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Tange Kaastrup, Wells and Voets Earn Para-Dressage Gold At WEG

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Mill Spring, N.C.—Sept. 18

Three sections of competitors battled it out for individual medals on Day 1 of the Adequan World Para-Equestrian Championship.

The Dutch national anthem played first, as Sanne Voets and Demantur NOP laid down a fluid test to mark 73.92 percent in the Individual Grade IV test.

Sanne Voets and Demantur N.O.P. took the gold medal in the Grade IV individual championship. Photo by Mollie Bailey.

“He’s so eager and willing to work; he’ll always try his heart out,” said Voets of the horse she’s been riding for 2 ½ years. “He felt happy and relaxed today. He was fresh the last few days, but he was perfect today and gives me so much confidence. He just makes me feel like it’s only him and I in that arena. We have a great team around us, but when we enter the arena we’re alone ,and that felt really good today.”

Voets edged out Brazil’s Rodolpho Riskalla and Don Henrico for the gold, with Denmark’s CSK’s Que Faire and Susanne Jensby Sunesen taking bronze.

The only two U.S. riders competing today took a turn in the Grade IV competition. Angela Peavy and Royal Dark Chocolate claimed sixth.

Angela Peavy and Royal Dark Chocolate took sixth place for Team USA in the FEI World Equestrian Games for Grade IV Adequan Para-Dressage Individual Championship. Photo by Mollie Bailey.

“I was really pleased with her medium trots because that’s something in the past I’ve really had to work on more and more,” said Peavy, Wellington, Florida. “It’s not our natural talent. She was really listening and pushing from behind. She was very going, and I like that about her. We want to be bold in the mediums. My horse I took to Rio [for the Paralympic Games] loves to do medium trots; he was very good at them. ‘Coco,’ she’s not bad at them, but we need to be bold together, and I need to stick to each beat of her and ride them with her.”

Kate Shoemaker and Solitaer 40 also showed off their Grade IV Individual Test, finishing seventh.

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For the U.S. Kate Shoemaker and Solitaer 40 placed seventh in the Grade IV individual championship. Photo by Mollie Bailey.

“Today was unfortunately a bit of a disappointment,” she said. “It wasn’t quite what we were expecting. I definitely left my horse in the warm-up arena today, and he was just a little too hot and tired when we got in the arena. It wasn’t our ride today, but there’s two more to go; we’ll go from here.

“Now that it’s getting hot again we’ll go a little more toward resting him,” she continud. “He’s well prepared for this show, and if it comes down to it we need energy in the arena, so we’ll just make sure we don’t overschool him.”

Sophie Wells, who has dominated Grade V for the last Olympic cycle, continued her strong performances, winning individual gold on C Fatal Attraction over Frank Hosmar and Alphaville N.O.P. of the Netherlands, with Regine Mispelkamp and Look At Me Now taking bronze.

A small mistake at the start of her test didn’t faze her.

Sophie Welles rode C Fatal Attraction to the gold medal in the Grade V individual championship for Great Britain. Photo by Mollie Bailey.

“It would have been helpful if we didn’t have that blip, but it brings you down to earth, doesn’t it?,” she said. “It gives me an opportunity to give him some reassurance and start to build the test. Sometimes you feel like you want to go in and get it done straight away.

“I quite liked my lateral work; I came out, and my coach was like, ‘That’s the best left pirouette you’ve ever done.’ I said ‘OK! Thanks!’ ”

Rounding out the individual golds was Stinna Tange Kaastrup and Horsebo Smarties, earning her medal for Denmark. She took the prize ahead of Pepo Puch and Sailor’s Blue (Austria) with Nicole den Dulk and Wallace N.O.P. (the Netherlands) taking bronze.

Tange Kaastrup won despite an error on course.

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Denmark’s Stinna Tange Kaastrup and Horsebo Smarties captured the gold in the Grade II individual championship. Photo by Mollie Bailey.

“I’m so annoyed about that,” she said. “I still don’t know what happened! I think the heat got to me because I know the test; I’ve been running around in my wheelchair all morning doing it directly, and I got in there, and I lost focus.

“I love that horse to pieces—I really do,” she continued. “He’s amazing. He’s such a buddy; you can always trust him. He stays 100 percent focused on me, and I really felt that I could do little things, and he would stick with me all the time, and the love that I receive from him, I’m going to carry that with me for the rest of my life.”

For full results from the FEI World Equestrian Games, click here.

For everything you need to know, including broadcast schedules, click here.

For all WEG coverage, click here.

We’ll be onsite for the full two weeks of WEG to bring you all the news you need to know plus gorgeous photos and insight into the competition. Be sure to check out the Oct. 8 issue of the Chronicle for detailed analysis.

2018 WEG Para Dressage Tuesday

Ann Glavan / September 18, 2018 6:37 pm

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