lucky that I found him,” she said. “I was in Florida for Lendon Gray’s Winter Intensive Training program and my horse went lame, so we were looking for something to lease. We knew [Ugo’s] owner because she let us stop at her farm on the way down. We’d reached out to ask if we could stay on our way back and mentioned that we were looking for something to lease. She said, “Well, actually I have one of my own!’ So I rode him the night we got there and the next morning he went on the trailer with us.
“He’s really sweet and fun and willing; he has an amazing personality and he’s been really fun to work with. This is the youngest horse I’ve worked with long term. He wasn’t as confirmed in everything as other horses I’ve ridden, and he needed to build some strength so I’ve been learning about that process. I’ve gotten a lot better at riding his gaits and I’m super excited to be here with him at my first NAYC.”
• Thys (Beart 411—Jachem 259) is a 13-year-old Friesian stallion bred in the United States by Mike Holbrook and owned by Cameron Wyman. He and Wyman competed in the young rider division with the combined Region 2/6.
“I actually bought him sight unseen when I was 16,” said Wyman, 20, Gig Harbor, Washington. “Buying a stallion was a little scary but he’s such a good boy. We’ve gone to NAYC twice in the juniors but this is our first year in the young riders.”
Wyman has been in California for the past year, studying animal science at the California Polytechnic University, but always sets a goal to qualify for NAYC.
“That’s just how our barn grew up,” she said. “Everybody wanted to go [to NAYC] and wanted to be super competitive. We have a great group of people that always supported each other, so it’s just been super fun to get up on a big stage and it’s cool to do it with a breed that’s not typical.
“This was probably one of the last horses I thought I would get, but he was just this freak of nature. I didn’t really know anything about the breed. The first time I rode him I didn’t know if I had brakes; I did not know how to control his power at all and I’m still figuring out how to do it, but it’s been good.
“He’s the most expressive, flamboyant horse I know. You always know it’s him walking down the aisle because he’s either yelling or you can just tell by how loud he steps.”
• Eclipse BR (Gabeno—Reina del Sol, Castiblanco III) is a 16-year-old Andalusian gelding bred in the United States by Julie Stammler and owned by Linnea Tedlund. He and Annika competed in the young rider division with Region 4.
“He’s kind of been passed down through our family of five kids,” said Annika, 20, Medina, Minnesota. “My sister [Katarina] rode him at NAYC last year and I started riding him in the fall after she hurt her knee. We’ve had him for six years, and bought him to be a horse for all of us. When we first got him he was our first trained dressage horse.”
Annika is the second oldest sibling, and has ridden a variety of disciplines ranging from jumpers to cattle sorting.
“My parents had horses, but their horse died when I was little, so I was the one that kind of got them back to horses by going to pony camp as a kid,” she said.
“We’ve done a lot of stuff, we actually started out Western. I have a friend who’s a barrel racer and she lets me hop on her horse. I would have to say my favorite experience was getting on my friend’s reining and cutting horse because they are so fine-tuned, and I think it helped with dressage because the dressage horses have to respond to the smallest signal.
“It’s so cool just hopping on a horse that knows a different discipline, and I think we can learn something from each discipline.”
Catch up on all the NAYC dressage action here, and stay tuned for the August 19 issue of The Chronicle for all the great photos, features, and other content only available in print.