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    WELLINGTON, Fla. — Before Steffen Peters competes this winter in Los Angeles and San Juan Capistrano qualifying events for the 2015 Reem Acra World Cup of Dressage in Las Vegas, he took a cross-country trip to Florida — and won the hearts of East Coast fans.

    At the 2015 Adequan Global Dressage Festival, Peters rode Rosamunde to a first-place finish in the FEI 3* Grand Prix with a 71.3 percent, and Legolas 92 to a 71.2 percent in the FEI 5* Grand Prix. The top-ranked FEI rider also received the People’s Choice award, presented by Ann-Louise Cook, for his riding skills and contributions to dressage.

    Also shining brightly in the Sunshine State was Kathleen Raine of Murrieta, who rode the lovely mare Breanna to a 73.667 and a title in the FEI Grand Prix Special CDI 5*.
    The Adequan Global Dressage Festival is the world’s largest international and national dressage circuit featuring eight CDIs, including five CDI-Ws, one 4* and one 5*, the only non-championship CDIO Nations’ Cup in the Western Hemisphere, as well as weekly U.S. National events.

    Peters’s win in the 3* came on the firs international Grand Prix for “Rosie,”, an 8-year-old Rheinlander mare (Rock Forever-First Lady, Fidermark).

    “It went extremely well,” he said. “The horse has so much power, and she does it with so much lightness and elasticity. It was an honor to ride a horse like that.”

    Peters added that Legolas 92, the 13-year-old Westphalian gelding (Laomedon-Furstin, Florestan II) whom he rode in last year’s World Equestrian Games, has been going well, too.

    “He’s been trying to compete with his little sister, Rosamunde, and he’s been giving her some tips,” smiled Peters. “He was wonderful three weeks ago when we did a National show, and I hope he continues to go exactly the same way as he did then.”

    The People’s Choice Award gives dressage enthusiasts on the show grounds a voice in choosing which rider deserves to win, based on exemplary sportsmanship, horsemanship, and performance.

    Raine and Breanna have been partners for more than 10 years, as she began working with the mare as a 4-year old.

    “It has been so fun to have had her for so long,” said Raine. “We know each other really well, and I enjoy starting them from the beginning and training them up.”

    The pair’s lengthy stay in Europe last season has seems to have really helped Breanna cope with large atmosphere venues.

    “Being in Europe really helped her suppleness and her whole way of going,” Raine said. “I can see it in her reaction, her consistency, and the atmospheres we were able to experience there, which we don’t really have here. It helped to boost her confidence.”

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